This year, the Directorate of Family and Morale, Welfare & Recreation is hosting the Great Gobbler Virtual Marathon, and it’s going on right now through Nov. 30.

Last year the race was called the Great Turkey Chase, where 83 runners participated in the in-person half marathon. Toni Kornegay, DFMWR’s recreation specialist, is happy to be able to offer a full marathon this year for people to participate in, even if it is held in a nontraditional way.

“We were wanting to offer a full marathon at some point. Since we had to switch to virtual, it was the perfect time to do an extended distance,” Kornegay said.

Since the race is being held virtually runners have been given the option of running the race in segments giving all levels of runners the chance to participate.

“A virtual race give participants the opportunity to do the race at their pace. I’m sure there will be seasoned runners that will do the entire distance at once but now all levels can participate. They can break it up how they see fit.”

This isn’t the first race this year that has been held virtually. The Ten-Miler Shadow Run and the Virtual Triathlon were also hosted in a nontraditional way. Kornegay believes that hosting events like the Great Gobbler Marathon can add a sense of normalcy to participants.

“I think it brings a small sense of normalcy in a time where we can’t compete in the traditional sense,” Kornegay said. “It also helps people to maintain and achieve fitness, which is important especially now. The fact that it is an actual race, although not in the traditional sense, I think, is motivating.”

She is excited for runners of all experience levels to participate, be active and kick off the holiday season with the challenging marathon.

“It’s important because some look forward to these type of events each year as a way to maintain fitness, spend time together as a family or for many other reasons. Also, I think it helps to maintain some type of normalcy,” Kornegay said.

The Great Gobbler Virtual Marathon is going on now through Nov. 30. The race can be run all at one time or in segments, but runners must complete 26.2 miles. Runners must submit their results no later than Dec. 2 to joyce.a.kornegay.naf@mail.mil.

Even though the race is going on now, you can still register. Cost is $20 for DoD ID card holders and $25 for non-DOD ID card holders.

Registration includes a T-shirt and a finishers medal. To register visit https://hood.armymwr.com/calendar/event/great-gobbler-virtual-marathon/4761627/53961.

Be out on the lookout for the next virtual run, hosted by DFMWR. It will be called The 12 K’s of Christmas and it will be a 12K/5K.