Thanksgiving is the feast day, but it's common for the eating to keep going--and going and going--through the holiday weekend and beyond.
That's true even of many health-conscious types--at least those who take part in the 10th annual Tour de Turkey bike ride, which returns Sunday to Anaheim.
Participants not only get lunch ("a big bowl of steaming hot chili with cheese, onions, tortillas and soft drinks," the event flyer announces), but they also can dig into the muffins, bagels, cookies, fruit and peanut butter and honey sandwiches that will be at the rest stops. There will even be giveaways of turkeys and pumpkin pies.
Of course, the event will also offer a chance to work off some of those calories, with courses of 12, 25, 50 and 100 miles from which to choose. All are fun rides--not races--and all start from Yorba Regional Park near the Riverside (91) Freeway in Anaheim.
The 100-mile century ride and the 50-mile route are on "old, flat country roads," heading east into Corona and then into the Murrieta area, said Randy DeMarco of Dimo Cycling, a Newport Beach-based promoter.
The 25-mile ride includes rolling hills and one "kind-of-tough hill but a great downhill on the return." The 12-mile route is described as scenic and flat.
The Tour de Turkey has drawn as many as 2,500 riders, but the economy and a bit of bad luck with the weather have cut participation in recent years. About 1,200 riders are expected Sunday.
The past two years, Santa Ana winds have hit on race day, but DeMarco says he is fairly confident that won't happen again.
"Chances of it three years in a row are pretty slim. Of course, I also said that about it happening two years in a row."
Proportionally, the Tour de Turkey's century event draws more participants (as high as 25%) than similar rides.
"The century is a very flat one, and it's very good, especially for people who want to do it for the first time," DeMarco said.
Cyclists who have never tried a century can expect to spend 5 1/2 to six hours on the road. (The fastest riders will do it in under four.)
Roving support vehicles will patrol the routes, and there will be rest stops with the aforementioned goodies along with water and portable toilets. Organizers promise that courses are well-marked and the route sheets easy to follow.
Day-of-event registration will be from 7 to 8:30 a.m. Starting time is 8 a.m. (7 a.m. for the 100-mile route), but it's not necessary to start at precisely the same time as everyone else.