REED CITY — Thanksgiving morning was cold and slippery, but that didn't stop more than 100 community members from taking in some healthy exercise prior to the day's activities in the annual Prepare For Pie 5K run and walk, hosted by Trinity Lutheran Church and School.

Rich Saladin, CFO for Gerber Construction and part-time principal at Trinity Lutheran School, has organized the event for the past nine years.

"It's just a group of family and friends that meet at the Reed City Depot on Thanksgiving morning," Saladin said. "We started back in 2001 with four, and as we continue to invite friends and family to join us, the group gets bigger every year. This year we had 112 participants that either ran or walked, as well as 14 dogs. It's fun, it's free, and it's great fellowship."

Participants in the event were asked to bring a donation for the local Reed City Food Pantry as a way to give back to the community.

This year, Gerber Construction matched a $10 donation for every participant, for a gift totaling $1,120.

"Bill and Jill Terryn (owners of Gerber construction) are tremendous supporters of our community," Saladin said. "When Bill heard what we were doing, he wanted to encourage others to participate by sponsoring them for the food pantry. It definitely had an impact as we had the highest participation ever."

In addition to the Gerber donation, they collected a $20 donation and 140 food items, Saladin said.

Nedra Ball and Humphrey VanderVlugt, who operate the Reed City Food Pantry, said they were extremely pleased and appreciative of the large donation.

"What a blessing," Ball said. "This is going to help us tremendously over the winter months."