Thanksgiving week activities in and around Northwest Austin

The annual Thanksgiving tradition features a 5-mile run, 1-mile walk and a kids K.

The annual Thanksgiving tradition features a 5-mile run, 1-mile walk and a kids K.

Activities, volunteer opportunities and more ways to spend Thanksgiving week in Austin.

Foster families get free admission to Austin Aquarium event
Foster families and adoptive families can enjoy free admission at the Austin Aquarium for “Foster Family Night” on Nov. 21. Guests can learn about the different animals housed at Austin Aquarium and even feed them. A pirate and a mermaid make an appearance as well. Guests are encouraged to bring a copy of a current foster certificate and a driver’s license as ID however presenting the promotional flyer from the Austin Aquarium’s website can serve as proof as status as well. 7 p.m.-9 p.m. Free. 13530 Hwy. 183, Ste. 101, Austin. 512-222-5586. www.austinaquarium .com

2 Volunteer Opportunities with Operation Turkey 
On Nov. 22, Operation Turkey, a national volunteer organization with a Northwest Austin branch, hosts a Turkey Tailgate outside Third Base Sports Bar at 13301 US 183, Austin, where volunteers gather to smoke over 600 turkeys to donate to Austinites in need. At the event, organizers also accept donations of clothing, care packages and drinks to give along with meals on Thanksgiving day. Free. 6 a.m.-10 p.m.

On Thanksgiving day, Operation Turkey hosts a volunteer event at P.F. Chang’s at 10114 Jollyville Road, Austin. Attendees can prepare, package and deliver food to individuals and families in need. Free. 8 a.m-12 p.m.

Run in the Thundercloud Subs Turkey Trot
The Thundercloud Subs Turkey Trot returns with Thanksgiving Day races The annual ThunderCloud Subs Turkey Trot returns Thanksgiving Day for the 27th year with a 5-mile run, a 1-mile walk and a Kids K course. 8:45-9:50 a.m. (start times). $8-$40. 701 W. Riverside Drive.

Kick off holiday shopping at local arts Bazaar
The Blue Genie Arts Bazaar returns for its 17th year on Nov. 24 featuring gifts from 200 artisans and craftspeople. Each Monday, 10 percent of proceeds are donated to the Make-A-Wish Foundation. 10 a.m.-10 p.m. (10 a.m.-6 p.m. Dec. 24). Free admission. 6100 Airport Blvd.

See the Zilker Holiday Tree Lighting
Austin’s annual Trail of Lights tradition at Zilker Park operates through the end of December. The 155-foot-tall Zilker Tree is decorated with a total of 3,309 lights and lit at a ceremony complete with live music and food vendors on Nov. 26. 6 p.m. Free. Zilker Metropolitan Park, 2100 Barton Springs Road. 512-974-6700.

By Emma Whalen
Emma is Community Impact Newspaper's Houston City Hall reporter. Previously, she covered public health, education and features for several Austin-area publications. A Boston native, she is a former student athlete and alumna of The University of Texas at Austin.