Milwaukee World Festival, Inc.
Press Release

Summerfest Rock ‘n Sole Run Discontinued

Milwaukee World Festival to Focus on Alternative Charitable Efforts

By - Oct 30th, 2017 01:00 pm
Runners coming down the Hoan Bridge at the 2015 Summerfest Rock 'n' Sole Run. Photo by Jeramey Jannene.

Runners coming down the Hoan Bridge at the 2015 Summerfest Rock ‘n’ Sole Run. Photo by Jeramey Jannene.

MILWAUKEE (October 30, 2017) – Milwaukee World Festival, Inc., and the Summerfest Foundation, Inc., announced today that the Summerfest Rock ‘n Sole Run, presented by BMO Harris Bank, will not return for 2018. The race began in 2011 and drew thousands of runners along the lakefront, ending at Henry Maier Festival Park. The Rock ‘n Sole Run featured a  half marathon, quarter marathon, and 5k routes, in addition to a Kids Run To Read, for children ages 3-10, in partnership with SHARP Literacy, Inc.

“We took a closer look at our events and charitable involvement and made the decision to discontinue the Summerfest Rock ‘n Sole Run to refocus our efforts. We felt it was time for new creative ideas and look forward to reviewing a variety of community initiatives, including music education outreach events. I would like to personally thank all the runners and partners who supported the run over the years.” stated Don Smiley, President & CEO of Milwaukee World Festival, Inc. and President of the Summerfest Foundation.

Over the past seven years, more than 52,000 runners participated in the Rock ‘n Sole Run and proceeds benefitted various charities including:  Ronald McDonald House Charities, Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Milwaukee, One Fund Boston, Inc., and the Summerfest Foundation. Milwaukee World Festival, Inc. would like extend a special thank you to premier sponsors of the Rock ‘n Sole Run: BMO Harris Bank, Froedtert & The Medical College of Wisconsin Sports Medicine and The Medical College of Wisconsin, Pepsi, Aquafina, Boston Store, Gatorade, Eaton, UPS, Kemps, and Meijer, as well as Vision Event Management, race directors.

In addition, The Summerfest Foundation would like to acknowledge the support of our partners:  Wisconsin Department of Transportation, City of Milwaukee Department of Public Works, Milwaukee County Parks, Milwaukee Fire Department, Milwaukee Police Department and Milwaukee County Sheriff’s Office.

Milwaukee World Festival, Inc. and the Summerfest Foundation are proud partners of Milwaukee Public Schools Year of the Arts and will be hosting the All City Arts Festival, May 8-10, 2018 at Henry Maier Festival Park.  Year of the Arts is a collaborative campaign to raise awareness and build support for arts education assets and resources in Milwaukee Public Schools. In addition, Milwaukee World Festival, Inc., with support from, Hal Leonard, the Summerfest Foundation, the Wisconsin Conservatory of Music, Milwaukee Public Schools, Clearwing Productions and I.A.T.S.E. Local 18, will again host the Sixth Annual Summerfest Jazz Education Day in September 2018.  The Summerfest Foundation will continue to support in-school, after-school, and summer education programs for students in grades K-12 through its music education grants program.

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