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Pewaukee River Run will return

Kiwanis will sponsor 40th annual event

Nov. 14, 2012

This year was supposed to be the last for the Pewaukee River Run.

After 39 years, the Pewaukee Kiwanis wrapped things up after the 2012 event and called off the 2013 race because of a lack of participants and the physical demands of preparing for the event. More importantly, they had to compete against people who continue to sneak into the event for free.

But despite the challenges, the Kiwanis have decided to go ahead and bring the event back for the 40th year on May 11, 2013.

"People just go down the river and launch their canoes without paying," said Pat Gallagher, a new Kiwanis organizer for the event.

It's a six-mile stretch of river between the Village of Pewaukee and Frame Park in Waukesha. Participants are supposed to register, make a charitable donation and launch their canoes or kayaks before heading down the river. In recent years, people have been joining the race beyond the starting point, interrupting the registered runners and taking proceeds away from local charities.

All of the money raised by the event goes to local charities. In fact, the event is the club's second-largest fundraiser, Gallagher said.

"We time our launches for every 30 seconds so the river doesn't get congested. … (Event crashers) ruin all of that," Gallagher said.

The Kiwanis are hoping that, with more awareness, more people will want to register to participate.

And they're hoping people will want to support some of the great causes they're working toward. Proceeds will benefit the Pewaukee Food Pantry, the Tyme Out Center in Stone Bank, Pewaukee Education Fund and Honors Banquet, Pewaukee Library, Robotics Club, The Historical Society and Lake Country Caring.

Registration will open in January, but same-day registration will also be welcome. You can bring your own canoe or kayak and, if you don't have one, canoe rentals will be available. They're also excited for new technology (like computer tracking) and a few new "surprises" along the route.

"People were so interested in continuing, and we listened. We decided to bring it back again," Gallagher said, noting that there have been many requests and much encouragement from the community.

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