New name, same race: Red, White & Brew 5K set for June 27

MILFORD – An annual celebration of patriotism and our community may have a new name, but the sentiment and the distance participants have to run is the same.

“The Red, White & Brew 5K is a run/walk that although was formerly called the Smile for Freedom 5K, is celebrating its 5th year anniversary this year,” said Chamber of Commerce of Greater Milford (CCGM) Director jo Schmeiser said.

The event started as part of Milford’s largest annual outdoor event, the Riverwalk “Freedom” Festival, with the help of Corporate Sponsors Dentsply Caulk, and took place downtown on a Thursday evening.

Registration for the 2015 event will begin at 8 a.m. on June 27. The race will start at 9 a.m. Registration fee for the race is $20 before June 25 and $25 after that.

The event started and ended in the Abbott’s Grill parking lot, and Abbott’s hosted the Awards Celebration on their deck after the race. Abbott’s Grill have also been on board since the beginning, Ms. Schmeiser said, and although the event has moved out of town, they will still be hosting the post event awards celebration in the backyard of the Mispillion River Brewing Company.

“The committee found the numbers seemed to be decreasing a bit, as our feedback was that it was hard for people to work all day and then get to the race, so we voted to move the event to a Saturday morning,” said Ms. Schmeiser. “The committee wasn’t sure it would be a good idea to hold the race in the same spot, as downtown is pretty busy Saturday mornings, plus Abbott’s Grill is not open on a Saturday at 8 a.m., so we discussed moving the race to another location. Someone mentioned that more races are partnering with brewery’s, winery’s, etc., so we met with one of the owners of Mispillion River Brewing, Eric Williams, to talk about the possibility of moving the event to the MRBC. Eric thought it would be a great opportunity, so the event changed locations last year.”

Besides the move, event organizers also decided to hire a professional race coordinator, Races2Run.

The route — new this year thanks to sponsors NKS Distributors, said Ms. Schmeiser — starts and ends at the Mispillion River Brewing Company. It goes all around the industrial park and across the street by the Boys & Girls Club and Delaware Veterans Home. Most of the businesses in that area are closed Saturday morning, so it makes it safe for our participants.

“Plus, with the help of the Milford Police Department, it is even safer and we feel very good about the support we get from the MPD and fortunately haven’t had any issues in the last four years,” she said.

Though the name has changed it is still part of the Riverwalk Freedom Festival, some of the funds raised during the event goes to fund the annual September event’s big attraction, the fireworks show.

The event also has some other beneficiaries.

“Two of the first supporters (and have supported the event every year) of the event were from the Milford High School Cross Country Team and the Delaware Prostate Cancer Coalition, so since the Chamber of Commerce for Greater Milford usually partners with our non-profit members with our events, it made sense to support those who support us. This year Bobby Spath and Lance Skinner, from the Milford School District, are serving on the committee, and David Sauls, from the Delaware Prostate Cancer Coalition is a 5 year committee member,” said Ms. Schmeiser.
The Chamber of Commerce for Greater Milford is always looking for volunteers, so if someone is interested they can contact the chamber at 422.3344 or email or

The Red, White & Brew 5K facts:11402396_10152957516372883_1512128182123642601_o

• This year the event is offering prizes, donated by Corporate Sponsors The Milford Chronicle, for the best male and the best female dressed in patriotic attire, to correspond with our theme.

• As mentioned, in addition to raising money for the two non-profit organizations, the balance of the revenue is donated to the Riverwalk “Freedom” Festival Fireworks Campaign. The fireworks display set for Friday Sept. 11, is the only annual fireworks display in Milford, and this year will be extra special since they fall on the anniversary of 9/11.

• The event takes place in the morning, and should be done before noon, so people can start off the day off with a little exercise and still have the rest of the day to go about their business.

• The cost (pre-day of event) is only $20 and if you don’t want to walk or run, you can be a “Social Walker” for $20 and skip the walk and go directly to the MRB Bar.

• Many sponsorship opportunities are available.

Managing Editor Logan B. Anderson can be reached at Follow @LoganBAnderson on Twitter.

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