29 Oct Skechers Pier to Pier Friendship Walk Breaks Records
The Skechers Foundation announced that the 2014 Skechers Pier to Pier Friendship Walk broke records and raised over $1.1 million for children with special needs and education. Co-sponsored by Nickelodeon, the Walk was the largest to date – with more than 11,000 participants rallied by celebrity supporters Ellen K, Brooke Burke-Charvet and Tommy Lasorda.
“It’s my fourth time at the Walk, and every year it’s incredible to see thousands of parents, neighbors and friends gathering for our kids,” said Brooke Burke-Charvet, who attended the Walk with husband David Charvet and their four children. “Of all my experiences with Skechers, this is one of the most inspiring. This day really makes me feel like we can all turn our hopes and dreams for our kids’ futures into a reality.”
This year’s event also marked the launch of the Skechers Foundation’s scholarship program; at the Walk, Skechers president Michael Greenberg announced that they are planning to donate more than $250,000 to deserving students across the country in 2015. The Skechers Pier to Pier Friendship Walk and sponsor Steel Sports also successfully teamed up for the event’s first-ever #P2PSteelSports Selfie Challenge, which pledged $5 donated to the Walk for each photo posted on Instagram, Facebook or Twitter with the #P2PSteelSports hashtag. The challenge raised an additional $25,000 for The Friendship Circle and education foundations this year, and last year Steel Partners was integral in the Walk reaching the $1 million donation milestone.
“The #P2PSteelSports Selfie Challenge was a great incentive to involve kids and teenagers in a way that’s familiar to them,” said Warren Lichtenstein, chairman and CEO of Steel Partners LLC. “Now we have lasting memories from the Walk that can be shared across social media platforms, and we raised even more money to support children with special needs and education.”
“As a father and a friend, I firmly believe that every child deserves to live his or her life to the fullest, regardless of circumstance. And I’m thrilled to see that our kids now have more opportunities to learn, thrive and make lifelong friendships because of this event,” added Michael Greenberg. “Organizations like The Friendship Circle, which transforms the lives of children with special needs, and nurtures their friendships with teen volunteers – these kinds of memories last a lifetime. The extent of all their activities – from the programs at school, at home, fieldtrips to sporting events, and across the community – they’re unparalleled. They’re giving these wonderful children a strong sense of self-worth and belonging that has been long needed.”
Mr. Greenberg continued: “Supporting The Friendship Circle and directly funding much-needed education programs sends a clear message – we’re all committed to investing in our most important and beloved asset: our children. And with this largest-ever donation to date, I’m thankful and thrilled by all the great ways that we’ll be able to support The Friendship Circle and our schools in the coming years.”
Many celebrities turned out to support the Skechers Pier to Pier Friendship Walk including Ellen K of the globally syndicated On Air with Ryan Seacrest radio show; Brooke Burke-Charvet, actress, model and long-time supporter of Skechers; Hall of Fame baseball manager Tommy Lasorda, a member of the Pier to Pier Walk’s Board of Directors who has appeared every year of the Walk’s history; and The X-Factor Season 3 trio Sweet Suspense, who made their first appearance at the Walk to perform the national anthem.
Now the largest event supporting children with special needs and education, the Skechers Pier to Pier Friendship Walk has broken fundraising records every year since its 2009 launch. The Walk has raised more than $4 million to support The Friendship Circle, an organization that assists children with special needs and their families through one-on-one peer mentoring and social recreational programming – as well as funding education foundations to retain vital academic programs, maintain smaller class sizes, improve libraries, and upgrade school technology.
The Skechers Pier to Pier Friendship Walk thanks presenting sponsor Nickelodeon and many generous sponsors including Steel Sports, The Claudette and Ethan Rickett Care Foundation, Wells Fargo, Shorewood Realtors, Ross, Zappos.com, DIRECTV, Body Glove, Amazon Fashion, Kids Foot Locker, United Legwear, JAKKS Pacific, Marshalls, Cushman & Wakefield, Caskey & Caskey, Siltanen & Partners Advertising, Continental Development, Northrop Grumman, Equinox, Michael Stars, Chevron, and many others who have contributed funds and support to provide a better future for children. To learn more about the Skechers Pier to Pier Friendship Walk, please visit skechersfriendshipwalk.com or facebook.com/SkechersFriendshipWalk.