Riverwalk District, Rowing Club partner to increase river access

Working to diversify RiverWalk's usage

The Milwaukee Riverwalk District and Milwaukee Rowing Club have launched a new partnership aimed at increasing community members’ access to the river and diversifying the RiverWalk’s usage.

One of its first initiatives has been to introduce rowing to a more diverse group of young people by eliminating common barriers, like transportation and swimming.  

The Milwaukee Riverwalk in front of Schlitz Park.

This summer, the Milwaukee Rowing Club has contracted with non-profit youth leadership organization Urban Underground to provide transportation for eight young people participating in the program, who take swimming lessons at the Northside YMCA, followed by team practice at the club boathouse. MRC also provides rides to races.

African American youth now represent a third of MRC’s middle school team.

The Riverwalk District and rowing club’s partnership is chaired by Gary Grunau, president of the Milwaukee Riverwalk District, and Alyssa Remington, city of Milwaukee economic development specialist.  

“Together our two organizations will bring a holistic view to how we can better feature and develop two of our community’s most valuable economic and leisure assets so that more people can live, work and play along the Milwaukee RiverWalk and Milwaukee River,” Grunau said.

The two organizations will host the annual Milwaukee River Challenge Weekend, which kicks off Sept. 14 at Schlitz Park with the River Challenge 5K and 2 Mile Walk.

The Milwaukee Riverwalk District and Milwaukee Rowing Club have launched a new partnership aimed at increasing community members’ access to the river and diversifying the RiverWalk’s usage.

One of its first initiatives has been to introduce rowing to a more diverse group of young people by eliminating common barriers, like transportation and swimming.  

The Milwaukee Riverwalk in front of Schlitz Park.

This summer, the Milwaukee Rowing Club has contracted with non-profit youth leadership organization Urban Underground to provide transportation for eight young people participating in the program, who take swimming lessons at the Northside YMCA, followed by team practice at the club boathouse. MRC also provides rides to races.

African American youth now represent a third of MRC’s middle school team.

The Riverwalk District and rowing club’s partnership is chaired by Gary Grunau, president of the Milwaukee Riverwalk District, and Alyssa Remington, city of Milwaukee economic development specialist.  

“Together our two organizations will bring a holistic view to how we can better feature and develop two of our community’s most valuable economic and leisure assets so that more people can live, work and play along the Milwaukee RiverWalk and Milwaukee River,” Grunau said.

The two organizations will host the annual Milwaukee River Challenge Weekend, which kicks off Sept. 14 at Schlitz Park with the River Challenge 5K and 2 Mile Walk.

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