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KENOSHA — There’s still time for the public to get signed up for the upcoming Vonco 5K Run/Walk on the UW-Parkside campus.

For the third straight year, Trevor-based Vonco Products is rallying the community to help the American Heart Association. This year’s run is Saturday, Aug. 19, at the Wayne E. Dannehl National Cross Country Course, Petrifying Springs Road, Kenosha.

All proceeds from the Vonco 5K Run/Walk will benefit the Association’s Sept. 23 Heart and Stroke Walk in Milwaukee.

Check-in for the run begins at 9 a.m., followed by the rain-or-shine event at 10:30 a.m. The cost for the run is $35, while the walk is free.

Registration for the Heart and Stroke Walk in Milwaukee can be completed on the American Heart Association’s Heart Walk page.

Vonco ties to AHA deeply personal

Vonco President Keith Smith has spearheaded the event since its inception, and for him, there isn’t just one connection to his desire to keep growing this event – his grandfather died from a heart attack, and both his father and brother have had heart attacks.

“(That caused me) to really get passionate about healthy lifestyles,” he said. “Not necessarily just to avoid heart attacks, but it was more to manage my energy and what I want to accomplish in life by having the right (things) in place. I wanted to find ways and other outlets to kind of give back and join forces with other folks that have a similar message.”

Helping the American Heart Association and its Heart and Stroke Walk in Milwaukee is the perfect fit for Vonco.

“One of the things that I love about the Heart Association is their extreme focus for fitness and health. … I love what they promote from that standpoint, and I look to find ways to promote that within my organization as well and (with) anybody I come across.”

Last year’s Vonco event drew about 100 people and raised just shy of $3,500 for the American Heart Association.

Smith urges other area businesses to enter a team – or teams – for the Aug. 19 event.

“Get three or four people together and commit to going,” he said. “It’s early in the morning, a quick walk (or run) around, support a good cause and get your day started.

“That’s a big part of my health journey, is starting your day by investing in yourself with something healthy. A beautiful morning in August, it’s still cool. Get your walk in, and I promise that day will have a little bit of a different and more positive spin to it. You’ll just be in a better mood all day.”

The event is set up for all kinds of athletes. Serious runners can compete in the 5K, but there’s also a walk for those who want to get their daily steps in.

And it’s a chance to mingle with other businesses from the area as well.

“If you want to run in the morning and go for your PR, that’s great, I’ll be there right alongside you,” Smith said. “But I just want to see you out there walking, getting to know people. We have a great community, great people. Network a bit, get some exercise in, support a good cause and just be part of something that’s a little bit bigger than you.”

About the American Heart Association

The American Heart Association is a relentless force for a world of longer, healthier lives. We are dedicated to ensuring equitable health in all communities. Through collaboration with numerous organizations, and powered by millions of volunteers, we fund innovative research, advocate for the public’s health and share lifesaving resources.

Kenosha-area company Vonco building event to benefit Southeast Wisconsin Heart and Stroke Walk, American Heart Association

The Dallas-based organization has been a leading source of health information for nearly a century. Connect with us on, Facebook, Twitter or by calling 1-800-AHA-USA1.

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