Runners Rally for 2019 Point Bock Run
By Taylor J. Hale
Special to the Gazette
STEVENS POINT — The Stevens Point Brewery 2019 Point Bock Run takes place on Mar. 2, with registration opening to the public on Jan. 1. The five-mile run has extensive roots in the region, and Point Brewery Director of Marketing, Julie Birrenkott, is gearing up for the coming program.
“The Point Bock Run is not just an event, it is a tradition,” Birrenkott said. “We hear stories about how families and friends get together every year just for this event. This event has been passed through generations, and it promotes a great message: the sport of running and healthy lifestyles.”
The run started back in 1982 and coincided with the debut of seasonal Point Bock beer. Point Brewery discontinued the program in the early 1990s. But interest was sparked again in the 2000s when athletes and faculty alike began to look for a platform to encourage active living.
“For several years a group of local runners talked about the possibility of establishing a new race in Stevens Point,” Birrenkott said. “They approached the brewery in the fall of 2002 to explore the possibility of bringing back the Bock. The Stevens Point Brewery, under new ownership, enthusiastically supported the idea and on Mar. 1, 2003, the Point Bock Run was born again.”
Since its rise from the ashes, the program has also received non-profit 501(c)3 status. Proceeds from the event go back into the community. Two $500 “scholarships” are disseminated to local groups and organizations each year by the brewery following the run. Prior recipients include ‘SPASH sports teams, Schmeeckle Reserve and many other local groups.
Birrenkott explained, “the mission [of the run] is to promote and support the sport of running and healthy lifestyles in central Wisconsin.”
Point Brewery is recruiting the aid of the SPASH girls track team to help serve concessions during the run. They have also enlisted the assistance of many other locals. Birrenkott is appreciative for the support the public has shown the program.
“We would like to thank all of the volunteers who work registration, traffic, bartend, pour water and plan this event,” she said. “We have near 100 volunteers who help put the Bock Run together, without them, it wouldn’t happen.”
The run starts promptly at noon. Electronic timing technology will be used to secure accurate race times and results. Top racers in all categories and other participants will gather for an award ceremony later in the day.
Stretch your legs and get ready to hustle for an exceptional purpose at this year’s Point Bock Run. A $25 registration fee is required to participate. Guests will also be entered into a door prize contest and invited to a post-race party event. Come out to run and walk for a great cause.
For more info on the run, and to register, visit their website at http://www.pointbockrun.com/home.html.