Steps to Independence Walk/Run

September 30, 2017
Big Four Lawn at Waterfront Park

Download our Sponsorship Opportunities!

Click here to Register a team or individual!

Steps to Independence Brochure coming soon.

The Down Syndrome of Louisville's "Steps to Independence" Walk/Fun Run will celebrate the lives of individuals with Down syndrome and their accomplishments.

The Lifelong Learning Centers located in Louisville and New Albany provide innovative and research-based education and development for all ages of individuals with Down syndrome. The Walk is DSL's largest annual fundraiser and continues to help us grow programs and services for our members in Kentucky and Southern Indiana. We need your help to ensure the continuation and expansion of these programs.

Activities include: 

  • Kids Fun Zone area where children can play games and win prizes.
  • 5K Run
  • Spirit Sprint, which is a short, fun race for people with Down syndrome over the age of 10. After the Spirit Sprint, those individuals who wish to are invited onto the stage to display their medals
  • Family Walk of various distances through the Waterfront Park
  • Family Picnic Zone with great food
  • Live music by Michael Bush and The Allstars band

Can't attend the Walk? Your help is still vital! Form a team allowing friends and family the opportunity to honor your loved one through donations. You can even have a sign made to be placed along the Walk course for all attendees to see.

7:00am - Fun Run/Walk Registration Opens
8:00am - Kids Fun Zone Opens
8:00am - 5K Run Begins
9:00am - Spirit Sprint 
9:30am  - Family Walk Begins
10:30am - Awards, Live Music, and fun activities!


  1. Click here to begin the registration process.
  2. Carefully make your Registration Type selection: If you are registering a Family or Multiple People, please read these options carefully. If you want to start a team and register your family, be sure to click on the first option, "Register Family" and pay for everyone at one time. You will work as a family to raise money. If you are registering and paying for multiple people but they will work separately to raise money, select "Register Multiple People."
    Note: The first person you register will be the Team Captain.
  3. Choose a Team Name: Your team name must include the FIRST and LAST name of the person with Down syndrome you are honoring.
  4. Personalize your "Team Page": Once you have registered yourself and/or other participants, click on the "Edit My Site" in the left hand menu column. This will give you a menu of pages that you can personalize (Team Page, Individual Page, etc.). Tell your personal story about Down syndrome and/or what DSL does to help your child/family and really personalize it with a picture.
  5. Recruit Team Members: Send emails from your "Email" function in the HQ of your personalized webpage to recruit walkers/runners and solicit sponsors. Email recipients will be given the link to your personal webpage where they can register to walk, run, or sponsor your team. Note: Send a test email to your own email first to make sure all links, pictures, and messages look as you want them to look before you send out to friends and family.  
  6. Show your Team Spirit:
    • ​​Create a poster for your team and deliver it to the DSL office no later than noon on Sept. 22.
    • Is creating a poster not for you? Try this easy, affordable option. Have a weatherproof professional sign created for you. Samples have been provided below. Must be submitted by August 28.

PRE-REGISTRATION: September 21-23 • 9:00 am - 7:00 pm 
Registration is held at the Louisville and Indiana DSL offices. *Friday the Indiana office will close at 4:30pm.  We strongly encourage individuals and teams to pre-register to avoid lines the day of the Walk/Run. Team Walk shirts may be picked up at this time.

This year, DSL is rewarding you with the chance to win fabulous prizes based on the amount of donations your raise and also for the number of participants your have registered to walk/run. You've never had a better reason to help us raise money! 

Donation Awards: These incentive prizes are awarded to the team captains on money collected by October 19, 2016. You will receive and entry for money raised as a team or each individual donation received in that category.

  • $2,000+: Resort vacation certificate for 7-night stay in a choice of destinations from around the world from Schuler/Bauer Realty
  • $1,500-$1,999: HP Black 15.6" Laptop PC with 4GB Memory, Touchscreen, 500GB Hard Drive & Windows 10 Home
  • $1,000-$1,499: Apple iPad Air 16GB WiFi
  • $500-$999:Fitbit Alta Fitness Wristband

Participation Awards: Receive an entry into a drawing for the number of 

  • 40+ participants: Chance to win 1 of 30 DSL Sport-Tek Pullovers
  • 25+ participants: Chance to win 1 of 30 DSL Athletic Wicking Shirts
  • 15+ participants: Chance to win 1 of 30 DSL Canvas Tote Bags
  • 10+ participants: Chance to win Flat Screen Vizio 32" LED HDTV

FUNDRAISING OPTIONS: Contact Diana Merzweiler, Executive Director, for more information on these programs.

  • Denim for Downs

    Denim for Downs

    Have your company support Down Syndrome of Louisville by hosting a dress down day. Denim for Down's is a fundraiser being held across our communities in September and October. All of the funds raised will support the mission and vision of Down Syndrome of Louisville.

  • Gift Matching Program

    If your company offers Gift Matching programs, send your paperwork to us and we will complete the necessary information.