Fifth Third Bank Expands Annual River Bank Run

CONTACT: Beth Oates                                                                                  FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

                    313-230-9002                                                                                 Feb. 8, 2018

Fifth Third Bank Expands Annual River Bank Run

Largest 25K road race in the U.S. reveals new race owner

Grand Rapids, Mich. – Fifth Third Bank today announced expansion of its annual River Bank Run by bringing on River Bank Events and Media, LLC as owner and race management. Fifth Third will continue as title sponsor of the race.

“For more than 40 years, Fifth Third has proudly supported this road race every second Saturday in May – from inception, to growth in participation, to supporting important charitable causes,” said Scott Stenstrom, race director and regional marketing manager at Fifth Third. “Since 1978, more than $40 million has been contributed back to our community.”

“Adding race management expertise and new sponsors will enhance the race day experience for participants and fans. New sponsors will support Fifth Third in driving long-term growth and sustainability of the event and furthering economic development in Grand Rapids.

In its 41st year, the run is scheduled for Saturday, May 12 in downtown Grand Rapids and features a 5K run and walk, 10K and 25K run and 25K handcycle and wheelchair racing.

“As a lifetime resident of West Michigan, I’ve become very familiar with the Fifth Third River Bank Run,” said River Bank Events and Media Chief Executive Officer Russ Hines. “My experience with event promotion and management will help guide me during this new endeavor. I’m excited to have this opportunity to continue the race with the support of the race staff, race committee and hundreds of volunteers. Our overall goal is to ensure that the race will continue for another 40 years.”

One of the race founders, Marty Allen, continues to be involved with the event.

He said, “In 1978, Frank Cashman and I established this race as a way to bring people to downtown Grand Rapids. I never thought it would get this big. Fifth Third has been a dependable leader and played a major role in the growth of this event. I’m excited to see what’s next for the Fifth Third River Bank Run and know the new players are going to come together to make it even greater.”

New 2018 sponsors

The new relationship with River Bank Events and Media has also generated additional sponsors that will add value to the event and improve the runners’ experiences. Amway will return for the second year and Spectrum Health is a new sponsor for 2018.

A long-time and well-known business in West Michigan, Amway is committed to providing nutrition and advancing wellness through community events like this one.

“We’re honored to expand our role in this signature event for the West Michigan region,” said Amway Community Relations Manager David Madiol. “The second Saturday in May is a celebration of fitness and community here and we are so proud to play a part in organizing.”

With their mission to improve the health of the communities they serve, Spectrum Health is also pleased to be a sponsor.

“Partnering with Fifth Third Bank, Amway and others on the River Bank Run is a perfect fit for us,” said Tina Freese Decker, vice president and chief operating officer, Spectrum Health. “For decades, the run has been a signature event in West Michigan and we are thrilled to be a part of it.”

Charitable support

Each year, nonprofit organizations benefit from race proceeds that have totaled more than $2.3 million since 2009. The 2018 charity partners are: Conductive Learning Center, Kids Hope USA, Meals on Wheels-Western Michigan, Mental Health Foundation of Michigan - be nice, Pine Rest Christian Mental Health Services and Wedgwood Christian Services.

Key dates for the 2018 River Bank Run

Wednesday, May 9: Junior run (ages 5-12)
Friday, May 11: Sports & Fitness Expo at DeVos Place
Saturday, May 12: 5K walk and run, 10K, 25K run, handcycle and wheelchair races

For more information on the Fifth Third River Bank Run or to register, visit

About Fifth Third

Fifth Third Bancorp is a diversified financial services company headquartered in Cincinnati, Ohio. As of Dec. 31, 2017, the Company had $142 billion in assets and operated 1,154 full-service Banking Centers and 2,469 ATMs with Fifth Third branding in Ohio, Kentucky, Indiana, Michigan, Illinois, Florida, Tennessee, West Virginia, Georgia and North Carolina. In total, Fifth Third provides its customers with access to more than 54,000 fee-free ATMs across the United States. Fifth Third operates four main businesses: Commercial Banking, Branch Banking, Consumer Lending and Wealth & Asset Management. Fifth Third is among the largest money managers in the Midwest and, as of Dec. 31, 2017, had $362 billion in assets under care, of which it managed $37 billion for individuals, corporations and not-for-profit organizations through its Trust and Registered Investment Advisory businesses. Investor information and press releases can be viewed at Fifth Third’s common stock is traded on the Nasdaq® Global Select Market under the symbol “FITB.” Fifth Third Bank was established in 1858. Member FDIC.


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Media Contacts

West Michigan Sports Commission:

Katy Tigchelaar

Kim Skeltis, Blue Blaze PR

Meijer State Games of Michigan:

Eric Engelbarts, II

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