Saint Louis Walkersformerly "St. Louis-Stuttgart Volksmarch Club"

FUN, FITNESS, & FRIENDSHIP
Member of the American Volkssport Association (AVA)
and the International Federation of Popular Sports (IVV)
SCROLL TO THE END FOR OUR MEMBERSHIP APPLICATION

The Saint Louis Walkers Club is about
Fun, Fitness, & Friendship!
Come Walk With Us In 2021!

NOTE: Unless otherwise noted, walks listed below offer both a 5k or a 10k route. $3/walker. Pets are welcome on SOME, but not all the walks. Contact the club to be sure.

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NEW AVA GUIDELINES TO LIMIT THE SPREAD OF COVID-19 DURING GROUP WALKS:

REGISTRATION will likely be conducted outside. Line up single file six feet apart. Masks are required at registration. Put $3 cash or a check and your completed Start Card inside a bag that will be nearby. Bring your own pen and hand sanitizer. Hand sanitizer and sanitizing wipes will be available at the Registration.

We are required to keep a maximum of ten walkers per group. If we have more than ten, we will need to break up the group and stagger departures by about 5-10 minutes.

Walkers are advised to stay six feet apart on the trail. Masks are optional but strongly encouraged to be worn when around others. Be sure to use your hand sanitizer when using restrooms or porta-potties.

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WALK WITH THE ILLINOIS TREKKERS ON TREKKIN' TUESDAYS. Diane Prost is coordinating these walks. Click HERE to get to their website for up-to-the-minute details.

THREE-MILE THURSDAYS STARTED UP AGAIN IN APRIL. They are listed below, but for last-minute updates, please call Trudy at 618-670-6920.

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SEPTEMBER 16 - WALK WITH THE ILLINOIS TREKKERS ON THREE-MILE THURSDAY AT THE SHRINE OF OUR LADY OF THE SNOWS. Meet to register at the Shrine Guest House at 5:45. Start walking at 6 pm. $3/walker. Bring a flashlight. For more information, click HERE.

SEPTEMBER 18 - WALK WITH THE ILLINOIS TREKKERS IN HISTORIC COLUMBIA, ILLINOIS. Meet and register at the Masonic Lodge #474, 1207 N. Main Street at 8:45. Walk at 9 am. $3/walker. For more information, click HERE.

SEPTEMBER 18 - WALK WITH THE GATEWAY MILERS IN HERMANN, MISSOURI. Registration is by OSB (ONLINE START BOX) only. The meeting place is 421 Wharf Street in Hermann. That's by Riverfront Park and Hermann Station. We're meeting at 9:45, stepping off at 10 am. $3/walker. For more information click HERE. This is our last group walk in Hermann. We are retiring this walk in 2022.

SEPTEMBER 21 - WALK WITH THE ILLINOIS TREKKERS IN "OLD TOWN" GLEN CARBON. Meet and register at the Glen Carbon Librdary, 198 S. Main Street, at 8:45 and walk at 9 am. $3/walker. For more information, click HERE.

SEPTEMBER 21 - WALK WITH MARY PTACEK'S TATER TOTS IN UNIVERSITY CITY. The tour bus arrives on the 21st with about 45 walkers. Please come and join us. We should begin walking at 10:30 in the parking area behind the former Cicero's Restaurant. For any questions, please email DeAnne at deeebee333@gmail.com.

SEPTEMBER 22 - WALK WITH MARY PTACEK'S TATER TOTS IN FOREST PARK AND THE CENTRAL WEST END. Please join us at the Visitors Center in Forest Park at 9 am. $3/walker. For more information, please email DeAnne at deeebee333@gmail.com. Please note that reservations have been made for the Zoo for all of the Tater Tots. If you would like to join this happy group of walkers, please make reservations for the Zoo for yourself ahead of time at stlzoo.com under the tab Tickets. The time to enter is 9 am-noon, but once in the Zoo, you can stay until closing at 5 pm. Although tickets are needed, there is no charge for them. The Cathedral Basilica in the Central West End is open for visitors from 1-5 pm. Donations would be welcome, but are not required.

SEPTEMBER 23 - WALK WITH MARY PTACEK'S TATER TOTS IN DOWNTOWN ST. LOUIS. Since the Tater Tots are staying at the Pear Tree Inn where our walk route starts, there is no set time to begin walking. We are not anticipating a group walk because people are here to also tour, see the sights. Some may want to do one thing, some another. If you would like to walk with DeAnne and Gordon, please send an email to us at deeebee333@gmail.com.

SEPTEMBER 23 - WALK WITH THE ILLINOIS TREKKERS ON THREE-MILE THURSDAY IN THE PARKS OF O'FALLON, ILLINOIS. Meet and register at Schnucks, 907 E. Hwy 50 in O'Fallon at 5:45 pm. Begin walking at 6 pm. $3/walker. For more information, click HERE.

SEPTEMBER 25 - WALK WITH THE GATEWAY MILERS IN O'FALLON, ILLINOIS. Meet at the YMCA, 284 N. Seven Hills Road at 8:45. The walk begins at 9 am. $3/walker. For more information click HERE.

SEPTEMBER 25 - WALK WITH THE ILLINOIS TREKKERS IN BELLEVILLE, ILLINOIS. This is the walk that goes through Downtown, the Historic District, and Richland Creek Greenway. Meet at Balance Coffee and Tea, 732 S. Illinois Street at 8:45 am. Step off at 9 am. $3/walker. For more information, click HERE.

SEPTEMBER 28 - WALK WITH THE ILLINOIS TREKKERS IN JEFFERSON BARRACKS, MISSOURI. Meet at Walgreens, 2700 Telegraph Road in Lemay, MO at 8:45 am. Begin walking at 9 am. $3/walker. For more information, click HERE.

SEPTEMBER 30 - WALK WITH THE ILLINOIS TREKKERS IN MARYVILLE, ILLINOIS ON THREE-MILE THURSDAY. Meet at the CMT YMCA, 1 Town Center Drive in Maryville at 5:45 pm. Begin walking at 6 pm. $3/walker. For more information, click HERE.

OCTOBER 2 - WALK WITH THE ILLINOIS TREKKERS IN LEBANON, ILLINOIS DURING THE CRAFT FESTIVAL. Meet at the Visitors Center, 221 St. Louis Street 8:30-11 am. Mark your calendars for this very fine Traditional Event walk. $3/walker. For more information please click HERE.

OCTOBER 3 - WALK WITH WALKING ADVENTURES IN CUBA, MISSOURI. You are welcome to join this vanload of walkers from across the country as they walk the City of Murals. Walking Adventures is following Route 66 from Chicago to Santa Monica, and Cuba was an important stop on Route 66. Cuba is specially sanctioned for Walking Adventures and they can stamp your books. If you want to walk with them, please call Dan Friesen at 360-909-2673 to make arrangements on place and time. This may be the last chance to walk Cuba, Missouri because the original sanctioning club no longer exists.

OCTOBER 9 - WALK WITH THE GATEWAY MILERS IN CLAYTON, MISSOURI. Meet to register at the South Pavilion in Shaw Park at 9 am. The group walk will leave together at 9:15 or 9:30. Park on Shaw Park Drive. This is a new Traditional Event walk. $3/walker. For more information click HERE. To download a brochure, click HERE.

OCTOBER 16 - WALK WITH THE ILLINOIS TREKKERS IN SWANSEA'S CLINTON HILLS RECREATION PARK, SWANSEA, ILLINOIS. This is a new Traditional Event walk! Register at 1524 Clinton Hills Parkway in Swansea from 8:30-11. $3/walker. For more information, click HERE.

OCTOBER 19 - WALK WITH THE ILLINOIS TREKKERS IN "OLD TOWN" GLEN CARBON, ILLINOIS. Meet to register fat 8:45 at the Glen Carbon Library, 198 S. Main Street. We step off at 9. $3/walker. For more information click HERE.

OCTOBER 21 - WALK WITH THE ILLINOIS TREKKERS ON THREE MILE THURSDAY AT ST. CLAIR SQUARE. Meet to register at 5:45 pm. We step off at 6 pm. Please bring a flashlight. Meet at St. Clair Square South parking lot, 164 St. Clair Square in Fairview Heights. $3/walker. For more information, please click HERE.

OCTOBER 23 - WALK WITH THE ILLINOIS TREKKERS IN ST. CHARLES, MISSOURI. Meet to register at the Best Western Plus The Charles Hotel, 1425 S. 5th Street in St. Charles at at 8:45 a.m. We drive to the Walk Start at the Boathouse. $3/walker. For more information, click HERE.

OCTOBER 23 - WALK WITH THE GATEWAY MILERS IN BELLEVILLE, ILLINOIS AND SEE "ART ON THE SQUARE." Meet at the YMCA, 200 S. Illinois Street at 9:45. Start walking at 10 am. $3/walker. For more information click HERE.

OCTOBER 26 - WALK WITH THE ILLINOIS TREKKERS IN EDWARDSVILLE, ILLINOIS. Register at 8:45 am at the YMCA, 2100 Esic Drive in Edwardsville. We start walking at 9 am. $3/walker. For more information, please click HERE.

OCTOBER 28 - WALK WITH THE ILLINOIS TREKKERS ON THREE MILE THURSDAY AT ST. CLAIR SQUARE. Meet to register at 5:45 pm. We step off at 6 pm. Please bring a flashlight. Meet at St. Clair Square South parking lot, 164 St. Clair Square in Fairview Heights. $3/walker. For more information, please click HERE.

OCTOBER 30 - WALK WITH THE ILLINOIS TREKKERS IN DOWNTOWN ST. LOUIS. Meet at the Pear Tree Inn, 2211 Market Street, St. Louis at 8:45 to register. Registration can also be done through OSB (Online Start Box). Step off at 9 am. $3/walker. For more information, click HERE.

OCTOBER 31 - SUNDAY - WALK WITH THE SAINT LOUIS WALKERS IN BELLEFONTAINE CEMETERY AND ARBORETUM. We sponsor this walk every other year. How relevant to walk in a cemetery on Halloween, but, please, no costumes of any kind are allowed. This walk will be on a Sunday for the convenience of the cemetery. Well-behaved dogs are welcome (clean up, of course), but they are not allowed inside buildings. Register from 10 am to 1 pm. We must finish by 4 pm. Cemetery gates are locked at 5 pm. Mark the date and times on your calendar. $3/walker. For more information, please contact Dee or Leonard at (618) 530-3325 or send an email to DeAnne at deeebee333@gmail.com. To download the brochure, click HERE.

We have a new trail and a larger parking area with amenities. Two or three crypts will be open to view with volunteers telling the stories. Volunteers will be ready to conduct tours in addition to our walk. Bellefontaine is also a Level II Accredited Arboretum. Besides being a garden of beauty, inspiration, and historic significance, Bellefontaine has an accessible and diverse horticultural collection and has become an important natural sanctuary and habitat for wildlife in the urban environment. You can make a day of it--there is so much to see in this beautiful, peaceful place!

Bellefontaine Cemetery and Arboretum is located at 4947 West Florissant Avenue, St. Louis, Missouri. For more information about Bellefontaine, call 314-381-0750.

NOVEMBER 5-7 - WALK WITH THE GATEWAY MILERS ON THEIR WEEKEND TRIP TO COLUMBIA, MISSOURI. The itinerary is still being developed, but a University of Missouri walk and hiking at parks in the area look like they will be included. On Sunday, walk the Jefferson City Year-Round Capitol walk and then enjoy Central Dairy's famous ice cream!

Interested? Hurry and book your reservation at Drury Plaza Hotel Columbia East. The Drury has a complimentary hot breakfast plus evening drinks and snacks. The rate is $126 for a King Bed Deluxe Room or $135 for a two-Queen Bed Deluxe. The Group name is "Gateway Milers" and the group code is 2442255. You may make your reservation online at www.druryhotels.com or phone 573-441-0090. If you make a reservation using the group rate, please email Cindy Stucky at clstucky8890@gmail.com so she can track the number of rooms remaining in the block.

Please note that the ONLY AVA-sanctioned walk on this weekend trip is the one in Jefferson City.

NOVEMBER 13 -WALK WITH THE GATEWAY MILERS IN CUIVRE RIVER STATE PARK IN TROY, MISSOURI. Meet at the Visitors Center, 678 MO-147 in Troy at 9:45. We will begin walking at 10. Registration is made ONLY by OSB (Online Start Box). $3/walker. For more information. click HERE.

NOVEMBER 22 - MONDAY - WALK WITH THE ILLINOIS TREKKERS AT THE NATIONAL SHRINE OF OUR LADY OF THE SNOWS IN THE EVENING. The Way of Lights Christmas lights will be lit for the first time for us walkers. If you start while it's still daylight, you can watch as the lights gradually turn on. $3/walker. For more information, click HERE.

NOVEMBER 27 - WALK WITH THE GATEWAY MILERS IN JEFFERSON BARRACKS IN LEMAY, MISSOURI. Meet to register at Walgreens, 2700 Telegraph Road 63125 at 9:15. Step off at 9:30. $3/walker. For more information, please click HERE.

DECEMBER 31 (Friday) - CELEBRATE NEW YEAR'S EVE WITH THE ILLINOIS TREKKERS IN MASCOUTAH, ILLINOIS. A special walk is being planned. Mark your calendars!

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REGIONAL TRIPS

Mid-America Regional Conference in Dayton, Ohio will be held June 17-19, 2022. For more information, please go the Gateway Milers' website, www.gatewaymilers.org or to the Illinois Trekkers' website, www.illinois-trekkers.org.

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THE SUNFLOWER SOD STOMPERS OF TOPEKA, KANSAS INVITE YOU TO JOIN THEM FOR TWO FALL WALKS:

1) THE I-35 CORRIDOR WALKING
WEEKEND , SEPTEMBER 18-19

2) HOOFING AT HALLOWEEN,
OCTOBER 29, 30, & 31

Note that lots of local events are scheduled for these two weekends. Terri Tyler has reserved blocks of rooms to be sure you have a hotel, but she urges you to make your reservations ASAP. For more information, email Terri at tltyler50@gmail.com

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The Gateway Milers invite you to join them on a walking/hiking weekend in Columbia, Missouri, on the campus of Mizzou and in the parks nearby, with an AVA-sanctioned walk in Jefferson City on Sunday. This is the weekend of November 5-7. Details are on the chronological walk list above.

Events updated September 15, 2021

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Walk our **Year-Round Events (YREs) or Seasonal Event Walks (SEs) solo or with your family/friends whenever you want. Go to the locations below and follow the instructions. Because of Covid-19 restrictions, some access to some of our walks may still be changing. $3/walker

Belleville, Downtown, Historic District & Richland Creek Greenway - Register at Balance Coffee, 732 S. Illinois St, Belleville, IL. Because of Covid, walkers should not enter the coffee shop. Instead, call them at 618-641-9900 and someone will bring the binder to you. When you are finished registering, call them again and someone will come out to your car to pick it up. Please consider buying a drink or a food item from their drive-through as a Thank You. - Sponsored by The Illinois Trekkers. POC: Susan Hodgson, 618-416-5533.

Belleville, IL (East) - Register at BE YMCA, 2627 Carlyle Ave, Belleville, IL - Walk or Bike - Sponsored by The Illinois Trekkers. The YMCA is open. The Walk Binder is at the desk. POC: Packy and Susan Botula 618-236-9521.

Belleville, IL, The National Shrine of Our Lady of the Snows - Sponsored by The Illinois Trekkers. ALERT: The Shrine Guesthouse is now OPEN! The Walk Binder is at the desk. The address of the Shrine Guesthouse is 451 S. DeMazenod Drive. The Shrine Restaurant has closed permanently. POC: Trudy Duffman, 618-670-6920.

Belleville, Oakland Historic District - Register at the YMCA, 200 S. Illinois Street, Belleville - ALERT: Open to members only. Sponsored by The Gateway Milers.

Central West End, St. Louis - Sponsored by the Saint Louis Walkers. POCs DeAnne and Gordon have the Walk Box. Please call us at 314-878-8647. You can come by our home to register or send an email to me at deeebee333@gmail.com and we can make other arrangements. During this time of pandemic, walkers can also pencil in their walks in their books to be stamped and paid for at a later date. The Online Start Box (OSB) is also available for registration. The Visitors Center, 5595 Grand Drive in Forest Park, is open only for restroom use. The walk starts at the Visitors Center.

Columbia, IL Downtown - A Walk in Historic Columbia. Register at the Columbia Police Department, 1020 N. Main Street - Sponsored by The Illinois Trekkers. POC: Sue Bacon 571-345-8301.

Creve Coeur Park - Sponsored by the Saint Louis Walkers. POCs DeAnne and Gordon have the Walk Box. Please call us at 314-878-8647 or email me at deeebee333@gmail.com and we can make other arrangements. The Online Start Box (OSB) is also available for registration. You can also pencil it in your book to be stamped and paid for at a later date. Restrooms and porta potties are available in the park. Use hand sanitizer. Walk around one lake for a 5K, walk around both lakes for a 10K. This walk is level and is a favorite because there are so many activities in the park.

Edwardsville, IL - A Walk to Edwardsville Parks (Walk/Swim) - Register at the YMCA, 1200 Esic Drive. - Sponsored by The Illinois Trekkers. ALERT: The YMCA is open only to members, but the POC has the Walk Binder. Call Vickie at 618-792-3881 to make arrangements.

Edwardsville, IL - Register at the Edwardsville Library, 112 S. Kansas St, Edwardsville, IL - Sponsored by The Gateway Milers. ALERT: The Edwardsville library is closed to all customers. Walkers call the library at: 618-692-7556 when you arrive and the staff will bring out the walk binder. When done with the binder contact the library staff again and they will come out to get the binder.

Fairview Heights, IL - St. Clair Square Mall - Register at Walgreens, 6505 North Illinois Street, Fairview Heights. Sponsored by The Illinois Trekkers. ALERT: The Mall is OPEN but has limited hours. Call the mall for up-to-date info on their hours. Right now, the hours are: 11am-7pm M-S and noon-6pm on Sunday but these hours can change. POC: Trudy Duffman, 618-670-6920.

Forest Park - Sponsored by the Saint Louis Walkers. POCs DeAnne and Gordon have the Walk Box. You can come by our home to stamp. Please call us at 314-878-8647 first or email me at deeebee333@gmail.com and we can make other arrangements. The Online Start Box (OSB) is also available for registration. During this pandemic, you can also pencil the walk in your book to be stamped and paid for at a later date. The Visitors Center, at 5595 Grand Drive in Forest Park, is open only for restroom use. The walk starts at the Visitors Center. NOTE: Our pre-Covid route goes into the Zoo. Dogs are not permitted in the Zoo. However, if you avoid the Zoo (Covid restrictions require reservations), you can bring your dog as long as it does not enter buildings. Just add on about 1/4 mile wherever you please to make up the distance.

Glen Carbon, IL - Old Town Walk. Register at Casey's General Store, 70 W. Main Street in Glen Carbon and drive to the Start, which begins outside the Glen Carbon Centennial Library, 198 S. Main Street. Park for free at the library. Sponsored by The Illinois Trekkers. It's a good idea to call Casey's to verify their hours before you drive there. POC: Susan Hodgson, 618-416-5533.

Jefferson Barracks National Cemetery and Park - Register at Walgreens, 2700 Telegraph, Lemay, MO - Sponsored by the Illinois Trekkers. NOTE: Do not bring your dog. Dogs are not allowed in National Cemetery. POC: Sue Bacon, 571-345-8301.

Jefferson City, MO, Capital Walk - This walk has an ONLINE START BOX (OSB). Sponsored by the Saint Louis Walkers. For information on how the OSB works and how to register, please click HERE. POCs: DeAnne and Gordon Brown, 314-878-8647.

Kirkwood, MO - Register at the Kirkwood Library, 140 E. Jefferson Ave, Kirkwood, MO - Sponsored by The Gateway Milers. ALERT: The POC has the Walk Box. Call Cindy at 636-208-3425.

Marthasville, MO - ONLINE START BOX. Seasonal walk, March 1-December 31. Sponsored by the Saint Louis Walkers. See the above link under Jefferson City for instructions on how to register online. POC: DeAnne and Gordon Brown, 314-878-8647.

Maryville, IL - Register at CMT YMCA, 1 Town Center Drive, Maryville, IL - Sponsored by The Illinois Trekkers. ALERT: The YMCA is open only for members. The POC has the Walk Binder. Call Vickie at 618-792-3881.

O'Fallon, IL - Register at the YMCA, 284 N. Seven Hills Road, O'Fallon, IL - Sponsored by The Gateway Milers. ALERT: The walk is temporarily suspended. Click HERE for updated information.

O'Fallon, IL - Walk in the Parks - Sponsored by The Illinois Trekkers. ALERT: Schnucks' Customer Service Counter is closed, but Nikki, POC, has the Walk Binder. Please call Nikki at 618-973-3825. You can contact Nikki or just keep track of your walks in your IVV books and stamp and pay later. Schnucks is located at 907 E. Hwy 50 in O'Fallon.

Richmond Heights, MO - Register at Richmond Heights Community Center, 8001 Dale Ave, St. Louis - Sponsored by the Gateway Milers. ALERT: The Rec Center is closed indefinitely due to COVID-19 although the restrooms may be open.

St. Charles, MO - Sponsored by the Sunflower Sod Stompers of Topeka, KS. There is a new Start location: Best Western Plus The Charles Hotel, 1425 S. 5th Street, St. Charles. Phone: 636-946-6936. This new Start/Finish is on the west side of 5th; the original Start/Finish site was on the east side of 5th, now a construction site. Walkers drive from the Best Western and park at the Lewis & Clark Boathouse and Museum where the walk starts. That address is 1050 South Riverside Drive. There are a few changes on the route. Almost all restaurants and shops on Main Street are open. For the latest information, please call Trudy at 618-670-6920.

St. Louis - Downtown - Sponsored by the Saint Louis Walkers. Register at the Pear Tree Inn by Drury, 2211 Market St., St. Louis, MO - Our Walk Box is at the front desk. NOTE: Please DO NOT bring dogs. They are not allowed in the buildings that we pass through on the trail. The tunnel leading to the Lumiere Casino (restrooms) is open now (it has been closed during most of this year due to Covid restrictions). You are welcome to visit any of the public museums along the route: Soldiers Memorial (free), St. Louis Public Library (free and like a palace), The Arch (small admission fee), the Arch Museum (free), the museum at the Old Cathedral (very small admission fee), the Old Courthouse (free). Restrooms are available in most of these buildings, but their hours may be restricted due to the pandemic. The phone number for the Pear Tree Inn St. Louis Near Union Station (their listed name) is 314-241-3200. This walk is also available as an Online Start Box. POCs: DeAnne and Gordon Brown. For more information, send an email to deeebee333@gmail.com.

Springfield, IL - Capitol Walk- OPEN! Register at the Carpenter Street Hotel, 525 N. 6th Street in Springfield. POCs: Dee and Leonard Wojtysiak, 618-530-3325.

University City, MO - Sponsored by The Gateway Milers. - POCs DeAnne and Gordon have the Walk Box. You can come by our house to register. Please call us at 314-878-8647 first or email me at deeebee333@gmail.com and we can make other arrangements. The Online Start Box (OSB) is also available for registration. During this pandemic, you can also pencil the walk in your book to be stamped and paid for at a later date. NOTE: The Washington University campus is closed to visitors. Therefore, walkers will walk around the perimeter of the campus. The distance is the same.

Washington, MO - Sponsored by the Saint Louis Walkers. Register as an Online Start. The start of the walk begins at the Amtrak Station, 301 W. Front Street, Washington. We did have the Walk Box at the Amtrak station but it was stolen, so we cannot register physically there. This is a seasonal walk, March 1-December 31. POCs: DeAnne and Gordon Brown, 314-878-8647.

Webster Groves, MO - Register at the Webster Groves Parks and Recreation Center, 33 E. Glendale, Webster Groves, MO - Sponsored by the Gateway Milers. ALERT: The Rec Center is closed indefinitely due to COVID-19.

History of the Saint Louis Walkers (formerly St. Louis-Stuttgart Volksmarch Club)

Why did we have that funny name?

Why do we use red, black, and gold?

Volkssporting (meaning "people's sports"--could be walking, running, swimming, biking) was brought to the United States by servicemen and women who had been stationed in Germany and who came to love the German sport of group walking. The first walk in this country was June 12, 1976 in Fredericksburg, Texas. (The stamp number for that walk is 0001.) Volksmarching spread rapidly in the years that followed.

In 1986 St. Louis-Stuttgart Sister Cities Club formed a sub-committee in order to organize a Volksmarch club to introduce St. Louisans to that popular German tradition. Its mission was to organize 10 kilometer (6.2 miles) walks in keeping with the guidelines of the American Volkssport Association (AVA)--which we now call "America's Walking Club"--and the International Volkssport Verband (IVV).

The initial walk in October 1986 had a surprising turnout of over 500 walkers. Inspired by success, the sub-committee walked themselves into a freestanding organization with their own officers (but still affiliated with the St. Louis-Stuttgart Committee) and opened membership. The group scheduled six to eight single-day walks each year (Traditional Events) and also set up three separate year-round events (YREs, walks that can be done 365 days/year) in Downtown St. Louis, the Central West End, and Ferguson. Since 1986 this club has sponsored over 200 walks and has registered more than 30,000 people from across the U.S. and from many foreign countries.

Over the years a number of other Volkssport clubs were formed in the Greater St. Louis area. After some time there were over eight clubs hosting walks in the St. Louis area and in southern Illinois. As Volkssporting grew, the national organization grew, and our club grew. The AVA began hosting a national convention every two years, and members of St. Louis-Stuttgart attended and represented our club in business affairs and voting. Two of our club members became regional directors in the national organization: Victor Shaff and Ed Tod. Volkssporting also spread through Canada, organized under the Canadian Volkssport Federation. The AVA and the CVF alternate conventions every two years.

In recent years, Volkssporting has lost some of its popularity as other organized sports, running, and children's activities have displaced walking. Nevertheless, our club continued and this year, 2021, we will celebrate our 35th anniversary. Every year we plan a number of traditional events and we have seven YREs or seasonal walks, including two of the original walks: Downtown and the Central West End. As of 2021, we have Online Start Boxes (OSL) for all our walks.

Because we are no longer associated with the St. Louis-Stuttgart Sister Cities Club or with the German Club here in St. Louis and for simplification, the club voted in January 2020 to change our name to the Saint Louis Walkers. The coronavirus pandemic slowed everything down to a crawl, but our name change was finally approved by the Secretary of State for the State of Missouri in early 2021.

We welcome new walkers and new members. Scroll below for a membership form. Please join us in enjoying this fun and very healthy sport.

And we use red, black, and gold for the colors of the German flag!

What some walkers say about walking with the AVA clubs:

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We walk because it is good for us and AVA makes it fun. We meet people and see things we wouldn't see otherwise. We walk mostly for our health--we can eat more!

David Bonewitz, PhD, Former AVA Board President
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I controlled my diabetes and lost weight. I kept my blood sugar down. I have seen so many interesting and historic places all around the country. I have explored and hiked with my own family. There are so many wonderful sights to see!

Nancy Wittenberg, AVA Board President
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Volkssporting is an important part of my life. I learned a lot traveling, walking in new places. I get to walk in the country and in the cities. All over the world, I have Volksmarched. It is important to keep a healthy balance and Volksmarching does that.

Ellen Ott
President of the Randolph Roadrunners
Volksmarching Club

Contact us
Feel free to send us an email with your questions or comments.

OFFICERS OF THE SAINT LOUIS WALKERS:

DeAnne Brown, President - deeebee333@gmail.com - 314-878-8647

Dee Wojtysiak, Vice President - drw48@icloud.com - 618-530-3325

Leonard Wojtysiak, Secretary - lpw46@icloud.com - 618-530-3211

Gordon Brown, Treasurer and TrailMaster - brownstl@swbell.net - 314-878-8647

Membership is $6/year/walker or $12/household. Be sure to include your address, phone number, and email, list the members of your family who live with you, and send a check for $6 or $12, payable to Saint Louis Walkers to: Gordon Brown, Treasurer, 12448 Glenbush Drive, Maryland Heights, MO 63043.

CLICK this link to download a 2021 Membership application.

MEETINGS IN 2021

Due to the highly contagious nature of the coronavirus, we cannot hold indoor meetings. We meet on Zoom on the second Wednesday every other month at 7 pm. We will most likely continue meeting on Zoom even after the pandemic eases.

Our next meeting will be August 11 at 7 pm. Members of Saint Louis Walkers will receive a link to this Zoom meeting by email a day or two before the meeting. Our meetings are open to all members.

Go to our Facebook page for photos and last-minute information. We're under "GROUPS" on Facebook. Press f or CONNECT FACEBOOK below:

Hours
  1. Monday
    9:00am
    10:00pm
  2. Tuesday
    9:00am
    10:00pm
  3. Wednesday
    9:00am
    10:00pm
  4. Thursday
    9:00am
    10:00pm
  5. Friday
    9:00am
    10:00pm
  6. Saturday
    9:00am
    6:00pm
  7. Sunday
    9:00am
    12:00pm
Thanks for submitting!