Nationwide Movement to Help End Parkinson Disease: 2017 APDA Optimism Walk Series Launches to Raise Critical Funds and Awareness

Thousands Will Walk and Fundraise to Help People with Parkinson’s Live Life to the Fullest

New York, NY, April 3, 2017 – With the launch of Parkinson’s Disease Awareness Month, the American Parkinson’s Disease Association (APDA) officially announces the schedule for the 2017 Optimism Walks — a nationwide movement to mobilize and inspire people to step up and help put an end to PD.  Thousands of participants will walk this year to raise awareness of Parkinson’s disease (PD) and funds to support the American Parkinson Disease Association’s mission to help every person impacted by Parkinson’s disease live life to the fullest.  The 2017 Optimism Walks will take place in cities across the country including, Los Angeles, CA; Virginia Beach, VA; Coconut Creek, FL; Stowe, VT; Boston, MA; Seattle, WA; St. Louis, MO; Madison, WI;  Warwick, RI;  Chicago, IL; Roseville, MN; San Antonio, TX; Westport and West Hartford, CT; and others throughout the United States.

Each APDA Optimism Walk is a fundraising event that offers a short walk (between 1-3 miles, distance varies by location) and an important opportunity for friends, families, and individuals coping with Parkinson’s to take their passion and concern and turn it into a positive experience aimed to help end the devastation of Parkinson’s disease. Optimism Walks offer additional support, educational opportunities, family-friendly activities and the chance to bond with others who are similarly connected.

“There has been great progress in Parkinson’s disease treatments and programs, but there is still much more to be done to end this disease and the challenges endured by those living with Parkinson’s,” said APDA President & CEO Leslie A. Chambers.  “The funds raised through the Optimism Walks will enable APDA to continue providing information, education, and support to those impacted by Parkinson’s disease and fund scientific research into the causes, prevention, treatments and ultimately the cure. Every dollar raised makes an important difference.”

For the 2017 season, the Optimism Walk steps out with a whole new look. As part of a larger organization-wide rebranding effort, the Optimism Walk boasts a brand new logo that compliments the energy and revitalization of the overall APDA rebrand. The new logo will be incorporated into all facets of the Optimism Walk experience, from the moment you register online until you cross the finish line at the Walk itself.

Pharmaceutical companies Lundbeck and AbbVie have joined as National Sponsors of the Optimism Walk 2017 event series. Representatives from both companies will be on hand at every event to meet members of the Parkinson’s community and demonstrate their special commitment to the lives of people with Parkinson’s disease, families and care partners as they work tirelessly to bring innovative solutions to those living with this disease.

In 2016 the Optimism Walk campaign drew thousands of participants and raised more than $700,000 to fund critical research and patient services. The goal for this year’s Optimism Walk campaign is to surpass that and make 2017 the organization’s most successful year yet.

“APDA’s Optimism Walks run from April through October and are a great way for both people with Parkinson’s and the general community to get out for a day of fun and exercise, while playing a part in the fight against this disease,” Chambers said.

To find an Optimism Walk in your area, visit the Optimism Walk section of the APDA website.