a community partnership


Freedom Fest began in 2003 by Emporia Main Street volunteers to honor all Veterans and their families through a series of competitive, physical and community gathering events as part of the  of the All Veterans Tribute week.  The All Vets Tribute is  held annually throughout the founding city of Veterans Day, Emporia, Kansas. (Learn more about All Veterans Day - Founding City Emporia, Kansas).  Emporia Freedom Fest is held the Sunday before All Veterans Day with all events starting and ending at the Emporia All Veterans Memorial.


Originally a small and informal 5K run/walk, the event is now a 5k Freedom Run/Walk,  a 16 mile or 40 mile Freedom Ride (self-paced) through the Flint Hills and a unique, very competitive, physically challenging, and rewarding three event competition called the Spur Challenge.


The Freedom Run/Walk

Now in it's 16th year, this timed event provides recreational and competitive opportunities for all ages and abilities.  All Freedom Run/Walk participants will receive the 2018 Freedom Fest shirt if registered by Friday, October 20th. The top three finishers in each category will receive Emporia Main street gift certificates, and the overall top three Men and Women will receive a customized trophy designed by the FHTC Welding program. 

SGT Timmerman and IKE 16 AND 40 Freedom Rides

Participants can choose to enjoy a leisurely ride of 16 or 40 miles through the beautiful Flint Hills. You can ride just for fun and for personal self development.  All Freedom Ride participants who register on or before Friday, October 20th, will receive the 2018 Freedom Fest shirt. All Freedom Ride finishers will receive a customized patch. 


The First Kansas/Will to Win Spur Challenge is a timed and skill based tri-event that grew out of a partnership between the members of of the Emporia Main Street Freedom Fest Committee,  and the directors of the Dirty Kanza (Dirty Kanza Promotions) Jim Cummins and LeLan Dains.  Our joint vision is to provide a premier event that mingles veterans, current members of the military, and community in a challenging series of events resulting in the award of a unique cavalry spur. Net proceeds of the event are donated to a scholarship fund for the children of Kansas Veterans from the 635th Armor and 137th Infantry regiments. (Army/National Guard).

DYNAMIC DISCS Freedom Fest Open (Disc Golf)

Non-sanctioned Disc Golf Tournament/Fundraiser to support US Veterans and to build further awareness of Emporia's role in creating Veterans Day.  Come play the Eric McCabe designed temporary Soden's Grove course! See the registration page and links to learn more.


Started by Emporia Main Street, Freedomfest has partnered for over ten years with organizations such as the City of Emporia, KVOE Family of Radio Stations, Gravel City Adventure and Supply Co, the Emporia Recreation Commission, The All Veterans Memorial Committee, and the local units of the Kansas National Guard.


All events start and finish at the beautiful All Veterans Memorial and Soden's Grove in Emporia Kansas.  All events recognize the sacrifice of All Veterans and their families for our Nation.  Net proceeds are donated to 635th Armor / 137th Infantry Regiment Scholarship Fund and the All Veterans Memorial fund (local /regional charitable funds and organizations.)



Emporia, Kansas is not only the founding city of Veterans day but home to  the beautiful All Veterans Memorial (host site) and many armor, cavalry and combat arms veterans who wish to continue honoring and supporting the current members of the military and veterans.  The Spur Challenge is one of many events held in November during All Veterans Weeks to honor all our Veterans. (See allveteransday.org to learn more)

2019 events

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