Out of the Darkness Chicagoland Walk


Sat, October 21, 2023 | 11:00am Start
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The Out of the Darkness Chicagoland Walk is a special event that provides community, connection, healing, and hope for survivors of suicide loss and those with lived experience.

By registering for the walk, you are joining a strong community united in an effort to fight suicide while showing up for yourself, recognizing and honoring those you love, raising awareness, educating communities, supporting one another, and sharing hope.

Every dollar you raise through the Chicagoland Walk allows AFSP to invest in life-saving research, education, advocacy, and support for those impacted by suicide.

In addition to the in-person walk, we will have a virtual option.

This page includes all the information you will need to participate in the Out of the Darkness Chicagoland Walk on Saturday, October 21, 2023 at Montrose Harbor in Chicago.


Walk Date: 10/21/2023
Walk Location: Montrose Harbor – Chicago, IL
Event Begins: 9:00 am
Stage Program & Honor Bead Ceremony: 10:30 am
Walk Start Time: 11:00 am
Event Ends: 1:00 pm

  • Location:  Montrose Harbor, 601 W. Montrose Ave., Chicago, IL 60613
  • The route is 3 miles and starts and ends at the event site.

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  • We encourage participants to create signs at home to carry along the route. Add messages and photos to honor loved ones, celebrate yourself, inspire hope, and raise awareness.  (Please use safe messaging and no profanity.)
  • Masks are not required but are welcomed and encouraged for the health and safety of our participants, volunteers, and staff, we encourage everyone to wear a mask. If you forget a mask, they will be available on-site. Please remember, if you are not feeling well, stay home.
  • Text 312.802.9714 with any issues.
  • The walk location is just east of Lakeshore Drive at Montrose Avenue and Simonds Drive.

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Mental Health Services Tent sponsored by Compass Health Center

This tent will be located on-site for any participants having a tough time and needing someone to speak with. Please note this is not meant to be a counseling or therapy session.

Education Outreach Tent

Free AFSP resources and small giveaways will be available at this tent.


Honor Beads

Honor Beads

Beads will be available on-site and you can choose your color(s) to show your personal connection and identify with others who understand your experience. 


Raffle Tent

Raffle tickets will be available for purchase. Stop by the Raffle Tent to check out the great items in the drawing. Winners must be present to win.
*Cash, check and credit card will be accepted on-site.

Why We Walk Wall

Leave a message or share a photo on the wall. If you want to share a photo, bring it with you and stop by the Why We Walk Tent for a push pin to place it on the wall. For messages, blank notecards and markers will be provided as well as push pins to place your note on the wall.
*Generously built and donated by John Burns Construction Company.


Blue & Red Ribbon Tent

If you are a Red or Blue Ribbon Walker, please visit the Red and Blue Ribbon Walker Tent to receive your ribbon and gift.

  • $500-$999 – Red Ribbon Walker
  • $1,000+ – Blue Ribbon Walker


T-Shirt Tent

If you raise at least $150 (including day-of donations), you will receive the official walk t-shirt, which can be picked up at the T-Shirt Tent.


Donation Tent

Donations can be turned in and made at the Donation Tent on-site. Donations are 100% tax-deductible. Donations will be accepted through December 31, 2023.

AFSP Store Tent

Looking for AFSP merchandise? Visit the AFSP Store! Cash, check or credit card accepted.

  • From the South and/or West: Take Lake Shore Drive north, exit at Montrose, Wilson or Foster. Follow along to Simonds Drive.
  • From the Northwest: Take I-90 east to Irving Park Ave. Go east to Lakeshore Drive. Go north on Lakeshore Drive and exit Montrose, Wilson or Foster. Follow along Simonds Drive.
  • From the North: Take I-94 south to Peterson. Exit Peterson and go east to Lake Shore Drive. Go south on Lake Shore Drive (Hwy 41). Exit at Foster, Wilson or Montrose. Follow to Simonds Drive.

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  • Free and paid street parking is available on Simonds Drive from Montrose Avenue north to Foster Avenue.
  • The Wilson Lot (left yellow star above) will be rented for the event and will be free on a first come, first serve basis.
  • PLEASE NOTE: The Montrose Lot (right yellow star above) will be closed and not available for parking.
  • #146 Bus route stops at Marine Drive and Montrose
  • CTA Brown line stops at Montrose Ave
  • Plan your trip at www.transitchicago.com

For those unable to attend in-person, we will have a virtual hour-long program so you can walk in your own community and still interact online with fellow participants.

This site will open at 8:00 am (CST) on Saturday, October 21, 2023.

  • Virtual site:  afsp.chicagowalk.org/program-2023
    • Write messages on the virtual Why I Walk Wall, share photos on the virtual Memorial Wall, view the slideshow, shop the AFSP Store, and more.
  • Virtual participants that have raised $150 or more can receive their official walk t-shirt via mail.
    • Complete this form to have your t-shirt mailed to you to arrive within 2-3 weeks after the event.
  • Text 312.802.9714 with any issues.

Looking to connect with active consumers at this event? For pricing and a customized benefits package, please contact Norine Smyth at 312-799-0354 or Laura Wilke at 773-584-6669.

afsp color logoEstablished in 1987, the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (AFSP) is a voluntary health organization that gives those affected by suicide a nationwide community empowered by research, education and advocacy to take action against this leading cause of death.

AFSP is dedicated to saving lives and bringing hope to those affected by suicide, including those who have experienced a loss.  AFSP creates a culture that’s smart about mental health by engaging in the following core strategies:

  • Funding scientific research
  • Educating the public about mental health and suicide prevention
  • Advocating for public policies in mental health and suicide prevention
  • Supporting survivors of suicide loss and those affected by suicide

Led by CEO Robert Gebbia and headquartered in New York, with an Advocacy office in Washington, D.C., AFSP has local chapters in all 50 states and Puerto Rico, with programs and events nationwide. Learn more about AFSP in its latest Annual Report, and join the conversation on suicide prevention by following AFSP on FacebookTwitterInstagram, and YouTube.


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