FirstEnergyAll-American Soap Box Derby Countdown


Soap Box Derby Partners with United Way of Summit County and Fallsway Equipment Company for the 2018 United Way Corporate Derby Challenge presented by Fallsways Equipment Company


The United Way of Summit County and Fallsway Equipment Company will partner with the Soap Box Derby for the 2018 Corporate Derby Challenge (CDC).

This is the Soap Box Derby’s top fundraiser to support the Derby’s mission to build knowledge and character, and to create meaningful experiences through collaboration and fair and honest competition.

“The work of United Way is rooted in building partnerships throughout the community – between local businesses, schools, the public and more – and leveraging those partnerships to create meaningful change for Greater Akron,” said Jim Mullen, president and CEO of United Way of Summit County. “We are proud to support the Corporate Derby Challenge because it inspires businesses to engage with their community, and to invest in the next generation of young professionals.”

“As someone who participated in the Soap Box Derby in 1956, I understand the impact that the Derby can have on your life,” said Harry Fairhurst, owner and chairman of Fallsway Equipment Company. “That year, the Akron Beacon Journal voted my car the best design in the competition. My family still has my car that I raced and my grandson has even enjoyed the opportunity to race my car down Derby Downs. Our families’ interest is why Fallsway Equipment Company is excited to partner with the Soap Box Derby again for the 2018 United Way Corporate Derby Challenge presented by Fallsway Equipment Company. We have enjoyed this unique partnership that has evolved into the biggest fundraiser for the Soap Box Derby. We partner with the Derby because we believe in their mission and the community support that they provide. We actively participate in this event year after year and enjoy the fun of the competition and the networking opportunities it provides.” Set for Friday, July 13, the CDC is a one-of-a-kind event where energy levels are high and competition ignites as team members collaborate to assemble, design, and decorate their very own adult Soap Box Derby car and then compete in a thrilling race down the legendary Derby Downs Track.

Corporations, small businesses, groups, and community organizations participate in this annual event that not only entertains but also gives back to the community. Each team constructs its own adult Soap Box Derby car chassis from a pre-manufactured kit provided by the Soap Box Derby. Once the chassis is assembled, the teams tap into their creativity and imagination to design and complete their own unique cars.

An unveiling reception will occur Thursday, July 12 at Derby Downs where each team will reveal its CDC car and the best designed, constructed and decorated cars will be award first and second place. All in attendance will enjoy appetizers, spirits, and a night of entertainment plus will be the first to see the World Championship cars that will be participating in the 2018 FirstEnergy All-American Soap Box Derby World Championship Race. 

 “We appreciate the United Way and Fallsway Equipment Company partnering with us for the third year in a row to develop this unique fundraising opportunity,” said Derby President & CEO Mark Gerberich. We appreciate that they recognize the value in the All-American and our STEM programs. Through this partnership we are able to bring programs to youth in the community.

 “Plus this is a great opportunity for local organizations to create new partnerships and the opportunity to network during the unveiling reception and then participate in the exciting competition on Friday.” 

For more information about the CDC, visit our website at

Fallsway Equipment Company 5112015

United Way of Summit County