Results from the month-long Mayor’s School Walking Challenge are in. In just one month, 26,745 students from 60 schools in southwestern Idaho walked 177,096 miles. Setting an example for these active students were Idaho mayors from 25 communities who logged 9,682 miles in October.
The month-long “Walktober” event was sponsored by the High Five Children’s Health Collaborative, Idaho Dairy Council and St. Luke’s –
One winning school in each of the eight designated groups won $2,000 for their dedication to health during the month of October. Winning schools were selected based on the highest average miles per student within their designated competition groups.
The winning schools are:
Schools were grouped in geographically similar areas with comparable enrollment. The prizes are earmarked for physical activity or food service equipment. For a complete list of schools, groups and their mileage, please visit http://www.highfiveidaho.org/school-walking-challenge/.
“Kids were excited to walk at school with their mayors, who were inspired to get moving too. Hopefully a month full of fun opportunities will lead to a lifetime of healthy choices,” said Kristin Armstrong, St. Luke’s Health Ambassador.
The Mayor’s School Walking Challenge is designed to improve children’s health by inspiring them to walk or run at school. Mayors act as role models for students and encourage participation throughout the city. Mayors were enticed with $5,000 for physical activity equipment at a school or park.
The winning Mayor is:
Mayor Gordon Petrie of Emmett with a total of 534 miles during the month of October. Petrie averaged 17 miles each day during the challenge. He not only dedicated time to walk before and after work, but also involved his staff by scheduling walking meetings. They also worked activity into their daily routines.
“Competition among both schools and mayors was fierce this year,” said Kendra Witt-Doyle, Blue Cross of Idaho Foundation for Health manager. “But beyond a month of competition, we’re seeing lasting, healthy changes incorporated into schools and city offices. The competition was a gateway into routine fitness. ”
Because of the tremendous amount of participation this year, the Mayor’s School Walking Challenge sponsors decided to award milestone awards for schools and mayors who performed above expected daily averages.
Twelve mayors achieved an average of more than 10,000 steps per day. They each will receive $1,000 to spend toward school or park improvements.
At 24 schools, students averaged five miles or more during the month of October. Each will receive $500 to promote childhood wellness.
“The sponsors were impressed and inspired by the enthusiasm from the schools and mayors who participated Mayors School Walking Challenge,” said Pohley Richey, health and wellness manager with the Idaho Dairy Council. “We hope all of the participants will continue to make strides toward improved health and wellness.”
About High Five Children’s Health Collaborative:
The High Five Children’s Health Collaborative is a state-wide effort to fight childhood obesity in five ways: increase physical activity, improve access to healthy and affordable foods, healthier schools and childcare facilities, educate parents to make healthier choices and promote public policies the fight the cause of obesity. High Five Idaho is working in collaboration to promote healthy communities around the state. In addition, healthful tips and information are available through the Dish + Dash—email with tips on how to stay healthy—as well as on the High Five Idaho website highfiveidaho.org.
About St. Luke’s
Founded as a six-bed frontier hospital in 1902, St. Luke’s Health System has evolved to become Idaho’s largest healthcare provider. Today, St. Luke’s is the only locally governed, Idaho-based, not-for-profit health system with a network of eight full-service hospitals and more than 150 outpatient centers and clinics serving people throughout southern Idaho, eastern Oregon, and northern Nevada. To accomplish our mission of improving the health of the people in our regions, St. Luke’s provides unmatched care in specialized medical fields including cancer, heart and vascular, obstetrics, women’s services, and children’s health care. To learn more, see https://www.stlukesonline.org/
About the Idaho Dairy Council
The Idaho Dairy Council provides nutrition education throughout the Gem State as an organization supported by the United Dairymen of Idaho. The council provides free, science-based nutrition resources to educators, students, health professionals and the public via curriculum, materials, funding, and nutrition instruction. Visit idahodairy.org for more details.