Events promote healthy lifestyles

Published 9:45 am Wednesday, July 29, 2009

The City of Austin has scheduled “Park It and Get Fit” events to encourage healthy lifestyles and reduce the community’s carbon footprint.

According to the Austin Coalition for Environmental Sustainability, “Park It” teams are being formed now through Sept. 19. Obtain official rules and “Cool Chances” at or stop by Rydjor Bike shop.  Walk, ride the bus, bike or carpool for chances to win.

A “Be Cool and Get Fit” Family Bike Ride kick-off will be held at 3 p.m. Sunday at Municipal Pool parking lot. The rain date is Aug. 9.

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ACES will hold a “Park It” prize drawing at their booth at the Mower County Fair at noon Sunday, Aug. 16. The booth will be at the Game and Fish Building.

Another prize drawing will be held at 3 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 19 at the ACES booth at RE-Fest at Riverland Community College.

“Cool Chances” will be obtainable at the kick-off Sunday and at the prize drawing events.

Prizes include a YMCA one-year adult membership valued at $500 from the YMCA and Austin Medical Center; a Trek 7000 Bike worth $359 and four $50 gift certificates for Rydjor Bike Shop; 12 $20 bus passes from AMCAT; four $50 gift certificates for Games People Play; and five Austin High School Going Green Club water bottles.

Pick up and drop off “Cool Chances” at AMC, YMCA, Rydjor Bike Shop, AMCAT buses, Games People Play, Hy-Vee, Perkins, Quality Pork Processors, Super Fresh Produce and AHS Going Green Club’s adviser.

With the support of ACES, Mayor Tom Stiehm recently signed a letter addressed to the citizens of Austin: “I encourage you all to participate in the ‘Park It and Get Fit’ events, which run until Sept. 19, 2009,” Stiehm said. “These events are part of the Cool City initiatives that the City of Austin is working on, with the goal of reducing vehicle miles traveled and therefore our community’s carbon footprint, and encouraging healthy lifestyles at the same time.

“On Sept. 17, 2007, I signed the ‘U.S. Mayors Climate Protection Agreement’ with the unanimous support of the Austin City Council, making Austin the 29th ‘Cool City’ in Minnesota. There will be many steps in the process, but with your involvement, we can make Austin a ‘Cool City’ and reduce our greenhouse gas emissions.

“I encourage everyone to participate in ‘Park It and Get Fit.’ Help us to become a healthier community with a smaller carbon footprint.”