Mayor Announces “100 Miles with the Mayor” Health Campaign
Walk, Bike and Paddle Events in May Will Highlight Places to be Active and Healthy in Nashville
100 Miles with the Mayor, Schedule
NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Mayor Karl Dean, joined by Olympian Scott Hamilton and BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee, today announced the launch of 100 Miles with the Mayor, a new community-wide health initiative where he will walk, bike and paddle 100 miles across Davidson County over the span of 19 days. Mayor Dean is inviting community members to join him to learn about the many greenways, bikeways and waterways available to them. Today’s announcement was followed by a two-mile walk at the Southeast Community Center with community members.
The 100 Miles with the Mayor events are totally free and will highlight infrastructure improvements during Mayor Dean’s two terms in office that make it easier for people to be active and healthy, including new parks, community centers, greenways, bikeways, mountain bike trails, waterway access points, open space, sidewalks, roads and bridges.
“I always enjoy meeting Nashville families who are interested in doing healthy activities and learning about great places to walk and bike in Nashville during our health campaigns,” Mayor Dean said. “Over the course of these 100 miles, Nashvillians will see that it is easy to be healthy and active all across our city by enjoying the greenways and bikeways in and around their neighborhoods, while also exploring ones they’ve never visited before. By coming together to walk, bike and paddle across our city, we are making a strong statement about our personal health and what it means to the quality of life in our community.”
The health campaign will kick off on Sunday, May 3 with a 3.5-mile walk at the Stones River Greenway followed by a 3.5-mile kayak float down the Stones River. Including today’s 2-mile walk at the Southeast Community Center, there will be a total of 18 events, culminating on May 22 with a lunchtime downtown walk. The events are open to community members of all fitness levels and ages. Information and the full schedule of events is at www.Walk100Miles.com.
Mayor Dean also announced today that Blue Cross Blue Shield of Tennessee has partnered with 100 Miles with the Mayor as presenting sponsor. Dawn Weber, director of Community Relations and Foundations at BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee, joined Mayor Dean at today’s event.
“Supporting efforts that improve the lives of Tennesseans is at the core of our mission at BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee,” Weber said. “The 100 Miles with the Mayor initiative is an exciting and creative way to energize the city through physical fitness. We’re proud to partner with Mayor Dean again to get Nashvillians moving toward a healthier lifestyle.”
Hamilton, of the Scott Hamilton Skating Academy at the Ford Ice Center, also joined Mayor Dean at today’s program. The Nashville Predators’ Ford Ice Center supported today’s walk, which also included an appearance by Gnash. The Southeast Community Center and Park were selected to host today’s event to highlight the investments Mayor Dean has made in that part of Davidson County related to healthy, active living.
Today’s launch of 100 Miles with the Mayor coincides with Metro Public Health Department’s recognition of National Public Health Week, which kicked off April 6.
The new health campaign builds on the momentum of other community-wide health challenges, including Walk 100 Miles with the Mayor, the Mayor’s Challenge 5K Walk/Run and Mayor’s Field Day with the Tennessee Titans.
Different from the Walk 100 Miles with the Mayor campaigns of past years, this initiative is focused less on participants reaching a total of 100 miles and more on bringing these healthy activities into neighborhoods all over Davidson County over a shorter period of time and engaging neighbors, as well as Nashville’s walking, biking and paddling communities.
Mayor Dean’s focus on healthy, active living is designed to call attention to the problems of obesity – particularly childhood obesity. Mayor Dean’s health challenges were inspired in part by First Lady Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move!, a comprehensive initiative dedicated to solving the challenge of childhood obesity within a generation.
Walk 100 Miles with the Mayor has attracted national attention. HBO’s documentary series The Weight of the Nation, released in 2012, spotlighted the first Walk 100 Miles initiative and other efforts to curb obesity and encourage exercise. The film also highlighted Nashville’s extensive investment in developing networks of parks, greenways, bike routes and sidewalks that support healthy living.
Photos courtesy of Metro Photographic Services