HR Middle Schoolers: ‘Bike or walk to school’

Student body officers and executive council members at Hood River Middle School are encouraging as many kids as possible to walk or bike to school during May, which is National Walk and Bike to School Month.

Student body president Miguel Vasquez and executive council members Jenna Chamness and Hanna Hart are among those providing incentives and encouragement for HRMS students to do so.

“We’re trying to get kids excited about doing it,” Jenna said, “to improve fitness and help the earth’s environment.”

“We’re here early with hot chocolate and snacks — and prizes,” Hannah said. Classes will compete against each other, by filling out cards showing how many school days they have walked or biked to school.

Miguel Vasquez hasn’t had to change his lifestyle much — “I ride every day, or walk, anyway,” he said. “Hopefully lots of kids will participate. And wear helmets!”

The three students remind drivers to be extra careful and watchful during the month of May.

The Healthy Active Hood River County Coalition wants every child and parent to consider participating in the month-long effort — for personal and community health.

If your children have a safe route to walk or bike to school, support them in doing so in May.

Asthma, childhood obesity and diabetes risk have dramatically risen in children with the decrease in children walking and biking to school, and becoming less active in general.

Not all children in our community can walk and bike to school safely. This is because of lack of sidewalks, bike lanes and safe shoulders on roads.

If there is not a safe route, you can support them in being physically active in different ways. Walk or bike with your children where it is safe. Go on a hike together. Play chase.

When possible, instead of hearing “beep,” this month encourage your family to be hearing feet!

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