Walk for Wellness set for Sept. 29
People may walk individually or team up with others for a morning of hiking on the River Ridge Trail.
The walk is being organized by the Waupaca ACHIEVE group, Waupaca Chiropractic Center, River Ridge Trail Association, city of Waupaca Parks and Recreation Department and the Walk for Wellness Committee.
Participants may choose to walk one mile, 3.1 miles or 6.2 miles.
"Dr. Jean Rice, Dr. Miriam Leean and other area chiropractors took the lead on this event," said Aaron Jenson, who is the city's recreation program supervisor. "The sponsors and co-sponsors of this event thought the Walk for Wellness would be a good idea because it provides an opportunity for everyone in the community to participate in a non-competitive exercise event."
Rice and Leean, of Waupaca Chiropractice Center, have participated in Walk Wisconsin, a non-competitive walking marathon held each June in Stevens Point.
"I could see Waupaca's River Ridge Trail developing into that type of event," Rice said.
For some time, a group of area chiropractors talked about sponsoring a wellness event.
"We wanted to do something that would not be quite so intimidating as a marathon but challenging to those who maybe do not walk," she said.
Rice attended a River Ridge Trail work day last May and later met with Carol Elvery, a supporter of the trail system.
Elvery told Rice about the $50,000 the city's Parks and Recreation Department received, and the planning for this fall's walk began.
The grant through the National Recreation and Parks Association means the city has now become part of ACHIEVE - Action Communities for Health, Innovation and Environmental Change.
Jenson said this is the first event they are helping with as the ACHIEVE group.
He said ACHIEVE will focus on policy changes within the community. The group will be doing such things as going into worksites and helping with their wellness programs and working to make fresh, healthy food easily available for community members.
"The ACHIEVE group will not be putting on a lot of events but will be happy to sponsor any wellness events in the community," Jenson said.
Helping to promote the first Waupaca Walk for Wellness is Deb Sullivan, who participated in the 1992, 1996 and 2000 Olympics as a race walker.
She was recently in Waupaca for a taping of Win TV's "What's Happening Waupaca." Sullivan joined Jenson in talking about the upcoming walk. The episode airs this month.
Jenson said Sullivan will also be at the Sept. 29 event.
"Her past success as an Olympian race walker is phenomenal to have to help promote the event but more importantly her knowledge and passion to promote the health benefits from something as simple as taking a walk on a regular basis," he said.
Sullivan contacted Rice about being interested in helping with the event after learning about the walk from John Hammond, of WDUX.
After recently finishing her website - www.walklikethis.com - Sullivan was doing radio spots throughout the state to promote it when Hammond told her about Walk for Wellness.
"If you've never walked before, sign up for a mile," she said. "It could be the start of something amazing."
Registration forms for the walk are available at the Waupaca Recreation Center, Waupaca Chiropractic Center and Waupaca Area Chamber of Commerce.
One-mile walks will begin at 8 a.m., 9 a.m and 10 a.m. The 3.1-mile walk will begin at 9:30 a.m., and the 6.2-mile walk will start at 8:30 a.m.
The registration fee is $10 for those age 5 to 12, $15 for those age 13 and older and $50 for a team of four when it is received by Sept. 15. The registration fees after Sept. 15 will be $12 for those age 5 to 12, $20 for those age 13 and older and $60 for teams of four.
Those who register by Sept. 15 will receive a T-shirt.
Checks are payable to Waupaca County Natural Resources Foundation, Inc. Write "Walk for Wellness" in the memo.
Completed registration forms and fees should be sent to Waupaca Walk for Wellness, 304 S. Western Ave. Waupaca, WI 54981.
Proceeds will be directed to the maintenance and development of the River Ridge Trail system.
Those who want to register on the day of the walk may do so beginning at 7:30 a.m. that day at Swan Park.
Rice said those who have questions or are interested in being a sponsor may call Waupaca Chiropractic Center at 715-258-8211.
"We're hoping it becomes an annual event," she said.
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