In Wellington, an event was held in Frank Kitts Park, with three ‘feeder’ sites on main walking routes into town, at Courtenay Place / Taranaki, the Railway Station and Willis Street, where free fruit, coffee vouchers and happy walkers were spotted.
Stepping out in the sun
Wellington’s brilliant weather today encouraged many people walking to work to stop off at Frank Kitts Park to celebrate their journeys on foot.
Over 500 people enjoyed a hot cross bun and coffee as they listened to music from Groove FM, Tessa Rain and speeches, did stretching exercises with Mish McCormack, shook their bodies to Zumba fitness while Ben Tafau from Capital PHO kept things moving as the lively MC. Others were able to get a health check up by City Fitness trainers.
In addition to the main event, there were spots where volunteers handed out apples and vouchers to people on the main commuter walking routes into the city. “Cool idea!” said one walker. “I love my walk to work. I arrive feeling relaxed, refreshed and ready for the day. And it saves me money on petrol too!”
Speakers included the Associate Minister of Transport, Hon. Nathan Guy, Mayor Kerry Prendergast, and Parliament’s newest and youngest MP, Gareth Hughes.
Deputy Mayor Ian McKinnon presented prizes to the Transpower team who won the Summer Steps challenge. The walking challenge was piloted in Wellington during February in collaboration with Greater Wellington’s Active a2b campaign. 37 teams from workplaces around the capital competed during February. The teams logged around 250 walking trips, saving 1275 car journeys.
“More people walking daily to work means fewer cars clogging up the streets,” said Liz Thomas, Director of Living Streets Aotearoa. “This leaves more room for essential business transport, workplace productivity benefits from healthy, alert staff, and people feel better and have more money in their pockets. It’s a win-win solution.”
Living Streets members presented the Hon. Nathan Guy with 2 giant feet on the steps of Parliament later in the morning. They pointed out that walking is the glue that holds the transport system together. Investment in walking is needed to make journeys on foot safer as well as more pleasant.
A huge thank you to all the volunteers involved, the organising committee from Living Streets Aotearoa, Greater Wellington Regional Council, Wellington City Council, Cancer Society and Regional Public Health and our sponsors; Celcius Coffee, Kiwi Green Pak, Pandoro, Capital PHO, Mish Fitness, Fitness DynamiX, Tessa Rain, Shoe Clinic, Prestige Print, Commonsense Organics, City Fitness, NZTA, Zealandia
Liz Thomas, Director Living Streets Aotearoa 021 106 4201 firstname.lastname@example.org
Tania Austin, Coordinator Walk2Work Wellington 021 464 893 www.livingstreets.org.nz
For more images see http://www.livingstreets.org.nz/node/4530