GET ACTIVE: Downtown walk offers fun, free fitness

A little exercise can go a long way toward improving your overall health – that’s what the Active People, Healthy Montgomery County Downtown Fun Walk is all about.

“We’re trying to draw attention to the benefits of walking,” said Dan Suffoletto, public information officer, Public Health - Dayton & Montgomery County. “Even a small amount of exercise can have great benefits.”

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, increased physical activity can improve health, quality of life, and reduce health care costs.

“People who are physically active live longer and have a lower risk for heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes, depression, and some cancers,” said Jennifer Wentzel, health commissioner, Public Health - Dayton & Montgomery County. “And a regular routine of walking is an easy way to begin your fitness goals.”

The Downtown Fun Walk can be a great place to get started. The free, non-competitive event includes a group walk from the RiverScape Pavilion to McCook Field and back along the scenic Great Miami River – approximately one mile. The event kicks off at 11 a.m. with a variety of health and fitness organizations in the pavilion – including Kettering Health Network, Downtown Dayton YMCA, City of Kettering Parks & Rec, Vandalia Recreation Center, and Public Health programs including Maternal and Child Health, WIC and Chronic Disease Prevention. Free blood pressure screenings will also be offered.

Free Healthy Living kits will also be distributed to the first 75 participants. Kits include a healthy cookbook, bowls and plates with nutrition information, a measuring spoon, pedometer, towel and healthy snacks.

“Physical activity is one of the most important steps people can take to improve their health,” said Stacy Shern, Chronic Disease Prevention senior manager, Public Health - Dayton & Montgomery County. “This event aligns with the CDC’s Active People, Healthy Nation initiative.”

The national initiative is designed to help 27 million Americans become more physically active by 2027, including 15 million adults who are currently considered inactive taking part in some moderate-intensity activity every day, like brisk walking.

According to the CDC, despite the known health benefits of being physically active, only 50 percent of American adults and about 25 percent of high school students meet the minimum guidelines for aerobic physical activity.

Free, fun and convenient – as downtown residents and employees can do it on their lunch hour – the Active People, Healthy Montgomery County Downtown Fun Walk checks all the boxes.

Active People, Healthy Montgomery County Downtown Fun Walk

What: Free event highlights the healthy benefits of walking. A variety of vendors will be on hand featuring health and fitness information, blood pressure screenings and more.

When: May 25, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., walk from RiverScape to McCook Field begins at 11:45 a.m.

Where: RiverScape MetroPark Pavilion, 237 E. Monument Ave., Dayton

Info: 937-225-5700 or visit

FYI: First 75 participants receive a free healthy living kit

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