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Danbury Promotes Physical Activity, Attendance With Walking School Bus

Park Avenue Elementary School in Danbury. A coalition of community partners is planning a “Walking School Bus” event on Wednesday, May 4 for Park Avenue School.
Park Avenue Elementary School in Danbury. A coalition of community partners is planning a “Walking School Bus” event on Wednesday, May 4 for Park Avenue School. Photo Credit: Contributed

DANBURY, Conn. — A coalition of community partners is planning a “Walking School Bus” event on Wednesday, May 4 with students who attend Park Avenue Elementary School in Danbury.

Children who attend Park Avenue Elementary School, parents and volunteers will gather at 7:30 a.m. at City Hall to make the approximately one-mile walk to the school, picking up other children at stops along the way.

Danbury Mayor Mark Boughton will make opening remarks and join the walk. Children who participate will each receive a pedometer.

The event is co-sponsored by the Coalition for Healthy Kids (CHK), Danbury Public Schools (DPS) and United Way of Western Connecticut (UWWC).

“Walking to school has become less and less common,” said Maureen Farrell, Director of Community Wellness at the Regional YMCA of Western CT and the Chair of the Coalition for Healthy Kids. “We want to remind families and the community that walking to school can be safe, fun, and a great way to add some exercise into your family’s day.”

UWWC is supporting this event as part of its Strong Start Neighborhood Initiative at Park Avenue School. The initiative provides support and funding for playgroups, workshops, an outreach worker, and other activities that promote school readiness and success in the early elementary grades.

Park Avenue School Principal David Krafick said, “Our school has grown in recent years. But we still have many students who can, and should, walk to school when possible. Children who have had a little exercise in the morning are more prepared to learn."

All of the sponsoring community partners intend that the Walking School Bus is more than just a one day event. They would like to see the Walking School Bus become part of the regular routine in the Park Avenue Neighborhood and at other schools in Danbury where walking is a safe form of transportation.

Those who are attending the Walking School Bus event may park at the Danbury Library parking lot or on Deer Hill Avenue.

To learn more about the Walking School Bus concept, click here or visit the National Safe Routes to School website by clicking here .

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