The Partnership for a Walkable America sponsored the first National Walk Our Children to School Day in Chicago in 1997. It was a simple day, designed to highlight the need to create communities that are walkable. The day was created, in part, on a similar concept celebrated in the United Kingdom.
In 2002, the second annual International Walk to School Day was celebrated by children and parents from all 50 states, in partnership with nearly 3 million walkers all around the world. The reasons for walking to school are as plentiful as the people who participate in the event. The focus can be cleaner air, better health or safer streets, but Walk to School Day events are aimed at bringing forth permanent change to encourage a more walkable America.
In 2005, new legislation was passed to make it easier than ever for communities to fund programs that establish safe routes for walking to school.
In a time that has seen rising obesity levels for our children, and less participation in exercise than ever before, International Walk to School Day is a great time to begin a healthier habit. The weather has cooled off in most of the United States, and walking to school is great way to spend time with your children.
Will you join families across the United States and walk to school today?