CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (August 11, 2016) - Grab you backpack and lace up your shoes, it’s time to register for International Walk to School Day! On October 5, students, families, school and community partners, and mayors around the country will bring light to safety concerns, celebrate the benefits of walking, and mark a special occasion - the 20th celebration of Walk to School Day in the USA.
In 1997, Chicago’s Mayor Daley and Los Angeles’ Mayor Riordan walked with students to school. Since then, hundreds of mayors have hit the sidewalks in October.
As a way to celebrate this event, the National Center is working with the US DOT’s “Mayors Challenge for Safer People, Safer Streets” to encourage mayors nationwide to join the 20th Walk to School Day celebration. Walk to School Day offers a unique opportunity for mayors to talk about their commitment to child and youth pedestrian and bicyclist safety and to discuss how to make their communities more walkable.
Also new this year, we've streamlined Walk to School Day registration so no account log in is required and the process just takes a few steps. Walk to School Day event registration is free and open to all individuals and organizations holding an October event in the United States.
Walk to School Day event registration is free and open to individuals and organizations holding an October event in the United States. Events that register on the Walk to School website, www.walkbiketoschool.org, will be displayed on an interactive U.S. map on the website, where neighboring communities, media and other organizations can identify who is walking in their area.
For more information on Walk to School activities in the U.S., visit www.walkbiketoschool.org.
About the National Center for Safe Routes to School
Established in May 2006, the National Center for Safe Routes to School helps support communities in changing their culture around safe and active travel. The National Center assists states and communities in enabling and encouraging children to safely walk and bicycle to school. Its role includes providing technical support for U.S. Walk to School Day and Bike to School Day; coordinating online registration, developing resources, and facilitating worldwide promotion and participation. Part of the University of North Carolina Highway Safety Research Center, the National Center serves as the information clearinghouse for the Federal Safe Routes to School program with funding from the U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration. For more information, visit www.saferoutesinfo.org or www.walkbiketoschool.org.
About Walk to School Day
In 1997, the Partnership for a Walkable America sponsored the first National Walk Our Children to School Day in Chicago with the aim of bringing community leaders and children together to create awareness of the need for communities to be walkable. In 2000, the event became international when the UK and Canada (both of which had already been promoting walking to school) and the USA joined together for the first International Walk to School Day. The reasons for walking have grown just as quickly as the event itself. For more information, visit www.walkbiketoschool.org.
Colleen V. Oliver
National Center for Safe Routes to School