International “Walk + Bike to School Day” will be celebrated with a news event at Lewis Elementary School in Southeast Portland on Wednesday, October 3, at 8 a.m.. More than 200 children are expected to meet up and walk or bike to school, where teachers, parents and community leaders will talk about the health and safety benefits of being active.
Thousands of other children from the more than 60 Portland schools participating will also be on the streets showing that it’s easy and fun to walk and bike to school.
More than 200 students and parents walking and biking to school will be joined by Principal Tim Lauer, Portland Public School Board Member Greg Belisle, Dr. Lucy Douglass from Kaiser Permanente, Portland Timbers Ambassador Scot Thompson and representatives from the Bicycle Transportation Alliance, Portland Police Bureau and Portland Bureau of Transportation.
Experts say that children need at least 60 minutes of physical activity every day. Sadly, our kids aren’t getting it. Evidence shows that while the rate of children walking and biking to school in America has dropped during the past few decades, the rate of children who are obese has simultaneously tripled. On October 3, the Portland Bureau of Transportation will celebrate eight years of work to reverse this trend with its Safe Routes to School efforts.
Recent reports show 40 percent of the trips to Portland elementary schools are made on foot or by bike. This is a 9 percent increase since Safe Routes to School began and higher than the national average of 12 percent. The Portland Bureau of Transportation is committed to improving childhood health by showing students and families that walking and biking to school is fun, easy and healthy.