PRINCETON, WV, OCTOBER 15, 2010:   Bluewell students put on their tennis shoes and rain jackets to participate in Walk to School Day October 6, 2010.  The international event encourages children and parents living near a school to walk rather than drive, and teaches children the personal and environmental benefits of walking.

Participating in International Walk to School Day also marked the official start of Bluewell’s Safe Routes to School program.  Last year, the school was awarded grant funding from the Department of Transportation to improve sidewalks and crosswalks around the school –projects that should be underway by spring – and to encourage students to walk safely to school.

Physical education teacher and program facilitator, Jane Miles- Strickland, solicited sponsors for last week’s event and secured the support of local law enforcement personnel.  Once they arrived at school, students who were transported by bus joined local walkers for a hike around Bluewell’s neighborhood.  Afterwards, healthy refreshments were served in the gymnasium.   

Bluewell principal, Sarah Grose, said approximately 200 children took part in the walk.  “Each class made a banner, and there was competition,” she said.  “We had parents and community members participating, as well.”