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Students celebrate 'Walk to School Day'

Events planned for Oct. 6 and Oct. 7 in Scappoose and St. Helens

Students in Scappoose and St. Helens can participate in International Walk to School Day next week, on Oct. 7.

Scappoose School District nurse Brenda Van Domelen promoted Walk to School Day by posting fliers at the Scappoose High School, Middle School, Grant Watts Elementary School and Otto Petersen Elementary School.

She said she hopes everyone will be able to get out and walk that day to promote physical activity. While the school district does not have a specific event planned, Van Domelen said she has spoken with all the schools to get the word out.

“I’d like to see a lot of visibility in our town,” Van Domelen. “I want to encourage all people to get out and walk, not just students.”

In St. Helens, Claire Catt, nutrition educator with Oregon State University Extension Service in Columbia County, helped plan an event for students from Lewis and Clark Elementary School on Oct. 6. Classes have been canceled Oct. 7 to Oct. 9 for student conferences, so Catt said they are celebrating the event one day early.

Students can meet at McCormick Park at 7 a.m. on Oct. 6 to walk with Catt and other adults to the school. Catt said she will talk with students about many aspects of pedestrian safety, being visible, using the buddy system and other topics. Catt will also have some prizes to give students who participate in the event.

Walk to School Day was first introduced in 1997 by the Partnership for a Walkable America. International Walk to School Day was established in 2000 when Great Britain and Canada joined the United States in celebration. The event was designed to promote activity, healthy habits and awareness about safe routes for kids to and from school.