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October 2, 2010 (La Mesa) -- To encourage health through physical activity and reduce traffic around schools, eight schools in the La Mesa-Spring Valley School District will participate in the International Walk to School Day on Wednesday, October 6th. Students will be walking or biking to school, along with parents, teachers, principals, and community leaders.


International Walk to School Day  has grown to include over 45 countries on every continent. (See


City of La Mesa school parents and volunteers are organizing “walking school buses” and “on campus” walking program kick-off events for International Walk to School Day. With concerns about childhood obesity, global warming, and high gas prices, choosing to leave the car at home for the trip to school is one small step in the right direction, organizers say. Also, with school district budget cuts, districts are searching for alternatives to the gas-guzzling school bus.


“La Mesa Kids Walk & Roll to School,” is part of the Federal Safe Routes to School program coordinated by the City of La Mesa and WalkSanDiego. There will be banners, hand-made, cardboard “school buses,” and extra police staffing at participating schools.


Program coordinators are working closely with volunteer Parent Champions at each school to organize and promote the event. Each school has been given a supply of rubber bracelets to give to all participating walkers. Some schools have solicited donations from local businesses to support walker incentives and refreshments for volunteers. Students who live too far to walk or bike can drive to their school’s designated meeting place to join the walk. Local elected leaders, community champions and public safety personnel will lend their support to La Mesa’s National Walk to School Day.


Event Highlights:


Rolando Elementary School has organized a “Walking School Bus” beginning at the corner of Colony Drive and Normandie Place and proceeding down 70th Street to the school. Clif ZBar representatives will be personally giving away snacks to walkers. An assembly will follow the Walk to reinforce the value of walking to school for families.


Lemon Avenue Elementary School students will meet at Crosspoint Church parking lot at 8809 La Mesa Blvd. and will march to the rhythm provided by Rhythm Worxs, down Jackson to Madison and on to the intersection of Lemon Avenue and Glen Street. A large Peace Circle Awards program will follow and snacks will be provided by Clif Zbar

La Mesa Middle School students will meet at Highwood Park next to the school and parade in front of the school and around the field. Following the walk raffle prizes will be drawn for participating walkers and a Parent Get-Together will follow to discuss future Walk to School days as well as Carpooling options.


Maryland Avenue Elementary School students will meet at the Lake Murray parking lot and parade down Kiowa Drive to Maryland Avenue and proceed to the school. A large Peace Circle will follow to talk about the benefits of walking and biking to school.


Other schools in La Mesa that are planning events for October 6th include:

• Northmont Elementary
• La Mesa Dale Elementary
• Murray Manor Elementary
• Parkway Middle School

These schools are planning “on-campus” walks and assemblies to kick-off their walk/jog programs.


For more information please contact: Kim Shannon, City of La Mesa, 619-667-1319 or


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