Monday, February 7, 2011

Commerce City Celebrates Let’s Move! One-Year Anniversary and the Colorado Rapids MLS Championship

More than 100 children and their families participate in healthy living activities

COMMERCE CITY – Commerce City, in partnership with the Colorado Rapids, today hosted a free family-friendly event to celebrate the one-year anniversary of Let’s Move!, a campaign to raise a healthier generation of kids. The Rapids used the event to allow fans the opportunity to celebrate the team’s 2010 Major League Soccer (MLS) championship by taking pictures with the MLS Cup.

The Let’s Move! campaign started last year by First Lady Michelle Obama set an ambitious national goal of solving the challenge of childhood obesity. Let’s Move! uses a comprehensive approach that engages every sector impacting the health of children by focusing on the campaign’s four pillars:

1. Help parents make healthy family choices

2. Create healthy schools

3. Provide access to healthy and affordable food

4. Promote physical activity

Within each of these areas, Let’s Move provides schools, families and communities simple tools to help kids be more active, eat better, and get healthy.

“Over the past three decades, childhood obesity rates in America have tripled. Nearly one in three children in America today is overweight or obese. The one-year anniversary of Let’s Move! is an opportunity to reflect on the successes we’ve had to reverse these statistics,” said Marguerite Salazar, U.S. Department of Health & Human Services Regional Director. “President Obama’s signing of the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act improves nutrition, increases access to healthy meals and reduces childhood obesity. Commerce City and its partners will be able to take advantage of the opportunities afforded by the legislation to further advance its services and programs in these areas.”

Commerce City is one of 16 Colorado municipalities recognized by the White House as a “Let’s Move City,” for its ability to promote and provide services that reduce childhood obesity. Some of the city’s activities to date include:

· Securing $150,000 Communities Putting Prevention to Work grant to develop a citywide bicycle and pedestrian plan.

· Drafting an ordinance for City Council consideration to ban smoking from public trails and parks.

· Investing in the expansion of the Sand Creek Greenway to provide safe trails/recreation locations.

· Creating the Commerce City/Adams 14 School District Running with the Buffalo 5K race.

· Providing parks and recreation programs that serve more than 12,000 children annually.

· Partnering with community non-profits to develop three neighborhood gardens for this summer.

The free Saturday event featured interactive educational stations, with activities promoting healthy eating and the benefits of activity.

More than 100 children and their families participated in jump rope contests; the Hungry Hiker computer game; food trivia; and reading, math and geography games. Children received t-shirts, jump ropes, mini soccer balls and healthy snacks – to remind them how to live healthier. Participating agencies included Adams County Head Start, U.S. Department of Agriculture Food and Nutrition , U.S. Department of Education, Colorado Division of Wildlife, LiveWell Colorado , U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Commerce City , Kroenke Sports, Kaiser Permanente and the Colorado Rapids.

“ Commerce City believes in promoting the health and well-being of all residents by offering services and amenities that promote an active lifestyle,” said Mayor Paul Natale. “Advancing the Let’s Move! agenda is not just the city’s goal but also mine. Just being more active and learning healthy eating habits have resulted in personal health benefits. Events like these demonstrate how just working together can promote meaningful lifestyle changes.”

The event also marked an opportunity for fans to interact with the Philip F. Anschutz Trophy - Major League Soccer’s top prize - and Rapids representatives and mascots, capturing the excitement of a championship season. “As a charter member of Major League Soccer, our priority as a club is to be the best in all aspects of our organization and our success in winning the 2010 MLS Cup is a defining moment in our club’s history,” said Jeff Plush, Colorado Rapids Managing Director. “It is our goal now to continue that level of success and work towards bringing another championship back to Commerce City .”

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