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Santa Monica Celebrates City’s First Walk Loop with Ribbon-Cutting Ceremony
July 3, 2019 2:41 PM
by Linda Cogswell
Santa Monica is a place where walking is not only pleasant and desirable, but a core part of the City’s identity and character—we are a city of walkers. The City of Santa Monica celebrates the joy and benefits of walking with the Walk Loop Project, a GoSaMo initiative to create neighborhood walking loops throughout the city. These one-mile walking loops aim to enhance mobility, promote health and wellbeing, create opportunities for discovery and inspiration, and strengthen community connections.
In partnership with Adopt-A-Walk, the City’s first walking loop was unveiled in the Wilmont Neighborhood on Saturday with an opening celebration attended by approximately 50 community members. The opening of the Wilmont Walk Loop began with remarks from special guests Mayor Pro Tempore Terry O’Day and Malin Svensson, founder of Adopt-A-Walk, followed by a ribbon-cutting ceremony and community walk along the Wilmont Walk Loop.
Photo: Silvia Spross
“The number of gyms appears to grow as fast as the obesity crisis is growing. 80% of the adult Americans do not get the recommended amounts of exercise each week. We need to make physical activity easily accessible. That’s the idea behind Adopt-A-Walk. Walking around the marked walk loop in your immediate neighborhood is not just good for your physical health, it is also beneficial for your social, spiritual, and emotional wellbeing. It becomes a natural meeting point for people wanting to go for a walk, meet new friends, and get to know their neighbors and neighborhood,” said Malin Svensson, Adopt-A-Walk founder and Santa Monica resident of 30 years.
The Wilmont Walk Loop is a great place to take a deep breath, walk off some stress, and be active, it’s route beginning and ending at Reed Park and extending along the neighborhood’s tree-lined sidewalks, local shops, and park amenities. Folks experiencing the walking loop for the first time can look for the standing sign at 7th/California to receive information about the project, see a map of the entire route, and orient themselves before starting their 1-mile trip. The Wilmont Walk Loop also features small standing signs to mark the halfway and completion milestones of the route, 1/10-mile distance markers, directional arrows, and inspirational quotes, including one from Maya Angelou: “Try to be a rainbow in someone’s cloud.”
“Santa Monica is a walk-friendly community where people enjoy walking regularly, whether with their dog, a leisurely neighborhood stroll, or for exercise,” said Chief Mobility Officer Francie Stefan. “This project highlights the pedestrian experience and simple pleasures of walking by defining a peaceful route with directions and support along the way. We hope that people of all ages and abilities will give the Wilmont Walk Loop a stroll.”
For more information, visit www.gosamo.org/walkloops
Adopt-A-Walk is a health advocacy organization committed to create and promote walking friendly communities to improve the health of the people in the community in a fun and easy way. They work with City Planners to develop a permanently marked 1 Mile Walking Loop with a Start/Finish Information Sign, Distance Markers, Inspirational Quotes and Leaning Rails. It becomes a natural meeting point for people wanting to go for a walk, meet new friends, get to know their neighbors and neighborhood. Volunteers in the community become Adopt-A-Walk Leaders and lead weekly walks around the specifically designed walking loop. www.adoptawalk.org