On April 19th, we hosted a completely amazing and almost overwhelming media day at Hidden Oak Elementary School in Alachua County Florida to celebrate the county’s 17 schools completing over 45,000 miles in this school year alone. Our incredible partner AvMed Health Plans, which funded the first 43 Morning Mile Starter Kits, flew in Vice President Barry Wagner (yellow AvMed t-shirt) to take part in the event, Alachua County Superintendent Dr. Daniel Boyd (purple jacket) came out to see what all the excitement was all about and 300-400 Hidden Oak students hit the field to show just how much they love their morning fitness program. Guess who else came out? Parents! We had parents galore and when they all (Executives, Dr. Boyd, hundreds of students and dozens of parents) hit the field, the emotion was palpable.
Never ever have I been around so many people, ranging from ages 5 to 75, who felt so happy, passionate and joyous about their ability to walk, run and move! It was an incredible celebration no doubt, and the feeling of pride surging through my (Fitz Koehler) body was intense. Principal Ron Knowles, Assistant Principal Holly Burton and Coach Steve Arnett have done an outstanding job creating an environment where all students are encouraged to participate in the Morning Mile and ensuring they are appropriately congratulated on their success. In fact, 5th grader Michael Shaver was honored as Hidden Oak’s first student to complete 100 miles with his “100” charm for his Morning Mile necklace. This media day was a major success, but more importantly … it was a reflection of what was also going on at 16 other schools in Alachua County on that very day. Administrators, teachers, parents and students were coming together to walk, run, have fun and get healthy.
Our mission is simple: to get as many children moving in the mornings as possible. That means, we’re going to expand across the nation. Florida schools are already on the move, but not all, so if you haven’t already applied for a Morning Mile Starter Kit to make this magic happen at your school … do so here. Want this for your school in New York, Oklahoma or Washington? Let us know. Want to sponsor Morning Mile Starter Kits for Schools in South Dakota, Hawaii or Alaska? Let us know!