By Christiaan Tarbox
SUN POST NEWSPAPERS
Spring is here, and residents can take advantage of the pleasant weather by being active and connecting with members of their communities via a yearly Hennepin County health challenge.
From May 1-28, the county will be running its “Step To It” challenge initiative, where citizens of all ages can track their steps for a chance to win from a number of prizes, all while boosting their activity levels alongside family and friends at the same time.
By using either a personal pedometer or a printable activity conversion chart, participants can rack up steps by doing activities other than walking, such as running, dancing, cycling and more. Users can update their activity logs daily or weekly, and can convert their activities to a number of steps online.
Residents can also form groups to compete with each other with their progress, and Step To It also provides toolkits for schools, workplaces and group homes to include people from all walks to life.
In 2016, the city of Brooklyn Park ranked as the most active community in Hennepin County with 128,834,094 total steps. The city of Shorewood claimed the most active residents, with 383,365 average steps per person, while Minnetonka Beach was ranked as the most engaged community, with 2.52 percent participation.
The aforementioned categories are vied for by 24 communities each year. Each town awards a pair of tickets to a Minnesota Twins game to the participant with the highest total number of steps in their age bracket, and they are also recognized for their efforts on the field at Target Field during the game. Schools and workplaces are also eligible for prizes during the challenge.
For more information on the Step To It challenge and how to become involved, visit steptoit.org, or call 612-348-5618.