13 October 2018

Getting a running start in DC!

Written by: Super User

It has been so wonderful creating a little home for myself in D.C. this winter. I’ve met so many kind people both at the National Park Service, where I spend most of my days, and at the U.S. Forest Service, where I was lucky enough to meet a few of the DC fellows after going to training in Denver with HAF USFS fellows from around the nation. I’ve also been able to get involved in many projects right from the get-go at the NPS office, which has been a great experience.

A highlight of my time so far, though, would have to be our National ParkRx Day event this past weekend. ParkRx is a nation-wide initiative to prescribe time outdoors to improve patients’ health, and to promote parks and public lands as viable solutions to preventable illnesses.

Saturday was a beautiful sunny day - perfect for the family activities we had planned. We partnered with health care providers from around the DC metro area and with other community organizations to promote getting out into green spaces and to enjoy a fun day in the sun!

The afternoon was full of families and people ambling through the various tents and field games, learning about parks in the area, organizations both close by and from across town, and getting information from local health care providers. It was so fun seeing the kids enjoy the games, including a life size chess board, wiffle ball, frisbees, and cornhole! There was also a live DJ who kept the tunes bumpin’, and at various points throughout the day, played music for exercise dance classes! There was also a historic walk lead by a ranger from the Civil War Defenses of Washington, and a nature walk led by Biophilic DC. All told, it was a very entertaining and educational afternoon!

One of my favorite parts was watching the kiddos run around the big field that is Fort Circle Park. Talking to some of the nearby residents who wandered through our event, the greenspace at Fort Circle Park is a fairly under-used space, so this fun-filled event was a welcome change of pace for the area. Knowing that the space would be used by residents given programming and a bit of activation on our part makes me excited for the future of the space, and seeing how we can include the residents in future planning processes to make sure their wishes are well-met.

I am sure there will be many fun events in the future, but I know that this one will stick in my mind for a long time!

By: Aurelia Casarrubias

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