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Wind doesn’t hinder city walkers

POULSBO — It was hard to miss Jana Brown Sunday afternoon as she led about 40 walkers during the 3.1 mile walk through Little Norway as part of the Association of Washington Cities Walk Across Washington campaign.

Brown, whose yellow T-shirt and yellow flag outshone the sun on the blustery day, said she was pleased with the event’s overall turnout.

“We had a few no-shows but even more people signed up over the weekend once they heard about it,” she said.

The event marked the second time the group has placed a special emphasis on walking and the walkability of cities in the state.

Mayor Donna Jean Bruce opened the event by thanking everyone for showing up on the cool, windy day.

The event is part of a weeklong effort by the AWC to promote healthy lifestyles in its communities, Bruce said.

Central Market was instrumental in the larger-than-expected turnout because its staff handed out fliers for the event during the weekend, Brown said.

While the market was one of the unofficial local supporters of the event, Brown credited AWC for its support throughout the entire process.

“They planned the whole thing totally and even provided the pedometers we gave out,” she said.

The planned route began at the Kvelstad Pavilion in Waterfront Park, journeyed north into American Legion Park before moving east toward 8th Avenue, headed south into one of the city’s newest additions, Oyster Plant Park, and ventured north along the shores of Liberty Bay, into Lions Park and Net Shed Vista, and then back to the pavilion.

Even though the winds were cold and gusty at times, Brown said the group didn’t encounter much of a headwind until it made the turn at Oyster Plant Park.

“By that time, we were pretty warmed up and it felt good,” she said, noting that she was glad it didn’t rain.

Even though the event targeted city employees, the community played a large part in its success, she said.

“It became more of a community event instead of a just a city-employee event and I think we could do this every year,” she said.

The event also encouraged people to get out and walk instead of being sedentary, she remarked.

However, with the myriad of issues and projects city employees are working on this time of year, Brown said she was pleased to see as many of them as she did Sunday.

“We have a lot going on and we did well,” Brown said. “I was pleased.”

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