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Fitness Celebration in Frayser

March 6, 2012

Memphis Mayor A C Wharton joined parents, students, and faculty of Frayser Elementary Saturday, March 3rd, to celebrate Let’s Move! Memphis and the Safe Routes to School program.

The area around Frayser Elementary was selected for the first Safe Routes to School grant in Memphis. The $250,000 grant, which is federally funded, provides infrastructure improvements around the school, as well as monthly educational programming on bicycle and pedestrian safety.

Mayor Wharton with Jeanie-Ward Waller, her mother, Jane, her sister, Chelsea, and their close friend, Stephanie Palmer. The women stopped in Memphis as part of their "Ride America for Safe Routes," a cross-country ride that began in Key West and will end in San Francisco.

During Saturday’s event, held at Ed Rice Community Center, students had the opportunity to get a free bicycle safety check, test themselves on a bicycle obstacle course, and compete in a slow bike race. Two bicycles with helmets were also raffled off at noon.

The event also celebrated Memphis’ designation as a Let’s Move! city. The national movement, led by First Lady Michelle Obama, is designed to combat adolescent obesity and end it in one generation.

In Memphis, the city chose to focus on promoting physical activity among youth and created 25 SAFE Zones, or Shared Areas for Fitness and Exercise.  These locations, of which Ed Rice Community Center is one, typically contain amenities that attract residents seeking exercise and fitness activities.

Through directed MPD patrols of these locations, the city seeks to make a strong and visible police presence, thus deterring criminal activity and encouraging the increased use of the facilities.

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