Thousands of New Brunswickers get outside for in motion Parks & Trails Day events

009HEPAC / CSAAP

Thousands of New Brunswickers turned out this summer to celebrate in motion Parks & Trails Day and got “in motion” at events held in more than 40 communities across the province.

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Guided walks, mountain biking, hiking, cycling and other outdoor activities drew 3,000 people to the province’s parks, trails, rivers, waterways and green spaces throughout the month of June.

Organizers were elated to see the number of in motion Parks and Trails Day events more than double this year, up from 20 in 2014. Turnouts ranged from more than 500 people hitting the trails at French Fort Cove in Miramichi, to five novice bird watchers at the Daly Point Nature Preserve in Bathurst.

In motion is a provincial movement that encourages New Brunswickers to make physical activity part of their day-to-day lives. In motion Parks & Trails Day, which was organized by a coalition of health and wellness groups, also marked International Trails Day and the national “June is Recreation and Parks Month” campaign.

In Centreville, 17 families took part in an “Amazing Race” event hosted by the Centreville Early Childhood Development Centre. Teams raced against the clock while solving clues and completing physical activities including skipping, squats and hula-hopping at each of the game’s seven stations. The winning team — which clocked in at 32 minutes — took home a six-person tent and sleeping bags, ensuring more outdoor family adventures ahead.

Plus, more New Brunswick schools got into the action in 2014. South Carleton Elementary School saw all 394 of its students, teachers and educational assistants take part in outdoor events to mark in motion Parks and Trails Day, while more than 200 students from Harvey Elementary School and Harvey High School teamed up for a trail walk.

Members of the Grand Lake Wellness Network joined forces to create three events in the Grand Lake area, including a children’s scavenger hunt in Chipman, and a guided ride through Minto’s network of mountain biking trails. An evening of mountain biking was capped with a bonfire where participants enjoyed healthy snacks like roasted pineapple.

Scavenger hunts were popular at many in motion Parks & Trails Day events. In Perth Andover, kids took part in a scavenger hunt along with fun challenge to identify plants, trees and flowers, while teams of three in Riverside-Albert hunted for clues on the Crooked Creek Trail.

To learn more about in motion Parks & Trails Day and how you can participate next year, visit hepac.ca/inmotion

In motion Parks & Trails Day is presented by: Sentiers NB Trails, Recreation NB, Para New Brunswick, Fitness New Brunswick, the Wellness Movement, NB Anti-Tobacco Coalition, HEPAC, the NB Physical Education Society and the Government of New Brunswick.