Feb 21st, 2014

We are Active RVA. Are you?

by Jonah Holland, PR & Marketing Coordinator,  Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden 

Jonah Holland, Don Garber, Mark Herzog

Pr & Marketing Coordinator Jonah Holland, center, with Don Garber, president of the Sports Backers Board of Directors, right and Mark Herzog, HDL Senior Vice President of Corporate and Governmental Affairs, left. Photo by Jesse Peters, Backlight Photography.

Did you know that Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden is Active RVA certified?  We are!

Last week, Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden, along with  25 Richmond region schools and 42 corporations were honored with an Active RVA Fitness Award and certification.  I was thrilled to represent the Garden and accept the award, which will be on display in the Garden’s Lora Robins Library.

At the awards ceremony Richmond SportsBackers treated us to a healthy (of course!) lunch and then some fun pirate-themed movement activities with Greater Richmond Fit4Kids,  educators (who typically work with First Graders).  I was happy to eat my fruit salad “dessert” first, and only got mildly skeptical looks from my table “mates.”  I have to admit I was a bit skeptical when activity leaders Nellie Knight, Wellness Integration Specialist at Bellwood Elementary, and Jenny Long-Innes,Wellness Integration Specialist at Elizabeth Scott Elementary told us that we were about to do a pirate-themed activity. But, they were fabulous as they led us through ‘Ship Wrecked’, a game they use with elementary-age kids to both teach SOLs and keep them moving.  Then, guest Speaker, Rich Conte, Director and Chief Wonder Officer at the Science Museum of Virginia told us about the Science Museum’s Boost exhibit, which focuses on mind, body and lifestyle.

Personally, I left the Active RVA luncheon feeling inspired. Our Northside neighbor (and namesake) Ginter Park Elementary School was honored as the outstanding Active RVA school. (You can check out all the great things they are doing, including a before-school running club,  in the video below. )  Our friends over at CarMax  were honored as the 2014 Outstanding Company of the Year. Carmax knows how important healthy eating is too. In 2011 the CarMax Foundation gave  Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden a $15,000 grant that helped to fund the Community Kitchen Garden where we grow thousands of pounds of fresh vegetables for FeedMore each year.

So as you’ve probably guessed, fitness is really important to the Garden — staying active is part of our culture.  I’m sure you’ve heard about our Nudge app, that is free for all Garden Members, but did you know that we have Yoga in the Garden, Tai Chi and wonderful walking paths too? I didn’t even mention the best exercise of all —  gardening! There are so many ways you can get fit in the Garden.

Want to learn more? Look for an article in the Henrico Citizen later this week on the Active RVA lunch.  And in April, Richmond Magazine will publish a special section in their Top Docs issue, all about Active RVA. Also, if you want to sign up your own school or organization to be Active RVA Certified, their website is a great place to start.

Walking trails map at Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden



Jonah Holland is Digital Content Manager at Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden, where she has worked for 14 years overseeing social media, the blog, and the website. She is also a mom, yogi, open water swimmer, gardener, and seeker. She's been known to go for a walk in the Garden and come back with hundreds of plant photos, completely inspired to write her next blog post.

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