National Bike to School Day promoting healthy habits - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

National Bike to School Day promoting healthy habits

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CEDAR FALLS (KWWL) -

Some local schools are taking part in the first National Bike to School Day.

According to the Iowa Department of Transportation, nearly half of all children walked or biked to school in 1969. Now, it's about 15 percent.

At Holmes Junior High School in Cedar Falls, they are encouraging their kids to bike to school while promoting healthy habits.

"About a mile," said Caleb Lovell, 9th grade student.

"Oh it's about a mile and a half," said Charly Wohlert, 8th grade student.

For Lovell and Wohlert, this distance isn't so bad, in fact they make that trek on their bike almost every day to school.

"I really don't like to ride in cars. The fuel and it's nicer and helps me wake up in the morning," said Wohlert.

Lovell and Wohlert are both part of the bike club at Holmes Junior High School.

The club was started by Sue Green and Alex Oakland, a couple of teachers who wanted to promote healthy living.

"When they turn 16, they will just switch to cars. But when they turn to their twenties and they start paying for gas, it's real easy making that transition back to using your bike for transportation," said Green.

Almost every Friday the students are given snacks and then are eligible for "Bike Tech" gift cards.

Just last year, Holmes Junior High and Hanson Elementary received a Safe Routes to School Grant from the Iowa Department of Transportation. It is allowing them to improve the sidewalks in front of the schools.

"We do have some kids that bike across town to get here or from North Cedar to get here and just having the safe sidewalks and stuff is a huge factor to encourage kids," said Oakland.

"Anyone can ride a bike. It's easy to do. It's just like doing homework," said Lovell.

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