Fresh air, fitness, and a day full of family fun will be provided for free when a healthy tradition takes to the streets of Walnut Grove.
The 53rd annual Langley Walk will be held on Sunday, May 3, and people of all ages are invited to lace up their shoes and take part in an event that has been part of the community for more than half a century.
Each year, the walk is held in a different community of the Township of Langley or in the City of Langley, and the public is encouraged to walk, run, or bike a five or ten kilometre route. This year’s event starts and finishes at Walnut Grove Community Park, 8999 Walnut Grove Drive, in the south parking lot by Walnut Grove Secondary School.
Entertainment and registration starts at noon and the walk itself gets underway at 1:30 p.m.
“This is a great way to get together with family, friends, or co-workers, get some exercise, and see the neighbourhoods that make up our community,” said Township of Langley community recreation programmer Barbara Andersen. “The walk is not a competition but a chance to encourage everyone to lead an active, healthy lifestyle.”
The Langley Walk was started in 1963 by Pete Swensson, Langley’s recreation director, who was passionate about getting people involved in fitness. The first Walk drew about 500 people who walked a 22-mile course that stretched from Aldergrove Park to River Road, from Fort Langley to City Park. The walk hit its peak in the 1970s, attracting more than 5,000 people.
As part of that tradition, a commemorative crest is offered to participants. Trophies are awarded to the elementary school, secondary/middle school, organization, and family with the most walkers, as well as to the oldest walker. All walkers are eligible to win draw prizes.
A new addition this year will see Township of Langley Mayor Jack Froese lead interested participants on a “Jane’s Walk”-style tour of Walnut Grove. Jane’s Walk events encourage citizens to walk and talk in their neighbourhoods, and those who would like to join the mayor on the five km route can register on the day of the event.
Participants are encouraged to bring their own refillable water bottles, and following the walk, guests can enjoy more activities, children’s games, entertainment, and a free snack provided by Buy-Low Foods in Walnut Grove.
“This really is a great, free event for families and we hope people stay and enjoy the afternoon,” Andersen said. “This year we will feature a sports skills area which will include pick-up hockey games, a soccer shooting wall, and a blow-up hockey shoot and win game, all provided by local community groups and businesses. Also included are face painting, visits with local team mascots, and much more.”
For more information call 604-533-6086 or 604-514-2940, or visit tol.ca/events or city.langley.bc.ca
Anyone interested in volunteering to help with registration and route marshalling is asked to contact Andersen at firstname.lastname@example.org. Lunch will be provided and event organizers can provide volunteer hours for high school students.