Building a More Active Community
Emma St. Aubin
estau255@uwsp.edu
ciclovia-2-color-sfeld.jpgDespite the unexpected snowfall last Saturday morning, about 300 students and community members walked, biked, jogged, rollerbladed, skateboarded, and pushed strollers along a seven-mile loop on the north side of Stevens Point.


The Ciclovia, an event held to encourage activity within the city of Stevens Point, had people of all ages utilizing that loop throughout the morning while raising awareness and acceptability for non-motorized travel.


Trevor Roark, the event coordinator for Adventure Tours at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, was the mastermind behind the Stevens Point Ciclovia.


“About two years ago, UWSP Adventure Tours exhibited at ‘Ride the Drive’ in Madison. The event closed down the streets and had about 20,000 people involved. It was incredible. I saw it, and I thought to myself, why don’t we try something like this in Stevens Point? So I did,” Roark said. 

​The first ever Ciclovia Wisconsin was held this past Saturday. Adventure 212
sponsored free Zumba and Yoga instruction at the event’s active rest stops.
Photo by Samantha Feld.
 


The seven-mile route had no start or finish line. Rather, it was a loop that anyone could enter at any point and travel in either direction. The entire route explored some of Stevens Point’s city parks, Schmeekle Reserve, UWSP, and the Green Circle Trail.


“It was an awesome community-building event, and Stevens Point is a great community for hosting events like this,” Roark said.


Jordyn Schwartz, a junior Health Promotion and Wellness major, volunteered as an intersection guide, watching for safety and answering questions regarding the route.


“I volunteered for the event because it was presented in two of my classes, and it seemed like a good opportunity to gain experience and be involved in the community at the same time,” Schwartz said.


The free, open-to-the-public loop included “Active Rest Stops” lead by local organizations such as Adventure 212 and the YMCA. These stops included Zumba and Yoga, bike maintenance and demos, a skate jam at the skate park and a kids’ zone.


“The best part of Ciclovia was the kids’ zone where they had activities for the children who participated. I thought it was a great way to get kids involved and excited about being active,” Schwartz said.


There was also a series of participation contests occurring throughout the day, encouraging UWSP students and employees to actively participate in both the completion of the loop and to utilize the four active rest stops.


“I think that because this was the first Ciclovia event in Stevens Point, not many people may have known much about it,” Schwartz said. “I think after a few more years there will start to be a much better turn out.”


Roark plans on holding the Ciclovia in Stevens Point again next year and making it even bigger and better.