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109 W. Madison Mt. Ayr, IA 50854 View Location

Apr 30

Celebrate National Bike and Walk to School (or Work!) Week

Ringgold County Public Health (RCPH) is working hard to promote the benefits of regular physical activity via walking and bicycling. Some fairly intelligent people have believed in the power of bicycles. For instance, do you remember a fellow named Albert Einstein? He had a particular fondness for riding a bicycle. He even said once that his famous theory of relativity (E = mc2) was hatched while he was on a bicycle ride. He once wrote in a letter to his son “Life is like riding a bicycle — to keep your balance, you must keep moving.”

Consider joining a group of people on May 8 in Mount Ayr or May 9 in Diagonal to walk or bike to school/work in honor of National Bike and Walk to School Week. RCPH is joining forces with a number of local entities to promote the event. On board so far are Hy-Vee, First Christian Church, Ringgold County Hospital, and both Diagonal  and Mount Ayr Schools. The events will start at 7:30 AM from Judge Lewis Park in Mount Ayr and from the City Park in Diagonal. Rural residents are invited to leave their vehicles at the parks so they can bike/walk to school or work. All children who participate will receive a prize bag, with a special prize for the first 30 kids on bicycles. Parents and grandparents are invited to join the children in their lives for a great way to start the day.

In support of the events, Ringgold County Sheriff Deputy Rob Haley will provide an escort.  He offers these safety tips for bicyclists:

  • Bicyclists generally need to comply with the same rules of the road as the drivers of motor vehicles under Iowa law.
  • Bicyclists using the road are required to obey all traffic signs, signals and roadway markings.
  • Ride single file on the right side of the road with the flow of traffic.
  • Use caution at intersections and be prepared to stop.
  • Wear brightly colored clothing to make you visible and a helmet to prevent a head injury.

For walkers, Haley offers these tips:

  • Walk on the left side, opposite of the flow of traffic.
  • Cross safely, look both ways before crossing any street.
  • Be visible, wear bright colors when walking in the daytime.  When walking at night, wear light-colored and reflective clothing or reflective vest.
  • Keep the volume down if you listen to music while you walk.  The volume should be low enough to be able to hear what’s going on around you.

If you would like more information on walking, biking, or healthy eating, call Ringgold County Public Health at 641-464-0691 or check out our facebook page at