by A.F. Mayor Marc Beitia
Even after 35 years of teaching I still manage to learn new things, tips and tricks. I spent most of last week doing just that at the Idaho Agricultural Teachers’ Association summer in-service in Jerome. I then traveled to Boise on Friday to learn more about community health. I won’t bore you with all the details of the in-service, but will say as a teacher and someone who tries to contribute to the betterment of society there is always room to learn and for improvement.
My biggest take away from yesterday’s meeting on community health was that a community’s socioeconomic factors have the biggest impact on its overall health. I didn’t learn this fact yesterday but it sure reinforced what I did learn from Dr. Beegle last fall and the need for our Opportunity Community, our navigators and the life-changing impact they can have on our neighbors.
I did pick up a cool idea from one of the other five mayors invited to participate in the six month community health training. In Rathdrum, ID, they have “Storybook Trails.” These are trails that have individual pages of children’s stories placed on placards, similar to bird descriptions out at Willow Bay, every 100 to 200 yards on a circular path. While taking your child for a walk you also have the opportunity to read to or with them; you start at the beginning of the book or trailhead and when you have finished your short walk or hike you have also read the entire book, page by page and step by step.
It goes hand-in-hand with the Read-Talk-Play initiative by our school district. I will be searching our seniors who would like to make three storybook trails; one in the City Park, one along the lollypop loop on the Willow Bay trail and the third on the large loop trail at Willow Bay Park. If you have favorite childhood stories that you would like to see placed in one of the three spots please share them with me.
As part of my participation in the Community Health training the city will be receiving $10,000. I will be designating part of these funds to pay for materials to build exercise equipment that can also be placed along the Willow Bay Trail and perhaps in that park as well. These pieces will also be part of two students’ senior projects. The remainder of the funds may be used as a cash match for the new playground equipment we are trying to get through another grant for Lee Street Park or it may be used as additional funding for the Ferry Hollow Trail study and management plan development.
I also hope to learn something new as Gov. Brad Little comes to town this Wednesday for the Capital for a Day event. Our three District 28 legislators will be meeting with him prior to the event as will I. I would encourage you to attend if at all possible as the schedule has three hours designated for questions and answers with the governor, much of his staff and many of the state’s department heads.
The schedule for June 26 City for a Day is as follows: 10 a.m., Pledge of Allegiance; 10:05 a.m., welcome by Mayor Marc Beitia; 10:10 a.m., governor’s welcome and agency introductions; 10:30 a.m., questions from audience; 12 p.m., break for lunch; 1:15 p.m., award presentation – Governor Little; 1:20 p.m., Proclamation Signing – Governor Little; 1:30 p.m., questions from audience; 3 p.m., event ends.
As a reminder, next week is the 4th of July; please join us for the community breakfast in the city park. My thanks to Kelly Brannock and Chris Wride for all their work in putting this event together. I look forward to seeing you there.
Until next week…
Thanks for reading!
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