Movin' and Groovin' in Downtown St. Louis!

Posted by Maggie in on Mon 09/28/2015 10:37

by: Renee Parks, Program Director

Tis’ the season for outdoor festivals and activities, and weekends in St. Louis are chock full of opportunities! You may have heard of – and attended Trailnet’s Share the Street Party a couple weekends back (Sunday, September 20) at the Old Post Office Plaza in downtown St. Louis. The purpose of the event was to celebrate St. Louis as a healthy, active and vibrant community, and benefitted Trailnet, whose advocacy work in the region helps communities build for better walking and biking.

As part of the event, they had a dance walk, which was organized in partnership with GirlTrek. Trailnet and GirlTrek welcomed the opportunity for Girls on the Run St. Louis to share and participate in this family fun event. So, we did! Several of us joined in on the fun including my family and me – and I want to tell you all about it and inspire you to get movin’ and groovin’!

First of all, do you know what dance walking is? If not, then check out this video of Ben Aaron exploring what it’s all about – and even if you do know dance walking still watch this video because Ben is so entertaining! It’ll make you want to get up and move!

The dance walk – or mobile dance party began at 11:45 a.m. with a warm-up on the steps of the Old Post Office Plaza that included some Zumba-like moves (woo-hoo! I’m a secret Zumba lover!). It was important to get limber and prepared for walking and more intense dancing – as well as get into the dance walk spirit! I started out timid, but by the end of our 15-min warm-up I was ready to go!

At noon, the group of about 50 dance walkers that included kids of all ages (1 y.o. – 60’s+) headed out on our one-mile adventure…groovin’ to the tunes blaring from the bicycle lead’s tricked out music-speaker trailer! We stopped for at a couple points – outside BallPark Village and Busch Stadium, and in Citygarden – to dance for 10-15 minutes! It was during those stops that we had plenty of spectators as well as folks join in dancing. I was even approached by a woman who asked how often this takes place because she wants to join in on the fun!

My spouse, Adam who is bit more shy and reserved around strangers and crowds was enjoying the lightheartedness and fun expressed by all – including the crossing guards who were dancing in the intersections! And our one-year old, Elise wouldn’t stay confined to her stroller…she had to move and shake with dad and mom!

We finished the 1-mile walk at the Old Post Office Plaza where we did 25 more minutes of line dancing! The rockstars who led all the dancing were JoJo on the Go Fitness dance instructors. They were amazing! I was feeling energized and accomplished…I got a great workout and got to spend quality time with family and friends!

After the dance walk, there were many other festivities to enjoy:
• Ride the Rivers Century (started at 7:30 a.m. and finished at the Share the Street Party)
• Old North City 10-mile Community Ride
• Music
• Bailey’s restaurants selling food and beverages
• And much more!

In summary, I couldn’t agree more with Ben about how dance walking is awesome…it combines some great things:  seeing a neighborhood/community/city, interacting with others, dancing…and oh, getting some great physical activity and fitness! I’m so glad I got to participate in this family-friendly, active event!