News

Every day LIN staff monitor hundreds of newspapers and broadcasters, dozens of listservs, web sites, government news sources, press releases and information supplied by our site users to bring you the latest and hottest in leisure, recreation, parks and healthy living. If you have relevant news or events you would like us to publicize, tell us about it.

Fewer kids playing hockey in Hamilton and across Ontario

Added on Oct 16, 2014

For a variety of reasons, there just aren't as many kids rushing out to play “Canada’s game” this season in the Hamilton area and across Ontario. Some reasons given include cost, risk of injury, and demographic factors. Nationally, however, registration numbers are increasing.

Adam Carter, CBC News

Parents say recreation pass rules discriminate - Nanaimo

Added on Oct 8, 2014

In Nanaimo, parents of adults with special needs say that the newly enforced policy  for financial assistance for recreation programs is discriminatory.  The municipality has asked for the earnings of the entire household, making some low-income adults who live with their parents ineligible for aid, while peers in group homes or respite care still qualify.

Tamara Cunningham, Nanaimo News Bulletin

City of Atlanta Department of Parks and Recreation and The Coca-Cola Company to Unveil First ATL Parks & Rec Play Mobile

Added on Oct 7, 2014

Today the City of Atlanta Department of Parks and Recreation joins forces with The Coca-Cola Company to launch its first ATL Parks & Rec Play Mobile. The Play Mobile, also known as a recreation center on wheels, will travel throughout Atlanta to access neighborhoods without static recreation centers and activate free play for all Atlanta youth. 

The Play Mobile creates a safe, interactive and fresh air atmosphere that encourages children to go outside and play. For three hours, ATL Parks and Recreation leaders guide free activities and games for children, including non-traditional sports, games, fitness demos, arts & crafts, oversized board games and much more.

The High Line effect: Why cities around the world (including Toronto) are building parks in the sky

Added on Oct 3, 2014

Following the success of New York’s High Line, cities around the world are pursuing bold new projects that are redefining our understanding of what a park is, and in the process helping to create a richer, bold new vision of public space.

Dave McGinn, Globe and Mail

Complaint issued over allegations the City of Calgary contracted parks duties to temporary foreign workers

Added on Oct 3, 2014

Two Calgary labour groups have filed a complaint with Service Canada over a private contractor’s use of temporary foreign workers in city parks over the summer.

Dave Dormer, Calgary Sun

Mystery nets encourage play

Added on Oct 1, 2014

It was a pleasant mystery that few could answer when soccer nets and balls showed up in various parks and elementary schools around Drayton Valley. Those behind the generous, but unexplained act say they did it to give back and to get children active, not for the recognition that could come with the donation.

“It encourages grass roots soccer, but it was more to encourage play,” shares Brad Kelly, board member and technical director for the Drayton Valley and District Soccer Association (DVSA). “We knew they would get some use instead of just throwing them away; it’s mostly just for the kids.”

Volunteers from DVSA dropped off the nets with little idea as to how it would go over. The results were that students started using them immediately, teachers and staff were on board, and nets in parks are being used by people in the community.

Lesley Allan, Drayton Valley Western Review

Nature Conservancy of Canada Completes Landmark Project

Added on Sep 30, 2014

CALGARY, Sept. 29, 2014 /CNW/ - The Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) in Alberta has announced the completion of the largest conservation easement in the province's history and the largest in Canadian history.

The iconic Waldron Ranch project is 30,535 acres of privately owned property located along the Cowboy Trail (Highway 22), south of Longview and northwest of Lethbridge. It is a conservation agreement involving the largest intact native fescue grassland remaining on the eastern slopes of the Alberta Rocky Mountains. 

The Nature Conservancy of Canada led a major fundraising campaign to do this project. The funds were required to complete the purchase of a conservation easement between the shareholders of the Waldron Grazing Co-operative Ltd. and NCC.  This agreement ensures the land will continue to be utilized as a working landscape and preserves habitat for numerous wildlife that depend on this corridor. 

The Waldron connects the 70,000 acre environmentally significant Bob Creek Wildland Park (Whaleback), to the 97,000 acre Porcupine Hills Forest Reserve.  A truly breathtaking place to see, it is now protected into perpetuity for all to admire as they drive through the foothills of Southwest Alberta.

Thanks to the support of Albertans and other Canadians, hundreds of donations poured in to create this natural legacy.  The total project cost more than $37.5 million.

The 72 ranchers behind the Waldron Grazing Co-operative were the largest donor and by far the driving force behind this conservation effort.  The Nature Conservancy of Canada wishes to acknowledge other major donors who helped make this project a reality.  They include:

  • The Government of Alberta who contributed $12.2 million through the Alberta Land Stewardship Grant Program;
  • The Government of Canada who contributed $4 million through the Natural Areas Conservation Program and;
  • The Calgary Foundation provided the remaining $1 million to bring this project across the finish line.

The Waldron Grazing Co-operative will continue to own the property and the landscape will remain a working ranch where cattle and wildlife co-exist. The Conservation Easement ensures Waldron's critical lands and waters remain intact and the area is protected forever against development, subdivision, cultivation or drainage.  NCC will work in partnership with the shareholders of the Waldron Co-operative to ensure the overall health of the land is maintained.

QUOTES:

"This is a great day for conservation in Alberta and in Canada. We would like to thank the Waldron shareholders, our government partners, the Calgary Foundation, corporations, organizations and the hundreds of individuals who came together. Their vision and support for this project will help conserve a way of life and inspire people for generations to come," said Larry Simpson, Associate Regional Vice President in Alberta for the Nature Conservancy of Canada.

"The Waldron Grazing Co-op and the Nature Conservancy of Canada have created an alliance that will ensure that the Waldron Ranch will remain intact, healthy, and agriculturally productive for ever.  We are proud of this accomplishment." -Tim Nelson, Board Chair, Waldron Grazing Co-operative Ltd.

"This is one of the largest grants The Calgary Foundation has ever made towards a conservation project," says Dan Thorburn, Vice President Grants and Community Initiatives at The Calgary Foundation. "We are proud to be part of an effort that will not only protect critical wildlife habitat, but also the headwaters of streams and rivers for the Canadian prairies. We will not get a second chance."

FACTS:

  • Species at risk observed on the Waldron Ranch include golden eagle, ferruginous hawk and limber pine
  • The Waldron was prime habitat for millions of bison that once roamed the Great Plains, and dinosaur footprints reveal a history dating back millions of years.
  • This is the first time the Nature Conservancy of Canada has purchased a conservation agreement from a rancher-owned co-operative.
  • The Waldron Grazing Cooperative received a 2014 Emerald Award in the small business category for their initiative to work with a land trust.
  • Other generous donors for the project include; Werklund Foundation, TransCanada Corporation, Dale Huntingford andVirgina Dobson, Gerald A. Cooper-Key Foundation, Soderglen Ranch, Ron and Jan Brennenman, Harold Kvisle and The Riddell Family.

ABOUT:

The Nature Conservancy of Canada is the nation's leading land conservation organization, working to protect our most important natural areas and the species they sustain. Since 1962, NCC and its partners have helped to protect more than 2.7 million acres (over 1 million hectares), coast to coast. In Alberta, we have conserved over 234,000 acres.

The Government of Alberta created the Alberta Land Trust Grant program in 2011 – a program designed to support land trusts such as the Nature Conservancy of Canada to assist in the purchase or partial purchase of conservation easements on ecologically significant landscapes.

The Natural Areas Conservation Program (NACP) is a unique public-private partnership launched by the Government of Canada in 2007. Led and managed by the Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC), the program supports the accelerated pace of conservation of ecologically important private lands across southern Canada. To date, $245 million has been invested in the NACP by the Government of Canada, with more than $400 million in matching contributions raised by NCC and its partners to secure our natural heritage.  An additional $100 million was announced in May 2014 under the National Conservation Plan for the NCC to continue this program.

LEARN MORE:
Visit: www.conservewaldron.ca
         www.natureconservancy.ca

Victoria city councillors look to prevent camping in city parks

Added on Sep 29, 2014

Victoria needs to develop a strategy to stem the growing trend of city parks being used as free campgrounds, some councillors say. Police who patrol parks with bylaw officers to rouse tenters in the mornings, have told councillors the number of people camping in parks who are not homeless is increasing.

Victoria Times Colonist

Walking is the superfood of fitness, experts say

Added on Sep 29, 2014

For fitness experts who stress daily movement over workouts and an active lifestyle over weekends of warrior games, walking is a super star. Emerging evidence suggests that combined physical activity and inactivity may be more important for chronic disease risk than physical activity alone.

“Actively sedentary is a new category of people who are fit for one hour but sitting around the rest of the day," scientist Katy Bowman said. “You can’t offset 10 hours of stillness with one hour of exercise.” 

Other research suggests that three five-minute walks done throughout three hours of prolonged sitting reverses the harmful effects of prolonged sitting on arteries in the legs.

Dorene Internicola, Reuters

Government of Canada launches Build Our Kids' Success (BOKS) before school physical activity program

Added on Sep 26, 2014

Government of Canada partners with BOKS, Reebok Canada Fitness Foundation, and the Canadian Football League to get kids more physically active

TORONTO, Sept. 24, 2014 /CNW/ - Today, Minister Ambrose, joined by Mark Cohon, CFL Commissioner, Michael Rossi, President, adidas Group Canada and Katherine Tulle, Founder and Executive Director, Build Our Kids' Success (BOKS) announced that BOKS, a before-school physical activity program will be made available for the first time in Canada.

BOKS is an initiative of Reebok and the Reebok Foundation, aimed at getting elementary school kids moving and their brains ready for a day of learning.  The five-year partnership between the Public Health Agency of Canada, Reebok Canada, the Reebok Canada Fitness Foundation, the Canadian Football League (CFL), and the Propel Centre for Population Health Impact will help address the obstacles that prevent children from getting enough physical activity so they can lead more active and healthier lifestyles.

BOKS, whose goal is to enhance academic performance and the overall health of kids through physical activity, is an evidence-based proven program to improve physical endurance, executive functioning, working memory and many other areas that help lay the ground work for successful and healthy children. The program, with the help of Reebok, is working toward creating a culture of participants by engaging community members.

In its first year, BOKS will be implemented in approximately 90 schools in Toronto, Winnipeg, Vancouver and Ottawa. The program will roll-out over the following four years in all nine Canadian cities with a CFL team, and is expected to reach approximately 45,000 elementary school children in 450 schools across the country.

Quick Facts

  • As outlined in the recent Speech from the Throne, the Government of Canada is committed to working with the provinces and territories and with the private and not-for-profit sectors to encourage young Canadians to be more physically active.
  • Only four percent of Canadian children are getting the recommended amount of daily physical activity.
  • Approximately two out of every three adults in Canada are overweight or obese and almost one in three children and youth is already overweight or obese.
  • BOKS, founded by Kathleen Tullie and a group of passionate moms, was inspired by Harvard Medical School's Dr. John Ratey's book Spark which proved the connection between exercise and the brain.
  • In the next five years, BOKS Canada expects to reach approximately 45,000 students in 450 schools across the country.
  • The curriculum and tools will be accessible to any school at no cost via the BOKSKIDS.org website.
  • The Public Health Agency of Canada, Reebok Canada, the Reebok Foundation, and the CFL are investing $9.78 millionin this initiative over five years. The Agency is providing half of this funding and its partners are providing the other half.
  • This partnership represents the largest investment made to date through the Agency's healthy living/chronic disease prevention multi-sectoral partnership approach.

Quotes
"The Build Our Kids' Success program has a proven track record of results in both getting kids active before school and preparing them for a day full of learning. We are proud and excited to be working with Reebok Canada, the Reebok Canada Fitness Foundation and the Canadian Football League to bring this program to Canada for the first time. Our Government is committed to fostering innovative partnerships like this one, that will help children and youth adopt active and healthier lifestyles so they get the best possible start in life."

The Honourable Rona Ambrose
Minister of Health

"The health and wellness of our youth is an important issue facing our country today. The game of football and sports in general can play an important role in promoting physical activity in children. We are proud to partner with Reebok on this very important initiative and look forward to our teams and players being involved in getting our young Canadians physically active and having fun. Together, we can have a real positive impact on our youth in our communities."

Mark Cohon
CFL Commissioner

"We are very proud to launch the BOKS program in Canada and couldn't be more pleased with our partnerships with the Public Health Agency of Canada and the Canadian Football League. The potential for growth throughout the country is endless. With the support of our partners, we plan to bring BOKS to as many schools as possible, empowering kids, staff, and entire communities to make physical activity a part of their daily routine for life."

Michael Rossi
President - adidas Group Canada, parent company of Reebok Canada.

"We are extremely excited to launch BOKS in Canada, especially as we continue to expand worldwide. The implementation of BOKS represents Canada's commitment to helping kids living a healthier lifestyle. BOKS can have a positive impact on classroom performance, behaviour and overall health, and the opportunity for growth in Canadais tremendous."  

Kathleen Tullie
BOKS founder and director of social responsibility Reebok U.S

Related Products

The Play Exchange – Canada's Active Living Challenge
Nutrition Label Consultation

Associated Links

Build Our Kids Success

 

SOURCE Public Health Agency of Canada

 For further information: Michael Bolkenius, Office of the Honourable Rona Ambrose, Federal Minister of Health, (613) 957-0200; Media Relations, Public Health Agency of Canada, (613) 957-2983

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