• Larry Jones: Park Trot 5K and farmers market this weekend

  • Independence is shaping up to have quite a busy weekend this week with both the Park Trot 5K and the Independence Farmers and Craft Market opening for the season!

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  • Independence is shaping up to have quite a busy weekend this week with both the Park Trot 5K and the Independence Farmers and Craft Market opening for the season!
    A little more than a year ago we were amazed as nearly 1,000 runners hit the pavement; running, walking or strolling through one of our city’s most beautiful parks during our 1st Annual Park Trot 5K. This Saturday, May 4, these 1,000 runners will be back and nearly doubled at Waterfall Park for the 2nd Annual Park Trot 5K.
    The Park Trot 5K is a FREE 5K run/walk that is open to the public. The event aims to promote increased use and access of the city’s parks and trails. By providing this race free of charge, we hope families will enjoy the event and want to spend more time visiting the many parks and trails Independence has to offer.
    This year’s race is being hosted through a partnership between the Independence Health Department, Independence Parks & Recreation and KC Running Company. In addition, many local businesses have partnered up to make this year’s run possible, including: Centerpoint Medical Center, Bass Pro Shops, The Examiner, Nature’s Pantry, Hy-Vee, Balanced You Yoga Studio, Stand Up! Blue Springs, Dick’s Sporting Goods, Cosentino’s Sun Fresh, GEHA and Studio on Main.
    At this year’s Park Trot, not only can you explore Waterfall Park, but the Building a Healthier Independence team will also have their pedal-powered bike blender set up for a limited number of demonstrations. So after you have trotted through Waterfall Park, stop by the BHI tent and pedal up a delicious, fresh-fruit smoothie! While enjoying your smoothie, hang around and watch the Park Trot Kids Dash, mingle with fellow runners and wait for the race and raffle prize winners to be announced!
    Then, if you are looking for a way to cool down from your run or just want to continue leading a healthy lifestyle, swing by the Independence Farmers & Craft Market located on the Independence Square! The Market will be opening at 5 a.m. for the first time this season and will stay open until 1 p.m. or until produce is exhausted.
    Along with fresh fruits and vegetables, homemade jams and jellies, and one-of-a-kind crafts, the Farmers Market will also be hosting the annual Arbor Day Celebration at 10 a.m. held in collaboration with the merchants of the Independence Square. During this celebration, Independence will be recognized for the 13th time as a Tree City USA and Tree Line USA community by the Arbor Day Foundation.
    So come on out, explore the healthier side of Independence. Stroll through our picturesque parks, eat our fresh and local produce and enjoy the city we all call home. Get Movin’, Get Healthy!
    For more information on the 2013 Park Trot 5K, please visit www.independenceparktrot.com. For information regarding the Independence Farmers’ & Craft Market, please visit www.independencefarmersmarket.com or contact the Independence Health Department at 816-325-7185.
    Page 2 of 2 - Larry Jones, MPH, is the director of the Independence Health Department.

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