The first day of Spring is Wednesday, March 20th! Hopefully, warmer temperatures are here to stay. With the start of each season, there are new opportunities to promote wellness in your community. This wellness blog will cover some fun ideas your department can do to promote wellness this Spring.
Springtime means an increased emphasis on gardening. According to a Harvard University study, 30 minutes of gardening can burn as many calories as a variety of other activities - in addition to the added nutrients of the fresh fruits and vegetables that can be harvested from your garden.
If you're interested in how to start or improve upon a garden at your home or in your department, please check out NRPA's Community and Home Garden webpage! Each month, this webpage updates with a new curriculum and provides step-by-step instructions on a different gardening topic.
Additionally, the NCRPA Wellness Initiative has featured a lot of content on community gardening in the past. Check out our Wellness Toolkit Community Gardening page for more information.
Gardening is not the only opportunity to get people outdoors this Spring. Wildflowers are often a major draw to get people flocking to parks. If your agency has any green spaces that a lot of wildflowers bloom in, there are a few easy tips to get people even more excited about coming to check them out.
One example of a great program idea that comes to mind are wildflower walks throughout your park. Each year, a wildflower pilgrimage is held at Great Smoky Mountain National Park annually.
For 68 years, people have flocked to the Smokies to partake in the pilgrimage to see all of the wildflowers. Although this is an example of a large-scale program, your department can hold similar events.
Find out when the wildflowers will be at their peak and invite your community out. Set up a few simple flower crafts, educate the public about the types of flowers they will be seeing, and offer additional springtime activities - the possibilities are endless! This type of event gets people up and walking around your park - something that is always encouraged!
One tip that you can take to personally improve your health and wellness is to take advantage of the longer days. Daylights saving time kicked in and although we lost an hour of sleep, we gained an hour of sunlight. Use this extra daylight to get outside and active after your workday.
I hope that this wellness blog has given you some ways to celebrate spring in your department! If your department has any unique springtime wellness programs, I'd love to know about it. Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.