Healthy Hometown meeting update and walking audit workshop

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The public is invited to participate in the upcoming Walking Audit Workshop to be held on Monday, Aug. 5, from 8:30 - 11:30 a.m. From left are Tim Ahlers, Amy Speed and Denise Schneider, "Champions" for the healthy hometown project. (Press photo by Caroline Rosacker)

By Caroline Rosacker

The planning committee for Healthy Hometown Powered by Wellmark met on Monday, June 24, in the Guttenberg Municipal Hospital & Clinics education room. 

The purpose of the meeting was to create a health and well-being vision for Guttenberg, discuss current community initiatives, identify and prioritize tactics leading to vision, and organize for success. 

Aaron Swanson, Wellmark Healthy Hometown representative, opened the meeting with a summarization of the previous planning session. He directed committee members to break into smaller groups to work on developing a plan of action covering three target areas; eat well, move more and feel better. At the end of the meeting representatives from each group shared their plans. 

Eat Well 

The Eat Well committee discussed working with the Women, Infant and Children (WIC) program to increase awareness and provide cooking demonstrations and educational information to increase the intake of fresh market produce into program participant's diets. 

Their mission is to connect the dots between at-risk, low-income, and food insecure individuals to government agencies that can provide them with vouchers to purchase healthy fresh produce at Guttenberg's Farmers Market. They shared concerns about the limited number of fresh produce vendors at our local farmers market in an agriculturally rich community, and discussed incorporating fresh produce into the mini food pantry available at the Family Resource Center. 

Feel Better

The Feel Better committee  considered ways to increase employer and employee participation in an evidence-based healthy living program. The group created a timeline to reach out to area employers to meet and discuss a plan of action using SMART – Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Time-Bound goals to help employers create a wellness program suitable for their employees.

They also discussed reaching out to Clayton Ridge School personnel to increase their awareness of the Healthy Hometown committee. 

A brief discussion was held before the breakout session ended concerning the community's availability to areas that promote social engagement and community connectivity. 

Move More

The Move More committee worked on plans for the upcoming Walking Audit Workshop.  

The group plans to reach out to committee and community members to encourage participation in the upcoming audit. The workshop is scheduled for Monday, Aug. 5, and will include a tour of our community from the perspective of someone visiting the area. It will cover various areas throughout Guttenberg designated for walking, biking and hiking. Further information on the walking audit follows.

Walking Audit Workshop 

The City of Guttenberg invites members of the community to join them in a Walking Audit Workshop. The Healthy Hometown walking audit is scheduled from 8:30 a.m. - 11:30 a.m. on Monday, Aug. 5. Participants are asked to meet at the Guttenberg Municipal Hospital and Clinics (GMHC) Education Room located at 200 Main Street. 

During the audit, area residents will learn how Guttenberg can be more walkable and enjoyable for all. The group will be hitting the walking trails, so comfortable clothing, shoes, sunscreen and bug spray are recommended. 

If you are interested in participating in the walk, please RSVP by Monday, Aug. 1, to City Manager Denise Schneider at or by calling the city office at 563-252-1161.  Rain date for the event will be Wednesday, Aug. 7. 

The Healthy Hometown Powered by Wellmark committee is on a mission is to improve the overall health of community members.

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