A Passport to a Healthy City
In 2012, the City of Westland, Michigan, began issuing passports to a healthy city.
It’s actually an ongoing campaign that promotes healthy, active lifestyles for all of Westland’s residents.
“We do this through the development of fun, convenient programs created as a result of strong public and private partnerships between the City of Westland, local businesses and its residents,” said William R. Wild, Mayor of Westland. ”By encouraging our residents to live a healthier lifestyle through education, diet and exercise the goal of this campaign is to become recognized as one of the healthiest cities in America.”
Traveling throughout Westland and enjoying a healthy meal at one of our many restaurants, visiting the William P. Faust Library, the Westland Friendship Center, playing at our parks, as well as golfing or ice skating are only some of the many activities that can lead to a healthier lifestyle. “We want all residents to fill their passports and show that they have the dedication to take my challenge and become a healthy member of the All American City,” said Mayor Wild.
One of the most popular programs has been the Buddy Up Program, which has been part of Mayor William R. Wild's Passport to a Healthy City since its inception.
Statistics show that 35 per cent of Americans or 78 million people in the U.S. are considered obese. Research has shown that a “buddying up” can be the difference between failure and success with any weight loss plan. Previous Buddy Up programs have included the popular six-week triathlon where participants had six weeks to complete a triathlon's worth of biking, running and swimming. New in 2016 was an optional weight loss challenge where the top three participants with the most weight loss percentages won a prize.
“The heart and soul of the program is Buddy Shuh, who was a finalist on the reality TV show The Biggest Loser,” commented Mayor Wild. ”The City of Westland has been very fortunate to benefit from his experience and knowledge and his easy going demeanor and quick wit endears him to Buddy Up participants.”
Throughout the program, the city offers health tips, exercise regimens and a healthy nutritional diet plan. Each year more than 200 people participate in the program and Buddy Uppers have collectively lost more than 1000 pounds since its inception.
There are also many venues for families to stay active in Westland. The City of Westland is home to the Mike Modano Ice Arena, named after the hometown NHL Hall of Famer, and features several hockey and figure skating opportunities.
Westland’s highly rated municipal golf course offers an affordable golfing experience as is perfect for beginner golfers yet challenging enough for the seasoned pro. Centrally located in Tatton Park is the new All American Farmers and Artisan Marketplace, which also features the H20 Zone Splash Park and the country’s fifth largest continuous play structure, the Play Planet, which is visited by thousands of area children each summer season.
Mayor Wild is not just the Mayor of Westland. He is the manager of the Westland Wild Wings, a hockey team that takes on the Alumni Red Wings team every year in a charity match. The annual Wild's Wings versus Red Wings Alumni Hockey Game typically takes place in March.
Mayor Wild laces up his skates with the Westland Wild Wings as they take on a team from the Detroit Red Wings Alumni Association every year. Former Red Wing greats like Darren McCarty, Dino Cicirelli, Peter Klima and John Ogrodnick have entertained fans at the game while raising money for improvements to the Arena. The game is open to the public for a minimal fee.
“I truly believe that an active lifestyle enhances your life tremendously,” said Mayor Wild. “There is endless research on the benefits of eating a balanced diet and exercise. I can say that it gives me clarity and the energy I need to lead the city, be a husband, a father and a business owner.”
Landmarks Along the Mission to be Green continued
Seniors Receive Major Attention! continued