Step toward a healthy summer

Participate in the 8th annual Step To It Challenge

Participate in the 8th annual Step To It Challenge

The Step To It Challenge is an annual four-week physical activity competition designed to get people back into a fitness groove after the long winter. Hennepin County sponsors the challenge along with the Minnesota Twins and participating communities.

Last year, 24 communities competed for awards to the most active community, the most actively engaged community, and the most active residents. The winners will be recognized at a Twins game during the summer.

All are welcome to participate, even if they live in communities that do not engage in the competition. Employees are also encouraged to show support and participate on kickoff day at noon May 3 on the south plaza of the Government Center.

It’s never too early to start stepping

The city of New Hope’s most active resident last year, Roger Rubin, surpassed one million steps.

“Don’t wait for steps,” Rubin said. “I do a lot walking, a lot of cycling, even in the winter, cycling on a stationary bike.”

Rubin and his wife, Barb, have been participating in the challenge every year since it started in New Hope.

“Part of it was my wife is a retired physical therapist and was active,” Rubin explained, adding that the challenge has helped them to do more things together such as walks, aerobic routines, and stretches.

“Don’t just wait for the Step To It to get active,” he said.

Making green strides

The challenge also encourages “green strides” as a way for participants to be more physically active while reducing carbon emissions and natural resources. Some green activities include:

Lose the gas, use your feet
Try to walk or bike to places instead of driving while completing daily tasks. Also consider car-pooling to work or social events to reduce your carbon footprint.

Waste bin mapping
Count your steps while you walk around neighborhood common areas with a map, marking public spaces where recycle bins and garbage cans are available and well-labeled. Request additional bins from city and park officials or businesses, if needed.

Park cleanup
Organize a group river or park cleanup to remove waste and recycling from public spaces. Compete for most bags of litter collected or largest area cleaned.

Trash art mural
Go on a scavenger hunt to collect litter in your neighborhood. Select clean items – after disposing of other litter – to create an artistic mural from the waste in your community.

Learn more at