A few months ago, the Emmet County Wellness Coalition formed to tackle the Start Somewhere Walk and the Live Healthy Iowa 100 Day Wellness Challenge. While the Challenge is well under way right now, as the Avera Emmet County Challenge, the Coalition's mission certainly won't end when the event concludes May 1.
Emmet County Public Health director Kathy Preston told Coalition members Wednesday she had written a grant for a walkability study for Estherville - something she would like to see the Coalition tackle probably the first Friday in May.
Preston noted a number of barriers to talking in the community. Emmet County Public Health is addressing the issue of clients trying to reach its offices with plans for a walking path extending north from the county annex to downtown - a far better alternative for young mothers without transportation who currently have to push baby strollers under the railroad underpass - sometimes with semis coming at them.
The walkability study is a fantastic idea, one that's long overdue. It would fit very well with the city's plans for recreational trails that could serve multiple purposes of recreation, fitness, helping the environment and allowing people pedestrian access to services in Estherville.
We hope the city embraces this study with open arms when its presented with the results.