Temporary art exhibition at Pier 62/63 ready for its close-up; great photo opportunity as passers-by stop to check it out

Seattle Parks and Recreation announces a temporary art exhibition from the National Council on Education for the Ceramic Arts (NCECA) on Pier 62/63 that will be in place through Saturday, March 31, 2012.

The temporary exhibition, called “Weather or Not,” is an outdoor dynamic exhibition of collaborative temporary installations and works using clay in a way that interacts with the weather. The event is free and open to the public.

This exhibition is part of NCECA’s 46th Annual Conference taking place in Seattle from March 28-31, 2012 at the Washington State Convention Center: http://nceca.net/static/conference_home.php. The conference’s theme, “On the Edge,” was developed especially for the Seattle/ Pacific-Northwest region where more than 170 related exhibitions will be sited.

Please direct inquiries about the use of Pier 62/63 to:
Dewey Potter, Seattle Parks and Recreation, at 206-684-7241 or dewey.potter@seattle.gov.

Please direct inquiries about “Weather or Not,” or other National Council on Education for the Ceramic Arts events in Seattle, to Marge Levy at margelevy@comcast.net.

Seattle Parks and Recreation Recognized as an American Heart Association Fit-Friendly Company

City agency takes steps to decrease health care expenses, increase productivity

Seattle Parks and Recreation has been recognized for helping employees eat better and move more.

“Physical activity and employee wellness are important priorities at Seattle Parks and Recreation,” said Acting Superintendent Christopher Williams. “We are honored and excited to be recognized by the American Heart Association as a Platinum-Level Fit-Friendly Company. This recognizes our efforts to set a good example for the public we serve, and is a neat fit with our Healthy Parks, Healthy You Initiative (http://www.seattle.gov/parks/healthyparks/default.htm), our effort to promote physical activity and wellness in Seattle.”

We’re committed to providing the best workplace environment possible, which benefits the health of both the public and our employees. Platinum-level employers:

  • Offer employees physical activity options in the workplace.
  • Increase healthy eating options at the worksite.
  • Promote a wellness culture in the workplace.
  • Implement at least nine criteria outlined by the American Heart Association in the areas of physical activity, nutrition and culture.
  • Demonstrate measurable outcomes related to workplace wellness.

To meet these criteria, Parks and Recreation has made the change to healthy offerings in its vending machines throughout the 26-community center, 10-pool system, and regularly offers incentives to employees to engage in at least 30 minutes of exercise every day. Parks is also hosting 18 sites for the Heart Association’s National Walking Day on Wednesday, April 4. For details, please see http://parkways.seattle.gov/.

The Fit-Friendly Companies program creates positive change in the American workforce by helping companies make their employees’ health and wellness a priority.

American employers are losing an estimated $225.8 billion a year because of health care expenses and health-related losses in productivity, and those numbers are rising. Many American adults spend most of their waking hours at sedentary jobs. Their lack of regular physical activity raises their risk for a host of medical problems, including obesity, high blood pressure and diabetes. Employers face $12.7 billion in annual medical expenses due to obesity alone.

The American Heart Association is working to change corporate cultures by motivating employees to start walking, which has the lowest dropout rate of any physical activity.

Recognition is a critical component of the Fit-Friendly Companies program. Employers who join this program qualify for official recognition by the American Heart Association. They are listed on the program’s national website, Seattle Parks’ website, and materials for the upcoming August 25 “Big Day of Play” at Magnuson Park (http://www.seattle.gov/parks/healthyparks/big_day.htm).

“The Fit-Friendly Companies Program offers a unique, easy-to-implement opportunity for agencies to increase employees’ physical activity, which will help improve their health – and their employers’ bottom line,” said Seattle Parks Recreation Director Sue Goodwin. “Even people who haven’t exercised regularly until middle age can reap significant benefits by starting a walking program. A study published in 1986 in the New England Journal of Medicine found that some adults may gain two hours of life expectancy for every hour of regular, vigorous exercise they performed.”

For more information about the Fit-Friendly Companies program and how it is helping to improve the health of Americans by focusing on an activity that is convenient, free and easy, call 206-632-6881 or visit www.startwalkingnow.org.

About the American Heart Association

The American Heart Association is devoted to saving people from heart disease and stroke – America’s No. 1 and No. 4 killers. We team with millions of volunteers to fund innovative research, fight for stronger public health policies, and provide lifesaving tools and information to prevent and treat these diseases. The Dallas-based association is the nation’s oldest and largest voluntary organization dedicated to fighting heart disease and stroke. To learn more or join us, call 1-800-AHA-USA1 or any of our offices around the country, or visit heart.org.