'I Will' campaign promotes outdoors

Published: Friday, Jan. 23 2009 12:00 a.m. MST

The Outdoor Foundation is expanding its "I Will" campaign into the Salt Lake Valley, challenging all residents to connect two young people with the outdoors in 2009.

The program, which began last year, has the support of Salt Lake County Mayor Peter Corroon and Salt Lake City Mayor Ralph Becker. It's part of The Outdoor Foundation's effort to get youths outdoors, active and healthy.

"Salt Lake County is a leader in promoting healthy lifestyles and applauds the foundation's efforts," Corroon said. "One of our priorities is to get our (residents) — young and old — off the couch and away from their remotes to exercise in our great outdoors."

To participate in the "I Will" program, residents commit to take at least two children outside to experience any outdoor recreation activity this year. They're also pledging to say:

I will help improve the mental and physical health of children in our country.

I will campaign to support future environmental ambassadors.

I will fight to save outdoor recreation in the U.S.

I will work to increase the number of participants in outdoor recreation.

And I will partner with The Outdoor Foundation to create change.

"I hope all Salt Lake City residents join this effort and take the pledge," Becker said. "Given Salt Lake City's comfortable climate, outdoor-oriented lifestyle, increasingly walkable and bikeable city, and proximity to some of the nation's best hiking, skiing and biking trails, it's no wonder that those of us who live and work in Salt Lake City are motivated to participate in outdoor recreation activities."

The Outdoor Foundation is a nonprofit organization dedicated to inspiring future outdoor enthusiasts.

E-mail: jpage@desnews.com

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