On June 10th,the North Plainfield Safe Routes to School Committee along with representatives from the NJ Department of Transportation, North Plainfield Board of Education and Modell’s Sporting Goods held our annual Safe Routes to School awards ceremony at Stony Brook School. At the event, all of our local crossing guards were recognized for their outstanding service to the community and each one was presented with a framed certificate of appreciation. We would once again like to thank all of our crossing guards for all they do to keep the students of North Plainfield safe on their way to and from school each day.
After the crossing guard awards concluded, we presented the Modell’s Miles that Matter: Walk to the Shore Challenge Awards. The Miles that Matter program was established to encourage K-8 students to walk-to-school on a more frequent basis to improve physical activity and reduce traffic congestion near our schools. For each day that a student walked, they receive a half-mile credit along our predetermined route from North Plainfield to Island Beach State Park. Credits were tabulated on a monthly and participating students received certificates of recognition for each milestone accomplished and a place of honor on the school wide tracking chart. At year-end, the top three finishers at Somerset, West End, East End, and Stony Brook were recognized with a framed certificate and an invitation to attend an upcoming Somerset Patriots baseball game. Due to the generous support of Modell’s Sporting Goods, we were also able to raffle off one $50 Modell’s gift cards to the top-15 finishers at each school. We would once again like to thank Modell’s for all their program support this year. For our Walk Across America Challenge students at our four participating schools walked a combined 5,273 miles exceeding our original goal of 3,814 mile goal from Bangor, Maine to San Francisco, CA, nice work students!
During our event, we also presented three Distinguished Service Awards to North Plainfield Mayor Giordano, Stony Brook Principal Cathy Kobylarz, and NPBOE Business Administrator Don Sternberg, all of whom have made significant contributions to the success of our program over the last four years. Without their tireless and continual support none of our current accomplishments would have been possible. The NPSRTS Committee also recognized the generous support of our three primary financial sponsors: NJ Department of Transportation, Office of Bicycle and Pedestrian Programs; NJ Department of Health, Office of Nutrition & Fitness, Shaping NJ Partnership; Modell’s Sporting Goods our chief corporate sponsor. Thanks you again for supporting the work of this outstanding program.
Our event concluded with the NJDOH-Shaping NJ joint groundbreaking and ribbon-cutting for the Stony Brook Playground Expansion Project. Due to the outstanding work of Ed Ostroff, the Director of Operations and Auxiliary Services for NPBOE, we were able to push up the project completion date from September 3rd to June 10th. This means that our children are now able to enjoy the expanded playground equipment through the end of the school year and over the entire summer. Ed, we are so grateful for all you did to move up the completion date and to get this project done in record time. Congratulations to you, your team, and your contract partners.
Finally, we especially want to thank Karin Mille NJDOH, Office of Nutrition and Fitness, Shaping NJ Partnership; Dr. Katherine Kraft National Coalition Director from America Walks; and everyone associated with the Shaping NJ Partnership for all their support and guidance during the planning, funding, and construction process. We did it! Thanks again.