Zagster Comes to Rochester

At the end of last month, the City of Rochester opened its bike sharing program to the public! Through a partnership with the company Zagster, 340 bikes will be available at 46 stations in the City around the downtown area. The program will give residents a healthy way to get around town whether it be to commute to work or just for fun. To use the bikes you must have a smart phone and credit card in order to pay the $1 per 30 minute fee. To sign up and view a map of the station locations. For the last several years, Rochester has been named a Bronze Level Bicycle Friendly Community by the League of American Bicyclists. Bringing the bike share to Rochester is another great step the City of Rochester is taking to make Rochester a bike-friendly city.To learn more about what you can do to support healthy communities and improve access to programs like this one, contact Mike Bulger at or 585-224-3171.

Summer Meals on Wheels initiative expands

Last year, the Summer Meals Partnership of Rochester piloted mobile summer meals by sending food trucks around to 4 different locations across the city. The hope was to be able to reach more kids at places like libraries, parks, and playgrounds in areas where summer meals are less available. The pilot was successful, which allowed them to expand the program this summer. Foodlink and the Rochester City School District are both participating in the program to reach a total of nine new mobile sites - on top of the dozens of regular sites all over town. Foodlink's stops include: Conkey Corner Park, Lincoln Library, Arnett Library, Maplewood Library, Lyell Library, Phyllis Wheatley Library, and Susan B. Anthony Park. A big thank you goes out to WXXI, 13 WHAM, and Spectrum, who came out earlier this month to showcase the initiative. To view a schedule of the food trucks' stops! To learn more about the Summer Meals Partnership of Rochester, contact Dina Faticone at or 585-224-3126.

Play Streets Come to Treyer St. & Greeley St.

Recent research shows Play Streets are an effective way to increase play time, build community, improve perceptions of neighborhood safety and support the physical and social emotional development of kids everywhere! Our Healthi Kids research shows that many kids are playing on our residential streets here in Rochester. This comes with the dangers of speeding cars, traffic, and distracted driving. It's time we make the places kids already are safer! That's why we're working with Beechwood Neighborhood Coalition and FLRT Block Club (Project HOPE) to pilot play streets in the City the last two weeks of August. We're shutting down two streets in BOTH neighborhoods to provide a safe and fun place for kids to play before the start of the school year! Each site has fun games, healthy snacks, smoothie socials, skateboarding demos, painting playful sidewalks and MORE! Want to learn more or become a play champion in your neighborhood? Reach out to our Policy & Research Associate Jenn Beideman at or 585.224.3151!

Making Recess a Little More Colorful at School

Through our partnership with the Rochester City School District, School 23 will be getting their sidewalks and playgrounds painted with different stencils before the new school year. Patterns include a basketball court, nature themed graphics, animal foot prints, shapes, chess and checkers, four square courts, and butterfly hopscotch (pictured above!). A big thank you goes out to Sherwin-Williams, who supplied the paint for the project. Parents and volunteers have been working hard this summer to clean up the sidewalks and courtyards and get them painted. Another thank you goes out to MVP Healthcare, who also volunteered their time to help us paint! This project is part of Healthi Kids' goal to help the schools create "comprehensive school physical activity plans". To learn more about creating healthy schools, contact Alicia Evans at or 585-224-3172.

Buying More, For Less

One of the barriers that residents face in the City to eating fresh fruits and vegetables is that they are often more expensive than unhealthy foods. A recent article shared the results of a project that tried lowering the price of fresh produce in a New York City supermarket. They found that more people purchased and consumed fruits and vegetables when they were priced lower. Healthi Kids' and partner research in area stores has shown that fresh fruits and vegetables cost more in small, neighborhood markets. That's why we are working with select stores around the city to help them develop a model where they can offer healthy foods at lower prices. Foodlink also introduced this idea last year, when their Curbside Market became part of SNAP's "Double Up Food Bucks" program. Several farmer's markets across the City also participate in this program. To learn more about healthy communities, contact Mike Bulger at or 585-224-3171.

Back to School!

It's that time of year again where kids and families are getting ready to head back to school. Many schools will be hosting their back to school events over the coming weeks. School 43's event will be held on Thursday, September 14th from 5:00-7:00 pm. The Rochester City School Districtalso hosted their "Start Strong" event on Saturday, August 26th at Brown Square Park! It's also a great time to start thinking about different ways you can have a healthy school year. To read more about what a healthy school year could look like, check out our Healthi Kids blog this month. Healthi Kids' Erick Stephens and Alicia Evans share tips for starting off on the right foot, and keeping with it all year long! To learn more about healthy schools, contact Alicia Evans at or 585-224-3172.