Floridians Celebrate National Park Week
April 23, 2015
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 23, 2015
Contact: Communications Office
TALLAHASSEE—This week (April 18–26), the Florida Department of Health encourages all Floridians to get outdoors for National Park Week. Sponsored by the National Park Foundation and the National Parks System, this week is dedicated to exploring amazing places, enjoying affordable adventures, discovering open spaces and taking advantage of Florida's natural beauty.
"Being active outdoors is a great way to stay healthy and happy," said State Surgeon General and Secretary of Health Dr. John Armstrong, "Florida's extensive park system is ready when you are."
Florida is home to 12 national parks and 171 scenic state parks and trails. These parks offer recreation opportunities and natural beauty that help strengthen families, expand local economies and build community pride across the state. According to a recent survey published by the National Recreation and Park Association, nearly three in 10 adults do not spend daily time outside and about half of these individuals spend fewer than 30 minutes outdoors.
Exploring Florida's parks during National Park Week is a great way to be physically active. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and Prevention cite regular physical activity as important for good health and as especially important for reaching or maintaining a healthy weight. The CDC recommends 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity, 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity aerobic activity or an equivalent mix of the two each week. In addition, outdoor physical activity also helps to reduce risk for high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, heart attack, stroke and several forms of cancer, as well as symptoms of depression and anxiety.
Florida's national parks include:
- Big Cypress Park—Ochopee, FL
- Biscayne Park—Miami, Key Biscayne and Homestead, FL
- Canaveral Seashore—Titusville and New Smyrna Beach, FL
- Castillo De San Marcos Monument—St. Augustine, FL
- De Soto Memorial—Bradenton, FL
- Dry Tortugas Park—Key West, FL
- Everglades Park—Miami, Naples and Homestead, FL
- Fort Caroline Memorial—Jacksonville, FL
- Fort Matanzas Monument—St. Augustine, FL
- Gulf Islands Seashore—Gulf Breeze, FL
- Gullah Geechee Cultural Hertiage Corridor—Jacksonville, FL
- Timucuan Preserve—Jacksonville, FL
Watch a video created by the National Park Service for National Park Week at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0ykvO8UN3g0.
Healthiest Weight Florida is a public-private collaboration bringing together state agencies, not-for-profit organizations, businesses and entire communities to help Florida's children and adults make consistent, informed choices about healthy eating and active living. To learn more about how to be active and make nutritious food choices, visit www.healthiestweightflorida.com.
The department works to protect, promote and improve the health of all people in Florida through integrated state, county and community efforts.