Grantee Blog

Cycling Around Town with Ciclovia

Community Connections team joined the festivities during the New Brunswick Ciclovia on October 14, 2018.  Ciclovia was originally launched in 2013 with a collaboration between New Brunswick Tomorrow, Johnson & Johnson, the City of New Brunswick, and Rutgers University to promote active living. Over the years, it has grown to be an event that is supported by about 40 community partners.

During Ciclovia, several streets are closed to car traffic for five hours, and the members of the community are encouraged to enjoy outdoors by walking, bicycling, participating in the dance or group exercises, and by visiting the exhibit tables to learn about the local organizations and available resources. Then, when one gets hungry or tired, there are plenty of delicious food options offered by many of the local vendors. The day goes by as a perfect Sunday afternoon filled with outdoor activities for the entire family.

The Community Connections team participated in the Ciclovia events through the New Brunswick Tomorrow, the New Brunswick Community Farmers Market and Hub City Fresh Healthy Corner Store activities. Community members enjoyed the bounty of fruits and vegetables coming from a local farm, learned about nutritional aspects of fall vegetables, and they spun the Farmers Market wheel to win Market Bucks to help pay for some of their purchases. Our project partner, New Brunswick Tomorrow (NBT) is a lead organization involved in making Ciclovia a reality.  NBT and other community partners coordinated a group of high school students to sponsor some of the Ciclovia activities throughout the day, and Live Well-Vivir Bien exhibits at multiple locations informed the residents about healthy eating and active living resources in the community. The visitors also learned about the availability of healthier foods in the area corner stores that are participating in the Hub City Fresh Healthy Corner Store Initiative. Throughout the event, the residents had the opportunity to tell us what they thought about the impact of Ciclovia, and most of them suggested that Ciclovia increased their access to be more physically active.

About the Grantee

Rutgers The State University of New Jersey

Through its Department of Nutritional Sciences and Cooperative Extension units, Rutgers provides nutrition education, conducts nutrition- and health-related research, builds partnerships, and implements evidence-based strategies to improve the nutrition status, health and well-being of people throughout New Jersey.