Medical Center volunteers cheer on Bike to School Day participants

The Nittany Lion greeted dozens of local children and their families during National Bike to School Day on May 8.

Since 2012, the annual event has taught children about bike safety and encouraged exercise. Penn State Health joined Derry Township and its police department and school district, along with many community volunteers, to provide encouragement, advice and refreshments.

Volunteers gathered at the Memorial Field parking lot at Cocoa and Elm streets in Hershey. Cocoa, mascot of the Hershey Bears hockey team, was also there. They handed the participating elementary school students and their families safety gear, information and a healthy snack.

Kids had a chance to pose for photos with the lion, who gave them reflective wristbands. Penn State Health employees distributed about 150 bands.

“Promoting healthy lifestyles is one of Penn State Health’s primary areas of outreach, to help improve the health of our community,” said Jim George, Milton S. Hershey Medical Center community relations director. “We’re happy to team up with Derry Township School District through programs like National Bike to School Day to help children be active at an early age.”

Hershey Medical Center promotes bike safety and exercise in many other ways. For example, Zagster’s Hershey bike share program offers 40 bikes on demand to students, faculty, staff and visitors, providing a convenient, affordable and healthy way to get around campus.

In October 2018, the Medical Center opened a new 10-mile recreational trail on and around the Hershey campus in partnership with the Susquehanna Area Mountain Bike Association.

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