Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan challenges Lansing communities to increase physical activity during Community Partners in Health's 2012 Winter Warm-Up

Winning teams in Lansing area will receive wellness grants to promote community health

January 18, 2012

LANSING — Nine local communities from the greater Lansing area are participating in the 2012 Winter Warm-Up, which runs from January 21 through March 10. The free eight-week program, sponsored by Community Partners in Health, encourages local residents to launch the new year with a commitment to healthy living, and motivates participants to get active.

The initiative begins on Saturday, Jan. 21, with a Community Challenge contest, sponsored by Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, that gives financial rewards to the community with the most active team. Participants are meeting at 9 a.m. at the Lansing Mall (Macy’s entrance, 5530 W. Saginaw Hwy, Lansing) to begin the Community Challenge. Competing teams sign up members to log minutes of physical activity, which are then converted to miles. BCBSM is awarding grants to all participating teams, with larger rewards earmarked for communities with the most logged miles and most active participants. The grants will be used to support public health and wellness projects in each community.

“Delhi Township is excited to return this year to participate in the Winter Warm-Up and Blues’ Community Challenge. Last year we were able to spread the excitement, double our participation numbers from 2010 and win first place. We hope to be able to do the same this year. This program is a great way to bring communities together to help promote the importance of healthy living through a fun-spirited competition where everyone is a winner regardless of physical abilities,” said Tricia Vander Ploeg, deputy supervisor and team coordinator for Delhi Township.

The Saturday kick-off activities include health screenings, health and wellness displays, information about incentive prizes and motivational testimonials from past participants.

New this year is the Healthy Lifestyle Promoters Awards, which honor an individual in each participating community who demonstrates a strong commitment to living, modeling and promoting healthy habits.

“We are excited to once again work with Community Partners in Health to promote healthy living. Our greater Lansing municipal partners bring so much enthusiasm to this program, and it is such a pleasure to see this community come together in support of healthy living.” said Shelley DuFort, senior community liaison for the Michigan Blues. A total of 1,676 participants from nine communities logged more than 130,200 miles during last year’s eight-week challenge.

To register for the Blues’ 2012 Community Challenge, sign up at the CPH website,, or at the Lansing Mall on Saturday mornings during the eight-week program. In addition to the kick-off event and weekly walks, final celebration festivities will be held in March at the Lansing Mall to announce the winners of the Blues’ Community Challenge grants and to recognize individual achievements.

Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, a nonprofit organization, provides and administers health benefits to nearly 4.3 million members residing in Michigan in addition to members of Michigan-headquartered groups who reside outside the state. BCBSM also offers dental, vision and hearing plans. Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan and Blue Care Network are nonprofit corporations and independent licensees of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. For more company information, visit

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