Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan and Wolverine Worldwide sponsor fifth annual ArtWalk in support of ArtPrize

Sept. 12, 2013

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan is sponsoring the 5th Annual ArtWalk in partnership with Wolverine Worldwide. This collaboration provides an opportunity for the community to incorporate a health and wellness element into ArtPrize, the world's largest public art competition. Members of the community will get an up-close look at ArtPrize via a volunteer lead walk cumulating nearly 2.5 miles. Depending on your stride, one mile is about 2,000 steps and burns roughly 100 calories. ArtWalk will be held on Sept. 21, the first Saturday of the 19-day art contest.

“Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan is proud to continue our support of ArtPrize alongside Wolverine Worldwide with our sponsorship of ArtWalk,” said Jeff Connolly, president of West Michigan Operations and Managed Care at Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan. “We’re looking forward to helping visitors not only experience the wonderful works of art in the competition, but also bring people out for ArtWalk to integrate and promote exercise into this incredible event.”

Connolly will join Blake Krueger, chairman of the board and chief executive officer and president at Wolverine Worldwide, in Rosa Park Circle in downtown Grand Rapids at 8:30 a.m. to greet and get walkers up, moving and off on their walk. Participants can choose to go on a self-guided tour or a tour guided by ArtPrize volunteers. No prior registration is required.

ArtWalk has two routes this year. Volunteers will take walkers through the Center City route first, which is one mile long, return to Rosa Park for a quick break and then proceed through the West Side route, which is 2.2 miles. It’s anticipated that guided walks will conclude at 11:00 a.m.

Before the walk or during the break, participants are encouraged to stop by Rosa Parks Circle, where Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan and Blue Care Network will offer free hypertension and BMI screenings while Wolverine Worldwide will provide proper shoe fitting demonstrations to educate individuals on how to choose shoes that fit their feet to avoid injury, calluses, and blisters.

In addition to sponsoring ArtWalk, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan’s Grand Rapids office, located at 86 Monroe Center St. NW, will be hosting an ArtPrize entry by Michael Johnson, an adult with Down Syndrome who uses art as therapy and a way of expression.

Visit to learn more about ArtWalk and the 2013 ArtPrize competition.


Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, a nonprofit organization, provides and administers health benefits to more than 4.4 million members residing in Michigan in addition to members of Michigan-headquartered groups who reside outside the state. 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