Dowagiac, chamber announce Walking Challenge

Published 6:02 pm Thursday, May 30, 2024

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DOWAGIAC — A pair of local entities have teamed up to offer community members a way to stay active and connected this summer while exploring what the area has to offer.

The Dowagiac Chamber of Commerce and City of Dowagiac recently announced the Dowagiac Walking Challenge. The free challenge consists of completing nine designated walks – ranging from one mile to four miles in length – in and around Dowagiac between Memorial Day and Labor Day 2024. Once a walk is completed, participants are asked to post a photo of themselves with the hashtag #DowagiacChallenge, with those who complete the challenge receiving a commemorative Dowagiac Walking Challenge designed by Eric Stovern.

“We want to showcase some of these locations on social media,” said Eileen Crouse of the Dowagiac Chamber of Commerce. “We want to see happy, smiling faces around the greater Dowagiac area.”

Registration is free and can be done by clicking the registration link located on the Greater Dowagiac Chamber of Commerce Facebook page or online at Detailed information on the designated walks in the challenge and information on how to receive your free patch on completion will be shared once registered.

The designated walks are:

  • Dowagiac Woods Nature Sanctuary (Frost Street) – 1.5 mile loop
  • Downtown Sculpture Tour – 2 mile loop
  • Riverside Cemetery – 1.5 mile loop
  • Rudolphi Wildlife Refuge- 1.1 mile loop
  • SMC Campus 1.5 mile exploration of campus
  • Rudolphi Woods – 3.9 miles
  • Mansion Walk – 1.5 miles – Lee Mansion to Gardner Mansion and back
  • Russom Park to Dowagiac Airport – 2 miles out and back
  • Wind Songs Sculpture at Middle School to Burling Park – 2 miles out and back

According to Crouse, the idea for a challenge was hatched last year after speaking with city officials about how to motivate people to enjoy the greater Dowagiac area. More than 120 people have registered since the challenge was announced last week.

“We chose woods, we chose urban spaces and everything in between,” she said. “There’s a lot going on in the area. You have a chance to get healthy, you have a chance to get out and learn about the community and see public parks. We’re pretty excited about it.”