WILDWOOD CREST — The borough has received special recognition through its participation in the statewide Mayors Wellness Campaign for the 2019 calendar year.

Wildwood Crest has been designated a Healthy Town to Watch by the New Jersey Health Care Quality Institute, in partnership with the New Jersey State League of Municipalities.

A total of 24 municipalities were recognized by the New Jersey Health Care Quality Institute. Seven were awarded the Healthy Town designation. Wildwood Crest is one of 12 New Jersey municipalities designated as a Healthy Town to Watch. Another 12 municipalities were recognized as 2018 Healthy Town in the Making.

Wildwood Crest’s recognition as a Healthy Town to Watch is an improvement from last year, when the borough was designated as a Healthy Town in the Making. Wildwood Crest is lone South Jersey community recognized as a Healthy Town to Watch for 2019.

Each year communities participating in the Mayors Wellness Campaign complete a comprehensive application outlining the research they’ve done to identify their community health needs, explain how they have organized their local Mayors Wellness Campaign committee, and highlight the actions they’ve taken to make their communities a healthier place to live, work, and play.

Wildwood Crest first promoted its Mayors Wellness Campaign initiatives in 2018 after establishing its Wellness Committee, made up of community volunteers as well as staff members from the borough Recreation Department. Among the programs in 2018 were a Wellness Weekend that included an employee basketball game and a wellness walk hosted by Mayor Don Cabrera. In addition, the borough hosted a community bike ride hosted by Cabrera that included discussions on bicycle safety.

In addition to those programs, in 2019 Wildwood Crest hosted a free health and wellness lecture series led by local health care professionals and held a “Vision of Wellness in Wildwood Crest” poster contest through Crest Memorial School. The Wildwood Crest Mayors Wellness Campaign also installed walkway markers along the Wildwood Crest Bike Path and along Sunset Lake to help walkers, runners and bikers determine distances traveled. The borough further promoted wellness through its renovation of the Sunset Lake area, already a popular area for walkers, runners and cyclists, to include a state-of-the-art kayak and paddleboard launching area.

The borough also hosts numerous indoor and outdoor fitness classes throughout the year, including its popular outdoor fitness classes on the Beach Pier, outdoor Zumba and boot camp classes at Centennial Park and sunset yoga at Sunset Lake.

Additional wellness initiatives are planned for Wildwood Crest for 2020. The borough will host its wellness walk on Saturday, April 25, and its employee basketball game on a date to be determined. And the annual Wildwood Crest 5K Beach Run is scheduled for Saturday, Aug. 9. In addition, improvements are set to be made to Sunrise Park, a beachfront park area, that will include the installation of fitness stations, a walking path, water spraying feature and an additional children’s playground.

“Wildwood Crest is proud to receive this recognition from the New Jersey Health Care Quality Institute,” Wildwood Crest Mayor Don Cabrera said. “The Crest has incorporated numerous health and wellness initiatives over the past few years and plans to add even more in the near future. You can’t find a more perfect community setting for wellness with our excellent beach, parks, events, pool, and bike path — not to mention our dedicated residents and vacationers. We’re proud of our many wellness programs and activities and, as always, we’re looking to add even more to serve our many residents and visitors.”

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