Escondido, CA
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Escondido Wins Healthy Infrastructure Award

The City of Escondido has been awarded the 2020 National Fitness Campaign Healthy Infrastructure Award for the Mountain View Fitness Court in the category of Innovation for cultivating: “the most forward-thinking, unique and powerful strategy, idea or campaign element that can be shared as “best practice” to all Campaign partners in the following year.”

Each year, National Fitness Campaign designates winners of the Healthy Infrastructure Awards (HIA) in five distinct categories. Beginning in December, award recipients are showcased across all NFC platforms, are featured in regional and national promotions and storytelling, and receive limited edition decals to commemorate their achievement. 

Escondido opened its long-awaited first Fitness Court at the end of 2020. The city is the first Model City in the region and this initial Fitness Court in Mountain View park will be one of five being funded to build a Healthy Infrastructure network across the community. 

According to the award, which was given to Deputy City Manager Joanna Axelrod, “The City of Escondido’s innovative approach involves looking at their city as a whole, mapping out the needs of the community in each area, and building the Healthy Infrastructure necessary to improve the lives of its citizens. A creative online community engagement survey was used to get users feedback on the location and placement of the future Fitness Courts to make sure it is being sited in an accessible and populated area for all residence. Alongside their new Fitness Courts, the city plans to build a new bike park to promote additional forms of outdoor activity and contribute to the opportunities to exercise for the city’s youth.” 

Escondido’s first Fitness Court in Mountain View park is shaded by an elegant shade structure provided by USA Shade to make exercising possible even in California’s hot summer months. Escondido plans to install the next two Fitness Courts this spring at Kit Carson Park and next to the city library. 

Axelrod commented, “The impact these Fitness Courts will have in the community is huge in terms of health… I knew right away that this would be a perfect partnership. [NFC] realized that they wanted not only to help us fund one Fitness Court but believed we had the leadership, support, and infrastructure to be a Model City in the state and are helping us fund five… We are always seeking contributions and support from organizations that believe in helping their community improve their health and quality of life by bringing this type of free, healthy recreational asset to the community.”

Danielle Lopez, Assistant Director of Community Services, added, “The timing of this is great. Especially in such a unique time, these are places where people can go and safely get their exercise. There’s an app to track workouts or compete with other people and it shows you where the other fitness courts are located. It’s free fitness and it’s good for all ages and all fitness levels.”

For more information about the court, visit:

Read more about the award here:

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