HAPPY FRIDAY. What a week. It was busy with work and life, and it was tough given what happened at UNCC. I am still trying to wrap my head around all of it and will have more words soon. In the meantime, our community is holding up all of the students and faculty of UNCC in strength and support.
I am just getting a chance to share a recap of the Open Streets 704 event that I attended last weekend. I almost skipped sharing this recap since it’s rather late but I want to bring awareness to this awesome event. I’d love to see more like this in my city and around the country! I also decided to share this because I receive a lot of questions about living in Charlotte and this is a great way to showcase our growing and vibrant city.
OPEN STREETS 704
From 1-5 p.m. last Sunday, 4 miles of city streets were closed to cars and open to pedestrians and cyclists so that Charlotteans could get out, get active and have fun. B-Cycle was also on site providing free bike rentals.
I want to call attention to this statement from the Open Streets 704 website, “Open Streets 704 is also about changing our perspective on how a community can interact with each other in a healthy, car-free, environment rather than simply creating another street festival.”
I LOVE THIS! I love visiting walkable cities and places where bikes are commonly used to get around. While Charlotte still has a long way to go in regards to walkability, the changes that I’ve seen in my 10 years of living here have been inspiring. This city is growing and changing like crazy.
When I arrived I immediately felt a buzz in the air. Open Streets 704 had such a positive vibe and everywhere you looked you could see people who were in the moment and enjoying the gorgeous day. The weather couldn’t have been more perfect.
Finn and I alternated between walking and jogging and covered a little over 3.5 miles total. He was very entertained by everything that was going on and it was sweet to watch him studying different things, smiling and laughing.
Open Streets was divided into four different zones: Arts & Science, Family, Green and Wellness. Our first stop was the Wellness Zone to visit the Novant Health booth.
Note: this portion of the post is part of a partnership that I have with Novant Health and their current Live in the Moment initiative.
Novant Health was an activity host and offered games, breathing sessions and standing yoga mini-classes. Their focus was on offering activities that promoted mindfulness and living in the moment. A perfect compliment to the overall goal of Open Streets 704, and something that our community (and country…and world), definitely needs more of.
I jumped into a yoga session.
Finn had fun observing and narrating. Haha. 🙂
The classes were led by Allison from Heart of the Matter Yoga. It was lovely to finally connect with her in person after years of online following. She’s pretty much my new favorite person for introducing me to this partner stretch. My back and lats said, “ahhhhhhhhhhh.” You should 100% try this stretch with a friend.
After wrapping up at the Novant Health booth, we took off to explore more of Open Streets. I continued to be blown away by the energy of the event. It honestly didn’t even feel like I was in Charlotte! The streets were packed with scooters, bicycles, local businesses, families, performers and more.
I made a quick stop by the Charlotte Water truck to refill my water bottle.
EBB + FLOW MOVEMENT STUDIO
My final destination was Ebb + Flow Movement Studio in NoDa to visit with my friend Madeline, meet owner Lauren and finally take a tour of the space! They are a new fitness concept offering a variety of movement-based classes like pilates, dance (so many cool dance classes!!!), yoga, barre, kettlebell and much more. Their mission is to help people feel better through movement and mindfulness. Sensing a theme for my day? 😉
It was the perfect way to end the day at Open Streets 704 and I cannot wait to partner with this studio to offer some upcoming trainings.
There were 7 dogs hanging out at Ebb + Flow. I am a big fan of dog-friendly establishments. There was a 4 month old Australian Shepherd puppy named Fiona. I immediately asked if that was a Shameless reference and it was…haha.
My perfect Charlotte-themed Sunday afternoon ended with a stop by one of my favorite local bakeries for some desserts! I got a slice of lemon cheesecake and carrot cake.
I’m very excited to share that in the next few days I will be announcing a May Mindfulness Challenge. It will be very simple, uncomplicated and easy to join. <3
Does your city have an Open Streets kind of event?
Is your city walkable/bikeable/pedestrian-friendly?
What’s your favorite walkable/bikeable/pedestrian-friendly city to visit? (US or abroad)
I live in Minneapolis and we have several open street events during the summer. It’s so fun! One of the streets that participates is a block from us so I always try to go. It’s nice to be able to stroll along the wide, open street and there are always so many people out and about!
Minneapolis is very very bike-friendly! We compete with Portland for the most bike-friendly city in the US. That surprises many people since it’s cold here a good 4-6 months of the year but I guess the weather doesn’t prevent the hard core people from biking during the winter. In general, we have lots of biking and running paths. That was one thing I really really missed when I lived in Charlotte. I know you guys have some nice running paths in certain areas but since the city isn’t on a lake or river, I think that impacts the # of bike/walk paths. We have many lakes within the city of Minneapolis plus the Mississippi River so there are SO many dedicated walking/biking paths along the water. Our city is also a big user of public transit. It’s not as great as other large cities as the best option in most areas is the bus, but people from all levels of affluence use the bus which is great!
Ha, hi! I was just about to comment the same thing. I am from Mpls and gosh, what do you think we have? 10 neighborhoods that do Open Streets? I think it started with Lyndale.
Glad to see Charlotte doing Open Streets too!
Glad you had a good week! That sounds like such a good event! Thanks for sharing, hope you’re having a great day.