May 09, 2013 | Myrna Anderson

For the second year, Calvin's many commuters will join a city-wide challenge.

Last year, a large percentage of the Calvin community walked, ran, rollerbladed, longboarded, carpooled, bused or biked to campus during Greater Grand Rapids Active Commute Week. In fact, Calvin’s 1,130 trips for the event far outdistanced the participation of other member organizations. The commute week, held May 13–17 is sponsored by the Greater Grand Rapids Bicycle Coalition in honor of National Bike to Work Week. Roy Zuidema, the director of Healthy Habits, the college’s wellness program for faculty and staff, is hoping that even more students, faculty and staff will take up the challenge this year.

How did Calvin’s 1,130 trips from last year break down?

Four hundred-twenty nine of those were walking, 406 were by bus, 279 of those were by bike and the rest were by “other.” So, it was basically walking, busing and biking. Calvin has a lot of commuters when we define commuters the way we do. We just have to get them to take a few minutes to log their trips.

What is currently the longest commute to campus?

David Hoekema (philosophy professor) commutes from Holland by bike and bus once a week. Bob and Ellen Alderink (designers) have carpooled from Hudsonville with others for 25 years. Tom Jager (emeritus math professor) bikes year round.

What are the prizes?

Every day next week there will be a drawing. I think they’re for $100 Meijer gift certificates.

How did you participate?

I biked from the west side of Grand Rapids—nine miles one way.

Why is an event like this important?

Healthy Habits really wants to promote health from a holistic standpoint. This particular challenge potentially enhances our physical as well as our spiritual, mental, environmental, and social health and well-being.

What kind of participation are you hoping for this year?

I’d like to double what we did last year. I was blown away by what we did last year. Calvin really made a good impression on the community.

Active Commute Week, May 13–17

Starting Monday, all of the following count toward Calvin's total commutes:

  •  Taking the bus

  •  Walking/Running

  •  Longboarding

  •  Rollerblading

  •  Carpooling

  •  Biking

 How it works:

1. Each day next week, go to

2. Click the blue "Read more" button under "Active Commute Week Challenge."

3. Under "Track Your Trips," click "Part of Employer Challenge Team."

4. Fill out the form and click "Submit." Make sure that you select "Calvin

College" from the drop-down list.


  • Healthy Habits will be offering incentives in addition to the daily and weekly Active Commute Week prizes:

  • A Healthy Habits back-pack to anyone who logs eight or more commutes duringthe challenge week.

  • Healthy Habits quarterly credit (1.0) for anyone who logs eight or morecommutes during the challenge week (0.5 credit for 4–7 commutes).

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