This Year RiseVT of Windham County conducted its First Come Alive Outside Passport Challenge that encourage families to visit outdoor play spaces and Trails as well as local Farmer’s Markets and Libraries. This five-week program promotes family bonding through a local adventure. Each time a family earns 12 points they have a chance to go to their local prize center to pick out a RiseVT prize. At the end of the challenge if they earn 25 points or more they are entered into a raffle for a chance to win three different grand prizes. You earn points by visiting local trails, farmers markets, events, exploring your own back yard or having a no screen Saturday.

There were 980 passports distributed to all families at Guilford Central, Vernon Elementary, Townshend Elementary, and Newbrook Elementary schools, 100 members at the Boys and Girls Club of Brattleboro and Homeschool groups. The challenge began 9/21/2019 and ended on 11/1/2019. A raffle prize was available to all parents or guardians who participate in a brief RiseVT online survey and two $50.00 gift certificates to Dutton’s Farm Stand awarded to local parents. The grand prizes included two family season passes to the Brattleboro Ice Skating Rink, A Family Snowshoe pack, and $100.00 gift certificate to Sam’s Outdoor Outfitters. We would like to thank all of our community partners who collaborated with our RiseVT Windham County Program Manager to put together this program for the first time in our area.

All of the schools, homeschool groups, and libraries that participated have asked to do another Passport Challenge in the spring on 2020. One parent stated that; “we’re a physically active family but the passport empowered my kids to choose which activity we were going to do. They were also motivated by the prizes too. I think it is great, we love to see kids and families getting outside and being more active.” Another parent stated that what her child liked best was the variety of activities and being exposed to areas they never knew about even though they are a very active family.