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Published August 22 2012

Olympian Smock, area athletes to join downtown Streets Alive on Sunday

FARGO – Area residents will get a brush with an Olympian and future Olympic hopefuls this weekend.

At Sunday’s Streets Alive event, Olympic triple jumper and North Dakota State University alumna Amanda Smock will be among several athletes on hand to get Fargo-Moorhead residents active and moving.

This is the second Streets Alive of the summer, which shuts down three miles of streets in downtown Fargo-Moorhead and encourages residents to get out of their cars and be active.

The first event in July drew nearly 3,500 people, according to Rory Beil, director of the Dakota Medical Foundation’s Healthy People Initiative, which organizes the event.

This time, Beil is particularly excited that Sunday coincided so well with the end of the Olympics, allowing Smock to be able to join.

And Smock is excited, as well.

“I sent her a note asking if she’d want to do it, and she said ‘absolutely,’ ” Beil says.

In addition to Smock, other area athletes will be on hand. Fargo South grad and University of Oregon athlete Laura Roesler and NDSU alumna Laura Januszewski, who both competed in the 800 meter Olympic track trials, will attend. NDSU pole vaulter Leslie Brost, marathoner Eric Loeffler and javelin thrower Riley Dolezal, both NDSU alums, are also expected at the event.

The big draw of Sunday’s event, Beil says, is the “Olympic Hour,” which will be located on Broadway near the Fargo Theatre starting at 2 p.m. Each of the athletes will display his or her respective skills, and around 2:45 Smock will show off some triple jump drills on a portable runway and sand pit.

Among other organized activities on Sunday, participants can shoot hockey pucks with members of the Fargo Force at the US Bank Plaza or join in free group events at Oak Grove Park, such as Zumba, yoga, hula-hooping and more.

The weather forecast so far looks to be favorable for Sunday’s outdoor activities, and Beil hopes that Smock’s participation will help get people excited about coming out for the event and embracing an active lifestyle.

“Amanda lives and encourages that in her professional life,” Beil says. “There’s a natural match there.”

If you go

What: Streets Alive

When: Noon to 5 p.m. Sunday

Where: Downtown Fargo and Moorhead

Info: For more information, as well as a map of events and closed streets, visit www.fmstreetsalive.org.

Readers can reach Forum reporter Sam Benshoof at (701) 241-5535