On Friday, February 22, Grand Canyon National Park and special guest Darryl Haley kicked off a weekend celebration of Black History Month and Healthy Parks Healthy People. This groundbreaking event was a part of the Grand Canyon Diversity Council’s effort to increase diversity and inclusivity in Grand Canyon National Park.
Haley is a former New England Patriot, Ironman Triathlete, and world-renowned fitness trainer. He also hosts WHUR’s (Howard University Radio) Fitness Friday on the Steve Harvey Morning Show. Haley participated in the celebration in order to experience the Grand Canyon first-hand and to spread the word that there are a wide range of opportunities for people of varying fitness levels to experience their national parks.
On Friday, Haley was introduced to the park by participating in a ranger-led walk along the Rim Trail. On Saturday, he joined a hike down the Bright Angel Trail, 3.2 miles and 3,800 feet to Indian Gardens for an overnight stay. Throughout their adventure the group shared their views on diversity and inclusion, national parks, fitness and health, as well as exchanging personal stories. On Monday, Haley concluded the weekend’s events and his personal experience at Grand Canyon with a public presentation at the Shrine of the Ages Auditorium.
Black History Month is celebrated each year in February and commemorates the lives and accomplishments of African Americans. The National Park Service Healthy Parks Healthy People program promotes the fact that all parks are cornerstones of health, for people and the environment, and encourages everyone to seek the benefits of physical and mental health, healing, and social well-being in their national parks.