FRESH DIRT > Santa Cruz Mayor Ryan Coonerty has declared Tuesday, Nov. 1 Extra Mile Day, along with more than 200 mayors in cities all across the country. This is the second consecutive year that U.S. cities have participated in Extra Mile Day, which was established by the Extra Mile America Foundation.
Shawn Anderson, executive director and founder of the Extra Mile America Foundation, first achieved notoriety in 2009 as he biked 4,000 miles across America, spreading his positive message and encouraging others to go above and beyond. Anderson met with more than 200 people he felt were making positive changes to their communities and awarded $1,000 each to the 10 people he deemed the most inspiring.
So what does it mean to “go the extra mile,” exactly? Well, according to Anderson, “Going the extra mile is doing more than the normal … more than expected. Going the extra mile is getting back up after we’ve been knocked down, despite whatever has happened,” he says. “Going the extra mile is where change starts.”
The 2011 proclamation for Extra Mile Day calls upon each person to “’go the extra mile” in his or her own life, [and] to acknowledge all those around them who are inspirational in their efforts and commitment to make their organizations, families, community, country or world a better place.”
At its core, Extra Mile Day aims to encourage people to take personal responsibility to make an impact on the world around them. This can mean supporting the people around you, volunteering your time, or donating money to organizations that help the community. However you choose to do it, Anderson and mayors like Coonerty ask that you remember to “go the extra mile” today and do a positive deed to improve your community.