Bike event in Little Havana promotes awareness of healthy living

The Little Havana Little Healthy organization promoted healthy living while building community this Saturday afternoon in Riverside Park at its third annual bike event.

The purpose of the organization, which has been around since 2014, is to “improve the living conditions in Little Havana and make it a healthier place to live,” according to the website.

Around 50 kids and adults filled the park, playing in bouncy houses, playing basketball, riding bikes, and participating in other activities.

Riding bikes was the main element of the event. It involved a four- to five-mile ride around the Riverside Park neighborhood, in groups of about 10, while being escorted by police.

The event also had sponsors who helped spread awareness of healthy living in South Florida including the Health Alliance of South Florida; Florida Rx Card, a discount prescription agency, and many others.

Jasmine Corea, an AmeriCorps Volunteer for Little Havana Little Healthy, was the leader of the event.

“This event is for everybody no matter the age. Especially new citizens and new people of the community that want to know more of what is going on around them and what is available to them,” Corea said.

She added that the organization wants to reach as many people as possible so they have events across South Florida, from Riverside Park to Jose Marti Park, among others.

In previous years, only adults rode bikes during the bike event because they were the target audience, but this year kids were able to ride as well. “Each year we are trying to expand,” Corea said.

Ruben Van Hooidonk, 41, is a local resident and bike participant. “I love this event,” he said. “I wish more people were here to enjoy it. It embraces the community while also making people aware of organizations that can lead to a healthy life.”

Juanita Rodriguez is the mother of someone who participated in biking. “My daughter loves to meet new people so this environment is great for her,” she said.

She added that both she and her daughter will go to the next event that Little Havana Little Healthy is having. “We are new to Miami so I get to meet new people from the area and my daughter can learn early in her life how important it is to live healthily,” said Rodriguez

The group’s next event has not been announced, but it has weekly fitness sessions, including boot camps and Zumba classes. For more information, go to


From St. Petersburg, Florida, Quincy now studies journalism in Miami at Florida International University. He was a staff news writer at the student newspaper PantherNow and has experience writing and making packages about sports, controversial topics and Miami-related events.