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They parked, stepped out and zipped up against a light, but steady, cold rain that didn't seem to bother either them in the least. While no one watched, they began their regular walk just like each one of the 99 — with stories and conversation on the tips of their tongues, observations ready to be recorded, photographed and discussed The one-year anniversary of their ambling adventure.

Their th walk together in the past days; Eleanor and Meadows logged as streets and 1, of their journey. The two women, friends for 42 years since they met in second grade in the elementary school in Sunnyland, are now in the second year of their project to walk the full length of every street in Peoria. All of them. Each and every one. And not the Married ladies looking sex Peoria 1, city streets officially claimed by the city of Peoria for plowing, sweeping and sealcoating purposes, but all 1, streets identified by CityStrides.

That's the phone app that syncs with Garmin satellite technology and electronically records every step of the way. They first thought they might be able to complete the project in one year. Now, not one step less committed to the goal, they have stopped making predictions. The "when" is not important to them. What can be a meaningless, empty homily for some, is for Jacobsen-Wood and her buddy Hosbrough an immutable statement of fact — it's the journey, not the destination. They've handed out cash to panhandlers, been mistaken for sex workers, dodged sketchy canines, gotten cursed at for no apparent reason by strangers, yawned their ways through cookie-cutter subdivsions, witnessed drug deals and Ubered their nearly frost-bitten and wind-burnt selves back to their parked cars instead of walking one more single solitary step farther down the road.

And along the way, they learned a lot. About friendship. About social justice and racial inequality. About community. And, maybe most importantly, about themselves. We get in our cars, we drive to a neighborhood, we walk and we get to go back to our car and drive home to our safe neighborhood," Jacobsen-Wood said in an interview in March before COVID put this story on a shelf for almost nine months. I don't want to feed in to that, but I also want to be cognizant and aware of people that have legitimate concerns — like if you live in a neighborhood and don't want to send your kids out to play because it's not safe, that's not acceptable".

Pedestrians in Peoria, as the Facebook document of their journey is titled, was a natural development of their friendship. Because of their mutual love of the mindful and healthful benefits of of walking, running and fitness, they trained for and entered the Honolulu Marathon in They chose the event for two reasons:.

Participants have 24 hours to finish.

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People can run, jog or walk as fast, or as slowly, as they please, and Those events led to the Last Annual Vol State Road Race in the summer of — a mile trek across Tennessee that was a supreme test of physical pain and endurance. Jacobsen-Wood developed debilitating blisters that nearly ruined her feet for good. My time was two seconds faster because Mary Sue let me cross the finish line first to make me feel better because I had been slowing us down.

They heard about the 'Walk Every Street' effort from somewhere and then entered a prolonged period of contemplation, research and planning before making their own decision. Let's do it. On weekends, they typically reserve 6 to 8 hours a day for walking.

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On average, about 16 to 18 miles on Saturday and another 10 to 12 miles on Sunday. We make the time," Jacobsen-Wood said. Both women returned to school in the last decade and earned masters degrees. Jacobsen is a librarian in the Peoria Public Library system; Hosbrough is a counselor and has just opened up a private practice.

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She offers clients a walk in the park, if that is a preferred way of talking about what brought them together. She has a lot of practice in the field. I was very afraid of a lot of things — that's what anxiety is, the fear of the worst things going on. Irrational fears that people are looking at you and laughing at you," Hosbrough said in the March interview. Categorizing walks into good ones and bad ones doesn't work.

Good can be bad.

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Bad is often very, very good. Hosbrough recalls a pre-dawn walk in sub-freezing temperatures to watch the a. But a. We didn't know if we just didn't understand how sunrises work, or if the world was ending this day, or what. We waited about 5 or maybe 10 minutes and decided to just continue our walk because we were too cold to stay there any longer and had to get walking again," Hosbrough said.

We then went back down to the river to get some pics, and you could immediately feel the rays of the sun warming the temperature up a bit," she said. Jacobsen-Wood has witnessed the racial disparity in the city from the sidewalk level. She prefers the walks in the predominantly Black neighborhoods of South Peoria to the walks in the predominantly white neighborhoods of North Peoria.

More life, she says. More character. More authenticity. More interesting. It's a testament to what makes Peoria great, the people.

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There is no official celebration planned to follow the final walk on the final street — whenever or whatever that street might be. The unfocused ending of this particular journey in no way minimizes the meaning of the walks. Like a married couple that has already celebrated one of the precious metal anniversaries, Jacobsen-Wood and Hosbrough commonly finish a sentence or thought the other one has started.

I am no athlete. I was always the last person picked for school gym. Even my friends didn't pick me first," Jacobsen-Wood said. Facebook Twitter. Two Peoria women are gaining more than fitness on their walk down every street in the city. Scott Hilyard Journal Star.

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