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Today, Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz will be kicking off another year of "Lighten Up Brooklyn" with a walk around Brooklyn Heights. "Lighten Up Brooklyn" was started a few years ago to encourage Brooklynites to lose weight and make their lifestyles healthier. And since he had stents put into his arteries last year, Lighten Up Brooklyn is a big deal to Markowitz. From his office's press release:

Markowitz, who underwent a stent procedure last summer, vowed to transform and lengthen his life through healthy eating and a committed fitness regimen. The borough president’s frequent energetic strolls through Prospect Park have helped him lose 26 pounds since last summer, and he kicks off the Lighten Up Brooklyn 2007 not only talking the talk, but also walking the walk!

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Markowitz will apparently show off his newly "svelte" look (though we think he showed it off at the opening of the Floating Pool the other week) at Columbus Park (Borough Hall Plaza - Court & Remsen Streets) at noon today to lead a walk to the Promenade. The other events include a Saturday walk along the Bay Ridge waterfront, a tour of Victorian Flatbush, a tour of Crown Heights and a Sunday walk from the Parachute Jump to Brighton Beach and back with Al Puma, a 77-year-old triathlete (earlier this year he participated in the Empire State Building run-up).

The entire press release after the jump.

Photograph at top of Markowitz cheering bicyclists during the Tour de Brooklyn by akinloch on Flickr; photograph at right of Markowitz at the opening of the Floating pool by Kathryn Kirk

BP MARKOWITZ TO WALK THE WALK FOR “LIGHTEN UP BROOKLYN”

Brooklyn Beep Marty Markowitz will show off his newly “svelte” build as part of Brooklyn’s annual anti-obesity and physical fitness campaign.

NOON

FRIDAY, JULY 20, 2007

COLUMBUS PARK (BOROUGH HALL PLAZA)

COURT STREET & REMSEN STREET

DOWNTOWN BROOKLYN

On Friday, July 20, Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz will join fitness-minded Brooklynites to kick off Lighten Up Brooklyn, an anti-obesity and healthy lifestyle campaign near and dear to his newly healthy heart. Markowitz, who underwent a stent procedure last summer, has vowed to transform and lengthen his life through healthy eating and a committed fitness regimen. The borough president’s frequent energetic strolls through Prospect Park have helped him lose 26 pounds since last summer, and he kicks off the Lighten Up Brooklyn 2007 not only talking the talk, but also walking the walk!

This year, Lighten Up Brooklyn features seven guided walks over three days, Friday, July 20 through Sunday, July 22. Each walk will be led by a knowledgeable local expert, will highlight a unique Brooklyn locale, and will be sure to entertain and educate while participants get their heart rates up.

The festivities begin on Friday at noon, when Borough President Markowitz leads a group of walkers through beautiful Brooklyn Heights, and events continue throughout the weekend. Each walk will also feature free prize giveaways, including gift certificates to New Balance and Modell’s sporting goods store.

Friday, July 20

Noon – Borough President Marty Markowitz will launch Lighten Up Brooklyn with a TGIF walk through scenic Brooklyn Heights. Walkers can meet at Columbus Park (Borough Hall Plaza) at Court and Remsen Streets for a walk to the Brooklyn Heights Promenade and back.

Saturday, July 21

8 a.m. – Urban Park Ranger Tom Kerr will lead participants on a morning bird walk in the Salt Marsh Nature Center. Walkers can meet at 3302 Avenue U.

11 a.m. – Walking Brooklyn author Adrienne Onofri will lead a foot tour of the Bay Ridge waterfront. Participants can meet at John Paul Jones Park at 100th Street and 4th Avenue for a scenic walk to the 69 Street Pier.

1 p.m. – Borough Historian Ron Schweiger will lead a group through one of Brooklyn’s best kept secrets, Victorian Flatbush! Walkers can meet at the Q train Newkirk Avenue station for an educational stroll through four turn-of-the-century Victorian communities. You won’t believe you’re still in Brooklyn!

Sunday, July 22

8 a.m. – The New York Walkers Club will meet at Grand Army Plaza for a brisk morning stroll around Prospect Park.

11 a.m. – Discover another way of life with a guided tour of Chassidic Crown Heights led by Rabbi Beryl Epstein and Yisroel Ber Kaplan. Walkers can meet at 305 Kingston Avenue between Eastern Parkway and Union Street.

1 p.m. – Hit the boardwalk with fitness guru Al Puma, the 77-year-old Brooklynite whose exploits as a regular in the annual Empire State Building Run-Up have earned him international fame. Participants can meet at the Parachute Jump for a walk to Brighton Beach and back. Just try to keep up!