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Mason City selected for Blue Zone site visit

by Matt Marquardt –

MASON CITY – Mason City is a step closer to becoming a Blue Zones Project Demonstration Site.

The applications submitted by the finalists reflected strong commitment from community leaders, local employers, and government officials, as well as prior success in collaborative community initiatives.

The 11 finalist communities in the first application round are: Ames, Clinton, Muscatine, Spencer, Cedar Falls, Davenport, Ottumwa, Waterloo, Cedar Rapids, Mason City, and Sioux City.

“Congratulations on being selected,” said Courtney Greene, Wellmark Media Relations. “This is a big day for Blue Zones. All the communities did a great job of submitting applications. The site visit will be like an interview. The Blue Zone committee will be able to better understand the individual needs of each community we visit.”

In late February, the Blue Zones Project Team will begin visiting the 11 finalist communities in a series of site visits—which are similar to a job interview. The community will learn more about what it means to become a Blue Zones Community™ while the Blue Zones Project Team will have the opportunity to better understand each community’s readiness. Site visits conclude in March and the first round of demonstration sites will be announced in May 2012.

In March, Wellmark and Healthways will announce the smaller communities that have been selected for site visits. This will multiply the opportunities for all communities across the state from the original commitment of 10 demonstration sites to many more.

For more information on the Blue Zones Project, visit

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