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Innovation News

Pokemon craze gets people on the go across Greater Cincinnati



Health fads are nothing new, but Pokemon Go is taking the craze to an entirely new level by generating innovative ways to get people moving.
 
Pokemon Go debuted in the U.S. on July 7, and since then the app has been downloaded more times than Tinder. The augmented reality game encourages users to walk around and “catch” Pokemon that are living or hiding in real stores, parks, historic sites, museums and other public buildings.
 
In Cincinnati, Pokemon are showing up at the Cincinnati Zoo, bars and restaurants in Over-the-Rhine and Great American Ballpark. Pokemon Go events have already been planned for Jungle Jim’s Fairfield and Washington Park.
 
Articles touting the health benefits of Pokemon Go have been featured on a range of media outlets, including Huffington Post and Washington Post.
 
Cincinnati is already the fourth healthiest city in the U.S., so lucky for Tristate residents there are already a number of local tools that could help Pokemon Go users find the elusive and rare beasts.
 
Dan Korman and Katie Meyer’s book Walking Cincinnati offers walking routes in 32 neighborhoods that are no doubt home to many Pokemon.
 
Downtown walkers can also take advantage of the Go Vibrant walking paths to find urban Pokemon. Outlying Pokemon might be found in some of the region’s great parks; Cincinnati was ranked as having the seventh best park system in the country after all.
 
The arts-inclined pedestrians might catch Pokemon near the 100-plus ArtWorks murals, and those who are inclined can climb some of the city’s hillside stairways in search of Pokemon, cardio and burning thighs.
 
Physi app users might find Pokemon near their sports fields or play dates, and soon there may even be a Pokemon Go activity or event.
 
Users of wearable health tracker like Fitbit or iWatch will see their points increase, particularly if they’re integrated with local health startups like SparkPeople or Strap, although it remains to be seen if Pokemon Go will be woven into fitness engagement challenges.
 
Across the river Live Well NKY is promoting a diverse assortment of activities to encourage health and fitness, and perhaps some Pokemon may live nearby as well.
 
Area Pokemon Go players have no shortage of places to explore to capture Pokemon, earn points and burn some calories.
 

Read more articles by Julie Carpenter.

Julie Carpenter is a writer, editor and educator with a background in cultural heritage tourism, museums and nonprofit organizations.
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