OPEN News from SHAPENashville

Follow OPEN updates this week on Twitter at #OPENMusicCity

Here's Your Thursday Update!

Wednesday was a huge day at #SHAPENashville with presentations, keynotes, and meetings! The Exhibit Hall opened and the US Games exhibit was a hub of activity for #OPENMusicCity, FitnessGram, and making new friends! Did you meet the OPEN Cheerleaders? Look for them all across the Convention area along with other OPEN trainers. Do you have questions about OPEN or a suggestion for a new module? Flag down our OPEN trainers and share your needs! We are all about #teachershelpingteachers!

Dedicated Convention Website for #SHAPENashville!

Not on social media? No worries! OPEN has a dedicated website for all things #SHAPENashville! Open a web browser, go to and you can access our embedded @OPENPhysEd Twitter feed without being on Twitter! Also, links to each day's edition of OPEN News from #SHAPENashville will be posted so you can access to all the info you need to know!

OPEN Impact Awards!

Congratulations to our OPEN Impact Award Winners announced at the Country Music Hall of Fame last night:


Eat Move Grow is unquestionably the most impactful grassroots partner that OPEN has had the honor to work with. Donna Newton and Amy Karam lead a dynamic and loving team of health educators and child advocates who serve more than 6,000 disadvantaged children throughout rural Louisiana.

The 2017 Pedaling for PE campaign was designed to celebrate the amazing health improvements that Rural Louisiana schools have been able to make under Eat Move Grow’s guidance and leadership. OPEN is just one component of the work being done by Donna and Amy’s team. Eat Move Grow is helping schools build smarter lunchrooms, improve dental health, and ignite physical activity opportunities throughout the school day for children they serve.

OPEN has been looking for a partner like Eat Move Grow since 2015 – a like-minded grassroots organization with strong leadership, boots on the ground, and a giant heart. To say that the Pedaling 4 PE initiative was a success would be an understatement.

Vanessa Wigand

In the state of Virginia, Vanessa Wigand coordinates standards, curriculum and instructional initiatives for physical education, health education, and driver education.

At a time when other disciplines in Virginia are losing ground, the Virginia Board of Education continues to show unwavering support for requiring health and physical education instruction in grades preK -10, and for rigorous electives courses in grades 11 and 12 – including offering the NASM Personal Trainer credential to high school seniors.

Vanessa also happens to be a SUNY Cortland graduate and one of Aaron Hart’s most important professional mentors. Nearly 15 years ago, she gave Aaron and his young wife Andrea the opportunity to present at the Virginia Health & Physical Activity Institute at James Madison University. Her advice and wisdom has served Aaron ever since. This summer, we’re excited to announce, that Vanessa and JMU will host the East Coast OPEN Trainers Conference during the 2018 Health & Physical Activity Institute.

In the Fall of 2016, Vanessa reached out again to build an important partnership with the SUNY Cortland AMP Lab, through the Research Foundation for SUNY. This partnership provides funding opportunities to SUNY Cortland Graduate and Undergraduate Students as they help Aaron align OPEN Curriculum Modules to the Virginia Physical Education Standards of Learning.

These custom OPEN documents, along with a library of health education resources, are hosted on the Health Smart Virginia website, which receives approximately 500,000 hits each month. This work helps Virginia’s health and physical educations better serve as “life coaches” for students across the great state of Virginia.

Artie Kamiya

Artie Kamiya is a relentless supporter of grassroots physical education and has gone above and beyond any reasonable call to foster and encourage young physical education professionals seeking to make an impact on our community.

Artie started his career as an elementary physical educator and retired as the senior administrator for K-12 Health and Physical Education with Wake County Schools. But Artie never really retired. His work with the Great Activities Newspaper began in 1982 and continues today, serving physical educators around the country. He’s also the founder of the National Physical Education & School Sport Institute and in 2017 hosted the OPEN Trainers Conference, allowing OPEN to build their National Training Team to 44 trainers.

Artie is also a founding member of the OPEN Development Council. This small group of volunteers guided Aaron’s work as the team built the instructional framework for what would become an essential resource for more than 33,000 OPEN members. OPEN was built to be a grassroots service for physical educators everywhere. Artie Kamiya embodies this spirit and leads by example as he continues his work on the Board of Directors for SHAPE America.

OPEN National Trainers Presenting Today!

OPEN National Trainers will be presenting at the following sessions today:
  • Lori Dunn - Checking the Pulse of Physical Education - Advocating for State and Nation, 11:15 - 11:45 AM, Convention Center Davidson B Foyer
  • Brian Devore and John Jones - Technology Tools to Enhance 50 Million Strong, 3:30 - 5:30 PM, Convention Center 107A

Not on social media? Join the @openmc group on Remind! It will send text messages to your phone number with events and special announcements about things happening during #OPENMusicCity at #SHAPENashville. If you have the app, open it and search for the group @openmc. Don't have the app? No worries. Click here to open a weblink to join! Then, the messages will come to your phone automatically via text message! How easy is that?