South Mountain YMCA Invites Families to Health Kids Day on Saturday
Friday, April 27, 2012 • 1:21pm
MAPLEWOOD, NJ – The South Mountain YMCA will host its 21st annual Healthy Kids Day on Saturday, April 28 from noon-3 p.m. The theme for the day is “Take On Summer.”
David Berry, senior director of Youth and Wellness, said, “Healthy Kids Day promotes and encourages and educates everyone about the importance of leading healthy lifestyles, primarily for kids.”
According to Berry, the day includes family fun activities that teach children and their families about healthy lifestyles, including blood pressure screenings, lessons on eating healthier and a family obstacle course with prizes.
“We have lots of volunteers coming in to help,” Berry said. “There’s a local Girl Scout troop that’s going to be running the physical activity course to earn their merit badges.”
Perhaps the biggest attraction will be Spider-Man, who according to Berry, has been one of the biggest crowd drawers in past years. Spider-Man will talk about the day’s theme of eating healthy and the importance of being active. His program will be at noon, 1: 15 p.m. and 2:15 p.m.
According to Berry, The South Mountain YMCA has partnered with the South Orange-Middle School District and the elementary physical education program, in which the children have completed a six-week activity challenge, including physical and nutritional goals.
“If they bring their log here to Healthy Kids Day, they’ll get their PALA (Presidential Active Lifestyle Award) from President Obama. It’s a certificate from him and a patch,” Berry said. “The elementary school that turns in the most activity logs gets a package of about $700 worth of physical fitness supplies to be able to use for physical fitness classes.”
During the day, the YMCA will announce a national movement called “Summer Learning Loss.” “The children, educationally, will lose out a lot if they are not properly kept active – both from an educational standpoint and physical activity standpoint and a nutritional standpoint,” Berry said. “So, we’re starting off in September having to relearn, get re-active and refocusing on their healthy eating.”
Healthy Kids Day will be held at the South Mountain YMCA at 13 Jefferson Ave., Maplewood, rain or shine.
Patrice Kubik is participating in a hyperlocal journalism partnership between The Alternative Press and Seton Hall University's Department of Communication & The Arts designed to give students real-world experience.