YMCA’s Healthy Kids Day

The YMCA of Honolulu Healthy Kids Day is part of the Y’s national initiative to improve the health and well-being of families with fun active play and educational activities to help kids be healthy and reach their full potential.

The event features food, prize giveaways and more than 30 exhibitors highlighting the importance of physical activity, healthy lifestyle choices, and active play through fun, engaging and creative activities. Highlights of the event include:

  Children and family games, activities and resources, including an obstacle course, Native Hawaiian games, Honolulu Fire Department Keiki Fire House, YMCA Summer Program Fun Zone, health screenings, exercise demos, nutrition information, free keiki IDs.

  All day entertainment featuring headliner Hawaiian entertainer Walt Keala and a variety of youth groups showcasing groups doing hip hop, hula, jazz, Zumba, break dancing and martial arts.

*   Lots of great food offered at a nominal fee, with many healthy selections available.

Lisa Ontai, Chair of YMCA Healthy Kids Day, explains the thrust behind the initiative, saying, “Each summer, it is a battle against obesity for kids- research shows that kids can gain weight twice as fast during summer than the school year. Kids need both a combination of healthy physical activity and also healthy eating habits.

We will have a number of our YMCA Healthy Kids Days community partners sharing resources and information on how families can incorporate healthy eating into their lifestyles. Hawaii 5-2-1-0 Let’s Go Initiative will be there with its simple message of five or more fruits and vegetables, two hours or less of screen time, one hour or more of physical activity, and no sugary beverages each day.  We will also have United Healthcare Community Plan there with its specially-balanced meal portion plates that show you exactly the recommended portions of grains, proteins, fruits/veggies and dairy you should try to have at each meal.”

She continues, “The other two key messages at the YMCA Healthy Kids Day are how to stay physically active and also how to prevent learning loss during the summer. Research shows that without access to out-of-school physical and learning activities, kids not only gain weight, but can  fall behind academically. So we will have community partners, as well as all of our YMCA Summer Programs there- Summer Day Camp, Camp Erdman, Early Learning, Aquatics- to provide motivation, resources and some fun ideas of how families can incorporate a healthier routine at home and add enrichment activities to keep academic learning on track throughout the summer.”

One of the YMCA Healthy Kids Day food vendors, Triston Reynolds, chef and owner of Hawaiian Fresh Farms, previewed a dish on Wake Up 2Day that he’ll be serving at this event. As he plated the special vegetable wrap, he detailed that it has probiotic pickled beets, kale, Okinawan sweet potatoes, morning superfood pesto and herb farmers cheese on an organic flatbread. “This wrap is healthy and delicious. All of the vegetables in this wrap are grown by us at our farm,” continued Reynolds.

It’s this Saturday, April 11, from 9 am – 2 pm at Bishop Museum. Thanks to major sponsors UnitedHealthcare Community Plan, Office of Hawaiian Affairs (OHA) and other corporate and community sponsors, admission is free for kama’aina and military families with a valid ID.

This includes free entry into all Bishop Museum exhibits and Planetarium including the new traveling exhibit, Dinosaurs Unleashed. Free parking at Bishop Museum, Kapalama Elementary School and Farrington High School. Pre-register online to enter through the Express Entrance at www.ymcahonolulu.org or call 531-YMCA (9622).

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