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Trenton Youth Challenged to Get Fit at African American Pride Festival

August 29, 2013 | Community News, Community News and Media, Trenton

On Saturday, August 10th, Trenton was all about fun and fitness as the city hosted its third annual African American Pride Fest Sports Expo.  With a goal to get young people moving and focused on healthy living, the Expo, held at Trenton’s Cadwalader Park, featured games, fitness challenges, food, and sporting activities, including football, basketball, soccer, golf, tennis and boxing.

Members of New Jersey Partnership for Healthy Kids-Trenton joined in on the fun by providing exciting, engaging and informative fun for young people..  “We set up several games and fitness challenges for children to take part in throughout the day,” said Shannon O’Connor, NJPHK-Trenton. “Our goal was to make sure that the children who participated understood that a healthy lifestyle can be fun, delicious and easy for them to make a part of their daily routine.”

NJPHK hosted several games at their event table, including: “Guess the Healthiest Fruits” for older children; “Foam Food Challenge”, where children ages three to nine years old placed foam cutouts of familiar foods onto a parachute that represented the USDA My Plate guidelines in order to learn the importance of eating a balanced diet of grains, fruit, vegetables, and protein, while limiting foods like ice cream, hot dogs, and cookies; and the “Fitness Dice Challenge” where children of all ages tossed two large, numbered dice to challenge themselves by completing a number of reps in exercises such as jumping jacks, arm circles and push-ups.

“A healthy lifestyle is integral to a child’s growth,” said Latarsha Burke, Executive Director, Trenton African American Pride Festival.  “Healthy eating habits, physical movement and brain stimulation all add to the development of a well-rounded child which translates into a productive adult.  It is for these reasons that each year the Trenton African American Pride Festival uses its platform to create opportunities to engage in activities that will promote a healthy living lifestyle for our kids. Our partnerships with organizations like NJ Partnerships for Healthy Kids help us to be successful at our efforts.”

Marissa Davis, NJPHK’s project manager, noted how great it was to see the children challenge each other throughout the day as they took part in the NJPHK activities.  Fun giveaways, such as Frisbees, jump ropes and stretch bands were played with all afternoon throughout the sports field.

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