My children and I were fortunate to attend Stop and Shop’s Healthy Kids Summit at Gillette Stadium yesterday. The goal of the event was to inspire parents and children about the importance of nutrition, exercise, and a balanced lifestyle. As someone who writes a blog about healthy eating and who also shops regularly at Stop and Shop, I knew I wanted to be at this event. But as a mother, I was also motivated by the fact that my children would have the chance to do a fun workout on the field at Gillette Stadium and meet a New England Patriots player.
The event exceeded my expectations from beginning to end. It started with a presentation by a Stop and Shop nutritionist, a YMCA president, a School Nutrition Policy Consultant for the Massachusetts Department of Public Health, and New England Patriots safety Patrick Chung. The presentation was an interactive discussion complete with questions for the children in the audience. My children were engaged throughout the presentation, and they learned a few things along the way. Healthy children need at least an hour of physical activity each day, and they also require 10 to 11 hours of sleep in order to function at their best. At mealtime, half of the food on their plates should be fruits and vegetables. Patrick Chung said that his approach to healthy eating is that he eats a very healthy diet for 6 days of the week, and then he eats whatever he wants on the 7th day.
After the presentation, the children went on the field to participate in 3 workout stations. The first one was an agility course, the second was a game called “stuck in the mud,” and the final station was field goal kicking at the end zone. My son almost kicked one through the crossbars, and he wants to keep practicing his field goals at home so that he can get a field goal the next time he’s on the field at Gillette. Both my children enjoyed all the activities, and it was surreal seeing them doing an agility workout along the 20 yard line.
The final portion of the event was a health fair upstairs at the Putnam Club complete with healthy snacks and information about keeping kids fit. They served turkey sliders, but in a way that I had never thought of before. Rather than using ground turkey to make the sliders, they served thick slices of turkey breast on the rolls. I liked this less processed approach to sliders. They also had a make-your-own trail mix station as well as fresh fruit, Cabot cheese, and yogurt. I was happy to meet Sally Sampson, the founder of Chop Chop magazine, at the health fair. Chop Chop is a non-profit magazine dedicated to encouraging families to cook real food together. I hope this magazine is a household name one day.
Stop and Shop put on a great event, and I know my kids were inspired by what they learned. I’d love to see more free public events like this to encourage today’s youth to focus on fitness and nutrition. I’m looking forward to attending this event again next year, and hopefully I’ll see a field goal next time.