Picnic at Halverson Elementary School

Published 9:08 am Saturday, November 27, 2010

The legacy of the AARP/Blue Zones Vitality Project continues with a recent initiative at Halverson Elementary School in Albert Lea.

Halverson Elementary School kicked off the school year with its annual fall picnic, made healthier this year with servings of lean hamburgers, wheat buns, carrots and fresh fruit. Families and teachers enjoyed getting to know each other at the picnic, which builds school spirit. -- Submitted photo

In 2009, Albert Leans started learning how to make simple lifestyle changes in order to live longer, healthier lives. Halverson is keeping that momentum going with a program to boost the health of students and their families, many of them at risk of obesity and poor health.

With local grants and donations, the Halverson parent-teacher organization, called SPIRIT, has launched “Healthy Halverson Families” to:

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Educate families on nutrition

Introduce students to healthy activities

Strengthen the connection among students, families, teachers, staff and the surrounding community

SPIRIT kicked off the program by transforming the annual fall picnic into a healthier meal with lean hamburgers; cheese slices; choice of wheat or white buns; carrots and fresh fruit; water and milk to drink; and freeze pops for dessert, a non-fat treat.

Submitted photo

The program will continue this school year with healthy snacks on state testing days; canoeing and rock-wall-climbing for fifth-graders; ice skating and bowling for sixth-graders; and two open houses for Halverson families.

SPIRIT thanks the following sponsors of this initiative: Albert Lea Medical Center, Freeborn County Cattlemen’s Association, Hy-Vee, Nelson’s County Market, Freeborn County Dairy Association, Korner Mart, Sampson Dairy, parent Karen Hagen and Kwik Trip.

The next healthy Halverson family event was a VIP Breakfast on Nov. 19 when students brought a “Very Important Person” in their life for a breakfast of healthy choices.

Submitted photo