February 2012 Highlights « BackPrintEmail Friend
Fuel Up to Play 60 in Illinois
Midwest Dairy’s partnership with the St. Louis Rams paved the way for a Fuel Up to Play 60 MVP Clinic on December 6 attended by more than 100 students from four schools chosen for their involvement in the program. Students listened to healthy eating and exercising advice from the Rams’ team nutritionist, participated in running, catching and throwing drills administered by Rams staff including player Chris Long, and engaged in HOPSports activities. They met and were photographed with Rams cheerleaders and Mascot “Rampage,” obtained player autographs, and were treated to a pizza and milk party. Each student received a bag filled with assorted Rams and Fuel Up to Play 60 items.
Later in the month, Long was part of a player photo and publicity shoot that produced images of him posing alone, with students, and with nutritionally rich food products. Many of the photos include a Fuel Up to Play 60 banner. The photos will be used for upcoming promotional activities, posters, Web postings, school mailings and other tactics through the balance of our contract with Long. His signature is also available to us for use in custom letters, thank-you notes, rewards or other materials. Additionally, we now have voice recordings of Long offering short, encouraging messages to students that we anticipate using in schools across the area.
Midwest Dairy Health and Wellness staff members Robin Levy and Sandra Brown were among those who participated in the Chicago Public Schools’ School Dining Manager Training involving cafeteria managers at four sites. The Fuel Up to Play 60 presentation at the meeting helped to show how Fuel Up to Play 60 and the Go For the Gold programs can work together to accomplish the Healthier US Schools Challenge. It also encouraged school dining managers to become more involved, and to highlight how Fuel Up to Play funding can help them achieve their goals. The session also provided quick and easy healthy eating/nutrition education examples that promote Food Groups to Encourage, especially dairy products, for use in the Fuel Up to Play 60 funding application.
To recruit new program advisors for Fuel Up to Play 60 (the ones who really do the school-level implementation of the program), Midwest Dairy put out a call to current advisors to ‘refer’ their peers to join their ranks. If the referral resulted in a new advisor, they could win an opportunity to watch the NFL playoffs at a party hosted by former Chicago Bear James ‘Big Cat’ Williams. The event in late January at the Cubby Bear in Lincolnshire included several health and wellness partners.Thanks to dairy producers Scott Halpin, Mike Kenyon, and Bll Deutsch and their family members who came to socialize with the winners. You can stay updated on Fuel Up to Play 60 in Illinois at the Chicagoland Activity page on Midwest Dairy.
The recent Fuel Up to Play 60 Cooking Show Challenge, in which students could submit online entries, provided great results. Illinois students submitted many quality entries, in which they videotaped mini ‘cooking shows’ they developed themselves to illustrate healthy recipes such as yogurt pops, dairy smoothies and parfaits, salads that included cheese and much more. The winning school for the state was Parkwood Elementary School, Elgin.
Chicago Bears’ center Roberto Garza is personally signing congratulatory letters to 20 Fuel Up to Play 60 program advisors, thanking them for their leadership in making their schools healthier places by implementing the program. The letters will be sent to each of these advisors so they can display them to illustrate their commitment to getting students to consume nutrient-rich foods such as dairy, and be active 60 minutes a day.
Students at Eastview Middle School in Bartlett were treated to a visit by Roberto Garza recently, as a reward for their Fuel Up to Play 60 participation. Students there have organized an after-school running club and featured free fruit and vegetable tastings during lunch. Nearly 1,000 students filled the school gymnasium to hear Garza talk about the importance of starting their day with a good breakfast and how exercise helps them both physically and mentally. “When you’re healthy and active your mind works a lot better and you have better focus,” said Garza. He explained how bad eating habits can lead students to want to sit on their couch and not study, and what that will mean for the goals they have set. “I may not get homework per se, but I am in the classroom six days a week,” said Garza. “If I don’t study, I’m not going to be prepared, and come Sunday I’m going to get my butt kicked.”
Garza also paid a visit to students at Parkwood Elementary School in nearby Hanover Park. Mike Kenyon of South Elgin, a dairy producer and Kane County Farm Bureau director, had the honor of introducing Garza. He gave the kids a perspective on the journey milk takes from the farm to their school. “Our job is to provide you with the best milk possible,” Kenyon told the students. “I drink the same milk you do - it’s clean and wholesome.” As a dairy producer, Kenyon was pleased with the Garza pitch. “It was so much fun. Those kids were just so excited; Roberto Garza is the perfect guy for it,” said Kenyon. “What a wonderful young man. He had a good message; they heard it and they listened and they really responded well. ”
Other Illinois Updates
It’s that time of year at schools—health fair season, and we’ve had a lot of calls in Illinois for dairy nutrition resources! They are referred to our Nutrition Service Center, where staff member and registered dietitian Carol Hicks directs them to the many tools and resources we have available, and helps fulfill milk mustache materials request, always a favorite activity.
Dairy promotions carried out by 53 4-H clubs and 1,564 members were provided $4,000 in Midwest Dairy funding during 2011. As a result, there were dairy promotions in 23 counties reaching 57,581 consumers directly and 118,290 consumers indirectly. Clubs were able to access information and applications for the funding program at the Midwest Dairy website. Information regarding funds for these promotions in 2012 will be posted at midwestdairycheckoff.com. Clubs should contact their county Extension offices by March 15 to receive a promotion kit. Evaluation materials to qualify for the funding are due August 31.
March 1 is the deadline for our 2012 Illinois Division Scholarship applications. We will be giving three $1,000 scholarships from among the applicants we receive from those dairy farm families that fund Midwest Dairy Association. The application and other information is on line at midwestdairycheckoff.com. Please contact me at 309-376-2196 or email@example.com if you have any questions.