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East Huntingdon facility to host 13th annual 'Healthy Kids Day'

| Wednesday, April 3, 2013, 9:01 p.m.

The Regional Family YMCA of Laurel Highlands will host its 13th annual Healthy Kids Day to promote health and wellness in children April 12, according to Bea Jarbeck Burk, the facility's director of fitness.

The event from 9:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. will be geared toward preschool children, who must be accompanied by an adult. “It is important to provide information regarding health, wellness, environment, safety and fitness to area children and their parents,” Jarbeck-Burk said.

The event incorporates information about healthy lifestyles, safety and fun activities for area children.

Several booths, such as St. Vincent College Prevention Projects and Child Care Information Systems, will provide information for parents.

Rachael Olbeter of Pampered Chef will discuss healthy snacks for children.

The United Way of Westmoreland County will have brochures on early childhood learning.

Mt. Pleasant Borough Police Chief Steve Ober will also be on hand to educate children and their parents on bicycle safety, including information on signaling, obeying stop signs and proper use of helmets.

“It's a good resource to educate our children on safe practices for every day life,” Ober said.

Rebecca Singer of Singer Chiropractic will provide spinal screenings at no cost for interested participants. The P.T. Group will provide information on physical therapy services available for children.

“The YMCA does this every year to promote health and wellness. If we teach young families early, hopefully they will learn and maintain good habits,” said Steve Simon, executive director of the Regional Family YMCA.

Interactive play for children will include the Pittsburgh Passion women's football obstacle course, an inflatable slide and the PA Game Commission, which will offer wildlife identification and education.

Most of the activities will be held indoors with the exception of exploring a Mt. Pleasant Borough fire truck and meeting Mt. Pleasant policeman George Grippo and his K-9 partner, Gerro.

Frock Childcare rents a bus each year to take children to the event as a scheduled field trip.

Each child will take home a bag of information and samples to share with their parents, according to Cindy Murdock, assistant director of Frock Childcare.

“The kids really enjoy it. It gives us a sense of community and is very informative,” Murdock said.

Healthy Kids Day is offered at no expense to the presenters or participants.

Kelly Vernon is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 724-547-5722 or