On Saturday, April 27, the West Seattle YMCA is holding a free community event to inspire
more kids to keep their minds and bodies active at the annual YMCA’s Healthy Kids Day ® , the
Y’s national initiative to improve health and well-being for kids and families Sponsored by the
Howard Johnson ® by Wyndham hotel brand, Healthy Kids Day is an opportunity to ignite
children’s imaginations so that they can imagine what they’ll accomplish this summer. The
day-long event features activities such as hands-only CPR lessons, free helmets and helmet
fittings, games, healthy cooking demonstrations, arts and crafts to motivate and teach families
how to develop and maintain healthy routines at home throughout the summer months.
Healthy Kids Day, celebrated at over 1,500 Ys across the country by over one million
participants, works to get more kids moving and learning, creating habits that they continue all
summer long. When kids are out of school, they can face hurdles that prevent them from
reaching their full potential. Research shows that without access to out-of-school learning
activities, kids fall behind academically. Kids also gain weight twice as fast during summer than
the school year. As spring turns to summer, Healthy Kids Day is a powerful reminder not to let
children idle away their summer days. Instead, the Y wants families to focus on helping children
imagine what they can accomplish over the summer.
“When a child is healthy, happy, and supported they can make great things happen,” says
Shalimar Gonzales, Senior Executive Director, West Seattle and Fauntleroy YMCA. “We believe
in the potential of all children, and we strive to help kids find that potential within themselves.
A child’s development is never on vacation and Healthy Kids Day is a great opportunity to
educate families and motivate kids to stay active in spirit, mind and body throughout the
summer,” said Shalimar Gonzales, Senior Executive Director, West Seattle and Fauntleroy
“All of us at Howard Johnson are incredibly proud to be supporting Healthy Kids Day, inspiring
families to get active, spend quality time together and create smiles that last a lifetime,” said
Clem Bence, Howard Johnson brand leader and vice president of operations. “Giving back to
the communities where our hotels operate is fundamental to our values as a brand and we couldn’t be more excited to be partnering with local Ys across the country on such a meaningful initiative.”
Howard Johnson has been a proud national partner of the Y for the past two years and three out of every four Howard Johnson hotels are located within just 10 miles of a local Y. In addition to supporting Healthy Kids Day, the brand offers all Y members up to 20% off stays at participating hotels across the country, with 10% of every booking benefiting the Y nationally.
Keeping Kids Healthy All Summer Long
In celebration of YMCA’s Healthy Kids Day, the Y offers the following tips to help families
develop healthy habits this summer that can have a lifetime effect:
High Five the Fruits and Veggies – Make sure kids get at least five servings of fruits
and veggies each day, the minimum number nutritionists recommend for healthy
childhood development. And to keep kids’ taste buds evolving, have everyone in the
family try at least one bite of a new fruit or vegetable at least once a month.
Read Together – The summer is a great time to enjoy books with summer program
participants—and 30 minutes a day goes a long way! Take trips to the local library or
create a family reading challenge to see who can log the most minutes of reading.
Encourage youth to create their own stories as well.
Get Moving! – Activities that require movement also help kids flex their mental muscle.
Use materials in unique ways: ask youth to build models, manipulate tools or develop
their own theatrical scenes.
Play Together – Play may be the best way to prevent childhood obesity. By putting
more play into your family’s day, you will soon find yourself getting the activity that will
have your family feeling energized and strong.
Make sleep a priority – Doctors recommend 10-12 hours of sleep a day for children
ages 5-12 and 7-8 hours per night for adults. Sleep plays a critical role in maintaining
our healthy immune system, metabolism, mood, memory, and learning.
West Seattle’s Healthy Kids Day takes place at the West Seattle YMCA in the Fauntleroy Triangle Area (3622 SW Snoqualmie St) from 10 am-1 pm and features fun, active play and educational activities, such as hands-only CPR lessons, water safety activities, healthy snack making, and more! Plus we’ll be waiving the joining fee!
For more information, visit https://www.seattleymca.org/healthykidsday
West Seattle, Washington