The Tampa Metropolitan Area YMCA will celebrate YMCA’s Healthy Kids Day on April 27 with a free community event to encourage children and families to get moving and learning.
The event is from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Curtis Hixon Waterfront Park, 600 N. Ashley Drive in downtown Tampa. It includes bounce houses, fitness demonstrations, arts and crafts, water safety tips, healthy snacks and sports giveaways.
Local mascots will compete in a dance off. Those entered include the Tampa Bay Rays’ Raymond, Tampa Bay Lightning’s Thunderbug, Tampa Yankees’ Blue, Clearwater Threshers’ Phinley, Plato the Publixaurus, Chuck E. Cheese, Sparky the Fire Dog, and Y Guy and Y Gal.
The day is designed to improve families’ health and well-being and is part of similar celebrations at 1,900 YMCAs throughout the nation.
Surveys show U.S. children do not get the daily recommended hours of physical activity and reading, and daily amounts of healthy foods. According to the YMCA’s Family Health Snapshot – a survey of parents that gauges their children’s activity levels during the school year – only 19 percent of children get 60 minutes of physical activity, only 17 percent read books for fun, and only 12 percent eat at least eight fruits and vegetables daily.