OSU Extensions GROW (Generating Rural Options for Weight-Healthy) Kids and Communities program celebrated the end of a three-year grant-funded project in Molalla last week to increase support for and diminish barriers to healthy eating and physical activity in our community.
The celebration also centered around the first annual rotation of stories in the Molalla StoryWalk, between the six locations at Fox Park, Long Park, Ivor Davies Park, Molalla Elementary School, Molalla River Academy and Mulino Elementary.
The event, Celebrate Health Molalla, drew a crowd of over 300 people to Fox Park with live music from Molalla River Academys marimba, bucket drummers, and rock band. Free snacks and prizes for all were provided by GROW HKC, and the smoothies were made by the GREEN Corps Fresh Start program of the Clackamas County Juvenile Department.
Games, activities, and information about health were provided by many amazing community partners: Molalla Farmers Market with the POP program, Food For Life with great information about healthy food choices, Molalla River Academys Roots of Responsibility garden leadership program, Karen Graves with Upward Trails and her book about the Molalla River Corridor, Michelle Satyna with Molalla Public Library which is about to start another excellent summer reading program for kids, the author of Daisy the Protector Dog Heather Nelson, Roxie Smith with Juice Plus, and the Molalla Area Chamber of Commerce which has taken over the Molalla StoryWalk project. Kristy Stephens, author of We Are What We Eat, painted the faces of dozens children in attendance.
Other OSU programs represented were the Family Food Educators (FFE) and the SNAP-Ed Nutrition Education program. Both programs will continue to serve Clackamas County, including the community of Molalla.
Funding for the GROW HKC program was provided by the National Institute of Food and Agriculture, U.S. Department of Agriculture, under award number 2011-68001-30020. The Molalla StoryWalk program was additionally funded by the Moore Family Center Healthy Communities Outreach.