Originally published May 20, 2013
From the first pitch to the last inning, there was a huge crowd at the Gwinnett Braves' 2013 Education Day. Although the Gwinnett Braves lost to the Pawtucket Red Sox with a final score of 14 to 9, it was a perfect game day for the Georgia SHAPE exhibit.
The exhibit, part of Georgia SHAPE, Gov. Nathan Deal's statewide initiative to combat childhood obesity, offers several physical activities, along with health and fitness education for children.
"I thought that Georgia SHAPE should have a presence for this event because in addition to language arts, mathematics, science and social studies, kids need education about health and physical activity," said Sandra Roberts, marketing strategist and program analyst for the Georgia Department of Public Health (DPH). Georgia SHAPE was one of several exhibitors who spent half a day at Coolray Field sharing information with students about physical activity, injury prevention, community service and other topics. Roberts had her hands full with boys and girls of all ages who were anxious to engage in fun and competition.
Roberts said the students "had a wonderful time interacting with the exhibit, which includes a GestureTek, a device that projects games on the floor and senses movements so kids can play against each other or with each other."
The exhibit also includes a spin-the-wheel game that asks health and physical activity-related questions and a bean bag toss.
Students competed to collect prizes, including Georgia SHAPE water bottles, jump ropes and magnets.
Ed Jones, health educator for the Gwinnett, Newton and Rockdale County Health Departments, helped Roberts at the event.
"The kids had a lot of fun," said Jones. "The SHAPE exhibit called the attention to the kids and parents to the resources on the Georgia SHAPE website at www.georgiashape.org. We were interactive on a participatory level and I think there are opportunities to add immediate resources for the community through a QR code on the display."
Ryan Moore, manager of ticket sales for the Gwinnett Braves Baseball Club, said the day was a success.
"We were thrilled with the 2013 Gwinnett Braves Belk Education Day at Coolray Field," said Moore. "We had a record turnout of over 7,000 students and everyone seemed to have a great time. The day was only made better with all the interactive activities for the students provided by groups like the Georgia Department of Public Health."
The Georgia SHAPE exhibit will be on the road throughout the state to promote healthy living to Georgia's kids. For more information about the exhibit, contact Sandra Roberts at firstname.lastname@example.org