NMC Commentary

Is Governor Scott Coming to Healthy Hearts?

Yes!  We are excited that Governor Scott will be attending Healthy Hearts on the Move February 10th 9 – 12 noon– our community’s wonderful free health and wellness fair sponsored by NMC and Northwestern Counseling & Support Services (NCSS).  In addition to the amazing assortment of free health screenings, interactive educational exhibits, kids’ activities, healthy snacks, free massage, and great door prizes, this year’s Healthy Hearts event will feature part of the RiseVT Active Play campaign kick off!  We are so pleased that the Governor will be part of this fantastic wellness event and join in helping launch Active Play here in Franklin and Grand Isle counties!

The Governor will be arriving at approximately 10am that morning, about an hour into Healthy Hearts. We anticipate that he will receive a “playscription” from Dr. Elisabeth Fontaine, the Medical Director of RiseVT and NMC’s Lifestyle Medicine Department.  Active play is an excellent way to build joy and fun physical activity into your life and connect with friends and family, so a playscription is a great motivator and permission slip to “play”.    From there, we will engage the Governor in some of the RiseVT Active Play fun at Healthy Hearts. Some of you got a sneak preview at this with the successful Family Pop Up event in Swanton at the end of January where many local families got to enjoy dancing, hula hooping, boot scooting, and more. There was so much laughter and so much fun at the Family Pop Up – I’m looking forward to sharing that with so many more people, including the Governor, at Healthy Hearts!  The Governor will also have the opportunity to see the great work which NCSS does with kids activities and I expect he will not be able to resist a bit of parachute play in the big gym!  To culminate his visit, we anticipate the Governor will speak to the importance of embracing healthy lifestyles and sign a RiseVT Active Play proclamation to help us launch our campaign to build more play into our lives here in northwestern Vermont.  We appreciate the Governor taking the time to help amplify the Active Play focus of RiseVT and the work of all the partners who are helping put on Healthy Hearts, so I hope you will make a special point of joining us at Healthy Hearts!

There are so many great things in store for Healthy Hearts attendees.  This year’s event runs from 9am to Noon on Saturday, February 10 at St. Albans City School.  Free health screenings include cholesterol, blood sugar, blood pressure, and a colo-rectal cancer screening.  New activities include a Hollywood Squares game and a Flavorland game!  Feel the Fruit offers a chance to see how good your senses are when you cannot see what is at hand.  The Bouncy House will be back as a big draw for youngsters – and we are adding additional face painters due to the popularity last year.  Northwestern Orthopaedics & Rehabilitation will be addressing technology ergonomics to help us all avoid ‘tech neck’ and other conditions and injuries associated with the growing use of technology in our lives.  The list of exhibitors continues to grow – and we are so pleased to welcome Community Action and the Vermont Department of Health to the exhibitors this year!  Plus, free massage will be back again and you will want to sign up for a slot as those are very popular!

I remember the first year of Healthy Hearts, when it was only a handful of exhibits and activities.  To see our community embrace this event and have it grow through our community partners is such a tribute to how important better health is to all of us. It is now an amazing event and having the Governor with us to help launch the RiseVT active play campaign will be a great highlight this year.  Please mark your calendar for 9am to Noon on Saturday, February 10th and join us at Healthy Hearts at St. Albans City School.  Pick up your ‘playscription’ and enjoy a great morning of healthy educational fun and active play! I will be there playing right along with you!

— Jill Berry Bowen, NMC’s Chief Executive Officer