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updated: 3/21/2011 5:49 PM

YMCA's Healthy Kids Day aims to get families moving through play

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Dave Burisek

On Saturday, April 16, the Campanelli YMCA is encouraging all kids and parents in Schaumburg and surrounding communities to come to the Y for a play date and commit to being active every day. It's all part of the YMCA's Healthy Kids Day -- the nation's largest health day for families. The free event will take place at the Campanelli YMCA from 9:30 a.m. to noon and feature activities such as Hot Shot basketball, golf, activities from Gameworks, and much more.

As a leading nonprofit strengthening community through healthy living, the Y holds Healthy Kids Day to teach healthy habits to kids and inspire a lifetime love of physical activity. At a time when one in three children in the United States are overweight or obese (according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention), developing healthier habits that include increased physical activity is more important than ever.

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"At the Campanelli Y, we know that parents struggle to find the time to incorporate more active play and healthier habits into their kids' daily routine," says Dave Burisek, associate executive director, Campanelli Y. "Doing so doesn't have to require extra money or resources. It's as simple as making a play date with your kids, with two key requirements -- be active and have fun!"

As part of Healthy Kids Day, the Y encourages families to make play dates everyday as a simple way to become healthier, more active and connected. The Campanelli Y recommends five simple activities families can do to play together:

1. Schedule a Game Night: Play games with the kids that incorporate physical activity, such as Charades.

2. Dance, Dance: Turn on your favorite party music and dance! Make this activity more fun with a dance contest.

3. Go Riding: Find a new bike path or park for a fun afternoon outdoors; grab your helmets and go rollerblading or bike riding.

4. Channel Your Inner Youth: Remember playing hopscotch, jump rope, Simon Says or freeze tag as a kid? Teach your favorite childhood game to your kid(s) and play them together.

5. Play Outside: Visit your neighborhood park or camp out in your backyard for some outdoor fun. Get everyone moving with fun sports like soccer, basketball or baseball.

Healthy Kids Day will be celebrated at nearly 1,600 Ys across the country, with more than 700,000 families expected to attend this year.

Healthy Kids Day is supported by Alexian Brothers Hospital Network and other community partners. In addition, the Campanelli Y is proud to offer various health screenings and program demonstrations on this day.

Nationally, Healthy Kids Day is supported by the Dodge brand, PepsiCo and Sam's Club.

For more information, contact Campanelli YMCA at (847) 891-9622 or visit www.campanelliymca.org.

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