Party in the Park Saturday

Rotary event set for Memorial Park
Aug. 22, 2013 @ 09:39 AM

A long-awaited Party in the Park, part of Thomasville Rotary Club's "Children at Play" initiative, is set to be held from 6 to 8 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 24, at Memorial Park at 20 Stadium Drive.

The event was originally scheduled for May 7, but was postponed and rescheduled twice because of inclement weather. Dr. Karl Milliren, Rotary Club president, said last year's park openings created an awareness for a healthy lifestyle for many Chair City residents.

"Basically, our initiative is to get people out and active," said Milliren. "We're revisiting the idea of Party in the Park to institute the second, educational, phase to help people make better choices with nutrition and activity."

Children and adults of all ages are invited to participate in a 40-yard dash, obstacle course hula hoop and free throw shooting contests. Winners of each age category will get a T-shirt, as a sort of badge of honor. Light snacks will be served.

Information and applications for a $1,000 incentive program will be available to parents and children at the party. "Families Taking Charge" is the name of the program, and will be utilized as a way to combat unhealthy living.

"We've made a couple changes. We will be taking applications and selecting select six families to participate in a program throughout the school year for prevention of childhood obesity," said Mary Jane Akerman, a member of the Thomasville Rotary Club and wellness coordinator for Communities In Schools. "Then we will have pre- and post-program screenings to see if we've helped to make a difference in the families we engage."

Following the party, Thomasville Parks and Recreation will show a free family movie, “Hotel Transylvania,” starting at 8:30 p.m. Representatives from Novant Health Thomasville Medical Center will be on hand, along with representatives from the Davidson County Health Department and Davidson County Cooperative Extension to show parents how to equip their children for a healthier lifestyle.

"The whole evening is free, so we just need people to come out," said Akerman.

Children at Play was among the three programs which helped Thomasville gain All-America City status.

Staff Writer Daniel Kennedy can be reached at 888-3575, or kennedy@tvilletimes.com.