Hundreds of kids and families from across Palestine are expected to celebrate YMCA Healthy Kids Day by participating in an activity-filled festival that celebrates the day’s call to action, “Put Play in Your Day.”

The event, which begins at 9 a.m. April 8 at the Palestine YMCA, include various activities hosted by local agencies, such as the Palestine Police Department, Palestine Regional Medical Center, Anderson County Sheriff’s Office, TXU Electric, and Wal-Mart Vision Center.

“The Anderson County Emergency Response team will bring a helicopter, ambulance and fire truck for the kids to look at,” YMCA member services director Amy Kaiser said. “Union Pacific Railroad will be talking to the kids about railroad safety and TXU will talk about electrical safety.”

Kaiser said the YMCA will have several booths at the fair to teach kids pre-exercise techniques, moving to music and other fun fitness-related activities.

“This day is designed to celebrate healthy living, encourage kids and families to get excited about physical fun and activity, and most importantly, just play,” Kaiser said. “Increasing physical activity is one way to get healthier, and doing it as a family is a great way to reconnect with one another.”

After the fair ends at 11:30 a.m. the children who have their cards fully stamped are qualified to participate in the Y’s annual Easter Eggstravaganza Egg Hunt, which begins at noon.

“We will be stashing 3,000 candy-filled eggs,” Kaiser said. “Some of those eggs will have a door prize ticket to be redeemed for a variety of fun toys.”

The Easter Bunny also will be visiting from 10:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. to have his picture taken with the children at a cost of $5 per picture.

“It will be a fun day for the kids to learn about health and safety issues effecting them and their families,” Kaiser said. “It is a valuable resource for the parents and a great event for families.”

YMCA Healthy Kids Day is part of YMCA Activate America, a national long-term initiative focused on developing and implementing community-based solutions to help all Americans improve their health and wellness.

YMCA Healthy Kids Day is sponsored locally by Palestine Regional Medical Center, Whataburger, Palestine Herald-Press, KYYK/ESPN 1450, Wal-Mart and Walgreens.

National sponsors include the American Diabetes Association, American Heart Association, American Public Health Association, American Cancer Society, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the National Association of Chronic Disease Directors.

This year, more than 1,300 YMCAs will be participating in YMCA Healthy Kids Day nationwide.

Volunteers are needed to help hide eggs and 25 tables are needed for use at the fair. To help or for more information about Healthy Kids Day, call the YMCA at 903-729-3139.

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