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UMPI students host 11th Fit and Fun Day

Local kids will unknowingly be getting exercise while taking part in fun activities during the 11th semi-annual Fit and Fun Day, to be held from 9:30 a.m. to 12 p.m. on Saturday, April 10 in Gentile Hall and sponsored by the University of Maine at Presque Isle’s Physical Education Majors Club.

For the past several years, the Club has organized the free play day for area children in grades 1 through 5 to teach them about health and fitness in a fun environment. Activities will include rhythm activities, parachute games, juggling, and ball handling games, as well as improving motor skill techniques through activities such as throwing with rubber chickens, frogs, and turtles.

The multipurpose court in Gentile Hall will be set up for the various activities. Children will spend about 20 to 30 minutes at one of four stations before moving on to another activity. UMPI physical education and athletic training students will facilitate the activities and help children throughout the day.

This year, the climbing wall and the swimming pool will be open to Fit and Fun Day participants. Parents who would like to be active while keeping an eye on their kids will have the opportunity to take part in a walking club that will be making loops around the elevated track that overlooks the gym where children will be playing.

Each child that participates in the day’s activities will receive a free prize from the Physical Education Majors Club.

Dr. Chris Standefer, Professor of Physical Education, said the event provides wonderful benefits both to college and elementary students.

“The biggest benefit is that kids can do fun activities and realize that fitness isn’t just about exercise. It’s also about playing and just being a kid,” she said. “And our university students get the opportunity to work with school-age children. Anytime I can get my students working with kids, it makes their teaching skills stronger.”

If the weather is nice, organizers may include some outdoor activities during the event. Participants should plan to bring a jacket. Participants also should bring their own snacks for this event. Water will be provided. Coffee and tea will be provided by Aramark Food Service for parents. For more information, call Dr. Chris Standefer at 768-9457.