Archive for Thursday, March 10, 2005

Annual Wellness Festival aims for health

March 10, 2005

This year's Fourth Annual Community Wellness Festival is shaping to be bigger and better than the previous three years, but time is running out to pre-register for the lab tests.

The festival which takes place from 9 a.m. to noon on April 2 in the Collins Center, has been drawing large crowds the previous three years.

"It's a lot of work, but I think it pays off when we see people coming to it," Ruth Sarna, Baker University Director of Student Services, said. "It's been growing each year with the number of exhibitors and booths."

The deadline for the lab tests is March 21. There will be a prostate test as well as other blood tests that cost money. The cost will be less for people who pre-register. Forms are included in the flyers in the paper, but additional forms are available at local businesses and the Baker student union.

Some of the free health screenings include blood pressure, posture check, body fat, bone density, hearing, lung volume, skin cancer education and vision.

Sarna said people should attend the health fair for many reasons.

"It's an excellent opportunity for them to have something available locally," Sarna. "We want to make them aware of the opportunities of the free screenings. We also want them to be aware of the resources available in the community."

There will be drawings for prizes, which include an adult and a child's bicycle. Free bicycle helmets for children and free t-shirts to the first 150 attendees will be given out.

John Gutschenritter helps with the advertising side of the festival, and said he enjoys taking part in it and helping people with their health.

"I feel like its a very good service to the community, because its gets people to be aware of their health," Gutschenritter said. "It gets children of all ages involved and gets them acquainted with things they normally wouldn't come in contact with. It's a good avenue for getting people involved with their health."

Ivey Hey, who also helps Sarna with the festival, said she also enjoys helping others prevent health problems.

"I like it a lot, because it's really important people do this to stay on top of their health," Hey said. "We try to help people prevent things before they happen."

Last year Lisa Crettol decided to get her hearing checked out at one of the free screenings. After that day, Crettol saw a specialist, and was told she had Otosclerosis, the calcification of a small bone of her ear.

"It's rewarding when we find someone that is helped through it. It's also some fun in the morning. It's great to see the families come and learn through the exhibits."

This year's festival is being funded by a Douglas County Community Foundation Grant and Baldwin City businesses and exhibitors.

Commenting has been disabled for this item.