Community Block Party scheduled for May 30

By Kyle Lovern

May 15, 2014

Staff report

WILLIAMSON – Are you looking for a free family fun night? Join the Mingo County Diabetes Coalition May 30 from 6 to 9 p.m. at the Williamson Farmers Market (on the corner of Second Avenue and Vinson Street) for their 2nd Annual Block Party.

Last year, with help from the Williamson National Guard Armory, Williamson Farmers Market, Energy Express, the Mingo County S.T.O.P Coalition and Amizade Global Service Learning, as well as a few community members, the diabetes coalition was able to host nearly 300 community members from the Tug Valley area at the 1st Annual Block Party last July. The Diabetes Coalition said the goal of the block party is to help encourage healthy eating and active living in the community.

“What better way to show kids that living healthy can be fun than having a party!” said Kayla Whitt, party planner and Health & Wellness Promoter for the coalition.

After the success of last year, the coalition decided that this year’s event needs to accommodate a greater variety of activities for people of all ages. There will be scheduled events, booths and activities throughout the night, such as live music, Zumba, DIY crafts, water balloon tosses, garden workshops, corn hole, and much more.

The coalition has been teaming up with the Williamson Farmers Market to provide healthy local foods to the community and will be obtaining most of their fruits and vegetables from market vendors. Whitt said there will be free healthy food served, although local vendors will be selling fruit drinks and additional items for purchase if desired.

At 6 pm, free food will be served and will stop when it runs out, at 6:15, there will be free Zumba by certified instructor Dawn Mills, and at 7, live music will be led by local band “Bridgekid.”

Whitt mentioned that the goal is to make the party low/no cost to the community and also serve as a center for health education.

“We want to see kids and adults out enjoying the night … ” said Whitt, “But what would be even better is if they are educated about healthy living as well.”

Whitt jokingly said that they were “sneaking in valuable information” by turning a section of the farmers market into an area of education.

“If you visit all the booths in the designated area, you will get a ticket for a chance to win cool door prizes throughout the night,” he said.

The coalition is currently conducting planning meetings throughout the month of May on Tuesdays at 5:30 p.m. at their office located at 29 E. 3rd Ave.

“In order to make this event a success, we are asking the community to help.”

To be a part of, or sponsor, the event, contact Kayla Whitt at 304- 235-3400 or email kwhitt@mingodiabetes.com