Back To School Festival Teaches Healthy Living - | Nashville News, Weather & Sports

Back To School Festival Teaches Healthy Living

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by Emily Luxen

NASHVILLE, Tenn. - The school year may have already officially started for students in Metro Nashville Public Schools, but organizers of a back to school festival want to make sure students are getting off to a strong start.

The Love's Healthy Start Festival at Hadley Park Saturday was organized by State Rep. Harold Love, Jr. and featured information from several local organizations including the Children's Defense Fund, The Urban League of Middle Tennessee, and others.  The free event attracted a big crowd.

"I feel like the energy is good," said Shakya Cherry-Donaldson with the Children's Defense Fund. "The weather won't keep us down.  Young people are really excited about the wonderful school year."

The event featured free backpacks filled with school supplies, food and drinks and live entertainment.  There was also an emphasis on teaching families about health and wellness.  Representatives from the TSU department of Nursing and Dental Hygiene conducted health and dental screenings for students.  Parents were able to attend cooking demonstrations and learn about how to prepare healthy foods.

"I think families are excited about what's here today," said Patricia Stokes, the President and CEO of the Urban League of Middle Tennessee. "They get some good healthy food, some great music and an opportunity for fellowship with the larger community."

Parents and students left the event energized about the first full week of school.

"This is the first time we've come to this event," said parent Iricka Williams. "It's very informative.  My girls are ready for school, yeah, they are ready."

The event is also part of the city-wide Children's Sabbath Weekend which is a three day event centered around uniting religious groups from around the city in an effort to improve the lives of children.

School for Metro Nashville Public School students officially started Aug. 1.


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