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Drop That Video Game and Head Outside

Give your kids an opportunity to explore outdoor adventures and activities at the Monterey Bay Youth Outdoor Day.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again—today’s kids spends way too much time watching television, playing video games and sitting in front of the computer, and, sadly, not enough time exercising or playing outdoors.

Be a positive role model and show your child that there is a magnificent world of outdoor adventure and activities to explore at the  . This event is set to showcase wonderful and exciting outdoor activities that are healthy for the active body and the young soul. Through exhibits, presentations and hands-on activities, the event is designed to engage, educate and entertain while helping children learn what they can do to lead an active and fit lifestyle.

“I have a daughter who is 12 and a son who is 9, and all they want to do is stay indoors and spend time playing computer games and video games,” said Maria Jimenez, longtime Watsonville resident. “I try to get them outside to play, but it’s like pulling teeth.”

Jimenez is excited about the prospect of exposing her children to new activities and is looking forward to the event.

“I’m worried about my kids gaining weight as they go through puberty, and I also want them to learn healthy habits that will last them a lifetime,” she said passionately.

One obvious beneficial impact of active involvement in the outdoors is physical fitness, which directly impacts a child’s risk of obesity and health issues in later life. Less obvious, but nevertheless very real, is the physiological and psychological impact on a child’s well being. Studies show that outdoor recreational activities have a positive impact on feelings of well-being, confidence and body image—all of which significantly reduce a child’s chance of becoming overweight.

As you probably already know, overweight children are at greater risk for many serious health and psychological problems, such as asthma, high-blood pressure, diabetes, behavior problems and trouble sleeping. For most, being overweight is the result of unhealthy eating patterns, such as too many calories and not enough physical activity. Since these habits are established in early childhood, efforts to prevent obesity should begin early.

With this in mind, I encourage you to take your child to the Monterey Bay Youth Outdoor Day and let him or her explore a world of fun, fitness and health.

From horse and dog shows to BMX and skateboarding shows, your child is sure to find some enjoyment at this fun event.

Here’s a list of events:

  • Fishing
  • Rock climbing wall
  • Skateboarding clinic
  • Kayaking and sailing exhibit
  • Wildlife photography exhibit
  • Archery and target range
  • Biking and BMX shows
  • Hiking and backpacking exhibit
  • Arena shows
  • Surfing exhibit
  • Hunter safety exhibit

Local sponsors and experts have come together to put on both fun and educational exhibits, demonstrations, instruction and hands-on opportunities for your child to experience their favorite outdoor hobby or perhaps try a new one.

There will also be several chances to win fantastic outdoor excursions as well as many other great prizes.

The event will take place on Saturday at the Santa Cruz County Fairgrounds from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., and admission and parking are free.

For more information go to myobd.org.

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