â??I’m SOW Healthyâ?
You come home, hot and thirsty, and you are tempted to grab a calorie-ridden cold drink from the frig. No longer, if your child attended â??Sow Healthyâ? at the Culpeper Downtown Farmerâ??s Market this past Saturday. More than 50 young people attended the free cooking class, coordinated by Georgette Mosley, Virginia Family Nutrition Program through the Virginia Cooperative Extension. Using healthy and local ingredients, the boys and girls made Sparkling Berry Lemonade, a refreshing and guilt-free drink that would quench the thirst of all ages. Not only were the children learning a new recipe, they had fun squeezing lemons and smashing the juicy berries.
If this sounds yummy, children will have other opportunities to try their culinary skills on August 23 and September 27 (the fourth Saturday of those two months). There are three choices of times, beginning at 9 a.m. There are also morning classes at 10 and 11. Each class lasts for 30 minutes. Mosley said the purpose of the classes is to teach children and their families to make healthier food choices with local food resources.
Debuting in May, classes have featured such delightful snacks as seasonal vegetables with an herb dip and a parfait with fresh local berries, vanilla yogurt, and granola. In August, children can learn how to create a rainbow pasta salad, with fresh vegetables and in September, zucchini fritters and yogurt dip are on the menu.
Mosley said that it is important not only to have healthy snacks, but to keep the portions at a low cost for families. The food cost in this program averaged 50 cents per child, making the recipes healthy, guilt-free, and inexpensive. During one of the classes, a mother said to her child, â??We will have to do this at home!â?
â??Sow Healthyâ? is funded by several community groups. In addition to the Virginia Extension providing Mosleyâ??s efforts and her supplies, Culpeper Renaissance, Inc.; Culpeper Human Services; and the Culpeper Downtown Farmers Market have made contributions to the program. Others pitch in, as well. An example is In Total Health, which provided participants individual bags of soil and packets of seeds so that children could experience the growing of their own food.
During the school year, Mosley visits elementary schools and conducts hands-on nutrition lessons for every child attending the school.
For more information on the Virginia Family Nutrition Program, visit Mosleyâ??s Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/GeorgetteMosleyVaFamilyNutritionProgram.
If You Go
When: Saturday, Aug. 23
Saturday, Sept. 27
Time: Three sessions: 9, 10 and 11 a.m.
Where: Culpeper Farmers Market located near the Depot
August 23: Rainbow Pasta Salad. This pasta salad is bursting with bright colors and bold flavorful veggies. This weekâ??s activities sponsored by: C&T Produce.
September 27: Zucchini Fritters with Herb Yogurt Dip. Children will make zucchini fritters and dunk them in delicious, fresh herb yogurt dip. This weekâ??s activities sponsored by: Whole Heart Farms.