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SES 'Powers Up' with Lakeview Health

Somerset Elementary School students dance to music played by Radio Disney representatives after the PowerUp School Challenge assembly Friday, Feb. 22. The PowerUp School Challenge is part of a Lakeview Health initiative designed to promote eating healthily and getting exercise among elementary school kids. Pictured (from left) are Riley Rainer, Addi Monty, Jonah Gingras and Blake Komro-Jorgenson.

Students jumped up and down, waved their arms and danced to "Call Me Maybe" (Carly Rae Jepsen), "Baby" (Justin Bieber) and other popular songs during a not-so-typical school assembly at Somerset Elementary School Friday, Feb. 22.

The PowerUp School Challenge kickoff assembly was led by Radio Disney employees, who used popular songs to get the kids up and moving throughout the approximately 45-minute assembly.

"It went incredibly," said SES Principal Darren Kern, "The kids did a great job. Radio Disney did a great job. Lakeview Health does a great job. It was just an overall, really good event."

The PowerUp School Challenge is part of a Lakeview Health initiative geared toward helping kids eat healthily and stay physically active.

Through the four-week-long school challenge, teachers will guide their students to track how many fruits and vegetables they eat each week, as well as how much physical exercise they get.

As Radio Disney employees explained to the students at the assembly, one of the program's goals is for kids to fill half of their plate with fruits and vegetables at every meal. Another of the goals is for kids to get at least an hour of physical exercise every day.

"It accomplishes both things," Kern said. "Teaches them (kids) how to be healthy in the food choices they make and it gets them up and active, which is something important for them."

The overall goal of PowerUp, said PowerUp Director Marna Canterbury in a telephone interview, is to help children become more healthy.

"Statistics show that if we don't take action, children today won't have good health... and they won't live lives as long," Canterbury said. "That is why Lakeview is so committed to this initiative, not just the school challenge, but the PowerUp initiative overall."

Kern said Radio Disney did a good job of getting the children excited about fruits, vegetables, exercise and the PowerUp School Challenge.

"As they were leaving, they were asking me lots of questions about it, so I know that they're very excited too," Kern said.

Somerset Elementary School is one of many schools in the Stillwater, Minn. and Somerset area to take part in the PowerUp School Challenge.

"It would be great if more schools were doing this," Kern said. "I think we'll definitely be doing it again in the future."

Gretta Stark

Gretta Stark has been a reporter for the River Falls Journal since July of 2013. She previously worked as a reporter for the New Richmond News from June 2012 to July 2013. She holds a BA in Print and Electronic Media from Wartburg College.

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