My Saturday RANT
This morning, Jess and I took Jaxon to Kids Discover Day held at our local community college. I didn’t know much about the event and when I called to get more information, the lady I spoke with didn’t know much more than I did. When I asked what age groups it was for she said, “Well, I’m not sure-young.” I asked, “Young as in 2-3 year olds or young as in elementary school. She had no idea. We decided to take him anyway and figured if it wasn’t geared toward his age, we’d leave. Entering the building each child was given a wrist band with the parent’s cell phone number written on it in case he got lost. (I’d never thought of that, but good idea!) Then he was given a little plastic bucket that had a couple flyers in it and a $1 coupon for “the store” inside the gym. We got there about 15 minutes after it started and the place was packed with children of all ages. Our first stop was a table where you could decorate your own cookie with sprinkles. Of course Jaxon enjoyed that and took a couple bites to get us started. After that, he spotted several Fun Jumps and he bounced around in those for quite a while. We were going to get a balloon animal made for him but the line to that booth was ridiculously long and Jess and I just didn’t think a balloon was worth it. J There were quite a few booths with most of them giving a trinket of some sort to the kids – slinky, plastic egg with candy in it, sheriff’s badge, popcorn, etc. The booths didn’t have much literature about their organization, just stuff for the kids. You just walked up to their table and took whatever they were offering and left. I didn’t really understand it. After an hour of bouncing around Jaxon was thirsty so we headed to the “store” to use our $1 coupon and get something to drink. The “store” consisted of tables of POP, plastic pumpkins filled with CANDY, more tables of CANDIES, and CHIPS. Of course Jaxon wanted pop and at that point we decided we’d been there long enough, so we got him chips and gave him his juice once we got to the car. Even after we left, I’m still not sure of the ‘purpose’ of the event. One thing is for certain, it wasn’t about promoting good health and appropriate foods for children!! Is that the only way to get people to come to this event-by bombarding the kids with CRAP from the minute they walk in the door? So what if a child has to actually attend an event where there is no snack and heaven forbid, no pop? Will we be hearing parents say, “Oh my poor sweet baby, we live almost five minutes from here. Can you make it home without those 9 tsp of sugar poured directly into your bloodstream? Will you be ok, will you?” Get a GRIP people!
Whatever the purpose of this Kids Discovery Day was, the kids will remember one thing only. It was just ANOTHER place to get more candy and pop. And we wonder why our kids have childhood diabetes and obesity is rampant among children? We wonder why children can’t run one time around the gym in PE class without breaking into tears because they can’t breathe! WAKE UP!