MARQUETTE - As a part of the first ever Partners in Recovery "Achieving Healthy Lifestyles Fall Fest," residents of K.I. Sawyer spent their afternoon learning how to live healthier - in mind, body and spirit.
"The day has been exciting - lots of energy, lots of laughter," said Heidi Schneiderhan, behavioral health practitioner for the K.I. Sawyer Family Health Center and organizer of the event. "It's really great to see the positive energy of recovery."
The focus of the event - which took place in and around the health center from 1 to 4 p.m. - was to showcase healthy living options.
Jaya Collins, 7, shows off the apple she picked out during a Healthy Lifestyles Fall Fest in K.I. Sawyer Saturday afternoon. Free, healthy foods were offered to people who stopped by the fest. Jaya was there with her mother, Marie Schaefer. (Journal photo by Jackie Stark)
The fest had a number of vendors offering information on topics that affect physical, mental and spiritual health. Eventgoers could get their blood pressure taken, learn about diabetes, receive information on substance abuse recovery, take some free healthy food samples home and participate in laughter yoga, Zumba and Tai Chi exercises, to name a few.
For the younger participants, Gwinn High School honor students and football team members painted faces, and karaoke was also offered for singers of all ages.
Traditional drum music was played by the Four Thunders throughout the day and a concert was put on by the Lake Superior Christian Church from 2 to 3 p.m.
Roughly 170 people attended.
"Everybody has been energized," Schneiderhan said. "We've had exceptional support from the community."
The event also helped to bolster the work of the Marquette County Community Health Assessment, which is looking to improve community and personal wellness county-wide.
"Several people participating in projects through the health assessment are also working with this group (Partners in Recovery)," said Lisa Johnson, president of Community Handup, an organization working to improve community wellness with a focus on the Sawyer area.
Sawyer resident Marie Schaefer attended the event with her 7-year-old daughter, Jaya Collins. She said events that bring her community together are always a good way to spend the weekend.
"We pretty much hit all (the booths)," Schaefer said as her daughter picked out an apple to eat for a snack. "I think it's good for our community. It gives these kids something to do outside and they can come in and they learn about different organizations. it's really good for the parents too, to be able to come out and be aware of some of the things that are available to us that we didn't know.
"I really enjoy when they have events like these. We try to come all the time."
Jackie Stark can be reached at 906-228-2500, ext. 242. Her email address is firstname.lastname@example.org.