14th Annual Waimea Healthy Keikifest on Saturday promises family fun and education

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<p>Keiki get their “health passport” stamped at last year’s Keiki Fest. </p><p>NHN file photo</p>
<p>Schools, businesses and community groups will have booths with education projects in fitness, mind, the environment, safety, and nutrition. (NHN file photo)</p>

This Saturday, keiki and their families from all over the area will visit Parker Ranch Center in Waimea for the 14th Annual Waimea Healthy Keikifest, 9 a.m.-2 p.m., sponsored by Tutu’s House.

“Last year, we had 300 to 320 kids,” said Sharnell Kalahiki, the event’s coordinator. “This year, we are expecting more.”

The theme for the family-friendly event for keiki 3-12 years old is “Honoring our Bodies, Honoring Ourselves.”

According to Kalahiki, the educational day will be filled with more than 35 booths offering hands-on activities in one of six categories: fitness, health, mind, nutrition, safety and environment.

“The kids are going to love it,” she said. “It only happens once a year, and it will be an unforgettable memory.”

Some of the sponsors include: Lex Brodie, who will build a tire course to teach bike safety; The Center for the Study of Active Volcanoes, who will teach about natural hazards relating to our volcanoes and demonstrate a seismograph; Honey Passion, who will bring an observation hive that keiki can look at and ask questions with wax and propolis that can be handled; AYSO Soccer, who will provide a soccer skill activity, and CrossFit AllStar, who will offer participants an opportunity to test their skills in cardio-respiratory endurance, power, strength, stamina, speed, agility, flexibility, balance, accuracy, and coordination.

Healthways II will have a “Name That Veggie” game at their booth, and will also be giving away free juice boxes. Hawaii Electric Light Co. will provide educational materials and a hands-on activity that will teach the kids about renewable, clean energy and how it lessens our impact on the environment. There will also be a fire truck and ambulance for keiki to explore.

Each student is given a “health card” that they take to each booth and get stamped after they participate in the activity. Once their card is complete, participants earn tickets to get their faces painted; they can earn balloons, or enjoy a chance to bounce in the bouncer.

“This year, the kids are lucky because they will receive tote bags with the Keiki fest logos,” Kalahiki said.

She said the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers will also give away free tote bags, and other booths will be giving away other gifts to participants.

“To me, the purpose of the event is to bring the parents and children together to celebrate a day and to learn about all of the information offered. And it is free,” Kalahiki said.

For more information, contact Tutu’s House at 885-6777, or email sharnell@tutushouse.org.