Food Day, the nationwide grassroots mobilization for healthier diets and improved food policies, is gaining momentum as organizers plan thousands of events big and small on October 24, 2012. “One of the best things you can do for your health is to cook and enjoy family meals made with fresh, colorful seasonal ingredients,” said chef and author Ellie Krieger, host of Healthy Appetite on the Food Network and a member of the Food Day advisory board. “Food Day is a chance to celebrate the power good food has to nourish us and bring us together.”

Genesee County will celebrate Food Day with a Healthy Halloween presented by the SPROUT (Steering Prevention Reducing Obesity Utilizing Teamwork) Coalition at the Flint Farmers’ Market on Saturday, October 27, 2012, from 10 am to 12 noon. There will be fourteen trick- or- treat stations throughout the market. The SPROUT Coalition partners will be paired with market vendors, assuring that the children and their families will see the wide variety of produce available at the Flint Farmers’ Market.

The SPROUT Coalition, Genesee County's childhood obesity prevention coalition, hopes the experience will encourage children and their families to include more fruits and vegetables in their diets. In addition, Hula-Hoop and jump rope contents will offer the children the opportunity to be physically active and win prizes. Safe and Active Genesee for Everyone will also be present with Tale on the Trail. Families can enjoy a children’s story while they stroll the Flint River Trail across from the Flint Farmers’ Market. Educational materials will be available to both children and parents in a tent located on the lawn. At the conclusion of the trick-or-treat, children will be treated to a healthy snack. The activities planned promote healthy nutrition and active lifestyles both strategies to prevent childhood obesity.

The Community Foundation of Greater Flint generously provided sponsorship for the Healthy Halloween event. Other organizations providing support include the Genesee County Health Department, Mott Children’s Health Center, Hurley Medical Center, Flint Community Schools, Genesee Intermediate School District, Genesee County Community Action Resource Department, Commit To Fit, Hamilton Community Health Network, HealthPlus of Michigan, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, Michigan State University Extension, National Kidney Foundation of Michigan, the Crim Fitness Foundation, the University of Michigan-Flint and Safe and Active Genesee for Everyone.

Besides events in public places, Food Day organizers are encouraging families to have healthful potluck dinners with friends, and to use these gatherings as opportunities to talk informally about food and our nation’s food system. For inspiration, has posted a number of delicious recipes from well-known chefs and cookbook writers. These recipes will be available at the Genesee County Food Day activities. The Genesee County Health Department encourages everyone to take advantage of local Food Day activities to think about their food options and to make healthier food choices. Our motto is better life, through better health.