Over the last month, students gathered for nine nutrition and NFL-themed Reward Summits throughout the Midwest.
The final six took place in Ames, Iowa, Sioux Falls, S.D., Minneapolis, Minn., Springdale, Ark., Kansas City, Mo. and Lake Forest, Ill. As a reward for their efforts and achievements in Fuel Up to Play 60, students had the opportunity to hear from dairy farmers, professional football players and dignitaries from their region.
At the events, students also thanked local dairy farmers for their 100-year commitment to supporting health and wellness initiatives in their schools and communities. Here are some of the highlights:
Ames, Iowa – April 21, 2015
Iowa State University’s Jack Trice Stadium was filled with more than 115 elementary and middle school students as they gathered to celebrate their Fuel Up to Play 60 achievements. Many guests visited the stadium to make the day special for students, including Iowa State Dairy Princess Mikayla Lien, Iowa State Dairy Princess Alternate Rylie Pflughaupt and Iowa State University alumni player and NFL Ambassador J.J. Moses, who spoke to the students about how he eats healthy and stays active. Kansas City Chiefs Mascot K.C. Wolf and Iowa State University Mascot Cy also joined in on the fun.
Sioux Falls, S.D. – April 24, 2015
Nearly 150 elementary, middle and high school students from throughout South Dakota came together at Sanford Fieldhouse to celebrate eating healthy and staying active. The special day included a visit from Minnesota Vikings Punter Jeff Locke who participated in football drills with students. The students also participated in healthy eating activities and an interactive dairy farming education session with South Dakota Dairy Princess Elizabeth Mayrose. At the event, each student also took the time to thank the South Dakota dairy farmers who help make the Fuel Up to Play 60 program possible.
Minneapolis, Minn. – April 25, 2015
This year’s Minnesota Reward Summit took place at Winter Park, which is the Minnesota Vikings’ practice and training facility. Before participating in football drills on the field with the more than 170 students, Vikings players Blair Walsh and Everson Griffen explained how healthy eating and staying active helped prepare them for a career in the NFL. Princess Kay of the Milky Way Jeni Haler shared what life on a dairy farm is like and Viktor the Viking, Minnesota Vikings Cheerleaders and Vikings player Sharrif Floyd also interacted with the students.
Springdale, Ark. – May 5, 2015
On May 5, nearly 100 elementary, middle and high school students from throughout Arkansas and Eastern Oklahoma filled the Jones Center in Springdale, Ark. Together, the students celebrated their Fuel Up to Play 60 achievements with a presentation from former University of Arkansas Razorback and Pittsburgh Steelers/Indianapolis Colts Linebacker Steve Conley who explained how healthy eating and staying active helped him prepare for a career in the NFL. Conley also participated in football drills with the students. Throughout the day, students heard from Dr. Blair Dean, a professor in Department of Health, Physical Education and Sport Sciences at Arkansas State University and chairman of Arkansas Governor’s Council on Fitness and local dairy farmer Cassie Davis. Each student also took the time to thank the dairy farmers who help make the Fuel Up to Play 60 program possible.
Kansas City, Mo. – May 12, 2015
Arrowhead Stadium was filled with more than 200 elementary and middle school students from throughout Missouri and Kansas on May 12. These students joined Kansas City-area dairy farmer Maria Poock to celebrate dairy farmers’ 100-year commitment to the health and well-being of America’s children and adults. The students also interacted with Kansas City Chiefs mascot KC Wolf, Chiefs cheerleaders and Chiefs alumni player Eddie Kennison, who participated in football drills with students and explained how healthy eating and staying active helped prepare him for a career in the NFL.
Lake Forest, Ill. – May 16, 2015
The Fuel Up to Play 60 Rewards Summits wrapped up at Walter Payton Center at Halas Hall in Lake Forest, Ill. More than 120 students from throughout Illinois were joined by Illinois Lieutenant Governor Evelyn Sanguinetti and Illinois dairy farmer Morgan Wendling to help celebrate their achievements and dairy farmers’ 100-year commitment to health and wellness. Students also interacted with Chicago Bears mascot Staley da Bear, Chicago Bears players Kyle Fuller and Will Sutton, and alumni player Anthony Morgan. Each of the Chicago Bears players explained the importance of healthy eating and staying active for at least 60 minutes each day and Fuller and Sutton took the field with students for 60 minutes of football drills and skills.