Calvin Carrot or Penelope Pear could be the star in your child’s next adventure at the Great Lakes Children’s Museum in Traverse City. The museum and Munson Healthcare are partnering on a new nutrition series aimed at helping youngsters understand the importance of making good choices about snacks and meals.

“We know that one in three children in the U.S. are overweight or obese,” says Tara Rybicki, R.D., coordinator of Community Health for Munson Healthcare. “We see this new program as a fun way to teach young children and their parents about nutrition and how to incorporate more fruits and vegetables into their diet.”

The partnership involves four classes, one per quarter in 2019, for preschool and elementary-aged children. The classes will involve a hands-on educational activity, healthy snack, and take-home materials to help families begin “choosing well.” View museum events, including the classes, on the Great Lakes Children’s Museum Facebook page.

The first class is Wednesday, Jan. 23 at the museum from 10:30 a.m. to noon. Among the activities is an opportunity for children to create a storyline involving fruit and vegetable characters. Participants also are taught about the importance of eating different colored fruits and vegetables, as well as leading an active life by tracking their “move-it minutes.”

Museum Development Director Lisa Pointe notes the class is included with the $7 admission fee to the museum, or free for museum members. Children under 1 are always free.

“We see this collaboration with Munson Healthcare as something that fits well with our community mission to promote learning,” Pointe says. “Understanding early in life how important our food choices are can have lasting benefits for the child and our community.”

The Great Lakes Children’s Museum is located at 13240 S. West Bay Shore Drive.

More information on Munson Healthcare wellness programs can be found at

—Press release provided by Munson Healthcare

Northern Michigan Medical & Health

Photo(s) by Carly Paszek