Milk Fair encourages activity.
Milk Fair aims to increase activity levels in students
“We all know that activity levels amongst youth are decreasing,” says Janine Macintyre, sport projects co-ordinator for Sport Nova Scotia.
The hope is to reverse that trend with the biannual Milk Fair.
According to their website, the Milk Sport Fair, named for the event title sponsors, the Dairy Farmers of Canada, is a fully-interactive sporting event for students to get active and learn about the many sport options available in Nova Scotia.
Since 2002, more than 66,000 students from across the province have participated in the Milk Sport Fair program. Each year, the Milk Fair travels around the province.
This spring’s event was held at Acadia University with a variety of hands-on booths set up in both the gymnasium and the arena. Students were encouraged to flow freely through the various booths at their own pace, trying new sporting activities. For each activity they tried, students were given a stamp on their passport, enabling them to win prizes.
“Students are exposed to new sport and leisure activities with the hope they find something that will motivate them to stay or become more active,” says Wolfville school principal, Steve Keddy, whose students participated in this year’s fair.
He says the students thoroughly enjoyed the experience and learned a tremendous amount about a variety of sports as well as having healthy, active lifestyles. Keddy says school trips like these are important
for the students, as they align with curriculum outcomes.
Keddy also noted the school had participated in the Milk Fair in the past and that this one was the best.
Roxeanne Seaman, professor of Kinesiology at Acadia, was at the Milk Fair with her Grade 3 son Jacob. Through her role as board
member for Sport Nova Scotia, Seaman was involved with the first fair 16 years earlier. At that time, she and some of her students had a booth for parasport, presenting a slide show of some of the sports that were offered at the time.
Seaman says she loves the new format of the fair.
“It was exciting to see that the booths are all interactive so that the students can try many sports that are available in our province,” she says.
Chase Nichols, a Grade 3 student from KCA, agreed saying he learned about all the different sports and activities they might like. His favourite was the tackle football booth in the gym where students completed an obstacle course, with the final step being to jump on a giant football tackle dummy.
Grade 4 KCA students Evan Rogers loved the judo practice, Thomas Duke enjoyed trying archery, lacrosse and dry-land snowboarding, while Luke Forse and his friends played flag tag for more than an hour at the rugby station.
“We hope that kids will try something new or even learn about a sport that they didn’t know was available in their community,” says Macintyre.
Grade 4 students from KCA met two former Olympians at the Milk Fair – Luke Demetre, left, who competed in 2014 at the Sochi Olympics in bobsled, and John Macleod, who competed in waterpolo in the 1976 Montreal Olympics.
Isla Churchill tries dry-land snowboarding at the booth set up by Ski Martock to introduce students to the sport.
Aaron Pulsifer practices his putting skills at the Milk Fair held at Acadia.
Cole Burke stopped at a booth to learn what the cadet program had to offer. Here, he is practicing his aim with an air rifle.