Ag Progress Days Family Room to promote family health, wealth, fitness

July 06, 2011

University Park, Pa. -- The simple goal of living a healthy lifestyle is not so simple in today's increasingly complex society. Many people are overwhelmed with the steady stream of new information about ways to eat more nutritiously, become more physically fit and make better financial decisions.

Visitors who come to the Family Room building at Penn State's Ag Progress Days, Aug. 16-18 at Rock Springs, can cut through the information overload to get practical tips that can start them on the road to physical and financial wellness, according to Matthew Kaplan, professor and extension intergenerational specialist in the College of Agricultural Sciences.

"Many families find themselves so busy that they barely have time to have meals together, let alone to engage in conversations and plan ways they could work together to adopt healthier lifestyles," Kaplan said. "One way to begin the conversation is to bring your family to the Family Room at Ag Progress Days."

Kaplan said the Family Room building will offer displays dedicated to promoting healthy eating, healthy lifestyles and spending time together as families. Exhibits will focus on strengthening families by providing them with practical information on many facets of family life.

Visitors to the Family Room -- on Main Street between West 8th and West 9th streets on the Ag Progress Day grounds -- also will learn how to begin family conversations about ways to eat healthier foods, decrease risk for developing diabetes, make wiser financial decisions, adopt more active lifestyles and identify poisons in the home.

Penn State faculty members and extension educators will staff several interactive exhibits at the event:

--"Get Ready to Fly Financially" will present information about extension financial and consumer literacy programs (

--"Drink Up," offered by the Penn State Nutrition Links program (, will emphasize the importance of drinking enough water in your diet.

--"Learning Signal Words to Prevent Accidental Poisonings In and Around the Home" will feature a mini-golf game, sponsored by Penn State's Pesticide Education Program (

--"Family Fitness" will showcase an extension program designed to fight childhood obesity by helping children make healthy food choices and increase physical activity (

--"Dining with Diabetes" will show visitors how they can successfully manage diabetes through proper diet and physical activity (

--"Home Food Preservation" will illustrate preservation methods that will ensure that food is nutritious, good-tasting, and safe to eat (

--"Lead Poisoning Prevention in Young Children" will help visitors identify and mitigate lead hazards in the home.

In addition, a variety of food demonstrations, highlighting nutritious, easy-to-prepare recipes, will take place throughout each day.

Sponsored by Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences, Ag Progress Days is held at the Russell E. Larson Agricultural Research Center at Rock Springs, nine miles southwest of State College on Route 45. Hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Aug. 16; 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Aug. 17; and 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Aug. 18. Admission and parking are free. Free shuttle bus service between the Ag Progress Days site and downtown State College will be available.

For more information, visit the Ag Progress Days website at Twitter users can find and share information about the event by using the hashtag #agprogress.

  • Children admire a chick at Ag Progress Days' Family Room.

    IMAGE: Penn State

(Media Contacts)

Last Updated July 11, 2011