LAWTON, OK – As part of celebrating National Farmers Market Week the Lawton Farmers Market will hold Kids Day at the Lawton Farmers Market: The Great Cucurbit Conundrum this Saturday, August 13.
"We are always looking for ways to get kids involved in the market and teach them the value of local food. There is a disconnect between most kids and their food. They need to question where their food comes from, how it is raised, and if it is good for them," said Dr. Ed Legako, board president of the Southwest Oklahoma Growers Association.
The Lawton Farmers Market will partner with TSET Healthy Living Program to host fun activities for the kids. A scavenger hunt, cucurbit painting, free face painting, free balloon animals, and a variety of other activities are planned for the morning.
"The farmers market provides a great opportunity to further the food discussion, and buying from local farmers reinforces that message. Kids are naturally curious and we want them to know their farmers. Our farmers are proud of the work they do and love to talk about it so we want the kids to ask questions. What is your favorite thing to grow, why do you like farming, how long does it take a watermelon to get that big? What is a cucurbit? It's important for the kids to know just who is growing their food," Legako added.
Kids will have the opportunity to get their hands dirty and plant their own cucurbits to grow at home.
"There's still time to plant cucurbits for fall gardening. Summer squash, cucumbers, melons, gourds, and other types of cucurbits are all well suited to mid to late summer sowing. They germinate quickly in the warm soil and thrive in the heat of late summer," said Market Manager Keith Hall.
"The Farmers Market is the perfect place to begin educating our children about eating better and moving more. Oklahoma's adult obesity rate is 33 percent. Oklahoma now has the sixth highest obesity rate in the nation. Early intervention and education are critical to break this cycle," said Ashley Yeary Green, Wellness Coordinator for the TSET Healthy Living Program at the Comanche County Health Department.
The Lawton Farmers Market is held on Saturdays and Wednesdays from 7:30 a.m. until 12:00 p.m. at the Comanche County Fairgrounds. For more information visit their Facebook page or email the market at firstname.lastname@example.org.