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May 25, 2012


Wellness Fair offers activities, information booths for 20th year

About 450 participants at the 20th annual Fort McCoy Wellness Fair May 9 had opportunities to run, walk and learn more about health from the organizations and businesses supporting the event.
PHOTO: A Wellness Fair participant enjoys a massage. Photo by Liz Weaver
A Wellness Fair participant enjoys a massage at the Rejuvenate Therapeutic Massage booth. (Photo by Liz Weaver)

The Wellness Fair was held in conjunction with the Strong B.A.N.D.S. (Balanced Lifestyle, Actively motivated, Nutritional health, Determined to excel, and Strength and conditioning) campaign.

The campaign’s goal is to promote programs and activities at Fort McCoy and highlight opportunities in the neighboring communities for Soldiers and their Families to stay physically and mentally fit.

Pam Budda, Wellness Fair coordinator/point of contact, said the host facility, the Rumpel Fitness Center, had a booth with information about fitness classes, facility offerings and the personal trainer program to help people get into shape and improve their well-being.

“The event helps encourage participants to commit to a healthier lifestyle,” Budda said.

A 5K run, two-mile walk and basketball skills competitions were part of the event.

PHOTO: A Wellness Fair participant checks out information at the Viterbo University booth. Photo by Liz Weaver
A Wellness Fair participant checks out information at the Viterbo University booth. (Photo by Liz Weaver)

Staff Sgt. Elsie Ortiz from Fort Dix, N.J., who was attending an Army Basic Instructors Course at Fort McCoy, said she participated in the 5K run and checked out information at all the nutritional booths.

“I’ve never participated in anything like this before,” Ortiz said. “This is a great event and a great facility.”

Angela Balaban of the Wisconsin Military Academy said she came to the event to learn about new diets and different methods of exercises.

“I plan on following through on these things for the next year,” Balaban said. “When they hold this next year, I hope to be ready to compete in the run.”

Derrick Dawson of the Fort McCoy Directorate of Logistics and his spouse, Staff Sgt. Nichole Dawson of the 86th Training Division, attended the event together.

Both said they checked the health information and planned to put the information to good use over the next year.

“We also checked out the vendors at the event and the new businesses in the community,” Derrick Dawson said.

Nichole Dawson said she also enjoyed the games available and tried her hand at the Lightning Basketball Game.
“I plan to be back here next year to see what they have,” Nichole Dawson said.

Master Sgt. Travis Gordon of the Wisconsin Army National Guard, a military technician at Camp Douglas, said he appreciated his employer giving him time to come to Fort McCoy to see his wife, who works at Fort McCoy, and their daughter, who is in child care here.

The Family competed in the 5K run, with their daughter being pushed along in a stroller.

“I appreciated coming here to support my wife and see our daughter,” Gordon said. “I also took time to visit the booths and looked into the nutritional information.”

Other highlights of the event included a mobile mammography service from BlueCross, BlueShield, an American Red Cross Blood Drive and a Three-Point Shoot Out. The blood drive met its goal with 26 pints of blood collected.

Jobi Spolum, Fort McCoy Marketing director, said a number of area businesses, which participated in the event through the commercial sponsorship program, provided informational booths at the event.

The event helped support the Army Community Covenant by providing services to members of the entire Fort McCoy community, including military and civilian personnel, their Family members and retirees, Spolum said.

Spolum added the commercial booths also allowed people in the Fort McCoy community to see what services and products are available in the local communities.

Sponsors for the event included: Gundersen Lutheran, USAA, Great Wolf Lodge, Bellevue University, BlueCross BlueShield, Family Vision Center, Fitness Equipment Services, GEICO, GNC, Prosthetic Laboratories, Tomah Memorial Hospital, Allergy Associates of La Crosse, Allied Health Chiropractic, Mayo Health System Franciscan Healthcare, Identity Works, Live Strong Forever, Phillips Tomah Pharmacy, Sam’s Club, and ResCare Home Care Wisconsin. Additional Support Provided By: Fort McCoy Exchange, Chippewa Spring Water, McDonald’s, Mix 96.1, Ocean Spray and Reinhart Food Service. No federal endorsement is implied.

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