South Orange MS Wellness Extravaganza Draws Hundreds for Fun, Fitness

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It was a party at South Orange Middle School last Wednesday, as hundreds of visitors attended the second annual SOMS Wellness Extravaganza. The event — free and open to the public — featured more than 80 health and wellness vendors and a host of fun, hands-on activities for kids and adults.

SOMS Physical Education teacher Allison Cahill, who spearheaded the event, tells more below.

Meanwhile, enjoy our photo gallery below; click on any photo to begin. Photos credit Allison Cahill and Louisa Maynard-Parisi.

“The event was incredibly successful this year. We doubled in size of vendors as well as participants. I know there were over 350 people that came out to join us for our special event and over 80 vendors.

There were many students who took leaderships roles in making the event successful. Students took turns leading the 6th, 7th and 8th grade health booths. The 6th graders covered goal setting and shared their health project called the 7 Day Challenge. The 7th graders educated the community about the dangers of drugs and alcohol. The 8th graders demonstrated acts of kindness. A few students gave away “free compliments” and others sang kindness carols.

Our famous Quintet, select choir, and a rock band of students played and sang music throughout the evening. There were many demonstrations and performances to compliment the night. The students, staff, parents, and SOMSD community came together to educate themselves on the various topics of health and wellness and engage with the wonderful resources we have in our area.

The Wellness Extravaganza was the culminating event of very successful health and wellness week. Students engaged in yoga and zumba on Monday and Wednesday. Tuesday brought GASP, The NJ Child Assault Team, Garden State Equality, and the Twim Experience in to talk about the importance of saying no to drugs and bullying. Teachers had a wellness day of massages and free lunch and participated in a pedometer challenge. The SOMSD parents had a keynote speaker, Lauren Muriello, on Monday night to discuss adolescence and stress and how to help kids deal with life pressures.

It was a comprehensive week of health and wellness. Our students had a blast while learning about significant health issues that face them today.”

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