Interactive Arcade Games
at the JCC
I remember getting the Wii for my son and thinking how much activity it would inspire in our house. Then I watched him figure out how to bowl while sitting down and I knew it was not going to be the Olympic training that I had hoped it would be. I wondered what I needed to find that would require a player to stand and move around throughout the game. I am happy to report a local community center figured out how to take the Wii concept and get more than a thousand children up and moving.
The Siegel Jewish Community Center in Wilmington created JCADE–an arcade full of
interactive games that promote physical activity. The JCADE includes features such as:
- The Makoto, a six-foot steel tower triangle that combines a cardio workout with audio-visual stimuli
- Lightspace Play, which features an interactive floor surface to play games such as dodge ball and jump rope
- Bikes hooked up to PlayStation and programmed so the games won’t work unless the children are pedaling the bikes.
“The JCC is all about health and wellness,” says Donna Schwartz, associate executive director of the Siegel JCC. “We knew that children were less active because of video games and we wondered how to combine their interest in games with getting up and moving. Now they can play dodge ball where the children have to stay away from a lit-up ball. They are getting their heart rates up and they love it.”
The staff at the JCC knew how important JCADE could be for community health. Through community partnerships and grant funding, The JCADE can be used by students and youth groups for field trips.
“JCADE teaches children that exercise doesn’t have to be running laps, it can be Dance Revolution,” says Schwartz.
Although JCADE is making great strides to fight childhood obesity, the arcade is for people of all ages. This is good for me to know since I just learned how to bowl while sitting on the couch.
Running Fest Turns 10
This year the Delaware Marathon Running Festival will be 10 years old. In the past 10 years, Delaware has created and nurtured an amazing effort to motivate runners and inspire new ones.
“I was approached by the 50 State Running Club 10 years ago to start a marathon here,” says Wayne Kursh, president/CEO of Races2Run. “We held our first marathon and only expected about 200 people. We ended up having 1,500 people show up. It’s only gotten bigger and better since then.”
Can you imagine expecting so few and ending up with so many people? That’s like inviting a friend for dinner and she brings everyone who attended Woodstock.
Running, however, has taken on such a social spin, it’s not surprising that Delaware has such an active and thriving community. With running clubs throughout the state, the running community has expanded beyond racing to social gatherings and charitable endeavors. Friends are helping each other get in shape, become better runners and raise money through races to help the community.
Delawareans are motivating one another. Stacey Haddock Schiller of Pike Creek began running in 2008 to spend more time with her boyfriend, who was an avid runner. She since married the runner and finished her first marathon last fall. Talk about going the distance.
“I had dabbled in running before I met Joel,” she says, “but he inspired me to take it to the next level. I joined several running groups, including the Pike Creek Valley Running Club and Buckley’s Striders, and both my running and my social life are the better for it.”
If you have seven friends comfortable with doing 5Ks, consider the eight-person relay, or if it’s 10Ks for your gang, get some four-person relay teams together. If you don’t feel up to running, then come out and cheer the runners on. It’s Delaware, you will likely know everyone anyway.
Heart Healthy Vegetable Soup
From our friends at Willey Farms in Townsend comes this delicious and healthy winter soup. Make it on the stove or the slow-cooker, but just make it. And then please invite me over.
2 T olive oil
1 large onion, diced
3 medium carrots
2 cloves of garlic, minced
2 cups peeled butternut squash (1/2 inch cubes)
1/4 tsp. ground allspice
1 tsp. salt
cayenne pepper to taste
1 tsp. salt
4 sprigs thyme
4 cups low sodium chicken or vegetable broth
1 can (14.5 oz.) no salt added diced tomatoes
2 cups lightly packed kale, ribs removed and coarsely chopped
1 cup low sodium canned chick peas
1. Heat the oil in a large soup pot over medium-high heat
2. Add the onion and carrot and cook until they begin to soften stirring occasionally (about 6 minutes)
3. Add the garlic and cook for one minute
4. Add the butternut squash, allspice, salt and cayenne, stir to combine
5. Add the thyme, broth and tomatoes, including their juice.
6. Bring to a boil then reduce heat, cover and simmer for 10 minutes.
7. Add the kale and the chick peas. Cook until the squash is tender and the kale has wilted (about 10 minutes)
8. Pick out the thyme sprigs and discard before serving.
Saturday, Feb. 23
6th Red & White Fahrenheit Fright Run
Location Pencader Charter School, 170 Lukens Drive, New Castle
Time 10 a.m. (registration begins at 9 a.m.)
More info. firstname.lastname@example.org
Saturday, Feb. 23
Nanticoke Hospital’s Heart of Good Health
Location Laurel High School, 1133 S. Central Ave., Laurel
Time Health fair: 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.; cholesterol screening: 7:30 a.m. to 11 a.m. a.m.
More info. 629-6611, ext. 8948