Kids cycle for smoothies

Krystle Wagner • Feb 16, 2017 at 4:00 PM

For 30 seconds at a time, students on Mary A. White Elementary School’s Fuel Up to Play 60 team peddled madly on the bike in the Grand Haven school’s cafeteria to turn ingredients into smoothies.

The blender bike combined promoting physical activity and introducing students to Michigan-grown fruit. The bike’s back tire was connected to a blender that combined vanilla yogurt, apple juice and Michigan-grown cherries, blueberries and apples.

Students also used the smoothies to celebrate Michigan Cherry Slurp Day.

Physical education teacher Scott Przystas said the overall goal is to expose students to Michigan-grown cherries like they did state-grown apples during the Big Crunch in the fall. By introducing students to the local fruit, it gets them to question where their food comes from and start conversations at home.

Previously, Fuel Up to Play 60 teams throughout Grand Haven Area Public Schools have led various health-focused activities such as Zumba events. Students have also tried foods such as vegetables and hummus, guacamole and asparagus.

Looking ahead, Przystas said he hopes using the blender bike will become a reward for classrooms instead of sweet treats.

Fourth-grader Harrison Fogg said he thought the bike was “really cool.”

“It’s like a win-win,” he said. “You not only lose weight but you’re eating healthy at the same time.”

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