Healthy Food Served Up at Winter Festival

Feb 19th @ 7:22 am in Local Events, News, People, Public Service by Scott Staley

Cottonwood Elementary Winter Festival Photo

Pictured in Photo from left to right: Elisha Cummings, Barbara Bynum, Jeff Johnson (CES Principal), Jenny Stangebye, Jeanine Bierschank, Judy Kuntz, Hannah Grady (CES Kitchen Manager)

Cottonwood Elementary put sodium, sugar and processed food in time out during their annual Winter Festival dinner served to over 300 students and parents February 8th. Partnering with the Valley Food Partnership and Re1J School Food Services, parents transformed the previous year’s menu which featured soda, nachos, and rice krispie treats into a healthy, made from scratch meal showcasing locally grown food. Parent and organizer Barbara Bynum was inspired by her participation on the Valley Food Partnership’s Live Well Coalition, to organize a pasta and salad dinner in order to provide a much healthier, nutritious meal. Kathy DelTonto, director of School Food Services and Carol Parker of the Valley Food Partnership helped create the menu and source local food. Greens from Buckhorn Garden, onions from Circle A Gardens and organic beef from Parker Pastures replaced many of the food items normally purchased from outside the area. Kathy DelTonto said, “We are always willing to help parents with ideas and resources to bring healthier food onto the plates of our students, whether it’s school lunch, class parties, or school events.” According to Parker, “The Valley Food Partnership and Live Well Montrose Olathe hope other schools and parents will seek opportunities to partner with us is sourcing local food that tastes great and is highly nutritious. It’s so important for kids and parents to know that school is a place to learn healthy eating habits that effect everything from achievement to lifelong health outcomes.”