Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Today: First Lady Begins Let's Move! Anniversary Tour In Clinton, Mississippi

Celebrity chef Rachel Ray joins Mrs. Obama for school chef cook-off; follow the action on Twitter with #LetsMoveTour...
After launching her Let's Move! campaign on Feb. 9, 2010, First Lady Michelle Obama paid a visit to Jackson, Mississippi, to check out the state's efforts to reduce very high child and adult obesity rates.  It was the second road trip for the Let's Move! campaign, and on Wednesday Mrs. Obama returns, visiting the town of Clinton as she begins a two-day tour celebrating the third anniversary of her initiative.  Joined by celebrity chef Rachael Ray, the First Lady will host a cooking competition between school lunch chefs, at the combined campus of the Northside and Eastside Elementary Schools, where 1,400 children are enrolled.  

The school lunch duel will be broadcast on Rachael Ray Show on March 11. 

"Mrs. Obama and Rachael Ray chose to highlight school lunches in Mississippi, which was rated the most obese state in the nation for several years, because the state’s childhood obesity rates have declined by 13% among elementary school students in recent years," the White House said. 

Mrs. Obama will make remarks discussing the state's anti-obesity efforts and the work in the Clinton School District.  It has a total enrollment of 4,572 students K-12, according to Patrice Guilfoyle, Communications Director for the Missisippi Department of Education.

The District has "mobilized the entire community to make their schools healthier to support their children’s physical wellness and academic achievement," the White House said.

"With leadership from the Superintendent, Board of Education, parents, students and community leaders, Clinton made healthy schools a top priority and implemented district-wide changes to bring physical activity and nutritious choices to students – all with no additional funding. "

Racially, the District has 49.7% black students and 43.8% white students, said Guilfoyle.  43.7% of District students receive free or reduced-price lunches with the National School Lunch Program.

Tweets about Mrs. Obama's visit will be on @LetsMove and @FLOTUS, with the hashtag #LetsMoveTour.

On Thursday Mrs. Obama will continue her tour in her hometown of Chicago, where she will be joined by Education Secretary Arne Duncan, Olympic gymnasts and tennis star Serena Williams for a Let's Move! event that promotes more physical activity in schools. Later in the day, Mrs. Obama will discuss healthier food choices at a Walmart store in Springfield, Missouri.  The company in 2011 made a five-year commitment to the Let's Move! campaign that included lowering prices on produce, building stores in areas identified by USDA as "food deserts," and reducing sugar, fat, and salt content in private-label foods.

*CLICK HERE for links to all posts about the third anniversary of Let's Move!.