"Let’s Move Marianas! Yengyung with the Kangkung" launched it Let’s Move! 2013-2014 campaign last Saturday at the Gilbert C. Ada Sports Complex in Susupe.
Let’s Move! campaign chair Amber Lynn Mendiola said this year, the campaign reached over 700 participants within the first hour of the event. These 700-some youth and parents woke up early Saturday morning to participate in the four-hour event.
"We have even more activities than last year and more than 30 sponsors that made today a huge success," Mendiola said. "We want everyone on the island to live a healthy lifestyle and raise awareness on how to live a healthy life style."
One mother at the event said: “We came to last year’s Lets Move! event and had a blast. I decided to bring my two sons and husband with me again this year and we are having an even greater time."
A variety of activities, like tai-chi, soccer, and weightlifting, hosted by organizations like the Northern Mariana Island Football Association and Saipan Soccer School, Get Fit CNMI, Saipan Ultimate Frisbee Club, Northern Marianas Athletics Association, and others had many members of the community engaged in fun sports events under the hot sun.
Those who registered and participated in athletic events received a complimentary vegetable package filled with tomatoes, eggplant, and kangkung (water spinach), from the Women, Infants, and Children program.
"WIC is giving a bag of tomatoes, eggplant, [and] kangkung to people who show up at today’s event," said WIC clinic manager Ruth Sablan. "All of these vegetables are purchased from the Farmer’s Market and we are hoping that families will serve local, healthier foods to their kids."
The event also featured many booths exhibited by the campaign’s sponsors. See related story on Page 8
Gov. Eloy S. Inos appeared at the end of the event, saying he is glad to see the youth "enjoying themselves and doing something good for themselves."
"The turnout is amazing. I wish we had this kind of event many times during the year." Inos said. "This kind of event is what is needed, this is it."
At the very end of the event, participants were treated to a sweet surprise from the Saipan Music and Dance Studio performers, with a flash mob of Beyonce’s Move your Body just before parents and their children headed home after an active morning.
The CNMI is now an official ’Let’s Move! City" as of July, which was a nomination approved by the National Let’s Move! Council.
Mendiola told Saipan Tribune that the CNMI ranked No. 16 and is in the Top 20 in the nation among 400 other Let’s Move! cities.