Letter To The Editor: Support Of Many Made 2016 Health Fair A Great Success!

By PHILIP GURSKY
President
Los Alamos Heart Council

The 31th annual Los Alamos Heart Council Health Fair, held at Griffith Gymnasium on Saturday, Sept. 24 was another great success! 

We had over 2,500 attendees. There were more than 70 exhibitors representing a wide range of health-related organizations from Los Alamos and surrounding communities. A total of approximately 800 flu shots were given and hundreds of blood draws were administered, as well as many other health screenings.

With all the activities for kids and families, hundreds of parents and children came to the Fair this year. More than 150 free bike helmets were given out at the Fair and, in a new program, additional helmets will be given directly to elementary and pre-schools in Los Alamos.

The Health Fair is only possible with the support of many organizations, a large number of volunteers, and the broader community. This year the Heart Council is pleased to have enlarged and formalized our relationship with the Los Alamos Medical Center as an equal partner in putting on the Health Fair. Mary Beth Maassen of LAMC is our indispensable support contact for the Health Fair

In addition, we are pleased to have entered into an agreement with New Mexico Bank & Trust to sponsor our annual Bike Helmet Giveaway and enabled us to enlarge our program to make additional helmet donations to the elementary schools. And the Heart Council continues to be a community partner with the United Way of Northern New Mexico and we are grateful for their continued support.

We thank the phlebotomists from the LAMC blood lab for blood draws, nurses from many departments and other physician’s offices to keep the flu shot lines moving quickly and to the many LAMC Auxiliary volunteers (pink ladies) who assist on the day of the Fair. The staff from Medical Associates of Northern New Mexico are also invaluable in coordinating the blood draws. The members of the Heart Council put in many volunteer hours making the Health Fair a success.

Los Alamos Daily Post did a terrific job of publishing and distributing our annual Health Fair guide; KRSN supports the Health Fair through their on air interview and onsite remote broadcast; and the Los Alamos Monitor for their longstanding coverage and support for the Health Fair. Thanks to the Tuff Riders for help in fitting the bike helmets for the kids; to Stacy Castille from the Family YMCA who helped organize and sponsor the Children’s HeartSmart Poster contest; and to Dave Delanoy who prepares our Booth Maps and Vendor Directories.

A special thanks goes to Kristy Vigil at the LAPS rentals office, who provided extraordinary help this year. The High School personnel who assist in setting up the gymnasium before the Health Fair and in cleaning up are always great.

We always appreciate the time and dedication of our exhibitors, many of whom come every year. And, finally, thanks are due to the many members of the community that attend the Health Fair and make it all worthwhile.

We look forward to seeing you next year, at the 32th annual Los Alamos Heart Council Health Fair, which will be held at Griffith Gymnasium on the last Saturday in September, 2017.

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