WESTERVILLE, OH — More than 1,700 Westerville area residents have discovered FitQuest, Westerville, OH's free community fitness initiative developed by the Parks and Recreation Department, launched last January. But, a new kid is in town (pun intended).

In June, Westerville Parks and Rec partnered with Columbus Children's Hospital for the FitQuest Kids' Club to address the obesity epidemic among children. The hospital's Center for Healthy Weight and Nutrition is a partner of the new club that helps educate children and their parents about the importance of healthy eating, physical activity and decreased exposure to television, computer screens and video games. The center will provide nutrition guidance for a weekly nutrition and activity calendar for children aged 5-12.

“We introduced this program to summer camp programs, and charts are available at Westerville pediatrician offices, the Westerville Community Center and Westerville Public Library,” says Mike Herron, fitness manager of Westerville Parks and Rec.

The department also began an outreach project with Hanby Elementary School where measurable outcomes are being calculated throughout the school year to track progress. Sports will also play a role in the Kids' FitQuest as Children's Sports Medicine will offer a variety of classes at the Westerville Community Center to address conditioning and injury prevention in a variety of sports.