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SARATOGA SPRINGS — Concluding the month of love and heart-healthy awareness, the Saratoga Regional YMCA (SRYMCA) kicks off this year’s “Be a Hero” campaign for their annual fundraiser.

The YMCA pre-school students welcomed attendees by singing the Barney and Friends theme song, “I love you.” This set the tone of the event, that emphasized how closely health, community, and love interconnect throughout Saratoga county’s YMCAs.
This year’s face of the “Be a Hero” campaign is Air Force veteran, Joe Miller. Miller was suffering from diabetes, losing his vision and his overall health was rapidly declining. During his six months stay at a Veteran’s shelter in Ballston Spa, he was referred to the YMCA’s financial assistance program.
According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), more than 100 million Americans have diabetes or prediabetes. Diabetes can lead to life-altering complications including kidney disease, heart disease, blindness, and strokes. 
“A healthy lifestyle is your road map for managing diabetes, which is the key to preventing or delaying complications,” states CDC website.
Access to an affordable place to get on track with a healthy lifestyle made all the difference in Miller’s life.
“It (the SRYMCA) helps everybody. No matter who you are, no matter what your background is, your color, your creed, or where you come from this financial assistance program is there to help. You can’t beat that at all,” said Miller.
The YMCA pre-school, the pool and swim lessons and the LIVESTRONG program – which is designed to assist cancer survivors to improve their physical fitness – are just a few of the programs in addition to the financial assistance program that is funded by the annual campaign.
“We’re excited that we are able to provide the opportunity for the community not just to give to the Y, but really to give through the Y and make a difference,” said CEO Andrew Bobbit.
Sixty percent of the SRYMCA staff have donated to the fundraiser already. This year’s goal is to raise $400,000 to provide life-changing experiences that will better the community of Saratoga County. 
Published in Sports
Thursday, 31 January 2019 10:40

A Week of Health and Wellness

SARATOGA SPRINGS — The Saratoga County Chamber will kick off their 5th annual Health and Wellness week this Sunday, Feb.3.
To assist in achieving new year’s resolutions to become more active, participating fitness facilities will open their doors to the community. They will host workshops, training sessions and inform the community of all the people and services available to help them reach their health goals.
Modeled after the infamous “restaurant week,” the chamber’s health and wellness council introduced Health and Wellness week in 2014 to allow local fitness and health-related businesses and nonprofits to promote their health and wellness services.
The overall objective is “to encourage local people to try something new,” said Tom Shimkus, the Saratoga County Chamber President. Aside from the will to help guide the towns’ people to a fitter life, the Chamber has their own personal goal, “to make sure, through their (health businesses) efforts that Saratoga becomes one of the healthiest places to live and work,” said Shimkus.
According to the University of Wisconsin Population Institute’s annual county health ranking, Saratoga county was ranked #5 of healthiest counties in NY state when the health and wellness council began. In the years since Saratoga began their health and wellness week, they have moved up the ranks, even taking the number one spot one year. Saratoga Springs conveniently possesses natural healthy lifestyle traits including access to free spring water, it’s lake and state parks.
President Shimkus has one bit of advice for those attending this year’s Health and Wellness week, “invite a friend or family member or co-worker it increases the likelihood that you’re actually going to do it—and you help someone else out too.”
Published in Sports

SARATOGA SPRINGS – As the country’s collective waistline continues to expand, the need to educate younger generations to make smarter decisions becomes more and more important. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, approximately 12.5 million children between the ages 2-19 are considered obese. Whether it’s the lack of physical education, the increase in availability of processed foods packed with calories and sugar or the rise of television and video games as a pastime activity; learning to live healthy is something you should learn sooner rather than later, in hopes to carry those habits with you for the rest of your life.  

Published in News