Earth Day—With a Twist!

In School Nutrition’s June/July 2016 issue, Contributing Editor Kelsey Casselbury explained what happened “When the Circus Came to Town” in Beavercreek City, Ohio. This big top-based promotion doesn’t seem like a natural fit with annual Earth Day observances, but it’s become part of an annual promotion campaign tradition organized by Student Nutrition Supervisor Connie Little, SNS. “Earth day with a twist,” Little calls these special themed events, which have been terrific showcases of creativity! Take a look at some of the others, she’s organized:

  • One year, the district received a grant from the Ohio Farmers Bureau Association, which allowed the Student Nutrition department to bring a “dairy fairy” and a live cow to every elementary school in Beavercreek City. The art teachers helped the students make themed posters, and the librarians decorated the library with dairy-themed books. “I still hear about it, that’s how much of an impression it made on these kids,” Little remarks. “Principals extended lunch time so all the kids could see the dairy cows.”
  • Another year, to celebrate the humble tomato, Beavercreek schools partnered with Heinz, which supplied 5,000 packages of tomato seeds (one for each student). The company also gave the school nutrition staff access to its corporate graphics team to provide professional assistance. Little coordinated development of posters for both primary and secondary schools that showcased how to grow tomatoes and the benefits of eating them.
  • When the Student Nutrition team opted to celebrate soybeans and the Ohio farmers who grow millions of bushels each year, tractors were parked at every elementary school, and farmers joined the students in the cafeteria to eat lunch. Edamame was introduced to students as a special menu item. “I hope it made an impression on them that we really need to know where our food comes from,” Little reflects. “It doesn’t come under cellophane wrap; there’s people working hard every day to put food on your plate.”

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