Saturday, April 22

now ain't that phat?

What a way to spend a Saturday. Inside the Dallas Convention Center with 600 people I'd never met before (well, except for Mayor Laura). This was part of Shaping America's Health .. the next seven hours in a surprisingly fast-moving 21st Century Town Meeting® called Shaping America's Youth.

Turns out this is the 2nd one of these ever held. The first was in Memphis, earlier this year. Dallas had over 1046 registrants but only 600 made it to the event. I guess that's a good turnout, especially on one of the 4 nice weekends in Dallas every year (otherwise it's too hot/wet/cold).

The meeting itself was reasonably hi-tech. Each table (10 people) had a Mac iBook connected on a wireless network to a Think Tank near the stage. As we Solved World Hunger, our ideas were passed to this group which cut-and-pasted them into a presentation, offering near-immediate gratification.

The session leaders were David Campt and Julia Sullivan; they did a commendable job staying on their feet the entire time. Many of the attendees (37%) were Hispanic; several accepted the offer of earpieces for a Spanish translation (see also: Avance Dallas). We were handed wireless "voting gadgets" which had a USB interface at the top; the thing was called an "OpinionCounterIQ" (sadly, I didn't think to take a photo of it).

Random stuff:
0- Texas is the 6th fattest state; 63% of Texans are overweight or obese.
1- 35% of school-age children are overweight or obese; only 11% attend PE [Physical Education] classes.
2- David Campt (session leader) said that overweight Americans will die 19 years early, on average.
3- an upcoming TV show is due to be broadcast here on May 27th (channel 11); "The Biggest Generation" will be a good thing to TiVo.
4- Coming soon (April 27th): Bike & Walk to School day. Yeah, like parents will leave their SUVs at home to escort Junior to school. Right.
5- The Cooper Institute has program called "Promoting healthy behaviors in children"

Other speakers:
6- Bradie James (a Dallas Cowboy);
7- Alex Wolens - the mayor's 15-year old daughter;
8- Terry Wade regarding Marathon Kids (Richardson ISD);
9- Dr LeAnn Kridelbaugh, of the Dallas Area Coalition to Prevent Childhood Obesity (probably an offering of Children's Medical Center of Dallas)

1 comment:

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