'Healthy Healdsburg' Reaches Ripeness

Wellness fair Sept. 30, city proclamation, Sonoma County certification imminent.


After two years of cultivation, Melita Love's vision for "Healthy Healdsburg" has ripened to near-perfection.

"It took a lot of tenacity," said Love, operator of Healdsburg's , a "gleaners" organization that redistributes surplus produce to groups in need. "The city has really stepped up and given its support."

Love made her comments after receiving a Healdsburg City Council proclamation Tuesday night. In the proclamation, City Council endorsed the goals of "Healthy Healdsburg," which is sponsoring a Sept. 30 at the and which will likely receive certification this month as an official partner with Sonoma County Health Action.

"We are aligned with their goals and we support their initiatives," Love said of the county health organization, which organizes such campaigns as iWalk, iGrow and iWorkWell. "During in May, we planted 100 tomato plants at the community garden, and now we have tomatoes to give to

Another example of the community's efforts has been the offer of a free $20 worth of produce at for people who have CalFresh EBT cards. The program, enables people on limited incomes to obtain fresh produce.

Love, who has been developing Healthy Healdsburg as a concept for the past two years,  said the city's support for the entire vision has helped to attract a slew of community partners, ranging from and to and -- and many more.

"This is really a grassroots effort," said Healdsburg City Councilman Tom Chambers in approving the proclamation. "We really appreciate all the work you've done, and we're hoping to set up more community gardens at Foss Creek School."

The wellness fair, dubbed "Celebrate Health!," will be on Sunday, Sept. 30, , from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Healdsburg Community Center at Foss Creek School, 1557 Healdsburg Ave.

An outgrowth of five years of health fairs held at Alliance Medical Center, this event is an expansion and a re-imagining of a traditional health fair.

"Celebrate Health!" will be a fun-filled, action-packed day, with activities ranging from blood pressure screening to a climbing wall to dance demonstrations to CPR training.

Healthy food will be in abundance, and participants can make their own smoothie by pedaling a stationary bicycle.

"We want the entire community to find something educational and enjoyable to do at this fair," said Sonja Drown, Recreation Manager for the City of Healdsburg. "We'll have a strong emphasis on exercise, recreation, nutrition and fun."

Drown said the fair is put on by Healthy Healdsburg, which she described as a partnership of organizations and individuals that support the Sonoma County Health Action Initiative.

The event is sponsored, in part, by Summit State Bank. Healthy Healdsburg partners include the City of Healdsburg, Alliance Medical Center, Healdsburg District Hospital, California Human Development, Healdsburg Shared Ministries, Farm to Pantry, the Healdsburg Chamber of Commerce, Carr Chiropractic, Sonoma County Health Action, Healthcare Foundation Northern Sonoma County, and more.

"Our new event will include health screenings and advice, as we offered in previous fairs, but will include a new focus on healthy foods and active lifestyles," said Ray Holley, Community Relations Consultant for Alliance Medical Center. "We will have a variety of safety and fitness activity demonstrations, cooking and nutrition demonstrations and more."

For more information, see www.ci.healdsburg.ca.us or  call (707) 431-3301.

Ann Carranza September 06, 2012 at 12:49 AM
A correction to the article: The Healdsburg Certified Farmers' Market has been "matching" funds for CalFresh EBT for more than a year (I wrote about it last year, and I believe it was operating the year before). While the amount of the match has increased from $10 to $20, the program has been in effect for a long time. See the Healdsburg Patch article written last year (July 13, 2011): http://healdsburg.patch.com/articles/good-gardening-and-good-food-go-hand-in-hand The article included the matching funds information.
Keri Brenner (Editor) September 26, 2012 at 05:10 PM
Hi Ann: Thanks for the time check. You're right -- the CalFresh EBT program was announced in 2011 as per the article I wrote (link is above in the article) and the article you wrote. "Earlier this year," meaning 2012, is incorrect. My how the time flies! I will fix in the article. Thanks!


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