Family Field Day a success

More than 80 children and their families exercised, tried new sports, and learned about healthy eating last week.

The Palatine Jaycees hosted the third annual Family Field Day on Saturday, September 9 at Falcon Park Recreation Center. The Jaycees partnered with local businesses, sports clubs, and other community organization to provide 17 activity stations that promote physical activity and healthy eating.

Children who visited at least six of the stations entered a free raffle for 20 gift baskets of toys and games. All children enjoyed free healthy snacks, indoor and outdoor fun, and beautiful sunny weather.

A new feature of Family Field Day this year was a baseball pitch speed radar booth, presented by Palatine Youth Baseball and Softball and sponsored by Starting Point Realty. A few parents said they would sign up their children for baseball after seeing untapped pitching talent.

Other new stations included yoga led by Jaycee Ashley Soriano; dance led by Jaycee Margie Musary; tug-of-war led by retired Jaycee Dan Imlay; hopscotch presented by Katie Walthall of Macaroni Kid; running tips by Jaycee Pat De Marco; a workout ropes activity and free teddy bears from Castle Chiropractic; and an interactive display about added sugar in our foods from Amita Wellness.

Palatine Rugby Club, Penguins Lacrosse, Renegades Youth Hockey, the Palatine Fire Department, Celtic Soccer Club, Windy City Bulls Basketball, and JP Wood Marital Arts once again participated in the annual event. Jaycees Stephanie Wermes and Mike Musary also hosted soccer and football stations, respectively.

Fun outdoor toys including bubbles and hula hoops were available for children too young to participate in sports drills.

“Really, the goal of this project from the beginning has been to help kids–and their parents–to be aware of the many ways to be more active,” said event chair Barbara Cima. “Physical fitness doesn’t have to mean ‘buy a gym membership,’ if that’s not your thing. We’re fortunate in Palatine to have so many options and resources, and we really just want to share that with everyone, and celebrate it.”

Palatine Jaycees volunteered their time to plan and run the event, and chapter funds covered expenses to ensure the event would be free for kids. Aldi and Mariano’s grocery stores donated gift cards to help pay for refreshments.

“We want to thank all of the organizations that helped with the event, as well as the Palatine Park District and Falcon Park staff,” said Cima. “I think it was a great event, and we look forward to working with them again next year.”

The Palatine Jaycees plan to continue hosting Family Field Day and encourage any organizations interested in participating next year to contact the chapter at or 847-604-0288.