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Grundy County Hospital marks 60 years with Fair activities

July 22, 2012
Reinbeck Courier

Sixty years ago, the Grundy County Memorial Hospital (GCMH) opened its doors as the first public healthcare facility in the county. To celebrate the anniversary, GCMH is sponsoring health-promoting events in conjunction with the Grundy County Fair, July 23 27 in Grundy Center.

Healthcare history is the focus of Healthwalk, an outdoor walking tour past the Grundy Center locations where hospital care was provided from the late 1800s to the time the hospital was constructed. In the first half of the century, people who needed hospital care traveled to Waterloo or Marshalltown, or made use of one of the hospital homes that provided care in their home community. Only large cities had hospitals in small towns, hospital beds were located in doctor's offices for patients who needed an overnight stay.

The Healthwalk can be completed at any time during fair week. Walkers may pick up a Healthwalk map at the hospital, at the fairgrounds, or at local banks and libraries. Once you've completed the walk, your map can be turned in at the hospital to receive a treat in the hospital's East J Caf between 9:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m.

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The second event scheduled to mark the hospital anniversary will have you on your feet, moving to the music! GCMH is sponsoring the Fair Kick-Off party on Monday evening, July 23, with music and line dancing instruction. A professional dance instructor will be on hand at the party to teach line dancing, a dance for all ages and dancing abilities. The dance will begin at 7:45 p.m. or following the king and queen contest. The events will be held in Alumni Hall.

Hospital dietitians and chefs will lead two healthy cooking demonstrations during fair week. Heart Lovin' Cooking will be held on Fair Date Night, Tuesday, July 24, with healthy and convenient tips for a variety of summertime meals. Heart Lovin' Cooking begins at 6:00 p.m. in the Alumni Building. The second cooking demonstration takes place alongside the Farmer's Market, Thursday afternoon at 4:30 6:00. For those who have wondered what to do with the fresh veggies they buy at the Farmer's Market, this cooking demo will offer expert advice on storing and freezing fresh food, as well as knife techniques for chopping vegetables and fruits.

"As we celebrate sixty years of providing health care for Grundy County residents, the hospital is focusing on activities that promote good health. The hospital sponsored events during the Grundy County Fair are designed to follow the Blue Zones principles of moving naturally and eating more vegetables and fruits," remarks GCMH Community Outreach Manager Keely Harken. Blue Zones refers to the statewide initiative sponsored by Wellmark Blue Cross and Blue Shield to encourage communities to support healthy lifestyles. All of the hospital sponsored events are free and open to the public. For more information on any of the Hospital-sponsored events, contact Harken at 319-824-4152 or



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