The Gene Bianchi Community center was abuzz with activity on Thursday, June 28 as the City of Oakdale hosted its inaugural City of Oakdale Fitness Fair. The first time event was hosted for the 100-plus full time and part time city employees.
Close to 30 vendors partnered with the city, spending the afternoon presenting employees with information in a variety of health-related areas.
City of Oakdale Human Resources Manager Patrick Mondragon was the mastermind behind the first time event. He noted a city employee’s sudden turn with illness as a motivation and inspiration to become proactive with educating the city staff.
“It was a real eye opener for me,” Mondragon said. “It was a very active city employee. So I started thinking of what would be a good way to motivate all employees to be healthy.”
A committee of six, representing the varying departments was formed and in April of this year the planning of the event commenced. Committee members reached out to professionals in all areas of health including: nutrition, stress management, exercise, dental, massage and podiatry.
Two “Lunch and Learn” classes were also hosted during the event to educate attendees on food choices and maintaining a healthy body.
Employees were encouraged to attend and visit the varying representatives. They were given passport books to have signed by vendors as well as list notes and contact information. Employees visiting 15 of the vendors were entered into a raffle.
“If nothing else, overall awareness,” Mondragon said of what he hoped the event accomplished. “Just awareness of all the different organizations that are out there in Oakdale. Informal, formal and just encourage the employees to think about their overall health.”