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Lake Macbride plans healthy events for check passing

LAKE MACBRIDE– Park officials hope a variety of outdoor attractions keep friends of Lake Macbride State Park active and aware of healthy choices as they celebrate a $10,000 grant to be used for fitness and activity improvements next week.
That cash award, from Coca-Cola, comes with the park in active contention for top honors in Coca-Cola’s 2011 America Is Your Park award. The designation will be highlighted at the park Wednesday, Aug. 3, with outdoor features ranging from fun games with healthy food choices to an exhibit of area birds of prey… and delivery of that $10,000 check.
The check will be hand-delivered to Iowa Governor Terry Branstad and park officials at 10 a.m., by members of the Solon cross country team in a short ceremony at the main lodge, near the beach of the state park, five miles west of Solon on Highway 382. The public is invited, with a special invitation extended to those who use the trails, beach and lake itself for outdoor recreation. On hand will be a couple busloads of kids from the Boys and Girls Clubs of Cedar Rapids.
From 9-10 a.m., the Macbride Raptor Center will have birds of prey on display, explaining their role in nature. Park officials will describe fitness features of the park, such as the wooded trails and the five-mile Solon to Macbride trails. Spokespersons from the Iowa Department of Health will emphasize how healthy snacks fit into an active, outdoor lifestyle. Following the check ‘run-in’ at 10 a.m., there will be several contests, ranging from tent pitching races to grapefruit shot put for anyone willing to display their outdoor skills.
The celebration comes with Lake Macbride State Park in the hunt for the $100,000 national award in Coca Cola’s America’s Favorite Park program. Voting online (www.LivePositively.com) continues until Sept. 6. Enter Lake Macbride State Park in the search window and vote as many times as you choose. Uploading a photo taken in the park counts as five votes. Last year, it took 1.6 million cybervotes to declare a winner.