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Home > > NewsroomApril Showers Bring... A Teaching Garden for Detroit Merit Academy!

April Showers Bring... A Teaching Garden for Detroit Merit Academy!

Students will learn to cook fun, healthy snacks and meals while using the garden bounty they grow

Detroit – April. 19, 2013 –Students at Detroit Merit Academy will have the chance to eat what they sow this summer thanks to a Teaching Garden sponsored by Health Alliance Plan (HAP) and the American Heart Association (AHA). Broccoli, squash, cucumber and tomato seedlings are among those being planted tomorrow at Merit's "Planting Seeds for Mind, Body and Spirit" festival.

The AHA Teaching Garden program combines nutrition education with garden based learning. In this real-life laboratory, students will learn how to plant seeds, nurture growing plants, harvest produce and understand the value of healthy eating habits.

Merit students will use the fruits and vegetables they grow in the teaching garden this summer at HAP's Ready, Set, Cook! hands-on cooking program- as they discover for themselves a lifetime of fun, healthy cooking and eating habits.

WHAT: As part of Detroit Merit Charter Academy's "Planting Seeds for Mind, Body and Spirit," festival, students will plant their teaching garden.
WHO: Detroit Merit Charter Academy students, staff and parents will join with HAP and AHA staff to plant the schools teaching garden, create garden crafts and make healthy snacks.
WHEN: Saturday, April 20, Festival begins at 11 a.m. and wraps up at 3 p.m. EST. Brief remarks and planting will take place at approximately noon.
WHERE: Detroit Merit Charter Academy, 1091 Alter Road, Detroit, MI 48215

Excellent B-roll and photo opportunity

About HAP's Ready, Set, Cook! Program
Ready, Set, Cook! is a free, afterschool program, sponsored by HAP, which addresses obesity by teaching children in our community health eating habits and food preparation skills. By teaching children to prepare simple, healthy meals and snacks they will be empowered to make healthy food choices. HAP's goal is to inspire the whole family to eat healthier, use fewer processed foods and eat out less. For more information about Health Alliance Plan, go to

About the AHA Teaching Garden Program
With childhood obesity rates threatening the future of millions of children, Teaching Garden co-founder Kelly Chapman Meyer and the American Heart Association have teamed up to launch an innovative national, school-based program to help kids become healthy. Aimed at elementary school students, the AHA Teaching Gardens provide hands-on learning experiences. The gardens are just one of several strategies the AHA is employing to reach its aggressive Health Impact Goal: to improve the cardiovascular health of all American by at least 20% while reducing deaths from cardiovascular diseases and stroke by 20% by the year 2020.

Media Contact: Amy Strauss, Public Relations Specialist at HAP, On-Site contact is (248)-514-9838. Office number is (248)443-7762. Email is

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