The busy fall season is officially underway with school back in session and fall sports/programs in full swing. The New Canaan YMCA will continue its successful Family Dinner Night this year on Friday, September 27 from 6:00 PM – 8:00PM. The event is free and is available to all members of the community.
Dinner will be served at 6:00PM. Followed by activities and snacks including carnival games, airbrush tattoos, popcorn, and cotton candy.
The event, now in its tenth year, is inspired by “Family Day,” a national movement that informs parents that the engagement fostered during frequent family dinners is an effective tool to help keep America’s kids substance free. The Y’s Senior Director of Family and Youth Development, Davie Cedela commented, “It’s very easy for families to feel busy and rushed during this time of year. Our family dinners are meant to give families the opportunity to take a break and enjoy a fun night together.”
Encouraging families to eat together and spend more time with each other is in line with the 40 Developmental Assets presented by the Search Institute. According to the Search Institute, families that eat together generally eat more nutritiously, have teens that are less likely to be involved in risky behavior, have children with better language skills and academic scores, have a lower obesity rate, teach children to enjoy a variety of foods, and generally have better relationships with each other and their community. Additionally, according to the National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse (CASA), compared to teens who have frequent family dinners (five to seven per week), those who have infrequent family dinners (fewer than three per week) are:
- Almost four times likelier to use tobacco;
- More than twice as likely to use alcohol;
- Two-and-a-half times likelier to use marijuana; and
- Almost four times likelier to say they expect to try drugs in the future.
Those interested in attending Family Dinner Night can sign up at the New Canaan YMCA Front Desk or online at www.newcanaanymca.org through Tuesday, September 24. For additional information, or to register by phone, contact Nicki Jezairian at 203-920-1657.