Over 300 elementary aged children learned the importance of exercise, healthy habits, being safe and more on May 14, during Blue Mountain Health System's 21st Annual Children's Fair.

This year's theme was "Cultures Around the World."

From 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., the Lehighton Recreation Center was transformed into a trip around the globe, complete with 15 stations to help teach the children about the benefits of being healthy.

A total of 330 students, who ranged from preschool to second-graders, were involved in the five-hour event.

The schools that participated included Mahoning Elementary, Shull-David, Curious Kids Play and Learn Preschool, CCTI Daycare, and East Penn Elementary.

There were three sessions during the day. Each session lasted an hour and a half and provided the students with health, physical and nutrition education, safety measures, and fun activities that taught about the benefits of living a healthy and safe lifestyle.

Mary Lou McGeehan, community education coordinator at Blue Mountain Health System, explained that the program was created to help children make better choices at a young age.

"We wanted to teach the children healthy habits when they're young so that when they grow up, they are prepared," McGeehan said.

To make this annual event a success, Blue Mountain Health System has continually partnered with area organizations and in-house departments.

Those who participated this year included the Carbon County Dental Van, AmeriHealthMercy, Rehab Services, Thomas Jefferson School of Nursing, Carbon-Monroe-Pike Drug and Alcohol, and HealthWorks, Emergency Services.

Also partcipating were Carbon Career and Technical Institute, Black Lung Coalition and X-ray, Penn State Cooperative Extension and Safe Kids Carbon County, Penn State Master Gardeners, the Pennsylvania Department of Healthy, Domestic Violence, and the Pennsylvania Office of Attorney General.