Potato Derby Highlights Creativity and Safety

woman and young man; Potato Derby at American Family Children's HospitalMADISON - With a potato ambulance crew standing by, American Family Children's Hospital Kohl's Safety Center hosted the first annual Great Potato Derby in celebration of Children and Health Care Week.

Twenty-four patient and staff teams competed in a series of six race rounds to determine the overall winner. Additional voting helped determine the best team name, safest design and most creative potato.

Potatoes were fitted with either wheels or a small cart in order to race on a sloped track. Teams were scored on crossing the finish line first and incorporating safety into their design. Creativity was also important and clearly on display with entrants decked out in sequins, glitter and even passengers.
Great Potato Derby Winners 
  • The overall race winner was Team Super Sib Spud, sponsored by American Family Children's Tyler's Place staff
  • Best team name was Team Arrhythmics, sponsored of course by the Pediatric Cardiology staff who had an actual heart shaped potato
  • Safest Design was Team Kohl's Safety Center, whose potato was snuggly strapped into a "potato safety seat"
  • And the number-one patient entry was Team Christina, whose "Sweet Potato" was adorned with flowers
Serving as race official was Alex Cordell, who along with his dad Monty, created the track and devised the racing procedures as part of his Eagle Scout project. potato car; Potato Derby Highlights Creativity and Safety

Other events during the week included theme days such as Burn and Poison Safety, Safe Kids and Fitness, Nutrition and Wellness Day. Local Madison restaurants donated meals for families whose children were patients of American Family Children's. And throughout the week, milk and Girl Scout cookies were available for families and visitors in the Pediatric Specialty Clinics.

According to Mary Kaminski, director of patient and family services, "This week helps get the message out that health care is not just about illness, it's about wellness."

Children and Health Care Week was coordinated by American Family Children's Patient and Family Services as part of Child Life Month, a national initiative intended to focus awareness on the importance of helping children and families stay healthy and cope during times of illness.

Date Published: 03/21/2008

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