(BIVN) – The West Hawai‘i Celebration Kickoff event for the Blue Zones Project® was held from 1:30 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. on August 26 at the old Sports Authority at Kona Commons.
The free, family-event featured “Move Naturally Activities”, a Downshift Lounge, Keiki Zone, and Plant-Slant Kitchen.
It also featured Dan Buettner, a National Geographic Fellow and New York Times best-selling author of “The Blue Zones” and “The Blue Zones Solution”. Buettner took to the stage after a Hawaii County Council proclamation in support of the project was read by Kona’s councilmember Dru Kanuha.
“I know it was announced, but I cannot tell you how important this is,” Buettner told the crowd in Kona. “This is the first county in America where there’s a proclamation saying that we are embracing the values of Blue Zone and making this island a healthier, longer-lived state. And the start moving it and passing more and more initiatives to make this place an even healthier – ideally, the healthiest – Island in Hawaii, and the healthiest county in America.”
Organizers say since 2009, Blue Zones has applied the tenets of Buettner’s books to communities and corporations across the U.S. and “has successfully raised life expectancy and lowered health care costs while bringing down smoking and obesity rates.” They say Blue Zones “takes a systematic, environmental approach to well-being, which focuses on optimizing policy, building design, social networks, and the built environment.”
There are already Blue Zones Projects in North and East Hawaii.