Thursday, August 7, 2014

NYGiants/NBCNewYork/Quest Diagnostics Health and Fitness Expo Delivers on Promises: Great Family Event

Mark your calenders for next year because the NYGiants/NBCNewYork/Quest Health and Fitness Expo is an event to be added to your summer lineup alongside going down the shore or to the beach.

This was the second year of the event and it was promoted heavily on NBC TV. The event promised something for everyone and it delivered.

There were over 150 exhibits and activities. These included physical games for kids and adults, cooking demonstrations, health screenings, zumba, yoga, auditions for THE VOICE, meeting players, meeting NBC New York personalities and more. They were all over the stadium, on the field, in the corridors, outside but inside the gate, in the parking lot, and in rooms in the stadium. There was a main stage outside. When I got to the stadium Pam from The Biggest Loser Season 14 was on the stage giving a very motivational talk.

Pam from The Biggest Loser gave a fun talk about losing weight and keeping it off.  Photo by Suzanne Ordas Curry

The event really was free. I approached Metlife Stadium coming off of Route 17 was thinking about how little cash I had with me. I remembered the commercials all saying that the event was free, but it really didn't mention parking. Anyone who has ever attended an event at this stadium thinks about the parking, because the fee can put a serious dent in your wallet.  However, as I drove in I was thrilled to see that there were no attendants and I gleefully zipped right in. Something thrilling about not having to stop and pay. The only other time I did that was when I worked for Harry M. Stevens.

I did not get to visit all of the booths and activities because I was there with an exhibitor. However, I would say to allot at least 2 hours to see everything you may need to see, Events are sometimes spaced apart so there is some walking to do.

The celebrities of the day, aside fom the Giants players, were the NBC New York new team, The were behind a desk in the Meet and Greet room. Many of them were there at 1:00 as promised in the program, like the always smiling Janice Huff, Darlene Rodriquez, Chris Glorioso, Rob Schmitt and many more. If you wanted to meet them and get their autograph it was about a half hour wait, but it was worth it because they took time with everyone.
One of the newest Real Housewives of NJ from NBC's BRAVO, Amber Marchese was also on hand to pose and sign autographs.

Martha Byrne, from NBC's Crisis was also on hand. She was there as the spokesperson for Bergen County CASA for Children and also to help in a cooking demonstration for Bergen County's Healthy Eating...Ali Hussein was exactly what he says he is. Ali is a blind chef. Before he gave his cooking demonstration  he had a few words to say to Martha about his journey in life that landed him where he was that day. I could see her getting choked up listening to him.

He started the demo off with a short story about his life which was in essence a motivational story. "You can succeed in anything", he said. He then proceeded to make a Middle Easter dish, Beef Kheema. He did have a little help, as every chef doe, while cooking. In this case his helper handed him some items and told him what was in some of the containers, but Ali did the cooking and the chopping. This part was amazing - he chopped swiftly and accurately as any TV chef would.

Speaking of food, my only observation was that there seemed to be very few healthy food options there to satisfy one's appetite. I read in the program that theer were some healthy options, but the only food  that I noticed was the hot dog cart at the main entrance, and  Rita's stand a few tables away. There was also a stadium concession stand open with the usual stadium fare, chicken fingers, fries, and $7 pretzels. A smoothie or fruit cup stand would have made a fortune.