Sweethearts, Mavericks Announced for 2008 Heart Ball

HEALTHY HOSTS: Heart Ball Event Co-Chair Diane Tuttle was excited to announce her daughter Natalie Belie will be one of this year’s Sweethearts at the event. Mavericks and Sweethearts who are named are sophomores in high school that will participate in heart health education in the months following the Heart Ball.

Courtesy American Heart Association

The American Heart Association recently announced the girls and boys who will be participating in this year’s Sweetheart and Maverick program. These young people will be introduced at the “Route 66 Roundup” Heart Ball presented by Saint Francis Health System. The event will be held at the Tulsa Convention Center Saturday, Feb. 16, 2008. Master of Ceremonies will be First Lady Kim Henry.

Heart Ball is celebrating its 37th year. The Sweetheart and Maverick program with sophomore-age girls and boys was started in Tulsa to educate about the fight against America’s number one killer, cardiovascular disease, and to raise money for this fight.

“This is a notable education and leadership program for Tulsa area youths, as well as teaching them about the importance of heart health,” says Sweetheart Chair Jennifer Anthony.

Sweethearts and Mavericks commit to heart-healthy attitudes, philanthropy and volunteer service. Over the next few months, they learn first hand the importance of nutrition and fitness to guard against the disease. CPR training and a demonstration of an Automated External Defibrillator are also included. Through the program they learn the positive impact the American Heart Association is having in reducing death and disability from cardiovascular disease and about children who suffer from heart defects. During the year these young people will participate in social events while raising money and learning to serve as advocates for heart health.

The year began with a party for the parents held at Saint Francis Health System followed by a party for the kids hosted by Greg and Carol Wallace. In October, Mahogany Prime Steakhouse provided dinner at the Central Center at Centennial Park for mothers and children participating in the program. Guest speakers at this event State Rep. Eric Proctor and State Rep. Jabar Shumate spoke to the crowd about the importance of leadership and community service. They reminded everyone that our children’s health is the future and that childhood obesity must be curtailed for children to grow to be healthy adults.

In November, all participated in a Phone-a-Thon fundraising event at the American Heart Association office and a Health and Wellness Day at SemGroup. In January, the Saint Francis Children’s and Heart Hospitals will host an event with education and nutrition components, as well as an activity with pediatric patients and a look at the new Children’s Hospital. The participants will observe the inner workings of the hospital including operating rooms, cath labs, EKGs, etc. while learning about the importance of heart health.

“Hearts seem to be on the minds of many teen-agers so the American Heart Association is starting early educating them how to take care of their physical hearts, so time with their loved ones will not be cut short because of heart disease,” says Carol Wallace, Maverick chair. “These young people are being given an opportunity to learn, share and give back to their community.

“This is a great way to learn more about heart health,” says Maverick, Corbin Wallace. “This is a serious subject and we don’t want to have a heart attack.”

Other supporting sponsors of the event are The Williams Foundation at the Platinum level and Bronze sponsors Heart Rhythm Institute of Oklahoma, Oklahoma Heart Institute, and Premier Charter, Inc.

Updated 01-13-2008

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