Healthy and Happy on the Ponderosa!

Ponderosa Playland in St. George is our newest Early Childhood Featured Site!

Authored by Emily Cooke

Dawn Gauthier owns Ponderosa Playland Child Care in St. George, Maine and this is her first year on board with 5-2-1-0 Goes to Child Care. She shared with us how 5-2-1-0 Goes to Child Care and her Let’s Go! contact, Adrienne Gallant, have been making a big difference in her program where she serves 15 children between the ages of 2 and 6.

Healthy Valentines Day Lunch“I went to our local food program training in October and Adrienne was there talking about Let’s Go!. The program sounded so interesting and easy to do that I wanted to sign up right away.”

Dawn reported how at this training, Adrienne talked about fruit juice and that it’s not necessary for good nutrition. Adrienne taught how there are many easy ways to get your daily fruit servings from whole fruits instead that include the healthy fiber which juice doesn’t have.


“So from that point on, I immediately took juice out of our daily routine. The kids don’t miss it and at this point they know why we never have juice. Every afternoon we have a fresh fruit or vegetable as part of our snack. I already feel better about this.”

Dawn has also been working on promoting healthy celebrations.

Banana Ghost Healthy Snack“We also only do healthy celebrations and I am putting this in my handbook as a policy. I had a mom ask if she could bring cupcakes for her son’s birthday. I told her we had joined Let’s Go! and cupcakes were no longer allowed and she said she would do something healthy instead!”

Dawn is a shining example of how to implement the Priority Strategies #1 – Provide healthy choices for snacks and celebrations; limit unhealthy choices, and #2 – Provide water and low fat milk; limit or eliminate sugary beverages.

A big high-five to Dawn and Ponderosa Playland from Let’s Go! for hitting it out of the park this year!! Check out their Facebook Page!