Young Jedis have a free fun workout

Hundreds of young stormtroopers descended on a Bicester playground to channel their inner Jedi.

The event, which saw children take part in fun workouts with light sabers, was all part of one of Oxfordshire County Council’s free summer ‘shake-up’ events designed to keep children active and healthy during the summer holidays.

The county council’s public health team working with Cherwell District Council staged the special free play day in collaboration with Oxfordshire Play Association at Studio2 (the former St Edburg's School) in Cemetery Road, Bicester, on Tuesday.

Cherwell’s Youth activators put on hourly workouts and transformed four-year-old Julia Crisan, pictured above left, into a mini Princess Leia showing her how to workout with her light saber and learn all the right moves to ‘Train Like a Jedi’.

Julia’s mum Simona said: "She thoroughly enjoyed they day. We spent hours there taking part in games and facepainting. She especially loved that she got to exchange her old toys with new ones and the toy swap. The event was a great idea and we will definitely attend another one in the future."

Bradley Wright, aged six, from Bicester, pictured above right, was one of the children who queued to try out the ‘smoothie bike’, a specially adapted bicycle that allowed him to blend the perfect fruity concoction by pedalling as fast as he could.

His mum Katrina said: “The event was really good and the fact it was free made it even better.

“The school holidays can get really expensive so it’s important to have free, community events.

“My kids were there for hours and had great fun, they especially liked the smoothie bike, the dance activities and the stall that you coud swap toys for free.

“It would be great to have more events like this.”

As well as the healthy eating themed activities - all part of the county council's Change4Life campaign to get people exercising more and eating well -there were various sports on offer like dodgeball and capture the flag.

There was face painting, arts, crafts, a ceilidh too and even finger printing with the police.

Oxfordshire County Council’s Cabinet Member for Public Health & Education, Councillor Hilary Hibbert-Biles, also tried out the smoothie bike. She said: “It was really enjoyable and a fantastic way to show youngsters of all ages how fun exercising can be.

“They need to have 60-minutes of exercise each day and events like these, which I have always been proud to support, are wonderful opportunities to help stay active, build social skills and boost self-confidence. It makes children - and their parents - aware of the importance of being active and healthy in a fun and accessible way.”