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Kids Keep it Cooking at the Rye YMCA

RYE, N.Y. -- Elementary school children have been cooking up a storm at the Rye YMCA the past few Mondays thanks to the after-school program's healthy cooking class. According to School Age Program Coordinator Yanique Powell, the program was something specifically requested by the children.

"It started as a (school break) camp program, and the kids liked it and asked if we could do it after school," Powell said.

Powell added that the key to the program is finding the right balance between health and fun.

"We try to stay healthy, but we also try to make things that are easy, healthy and fun," Powell said. "We want it to be something the kids actually want to eat themselves."

In past classes the children have whipped up, with help from Powell and others, strawberry smoothies and blueberry muffins, but during Monday's final cooking class the children were treated to vanilla and chocolate pudding with a side of bananas and strawberries.

When asked to name their favorite part of the class, almost all of the Y's chefs pointed to enjoying the finished product. However, 10-year-old Milton School fourth-grader Jessup Lopez, who cooks with his grandmother at home, offered a different answer.

"I like it because we are all friends and are making it together," Lopez said.

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