This year’s UC Davis Wears Red Day, our third annual, to be held Friday, Feb. 5, will have not one but TWO giant hearts:
- The one we make together, students, staff and faculty, standing in formation (it’s fun, it’s inspirational, it shows our commitment to keeping our hearts healthy)
- The one we walk through — the 13-foot-tall, 26-foot-long, inflatable MEGA Heart (it’s fun, it’s education, it shows us what we’re taking care of)
The day’s other activities include the student-run Battle Heart Disease Fair, Zumba exercise and CPR training, all in a tent on Hutchison Field and all for free.
We’ll gather for the heart formation at noon. Of course, the more people we have and the more people who wear red, the better our giant heart is going to look.
“We want the world to know that this is an important issue to UC Davis,” said Mariana Henry, a student member of the UC Davis Wears Red Day planning team.
Chancellor Linda P.B. Katehi launched UC Davis Wears Red Day in 2014 in collaboration with cardiologist Amparo Villablanca, director of the UC Davis Women’s Cardiovascular Medicine Program. Villablanca will make remarks at the Battle Heart Disease Fair.
While great strides have been made in reducing the toll of heart disease, it is still the leading cause of death in the United States. Yet, up to 90 percent of heart disease is preventable with lifestyle habits that include heart-healthy eating, regular physical activity and eliminating tobacco exposure.
UC Davis Wears Red Day coincides with National Wear Red Day, meant to draw attention to women’s heart health, in particular. Our event encompasses men as well — with a particular emphasis on students.
“By reaching out to students through this event, we hope that they can learn how to make lifestyle changes today that could prevent heart disease in the future,” said Henry, who serves as president of the Aggie Heart Association.
Battle Heart Disease Fair
The Aggie Heart Association and two other student organizations, Alpha Pi Sigma and Phi Delta Epsilon, are sponsoring this year’s fair, to be held from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., with a break at noon so people can join the heart formation.
The sponsors are among the organizations that are eager to share with fairgoers a variety of heart-health information on such topics as diet and exercise. Other participating organizations so far: American Red Cross Club, Bayanihan Clinic, Clinica Tepati, MAPS (Minority Association of Pre-Medical Students), Student Nutrition Association, and Student Health and Counseling Services.
The fair program also includes a Zumba exercise session. Free tastings of healthy snacks are planned, and beverages will be available for purchase.
MEGA Heart exhibit
The giant inflatable heart will be in the same tent, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. You’re invited to walk through the heart to learn about cardiovascular functions, observe examples of various types of heart disease, and see displays of some of the latest medical treatments for heart problems.
Thirty-minute training sessions in hands-only cardiopulmonary resuscitation are scheduled from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. The American Heart Association recommends hands-only CPR in cases where a teen or adult suddenly collapses in an “out-of-hospital” setting (such as at home, at work or in a park). “CPR can more than double a person's chances of survival,” according to the AHA.