Owensboro Health will sponsor "A Celebration of Food + Art + Health" at the Owensboro Regional Farmers Market Saturday.

For several years now, the health system has walked the talk when it comes to the healing power of the arts. For example, OH Regional Hospital invites actors and musicians to perform on the first Thursday of every month. The hospital offers patients a TV channel dedicated to the arts.

During the holiday season, artists regularly perform in the hospital lobby. The hospital's walls are lined with original artwork, and the hospital brings art projects to patients' bedsides.

In March 2018, OH and the Kentucky Arts Council co-hosted a two-day conference in Owensboro to demonstrate how cities across the state combine food, art and health to improve lives and change communities.

"We recognize these components are vital pieces to building a vibrant, healthy community," said Debbie Zuerner Johnson, OH director of community engagement.

The Owensboro Regional Farmers Market offers the perfect opportunity to demonstrate the connectivity between food, art and health, Zuerner Johnson said. "The event is a celebration of these things."

Between 8 a.m. and noon Saturday at the farmers market, which is at the corner of Parrish Avenue and Triplett Street, OH will present live music, dance, healthy snacks, kids' activities, a community art project and more. The event is free to the public.

The Bluegrass Music Hall of Fame & Museum, Owensboro Art Guild, Owensboro Symphony Orchestra and Theatre Workshop of Owensboro

are just a few cultural nonprofits that are scheduling performers for the event.

Owensboro Museum of Fine Art will host a community art project. After this weekend, the 4-foot-by-6-foot mural will be mounted and will hang in OHRH's lobby through October.

"It depicts a surprise," said Mary Bryan Hood, OMFA executive director. "No one will know what it is until everyone paints their portion and it's put back together again."

Each person receives a 6-inch-by-6-inch square of the mural to paint. Then, the pieces are reassembled, much like a jigsaw puzzle.

Hood appreciates the health system's focus on art and healing. Later this year, OMFA will host a major exhibit titled Art, Food and Health: Let's Eat during the museum's 43rd Holiday Forest Festival of Trees.

"The arts are wonderful for us," Hood said.

On Saturday, the OH Healthpark community wellness staff will present demonstrations, distribute recipes and hand out healthful snacks. The health system's trauma services department will give away bicycle helmets.

For more information about this event, go to https://www.owensborohealth.org/news-events/farmers-market-events/.

Renee Beasley Jones, 270-228-2835, rbeasleyjones@messenger-inquirer.com

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