As we wrap up National Nutrition Month in March and begin Walk Kansas (Extension’s eight-week health challenge) in April, the Ellis County Extension Office will offer several learning opportunities with research-based advice for a healthy lifestyle.

The public is invited to attend these educational programs. Save the dates and register to reserve your spot by calling the Ellis County Extension Office at (785) 628-9430.

The first program will be Simple Seasonal Meals at noon Wednesday. The free nutrition program will be at the Extension meeting room, 601 Main in Hays. (It is the program which was rescheduled due to bad weather in January.)

Donna Krug, Barton County Extension agent, will present information and recipes on cooking and eating with seasonal produce. Featured spring recipes will be sampled.

The benefits of harvesting and eating produce when at its peak are many. By choosing foods in season, you get all the benefits — food that tastes good, is good for you and is reasonably priced.

Please RSVP to the Ellis County Extension Office, (785) 628-9430. Bring a lunch to enjoy during the program if desired.

The Nutrition Banking program will be at noon April 15 at the Extension office meeting room, 601 Main in Hays.

Nutrition Banking is a fun way to make educated food choices to control the fat, sodium and sugar in your diet. This interactive event will help participants determine a personal food budget and learn to make trade-offs with their food choices.

Participants will use Wise Bucks to “purchase” food choices at the luncheon meal. Cost for the event is $5 per person or $3 for Walk Kansas team members.

Space is limited, so advance registration by April 13 is necessary to ensure adequate materials and lunch supplies. Registrations are considered complete when fees are paid. Contact the Ellis County Extension Office at (785) 628-9430 to register.

The regional Extension Full Circle Aging Expo will be from 10:30 a.m. to 3:15 p.m. April 22 at First United Methodist Church in WaKeeney.

The agenda features a series of three keynote speakers. Bryan Noone, RN, begins the day with an informative session on Sleep as You Grow Older. The noon-hour speaker via distance technology is Andrew Crocker, Extension gerentology specialist in Texas, on Master of Memory. In the afternoon, Dr. Erin Yelland, KSU Extension aging specialist, will present Over the Hill and Between the Sheets on sexuality in later life.

A resource fair also will be available for participants.

Those who attend the Full Circle Aging Expo also will receive four free follow-up sessions presented via technology at a variety of locations in the region. Sessions will cover these topics: Resizing Your Home, Alzheimer’s 101, Medicare, and Fall Prevention.

The cost for the Full Circle Aging Expo is $30 per person or $50 for two family members. Registration is due April 12. Late registration or walk-in fee is $35 per person (lunch not guaranteed for late registration.) Pick up a registration brochure at the Extension office or register online at www.northwest.ksu.edu/fullcircle.

An added feature of the Full Circle Aging Expo is the Full Circle Track for Professionals who can earn up to six CEU’s for participation. The hours for the professional track are 8:45 a.m. to 5:15 p.m., and the theme is Best Care Practices.

Speakers from varied professional backgrounds will address nutrition aspects of wound healing, the connection between oral problems and overall health, sleep issues of aging, mastering memory, managing chronic pain with physical therapy and specialty wound care.

Cost for the full-day professional training is $85 including lunch. The cost for morning only (no lunch) or afternoon only (no lunch) is $60. Register by April 12. More information and online registration is available at www.northwest.ksu.edu/fullcircle.

Join us for these educational opportunities in April and you’ll get reliable advice for living well. More information is available at the Ellis County Extension Office, (785) 628-9430 or www.ellis.ksu.edu. You also can follow us on Facebook at K-State Research and Extension-Ellis County.

Linda K. Beech is Ellis County

Extension agent for family and consumer sciences.