Story URL: http://news.medill.northwestern.edu/chicago/news.aspx?id=157469
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Balloons lead the way to St. Francis Hospital's annual HeartFest in Evanston.


HeartFest educates in matters of the healthy heart

by Lisa Owad
Feb 18, 2010


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Lisa Owad/MEDILL

Stella Wolfe, 77.

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Lisa Owad/MEDILL

Laurence Rosen, 64.

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Lisa Owad/MEDILL

Harice Leavitt, 80.

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Lisa Owad/MEDILL

Joseph Zawadzki, 74.

A healthy cooking demonstration and free screenings for cholesterol, diabetes and blood pressure were features of the annual HeartFest event at Evanston’s St. Francis Hospital on Thursday. February is American Heart Month, and attendees were ableto attend lectures, learn about healthy food and receive screenings.

Participants and organizers speak about the reasons people need events such as this.

“Last year we had a lot more people coming for free screenings. Last year we had a lot of patients come because it was free and they couldn’t afford it.”–Margo Schafer, director of public relations, St. Francis Hospital

“I’m here to learn and also here to take blood pressure, cholesterol and sugar screenings. I enjoyed the meditation.”–Stella Wolfe, 77

“I came for the cookies. I had the screenings. That’s the main thing. I have a doctor, but it’s too expensive.”–Laurence Rosen, 64

“It’s free, conveniently located, I got the mailer and most of my physicians are here.”–Harice Leavitt, 80

“To get educated. This is an excellent forum for disseminating information about healthy heart. One can live to a ripe old age, hopefully.”–Joseph Zawadzki, 74

“I always come to the HeartFest to get my blood and sugar checked out. I learned some things I didn’t know. It’s convenient, free, and I stay on top of things. I get three things at once!”–Delores Walker