Apple Lines - Fryhover
Crispy Comes to Life
Last fall, the Washington Apple Commission launched its new and improved Web site with the assistance of a Washington State Department of Agriculture grant and countless hours of work by commission staff. The new look and feel has proven to be a success, resulting in a 70 percent increase in visits.
With the emphasis on health and nutrition, the timing was perfect to update www.bestapples.com to include new information on the health aspects of eating apples and the importance of eating Washington apples as an integral part of a diet.
With the help of another WSDA grant, a character called Crispy will come alive in the Kids section of the Washington Apple Commission Web site on September 1 this year! A new look and a new attitude are on the drawing board with an emphasis on health and nutrition for our youth. The new Kids section will target children between the ages of 7 and 11, offering apple-related games and activities, with an animated Crispy providing positive comments and encouragement along the way.
Crispy guides children from our apple orchard to Crispy's Apple Stand, where children have the options of Fun Facts, Games and Activities, In the Kitchen, and Kid's Eye View. Fun Facts will teach children about Washington apples in an exciting game-oriented manner. Games and Activities will be packed with crossword puzzles, word searches, and two new interactive maps that will challenge children to find the 12 apple-producing counties in Washington and indentify the 26 countries where the Apple Commission promotes Washington apples. In the Kitchen will provide fun apple recipes that are easy to make and enjoyable to eat, such as caramel apples and apple pie. Kid's Eye View will offer children the opportunity to tell us what they enjoy about Washington apples in an essay format. Each quarter, the best essay will win a free tee shirt.
Also included at Crispy's Apple Stand will be The Teacher's Corner, providing educators with downloadable materials to use in the classroom emphasizing the health and nutritional benefits of eating Washington apples. In development is a poster outlining our health message that will be available to teachers free of charge to reinforce the importance of apples in a healthy diet.
Crispy comes alive on our Web site in September!
This summer, the Washington Apple Commission has its third intern. Erik Zavala graduated from Wenatchee Valley College this year with associate degrees in agriculture and organic tree fruit.
The six-member Zavala family left Mexico in 1995 for Stockton, California, where Erik's parents worked in the cherry orchards. Upon harvest completion, the Zavala family packed up and headed to Wenatchee, Washington, which has been their home since. At nine years old and speaking only Spanish, Erik found his first year at school challenging. The differences between school in Mexico and the United States were dramatic.
The high school years were probably the most challenging for Erik, but his hard work and life story caught the attention of several teachers at Wenatchee High School, who encouraged him to pursue a college education. These teachers were so impressed with Erik that they expressed a willingness to assist financially if necessary to support his college studies. This vote of confidence motivated Erik to apply for scholarships and work in the fruit industry to pay his own way through Wenatchee Valley College.
The recipient of several scholarships, Erik will attend the University of Idaho this fall to study horticulture and teaching. After he graduates, I look forward to welcoming Erik into the Washington apple industry as a multicultural personality who can serve as a beacon for today's youth. In the meantime, Erik will spend the summer learning about the Washington apple industry through the Apple Commission's intern program.