University of Vermont

Cultivating Healthy Communities

Military Kids Invited to OMK Challenge in Northfield

Northfield--In celebration of April as National Month of the Military Child, University of Vermont Extension's Operation: Military Kids (OMK) and Norwich University will host an afternoon of fun outdoor games and activities, April 20.

The second annual OMK Challenge, a free event for military kids ages 6-17, will be held from 1 to 4 p.m. at the new Shaw Outdoor Center at Norwich University in Northfield. Younger military kids, ages 3 and up, also may participate if supervised by a parent.

Norwich University athletes and OMK staff will organize various age-appropriate games and activities such as parachute games, hula-hoops, juggling, Frisbee golf, jump roping and other active outdoor games. In case of inclement weather, the event will be moved indoors.

In addition, Hero Packs will be handed out to any participant who requests one. Non-military youths and community groups fill these backpacks with items to help military kids connect with their deployed parent(s). Depending on the recipient's age, the Hero Packs typically include connection or communication tools such as a disposable camera, photo album, scrapbook or journal and pen as well as fun items such as stickers, a stuffed animal or Frisbee plus locally donated items and a handwritten note of appreciation.

To register, go to Registrations are limited to the first 30 kids to sign up and will be accepted up until the day of the event, space permitting.

To request a disability-related accommodation to participate, please contact Stephanie Atwood at (802) 656-0346 by April 5.

Vermont OMK partners with community organizations throughout the state to provide activities and support for 4,000 military kids. It operates in collaboration with the U.S. Department of Agriculture's National 4-H program and U.S. Army Child, Youth and School Services.

For information about upcoming activities, including other Month of the Military Child events, visit or