Utica, NY (WIBX) - March is National Nutrition Month and the County's Women, Infants and Children Program is holding a series of events to raise awareness about the importance of proper nutrition, in maintaining good health.

"Eat Smart New York" -- a Cornell Cooperative Extension program, is joining forces with WIC for a Wellness Fair this Thursday afternoon at Donovan Middle School in Utica from 2:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. Officials say the fair is directed towards students, parents and faculty interested in learning about WIC and ESNY programs. Healthy snacks as well as educational materials will be provided.

An "Open House" is scheduled for March 17, from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. at the Cornell Cooperative Extension on 121 Second Street in Oriskany and organizers say the event will feature games and educational exercises.

And, the Rome YWCA will present an educational program on proper nutrition and "ways working families can stretch their food budgets", on March 18, from Noon to 2:00 p.m. in Rome. Officials say the goal during National Nutrition Month is to stress the benefits of maintaining a healthy life style through proper nutrition and physical activity.

In a released statement, Dr. Gayle Jones, Oneida County Director of Health said, "Eat Smart New York and the WIC program share the common goal of providing both supplemental assistance and education on the critical nature of proper nutrition and healthy eating habits to insure growth and development throughout our lives."

County Executive Anthony Picente added, "A goal of ours has been to make as many people aware of the benefits of proper nutrition and a healthy lifestyle as we possible can. These initiatives represent the types of outreach we have been focusing on to accomplish that goal, and I commend all parties involved for their efforts."

For more information about the scheduled events contact the Utica WIC office at (315) 798-5066 or visit www.ocgov.net.