Black River Falls, WI – May brings Mental Health Month again. For the past six years, Jackson County Behavioral Health has hosted several events throughout the month of May to bring awareness surrounding mental health, as well as provide education to the community. This year, Jackson County Behavioral Health has partnered with Jackson County Public Health, and the Jackson County Birth to Three Program to offer the Jackson County Wellness Extravaganza, which will take place on Wednesday, May 17th from 4:30 to 7:30 PM at the Milt Lunda Ice Arena, located at 388 Melrose Street in Black River Falls, WI. This free event will highlight the importance of physical health, mental health, and social connectedness in overall wellness and there is something for all ages!

Research has shown that Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) have the ability to change a child’s brain, body, and behavior. Dr. Bruce Perry, renowned psychiatrist and author of “What Happened to You,” emphasizes the link between social connections, physical health, and mental health. “We really wanted that to be a focus of this year’s Wellness Extravaganza event. We wanted an activity or event that would allow social connections to be made, that highlighted the impact that past experiences can have on mental and physical health, and to learn how to better connect the brain and body to allow for healing,” said Jessica Stinson, Event Organizer and Jackson County Behavioral Health Manager. Dr. Bruce Perry writes in his book, “Our bodies are not designed for isolation or chronic stress; they are designed for connection and cooperation. Our physical and emotional health depend on it.”

“We have partnered with many individuals and agencies and are excited to offer a variety of activities and resources to promote physical health, mental health and social connectedness,” said, Stephanie Kennedy, Event Organizer and Jackson County Behavioral Health Social Worker. From interactive stations and professional photos to inflatables, prizes, and face painting, there’s something for everyone at the Jackson County Wellness Extravaganza.

Attendees will be able to participate in interactive and informational stations where they will learn about nutrition, mental health, substance abuse, car seat safety, internet safety, physical activity, fire safety, music and dance with licensed music therapists, and so much more. In addition, there will be stations where youth can make items to take home, such as sensory/mindfulness bottles, a feelings chest, and pinwheels to practice breathing. In addition, the Jackson County ADRC will be offering Bingocize and the Lunda Community Center will be offering short sessions to promote brain body connection and will include family yoga, family Zumba, Zumba for all ages, beginner yoga, etc. A professional photographer will also be on hand to take a free portrait. Attendees will also have the chance to win prizes donated by many different businesses and agencies, including passes to the local Lunda Center and Hoffman Aquatic Center, Jackson County Park Passes, State Park Passes, athletic equipment, scooters, Little Tikes trampoline, helmets, Fitbit, sensory toys and items, snowshoes, yoga equipment, outdoor and sport equipment, books, and more prizes continue to roll in!

Jackson County Behavioral Health will also continue their Green Ribbon Campaign in the Black River Falls community as well as yard signs in the various Jackson County communities, encouraging individuals to support mental health awareness and advocacy.

The Jackson County Wellness Extravaganza is organized by Jackson County Behavioral Health, Jackson County Public Health, and the Jackson County Birth to Three Program, as well as many partners and vendors that will be assisting with the event. It is open to all members of the community. The ADRC of Jackson County will be providing free transportation to any Jackson County residents in need. In order to receive transportation to and from the event, you can call 715-284-3978 to get signed up by May 10th. A free meal will be provided while supplies last by Falls Meat Service.

For more information about the Jackson County Wellness Extravaganza, please visit Jackson County Behavioral Health’s website at

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