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Eat Up: AISD Celebrates National School Lunch Week Oct. 11–14

Whole Kids Foundation partially funds salad bars at all elementary schools with $50,000 grant

Austin ISD is celebrating National School Lunch Week Oct. 11–14 to recognize the National School Lunch Program and the 77,000 meals served every day.

National School Lunch Week emphasizes healthy, global and local foods offered daily at AISD schools.

“School lunches are healthier than ever, with more fruits and vegetables, whole grains, and less fat and sodium,” said Austin ISD Nutrition and Food Services Director Anneliese Tanner.  “National School Lunch Week helps us educate parents and students about all the benefits of our lunch program, as well as our focus on providing more local and sustainable options.”

During National School Lunch Week, AISD cafés will expose students to new flavors, and educate them about the local food system. Throughout the week, all campuses will sample beets from Johnson’s Backyard Garden, an organic farm located in East Austin.

Elementary school parents are encouraged to join their child for a healthy school lunch on Wednesday, Oct. 12, in celebration of National Take Your Parents to Lunch Day.  The menu features two new recipes: a cilantro lime drumstick with rice and vegan lentil chili Frito pie, as well as a variety of fruits, vegetables and fat free or low fat milk. An adult lunch at elementary schools cost $3.50.

Additionally, AISD will be celebrating with the following events.

Tuesday, Oct. 11 – Nacho Average Food Truck Vietnamese Menu Launch

Anderson High School, 8403 Mesa Drive

12:20 p.m.–1:20 p.m.

The Nacho Average Food Truck will be transitioning to a Vietnamese menu featuring banh mi sandwiches served on local Texas French Bread baguettes. The menu was developed by AISD Executive Chef Louis Ortiz in partnership with Tien Ho, a nationally-recognized chef and Whole Foods Market Global vice president of culinary and hospitality.

Wednesday, Oct. 12 – Whole Kids Foundation Salad Bar Celebration

Sanchez Elementary School, 73 San Marcos St.

10 a.m.–noon

A ribbon cutting and celebration will be held for AISD’s Made-to-Order Salad Bar program, which is expanding to all elementary school campuses this school year. The made-to-order salad bars are made possible, in part, through a $50,000 grant from Whole Kids Foundation.

Thursday, Oct. 13 – Hot Off the Grill Hot Dog Sampling   

Mendez Middle School, 5106 Village Square

10:40 a.m.–1 p.m.

AISD will introduce students to clean labels and local products with samples of nitrate-free turkey hot dogs, served on a Texas French Bread bun.

Austin ISD was awarded the Texas Department of Agriculture Perfect Peach Award during the Local Products Challenge held during National School Lunch Week in 2015. The award recognizes districts that incorporate local ingredients from Texas in at least three meal components: dairy, protein, fruits, vegetables or grains. Offering a minimum of three local products every day, AISD will be participating in the Local Products Challenge again this National School Lunch Week.