The Fort Carson 2018 Baby Expo at the William “Bill” Reed Special Events Center May 16, 2018, drew about 400 attendees, to include 200 families. The event featured a guest speaker, local resource agencies and representatives from Evans Army Community Hospital’s Mountain Post Birthing Center to provide one-on-one information to expectant and new parents. (Photo by Jeanine Mezei)
Evans Army Community Hospital hosted the 2018 Fort Carson Baby Expo at the William “Bill” Reed Special Events Center on May 16 to a large crowd of Soldiers, Family members and expectant mothers from throughout the local community.
About 400 people attended the anticipated event coordinated by the Mountain Post Birthing Center team at Evans ACH to support families during this special time in their lives.
“Our target audience is for those family planning, expectant parents and parents of newborns,” said Maj. Lynae Place, the event organizer and MPBC chief. “The Baby Expo is designed to increase awareness of prenatal education and other resources that are available within our community.”
With an abundance of local resource agencies, newborn education, and lactation specialists on site, the event served as a one-stop venue for questions and valuable advice.
“It was really helpful,” said Spc. Audrey Marquez, a biomedical equipment specialist assigned to the 627th Field Hospital who won a gift basket and is currently expecting her first child. “I had no idea about some of the programs that Army Community Service or the Fire Department has, like car seats checks and how to do it right.”
Along with first-time parents, families with small children also attended to learn about offerings from ACS and gain parenting advice from the event’s guest speaker, Dr. Marianne Neifert aka “Dr. Mom.”
A renowned pediatrician, breastfeeding expert and author, Neifert helped bring her advice on parenting small children to attendees.
“One of my favorite sayings is to stop trying to improve your child and focus on improving your relationship with your child” said Neifert, who spoke twice to the large audience of attendees. “The bond is the most important thing.”
Along with parenting support, the event offered specialists speaking one-on-one with attendees about the importance of infant CPR, child immunizations, infant swaddling and postpartum care.
“We were surprised actually how many people are here and all the offerings they have,” said Maj. Matthew Painter, assigned to 1st Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, who attended with his wife, Sharon, and their second child born last month at Evans ACH, Genevieve.
Place said she hopes to create more awareness and have more vendors who can further educate military families at next year’s Baby Expo thanks to the amount of positive feedback. Her team of representatives from the MPBC, Mother Baby Unit, Department of Pediatrics, Lactation Services and OB-GYN, were on hand to meet with soon-to-be parents to discuss what to expect before and after the arrival of their newborn.
“I’m a first-time mom so I’m trying to see how everything works and what I can do to make sure I’m a good mom,” said Sgt. Ashley Krempasky, a military police Soldier assigned to 759th Military Police Battalion, who is expecting a girl. “Especially for first time moms, it’s a good thing to have just because you probably don’t know where you’re at, where to start or what to expect. Every little bit of information helps.”
Pfc. Quanisa Fairweather, a unit supply specialist with 3rd Armored Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, watches a demonstration on infant safety during the Fort Carson 2018 Baby Expo at the William “Bill” Reed Special Events Center May 16, 2018. Fairweather is currently expecting a boy in two weeks. (Photo by Jeanine Mezei)
Anna McGrew, a labor and delivery nurse at the Mountain Post Birthing Center (MPBC) at Evans Army Community Hospital, speaks with Soldiers at the Fort Carson 2018 Baby Expo at the William “Bill” Reed Special Events Center on May 16, 2018. Representatives from the MPBC were on hand to discuss what to expect before and after the birth of a newborn. (Photo by Jeanine Mezei)