BAKER — Local families are invited to the inaugural Family Health Day, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. July 27 at the Baker Heritage Museum & Cultural Center, 1606 Main St., Baker.

The museum is hosting the event in conjunction with Mary Bird Perkins — Our Lady of the Lake Cancer Center to help save lives through early detection while providing fun for the whole family. In addition to cancer and other health screenings, the event will include music, refreshments, children’s activities, cooking demonstrations and more.

Family Health Day is a free health event that includes breast, prostate and colorectal cancer screenings, food, children’s activities and entertainment for the entire family. All screenings are available to those who have not been screened for cancer in the past 12 months.

The Baker Heritage Museum offers a number of community resources, including tools for educators and exhibits designed to communicate, display and interpret the rich history of the region.

“In addition to offering our traditional services, the Baker Heritage Museum wants to do even more. We want to be a part of helping advance the health and wellbeing of our community,” said museum director Cynthia Grimes. “Through this partnership with Mary Bird Perkins — Our Lady of the Lake Cancer Center, we want to help impact our area’s legacy by infusing healthy living into the fabric of the community.”

To speak to the importance of early detection, several people will be on hand, including Baker Mayor Darnell Waites, a prostate cancer survivor, and Lynette Matusicky and Betty Dunn, breast cancer survivors.

Johnnay Benjamin, director of early detection and education for the cancer center, says it partners with organizations throughout southeast Louisiana to implement events such as Family Health Day.

“The relaxed, family-friendly environment takes some of the fear out of cancer education and early detection,” Benjamin said. “Families can come out, have some food, enjoy some together time and take part in activities that can be potentially lifesaving.”

While the focus of Family Day will focus on cancer education and early detection, the event goes beyond this one disease and addresses other health problems impacting the region’s residents. In addition to cancer, mortality rates continue to soar as a result of conditions such as high blood pressure, obesity and diabetes, which can all be linked to lack of physical activity. To help address these issues, blood pressure and glucose checks, as well as healthy diet information and cooking demonstrations will be offered.

For information about this event and other upcoming screenings, visit