Home Living Extension Update from Megan Burda: Kick-Off Summer Fun

Extension Update from Megan Burda: Kick-Off Summer Fun


Kick-Off Summer Fun

For many families, Memorial Day weekend marks the “official” start to summer. While you are making social plans for your family be sure to keep safety in mind. Here are a few tips to make your summer kick-off safe and enjoyable.

Grilling Safety:

Keep it clean.

Wash hands with soap and warm water for at least 20 seconds before and after handling food. If you’re eating where there’s no source of clean water, bring water, soap, and paper towels or have disposable wipes or hand sanitizer available.

Marinate food in the refrigerator.

Don’t marinate on the counter—marinate in the refrigerator. If you want to use marinade as a sauce on cooked food, save a separate portion in the refrigerator. Do not reuse marinade that contacted raw meat, poultry, or seafood on cooked food unless you bring it to a boil first

Keep raw food separate.

Keep your barbecue safe by keeping raw meat, poultry, and seafood in a separate cooler or securely wrapped at the bottom of a cooler. Don’t use a plate or utensils that previously held raw meat, poultry, or seafood for anything else unless you wash them first in hot, soapy water. Have a clean platter and utensils ready at grill-side for serving.

Seeing isn’t believing.

Many assume that if a hamburger is brown in the middle, it’s done. Looking only at the color and texture of food is not enough—you have to use a food thermometer to be sure. According to USDA research, 1 out of every 4 hamburgers turns brown before it reaches a safe internal temperature. The only safe way to know if meat, poultry, and egg dishes are “done” is to use a food thermometer. When a hamburger is cooked to 160 degrees Fahrenheit as measured with a food thermometer, it is both safe and delicious!

Keep hot food hot and cold food cold.

Keep hot food at 140 F or above until served. Keep cooked meats hot by setting them to the side of the grill, or wrapped well in an insulated container. Keep cold food at 40 F or below until served. Keep cold perishable food in a cooler until serving time, out of direct sun, and avoid opening the lid often.

Swimming Safety:

It is important to constantly supervise children when they are near water. Never leave a young child unattended near water, and do not trust a child’s life to another child; teach children to always ask permission to go near water. Avoid distractions when supervising children around water. Other swimming safety tips from the American Red Cross include:

  • Swim in designated areas supervised by lifeguards.
  • Always swim with a buddy; do not allow anyone to swim alone.
  • Have young children or inexperienced swimmers wear U.S. Coast Guard-approved life jackets around water, but do not rely on life jackets alone.
  • Have appropriate equipment, such as reaching or throwing equipment, a cell phone, life jackets and a first aid kit.
  • Know how and when to call 9-1-1 or the local emergency number.

No matter what you are planning for the holiday weekend, always have a safety plan. Say “hello” to summer and enjoy time your family!

(Resources:  Summer Grilling and Food Safety, Lisa Franzen-Castle, RD, PhD, Nutrition Specialist UNL Panhandle Research & Extension Center. (food.unl.edu); American Red Cross)

Upcoming Events

Drive 4 UR Community Event

Saturday, June 3, 2017

9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Fairgrounds

Janssen Ford of York is hosting a fundraising event for York County 4-H.

Come out to the Lively Livestock Show and test drive a Ford vehicle (with no obligation to buy). For every person that drives a vehicle, York County 4-H will receive a $20 donation from Ford.



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