TENAFLY, N.J. -- Two borough dads are keeping kids healthy in northeast Bergen County -- one smoothie at a time -- through their Sips & Kicks.
Andy Pada and Chad Dictenberg launched the venture 2½ years ago.
"The goal at the time was to make smoothies for our kids," Pada said. "My son and his best friend both liked pizza, mac and cheese and didn’t eat fruit or vegetables."
They started off with a green smoothie filled with kale, pineapple, mango, banana, water and ice.
It was an instant hit.
"My son had two 10-ounce cups in five minutes," Pada said.
The dads began creating with different combinations and flavors.
"Chad is the smoothie doctor," Pada said. "He used to live in L.A. and worked in a restaurant where he made smoothies."
Before long, parents were asking for smoothies for their own kids. Tenafly school officials sought them out for the Nutrition Option in the lunch program.
Sips & Kicks now offers smoothies in Tenafly, Cresskill, and Closter.
Demarest and Alpine are joining this winter.
Pada and Dictenberg also offer smoothies for free to low-income families.
The smoothies were offered for free over the summer to students at John Grieco Elementary School in Englewood.
"Kids in affluent neighborhoods have the option to eat healthier already, so we are in the process of making a non profit program," Pada said.
The second half of the organization, the Kick portion, is to keep youngsters active.
"We want to work with the local MLS (Major League Soccer) teams and create free soccer training programs for the kids," Pada said.
They're created a "Red Bull" smoothie for that team's players.
"This is a lifestyle for the kids -- to make healthy choices, both nutritionally and physically," Pada said.
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