To ensure that kids across the country get active and playful, national non-profit KaBOOM! is kicking-off the second annual KaBOOM! Play Days presented by Mott's. KaBOOM! Play Days encourage communities to come together for fun activities and to improve local parks and playgrounds. KaBOOM! Play Days run from September 18 - September 26, but event planning starts now.
KaBOOM! is the national non-profit dedicated to saving play, and one of the ways it does that is through its annual community-hosted KaBOOM! Play Days. Last year, 1,254 communities in every U.S state and on every continent (yes, even Antarctica) hosted a KaBOOM! Play Day. More than 316,000 people participated in events, and afterwards, participants cast more than 197,000 votes for their favorite Play Day.
The KaBOOM! Play Day program is presented by Mott's and made possible by the ongoing philanthropic support of the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, as well as NFL PLAY 60. Operational support for the KaBOOM! Play Day program provided by National Environmental Education Foundation and Boys and Girls Clubs of America. Together with KaBOOM!, these organizations are working together to sign up thousands of communities to host events that support the importance of play in children's lives.
Starting today, consumers can visit www.kaboom.org/playday to plan a Play Day in their community. Once there, users will be able to self-organize, recruit volunteers, invite attendees and receive event planning help. The online planner also contains the rules of classic games, such as Kick the Can, Red Rover, Red Light-Green Light, and Four Square, many of which are disappearing from children's lives. The website gives communities everything they need to host a great Play Day. Then, once the events are over, deserving Play Day communities with the best improvement projects will be eligible for $25,000 in grants to help them further improve their local park or playground.
Why are Play Days important?
- Almost 60% of all kids don't have a playground within walking distance of their home. And that number goes up to almost 70% in low-income areas.
- Children today spend less time playing outdoors than any previous generation and are spending an average of four hours a day viewing electronic media.
- Lack of play is directly linked to increased childhood obesity -- one of the main issues facing children today.
- Play enhances children's learning readiness, learning behaviors, and problem- solving skills. They're also happier and better able to get along with others.
By hosting a KaBOOM! Play Day, communities will not only ensure that their children get out and play for an afternoon, but they will help make their local park or playground an inviting place, where families can spend time together for years to come.