The Cover Art is In: Here’s the Next Book
Calendar Filling Fast for New Lawn Games for Life Tour & Book Signings
Although our next book, co-authored with actress Victoria Rowell, is still at the printer and won’t be unveiled until the Philadelphia Flower Show and numerous other venues in March, the official cover was released by the publisher today. Titled Tag, Toss & Run, the book is a culmination of several years of planning in advance of next year’s 40th anniversary of the first video game.
Since Pong came out in 1972, the impact of all that sedentary time in front of TV and computer screens has had a profound impact on children — who are now far more likely to be obese, suffer from attention deficit disorders and other physiological and psychological maladies. Before we relegate an old-fashioned outdoor childhood to distant memory, both Victoria and I thought we needed to get this book and our campaign, Lawn Games for Life, out in the public consciousness.
Like I tell everyone, we had a blast re-living our childhoods in writing this book. We think the readers — many who will be learning some of these games for the first time — will love it, too. All the classic games are in there, the various forms of tag, hide ‘n seek, along with Bocce, Croquet and Badminton. But we unearthed a bunch of new-to-us games, too, like Kubb from Norway and Molkky from Finland.
What was your favorite game? We’ve already played run through that exercise with a local radio station; people were calling in from their cars with nostalgic childhood stories. With 40 games and numerous other variations included in the pages from Storey/Workman Publishers, chances are you’ll find that blast from your past.
Behind the scenes we’re developing an interactive web site, a set of how-to-play-the-games videos, along with plans for outdoor “Lawn-A-Thon” family festivals and all sorts of learning information for schools, daycare centers and parents to share with the children in their care. We’re partnering with organizations like the nPlay Foundation and championing the work of the International Play Association, which is proactively trying to restore recess to the 60 percent of U.S. schools that no longer allow the students to get outside to play each day. We’ve already begun scheduling a tour that will take us across the country and probably around the world before we’re through.
This work represents a bit of a change of focus for me and for SafeLawns, since we’re leading this new campaign with the message of exercise and outdoor activity. But once children do get outside to play, we’ll be reminding folks that the grass beneath the games should be pesticide and toxin free — since our kids will be rolling around in what should be a safe environment. Don’t just grow a chemical lawn for aesthetics, in other words, but rather USE IT to have fun and reconnect with your family.
I only wish the book could be out for the holiday season, but the decision was made long ago to have it out in time for the spring playing season instead. So stay tuned. We’ll have lots of updates in the weeks and months ahead. If your organization is interested in a talk or a signing, either with Victoria, myself or both, just let us know. The calendar is filling up fast.