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Boys & Girls Clubs, SafeLawns Find Common Ground

The popular Finnish game Molkky was a big hit with the crowd at the Boys & Girls Clubs of America national convention in San Diego on Friday.

The popular Finnish game Molkky was a big hit with the crowd at the Boys & Girls Clubs of America national convention in San Diego on Friday.

Calling the Boys & Girls Clubs of America attendees inspirational community leaders, SafeLawns founder Paul Tukey challenged the organization to help keep communities across the nation pesticide free wherever children play.

“I want you to know about the Child Safe Playing Fields Act that keeps toxic weed and insect killers off playgrounds and playing fields statewide in New York,” said Tukey, who was selected as a keynote presenter, along with co-author Victoria Rowell, at the Boys & Girls Clubs 106th annual convention held in San Diego last Wednesday through Friday. “Connecticut and New York are the only two states to have that sort of protection in place. With your help, we can — and should — extend that protection to the other 48 states.”

Tukey and Rowell’s primary message to the audience of club directors and staff focused on their new book, Tag, Toss & Run and SafeLawns’ new national campaign titled “Lawn Games for Life.”

Actress and co-author Victoria Rowell shared inspirational stories of her childhood in Maine and Massachusetts, much of which she said was spent outdoors playing the old-fashioned games in her book, Tag, Toss & Run.

Actress and co-author Victoria Rowell shared inspirational stories of her childhood in Maine and Massachusetts, much of which she said was spent outdoors playing the old-fashioned games in her book, Tag, Toss & Run.

“Playing these games teaches a set of life skills that you never get from computer games,” said Rowell, who detailed her own childhood in her best-selling 2007 memoir titled The Women Who Raised Me. She credited her experiences at the Boys & Girls Clubs of Massachusetts for helping build a life foundation that later led to leading roles in numerous television and movie projects, including The Young & the Restless, Diagnosis: Murder and Dumb and Dumber.

Near the conclusion of their talk the authors share some of their favorite games from their book, which was released on March 27. Boys & Girls Club directors enthusiastically competed in old-fashioned wheelbarrow races, as well as hoop trundling played with wooden hoops crafted by the Cooperman Company of Bellows Falls, Vt.

SafeLawns founder Paul Tukey demonstrates hoop trundling for the audience.

SafeLawns founder Paul Tukey demonstrates hoop trundling for the audience.

Boys & Girls Club directors caught on quickly with hoop trundling, a racing game that dates back thousands of years.

Boys & Girls Club directors caught on quickly with hoop trundling, a racing game that dates back thousands of years.

“It was very inspirational,” said Wayne B. Moss, senior director of the Sports, Fitness & Recreation Program for the Boys & Girls Clubs. “It’s clear we share a lot of common ground in our message to get children playing again.”

About The Author

Paul Tukey

An international leader of the green movement, Mr. Tukey is a journalist, author, filmmaker, TV host, activist and award-winning public speaker, who is widely recognized as North America's leading advocate for landscape sustainability and toxic pesticide reduction strategies.

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