Recreation Management - Ideas and Solutions for Recreation, Sports & Fitness Facility Managers

Feature Story

January 2019


Partnership Aims to Expand Play Opportunities

Recent Rec Report Feature Stories

Grant Funds Help Educate Pool Operators - January 2019

NFL Foundation Grants Boost Local Football Fields - January 2019

Leaders Recognized for Advancing Outdoor Recreation - January 2019

Goldfish Swim School Sponsors USA Swimming Foundation - December 2018

Physical Activity for Kids Gets Low Grade - December 2018

New Law Helps Sports Medicine Professionals & Athletes - December 2018

Outdoor Recreation Adds Billions to U.S. Economy - November 2018

Nearly $1 Million in Pool Grants Awarded - November 2018

Report: One in Four Americans Use a Health Club - November 2018

New Active Transportation Program Aims to Boost Health & Environment - November 2018

Foundation Celebrates Sports Innovations - October 2018

Grant Awarded to Chattanooga Nature Play Area - October 2018

Obesity Continues to Challenge America's Health - October 2018

Grant Program Funds Keep America Beautiful Initiatives - October 2018

Nation's Pediatricians Emphasize Power of Play - October 2018

Step Into Swim Continues to Create New Swimmers - September 2018

Pickleball Benefits Older Adults - September 2018

NSPF Endorses MAHC Adoption - September 2018

Cities Spend More on Public Parks in 2018 - September 2018

Be Ready for Back-to-School Sports - August 2018

NRPA, Pool Safely Partner on Water & Recreation Safety - August 2018

States Make Progress Toward Active Transportation - August 2018

IHRSA Briefing Looks at Club Employees vs. Contractors - August 2018

ACSM & Wellcoaches Expand Offerings for Fitness Pros - July 2018

Grants Help Local Trail Projects - July 2018

Grant to Boost Meals & Nutrition for Kids - July 2018

Trust for Public Land Releases ParkServe Database - July 2018

CPSC Asks for Vigilance to Prevent Child Drowning - July 2018

TPL Earns NEA Grant to Explore Creative Placemaking - June 2018

High Visa Denial Rates Could Affect Pools - June 2018

Make a Splash Campaign Teaches Millions to Swim - June 2018

Communities Can Earn Grants for Dog Park Development - June 2018

National Golf Day Celebrates Green Practices - May 2018

YMCA Recognized for Diversity - May 2018

Americans Support Pollinator Health, And Parks Can Help - May 2018

How to Encourage Play—Everywhere! - April 2018

Partnership, Grants to Boost Mountain Bike Trail Development - April 2018

Parks & Recreation Supports More Than 1.1 Million Jobs - April 2018

Club Pilates Grows With New Training Facility - April 2018

IHRSA Sees Positive Growth for Fitness Pros - April 2018

Denver's Freedom Park Wins Grant for Public Art - March 2018

NSPF, Counsilman-Hunsaker Partner to Create App for Aquatic Facility Managers - March 2018

More Than 330 Million Recreation Visits Recorded in 2017 for National Park System - March 2018

Study Shows Economic Benefits of the Great Outdoors - March 2018

Parks for Inclusion Initiative Aims to Expand Reach to All Americans - February 2018

SHAPE America, NFL & Partners Collaborate on Training for Health & P.E. Educators - February 2018

CPSC Offers $1.1 Million in Pool Safely Grants - February 2018

Bipartisan PHIT Act Could Boost America's Wellness - February 2018

China Plant Shutdowns May Affect Pool Operations & Budgets - January 2018

Arlington County 'Pulls Together' to Remove Invasive Plants - January 2018

Youth Sports Participation Increases for Underserved Kids - January 2018

Study: Physical Activity Boosts Learning Time - January 2018

By Dave Ramont

KaBOOM! is a nonprofit organization with a mission of providing all children with fun, safe places to play—especially those kids living in poverty. They believe that there’s a play deficit in America, pointing out that only one In four kids in the United States are getting the recommended daily amount of physical activity. They also feel that play is an equity issue; many kids have no safe places to play, and under-resourced schools have had to cut physical education and recess. Not to mention that kids from all backgrounds are simply getting too much screen time.

Recently, KaBOOM! and the CarMax Foundation announced a partnership renewal with the goal of bringing innovative play opportunities to another 170,000 kids by the end of 2021. The CarMax Foundation is pledging an additional investment of $4.4 million to assist KaBOOM! in transforming the future of play for those kids who need it most. A new program that will invest in innovation—including the research and development of new play experiences—will also be funded by the CarMax Foundation.

James Siegal, CEO of KaBOOM!, said they’re thrilled to continue their partnership with the CarMax Foundation for another three years. “The CarMax Foundation is a powerful champion for kids across America, creating wonderful opportunities for kids in need of play. The commitment and enthusiasm of CarMax associates is unsurpassed, and great things happen when they roll up their sleeves as volunteers to create playspaces in the communities where they live, work and play.”

The CarMax Foundation and KaBOOM! look to create 68 new playspaces, including 24 playgrounds, beginning in January 2019. Other goals include the continuation of support for military communities using grants during a Military Week of Play; providing spaces for all kids to play sports by investing in sports courts, a new offering from KaBOOM!; and deploying Rigamajigs, KaBOOM!’s building kits, which are a collection of wooden planks, nuts, bolts, wheels, pulleys and rope. These kits promote problem-solving skills and creative thinking through hands-on free play.

The two groups also plan to team up on research and development projects to innovate play for the future, particularly for kids from underserved and economically-challenged communities. “Our associates across the country will impact countless families by encouraging kids to be creative and curious through play,” said Matt Aman, president of the CarMax Foundation. “Expanding our partnership with KaBOOM! with a renewed focus on innovation is a natural fit for our transformational culture.”

KaBOOM! pairs funding partners with under-resourced communities who join together to build safe playgrounds. They also provide mobile playgrounds that can move from site to site, helping cities to transform everyday spaces like sidewalks, vacant lots and bus stops into great spaces for play. To date KaBOOM! has built more than 3,000 playgrounds, built or improved more than 17,000 playspaces and engaged more than 1.5 million volunteers, serving more than 9 million kids.