Mansfield residents are ready to come out and play – and the parks and recreation department wants to reward them for it.
Last year, the Mansfield Parks & Recreation Department asked residents to put down their game controllers and step away from their televisions to go outside and play for 100 hours. And dozens of families did.
This year, hundreds are participating in the parks department’s 100 Hours of Play.
“We have about three times more people participating,” said Ann Beck, marketing and communications manager for the Mansfield Parks & Recreation Department. “At every event, we are gaining new people. We had about 500 at the kick-off party and about 400 at Truckapalooza. We have big crowds and people participating. People from last year who participated are bound and determined to get 100 hours this year. We are going and blowing and having so much fun.”
The parks department has events scheduled every Thursday to help people reach their 100-hour goal, from playing like kids did in the 1800s at the Man House Museum to shark week at the splash pad. And there will be even more pop-up events that they will announce on Facebook and Instagram.
Parents can log their hours at https://www.mansfieldtexas.
“Everybody who signs up gets a badge,” Beck said. “They can earn pins for different things, if they hit 50 hours or bring a friend. Every week we do a drawing. Everybody who hits 100 hours gets a special prize pack. Those who hit the most hours get a big prize pack. Last year we were able to give Hawaiian Falls tickets.
“By the end of the summer last year, we had almost 5,000 hours logged,” Beck said. “We are in our third week and we have over 6,000 hours logged.”
The events and 100-hours goal are open to everyone, Beck said. All events are free.
“They don’t have to be Mansfield residents or a certain age,” she said.
“We had entire families for pickleball,” Beck said. “We had grandparents out there. I was surprised how many little kids were out there who really got into it.”
July is going to be big, Beck promises, because it is Parks & Recreation Month.
“We are going to have puppies and painting with the arts commission and the shelter bringing shelter dogs to The LOT,” she said. “You get to paint and play with dogs. July 28 is the end of the program and a joint ending party with the library at the Mansfield Activities Center.”
The idea is to get people outside and enjoying the parks, and enjoying being together,” Beck said.
“I don’t think anybody needs to be told how important it is to get away from the screen,” she said. “It’s always good to get out and play and spend time together. It’s usually not the big moments, it’s the little ones, taking a picnic or swinging on the swing sets. It doesn’t take a lot of money, just spend time together.”
For more information about 100 Hours of Play, go to https://www.mansfieldtexas.