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05/05/2015
Play Unplugged is in St. George

ST. GEORGE, UT - May 05, 2015 - The Southwest Utah Public Health Department proudly announces it is combining forces with Play Unplugged to promote a healthy lifestyle, reduce teenage obesity and help fight screen addictions which are on the rise among teenagers. To accomplish this, The Southwest Utah Public Health Department will be a main sponsor of the Play Unplugged programs in St. George, Cedar City and Kanab, Utah this summer.

Play Unplugged is a program designed to help kids overcome what clinical professionals call 'screen addictions' which are spending an inordinate amount of free time on computers, watching TV or video gaming. Play Unplugged helps kids and parents return to 'real play' activities such as hiking, fishing and other active pastimes during the summer months when teenagers are prone to gain weight because of the sedentary lifestyle that often comes with lengthy gaming times and watching lots of television.

"We are very excited to be partnering with The Southwest Utah Public Health Department where together we can and will help kids get more active during the summer," said Play Unplugged President Erik Rowland. "Play Unplugged is easy to get involved in and is completely free for all kids and families in the Cedar City, St. George and Kanab areas and it has proven results in helping kids avoid spending lengthy times in front of computers or the television and returning them to real play activities."

Aimed at helping kids reduce their screen time by offering incentives to get outside and exercise, Play Unplugged is now in its third year in some Utah cities and enjoying a second successful year in Cedar City, Utah. The cities of Kanab and St. George are seeing more excitement from kids and gaining support from local families and the businesses that sponsor the Play Unplugged Brag Badges which kids can earn Play Unplugged is a totally free program for families to participate in once kids register online.

"The idea is revolutionary in offering a community a free program for all kids to join in where they earn the Play Unplugged collectable Brag Badges," said Play Unplugged Founder Corbin Gordon. "The kids do activities such as hiking, bug catching or even washing the family car to earn cool and colorful Brag Badges which kids collect during the summer months. This makes it easy for parents to always have summer activities ready that kids can easily do and this helps reduce a child's screen time and get them outdoors when studies have shown that summers are the times most kids gain weight."

The Southwest Utah Public Health Department understands how important it is for kids to participate in real play activities like the ones Play Unplugged provides and our organization is very excited and proud to help kids and families be reintroduced to summer outdoor pastimes and recreation.

Play Unplugged began three summers ago in Heber City, Utah when two fathers who were concerned about their kids screen time decided to create a model in which local businesses could receive an increase in foot traffic while simultaneously helping kids get out and play. Their efforts were rewarded with a successful program in their home town and which now has spread to other Utah cities such as Vernal, Springville, Draper and Spanish Fork which offers over 100 Brag Badges during the summer.

"Play Unplugged truly works in getting kids unplugged from the TV or video gaming consoles and motivates them to get outside and discover new activities," adds Rowland. "If you believe that your child needs to reduce their screen time, we would highly recommend you get them involved and the best part is that because of sponsors like The Southwest Utah Public Health Department, Play Unplugged is free for any and all kids to participate in this summer in these communities."

If you are interested in knowing more about Play Unplugged, enrolling your kids in this free summer program, or you are a business who wishes to sponsor a Brag Badge, you can contact Play Unplugged at (435) 625-1289 or on the Internet at: www.weplayunplugged.com