Friday, June 20, 2008

Athletic Parents Sought for Annual Pledge Competition to Raise Money for the Life is good Kids Foundation

World’s Greatest Backyard Athlete to be Crowned at Life is good® Festival July 19 on Boston Common
It may be too late to qualify for the Olympic games in Beijing but there is still time to take the field for a storied athletic competition. The World’s Greatest Backyard Athlete competition will once again be the centerpiece event at the annual Life is good Festival on Saturday, July 19 on Boston Common.
More than 100 individuals will compete in this friendly, low-key competition for the coveted title while raising funds for the Life is good Kids Foundation. Proceeds from this year’s festival will be directed by the foundation to Project Joy, a Boston-based non-profit organization whose mission is to use the healing power of play to transform children impacted by violence, poverty and loss into healthy and joyful players in the game of life.
The pledge-driven competition, sponsored by Harvard Pilgrim Health Care, features men and women putting their skills to the test through a number of old-fashioned backyard games including Frisbee toss, bocce, watermelon seed spitting, and Wiffle Ball Homerun Derby. Competing athletes commit to raise at least $1,000 for the Life is good Kids Foundation. The top fundraiser will win a three night stay at the Four Points by Sheraton Palmas del Mar Resort in Puerto Rico. To sign up for the World’s Greatest Backyard Athlete competition, visit the Life is good® website at
“Our Backyard Athlete competition is great fun for the athletes and the crowds that cheer them on, and it’s backed by a serious purpose,” said Bert Jacobs, Chief Executive Optimist for Life is good. “The World’s Greatest Backyard Athlete Competition gives each athlete a day of smiles along with the deep satisfaction of raising major funds for an organization that works to bring joy back into the lives of children in need. Even if you don’t end up with the title, everyone wins in this competition.”

2008 Life is good Festival
The Life is good Festival brings the nostalgia of an old-fashioned American picnic to the heart of Boston. The classic outdoor summer bash will feature great traditional games and activities. The festival will be divided into several “villages”:
* The Olympic Village, sponsored by Harvard Pilgrim Health Care, will be the site of the 2008 World’s Greatest Backyard Athlete competition.
* Jaketown, sponsored by Dick’s Sporting Goods, features familiar games aplenty, including football, lacrosse, speed pitch, soccer kick, Frisbee toss, basketball, tug-o’-war, volleyball, and much more.
* Chillville, sponsored by Four Points® by Sheraton and the perfect cool-down spot between physical activities, showcases arts and crafts, face painting, and an entertaining kids stage.
* The Joy Zone features cooperative kids’ games hosted by Project Joy, including its amazing multi-colored 50-foot parachute.
* Music & Memories: The festival will also feature classic backyard food and great live music from the Main Stage, sponsored by 93.7 MIKE FM, with headliner Robert Randolph.
The Life is good® Festival is produced in partnership with the Boston Parks and Recreation Department.
Sponsors for the 2008 Life is good® Festival include Harvard Pilgrim Health Care, Dick’s Sporting Goods, Newland Communities, SAP, Four Points® by Sheraton, Verizon Wireless, Citizens Bank, and UPS.
Media sponsors include 93.7 MIKE FM,, The Improper Bostonian,, & Bay State Parent.

About Life is good, Inc.®: Life is good®, based in Boston, MA, spreads good vibes through its colorful collection of apparel and accessories, and the contagious grin of Jake, its optimistic cultural hero. For more information on Life is good®, please visit

About the Life is good Kids Foundation: The Life is good Kids Foundation supports extraordinary charities that creat a lasting positive impact on children facing unfair challenges, including the trauma of violence and poverty. The Foundation receives its principal financial support from the public via the charitable fundraising festivals conducted by Life is good, Inc. This year eighteen different festivals will be held in fourteen different states nationwide. 100% of funds raised from these festivals is distributed to 501 C (3) non-profit organizations supporting children in need.

About Boston Parks and Recreation Department: As caretaker of the city’s open space, the Boston Parks and Recreation Department (BPRD) oversees 2,200 acres of parkland, including 215 parks and playgrounds, 65 squares, urban woodlands and street trees, three active cemeteries, 16 historic burying grounds, and two golf courses. In addition to maintaining the historic integrity of such famous landmarks as Boston Common, The Public Garden, and other parks comprising Frederick Law Olmsted’s Emerald Necklace, the Department services and upgrades facilities ranging from neighborhood tot lots to the 527-acre Franklin Park. The Department historically has offered a wide variety of recreation programs, including sports and tournaments, special events, and concerts designed to bring people into the parks.

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