BOY SCOUTS OF AMERICA CELEBRATES RECREATION AND PARKS MONTH - JULY 2005

NEWS RELEASE

BOY SCOUTS OF AMERICA CELEBRATES RECREATION AND PARKS MONTH - JULY 2005

Since 1985, the National Recreation and Park Association has designated the month of July as Recreation and Parks Month. Recreation facilities and parks across the country annually use July to celebrate the kickoff of summer programming as well as a time to pull their communities together to volunteer, get involved in great outdoor physical activities, and advocate for parks and recreation.

Research shows that 75 percent of Americans live within two miles of a public park or recreation facility. And, more than 75 percent of the population takes advantage of their local parks and recreation facilities; this amounts to a staggering 192 million people visiting annually.

The Boy Scouts of America has valued the outdoors for more than 95 years. Each year, more than 40,000 youth attend more than 400 Scout camps nationwide. A Harris Interactive study* conducted in 2001 revealed that Boy Scout summer camps have a dramatic influence on the lives of young people who attend them. Some of the benefits to young men include increasing self-confidence, improving decision-making abilities, and learning conflict resolution.

"When youth attend Scout camp, they grow by learning to solve problems with their peers, discovering new skills, and interacting with positive adult mentors," says Roy L. Williams, Chief Scout Executive of the Boy Scouts of America. Camp activities are designed to encourage Scouts to work and play together, learn social skills, and understand the benefits of operating as a team. In addition, these activities give youth the opportunity to escape from the rigors of everyday life and reflect on the importance of their faith traditions and personal values.

For more information on Recreation and Parks Month, log on to www.nrpa.org.

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The National Recreation and Park Association is a national not-for-profit organization dedicated to advancing park, recreation, and conservation efforts that enhance quality of life for all people. Through its network of more than 19,000 recreation and park professionals and citizens, NRPA encourages the promotion of healthy lifestyles, recreation initiatives, and conservation of natural and cultural resources.

* The full results of this study can be viewed on the BSA Web site: old.scouting.org/media/research/02-448.pdf.