play / 2015

Free pLAy for all L.A.

Idea submitted in the My LA2050 Maker Challenge by Knucklebones

We want to create a traveling play program in communities across L.A. utilizing parks, community centers and other public spaces to increase awareness, health, fitness and fun! We’ll create the pLAy Bus, fill it with athletically inspired equipment, travel each weekend to new a location (park, parking lot, gymnasium, etc.) in a different community/area/district/town throughout L.A. County, unload the equipment, set up in the space provided and engage the greater community in hours of free play!


In what areas of Los Angeles will you be directly working?

  • Central LA
  • East LA
  • San Gabriel Valley
  • San Fernando Valley
  • South LA
  • Westside
  • South Bay
  • Antelope Valley
  • County of Los Angeles
  • City of Los Angeles
  • LAUSD
  • Throughout all of L.A. County and, if possible, beyond.

How do you plan to use these resources to make change?

  • Conduct research
  • Engage residents and stakeholders
  • Implement a pilot or new project
  • Expand a pilot or a program
  • Mobilize for systems change
  • Advocate with policymakers and leaders
  • Implement and track policy
  • Provide healthy lifestyle choices

How will your proposal improve the following “Play” metrics?

  • Access to open space and park facilities
  • Number of children enrolled in afterschool programs
  • Per capita crime rates
  • Percentage of residents that feel safe in their neighborhoods
  • Attendance at major league sporting events
  • Residents within 1⁄4 mile of a park (Dream Metric)
  • Number of residents with easy access to a “vibrant” park (Dream Metric)
  • Number of parks with intergenerational play opportunities (Dream Metric)
  • Number (and quality) of informal spaces for play (Dream Metric)

Describe in greater detail how you will make LA the best place to play.

We will make L.A. the best place to play by traveling to every community/area/district/town to provide residents/friends/visitors an opportunity to engage in hours of free community play. Whether a park/field/parking lot/gymnasium/etc. we’ll set up a vast array of athletically inspired play equipment and encourage everyone to be physically active, have fun, make new friends and build a bigger community network. According to the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, “communities with … safe places to play are healthier than those that don’t.” The pLAy Bus will allow communities to gather together to play and experience their public space like never before. At each stop of the pLAy Bus we’ll also have partners with health services (Vision to Learn, community health organizations, etc.) to provide free health screenings and work with community organizations (Rotary Clubs, Whole Foods, Etc.) to provide additional support and services.

Please explain how you will evaluate your work.

Although there is no measure for the smiles and laughs that will be had by the participants, we plan on asking participants to take a survey before leaving. Our questions will be based around our primary objectives: •What were your favorite games/activities? •How long did you stay and play? Did you interact with people outside of the group you can with? •Had you been to this particular space before (park, school, community center)? •Do you plan on returning now that you been to this space? •Did you enjoy the activities provided by the Play Bus? •Would you return to a Play Bus event? •What was your favorite part of the day?

Finally, we will collaborate with community/area/district/town official government offices & health initiatives along with the UCLA Center for World Health to help figure out what activities/services/organizations the community would love to implement. We’ll conduct this research: Pre Event, Time of Event and Post Event.

How can the LA2050 community and other stakeholders help your proposal succeed?

  • Money (financial capital)
  • Volunteers/staff (human capital)
  • Publicity/awareness (social capital)
  • Infrastructure (building/space/vehicles, etc.)
  • Community outreach
  • Network/relationship support