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‘Parks and Rec’ Star Adam Scott Is Cleaning Up Actual Parks for Kids

Leslie Knope would definitely approve.

Actor Adam Scott played Ben Wyatt for five seasons on Parks and Recreation and tried to make Pawnee (and later the State of Indiana) a better place. He fixed budgets, ran campaigns, managed the city of Pawnee and even tried to improve the image of unsavory candy corporation Sweetum’s. Now, Scott, a father of two, is channeling some of Wyatt’s no-nonsense attitude to raise awareness around a very important issue.

Kids spend a lot of time running around on playing fields, which are sprayed with toxic pesticides like glyphosate, dicamba, 2, 4-D. That’s horrifying. Scott partnered with Stonyfield Organic yogurt to tell parents about this problem and get toxic pesticides kicked off the playing fields in the PlayFree campaign. Stonyfield has donated more than a million dollars to help local parks and fields throw out their pesticides and switch to organic ground management.

“The federal agencies in charge of protecting people – kids especially – from dangers like these toxic persistent pesticides are being dismantled day by day,” Scott says. “It’s outrageous that we even have to be concerned with things like this – as parents, we all have enough to worry about. So when Stonyfield approached me about the PlayFree campaign I was happy to do what I can to make other parents aware, and encourage them to get involved and make a difference in their own communities.”

In a video, Scott explains to a bunch of unhappy children the brand new rules for soccer with that signature dry humor that made Wyatt such a beloved character on Parks and Rec. To keep these kids safe from pesticides, they have to enter the “Washdome” if they touch the grass and then touch their faces. The soccer ball also has to be changed out every 20 yards with a new “super dope” ball.

Pesticides on playing fields are now another thing parents need to worry about when they watch their kids play sports, and Scott thinks that’s the most difficult aspect of being a dad.

“For me, I think the hardest thing is the seemingly constant worry – am I doing enough, making the right decisions for the kids, etc,” Scott says. “That’s something that really struck me when I got involved with Stonyfield. I couldn’t believe what I was hearing about pesticides being sprayed on our fields and public spaces, and that I didn’t know a thing about it. I’m happy I do now, and hope other parents take notice.”