Gordon in the News: last updated 06/13/2011

Learning to Play? Documentary Film "Play Again" to be Shown at Gordon and Salem Film Festival

March 2, 2011

WENHAM, MA—We live in a digital world. Children are spending more time indoors now than ever before in history, and much of that time is behind screens. What will this mean for the child’s well-being in the future?

Play Again, an award-winning documentary film, explores some of these questions and follows six teenagers on their first outdoor adventure experience. The La Vida Center for Outdoor Education at Gordon College is the official sponsor of Play Again at the Salem Film Fest on March 5 at 10 a.m. La Vida will also present Play Again on March 11 at 7 p.m. at the Ken Olsen Science Center Auditorium at Gordon College. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. for an open house information time about the La Vida Center, which celebrated 40 years of outdoor education this year. After the screening there will be a question and answer session with Gordon professors, moderated by Provost Mark Sargent.

“If it’s true that young people spend 90 percent of their time indoors, what will happen when they lose their connection with nature?” says Rich Obenschain, director of La Vida. “Not only will it affect their health, but they also won’t learn to appreciate and know how to care for our planet. La Vida is a program that encourages kids to learn and grow from outdoor adventures, to respect and love nature--and this film reflects our commitment to that.”

Play Again has been shown at 19 independent film festivals in 2010, and is continuing its 2011 tour with the screening at the Salem Film Festival in Salem, MA. The film encourages unstructured playtime outdoors so kids will learn to explore and create with what is naturally around us.

“What they (children) do not know, they will not protect, and what they do not protect, they will lose,” said Charles Jordan of The Conservation Fund, who is featured in the film.

La Vida answers the film’s challenge by offering an Adventure Day for families in April as well as a variety of summer programs for all age groups. Adventure Day will provide families the opportunity to respond to the film by engaging with each other outdoors on the high and low ropes courses and through other team-building activities.

For 40 years the La Vida Center has offered quality programs for churches, schools, businesses and youth organizations in New England and beyond. These unique programs provide experiential education and adventure learning to foster character formation and leadership development to prepare youth for life.

The public is invited to both screenings. At Gordon a registration card will be available at the door or online to enter to win prizes. There will be a $10 suggested donation that goes towards finishing a training and activity space for La Vida on the Gordon campus.

For more information or to register, contact the La Vida Office at 978.867.4111 or visit www.gordon.edu/lavida/playagain. For information on the Salem Film Festival, visit www.salemfilmfest.com.


Gordon College is a multidenominational Christian college of the liberal arts and sciences on Boston’s North Shore, offering majors in 38 fields with graduate programs in education and music education. Gordon is nationally recognized for excellence in academics and in character building, and ranks as one of the nation’s top Christian colleges. www.gordon.edu