“The Great Grass Race” Is Basically The Cannonball Run With Lawnmowers

Great Grass Lawn Mower Race Across US
(Facebook/TheGreatGrassRace)

Lawnmowers are far more than just tools to keep our yards looking better than the yard of the rival dad across the street. Lawnmowers help us stay connected to our communities, and did you know there are lawnmower gangs that keep our parks trimmed? Not to mention mowing lawns give dads some much-needed “me time.” So we’re all in for a new streaming service called Menace Vision that’s giving us another highly unusual use for our favorite motorized lawn care companions – a race across North America.

This is far from the fast-paced action-packed reality show we’re used to, but with everything in the world being as chaotic as it is, 10 mph may be exactly the speed we need right now. The Great Grass Race’s Facebook page explains, “Six teams race across North America with just a lawnmower, a trailer, and people skills to rely on. No gas. No food. No money.”

The Facebook group has accumulated over 2,000 followers, with members of the community often popping in to share that they’d run into the show’s camera crew on their journey across the US. The race is set to last roughly three months, as contestants make their way from Los Angeles, California to New York on their trusty Craftsman T110 lawnmowers.

The neon green team spoke to KSN about the competition. “Everybody had a box with their name on it and inside the box was your color shirt so you had to match up with somebody,” one competitor explained. This means that teammates embarking on this nearly 3,000-mile trek were initially strangers.

The challenge extends far beyond the act of riding a lawnmower across the country – contestants have to rely on the kindness of strangers for food, shelter, and whatever else they may need along the way. With additional challenges thrown in and perpetually-changing rules, this race keeps the six brave teams on their toes.

The show’s creator and executive producer Denis Oliver told FOX10, “I wanted a show that everyone could relate to while also forcing people, including strangers, to work together toward a common objective. This long lawnmower ride is a metaphor for our longing to bridge the tremendous distance we feel between each other right now.”

While the show will also be available on other streaming services such as Google Play and Amazon Fire TV, Oliver created Menace Vision to generate more revenue to fund future shows and donate to charity. The Great Grass Race began on July 10 and is expected to continue through mid-October. Who will succeed? Whose ass will be grass? Only time will tell.

New Dad Starts Free Mowing Service for Seniors and Veterans After Losing Job

Man Loses Job, Mows Lawns for Free
(SUPPLIED)

The pandemic has caused the world as we know it to flip on its head. Athletes are stepping away from the career of a lifetime to focus on more urgent matters, people are losing their jobs due to business closures and downsizing, and local heroes are stepping up to help their communities stay afloat. Brian Schwartz from New Jersey experienced the full range of life in the era of COVID, pushing through every challenge he faced. He was laid off from his job in advertising, started a free-of-charge lawn mowing service to help disabled veterans and senior citizens, oh – and he became a dad.

After his company downsized due to COVID, Schwartz refused to let the loss of his job keep him down. Because of the high number of people looking for employment paired with the fact that his job could be done remotely, Schwartz knew he would be competing with people around the country for any available job. Instead of stewing in his own stress, he chose a different route to make his time out of work productive. “I had to think about something different that I can add to my resume that reflects who I am as a person and gets noticed by hiring managers. All the while feeling good about doing something for others when they might not be able to,” Schwartz told The Dad.

In response to his own hardship, Schwartz decided to put some good into the world in the form of his service, “I Want To Mow Your Lawn”.This past November, Schwartz lost his grandfather. This focused his attention on the elderly community, as he remembered how challenging it was even in normal times to worry constantly about aging relatives. “I can only imagine the stress families have been going through worried sick about their elder folks and/or suffering losses throughout the pandemic. So I just wanted to help out where I could to provide not just physical but mental relief.”

Man Loses Job, Mows Lawns for Free
(SUPPLIED)

At first, Schwartz was running a one-man mow. But after being featured in the local news, two New Jersey residents who had also been laid off reached out to offer their services. Even Schwartz’s former co-worker offered to help with social media, and she has since become “VP of Social Mowments.” Schwartz hopes to continue mowing lawns for seniors and veterans for as long as he can, possibly turning it into a weekend hobby once he is working full-time again. He even plans on setting up a similar service to shovel snow in the winter.

How does this hard-working dad with a heart of gold stay so motivated? Well, he credits his newborn son and his own dad, who is battling brain cancer. Both of them are currently fighting admirable battles – Schwartz’s son, Dylan, was born with a cataract in his right eye meaning that after surgery and a few months of weekly doctor visits, he will have to wear an eyepatch to train his eyesight. Schwartz’s dad was given about 15 months to live in November of 2018, but blew past doctors’ projections and was able to meet his first grandchild.

Man Loses Job, Mows Lawns for Free
Schwartz’s dad with his grandson (L), Schwartz with his newborn son (R) (SUPPLIED)

“Both of them have given me strength and inspiration,” Schwartz says. “They make me believe anything is possible.”

Man Who Mows Lawns for the Elderly and Veterans, Delivers Free Meals Too

Raising Men Lawn Care Service
(Instagram/rodneysmithjr)

One man in Alabama has inspired kids around the nation to mow lawns of the elderly, veterans, and single mothers for free, and the pandemic has only increased his desire to give back to communities. Rodney Smith Jr. founded the Raising Men Lawn Care Service, a lawn care collaborative that aims to keep kids on a positive path and provide free lawn care to those who need it most, especially the elderly, the disabled, single mothers and veterans.

Keeping up with your lawn can be difficult for some people, (especially when your mower is stolen). Rodney’s story is remarkable. A major part of their service is to have kids take part in the 50-yard challenge, where after a kid mows their 50th lawn for free, they are given a brand new mower and leaf blower for free. More than 700 kids have signed up for the challenge and together they’ve mowed more than 15,000 lawns.


Rodney also tours the nation cutting grass for those in his target demographic to help. He’s gone through all 50 states 8 times, but the COVID-19 pandemic has crippled tour number 9. But that doesn’t keep a guy like Rodney down, as he’s continued to mow lawns in his hometown, and while he’s at it, he’s been delivering meals and much-needed supplies to the elderly and the disabled while he’s there.

He’s been delivering supplies to people who can’t get out of the house from donations his lawn service has received. He’s also worked with local charities to deliver meals. He told AL.com he mows, drops the meals or supplies, and moves along to the next house, all free of charge.

“I’m just mowing and doing what I love to do best: helping others.”


To learn more about his service or to donate to his cause, you can visit Raising Men Lawn Care Services.

After 85-Yr-Old’s Lawn Mower Was Stolen, Anonymous Hero Buys Him a New One

85-Year-Old Lawn Mower Replaced By Anonymous Donor
(Facebook/Candace Blakeslee)

There is no bond quite as sacred as the bond between a dad and his lawnmower. Lawnmowers are there, no questions asked, during the bad times and the good. Not only do they flawlessly do the job for which they are so aptly named, but they help us connect to our communities, and bring unexpected excitement to an everyday task. Gordon Blakeslee, an 85-year-old from Harpursville, New York loved his lawnmower. I’m not positive about the science behind this, but I’m fairly sure that the man-lawnmower bond is strengthened with every turn of the blade. Blakeslee has used the same mower, his treasured 2009 red Craftsman riding lawnmower, for several years – that is, until it was stolen.

Blakeslee recalled using his trusty red mower when his wife was still alive, and the routine of sitting in its comforting saddle remained a constant after she passed away. Blakeslee, like many others who live alone, moved in with family at the start of the COVID pandemic. When he returned several months later, he made a terrible discovery – his clipping companion was nowhere to be found.

Brokenhearted by the theft, Blakeslee refused to get a new lawnmower. Like a man holding onto the hope that his lost dog would one day return, Blakeslee would not replace his mower. He refused donations, and in a Facebook post, his daughter-in-law Candace insisted that there be no GoFundMe. She stated, “He is not seeking donations, just wants his 2009 red Craftsman from Harpursville, NY to be returned safely. We will continue to take care of him. He just wants that mower back!”

Blakeslee hand-wrote a simple cardboard sign to display in his front yard, hoping the thief was capable of compassion. “Bring back my mower,” the sign read, “I am 85 years old! I can’t push.” Ok, this man deserves all the lawnmowers. Please, just give him all the lawnmowers.

85-Year-Old Stolen Lawn Mower
(Facebook/Candace Blakeslee)

After a week of waiting for the mower’s safe return, the family began to lose hope. That is until the Broome County Sheriff’s Department showed up at Blakeslee’s house with an incredible surprise. It wasn’t his stolen mower, but a brand new bright red Craftsman riding lawn mower, and it was all his. An anonymous donor heard about Blakeslee’s devastating loss, and out of the kindness of this person’s enormous heart, bought the 85-year-old a brand new lawnmower.

A message to The Masked Mower: I don’t know who you are, but I hope that as long as you live, not a single dandelion touches your yard. May your grass never brown, and may your own mower have just enough gas to finish the job every single time. Thank you for your service.

App Offers Ohio Dads a Lawn Mow For $1 to Celebrate Father’s Day

$1 Lawn Mow Father's Day Special
(Getty/Elenathewise)

Mowing the lawn is quintessential dad work. The leisurely pace, the friendly neighbors, the greenly shoes. What most write off as dull, laborious yard work is effectively cat nip for dads.

But every now and then, even dad needs a break. And what better occasion than Father’s Day to give him one?

Eden is a Canada-based app that offers on-demand and subscription landscaping services, including lawn care and snow removal. The app recently expanded to the United States and is now offering the dads of Northeast Ohio a pretty sweet deal for the month of June.

If you’re in the Cleveland area, simply download the Eden app and use the promo code LOVEDAD to get your lawn mowed for the low low price of $1.

Eden founder and CEO Ben Zlotnick, a 20-year landscaping industry leader and dad himself, says he wants to give dads a break this summer. And if there were ever a year to give dad a break, it’s this one.

(Eden)

And it gets better! Eden will be reinvesting all profits from this promotion back into Northeast Ohio communities.

“We will be donating that dollar back to a local charity,” Zlotnick said in an interview. “We also recently launched $1 services to healthcare workers and teachers. We look at ways to give back to the community, and this is just one of the ways we have the ability to give back.”

If you’re a dad in the Cleveland area, click here to download the Eden app and reserve your $1 lawn mowing!

Meet the Dad Whose New Balances Glow When It’s Time to Mow

Scott Golz, American Lawnmower
(SUPPLIED)

Meet Scott Golz. Dad. Lawnmowing enthusiast. He caught our eye when he commented on a story we did about a community lawnmowing gang. He shared an amazing photo of him proudly posing on his trusted machine, hoisting an American flag. But our community also noticed a subtle glow coming from his New Balances. We needed to find out more. Thankfully, Scott was gracious enough to share his story and some of his tips for a ballpark-esque turf.

Every superhero has an origin story, what’s yours?

My lawn mowing history began around the age of 12. My father passed away 4 years prior so I am what you would call “self-taught”. I didn’t have much technique but damn were my lines straight. The interesting thing is, I had heard stories of my father and how he could mow the lawn with one hand and drink a cup of coffee with the other. It is quite possible that I had acquired some of the raw talent he possessed.

Tell us about your lawnmowing footwear.

The New Balance sneaker – I had my daughter at the age of 32, it was maybe a couple of weeks later when I purchased my 1st pair of New Balance running shoes. I can’t say what inspired me to try on that 1st pair but I did, and haven’t looked back since. New dad instincts I’m guessing.

Lawnmowing Footwear New Balance
(SUPPLIED)

I have a theory called the New Balance evolution. That 1st pair was my everyday shoe. I’d wear them to the grocery store, casual work meetings, and fun nights out on the town. When they began to lose their luster, they evolved into “work shoes”, mainly worn while doing various light-duty yard work. At this point, I purchase a new pair for everyday use. Once the new pair loses its luster, they evolve into the “work Shoes” and the old “work shoes” graduate to “Lawn Mowing Shoes”. These grass-stained soles are basically the Holy Grail of Dad footwear. I have a large assortment of grass-stained New Balance sneakers on display in my walk-in closet and the collection isn’t showing any signs of slowing. In terms of what pair I choose to wear when I mow, the sneakers basically dictate which pair will be worn on any specific day. I don’t choose the sneaker, the sneaker chooses me.

You may notice the “N” symbol on my New Balance shoes will glow at times. I compare it to the Bat-Signal. I always say “When the New Balance Glow, it’s time to mow”. I couldn’t tell you exactly when this phenomenon first occurred but I can tell you that every Dad has the ability to harness that power. It does come with time and patience. I have been a Dad now for 13 years and I would say it took a good 10 years before I experienced “The Glow”. The funny thing is… I believe it was right around the time I got my 1st riding mower. It was sitting in the garage of the new house we were putting an offer on. In my offer, I negotiated the beautiful green mower into the price of the house and the rest is history. The only thing that can diminish the glow is a rainy day. It is Dad Law that you cannot and must not mow when those blades of grass are wet.

How did becoming a dad change your mowing mindset? 

You need to teach your kids to take pride in everything they do, even mowing the lawn. I am sad to say, however, my 13-year-old daughter shows absolutely no interest in lawns, lawnmowers, or lawnmower accessories. She does say the striping looks really nice when I finish. I’ll take any compliment I can from her at this point.

Scott and Jenna Golz
Scott and Jenna (SUPPLIED)

What do you think of Robo-Mowers?

THEY’RE A JOKE. This is a major part of living the dad life. Don’t let robots take that away from you. If you want a robot to vacuum your new bamboo hardwoods, that’s acceptable.

Do you have any signature moves?

I have several signature moves. I usually pull out the 1 handed finger gun and pew-pew the next-door neighbor. Sometimes if I am having an exceptionally good mow, I whip out the double-handed finger guns and pew-pew like the wild west. Know this much, if you drive down my street, you will always get a wave no matter what. You will also see me mouth the words “who the hell is this”.

Do you have any lawnmowing rivals?

When I moved to my current house 3 years ago, my lawn was horrendous. Riddled with a cornucopia of weeds and the invasive “Nutsedge” I was a bit overwhelmed. My next-door neighbor Simon has a beautiful lawn and I decided if I get to look out at his masterpiece, he should get a masterpiece as well. I have been on a mission to be on the same level and it looks like I am almost there. I would not consider him competition, I would consider him motivation. He and his family are wonderful neighbors as well.

Between the two of us, we are the dominating forces in our neighborhood.

Ball Park Lawn Lines
(SUPPLIED)

What advice do you have for up and coming lawnmowing dads?

Keep your blades high, do not under any circumstance scalp your lawn. It opens the lawn up to weeds like you’d never imagined. Get yourself on a 3 step fertilization program and do not mow when the grass is wet. Another major component to my lawn success is to mulch your clippings, do not bag. The clippings are a natural fertilizer. Aerate the lawn every so often and dethatch as well. When you have things looking good and the grass is lush, buy yourself a striping kit for the mower. This will give you those beautiful lines you see at ballparks. This is how you attain lawn domination in your neighborhood. Sticking flame decals your kid got you for Father’s day on your mower definitely scores domination points as well.