2015 Conference on the Value of Play: Advancing Play

in partnership with IPA/USA

February 15-18, 2015
Madren Center, Clemson, South Carolina

Conference sessions begin at 1 PM on Sunday, February 15, 2015. The program concludes Tuesday evening following the closing banquet, which is included with the registration.

Register Now Schedule At A Glance Full Conference Program Hotel Shuttle Schedule
Attendees enjoy PLAY time!
Attendees enjoy PLAY time!

The 2015 conference will feature five tracks: Education, Programming, Park and Recreation, Health, Business/Corporate. Conference attendees will also learn from renowned keynote speakers, Dr. Peter Gray and Dr. Kevin Ross Emery. The two and a half day event will provide numerous opportunities to play, network, and collaborate. It is a gathering not to be missed!

Keynote Speakers

Dr. Peter Gray, research professor of psychology at Boston College, is author of an internationally acclaimed introductory psychology textbook (Psychology, Worth Publishers, now in its 7th edition), which views all of psychology from an evolutionary perspective. His recent research focuses on the roles of play in human evolution and how children educate themselves, through play and exploration, when they are free to do so. He has expanded on these ideas in his recent book,Free to Learn: Why Unleashing the Instinct to Play Will Make Our Children Happier, More Self-Reliant, and Better Students for Life (Basic Books, 2013). Dr. Gray's keynote presentation will be "What Exactly Is Play and Why Is It Such a Powerful Vehicle for Learning?"

Kevin Ross Emery, known by many as "Dr. Kevin," is a national expert in the ADD/HD field and recognized as an early innovator who integrated the concepts of coaching and counseling seamlessly into a single process known as synergetic catalysm. Dr. Kevin is known for viewing ADD/HD as a "gift" that is "here to broaden the bandwidth of humanity." He is also an accomplished author as well as a regular media resource. Dr. Kevin's keynote will be "Managing the Gift of ADD/HD Through Play and Creativity."


Featured Speakers

(More to come!)









The Featured Speakers for the 2015 Play Conference cross the spectrum on Play research and initiatives. Here is just a sampling of what’s in store...

Hedda Sharapan - Play as a Lifelong Journey: An Approach for All of Us, Young and Old Alike, Based on Fred Rogers’ Timeless Wisdom.

Martin LeBlanc - Nature Passport Project: Using technology to Play and Explore in Nature

Monica Vilhauer - The Ethical Dimensions of Play

Robin Moore - National Guidelines for Creating and Managing Places where Children Engage with Nature

Angela Hanscom of Timbernook - Play Outdoors: The Ultimate Sensory Experience

Debbie Rhea - The Link Project: Putting Play, Character Development, Creative Time, and Academic Content in Perspective

General Sessions

An alphabetical listing of our General Sessions can be found at: http://usplaycoalition.wordpress.com/2015/01/09/an-abc-of-general-sessions/ (a full schedule with dates/times for each will be available soon).


You can register to attend the 2015 Conference today; the early bird discount ends November 30, 2014.

What attendees of the 2014 conference had to say:

Participants engage in PLAYful learning during an educational session.
Participants engage in PLAYful learning during an educational session.

"So much fun! This conference is so well organized and so well put together that it is an absolute joy to attend each year."

"This is one of my favorite play conferences. I wouldn't miss it!"

"I had a wonderful time, and I'm telling all my associates they need to put the conference on their list of 'must have' experiences for 2015."

"I am a full-time play advocate. This is my #1 conference to attend."

"I've attended two previous conferences and found them valuable and fun!"

Who attends:

Attendees of the annual conference come from diverse fields including park and recreation professionals, educators, researchers, health scientists, landscape architects, business leaders, psychologists, parents, physicians, and many more.



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