Detroit's Volunteer Landscaping Group Held a Blindfolded Lawn Mowing Match


There are tons of quirky, death-defying games out there (underwater hockey, anyone?), but blindfolded lawn mowing might take the cake.

According to The Detroit News, a team of volunteer landscapers in the Motor City who call themselves the Detroit Mower Gang invented the bizarre competitive sport while mowing an overgrown local park this past week.

Founded in 2010, the Detroit Mower Gang is a group of self-described “renegade landscapers” who meet every other Wednesday to trim the city's neglected parks and playgrounds. “[We] choose parks that have playground equipment in them, need help, and are near neighborhoods that have strong populations of kids,” they state on Facebook.

While cutting Hammerberg Field on the city's west side, members of the Detroit Mower Gang decided to see who could drive their lawn tractor the straightest while wearing a blindfold. They dubbed the friendly competition the “Blindfold Mowing Olympics.”

Not surprisingly, it’s pretty hard to mow grass if you can’t see. None of the drivers achieved a perfectly parallel line, but one participant, whose steering was the best in an understandably bad lot was declared the winner. (Thankfully, no one was injured, either.)

The official award was a collection of used blindfolds, but as The Detroit News points out, the real prize was a reclaimed play spot for local kids. Owned by Detroit Public Schools, Hammerberg Field contains a playground, football field, and baseball diamond, the Associated Press reports. However, since Detroit has many parks and can’t afford to take care of all of them, the field had fallen into disrepair. Now, thanks to the Detroit Mower Gang, it’s on its way to becoming usable again.

Until recently, the Detroit Mower Gang operated on a shoestring budget, and members supplied their own lawn tractors and weed whackers. Now, thanks to Craftsman, they’ll soon be mowing in style. According to Crain’s Detroit Business, the famous tool manufacturer just donated $18,000 worth of lawn and garden equipment (five riding mowers, trimmers, hedgers, and other gear) to the group.

Craftsman will also sponsor the Detroit Mower Gang’s “Motown Mowdown” event on Saturday, May 21, where volunteers will attempt to mow as many parks as they can in 12 hours.  No word, however, on whether the tool company will supply the group with new blindfolds for their next impromptu competition.  

Watch the Detroit Mower Gang in action via the above video. 

[h/t The Detroit News]

Banner image courtesy of iStock.