Turf Wars – The Debate Continues

Can natural grass allow as much frequent athletic play as synthetic turf? Is synthetic turf easier to maintain than natural grass?  Have some synthetic turf materials proven toxic to humans?  Separate fact from fiction in the ongoing debate on the advantages and drawbacks of synthetic turf and natural grass at the 2015 MACo Summer Conference.


Artificial and synthetic turf athletic fields are an increasingly popular alternative to traditional grass fields. Advocates praise their ability to be used nearly continuously and to reduce certain types of injuries. However, opponents question the safety of certain synthetic field materials, alleging that they are toxic to both children and adults. As more counties and public school systems have switched to artificial turf, opponents have unsuccessfully pursued legislation before the Maryland General Assembly that would ban or regulate their use. Panelists will explain the established advantages and drawbacks of both natural and synthetic turf fields and debate the alleged health risks posed by certain artificial field materials.


  • Darren Gill, Vice-President – Marketing, Innovation, Customer Service, FieldTurf
  • The Honorable Marc Elrich, Montgomery County Council Member
  • Jerad Minnick, Natural Grass Advisory Group
  • Rick Anthony, Director, Anne Arundel County Department of Parks and Recreation

Moderator: The Honorable Jefferson Ghrist, Maryland House of Delegates

Date & Time: Thursday, August 13, 2015, 3:30 PM – 4:30 PM

Learn more about MACo’s Summer Conference:

For a schedule of educational sessions at MACo’s Summer Conference, please view the Registration Brochure.

Questions? Contact Meetings & Events Director Virginia White.