Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Participants in Diaper Derby Are Really People of the Cloth; UNF Event Aims for Guinness Book of World Records

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Participants in Diaper Derby Are Really People of the Cloth; UNF Event Aims for Guinness Book of World Records

Article excerpt

Byline: Tracy Jones

Wobbly walking toddlers and moms wearing baby slings and sandals filled the room and waited for the countdown.

In the last minute, parents got the babies ready on blankets and changing pads. And when they got the go-ahead, moms and dads hurriedly changed their children's cloth diapers.

The mass undertaking served as Jacksonville's contribution to the Great Cloth Diaper Change - an international event where cloth diaper enthusiasts changed the diapers simultaneously, despite time zones, to raise awareness about the benefits of cloth diapering.

The event took place Saturday afternoon at the University of North Florida's University Center in hopes of setting a record for the number of cloth diapers changed simultaneously through the Guinness Book of World Records. There wasn't a record previously set for that category.

Stephanie Holt organized Jacksonville's event. She's the owner of Wee Wallaby, an online retailer specializing in cloth diapering, and teaches cloth diapering classes in Fernandina Beach and St. Augustine. But Holt only began cloth-diapering her nearly 1-year-old son, Matthew, at 7 months after seeing her sister-in-law use cloth diapers for her child.

"It wasn't all pins and prefolds like I had in my head," Holt said.

Holt said a common misconception about cloth diapering is that it's too difficult. But Holt said she's found it is less expensive, is better for the environment and is easier on her son's skin.

According to the Real Diaper Industry Association, about 95 percent of American families use disposable diapers, with 8,000 per family used during a child's diaper days. The Great Cloth Diaper Change hoped to encourage parents to consider cloth diapering, as well as unite those who already opt for cloth.

In a few weeks, the organizers will find out from Guinness what the official number of diapers changed totaled around the globe. In Jacksonville, there were 38 babies registered as being changed. Holt needed a 25-family minimum to qualify as a participating event for the global effort. …

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