STREAMING NOW: Watch Now

Huntsville native's '50-yard Challenge' inspiring others to do good deeds

It all started with the goal to help the elderly, people with disabilities and veterans mow their lawns. Now, it has grown to more than 1,000 people involved in the cause.

Posted: Jun 26, 2019 5:34 PM
Updated: Jun 26, 2019 5:43 PM

A Huntsville native, Rodney Smith Jr., and his '50-Yard Challenge' have the eyes of thousands across the country.

With more than 400 kids involved, only one girl has completed the challenge. Now, Kyra Smith from Huntsville has stepped up to mow 50 yards.


Rodney Smith Jr.

Kyra Smith

WAAY 31 spoke with Rodney and Kyra about what the '50-Yard Challenge' really means for kids and teenagers.

It all started with the goal to help the elderly, people with disabilities and veterans mow their lawns. Now, it has grown to more than 1,000 people involved in the cause.

"They're elderly or disabled, and it's just so great to get to help them and see their face light up when you're there to just sit and talk with them, mow their grass, or just do anything like that. Just an amazing experience," said Kyra Smith.

Kyra Smith is a student at Hope Christian Academy in Huntsville, and she said she's determined to do what only one other girl has done. That's to mow 50 lawns, by herself, under Rodney Smith Jr.'s '50-Yard Challenge.'

She said this is something more girls should participate in.

"Very empowering to like stand up. Go out with a whole group of women and just have fun with it," said Kyra.

The challenge is a spin-off of Rodney's original deed of mowing lawns for free in all 50 states. When he was done, he wanted to get kids involved.

All you do is take a picture saying you accept the challenge, and then, Rodney will bring all the gear you need. Once you mow all 50 yards, you get a brand new lawn mower and some kids can even qualify for school credit.

"I know it's big, but I don't really realize it because I have those blinders on my eyes and I'm keeping straight," said Rodney Smith Jr.

His push right now is for more young girls to get involved.

"More young ladies are joining that way, and we're trying to teach boys and girls to make a difference one lawn at a time," said Rodney Smith Jr.

Kyra said she’s thankful to be a part of something bigger than her.

"I'm grateful that I'm one of these people, one of these kids, that gets to go out and help everybody do this. It's very good experience," she said.

She said she's anxious to mow all 50 lawns by herself, but she's prepared for the challenge.

Rodney said his mowing days aren't over just yet. From now until the end of the July, he is looking to help breast cancer survivors or women who are going through chemotherapy, by mowing their lawns for free.

Huntsville
Clear
60° wxIcon
Hi: 81° Lo: 59°
Feels Like: 60°
Florence
Clear
61° wxIcon
Hi: 83° Lo: 61°
Feels Like: 61°
Fayetteville
Clear
61° wxIcon
Hi: 81° Lo: 58°
Feels Like: 61°
Decatur
Clear
60° wxIcon
Hi: 81° Lo: 58°
Feels Like: 60°
Scottsboro
Overcast
55° wxIcon
Hi: 80° Lo: 57°
Feels Like: 55°
WAAY Radar
WAAY WAAY-TV Cam
WAAY Temperatures

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Confirmed Cases: 152272

Reported Deaths: 2621
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Jefferson22400372
Mobile14282314
Tuscaloosa9983132
Montgomery9691196
Madison899992
Shelby703560
Lee643966
Baldwin637567
Marshall426748
Calhoun410259
Etowah402049
Morgan394532
Houston363132
DeKalb316727
Elmore309552
St. Clair279742
Limestone269227
Walker268092
Talladega255034
Cullman225823
Lauderdale206340
Autauga199928
Franklin199131
Jackson199114
Colbert190627
Russell19023
Dallas185227
Blount183823
Chilton180531
Escambia170928
Covington164729
Coffee16409
Dale162551
Pike130212
Chambers127343
Tallapoosa127286
Clarke126716
Marion104229
Butler99840
Barbour9819
Marengo96721
Winston89913
Geneva8337
Pickens80317
Randolph79514
Lawrence79230
Bibb78913
Hale74529
Cherokee71514
Clay70712
Lowndes69927
Bullock63517
Henry6316
Monroe6279
Washington62112
Crenshaw59030
Perry5796
Wilcox55712
Conecuh55413
Fayette54712
Macon52919
Cleburne5247
Sumter46421
Lamar4575
Choctaw38612
Greene33316
Coosa1963
Out of AL00
Unassigned00

Tennessee Coronavirus Cases

Confirmed Cases: 232061

Reported Deaths: 2922
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Shelby34370552
Davidson29801325
Knox1183387
Hamilton11097102
Rutherford11031106
Williamson661848
Sumner5636107
Wilson440253
Putnam411053
Montgomery385751
Out of TN379435
Unassigned37653
Madison361378
Bradley340821
Sullivan318844
Sevier314920
Blount310231
Washington308043
Maury307435
Robertson248539
Hamblen232743
Tipton219222
Gibson205437
Dyer202326
Hardeman178732
Coffee176020
Trousdale17407
Obion163617
Bedford159020
Dickson156218
Wayne15607
Greene155650
Anderson155513
Loudon154010
Fayette152022
McMinn150832
Cumberland148924
Lawrence146217
Jefferson145818
Weakley143425
Carter141532
Henderson135425
Monroe134823
Warren13399
Hardin131319
Lauderdale130818
Macon125724
Franklin121115
Haywood119025
Roane11857
Overton111211
Johnson11046
Hawkins109923
Carroll109324
McNairy108825
White107614
Marshall10528
Rhea104816
Cheatham96911
Lake9683
Smith93313
Bledsoe9244
Cocke92212
Giles89234
Campbell8647
Fentress8497
Lincoln8012
Crockett76620
Henry74110
Hickman73913
Chester71214
Marion6999
DeKalb67216
Decatur62511
Grainger5314
Grundy5168
Claiborne4956
Union4932
Polk46913
Jackson4165
Humphreys4094
Morgan4086
Houston38914
Benton3879
Cannon3862
Unicoi3641
Clay36312
Lewis3502
Sequatchie3294
Scott3244
Stewart3087
Meigs2944
Moore2452
Pickett2445
Perry2041
Van Buren1911
Hancock1123

Community Events