No-TV family channels energy


Temptation came calling first thing Monday at the Whye house.

After reading about the Baltimore family's pledge to leave the television off this week, someone from a local radio station called their house in Gardenville and reached 5-year-old Candace.

"Put the TV on! Put the TV on now!" the voice exhorted the girl. But Candace was steadfast. The TV stayed off.

Candace and her family are participating in the first annual "National TV-Turnoff Week." The week is sponsored by TV-Free America, a Washington, D.C.-based advocacy group.

It was Lynn Whye who wanted her family to participate in the event this week. Mrs. Whye was looking forward to spending more time with her husband, Milford, and their three daughters. But cloudy skies and drizzle on Monday put a damper on the family's plans to spend some time together outdoors.

"I was hoping for a bright, sunny day," Mrs. Whye said.

So instead of turning on the TV after school, Candace and Alicia, 10, put on their skates and zoomed around the family basement.

Their older sister, 16-year-old Shanna, did homework over at a friend's house before her mom telephoned for her to come.

Shanna and her father were the least enthused about a week without TV. The teen was mostly on the honor system to stick to the family pledge. Her father, Milford, was already scheduled to play in a basketball game Monday night, but family members say the publicity about their pledge has generated a little "positive pressure" on him.

"He's been getting a lot of pats on the back for doing this," Mrs. Whye said.

"Daddy didn't turn on the TV," Alicia said. "He read a book."

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