The benefits of sport do not diminish with age.  
The opportunities shouldn't either.

Leveling the Playing Field
Commemorating the 40th Anniversary of Title IX and Celebrating the History of
Women in Sports

I have a vision, Chuck… I can see the day coming when women will have the same
opportunities in sports as men! – Peppermint Patty, 1979

June 23, 2017 marks the 45th anniversary of the passage of Title IX, legislation that
ensures equal access to both men and women in federally-funded educational
programs and activities, including sports. Leveling the Playing Field, an upcoming
exhibition to the Kansas City area, commemorates this milestone in sports history
while adding the hilarity of Peanuts to the tribute.

Leveling the Playing Field features Charles Schulz’s even-handed depiction of girls in
sports with 86 original Peanuts comic strips, and an overview of women’s sports
history. The exhibition will also detail Schulz’s connections in the world of women’s
sports, his friendship with legendary sports icon Billie Jean King, and his early years
coaching a local women’s softball team.

After Schulz met Billie Jean King, he highlighted the issue of females in sports with a
multi-day storyline in 1979 about Title IX in his comic strip. Schulz brought attention to
women athletes by mentioning contemporary female sports stars and having his girl
characters participate in a wide variety of sports, from football to figure skating. From
Peppermint Patty’s athletic dominance to Lucy’s ineptitude in the right field to Marcie’
s total bewilderment with sports of all kinds, the girls in Peanuts were always equal
participants.

Charles Schulz brought his life-long passion for sports to Peanuts, and from the
very beginning his girl characters participated in sports of all kinds. Schulz often
used the theme of fairness in his comic strip and believed in giving everyone equal
opportunity. Consequently, in Peanuts he created standout girl athletes,
encouraged girls’ participation in sports as diverse as football and figure skating.
Schulz became even more aware of the issue of equal opportunity for women in
Schulz became even more aware of the issue of equal opportunity for women in
sports after meeting legendary sports icon Billie Jean King in the early 1970s and
throwing his support behind the Women’s Sports Foundation (WSF). One of the
WSF’s major goals was to ensure the implementation of Title IX. Signed into law in
1972, Title IX guaranteed equal access to both men and women in federally–funded
educational programs and activities, including sports.

In 1979, at a particularly crucial time in the history of implementing Title IX, Schulz
brought public attention to the issue by creating a multi-day storyline in Peanuts
about the legislation and the status of girls and women in sports. But his efforts to
promote women and sports did not end there; he continued to highlight the
contribution of women athletes by featuring contemporary female sports stars in his
comic strip and by hosting a senior women’s tennis tournament and a “mixed” golf
tournament.

Leveling the Playing Field, a traveling exhibition from the Charles M. Schulz
Museum & Research Center, commemorates the 45th anniversary of Title IX and
celebrates girls in sports as only Peanuts can. The exhibition features 86 Peanuts
comic strips, and an overview of women’s sports history.  Hosting venues are
encouraged to add artifacts and memorabilia from their own collections to enhance
the exhibition.
Peanuts — September 27, 1979