“Here,” they say, “Go play. Make stuff.”
And the kids do, and they of course love it. My daughter, 2, is still a little young for this type of playspace, I think, but I cannot wait for the time when we can go together. I’m not sure what this place is called, but it surely must look like these “Lost Adventure Playgrounds” Greg over at DaddyTypes mourns today.
I have never even heard of these places, and now, sadly, they are all gone or nearly so.
Growing up, my middling little suburb only had safe, secure playgrounds with wood structures and chain swings. There was nothing like this: Lots of empty space, filled with sand and rubble or whatever, and where kids could just go and play until their hearts are content. So we made do with creeks and vacant construction sites and, in the end, had more fun than we ever had at the playground.
Now, of course, there’s few wooden playgrounds anymore — let alone wild spaces set aside for kids. Now, it’s all plastic and rubberized flooring. A kid falls from 30 feet and the only problem is her shirt wrinkles.
I wish more cities had these play wonderlands. Greg mentions that one of the problems with them — well, besides the tetanus — is that moms complained because they couldn’t see their kids while sitting and chatting. Sorry, kid — coffee comes before creative play.
Are you in favor of these open spaces for kids, or the new, remodeled playgrounds?
[Photo: Arnold Eagle and David Robbins]