The Pop-Up Adventure Play Days at the Maple Neighborhood Center over the summer months have been great fun. Kids of all ages have been able to engage in ‘good, old-fashioned’ play activities like digging holes, painting walls and building cardboard forts.
As we move toward establishing an ongoing Adventure Playground at Maple, we have been adding more challenging activities. Saws, hammers and nails are now more prominent. A ladder has been added to a tall tree to facilitate climbing. Kids have been signed in and dropped off by parents. All these activities are laying the ground work for us to open the Sacramento Adventure Playground for regular operation on Tuesday, August 23.
The closer we get to the opening day, the more we hear the question, “What’s the difference between the Pop-Up Adventure Play Days and the on-going Adventure Playground?”
The major difference is the age of the participants. The Adventure Playground at Maple is developed to serve children and youth ages 7 to 15 rather than children of all ages and their families. This is a big shift for Fairytale Town as we have always served young children (from birth to age 10) and their families. We are excited about the opportunity to offer playful and creative experiences for youth. The types of play at the Playground will suit older children and youth as they will involve a little more risk and creativity, and a lot less adult involvement.
Another significant difference is the introduction of tools and building supplies. Saws, hammers, nails, screwdrivers, sewing machines and such will be available for participants to use. Play workers will be on hand to make sure the participants learn how to properly use and care for the tools, but the kids will be able to create and build things they can call their own.
There are other minor differences as well…
- The Adventure Playground will be open during afterschool and weekend hours. Operating hours will be 2:30-6:30 PM Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays, and Saturdays from 11 AM to 3 PM.
- Once registered by a parent or guardian, children and youth can come and go from the Adventure Playground on their own. Parents and guardians may visit the Playground, but for observation only. They are encouraged to let their children pursue activities on their own.
- Participants can create—and destroy—things over time, rather than in a one-day time-frame.
And, of course, much is the same…
- The Adventure Playground will be free to those who register.
- Participants will get messy and are encouraged to wear clothes and shoes that can get dirty. (In fact, closed-toe shoes are required.)
- The Playground will continue to hold regular Pop-Up Days for the community—at both Maple Neighborhood Center and other locations around town!
Around the world, Adventure Playgrounds tend to become places the participants call their own; and we hope the Sacramento Adventure Playground at Maple does as well.
Learn more about the Sacramento Adventure Playground at the Playground’s website.