On a warm Thursday morning recently we popped over the the Bedford LeBrun Recreation Centre's playground (on Holland Avenue) to check it out. We have a playground on our own street but we go there a lot so whenever we have the chance to check out someplace new, we take it! Playgrounds are great for physical exercise for the kids, mental problem solving as they figure out how to manage different structures and challenges, and, if other kids are around, social skill development (though I see less and less kids at playgrounds these days sadly - get your kids out there!).
The structure said it was recommended for ages 5-12 however my 21 month old son and 3 3/4 year old daughter ignored the sign and charged ahead. Other than the crazy high monkey bars there wasn't anything my daughter couldn't handle; and my son could do everything else too except for the tall twisty ladder.
Side note: Practically every playground has those speaker things - do any kids actually use them? I'm curious why they seem to be a standard but I've rarely, if ever, seen a child play with them. Odd...
Some good things about this play structure:
- Three slides so there was always a slide free even when a preschool group joined us
- Three different options to get onto the structure - wide steps, short ladder, and a tall, twisty ladder. My son could do two of the three and my daughter could do all three (both with a little coaching and support the first few times they tried each)
- It has two dinosaurs for climbing on which was fun but didn't get used too much as once you got up there there wasn't much to do but climb back down :)
- A picnic table and bench were provided in a shady area
- The monkey bars were about eight feet high - I could barely get to them, I'm not sure how any child could use them
- Two of the three slides were all straight and flat - a twisty one would have been a fun addition. The third slide had a slight bump in it but otherwise they were all pretty similar
- No swings - we always love to use swings and so that would have been a great addition to the structure
- Right beside a parking lot but very few cars in a lot so it didn't affect us. If it had been busier it may have been anxiety producing, especially with my toddler.
Verdict: A nice simple playground that we had to ourselves for a couple hours, other than a brief visit from the local preschool. The kids played the whole time and had to be dragged away when it was time to go - always a good sign of a fun time.
What's your favourite local playground? We're always looking for something new so would love your recommendations! And do you kids use those speaker things? I need to know!