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Wednesday, February 1, 2023
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10 Playgrounds Perfect for Winter Visits

Get out of the house and enjoy being outside

Cooler temperatures can scare parents and their kids away from the playgrounds, but I have a different opinion: now is the BEST time to visit outdoor spaces. The crowds are smaller, the children need to release energy from being inside too much, and a little vitamin D on our cheeks can help reset our whole day. 

Check out this list of 10 favorite play spots to enjoy during the cooler months, which includes two indoor spaces just in case the rain or snow is unavoidable. As a reminder, dogs are generally not permitted on playgrounds. 

Sandy Point State Park playground can get very busy in the summer with its beach access, which is why the cooler months can be the perfect time to check out the amazing playground with two fun themes. You can choose to visit the forest playground structure, or the nautical boat and beach side. This playground is on the newer side so the equipment is in good condition.  You’ll find slides, bridges, climbing ropes, a “wave” to climb up and a “turtle” to say hello to as you sit on its back. Plus there is no shade over this playground so the sun will warm both kiddos and caregivers up in chilly temps!

This playground is definitely worth a trip when the crowds are small and the sun is out. Don’t forget to stop at the second playground near the entrance if you want to make a day of it!

Robinson Nature Center is one of my favorite places to take my kids since it has so many options with trails to explore, in-person classes and a beautiful natural playground. The playground includes wooden structures to climb over, logs to climb in, a wooden oven and table with kitchen supplies, musical instruments, tree swings and a slide! This is such a good spot to visit in the cooler months because if the weather gets too cold, you go inside and pay $5 for adults, $3 for kids to check out the indoor exhibits, children discovery room and planetarium if it is open. 

If you need to convince your child to get out of the house, you need a “WOW” playground like this special place. Sophie and Madigan’s Playground is a magical new playground (renamed the princess playground by my daughter) and has many well thought out details. There is a huge castle in the center with multiple ways to enter the structure- through Rapunzel’s hair, the mermaid tale, the rock climb or the stairs. Inside the castle there are bridges, a telescope in the turret, slides and endless climbing opportunities. There is also a treasure hunt, Rapunzel spinning web, pumpkin carriage, horse spring rides and a small slide. 

As of Fall 2022, Phase 2 “Wonder Land” was added to this playground which includes a magical Cheshire Tower, card soldier maze, Mad Hatter Tea Spinners and beautiful graphics to explore.  If you have a child who enjoys princesses or fairy tales this should be on your winter wonderland bucket list! 

What do we need the most when visiting a playground in the cold? SUN! Meadowbrook Park gets a ton of sunlight plus it has a huge long structure that is connected in multiple ways leaving shelter under the playground structure for the kids to hide and run under if it is too windy or cold. There is a small playground structure for the younger kids if they want space to safely play without getting run over by the big kids. This particular playground can get very busy in the summer as it is close to the local Long Gate Shopping center but if you go during the chilly months, you’ll usually only see a couple families there! There is also a trail to walk or visit the nearby Barnes and Noble, Target or grab a bite to eat at one of the restaurants. 

Kinder Farm Park is a great place to find multiple things to do in one visit. It will keep your body temperatures high as you move around to visit all the different areas. They have a large newer playground, trails, disc golf, pavilions and a farmhouse. The farm complex has animals to visit and observe. There is also a Kinder Family Farmhouse Museum, which sometimes hosts holiday events for kids. 

Marty’s Mythical Woods is another unique playground that will have the children excited to get out of the house even on a chilly day. This playground was built because 20 old ash trees had died and it was decided to use the space to make a magical mythical spot for kids. There are a ton of open play structures in the middle of the woods as well as multiple climbing opportunities including a giant spider web.

 I think this playground is good for all ages but keep in mind some of the troll and dragon creatures are “scary” looking so be mindful if you have little ones. 

Cedar Villa Heights Park is another great spot for SUN, SUN, SUN. It is not shaded so it will keep the kids warm as they play. The caregiver is also able to sit and see the whole playground from one location, which can be very helpful with multiple kids. However the playground is also spread out over multiple structures so you can feel like you are spaced out enough and not on top of other families. This playground is always quiet. The equipment is in good condition too!

If you want to go visit an outdoor kid-friendly ice-skating rink, the new Color Burst Ice Rink in Merriweather District is the place to go. The rink is decorated with lights and snowflakes and very family friendly. Check out the events calendar to see if you can catch any of their market days featuring local vendors. Nearby you will be able to find many restaurants and don’t forget to stop at The Charmery for some yummy ice-cream. Make sure to visit before it closes for the season at the end of February! 

If the weather becomes too rainy, snowy or cold then it is always good to have a fun indoor option. This indoor play space is perfect for toddlers and young children. They have different themes across their play space such as animal hospital, diner, ice cream truck, beauty boutique and a grocery market. My son played for hours here! Children can use their imagination and exhibit independence while parents can sit on benches in the middle of the room where they can observe all sections of the play space. 

Port Discovery is a children’s museum located in the heart of Baltimore. It has 3 floors of endless open play areas with fun themes and activities. There are options for kids of all ages. They even have a sensory friendly feature on their website which will provide you with six different options to explore. While you are in Baltimore, you can check out local restaurants or walk by the Inner Harbor as well. 

By Katrina Kessler

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