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HomeBlogMommy DazeVisiting nature themed Imagination Playgrounds — Mommy Daze

Visiting nature themed Imagination Playgrounds — Mommy Daze

ImaginationPlayground NatureClimb01Slowly but surely we’ve been working our way around to all of the “Imagination Playgrounds” throughout Prince George’s County. Recently we decided to visit two in nearby Bowie that were only about 5 minutes apart from each other.

Nature Climb Imagination Playground

The first was the “Nature Climb” playground at Meadowbrook Park located off Moylan Drive. Luckily a friend told me it was a little tricky to find, so I was prepared.

The park is located within a neighborhood and there’s no parking lot. Visitors park on the street and walk back along the path into the woods. The playground is surrounded by large rock boulders, very fun to climb on for my adventure-seeking boys, but I imagine a little nerve-wracking for parents with very young children.

The playground itself was whimsical and fun, lots of tree-shaped climbing structures, toadstools and logs, and a variety of slides and swings. I loved that it was so secluded, shady, and the fact there were play structures for both toddlers and older children. It isn’t huge, but it’s big enough to keep kids busy for at least an hour or more.

There were a few benches and a table, but no public restrooms or large covered picnic areas. Another mom who frequents that playground told me that her children enjoy it there, but the boulder bridge that connects two tall play structures makes her nervous. It’s easy for kids to fall off the bridge when trying to cross. As we were speaking, I had to run over and help my almost 3-year-old so that he didn’t fall from that exact spot.

ImaginationPlayground OrchardOrchard Imagination Playground

Next we headed to “Orchard Playground” at Fairwood Park which was about a five minute drive away.

This Imagination Playground is located off a large main road, Fairwood Parkway, right inside a shopping center behind the Safeway. There’s plenty of parking, a very large gazebo — which looked like it was being rented for a party — and public restrooms.

The playground is pretty big with multiple areas to explore, but it’s located out in the middle of a field with little shade. We got hot very quickly.

There is a playground for toddlers and a sand pit with one digging tool, but that’s about it for young children. The larger play structures are tall and had lots of monkey-bars and climbing areas which were too advanced for my 4-year-old. There is a fun balance pedestal that he enjoyed spinning around on, and he liked watching the big kids climbing the geometric-shaped rope structure.

What really caused some issues was the NEOS Electronic Games Playground Equipment at the site. My boys had fun for a few minutes playing games where they had to try to “catch” the lights on the wall or hit specific colored lights. But a large crowd of older kids also gathered and were all trying to play at once. My little ones quickly got bumped, jostled and knocked down. Quite the tantrum ensued when I insisted we leave the game wall for the older kids to enjoy.

I’m still not sure how this playground fits the “Orchard” theme, especially having electronic games as part of its layout. I don’t think we’ll be visiting it again until my boys are older, and then we’ll bring lots of sunblock and hats.

For a list of more “Imagination Playgrounds” you can visit the Prince George’s County website.

Click here to read more Mommy Daze.

Watts edited W

Mandy Watts is a stay-at-home mom who lives in Crownsville with her husband, Justin, who runs their family business, and their two sons, 4-year-old James and 2-year-old Luke.

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