Grant Park Playground & Sprayground
This park is a great place to spend a lot of time, especially with kids of different ages. The park is is large and well-maintained and almost easy to miss.
THE SHADIER PLAYGROUND AND SPRAYGROUND is located toward the left of the parking lot near the basketball courts. You'll first come across the sprinklers which is a large concrete area with ground spouts and one protruding pipe. It is mostly sunny with a little shade in one corner. The sprinklers are continuous and don't cause any pools of water on the ground. There is little seating for Moms but there is a lovely view of Grant Pond. This area is completely fenced in with a gate that closes. There are restrooms in the administration building adjacent to the sprinklers.
Continue on the path around the sprinkler area and the playground is just behind. There are several separate sections designated for different ages. Each section is clearly not new equipment but is maintained and has some unique features that kids will enjoy. There are fun areas for ages 1-4, 5-8, and 9-12 with very different equipment in each space. There are sand pits, swings, slides of all sizes, chain ladders, and bridges. The entire area is fenced in with two small openings. The ground is rubber with asphalt pathways. There are some bright picnic tables in the sunny and a gazebo with shade seating.
Behind the playground is the pond which is fenced off. It has a lovely path around almost half of the edge. Taking a walk here you may see fishing and lots of ducks and swans.
GOOD FOR: Killing lots of time with kids of different ages.
BEST FEATURE: For Moms, the views of the pond are very calming. For kids, the tall, twisted metal slide which my son went down continuously.
YOU SHOULD KNOW: We went midday during the week and it was almost empty. There were no camps and we had a blast.
THE BLUE PLAYGROUND is located on the right side of the parking lot near the ball fields and courts. This playground is newer but sunnier with no seating inside the fence. The gate closes so you can feel completely comfortable that the kids can't escape without you. Moms can walk a loop around the outside of the playground if they want exercise. There is one bench in shade under the gazebo outside the playground's fence.
This playground has big and little kid equipment on separate sides. The little kid side has small slides, steering wheels, and swings. The big kid side has two enormous twisty slides and one very large straight slide that my son absolutely loved. There are tons of climbing features to get to the very top of the structure.
The ground is rubber and the restrooms are located in the small building right outside. Bring the sunscreen as this area is hot.
GOOD FOR: Getting hot before heading over to the sprinkler area.
BEST FEATURE: The three very tall slides on the big side.
YOU SHOULD KNOW: There is no seating inside the playground. Moms will have to walk or stand if they want to be inside the fence.