These Twelve Parks for Grown-Ups Offer the Benefits of Play and a Good Time
We are all lucky to live in an age of expansive play. Adult playgrounds and similar facilities are available throughout the U.S. for most anyone’s enjoyment and benefit. Each one serves as evidence that playgrounds, parks, and even businesses are increasingly paying attention to the kid inside us all. Most of these spaces go well beyond promoting child’s play for adults. The adult playgrounds highlighted below facilitate both creative and challenging activities that can help us stay in shape mentally and physically. Here are 12 fun playgrounds for adults you should definitely take advantage of:
1. San Jose’s Rotary Play Garden
This recently opened innovative playground in San Jose is designed to motivate kids of all ages to actively explore the environment around them. Though children may get the most excited, specific features have been included to ensure that adults can have good time while joining in on all the fun. Swinging, spinning, climbing and rocking equipment is strategically located throughout the play area while different types of tactile materials encourage creative exploration. A true community park should be accessible to everyone. The San Jose Rotary Park serves as a great example on how high-quality design can create a fun-filled space for the enjoyment and benefit of all.
2. Miami’s Fitness Zones
Free, fun, and beneficial, do you need any more reasons to get outside? Miami-Dade Parks were one of the first in the nation to boast of offering easy-to-use outdoor gym equipment accessible to nearly everyone. And nearly everyone seems to love these adult playgrounds! Effective at encouraging an increase in physical activity, the equipment is similar in nature to that found in private gyms and freely available for anyone to use. The innovatively designed playground equipment has proven popular with local adults of all ages. Miami-Dade Park’s Fitness Zones were created by the Trust for Public Land which operates 61 similar exercise areas and adult playgrounds in cities throughout the United States. If this particular style of playground for adults isn’t near you now, you can expect one to be coming soon.
3. City Museum of St. Louis
Not every adult playground needs the same emphasis on physical health. There are plenty of places for adults to ‘just have fun’ too. One such essential destination for the kid-at-heart is City Museum located in St. Louis. Created within (and on top, and around, and underneath) a former shoe factory, City Museum describes itself as an, “…eclectic mixture of playground, funhouse, surrealistic pavilion, and architectural marvel.” Highlights include a 10-story slide (if that’s a bit too much, there’s a mere 5-story slide as well), and an elaborate hand-crafted cave system that invites exploration. Though some fun-filled aspects of City Museum are permanent, many of the installations change. Which means a different adult playground may await multiple return visits.
4. Health Diagnostics Lab’s Indoor Slide
Multiple studies have demonstrated how effective play can be at improving productivity in nearly all work environments. As with any effort, high-quality design directly impacts how beneficial the play space will be. In other words, sticking a foosball table in the corner of the office break room is not going to inspire employees to approach their work with any creative urgency. The scientists at Health Diagnostic Lab understand this very well. Which is why employees there have the option of taking a slide when needing to get between floors. The sense of freedom and sudden shift in perspective offered by the sliding experience can help refresh a tired mind, and lead to inspirational breakthroughs not available to those merely taking the stairs. Here’s hoping this trend takes hold and that an office slide may soon be coming to your business too.
5. Chicago’s Lakefront – All of It
One important aspect in the creation of any playground is the encouragement of repeated use. There should always be more to do than that which can be done during a single visit. Our creative selves should almost never feel as though every possibility has been exhausted. Chicago’s famous lakefront certainly fits this description as well. Put on your hiking shoes or bring a bike and enjoy multiple locations along the lakefront’s 18-miles of well-maintained trails. Along the way, stop off at a museum or two, visit the free Lincoln Park Zoo, take-in a round of golf or tennis, join a pick-up soccer or softball game, relax on the beach, or rent a kayak and really get out into the lake. There will always be something inviting you back for more.
6. The MOMentum Adult Playgrounds in Washington State
As fun and expansive as Chicago’s Lakefront is, Adult Playgrounds should also focus on the needs of specific individuals. That’s exactly what MOMentum does. They are a non-profit supporter of outdoor fitness parks focused on helping parents stay active while their children play. The parent-friendly adult playgrounds located in three parks throughout Washington State (Marymoor Park, Les Gove Park, and Bitter Lake Reservoir Park), each feature low-impact cardio equipment and strengthening machines. By offering parents the ability to be physically active while remaining attentive to their children playing nearby, MOMentum’s adult playground equipment encourages an increase in playground usage by fun-loving folks of all ages.
7. Louisville’s Mega Cavern
There are, of course, places where you might want to leave the younger kids at home. Mega Cavern in Louisville, KY is such a place (though, to be clear, kids are allowed with adult supervision). Mega Cavern is an adventure park with a pretty big twist. Everything is located beneath approximately 100 feet of thick limestone. The expansive man-made cavern features the world’s only fully underground zipline course, a physically and mentally challenging ropes course (also fully underground), and a 320,000 square foot bike park with 45 separate trails of various difficulty levels (yes, all underground). Challenging and fun, Mega Cavern is a great example of the unique places and playgrounds available to adults.
8. Dig This Construction Equipment Playground in Las Vegas
If digging around in the sandbox was more your speed as a child, there’s no reason to change your ways now. Trade in the Tonka trucks for real-world fun at the Dig This Adult Playground in Las Vegas. Featuring Caterpillar D5G Track-Type Bulldozers along with Caterpillar 3I5CL Hydraulic Excavators, this playground invites you to spend your day building mounds, digging trenches, pushing and stacking 2,000 pound tires, along with competitive challenges such as “Bucket Basketball.” Digging in the sand has never been this much fun!
9. Atlanta’s Historic Banning Mills Adventure Park
Getting down and dirty is, of course, not everyone’s idea of a good time. The more adventurous at heart can climb, walk, and soar through the air at the Historic Banning Mills Adventure Resort. Featuring the world’s longest zipline canopy tour, the world’s tallest free standing climbing wall, an aerial adventure challenge park (picture a ropes course in the sky), horseback riding, kayaking tours, scenic hiking trails, and more, there’s plenty to do for those who love to get out into nature and have some fun. It’s all for a good cause too. The many adventures offered serve to help support historic preservation and nature conservation efforts throughout 1500 acres of the Snake Creek Gorge area.
10. Watson Adventures Scavenger Hunts
If a pristine forest can offer fun-filled adventures, why not turn a whole city into a playground for adults? Great idea! Started in Los Angeles, and now organized in an increasing number of U.S. cities, Watson Adventures creates challenging scavenger hunts that help illuminate the historical significance and hidden gems present in the world around us. Private and public scavenger hunts make generous use of museums, libraries, and both well-known and off-the-beaten-path landmarks located throughout a metropolitan area. The benefits of interacting with our surroundings are well established, and this includes urban environments as well. Turning our favorite cityscapes into challenging and fun adult playgrounds is a great way stay active while having fun.
11. Boston’s Lawn on D
Sometimes you don’t need a whole city to have fun, often just a good swing will do. Created as an experimental outdoor space, Boston’s Lawn on D is designed to test ideas for developing fun environments for grown-ups. The adult playground has been successful far beyond expectations. Local residents continue to flock to the color-changing hoop swings that invite interaction. There are also friendly games of cornhole, frisbee, bocce ball, and ping-pong to enjoy as well. Local food trucks, an outdoor beer garden, and live music help keep the atmosphere festive and fun.
12. Playground for Seniors in La Marque, Texas
As we’ve seen, adult playgrounds can take-on many different shapes and forms. The ability to play creatively should be available to children of all ages. Playground equipment designed for those entering their more senior years helps to keep adults physically fit and facilitates the enjoyment of an active social life. The adult playground for seniors located in Galveston County, Texas features equipment developed to increase balance and coordination while having fun too.
Adult Playgrounds and You
Well designed, environmentally friendly, and aesthetically pleasing playground equipment should be an available resource for everyone’s benefit at all ages and stages of life. Nearly everyone could benefit from getting out there and taking advantage of the adult playgrounds available in their area. We know playground equipment offers extensive physical, intellectual, emotional and behavioral benefits. A thoughtfully-planned playground can inspire hours of activities that encourage active movement, creative exploration, and the development of social skills. Plus they’re fun! If you can, we recommend getting out and enjoying one today.