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Froggy Playground, Orleigh Park

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by Michelle MacFarlane (subscribe)
Brisbane writer and busy mum of two boys. See my parenting articles at www.brisbaneschild.com.au and www.kidsonthecoast.com.au.
Published January 2nd 2012
Froggy playground photo by Michelle MacFarlane
The lower section of the playground
I'm not sure if this playground has an official name, but everybody I know always refers to it as the 'Froggy Playground', on account of its frog-tongue slippery slide.

It's in a lovely spot on the river at West End, and I took my kids there a lot when they were little. So I was sad to see that the playground was closed after the floods in early 2011. The top part of the playground re-opened a while ago, but repairs to the lower section were only completed in late December.

I noticed that the entire playground was open again last weekend when I took my sons for a scooter-ride along the river. My sons are too old for froggy slides now (which meant that I couldn't get a photo of the slide -- sorry). But the playground brought back lots of nice memories, and I thought those of you with younger kids might be interested to know about it.

It's a medium-sized playground in the shade of large, beautiful trees. The upper section has a slide, climbing frame, and monkey bar. The middle section has the frog-tongue slide, a see-saw, a few rockers, and some fun concrete figures of ladybugs and the like.

Froggy playground photo by Michelle MacFarlane
The top section of the playground
The section closest to the river (which has just reopened) has swings and another climbing platform. A track suitable for trikes, scooters, bikes, etc runs around the entire playground, with bumpy bits and other fun stuff for littlies who are learning to ride.

The river is close by, offering cooling breezes on even the hottest days. You need to keep an eye on your children (as you do everywhere) but Council has helped by putting a fence between the playground and the riverbank to at least slow down a running toddler so that you can catch them. Toilets are close by and there's drinking water available.

Froggy playground photo by Michelle MacFarlane
Picnic shelters & barbies nearby
Near the playground are large grassy areas and picnic tables where you can eat or relax while you watch your child. There are picnic shelters with barbecues nearby, and these are popular for birthday parties. If you have kids of mixed ages, there's also a flat grassy area a little past the playground that is great for ball games, and you'll often see older kids kicking a footy or soccer ball there.

If you're looking to make a day of it, the playground is a five- to ten-minute walk from the West End CityCat stop. I often used to catch the CityCat with my sons to get to the playground, as this made it a better adventure for them (and was less stressful than driving for me).

Alberto's shot cafe photo by michelle macfarlane
Alberto's Shot Cafe is close
If you're looking to buy food close by (or just in need of a life-saving coffee), Alberto's Shot cafe is not far away, just up Montague Road. It has outdoor tables and friendly staff who can cope fine with small kids. They have a range of paninis etc that can be adapted to younger tastebuds, and serve very good coffee.

froggy playground photo by michelle macfarlane
Open spaces for ballgames
All in all, I think the froggy playground is one of the sweetest in Brisbane for under-5s, and its scenic location is one of its greatest pluses. I always felt calmer, cooler and happier after a trip there in summer, and ít's pretty at any time of year. If you haven't been there, or you've been waiting for it to re-open, now's a great time to visit.

PS You can take your dog with you to the playground, but they must stay on their lead.
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Why? For a lovely riverside playground for under 5s
When: Whenever you like
Where: Hill End Terrace, West End
Cost: Free
Your Comment
I think you might be talking about Rocks Riverside Park in Jindalee?
by pamab (score: 0|3) 2819 days ago
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