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Playground Crawl - Free School Holiday Activity

Home > Melbourne > Outdoor | Free | Playgrounds | School Holiday Activities | School Holidays
by Neil Follett (subscribe)
I'm a retired photographer living in Lilydale mainly researching and writing on Australian aviation history. Now writing more on general subjects.
Published September 2nd 2019
They can swing, climb, slide & enjoy
Organised school holiday activities can be expensive, especially if you have several participants. A no-cost activity is to take the kids on a playground crawl. That is, visit four or five playgrounds on the one day.

How to find them? Select your local area, or anywhere in Melbourne, and open your Melways street directory at your selected location and look for the little green areas that have "play" marked in them.

Some playgrounds are large.

As an example, I selected the Glen Waverley area, which is close to the centre of the Melbourne metropolitan area. One page covers an area five by four kilometres and I counted 15 green areas with playgrounds.

A swinging time will be had.

To add to the excitement and joy of such an outing, offer your charges a small treat after each playground visit. A piece of fruit or a lucky dip bag with small edible treats will do the trick.

Themed playground
Some have a theme.

Come lunchtime, you can have a picnic lunch which you have brought along. You can even get your children's input into organising the picnic lunch, a good lesson in teaching them how to pre-plan and organise things.

Some have amazing items.

I can vouch for the enjoyment the kids will get from the playground excursions. To take photos for some WeekendNotes articles, I recently took my two grandchildren on such an outing. They showed genuine excitement on arriving at each playground and seeing different playground playthings.

Play ground
Two play areas in the one park.

The downside for the above activity was the kids decided that lunch at McDonald's was just the reward for them. I had forgotten how much an eight-year-old can eat!

If you can get your children to participate in every aspect of planning your playground excursion, both them and yourself will find it a worthwhile experience.

Rope climber
Climbing items are popular.

Only have one or two children? Then ask each one to bring a friend, as that will double their enjoyment.

Rope climber
Rope climbers are very popular.

Some playgrounds have one or two basketball hoops which will keep older children amused, so don't forget their basketball.

Basketball hoop in background.

Many playgrounds have seats for parents to keep watch on their charges. Bring a book or magazine, and a thermos of coffee and join them in enjoying the day. And don't forget to bring water for the kids as playing can be thirst inducing.

Rope play
Many play grounds offer rope items.

An added attraction is that some playgrounds have short walks nearby and may even have a small wetlands area, providing some wildlife experience for the young ones.

Play ground
Some are small.

Definitely a free outing, albeit for the cost of a couple of litres of petrol.
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