Safety Features all Indoor Playgrounds Should Have

indoor playground MapleWe all have those memories of times when fun and games ended in tears, though for some of us in Maple they are no longer just memories but an everyday reality! We know that as parents your first and foremost concern is for the safety and well-being of your children. That is why we created this list of safety considerations to help avoid mishaps, or at least to ensure that the mishaps are nothing worse than a valuable lesson for your child.

Indoor Playground Safety Considerations

  • Safe Play: Common sense is worth repeating; No roughhousing on moving equipment. Go down slides feet-first. Make sure that trampolines (not suitable for children under 6, by the way) have plenty of overhead clearance, soft surrounds and no holes or protruding springs.
  • Adult Supervision: Young kids can’t always gauge distances correctly or foresee dangerous consequences on their own. This also applies to older kids who are especially fond of testing their limits. It is therefore necessary to ensure that your indoor playground always has a supervising adult who can see all areas of the playground and is ready to deal with emergencies.
  • Surfaces: Cushioned or shock absorbent surfacing should extend at least 6 feet beyond equipment. Surfaces that are on the harder and rougher end of the spectrum should be reserved for kids who are old enough to deal with a few harmless knocks and scrapes or avoid them altogether.
  • First Aid: Be prepared for injuries. Along with the proper emergency procedures, playground staff should be properly trained in paediatric first aid since first aid for children isn’t necessarily the same as first aid for adults. If your child has a condition that requires constant observation and specialist treatment such as diabetes, epilepsy, allergies or similar then you should let the playground staff know. Depending on what it is, our playground staff in Maple may be able keep a stock of spare medication for your child, just in case.
  • Clothing: Indoor playgrounds generally don’t have clothing restrictions for their patrons, but as a parent it is important for you to ensure that whatever your child is wearing will not cause them harm in a playground accident. This will change as kids become more able with age, but as a general rule of thumb it is a good idea to avoid wearing clothes with drawstrings or any kind of jewellery such as necklaces, rings or bracelets while at the playground. These can accidentally get caught on parts of the playground, which can be quite distressing if not painful.

This is by no means an exhaustive list of safety considerations; you could probably add quite a few more points without thinking too hard. However, if you still have any lingering questions on how to keep your young ones safe without ruining the fun for them then please call us or better yet, come in and talk to us if you happen to find yourself in the Maple area.

Your Indoor Playground Checklist

Indoor Playgrounds Richmond HillAs winter approaches in Richmond Hill many parents will be thinking of ways for their children to expend their energy and indulge their natural curiosity without freezing to death. Whether it’s a birthday treat, a spot of crisis aversion or time set aside for the children to play and learn with you and other children, indoor playgrounds are a fun and safe place for children to test their limits.
Important Things to Consider For Indoor Playgrounds

  • Safety: We know that as a parent this is one of your foremost priorities. Make sure that you are satisfied with the condition of the equipment. Ask about the level of staff training as well as the policies and procedures in place to ensure that mishaps are dealt with properly or avoided altogether.
  • Equipment: The toys and equipment should be age appropriate. If the playground is enjoyed by children of different age groups, then the equipment should provide the children with the level of challenge and fun that is appropriate for their age while being safe for all concerned. Sandboxes, shock-absorbent surfacing and open-ended equipment are staples of a well-equipped indoor playground.
  • Activities: There’s more to playgrounds than the equipment. Good playgrounds are places where the only thing limiting kids is their imagination. Playgrounds can also stretch and stimulate children’s imagination with educational activities such as workshops, special events and themes.
  • Location: The playground may be a way of averting crisis, so you certainly don’t want the trip to and from the playground itself to turn into a crisis. Make sure that the playground is a convenient or at least tolerable distance for travel. It is also helpful to have other amenities such as shops and child friendly restaurants nearby. Richmond Hill is a kid friendly neighbourhood where you can be sure that your little one will be able to easily meet, play and make friends with other kids.
  • Opening Times: It would be a shame to rock up to the playground only to find it closed, which may even result in you getting an earful from the little one! Most playgrounds open from early morning until around noon during weekdays and from mid-morning until the late afternoon on weekends. There may also be specific times for certain activities that are designed for specific ages. Be sure to check and confirm before you set off.
  • Facilities: Play can get messy – and so it should! Just as it is important to let kids have their messy fun to learn from, it is important that the playground has toilets, wash rooms and water fountains that are safe and conveniently placed for both adults and children. Adults should be able to grab a coffee or a bite to eat and have comfortable seating for when they simply want to watch while their children run riot.

Play And Party is more than happy to answer any questions that you may have. Feel free to call us or better yet, come and visit us in Richmond Hill!

How to Plan the Perfect party at an Indoor Playground

indoor playground auroraSo you – or rather your child – would like to have a birthday party at an indoor playground. Awesome! Playgrounds are an excellent choice of venue for hosting children’s parties for many reasons; the staff are experienced in dealing with children, there is little or no setting up and cleaning up for you to do and there are already plenty of features and equipment to keep the children entertained. With all of these factors combined, indoor playgrounds can certainly lend themselves to themed parties that really set young imaginations free; just imagine creating a pirate lagoon at your house in Aurora versus the playground. Yup, thought so. Below is a short list of things to consider for the party.

Planning Your Indoor Playground Party

  • Activities: Ask the venue about any packages or party specials that are available upon request. The venue will almost certainly be able to help with booking entertainers if required.
  • Themes: Don’t get us wrong, playgrounds are great for kids just the way they are, but if you’re not planning a theme for the party you may be missing a trick! Discuss details with the venue as they may have their own decorations. Some venues allow very limited outside decorations to be brought in or don’t allow balloons so it’s best to check first.
  • Food: Plan the menu. If you have specific dietary requirements for the party then you should coordinate these with the venue, who may be able to help you to prepare food onsite or arrange catering for you. Some venues allow you to make all of your own catering arrangements and bring in food and drinks from outside.
  • Scheduling: Timing and coordination is crucial for these kinds of events. Make sure that your desired venue is available during your desired time slot well in advance. Certain venues may be willing to be flexible with their opening and closing times for the convenience of you and your guests.
  • Payment: Clarify all costs with the venue beforehand. This may include such things as upfront deposits, final payments, member / walk-in rates for guests. This is your opportunity to negotiate a good deal!
  • Get Help: Line up any help you may need well in advance. Whether you need help with camera work, music, setting up, catering or adult supervision you should speak to the venue first about the kind of assistance that they do or don’t provide.
  • Multimedia: If you intend to stream music, have a live web broadcast or simply wish to allow the adults present to have internet connectivity for their devices you should ensure that the WiFi available in the required area has a strong enough signal. If you wish to record the event on camera then you may want to ask the venue if the camera and post-production work is included in any of their packages.

Whether you live in the Aurora itself or any of the surrounding areas, please feel free to come in and talk to us about your ideas and requirements for your upcoming party!

Trends in Birthday Parties for 2016: What’s Hot and What’s Not

Birthday Parties Newmarket Kids love parties but they also want new. Because of this you reuse party ideas and themes at your own peril. No one who’s worked for weeks on what should be the perfect kid’s Birthday Parties Newmarket wants to hear disappointed reactions when Hagrid arrives to hand out presents. In order to stave off theme-fatigue it’s important to keep up with what’s trending in kid’s party ideas.

The Latest in Kid’s Birthday Parties Newmarket and Beyond

Kids are completely of their time and they want something either currently trending in the media or the most incredibly unique idea ever. Here’s a bunch of party related themes and ideas that will hit the scene in 2016.

  • “The Force Awakens” party – “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” is the biggest thing since, well, “Star Wars”. While Rey and Finn are getting a lot of attention maybe the real reason kids have been going back to see the film over and over is a little droid called BB-8. Radio controlled BB-8 replicas are all the rage and can be the centerpiece of your Force Awakens theme party.
  • Food truck! – Food trucks have become “a thing” and smart party planners are building parties around them. Hire a popular food truck for the day and have it roll up to the party at a particular time, (stopping in a safe location). The kids then line up to partake of the tasty offerings and you have a memorable party on your hands.
  • Photo booths – Photo booths are tailor-made for the selfie age and will liven up any party. Set up a colorful background, decorate it with decals or cut-outs then lay out makeup, costumes, wigs and more. Put an adult on the camera and prepare for zaniness. You can use the photo booth in concert with any larger theme or as a stand-alone idea.
  • Crowd fund a gift – Instead of getting the child of honor a bunch of smaller gifts set up a crowdfunding page and collect funds from relatives to purchase a single larger gift like an Xbox console or bicycle. Of course the crowdfunding campaign will have to be kept secret but it’s a digital age way to get the birthday girl or boy something they’ll never forget.
  • Oversized balloons – In 2016 balloons will make a major comeback at birthday parties Newmarket. Instead of dozens or even hundreds of small balloons have 1 enormous balloon for each child (and backups in case a few balloons pop during the party). At the end of the festivities let the kids take them home as parting gifts.

Kid’s birthday parties Newmarket are going to break new ground in the coming year and holding a party at Play and Party will ramp up the fun even more. We offer a range of affordable party packages that can include use of our fully equipped soft play area, private movie theater and more. Celebrate your child’s special day at Play and Party and create memories you’ll both cherish for a lifetime. Call us on 289-234-7529 to find out more.

Birthday Parties Markham: At Home Vs. Hired Venues

Birthday Parties MarkhamIf you’re waffling between wanting to host your child’s birthday party at home and wanting to host it at a third-party venue you’re not alone. Both have their advantages and disadvantages and both will wind up costing you time and money. In this post we’ll take a quick look at the issue and see if we can determine which approach is best.

The Best Venue for Hosting Birthday Parties Markham

There are a lot of things to consider when deciding whether to hold your child’s birthday party at home or at a third-party venue. Here are some of the pros and cons you’ll want to weigh.

Hosting at home: Pros

  • Control – When you host at home you call the shots. If that’s important to you you’ll likely want to keep the party in-house.
  • Affordability – No doubt birthday parties Markham are less expensive to hold at home. But time is money too and planning and preparation will take time.
  • Safety – You know your kids are safe at home, while sending them out to any third party establishment carries risks; even if they’re slight.
  • Convenience – You can do much of the planning and preparation from your kitchen while enjoying a cup of tea.

Hosting at home: Cons

  • Impact – Kids make a mess. You’ll need to make sure valuables are out of harm’s way and may have to cover furniture or other objects.
  • Nursing duties – Young kids eat too much, get excited and throw up. Another kids get stomach aches. Maybe another falls and hits her head; which brings us to…
  • Liability – If someone’s child gets seriously hurt during a party in your home you could be facing very angry parents with a very good lawyer.

Hosting at a venue: Pros

  • No cleanup – This by itself is often enough to convince people to use a third party venue for their kid’s birthday party.
  • Lots of play options – Most venues that host kids birthday parties in Markham have play areas onsite that the kids will really appreciate.
  • Professional staff – The venue will come with professionally trained staff who will keep an eye on the kids better than you could all by yourself.
  • Emergency preparedness – Professional hosting venues have procedures in place to handle medical and other emergencies.
  • Liability coverage – Any hosting venue worth its salt will have robust liability coverage in case of accidents.

Hosting at a venue: Cons

  • Price – It will cost you more to have your party at a third party venue.
  • Limitations – When the venue says your time is up your time is up.
  • Drop off and pick up – You’ll need to make sure your kids are dropped off and picked up by yourself or someone you trust.

Parents with busy schedules appreciate the time savings and convenience of having their child’s birthday celebration hosted at Play and Party Childcare Center where we have the hosting of birthday parties down to an art form. Give us a call today on 289-234-7529 to find out more about holding your child’s next birthday bash at Play and Party.

Party Bags: Are They a Must Have Element of Birthday Parties?

Birthday Parties Aurora Is it possible that something associated with kid’s birthday parties Aurora could be <gulp> controversial? You wouldn’t think so but, as it turns out, party bags may actually be flirting with that dubious distinction. It turns out that for every parent who is more than willing to hand out party bags there’s a parent who believes them to be completely unnecessary. So who’s right?

Should Birthday Parties Aurora Feature Party Bags?

The great party bag debate seems to center around 2 main issues: 1) Are they necessary? and, if so 2), What’s appropriate party bag filler? In this post we’ll try to come up with some answers.

Question 1) Are party bags necessary?

  • Yes: Those who feel party bags are a necessary element of kid’s birthday parties Aurora think that not distributing these parting gifts is bad form or a sign of ingratitude on the part of the hosts. They feel their child’s contribution to the party’s success should be acknowledged and party bags are a way to do that. Fair point.
  • No: Those opposed to party bags cite the undeniable fact that much of their contents winds up on the floor of the car during the ride home or in the waste basket shortly after. In addition they point to the fact that they’ve already supplied cake, ice cream, drinks, hats, balloons, entertainment and more for the children and that should be enough. Again, fair point.

Winner: Party bags, like piñatas and clowns, are one more possible element of a child’s birthday party and should not be considered mandatory. That said, if you decide to go the party bag route you’re left to fend with question 2:

Question 2) What’s appropriate party bag filler?

  • Anything and everything: In some circles party bag contents have gotten out of control with kids receiving everything from mobile phones to tickets to professional sporting events. Most of the world however tends to think that various dollar store trinkets and candy bars are more than adequate filler for the average party bag.
  • Keep the plastic and sugar: On the other hand there are parents who feel that plastic trinkets do little but add to the waste already choking the environment. They also don’t want their kids to be eating candy at every opportunity. For these parents granola bars and fruit snacks and even something like Play Doh that encourages creativity are preferred.

Winner: Lavish party bag fillers seem more than a little short sighted. Where do you go from mobile phones? Stocks and bonds? It makes more sense to keep things simple, be true to yourself and let the chips fall where they may.

Play and Party Childcare Center is one of the most popular venues for hosting children’s birthday parties Aurora. Our highly trained and dedicated staff make sure everyone has a great time and stays safe throughout. If you’re looking for a venue to host your child’s next birthday party give us a call on 289-234-7529 and find out about our different birthday party packages.

What You Get With an Indoor Playground that You Don’t with Other Attractions for Kids

Today’s world is a complex, fast-paced and often dangerous place. Parents are busier than ever before working long hours in the quest to provide a better life for their families. At the same time they need to find safe, healthy places for their kids to play that are also lots of fun. Letting the kids just run off to the park like grandma and grandpa did is not such a great idea anymore. Yet at the same time you can’t just have the kids running through the home office while you’re trying to work or sitting in front of the TV all day. As a result, more and more parents are discovering the many benefits of the indoor playground.

Indoor Playground Advantages

These professionally run centres offer safe, supervised, super-fun environments for daily play or birthday parties where your child is shielded from the hazards of the outdoors as well as the ever changing, often harsh Toronto weather. Their main advantages include:

  • Accountability – You know where your child is at all times. There’s no danger your son or daughter will wander off, no need to worry about them encountering strangers on the street, no need to try and track them down because they’re late getting home from their friends house. You know exactly where they are and you know they’re having fun.
  • Safety – You also know they’re at an indoor location with limited access 30and a trained staff of professionals overseeing them. But that’s not all: they’re also playing on and around some of the safest playground equipment ever made. Today’s state of the art indoor playground sets are designed to minimize the hazards while maximizing fun. No more park swings with their rusty steel chains. No more skateboarders flying around endangering everyone.
  • Fitness and Fun – While safety and accountability are extremely important, kids really just want to have fun; which is what draws them to places like the arcade and the park to begin with. To that end the indoor playground offers an incredible range of exciting, engaging play setups outdoor parks or friend’s backyards just can’t match. Organized activities too can teach kids valuable lessons about sharing and cooperation they’ll never learn playing video games all day.

It should also be mentioned that special needs kids often thrive in the safe, controlled atmosphere of the indoor playground. Many safety and security issues that can prevent them from joining in outdoor fun are swept away in the indoor environment and many of them experience for the first time the carefree excitement of just being a kid.

An indoor play facility is the ideal place for high-energy kids that lack safe, clean, fun places to play. They’re also perfect for other kids who love to engage in fun group activities with their friends and they can really help parents who are trying to break their child’s unhealthy fixation on video games. Parents looking for new, innovative ideas for their kids’ birthday parties will also find these play centres to be perfect settings for parties their kids will never forget.

Play and Party indoor playground and centre for birthday centre was created to bring entertainment for the whole family, a vision of becoming a place of fun and happy memories. We have hosted birthday parties for kids in Richmond Hill, Markham, Aurora, Stouffville, King City, Maple and New Market. Visit us on Google+.

Games that are Sure to Go Down a Storm at Birthday Parties

The best kids birthday parties are part wackiness/part controlled chaos and nothing gets the smiles and laughter going and keeps the boredom at bay better during a party than some tried and true party games. Kids love games for as many reasons as there are kids but mostly because they focus the mind and ramp up the fun! Creating new games from whole cloth may be asking too much of a party host, but it’s also unnecessary since there’s already a reliable stock of sure fire hits out there to choose from.

Great Games Make Great Birthday Parties

Because our job is providing a safe, healthy indoor environment for kids to play and have their birthday parties, we’re going to focus on games that are either designed specifically for the indoors or ones that can be adapted to an indoor playground.

  • Statues – Spread the kids out across the room (the more the merrier). When the music starts the kids launch into the silliest dances they can imagine. When the music stops they freeze where they are. The last person to freeze is out. If everyone freezes at the same time then the first one to move is out. Continue until there is only one “statue” left.
  • Blind Obstacle Course – Perfect for an indoor playground and a big favourite at kids birthday parties! In this game the kids are split up into teams of 2. One is blindfolded, the other is their guide, while one of the staff is trusted to keep time. When the signal is given the guide must shepherd the blindfolded child using only words through a fun but safe course that requires them to go over, under and through various obstacles until they cross the finish line. Whichever team finishes the course in the shortest time wins!
  • Ping Pong Toss – Another big favourite! For this game make 5 rows of 5 plastic cups with each row given a value. The row closest to the kids is 1 point, furthest away 5 points. Now give each child 5 ping pong balls and tell them to try and toss them into the cups to score points. Whoever scores the most wins. If there is a tie score the kids that tied go another round until there is a winner.
  • Keep the Ball in the Air – Kids are arranged in a circle and a large, light ball is tapped into the air to one of the kids by a staff member. That child taps the ball up in the air toward another child (can be anyone) who must then tap it to someone else. Any child that misses the ball is out. Likewise if they catch it or hit it out of the circle. Keep going until the last child misses. The survivor is the winner.

Kid’s birthday parties and games are like apples and cinnamon: they just go together. So if you’re looking for a way to stave off the doldrums and turn the party spirit up to 11 give these traditional party games a try.

Play and Party indoor playground and centre for birthday centre was created to bring entertainment for the whole family, a vision of becoming a place of fun and happy memories. We have hosted birthday parties for kids in Richmond Hill, Markham, Aurora, Stouffville, King City, Maple and New Market. Visit us on Google+.

Factors to Compare When Assessing the Different Indoor Playground Options in Your Area

If you live in a modern urban area like Greater Toronto where do you find a place for your children to play that’s both fun and safe? Many parents in search of an answer to this question have discovered indoor playgrounds and their increasing popularity is testament to the fundamental soundness of the concept. Still, it can be difficult to determine which of these facilities may be right for your child and so to help you make an informed decision we present here a few questions to ask and things to consider when choosing an indoor playground.

Finding the Right Indoor Playground

  • Safety – The number 1 concern when it comes to leaving your child anywhere you are not is safety. To set your mind at ease you may want to ask some or all of these questions: Who is in charge? What are their qualifications? Are there security cameras in the facility? Is there a qualified health professional on site at all times? What are the procedures in case of a health emergency?
  • Size of Facility – Kids are bundles of nearly limitless energy looking for ways to release that energy. They need to run, jump, climb, run some more, toss things, catch things and then run some more. Make sure any indoor playground is in a large enough space to accommodate kids being kids.
  • Number of Kids – On an average day how many children will be using the facility at any one time? Is there adequate staff to handle all the kids and give them personal attention if they need it? Are there limits on how many kids the facility will accept?
  • Equipment and Activities – What type of playground sets are available and are they new or dog-eared? Are these playground sets age appropriate for your kids (some are designed for older kids while some are designed for toddlers and the like)? What type of organized activities are available? Are their facilities available for birthday parties?
  • Location – You may want to chose a facility that’s as close as possible to either your work or home, if only to cut down on reaction time should there be an emergency. Also, you’ll probably want to take a tour of the surrounding neighbourhood and, while you’re at it, check if there are police and fire stations nearby.
  • Hours of Operation – Different facilities have different hours of operation. Some open early, some later. Some have rigid schedules, some are more flexible. Some have special hours for birthday parties. If you get stuck at work or in traffic and can’t be there at the usual time what happens? Is there a financial penalty for pickup after normal hours of operation?

There’s a lot to consider when choosing an indoor playground for your child, but with the growing number of these facilities it’s a good bet you’ll find one that’s right for you. The important thing is to ask plenty of questions during the interview process so that you can make an intelligent decision based on facts.

Play and Party indoor playground and centre for birthday centre was created to bring entertainment for the whole family, a vision of becoming a place of fun and happy memories. We have hosted birthday parties for kids in Richmond Hill, Markham, Aurora, Stouffville, King City, Maple and New Market. Visit us on Google+.

Essential Elements to Successful Kids Birthday Parties

Kids want to have fun. Especially on their birthday. They want to be the centre of attention, get nice gifts and have a ball with their friends. So, when planning birthday parties for kids how do you ensure that they’ll not only get their share of cake, but that they’ll get to eat it too by having the kind of party they’ve been dreaming of? The secret to success in this case can be summed up in one word: planning. Simply setting out some tables and chairs and blowing up a few balloons won’t guarantee a fun time for all. No, you need to have an idea of what makes a successful party click and then set out to do just that.

Kid’s Birthday Parties: What to Include

Now that you’ve dedicated yourself to planning the ultimate birthday bash, what are the elements you’ll need to cover to ensure smiles all around?

  • The Theme – Let’s start with the big picture. Themed birthday parties can be ginormous fun if the theme is carefully considered and easy to embrace. Having 1972 as a party theme probably isn’t going to go over very well in kidsville, whereas superheroes can keep the fun cranking from beginning to end.
  • Delicious Food – Kids look forward to birthday parties as one time they aren’t going to be told to eat their vegetables. You don’t have to serve them refined sugar patties with chocolate frosting but the food served should reflect the tastes of the birthday girl or boy while retaining some semblance of nutritional value. Pizza is a good example of a delicious middle ground.
  • Plenty of Beverages – Make sure there’s a variety of beverages on hand for the kids to choose from. Soda and fruit juices are party stalwarts but you can also bring out the blender and make delicious and nutritious smoothies for everyone too.
  • Activities/Games – If you hold your party at an indoor playground your choice of games and activities will be greatly increased which can make everything flow smoother. Treasure hunts, sack races and obstacle courses are all party favourites while bringing in clowns and maybe even a magician will get the kids attention and keep them involved.
  • Music – While the kids are working their way around the obstacle course nothing keeps things lively like some wacky party music. Keep a selection of different types on hand to fit various situations and you’re sure to keep things moving along.
  • Party Favours – Party favours are a great way to make everyone feel special and involved. They’re an inexpensive, simple and fun way for kids to remember the party long after the last balloon has popped.

Whether at your home or at an indoor playground including some or all of these elements in kid’s birthday parties will create fun memories for everyone who attends. Just remember to keep things moving, keep things colourful and fun, provide the unexpected and put safety first and you’ll be good to go.

Play and Party indoor playground and centre for birthday centre was created to bring entertainment for the whole family, a vision of becoming a place of fun and happy memories. We have hosted birthday parties for kids in Richmond Hill, Markham, Aurora, Stouffville, King City, Maple and New Market. Visit us on Google+.