Monday, 17 March 2014

In the Jungle (The Lion Sleeps Tonight) - Indoor Playground Review

In case you didn't know, it's still really cold outside in Toronto. The kids got outside for a few days last week and then the deep freeze hit again, just in time for the weekend.  

Behold, hopefully one of the last for 2014, the winterized version of my playground review series, The Indoor Playground Review!  Come on spring.

My park review disclaimer: If you don't live in the area I hope you enjoy the pics and can use some of the ideas to inspire and explore in your own city. If you have any recommendations for great playgrounds ideally some in Toronto proper (indoor or out or new criteria I haven't thought of) please post a comment on this post or email me:


Location:

3250 Harvester Rd #5, Burlington (you need a car to get there, or to live close enough to walk -it's a 35 minute walk from the Go Station)

Lil' Monkeys Indoor Playground Inc. Review
 Overview of the play structure

Parking:
There is a decent amount of parking in the lot, but you may have to walk a ways if it's busy.


Theme of Park:
Jungle themed indoor playground.  The largest indoor playground in Southern Ontario

Cost:
$10 per child for kids 2-4 years old, children 5-12 pay $11.99, kids under 1 are free when with a sibling.  (We used a coupon from the Toronto Entertainment Book that got us 25% off one entry on the weekend).  Parents/Guardians/Sitters (over 16) are free - maximum 2 guardians per child.

Lil' Monkeys Indoor Playground Inc. Review
 One of the climbing walls


 Variety of Equipment for different ages:
This playground is open to kids aged one year to twelve years old.  There are two toddler themed areas for kids aged one to three and the climbing walls, giant play structure, indoor mini basket ball court and arcade is for older kids.  You know that Goodlife Fitness commercial about trying to stay fit so you can actively play with your kids?  Well Chris and I could relate to the need to stay fit to keep up after tagging along behind Jack in the giant climbing structure. 

Lil' Monkeys Indoor Playground Inc. Review
Jack Climbing


Lil' Monkeys Indoor Playground Inc. Review
 The Arcade


Best Part(s) of the Park:
The variety of things to do for kids at almost any age.  After a while, when Molly got bored, we discovered a room at the end of the playground called "the library" which had a variety of books, a play house and kitchen toys for kids who don't want extreme acrobatics for their entire visit.  There are large couches for supervising adults to unwind and watch from a distance.  At the front cash they posted a sign that stated a series of eight visit passes may qualify for the government of Canada's children fitness tax credit.  As a parent in a chaotic setting I also appreciated their security precautions to help keep kids safe.  They track a families last name with the entrance ID bracelets to ensure the kids leave who they came in with.  Chris, completely oblivious to the system, nearly got tackled at the door by trying to get Jack out of there quickly and quietly when Jack didn't want to leave.  He later admitted how a screaming toddler, tucked under the arm of a fast moving adult could raise some red flags.

Lil' Monkeys Indoor Playground Inc. Review
"The Library"

Downfalls:
The atmosphere is a little consumer centric.  There are extra costs for tokens to play the arcade games and win prizes and snacks available which were mostly junky carnival food like pizza and slushies.  Since our kids are toddlers and don't know any better they were easily lured to our car for snacks of dried trail mix and apples.  In a year or so we wouldn't be so lucky.  As the playground is so big it can be a challenge to supervise younger kids, but that is toddler specific.  Chris noticed that in some of the toddler areas sharp corners have been padded with duct tape. 

Lil' Monkeys Indoor Playground Inc. Review
Molly and Spiderman

Overall Rating:
I rate this playground a 3.5/5 based on value of money and distance. It was huge, with something for everyone and I think the kids will get even more out of it in a year or two (and we will go back), but at that time you'd have the added expense of actually letting them play the arcade games* or eating tons of processed sugar, which kind of defeats the purpose of the whole indoor gym.



To Read my review of other indoor playgrounds in Mississauga click here.  To read my indoor playground review from a Toronto centre click here.  If you have suggested playgrounds for me to review, please leave a comment.




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*I don't know how she did this, but my mom convinced us that it was almost as much fun to use our imaginations and just pretend we were playing the video games after we ran through the two quarters she gave each of us.  I think basically because we knew if we complained we'd get zero quarters the next time.

2 comments:

  1. I was looking for playground video for kids and came across those lovely pictures. Just couldn't resist to say how lovely they are and also the cost for the playground seems to be not that high.

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