Saturday, November 20, 2010

A nice destination in cooler months: Powel Public School

Playground: Samuel Powel Public School
Location: Powelton between 35th & 36th
Date visited: 11/14/10

Equipment: Two playsets:
  • Smaller has various types of climbing, two plastic slides (one short and straight, one taller and spiral), and a store window playspace underneath.
  • Larger has two tall plastic slides (one straight with moguls and one curved and irregular), monkey bars of varying height, hanging bars, and a steep climbing wall.
Also here is a long circular stone wall surrounding a tree stump, both of which provide for additional play opportunities.
Ages: 1-12
Surface: rubbery around equipment; woodchips elsehwere
Shade(0-3): 0
Water: N
Other: blacktop area with lots of painted games, maps, etc.; picnic tables
Access: open?

Impressions: Nicely designed newish playground offers fun for a range of ages in a compact space. The open blacktop and picnic tables make this a nice place for an extended visit, and an adjacent playspace across 35th fills in with more choices and a couple of bucket swings (the key absence here). Nice for a fall afternoon in West Philly.
Overall rating: 8

Good for older kids: Drew School playground

Playground: Drew School
Location: Powelton & 38th
Date visited: 11/14/10

Equipment: One medium playset, with three metal slides (paired straight and single spiral), monkey bars, a stretch of elevated "stepping stones," a jumping pad, and various climbing (including an unusual kind of climbing wall/ladder, ascended with the help of a chain rope).
material: modern resin and metal; scale: large blacktop area with compact play structure
Ages: 2-12
Surface: rubbery around equipment; blacktop elsewhere
Shade(0-3): 0
Water: N
Other: large blacktop area, including some painted games
Access: open gates (dawn to dusk?)

Impressions: Playset in a large blacktop schoolyard near a muralled school offers an interesting mix of play challenges, probably better aimed at slightly older kids; our nearly 3-year-old veteran explorer couldn't really take on the stepping stones or climbing wall and was nervous about the bouncy platform/jumping pad. No swings, and little for the youngest set, but good for some challenges, and/or with a ball or skateboard in tow. Also somewhat fun for goofy parents. :)
Presumably busy on school days...
Overall rating: 7+