100 Days of Summer: Week 3

Pirates Ahoy! at LEGOLAND Discovery Center

Land Ho

Join the pirate crew, take part in swashbuckling dance parties, film your own action-packed pirate movie, walk the plank, and pose for themed family photos at LEGOLAND Discovery Center’s Pirates Ahoy! on view through June 20.

From Daring Heights

Tower above Atlanta and take in the views at these attractions.

  • The gondolas at SkyView give you an exciting view of Downtown and a panoramic view of Atlanta.
  • Defy gravity and enjoy the thrill of indoor skydiving at iFly.
  • Head to the top of The Westin Peachtree Plaza for The Sun Dial Restaurant, an upscale restaurant with a 360-degree view of Atlanta.
  • Reach new heights with Treetop Quest, an aerial adventure park with ziplining and treetop obstacles.

Kid Chef

Cultivate your mini chef’s skills at these classes. Kids learn kitchen safety, how to make meals and bake treats.

Become a Technical Wizard

Visit the Computer Museum of America to learn more about technology and computing. Exhibits include an exploration of NASA and Apollo 11-17, a collection of supercomputers, artifacts of the digital past from an abacus to a Game Boy and more.

Up Close with the Animals

Zoo Atlanta’s Wild Encounters allow you to get a one-on-one experience with a fascinating animal. Meet a rhino, an elephant, an Aldabra tortoise, a toucan, a lemur or a giant panda for an  opportunity to delve more into the animal’s life and to learn how they’re cared for.

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10 Ways to Celebrate the Summer Solstice

For those of us in the Northern Hemisphere, June 20 will mark the longest day of 2021, heralding the official start of summer. Use these suggestions as a starting point to spark your own solstice ritual.

Plan a Scavenger Hunt

For smaller children, number or alphabetize clues leading to treats or summer supplies. Consider sunglasses, sunscreen, bug catchers, coupons for an ice cream outing or glow-in-the-dark necklaces. For tweens and teens, try a homemade coupon for a special privilege they have been begging to experience (maybe an hour later curfew or a zip line trip).

Eat Dinner Outside

A backyard barbecue is fun, but add to the festive feel with a change of scenery. Tune into nature on this day – pack a picnic dinner and head to a local park.

Try a Family Sun Salutation

A sun salute is an overall body stretch for the whole family, and kids will be amused while creating the yoga position called downward dog. Here is a simple version.

Make a Flying Wish

Write a wish down on paper and burn it, sending the wish into the sky. If the weather isn’t cooperative, there are wishing papers rise quickly and then disappear, and can be lit indoors. Try one from Flying Wish Paper. Another fun activity is wishing lanterns. Head outside with the family, make a wish and watch as the lantern floats away.

Start Summer Resolutions

Take your lead from the movie “Judy Moody and the Not Bummer Summer” (PG) and see if your family can develop a “Thrill Point List” for summer. What could you add to your list to make the summer of 2021 an exciting time for everyone? Pull out poster board and markers and let the creativity flow.

Stay up Until Dark and Stargaze

Check local observatories for summer solstice events. For novice star searches, borrow a book from the library to help you assess what you’re seeing, or use a free star-finding app such as Star Chart, SkyView or Night Sky Lite.

Rituals Often Involve Water

If nothing else, dip your toes in. How about a family battle using water balloons or squirt guns? Your willingness to let go and have fun can be a signal that the more relaxed days of summer are here.

Get Your Hands Dirty

It’s not too late to plant some produce or flowers. Consider planting in your vegetable garden for a fall harvest or add annuals to your flower garden to mark the occasion.

Bury Any Negatives

Has anyone in the family been struggling with something, such as a habit they want to leave behind? Write down any behaviors or experiences you want to put behind you and bury them. Use the solstice as a restart button.

Invite Friends to Join the Celebration

Remember to try and capture the “we always” when building a new family tradition. Kids love the tradition of “we always eat … ” or “we always do … ” a certain thing on a special day. Maybe you will always start solstice with a pancake breakfast. Ask your children for suggestions and they will likely come up with some fun options.

–Sue LeBreton

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Best Blueberry Farms Around Atlanta

Your family will love picking fresh berries right off the bush just like the classic children’s book, “Blueberries for Sal.” Locations around the Atlanta area offer inexpensive options for picking. Admission and farm activities may be extra.

Come ready to pick as many blueberries as you can collect! Berries are available until the bushes are picked clean, so make sure to call ahead or check websites before visiting. Blueberry conditions change from day to day. Maintain safe social distance practices and wear masks before visiting these farms.

Mercier Orchards

Head to Blue Ridge for Mercier Orchards’ Farm, which plans to have u-pick blueberries starting in June. Take in the beauty of the 300-acre farm with a tractor ride, and stop by the café or market for delicious food and treats. In July, you can also pick blackberries.

Southern Belle Farm

This McDonough farm has a two-acre blueberry patch for pick-your-own, or you can grab pre-picked berries at their market, which also has baked goods, jams, honey, fruit ciders and more. Visit with chickens, donkeys, cows, goats, horses and more at Belle’s Barn. U-pick begins on June 7.

Mitcham Farm

In summer, you can pick your own blueberries or blackberries at this cute farm in Oxford, 45 minutes east of Atlanta. Fresh produce also includes sweet corn, cucumbers, beans, okra, onions, peaches and more. They also sell homemade strawberry jam, local honey, frog jam, preserves and strawberry slushies at their Farm Stand.

Cool Springs Blueberry Farm

Cool Springs Blueberry Farm

Cool Springs Blueberry Farm

This Gainesville farm plans to open for the season on June 19. Blueberries and blackberries are available for u-pick or pre-pick. Enjoy refreshments and browse the gift shop with arts and crafts from local artisans. Blueberry availability for 2021 is limited.

Adams Farm

Since 1805, this family-owned farm in Fayetteville has been a staple for fruits and vegetables. In summer, head here for three varieties of blueberries, two varieties of blackberries and three varieties of raspberries. The market and u-pick fields are open Mondays through Saturdays, and u-pick is projected to run from June 1-Aug. 1.

Tuckaway Blueberry Farm

This family-owned and operated blueberry farm is located in Loganville with more than 500 rabbit eye blueberry bushes. They’re planning to open later in June.

Lone Oak Farms

Lone Oak Farms in Grantville is open seven days a week during blueberry season, which starts in July.

Fleeman’s U-Pick Blueberries

Travel to Winder to pick blueberries at this family-owned farm. Expected to open in mid-June.

These farms will not have blueberries for the 2021 season:

Berry Patch Farms

The history of this Woodstock farm began in 1978 when the owners bought 40 acres of land for blueberries, pumpkins and Christmas trees.

Washington Farms

This Bogart farm offers u-pick blueberries, and you can also grab homemade ice cream or kettle corn. Activities include a cow train, petting zoo, ziplines, wagon rides, games and more for family fun.

DJ’s U-Pick Blueberry Farm

This Lawrenceville farm offers u-pick by the gallon as you peruse the blueberry fields. Kids will love viewing the Scottish Highland Cows, Coco and Rudolph, as well as the goats, and you can even bring bread and veggies to feed them. They’re planning to open the second week of June.

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100 Days of Summer: Week 2

Summer at the Rock at Stone Mountain Park

Summer at the Rock

Starting on June 12, enjoy special summer entertainment and the nightly Lasershow Spectacular in Mountainvision at Stone Mountain Park’s Summer at the Rock. Performances include an action-packed Canine Thrill Show and an interactive magic show from Aaron Radatz, and experience attractions, such as Scenic Railroad, SkyHike and Summit Skyride.

Yoga with Animals

Move in the company of cute creatures.

  • Goat Yoga. For ages 15 and older. Serenbe Yoga + Bodyworks. Sat. and Sun.
  • Family Zoo Yoga. For ages 4 and older. Zoo Atlanta. June 12 and July 10.

Become a Mini Scientist

Immerse yourself in the wonderful world of science at Tellus Science Museum. Permanent exhibits include minerals, gemstones, fossils (the Fossil Dig reopens June 7), transportation technology and more. Special exhibits explore how science fiction became fact, space age inspired jewelry and how microorganisms work. Ages 8 and older can also participate in special archaeology events, available in June.

Free Bowling

Bowl a strike at metro Atlanta bowling centers that participate in the Kids Bowl Free program, which gives registered kids two free games of bowling every day. Find bowling centers in Atlanta here.

For the Chocolate Lover

Become a chocolatier for a day with Peterbrooke Chocolatier. Learn the history of chocolate, make your own truffles, decorate caramel apples, and dip cookies, pretzels and potato chips for delicious treats.

It’s Time to Paddle

Learn how to paddle, kayak, canoe and more with these experiences.

  • Try out canoeing at Chattahoochee Nature Center’s Summer Family Canoe Days. Learn paddling techniques and equipment, participate in races, and play practice games.
  • REI offers hiking trips, kayaking and paddleboard tours, classes on birding, biking, paddleboarding and more for the ultimate outdoorsy experience.

Sleep in the Trees

Spend a night in a treehouse for a unique staycation.

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Go-to Guide: Tubing with Kids Around Atlanta

Traveling down the Chattahoochee by inner tube or raft is a great way to cool off. Do it yourself, or visit one of these companies for a relaxing day on the river.

Please note that because companies are taking safety precautions during COVID-19, you may experience longer wait times or reduced capacity for rentals. Be sure to check the website or call for special instructions.

Cool River Tubing, Helen

This tubing company sits right in the German-inspired town of Helen, and also has a zip line, water slide and climbing areas. After snaking down the Chattahoochee River, explore the town and have a taste of German food.
Cost: Purchase tickets at the Headwaters or Chattahoochee Outposts, and the Main Street Booth. $10-$16 per person; prices vary for other activities.
The Details: Open daily, 9 a.m.-5 p.m. The minimum age for tubing is 3.

Nantahala Outdoor Center

Float down the Chattahoochee River at one of NOC’s three outposts: Roswell at Azaelea Park, Powers Island or Johnson Ferry.  Kayak, canoe, paddleboard and raft rentals and guided trips are also available; book tickets online.
Cost: From $25 per person.
The Details: Open daily at 9 a.m.-5:30 p.m. Minimum tubing age is 8.

Chattahoochee River Tubing

Purchase tickets at the Abbots Bridge Road check-in area; a shuttle will take you to the put-in location for a four-hour ride down the Chattahoochee. Straps are available to tether your tubes together, or rent a 4-person raft.
Cost: $23 (4 hour trip)
The Details: Open daily 10 a.m.-7 p.m. (last trip leaves at 4:30 p.m.). Minimum tubing age is 5.

Helen Waterpark

This family attraction in Helen offers a 2.5-hour tube ride from 2 launch locations – Highway 75 N. or Brucken Street. While you’re there, enjoy the waterpark’s slides and activities.
Cost: $12-$16 per person for a single-tube trip (prices vary on weekends and holidays).
The Details: Open daily, 9 a.m.-5 p.m.

Shoot the Hooch

Tube the Chattahoochee on a 2-3 hour trip, from Power Island Park NPS to Paces Mill NPS.
Cost: Starting at $25 per person.
The Details: Open daily 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Minimum tubing age is 5.

DIY Shoot the Hooch

The Chattahoochee River National Recreation Area is open for rafting and tubing from dawn to dusk during the summer; all you need is a life vest and raft or tube. Parking is $5 at any of the parking lot access points. Make sure to leave a second car where you decide to end on the river.

Check weather reports and call for dam water release information: This provides recommended calm water times for floating. Buford Dam: 1-855- 326-3569. Make sure you are in a safe location when the river begins to rise.
Minimum age to float down the river varies if renting supplies from a company; if not, it is up to parental discretion.
Ages 12 and younger must wear a life vest at all times. Ages 13 and older must have one in the raft or tube.
Rubber-soled shoes are a must for tackling slippery rocks.

Where to Go:
Abbotts Bridge to Medlock Bridge, 4 miles; 3-4 hours.
Medlock Bridge to Jones Bridge, 3 miles; 1.5-2 hours.
Morgan Falls Dam to Johnson Ferry, 2 miles; 1-2 hours.
Johnson Ferry to Powers Island, 3.5 miles; 2-4 hours.
Powers Island to Paces Mill, 3 miles; 1-3 hours.

Visit nps.gov or call 678-538-1200 for more information.

Appalachian Outfitters

Meet at Appalachian Outfitters’ Dahlonega outpost for a tube ride on the Chestatee River. A shuttle will take you to the put-in site for the 30-45 minute ride. If you want to do the trip again, take a 10-minute walk back to the beginning (or pay a $2 shuttle fee for each additional ride). You can also rent canoe and kayaks for trips on the Chestatee and Etowah Rivers.
Cost: $6 per person; $2 for additional shuttle rides.
The Details: Open Mon.-Fri. 10 a.m.-4 p.m., Sat.-Sun. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. The minimum age for tubing is 4.

Toccoa River Tubing

This tubing adventure is worth the trip to the scenic Blue Ridge area – take a 1.5 mile trip down the calm waters of the Toccoa river.  Single and two-person funyaks and kayaks are also available for rental.
Cost: $15 per person.
The Details: Open daily 10 a.m.- 2 p.m.; reservations are not required. The minimum age for tubing is 5.

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Play On: Summer Theatre Productions

Alliance Theatre’s Beautiful Blackbird | Greg Mooney

Atlanta has a lot to offer in the drama department. Don’t miss these special performances.

Call or check websites for COVID-19 safety precautions and event cancellations.

Alliance Theatre’s Beautiful Blackbird Live

This family concert from the Alliance Theatre is on a free tour throughout Atlanta and features original music inspired by the children’s book “Beautiful Blackbird.” June 3, 10, 13 and 17.

Vibe Check: Improv Comedy at Lionheart Theatre

Watch a family-friendly improv show from comedy troupe Vibe Check. June 4-5.

Best of Broadway Musical Theatre Revue at Jennie T. Anderson Theatre

Enjoy a set list of Broadway’s greatest hits. June 10-13.

Roswell Summer Puppet Series at Roswell Cultural Arts Center

Puppets perform in four productions this season: “Jack and the Beanstalk,” “Billy Goats Gruff and Other Stuff,” “The Princess and the Pea, Y’all” and “The Zany Zoo.” June 15-July 10.

Aurora Children’s Playhouse on the Lawrenceville Lawn

Special children’s programming includes “Phenomenal Physics,” “Rhythm in Motion,” “Cirque du Todd” and “A Musical Tour Through Latin America.” June 16, 23 and 30 and July 7.

The Ugly Duckling at Center for Puppetry Arts

When a young bird doesn’t fit in with the other ducks in the pond, he goes on a journey where he meets other animals and discovers his true self. June 16-Aug. 1.

Virtual: Sit-In

Presented by the Alliance Theatre, this animated short celebrates the power of youth to change history as three friends learn about the sit-ins of the Civil Rights era. Through June 30.

Disney’s Newsies at The Legacy Theater

See this Broadway show about the newsboy strike come to life on the lawn. July 6-Aug. 1.

Junie B. Jones at Elm Street Cultural Arts Village

Quirky Junie B. Jones must learn to survive the adventures of first grade in this musical based on the popular book series. July 7-21.

Into the Woods at Byers Theatre

Fairytale characters Cinderella, Jack, Rapunzel, Little Red Riding Hood and more meet in this musical adventure. July 9-18.

Once Upon a Time at Lionheart at Lionheart Theatre

This play festival features “Fractured Fairytales” by J.M. Wolf and is directed and acted by kids. July 15-18.

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75+ Best Atlanta Playgrounds and Parks for Families

Atlanta Playgrounds

Chastain Park

Our top parks and playgrounds in metro Atlanta include everything from innovative play structures, skate parks and sand boxes to trails for hiking, trees for climbing and creeks for splashing. We have rounded up so many parks that no matter where you live, you can find some outdoor family fun.

Find a playground to explore:

Downtown & Westside Playgrounds in Metro Atlanta
Eastside Playgrounds in Metro Atlanta
Southside Playgrounds in Metro Atlanta
Northside Playgrounds in Metro Atlanta

Downtown & Westside Playgrounds in Metro Atlanta

Woodruff Park

Woodruff Park Playground

Anyone with “ATL” pride will love this playground shaped like the famous letters. An international design competition sparked the building of this playground by a Canadian designer. Kids can climb all over the walls, monkey bars, slides or play with the springs and spinners. Street parking is limited so we recommend visiting by public transportation.

Centennial Olympic Park Playground

This playground sits in the heart of downtown and is for all ages and all abilities. The surface is made of soft rubber and the play area includes many multi-sensory play elements as well as a great climbing structure. Much of this kid-friendly oasis sits beneath an awning that allows cover from the sun.

Piedmont Park

Two great play areas are hidden under the large trees in Piedmont Park to provide natural shade. The Mayor’s Grove Playground is designed for kids with and without special needs with fun play structures. The Noguchi Playscape is next to the park’s 12th Street gate and looks more like a modern sculpture garden than a playground. A giant, winding slide and other features help familiarize children with shapes, colors and textures.

Chastain Park Playground

Chastain Park Playground 

Kids can climb and explore in the treehouse, slide down one of the three large roller slides or play on the natural playscapes. Three giant “oodle” disc swings allow two children to recline and swing together and there is a spider web for climbing. The music area includes drums and chimes.

Atlantic Station Playground

The Atlantic Station Playground is a great stop for getting the wiggles out if you’re shopping or sightseeing in town. Other than two traditional slides, every piece of equipment is more modern and inventive than typical playground options. Even the benches are unique looking.

Tanyard Creek Park

This urban oasis boasts gorgeous scenery with a winding creek, sprawling green spaces, bridges and trees with a trail leading up to an inviting playground nestled in the middle of the park.

Winn Park

Set below street level in Ansley Park, this park provides a safe area for kids to run around or utilize the playground. While significantly smaller than its neighbor, Piedmont Park, Winn Park usually a lot less crowded.

Shady Valley Park

True to its name, this small park in Buckhead offers lots of shade. Kids love the cool playground equipment; parents love the rubber ground under the playground. Everyone loves the big, colorful mural.

Memorial Park

This is a great little park in Buckhead with abundant scenery, a creek, a bridge and ample walking trails. Visit the nice-sized playground so kids can get their wiggles out while parents can enjoy the nearby shade.

Little Nancy Creek Park

Little Nancy Creek park in north Buckhead may indeed be little but its playground is big (and looks like a treehouse). There is also a walking trail, community garden and the creek itself.

Eastside Playgrounds in Metro Atlanta

Decatur Toy Park

Decatur Toy Park

Scooters, tricycles, small slides, push cars galore – this park is filled with toys families decided to donate, and is a great place for toddlers to play. If your older kids want to slide, swing or hang from monkey bars, they have that too.

Mason Mill Park

Two separate playgrounds sit right across from each other. The larger is best suited for older kids, ages 5-12. A giant pirate ship-shaped play structure with a three-level tree house provides lots of playing, climbing and sliding opportunities. The tree house is for children who aren’t afraid of heights.

Bessie Branham Park

Families love this green space, located near shops and restaurants in Kirkwood. Kids especially enjoy the playground with a tire swing, see-saws and even a rock wall. Parents especially enjoy the mature trees nearby that provide shade in the hotter months.

Coan Park

Another Kirkwood hot spot, Coan Park offers visitors tennis courts, a baseball field and a pretty cool, accessible playground. But beyond that parents appreciate the exercise equipment strategically placed close to the playground. Don’t miss the musical instruments that kids can play near the rotunda pavilion.

Cabbagetown Park

A neighborhood favorite—this one has plenty of areas for kids, dogs and adults to run around, plus a great playground and even some interesting stone sculptures. You can’t miss the magnificent oak tree, perfect for climbing, swinging or just sitting in the shade.

D.H. Stanton Park

Atlanta residents flock to this “energy cost-neutral” park that was once a landfill. A canopy of solar panels generates enough energy to power ten homes and of course provides shade for visitors. Add to that a playground and a splash pad and it’s no wonder this park is so popular.

Grant Park

When people say “Grant Park” they often mean the neighborhood but there is also the actual park which is home to Zoo Atlanta.  Find tennis and basketball courts, a baseball field, a swimming pool, a playground, and walking trails on 131 acres of wooded area. Go for a stroll down the wide paths of Grant Park while the kids run free.

DeKalb-Peachtree Airport Park Playground

Kids go crazy over this playground right next to a runway (with a fence of course). They can watch planes take off while swinging, scaling the monkey bars or sliding down the curvy slide. They can also play in the pretend cockpit or better yet, host an airplane-themed birthday party while planes fly above.

Lullwater Preserve

For a true adventure with nature, check out Lullwater Preserve on Emory University’s campus in Decatur. This peaceful park is amazingly fun for kids. They love to explore the old mill, waterfalls and a 210-foot suspension bridge.

McKoy Park

A great, safe neighborhood park in Decatur, McKoy has something for everyone—a colorful playground, exercise equipment and even a skate park.

Murphey Candler Park

Murphey Candler Park

The park began making improvements in October 2020, and while the project is not set to be completed until fall of 2021, the new playground should be completed this month. These improvements include a castle-like playground, swings, springers and a tree climber. While there, spot the cute storm water access points painted to look like animals! With different playgrounds for different age groups, all kids can have a blast at Murphey Candler park, located in Brookhaven. Families also enjoy the hiking trails, lake and picnic pavilion.

Historic Fourth Ward Park

This beautiful city park with access to the BeltLine has a super cool playground. It’s packed with climbing elements, slides, swings, rock walls and even a trampoline kids can jump on. The spider-like ropes course and large swings shaped like bowls are two favorites. Don’t miss the nearby splash pad on hot days.

Brookhaven Park

This park is mostly popular with the four-legged set and their owners but kids (who aren’t dog shy) will have fun here too. It has plenty of room to run around, plus a playground and trails.

Freedom Park

Freedom is a linear park at the intersection of North Ave. and Freedom parkway without a playground, mostly frequented by joggers and people walking their dogs. Still, families enjoy strolling along the trails, seeing the unique art sculptures throughout the park and searching for tiny doors.

Ashford Park

Ashford Park

The recently renovated park in Brookhaven includes two new play structures, tall slides, tons of swings, a seesaw, a huge sand box and toy park area. Watching the MARTA trains speed by is an added bonus for kids.

Oakhurst Park

This eight-acre Decatur gem offers a fun playground, baseball fields and impressive basketball courts.

Best Friend Park

For summertime fun, Best Friend Park in Norcross has a great pool with a waterslide and splash pad (for a fee) and also has a playground with swings, basketball courts, tennis courts and a walking trail.

Henderson Park

A hidden gem in Tucker with both paved and walking trails with a beautiful lake backdrop. It has a couple of playgrounds, one that is shaded by trees and conveniently located by a covered picnic pavilion.

Stone Mountain Park

Sure, Stone Mountain is a huge Atlanta attraction with tons of activities that cost money, but it’s also a beautiful, fun park. If you plan to visit more than three times a year, it’s worth it to buy the parking pass. Once you pay to park, you can enjoy a lot of things Stone Mountain has to offer without getting out your wallet—hiking, biking, walking, grilling and playing on the playground.

Southside Playgrounds in Metro Atlanta

Kenwood Park

It has two sets of playing equipment, one for younger and one for older kids, although children usually run back and forth between both sets. Families who like to exercise together enjoy the beautifully shaded one mile trail.

Picnic Park

A favorite for Peachtree City families, this lakeside park has a wonderful enclosed play space called the All Children’s Playground that sits on artificial turf. Kids also love to feed the geese that come up onto the banks of the lake and of course, families love to picnic there underneath all the shady trees.

Luther Glass Park

A small but beautiful park in Peachtree City, Luther Glass has a basic playground, walking and biking paths and ponds for fishing. The park actually has three separate ponds which is why locals often refer to it as “three ponds park.”

Battery Way Park

Set on Lake Peachtree, this is a beautiful park for catching the sunrise or sunset. Families enjoy walking along the path by the lake or using the playground.

Lake McIntosh Park

Another gorgeous lakeside park in Peachtree City with picnic pavilions and a playground right by the water. People flock here for water activities like kayaking, paddle boarding and fishing.

Ben Hill Park

Ben Hill Park

Ben Hill Park is tucked within the Ben Hill neighborhood in Southwest Atlanta. It has something for every age. Older children can play basketball while younger ones can spend quality time with their parents together on the swings.

Northside Playgrounds in Metro Atlanta

Brook Run Park

 

Brook Run Park

The Children’s Adventure Garden at this Dunwoody park has clusters of bright play structures with shades above to hide from the sun. The play structures are separated for toddlers and older kids. There is so much to get into: slides and swings of varying sizes, several sets of monkey bars, a multicolored tunnel, and a “log roll” for balancing. The cushioned rubber matting will help protect from scrapes and bruises.

Bunten Road Park

This huge park in Duluth has an impressive, castle-like playground with big, twisty slides and a web tire swing among other things. Parents with toddlers love the nearby soft-ground play area and all parents love the gazebo with picnic tables. Bunten Road Park also has scenic walking trails.

Taylor Park

Right next to city hall in Duluth, this park may be small, but it makes up for it with its train-themed playground equipment. It is easy for parents to keep an eye on kids because of the park’s size. There is also a grassy area for running around.

Georgetown Park

This park in Dunwoody may be on the small side, but its playground offers the trifecta for families—shaded, fenced and soft surface.

Winwood Hollow Park

Another Dunwoody favorite, Winwood Hollow Park has a fantastic, shady playground for all ages. It includes a tiny roller coaster track perfect for matchbox cars, rope climbing structures, a leaning climbing wall ladder, monkey bars, three different slides, riding elements such as spinning stools and airplanes, and regular, baby and disk swings. There are also chimes and bongos for kids to play.

East Cobb Park

A top-notch playground with equipment for all ages is the highlight of this park. It is spacious and has lots of slides, monkey bars and plenty of swings. Kids also like to splash in the creek, walk the trails or play in the spacious, grassy areas.

Newtown Park

It may be home to the Dream Dog Park, one of the best dog parks in the country, but Newtown Park in Johns Creek has pretty dreamy offerings for kids too. The two playgrounds have lots of fun, innovative equipment that will keep kids busy. It also has a beautiful, shaded trail all around the park.

Bay Creek Park

Kids are never bored at Bay Creek Park in Loganville. They have walking trails, basketball courts, baseball fields and even a skate park. Families absolutely love the accessible playgrounds which feature rubberized surfaces, supportive swings, wide slides and a wheelchair-accessible sandbox

Terrell Mill Park

Most people visit this multi-use park in Marietta for its sports facilities—baseball, football, soccer and tennis. But it has a nice little playground as well as many covered pavilions that can be rented for parties.

Heritage Park

Families can spend a whole afternoon at Heritage Park in McDonough, seeing The Veteran’s Wall of Honor (engraved with battle scenes), The Veteran’s Museum and lots of historical structures like Henry County’s first library. Kids especially love the 1972 UH1 Huey helicopter as well as the playground called “Kidsville.”

Thrasher Park Playground

Thrasher Park Playground

If your kids love trains, this playground in downtown Norcross is the right pick. Climb all over the bright, red train play structure and watch real trains chug by on the tracks. Spinning elements and a net climbing structure add to the fun.

Hembree Park

Roswell residents mostly go to this park for its recreation center and baseball fields. But it has a big playground area with unusually tall slides and plenty of swings.

Roswell Area Park

RAP (as locals call it) truly has it all—awesome playgrounds with separate areas for older and younger kids, picnic pavilions, baseball fields, walking trails and a pool. The best part is that the whole park is filled and surrounded by trees, offering lots of shades in the hotter months.

Leita Thompson Park

Named after Leita Thompson, one of the first female banking executives who bought and donated the land for this pretty and serene park in Roswell. While it doesn’t have playground equipment, it does have beautiful trails which are fun for walking or for going on a nature scavenger hunt.

Waller Park Recreation Center

The old playground at this recreation center was replaced with a new adaptive playground for ages 5-12 and features slides, swings and music-making structures. Updates also include new shade structures, a connective side walk and a new pavilion.

Oakdale Park

For a roomy playground that promises plenty of fun for all ages, Oakdale Park in Smyrna is a sure bet. The enclosed playground with a soft rubber surface features two different sections: a play zone for the younger set, and another that offers more challenging action – including a rock-climbing component.

Duncan Creek Park

Folks in Dacula are lucky to live so close to this amazing park. The shaded playground not only has a soft surface and cool equipment but it also boasts a sand area. And speaking of sand, this park also has sand volleyball courts. The skate park is a popular spot.

Rabbit Hill Park

Another Dacula favorite, this 200-acre park is a blast for families. It also has sand volleyball courts. The playground (which is on artificial grass) has plenty of swings and twisty slides and nearby shallow canals for kids to splash in during the hotter seasons. Children especially love the dinosaur fossils that they can climb on at Rabbit Hill Park.

Dresden Park

This 25-acre neighborhood park in Chamblee is on the smaller side but it does have decent sized grassy areas, shaded walking trails, picnic areas and a pretty creek running through it. Parents visit it for the semi-enclosed playground with its soft surface.

Rhyne Park

This Smyrna park has lots of options for sports like softball and tennis. But it also has two playgrounds with cool equipment (rope-climbing structures, for instance), picnic pavilions and a fitness trail.

Webb Bridge

It’s shade all day at this gorgeous Alpharetta park filled with baseball fields, soccer fields and walking trails. The two wooden playgrounds are truly unique with a little play creek that runs through one of them.

Gary Pirkle Playground

Gary Pirkle Park Playground

This playground in Sugar Hill wins for hot summer days or the unexpected rainstorm because it is completely covered by a large pavilion to keep the weather out. No more having to leave the playground because of a storm.

Alexander Park

The 91-acre Alexander Park in Lawrenceville is filled with plenty of green space and undisturbed landscaping. The bright new playground off the Scenic Highway entrance includes a two-story playscape with tube slides, a cargo net and a climbing structure. The playground is also shaded! There’s a smaller playground for toddlers. The park has three trails – more than three miles in all – for walking, jogging and biking. There’s also an 18-hole disc golf course that gets plenty of action, as well as two ponds (each with its own fishing dock), a horseshoe pit and an outdoor classroom.

Rock Springs Park

The vast playground in Lawrenceville is separated into two distinct areas. One structure is for smaller children, with small steps leading up for easy access to the slides, musical features and more. The other structure, for the older set, is more adventurous; big kids can enjoy everything from a daring, high boulder walk to a complex monkey bars section.

Taylor-Brawner Park

Because the playground—more than 3,000 square feet—is tucked deep inside this Smyrna park, traffic noise is filtered out. This is a unique space where having fun with your children is guaranteed. One area is designated for ages 2-5, and another for ages 5-12. Play equipment was selected partly to blend into the natural landscape.

PlayTown Suwanee

Young and old visitors will enjoy seeing the colorful, fiberglass cow sculptures throughout the pavilion. The playscape is in a natural setting with lots of shading. Built for both school-age children and toddlers, kids can climb on the bridge, slides or climbing walls. The playground features a castle, log cabin and rocket. The sand activity area is a fun place to dig and play.

Haw Creek Park

This playground at this park in Cumming is similar to the soft play areas at malls, but in the middle of the woods. When arriving, take a short walk through the wooded area and the playground will appear. Three “pods” are connected by walking paths and kids are challenged to let their imaginations take over. Play on giant acorns, logs, big bugs, super-sized mushrooms, a mama bear and two cubs and a bigger log with a climbing net attached.

Swift-Cantrell Park

The park features two large playscapes: one for both older and younger kids and one just for younger kids. Children can enjoy swings, climbers, bridges and other playthings. “New patterns of play” are encouraged in a contemporary play system that includes circuits, walls, rings and more. A recent remodel has made the playground inclusive for all children, and features include slides, swings, ADA ramps, sensory stations, play structures, a ropes tower, an eight person wheelchair sway and more.

Ocee Park

At this Johns Creek park, you’ll find two structures for play—one for children ages 2-5 and another for older kids. On the “Ten Spin” Merry-Go-Round kids can sit or stand and spin around. The generational swing allows a younger kid and an older kid or parent to swing together at opposite ends. The Avalanche slide is another cool feature that lets kids use their upper body strength to climb up and then slide down.

Wills Park

This large, mostly shaded park in Alpharetta with a walking trail and baseball fields has something for everyone. The highlight is “Wacky World,” a wooden kingdom with towers, bridges and passages, with sections for older and younger kids. Children can navigate the rope bridge, climb to a tower lookout post, or take a spin in the tire swing. The yellow playground offers equipment for younger kids, and the covered purple playground has climbing structures and swings for big kids.

Morgan Falls Overlook Park

Morgan Falls Overlook Park

This park is a Sandy Springs treasure, with plenty of green space overlooking the Chattahoochee river. Its modern playground with unusual climbing elements has two play structures that serve both younger and older kids with places to climb, slide and explore. But the spot where they all come together is the spider web, a tall rope structure that provides a climbing challenge. Shades give cover from the sun and the AstroTurf helps with falls.

Abernathy Greenway Playable Art Park

Kids will essentially enter a sculpture garden they can play on at this Sandy Springs park. Climb, swing and jump from real art structures including the yellow, spider-like structure, the mosaic climbing wall, the large, red swings and the many other jungle gym climbing areas.

Ridgeview Park

This natural-themed playscape includes log-like staircases, swings, a cozy dome, a we-saw and a crawl tunnel. This smaller playground is perfect for preschool and elementary aged kiddos.

Cauble Park

Set on the white, sandy beach of Lake Acworth, this park has a nature-themed playground that fits right in with the surroundings. Younger kids can swing or bounce on different play elements and older kids will love the large jungle gym structure or the “spider net” climbing area. All kids will love the giant, towering climbing areas and slides.

Sweet Apple Park

The newly-renovated playground right by Sweet Apple Elementary in Roswell offers fun for young and older kids who want to climb, slide, swing and zip line. Highlights include the generational swing and the rope-climbing spider web. The mostly shaded playground with a picnic pavilion features colorful slides as well as a small children’s play area with a large sandbox. The playground is open to the community outside of school hours.

Kidscape Village at Cobb Park

This Smyrna park has several play structures for all ages, most with giant umbrellas for shade. The colorful playscapes allow for climbing, swinging or sliding. There are shorter climbing walls for going up and over, a telescope, tall boulders to climb and a spider web structure. The toddler play area has smaller swings and slides.

Caney Creek Preserve Playground

 

Caney Creek Preserve Playground

Kids love to come to this Cumming park for the dinosaur dig area. Adventurous kids like the spider web climbing net too. Children can play around the nature trails or climb aboard the logs or boulder play structures.

Riverside Park

This gorgeous park that sits on the banks of the Chattahoochee River in Roswell is the setting for many concerts and events. Families flock to this park, mostly for its three awesome playgrounds. Two of them are more for older kids with tall slides and one is for the younger set. In the summertime the main attraction is the splash-n-play sprayground.

Garrard Landing Park

A canopy of trees provides natural shade at this hidden Roswell park. Kids absolutely love the playground which several shapes and sizes of slides, swings and plenty of climbing structures. Parents love the covered pavilion with tables right by the playground.

Azalea Park

The Chattahoochee River is the backdrop for this Roswell park that is a hot spot for kayakers and paddle boarders. A nice little playground gives the kids lots of exercise (with pint-sized rock climbing walls) while parents enjoy the view.

Dunwoody Nature Center

With free admission for most activities, families can enjoy nature and play at Dunwoody Nature Center. The play structures on the playground will delight your children. There is one for toddlers and one for older kids.  (The slides are super-high!) They also have freestanding structures including a cube of ropes, a large rope swing and a standing seesaw. Kids also like to check out the treehouse which offers a great view of some of the trails, as well as Wildcat Creek.

Poole’s Mill Park

Designed for ages 5-12, this new playground features slides, swings, one accessible swing and an IKO ball climber. The park also boasts a covered bridge, picnic tables along Settingdown Creek and the Cumming Garden Club’s Memorial Garden.

– Elsa Simcik contributed to this article.

Check out other newly updated playgrounds here.

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Celebrate National Donut Day!

June 4 is National Donut Day! Here’s where you can score a free donut this Friday:

Krispy Kreme

Participating Krispy Kreme locations are offering a free donut of your choice on Friday. Plus, show your COVID-19 vaccination card and receive a free glazed donut, too!

Dunkin’ Donuts

Get a free classic donut of your choice, including Boston kreme, glazed, glazed chocolate or jelly filled, with the purchase of any beverage at Dunkin’ Donuts.

Duck Donuts

Get a free cinnamon sugar, powdered sugar or bare donut at Duck Donuts participating locations.

Find lots more tasty options at one of our Favorite Donut Shops in Atlanta.

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100 Days of Summer

Summer at the Rock at Stone Mountain Park

Plan the best summer ever! Entertain your kids all season long with these ideas and attractions.

Many attractions may still require timed ticket admission; call or check websites for other COVID-19 safety precautions.

On the first week, catch a Braves games, visit Fernbank Museum and more.

On the second week, spend time outdoors at Stone Mountain Park’s Summer at the Rock, practice yoga with animals and more.

On the third week, see pirates at LEGOLAND Discovery Center, get up close to animals at Zoo Atlanta and more.

On the fourth week, puzzle it out at an escape room, see a movie under the stars and more.

On the fifth week, travel to an African safari, visit with butterflies and more.

On the sixth week, marvel at a magic show, spend the night at Georgia Aquarium and more.

On the seventh week, cool off at an indoor play space, try axe throwing and more.

On the eighth week, taste iconic Atlanta beverages, practice driving and more.

On the ninth week, get adventurous at Six Flags Over Georgia, practice fishing and more.

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100 Days of Summer: Week 1

Photo by Kevin D. Liles/Atlanta Braves

Take Me Out to the Ball Game

Watch the Atlanta Braves compete and enjoy the Family Sundays program on June 6 and 20 and July 4 and 18. Kids will have the chance to win prizes, run the bases and participate in a Q&A with alumni. Visit Hope & Will’s Sandlot for free for an exciting kid’s zone with rock climbing, ziplining, carnival games and more.

Prehistoric Exploration

Fernbank Museum of Natural History’s newest exhibits explore the fascinating world of animals, their survival skills and crocodiles’ role in the wild. Permanent exhibits look at dinosaurs, culture, the different regions of Georgia, STEM, nature and more. Take in nature and the view from the trees with WildWoods, and watch educational documentaries exploring animals and the environment.

Have a Laugh

Try an improv show for a good giggle.

  • Improv comedy troupe Vibe Check is performing family-friendly shows at Lionheart Theatre. June 4 and 5, 7:30 p.m.
  • Watch live improv featuring short-form games and long scenes at Dad’s Garage Theatre’s new drive-in theatre. Recommended for ages 13 and older.

A Carnival in the Sky

See an incredible view of Atlanta on Ponce City Market’s rooftop while playing mini golf, basketball, skee ball and more. There’s also a three-story slide and the Heegee Tower.

Kids’ Movies for $1

The 2021 Regal Summer Movie Express is offering family movies for $1 on Tuesdays and  Wednesdays. Movies include “Teen Titans GO! to the Movies,” “Wonder Park,” “The LEGO Movie,” “Storks” and more for a chance to catch one of your favorite family movies on the big screen.

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