As a mom in the Olympia, Washington area, I have recently been hearing a “buzz” in my mommy circle about a new place to play…indoors! Raising my two children in the rainy Pacific Northwest brought one challenge that I asked myself every day….Where can I take my kids to play that is safe, clean and have the opportunity to engage in gross motor activities without going to the McDonald’s Playplace, Chuck E Cheese or the mall play area? Having a good cup of coffee or lunch visiting with friends would only be an added bonus! Piper’s Playground was a dream from two area moms that asked themselves the same question and took it to the next level.
What is Piper’s Playground? http://pipersplayground.com ~ Facebook.com/PipersPlayground
“Piper’s Playground is an indoor playground, enrichment classes, espresso bar and cafe, fitness classes & birthday parties . . . all under one roof! It is located at 818 79th Ave Unit A, Olympia, WA 98501 Phone: (360)584-9886 Across from the Olympia Airport.
Onwers and creators, Kim and Katie spent many rainy Northwest days wishing there was a safe, fun and entertaining place for them to meet for a play date with their young children. They decided to turn that wish into a reality by opening Piper’s Playground. Now, Piper’s Playground is a destination you will not want to miss. The heart of the facility is the play area where children can exercise and have fun while remaining under the watchful eye of their parents or caregivers. Parents and caregivers will be able to relax or participate in their children’s activities at their discretion. It is an interactive destination supporting family play, growth and development. Piper’s Playground also hosts birthday parties, offers many parent-child classes as well as being the exclusive location of Stroller Strides and Body Back fitness classes in the Olympia area. Guests also enjoy quality coffee and healthy snacks at the café and relax with younger guests in our comfy leather couches and toddler play area. Welcome to Piper’s Playground.”
As I walked into Piper’s Playground, the first that that I noticed was how bright and cheery the space was. The color pallet of the playground was muted and relaxing. The floor to ceiling windows allowed natural light to illuminate the 13,000 square feet playspace. The atmosphere was very relaxing and welcoming….a place for a healthy and wholesome visit. At the entrace, we viewed the welcome counter and the price information. There were options for a single visit or to buy a pass for the year. We found that a visit to Piper’s Playground is less than a sugary latte! After a friendly greeting and smiles, it was time to visit the playground.
Owner, Katie Manning met Karin Hummel and I for our tour. She graciously showed us the adorable birthday rooms, play areas, work-out spaces, classrooms and answered our many questions. One of the first questions that I asked her was about cleaning and safety. As a preschool director, I was curious about standards and regulations. Question after question was answered immediately and with confidence. Katie knew her stuff! The play areas were cleaned more than 3 times a day with enviromentally safe cleaning products and deep cleaned once in the evening after closing. Enployees have completed background checks for employment, have drug tests, aquire food handlers cards and are trained in CPR. The birthday rooms had viewing windows and the playgorund was equiped with ample safety matting and storage for shoes during play.
The first area that we viewed was the Family Room-Little Tykes area.
This adorable space held a constuction area, train table, toddler climbing structure, chalk wall and more!
The large indoor play area our next destination of fun. This spacious area had plenty of floor for running and playing….a perfect place to release some “little kid” energy! The space was contained with half walls and had seating areas for visiting.
Our next area that we toured was the Piper’s Fitness Area. This large section of the facility was designated for the fitness classses that Piper’s Playground provides:
Stoller Strides: A 60 minute interval workout combining cardio & strength training.
Body Back: Combines high-intensity interval training with a clean-eating meal plan, BB runs in 8 week sessions, is limited to 10 participants & consists of 2 classes a week. Participants receive initial/final fitness assessments, nutritional support, weekly workout calendars tailored to their fitness level, a DVD and exercise tubing for at home workouts, and a food journal that includes a clean-eating meal plan and recipes.
Body Back Dads: Inspired by the fitness their wives and partners have achieved through Body Back, South Sound area dads have been asking for a similar class. It involves high intensity training workouts that are every bit as demanding as a regular Body Back Class.
TRX: Instead of using machines that support your body, TRX Suspecsion Training relies on the body supporting itself. By leveraging gravity and your body weight, you can perform hundreds of exercises that will increase mobility, core stability, strength, power, durability and flexibity.
Piper’s Playground Classes:
Piper’s Playground also offers monthly classes to serve and support the community: These classes range from $45 – $55. E-mail: Play@PipersPlayground.com or call (360)584-9886 to register.
Some classes that are being offered in February are:
Baby Bonding Yoga ~ Youthful Yogis ~ Kidventures ~ Little Movers & Shakers ~ Little OLYmpians ~ Mini-Monet’s ~ Parent & Child Hip-Hop & Dance ~ Petite Picasso’s ~ Piper’s Playtime: Babies ~ Piper’s Playtime: Toddlers ~ Talk to Me: French ~ Talk to Me: German ~ TotShots! ~ Is this What I Was Expecting? Life with a Newborn ~ Toddler Topis ~
Also offered at Piper’s Playground, Evolving Parents presents Parenting Bites. Parenting Bites are open office hours with parent coach, Emily McMason. This is offered Tuesday at lunc (11:45 – 12:45 pm) and Wednesday for breakfast (7:45 – 8:45). This informal discussion time is a drop-in format and requires no sign-ups or reservations….bring a meal, $5.00 and ANY PARENTING QUESTION. http://evolving-parents.com
Fill Your Tummy & Drink Something YUMMY!
Last, but certainly not least, Karin and I had the MOST delicious and healthy lunch at Piper’s Playground! We were excited to find out that the menu is 100% local and mostly organic.
Karin and I both tried the “Treehouse” Panini: Diestel farms free range turkey breast, provolone, spring pesto, thyme roasted tomatoes, arugula, on Italian farm bread. From Katie’s recommendation, we also had the Cucumber Dry Soda for our drink (only 4 ingredients in the soda!)….our lunch was AMAZING! We can’t wait to try other items on the menu…soups and other paninis.
We ate our lunch while relaxing on brown leather chairs, marveling on how peaceful the playground was….listening to laughing children, surrounded by friends and toys.
As we wrapped up our time, I couldn’t help but think of a fun quote from Jim Henson, “(Kids) don’t remember what you try to teach them. They remember what you are.” Piper’s Playground is a great place for kids to have fun and where moms and dads can equip themselves to be better, healthy and supported parents. Karin and I give Piper’s Playground TWO paint-covered, sticky with jelly THUMBS UP. Check them out rain OR shine!