Those long summer days with toddlers and preschoolers can be taxing if you’re stuck in the house. When you have school-age kids (as I do), you join a pool. But when your children are little, you don’t need a pool membership to enjoy water play. Your little ones can safely and happily splash around at free local spray decks and wading pools.
Here’s a list of nearby water play spots for the preschool set. All 100% free. Pack a snack (and a swim diaper if need be), spray on the sunscreen, and enjoy!
Note: Some spray parks close after Labor Day. Be sure to check schedules before you go.
Artesani Playground & Wading Pool
1255 Soldiers Field Rd (westbound), Boston
Open daily 9:30am-7pm
Artesani in Brighton has a fun wading pool and good-sized play structure in addition to a large parking lot. My girls loved it when they were little. The downsides are it gets quite crowded on hot days and small children can contract GI bugs if they inadvertently drink the water. (Trust me, I learned this the hard way!) As with anything likely to attract families, we recommend planning an early visit (10am) to avoid the crowds.
Soule Park & Splash Pad
652 Hammond St, Brookline
Open Daily 8am-1opm
Located in nearby Chestnut Hill, Soule offers a nice spray deck, two playgrounds, a soccer field and restroom facilities. Off-street parking is available though the lot is tiny and can fill up at peak times.
Burr Park Splash Pad
142 Park Street, Newton
Open Daily 6am-10pm
Burr Park in Newton Corner once featured a small dated wading pool only available to Kids Korner campers. Local tots who wanted to cool down had to look elsewhere. I’m happy to report the City of Newton spent approximately $60,000 to convert the pool to a modest but functional spray deck. Motion sensors allow it to turn on and off automatically. Families can also take advantage of a small adjoining play structure, large playing field and tennis court. Parking is available in the small adjacent lot.
Beaver Brook Spray Deck
621 Trapelo Rd., Belmont, MA 02478 at Intersection of Mill Street
Open Daily 9:30am – 7:00pm (Closing September 4, 2017)
The Beaver Brook Spray Deck is unique among our local spray parks. It’s deck is overlaid with a variety of boulders that the kiddos love. It’s a little nerve-wracking for adults since children + water + rocks often mean scraped knees and worse. If you go, you should expect to keep a close eye on the kiddos.
Waltham Spray Parks
Last but not least neighboring Waltham offers a total of 9 spray parks. The closest are McDonald Playground (8 Cutter St) just off High Street and Fitch Spray Park (14 Ash St) off Crescent Street.
Click here to view the entire list.
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