When it comes to our children we want nothing more than for them to grow up safe, healthy, and happy. The last thing a parent wants to have to face is their child getting injured as the result of someone else’s negligence. Injuries to children are unfortunately very common in this country. Safe Kids USA reported that in 2009 approximately 220,000 children under the age of 14 were treated in emergency rooms for injuries sustained at a playground.
With so many hazards out there, play time can turn into a dangerous situation for our children. That is why, as parents, we must make sure that where our kids play is an environment free of dangers. There are several things that should be considered when searching for the right playground for you and your child: the materials used, the playground surface (tire, woodchips, sand), and the age appropriateness of the equipment. We have scoured the local playgrounds in New Jersey and these are the five best playgrounds for your child.
1. Wyckoff Community Playground
Address: 340 Franklin Ave. Wyckoff, NJ
Parking: Large lot adjacent to park.
Handicap Accessibility: Information not available.
Hours: Not given.
This playground is the definite choice for lovers of the sandbox. There is a large sandbox with plenty of sand toys available to play with—no need to bring your own. There are separate play structures for different age groups. There are also multiple slides (some for toddlers) and even three racer slides where the children can race against their friends. In the warmer months you can expect to see the ice cream truck there often.
2. Seven Presidents Oceanfront Park
Address: 221 Ocean Ave. North Longbranch, NJ
Parking: Parking lot right near playground.
Handicap Accessibility: Some activities may be difficult to participate in for handicapped children, but there are plenty of universally accessible activities.
Hours: 8 a.m. to dusk.
This park is walking distance from the ocean, which makes for a great summer trip! There are two main play areas one for children two to five years and the other for five to 12 years. The play surface is made of rubber foam that is great and safe for kids (it also prevents a lot of mud from gathering). For the older kids there is a skate park located in walking distance from the park.
3. Dorbrook Recreation Area
Address: 209 County Route 537 East Colts Neck, NJ
Parking: Multiple parking lots.
Handicap Accessibility: Fully accessible.
Hours: Park- dawn until dusk; Spray ground- open May 19 – September 9 weekdays 11 a.m., weekends 10 a.m. open until 7:30 p.m. May through July and 7 p.m. August and September.
This park is worth the crowding. This park prides itself on being a boundless park that is accessible for all children. It can accommodate children in wheelchairs and even has brail signs for the visually impaired. There is a wide array of activities for the kids to embark on. Definitely bring your water clothes and sand toys! There is a spray ground that is great in the summer, and this park is sure to entertain your children for hours on end. The Monmouth County Park System states that this park is the first universally accessible playground in New Jersey.
4. Van Saun Park
Address: Forest Ave. & Continental Ave. Paramus, NJ
Parking: Large parking lot across the street from park
Handicap Accessibility: Play structure fully dedicated to handicap accessability.
Hours: Dawn to dusk.
This park really accommodates all children. There are four play structures, two for toddlers and one that is specifically handicap accessible. There is a large area for eating with more than 30 tables as well as barbeques, so it is perfect for an all-day event. Conveniently across the street is the Van Suan County Zoo where there is also a train ride. There is also a carousel, pony rides, and a launch location for model rockets near the park.
5. Lyndhurst Town Park
Address: 367 Valley Brook Avenue Lyndhurst, NJ
Handicap Accessibility: One handicap swing, play surface is wheelchair friendly, plenty of low-to-ground playthings.
Hours: Playground 9 a.m. to 8 p.m., spray ground open summer only 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
This park doubles as both a playground and spray ground with lots of great play equipment and a mini water park in the summer. The equipment is modern and all play surfaces are padded for added fall protection. There are volunteers that make sure the spray ground stays safe for kids and that they are following the rules. Both play areas are fenced in. On suggestion: bring a chair if you would like to sit down and watch your children as this park does not have enough benches to accommodate how crowded it sometimes gets.
While choosing the safest playground is important, parents should still be ready in the event that an accident occurs. Be sure to always keep an eye on your child, intervening if you witness dangerous actions. Carry a first aid kit with you so that you can properly treat minor injuries, but in the case of more serious injuries know the closest emergency facility. In your kit you should have first aid ointment or disinfecting spray, bandages, gauze, non-latex gloves, sunscreen, tweezers (for splinters), children’s ibuprofen or acetaminophen, and adhesive tape. It is also important that you make sure your child is properly clothed and is wearing appropriate footwear. To see more awesome parks in New Jersey check out NJ Playgrounds.
We all want our children to be free of injury, but when an accident does occur and it is the result of someone’s careless actions you may be entitled to compensation. The New Jersey injury lawyers at Console & Associates P.C. have defended the rights of children involved in accidents for 25 years. Call us toll-free today to set up your free consultation at (866) 778-5500.