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When you are designing a venue that will be open to the public, you know that first impressions are everything. While beautiful landscaping and an innovative layout is important for any public venue or park, there is nothing like a well-designed custom entrance gate for making people feel welcome. As you work with your playground designer, consider having the right entrance that makes a positive impression on visitors.

Make the Location Easy to Find

Many venues welcome visitors from all over the world who may not always know their way around town. While technology has made it easier to get close to a location, visitors may have trouble finding your park if it is nestled among other venues or in a rural area. Getting lost or searching for your location is stressful for anyone, and this can ruin a visit before it even starts. For this reason, a custom entrance gate is one of the most important pieces of park equipment that you can put out there. With the right gate, your venue can easily be identified even from a busy highway. 

Add a Touch of Beauty to Security

Increased security is important for keeping your visitors safe, and families always welcome additional features that can protect their kids. However, large metal gates with bars and other security features can seem stark at first glance. With a custom entrance gate, you get the best of both worlds. Whether you add a whimsical animal character or include a logo with bold colors, the guests will remember the beauty of the archway rather than a harsh line of metal bars.

Inspire Interest in the Theme

People come to your venue for a reason, and the front gate helps set the tone for the experience. We can create customized features such as dinosaur bones for a science-themed playground to go on the archway, or we can create an elegant entrance to honor the park’s donors. Seeing the theme reflected from the moment they arrive, gives guests a positive impression of the venue that just gets better as they explore your space. 

Generate Awareness on Social Media

Whether you are designing the entrance for a zoo or veteran’s memorial park, you should also be thinking about ways to increase the public’s interest in visiting the venue. Today, everyone loves to take and post selfies on their favorite social media platforms, and a gorgeous archway is the perfect place for people to pose and remember their special occasion. Once those photos are posted online, the custom gate becomes the first impression of your venue to potentially thousands of other people. Having the name of your spot placed directly in the focal point of the photos gets people excited about planning a visit. 

Final Thoughts

The entrance to any location always sets the stage for what’s to come once people pass through the gates. Now that you understand why the right entrance matters, you can get started on planning one that reflects your venue’s purpose and theme so that everyone enjoys their visit from start to finish. 

Check Out More Entranceways!

Posted by Matt Miller

Playground Safety Guide

April 10th, 2019

Playground Safety Guide

To ensure children’s safety on the playground, it is important to recognize different hazards, common sources of injury, and how to mitigate situations. Guidelines set up by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) help parents, caregivers, and education personnel create playground environments that are safe and inviting to all.

Understanding Playground Fall Risks

A recent study of playground equipment-related incidents found that 44% of treated emergency room injuries came from falls. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention also found that emergency departments see more than 20,000 children annually for playground-related traumatic head injuries.

  • Fall surfaces should be made from shock absorbing material like wood chips or rubber.
  • The area under/around fall zones should be a minimum of 6 feet in all directions.
  • Ladders steeper than 65 degrees should have hand grips and stairs with handrails on both sides.

Best Supervisory Practices

Because children can be expected to use playground equipment in unintended ways, adult supervision is recommended. Supervisors should be aware that not all playground equipment is appropriate for all children as different age groups differ in size, ability, intellect, and sociability.

  • Children under four years should not play on horizontal ladders or climbing equipment.
  • “Whirls” or “roundabouts” are best suited for children 5 to 12 years of age.
  • Ensure that there is a line of sight to all areas of the playground to keep track of children as they move.

Ensuring Children’s Safety

Supervisors should always stay aware of playground equipment upkeep and maintenance requirements. If equipment is found to be unsafe, report the problem to the park district or school to prevent any possible injuries. 

  • Metal or wood swing seats should be replaced with soft seats that will not splinter or burn children.
  • All corners should be rounded and smooth, with rolled or round capped edges.
  • Regularly check for signs of wear and tear and broken or missing components.

Be a Safety Leader!

By being aware of the hazards and conditions of playgrounds, supervisors can bring a greater level of safety to their children. In both public and private playground settings, it is important to supervise children’s safety while still encouraging them to explore and develop. All playgrounds present some challenges, but being attentive and mindful will ensure all children’s safety during play.

Posted by Matt Miller

Spending a beautiful day at the park provides many opportunities to bond as a family. While kids and their parents can always enjoy playing on the playground, it is also fun to have a few activities in mind that encourages more interaction. These five games are ideal for people of all ages, and we know that you will love spending hours engaged in a little family friendly competition.

Play Follow the Leader 

This classic game is great for teaching younger kids how to follow directions. Help with your kids gross motor skills by encouraging them to follow you as you perform movements such as hopping and skipping. Older kids will love it if you throw in a few challenges such as scaling a rope ladder or running across an obstacle course. As you play, take turns having each person in the family being the leader. 

Go On a Scavenger Hunt 

Scavenger hunts are one of the most adaptable games that you can play at the park. While it can be played as a single player game, it is also a lot of fun to divide your group up into teams. Try having kids play against the parents, or you could pair each kid up with an adult. You can also make scavenger hunt lists based upon a theme such as having to find seasonal items. With younger kids, you can have them bring back small items from the list such as a leaf, but older kids may prefer using their cameras to snap proof that they found things such as a squirrel climbing a tree. 

Stay Off the Hot Lava

The sheer excitement of this imaginative game is bound to have all of the kids want to get involved. Many parks have playground safety surfacing that mimics the look of hot lava, or your local playground may have different colored areas for the children to play. Start the game by pointing out exactly where the hot lava is and have everyone try to get from one point to another without “falling in”. 

Capture the Flag 

This game is always great at parks where the playground designer used a nautical theme, but you can also play it anywhere. The rules for this game do involve a little set up and a larger group since you need enough people to hold as the “prisoner” if they get caught, without ending the fun. However, this is one of the best games for getting kids to work together on strategizing and teamwork. 

Freeze Tag 

This is another classic game that your family can easily pick up at any park. Designate someone to be “it”. They will then have to run around and tag as many people as possible. Once someone is tagged, they are “frozen” until a teammate comes along and “unfreezes” them. 

Some games are just so fun that they’ll be played for years to come! In fact, teaching your kids to play these games now could potentially spark a family tradition that they’ll pass down one day. Whether your group loves freeze tag or pretending that they are in the prehistoric days of volcanic danger, you’ll all get a healthy dose of exercise while also having a whole lot of fun!

Posted by Matt Miller

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