“A change is as good as a rest,” my great-grandmother was fond of saying.
A visit to the newly renovated Hunters Woods Playground in Southeast Naperville proves that to be true, with the revamped and reenergized space serving as a new spot for kids in the Western suburbs of Chicago to have fun.
New Hunters Woods Playground
The playground design was based on input from neighbors and includes state-of-the-art play equipment that is accessible to children of all abilities. The playground has separate play structures for 2-5 year-olds and 5-12 year-olds.
It features both tunnel slides and traditional slides, a couple of rock climbing walls of varying heights and a car spring toy.
What I liked best was the picnic shelter, which has four tables with seating for approximately 30 people. It was nice to have shade on a day when the sun was beating down, and I love the idea of heading to the park for a playdate and lunch.
It’s located near a pond and there are a few short paths through the trees. They aren’t big enough for a true hike but they can make preschoolers feel like they’re on an adventure.
Have a “Park Palooza”
Another option is doing a playground crawl. Hit a couple different playgrounds in the area. There are several near Hunters Woods, including Farmington Park and Walnut Ridge, as well as playgrounds at Scott School and River Woods Elementary.
Take it a step further and sneak in some summer learning. Have kids hone their skills at comparing and contrasting the equipment found at the different parks or ranking them in different categories. Or have kids assign each park a fun factor rating and then have them list of the parks in order of fun factor from greatest to least.
Visit Naper Boulevard Library
While you’re in the neighborhood, check out the Naper Boulevard Library across the street. It has also been recently renovated this past spring, with nearly the whole first floor dedicated to children. It may be the smallest of the three Naperville libraries, but it’s full of fun for little learners.
The revamped library is bright and welcoming. It offers a variety of activities, from Yoga for Kids and the traditional storytimes, to Bark for Books, during which kids entering first through fifth grade are invited to read with a therapy dog team from the PAWSitive Therapy Troupe or Naperville Area Humane Society’s Paws for Tales.
You can find a listing of programs here should you want to dovetail a visit to the park and library for an afternoon of awesome fun in spaces that are new and welcoming.