Inclusive playgrounds are just that, playgrounds designed so that children of all abilities and backgrounds can play together. Meeting varied needs and interests is a goal of each of the playgrounds below. Whether you are searching for a playground to meet a specific need for your family, or just want to enjoy a fun day at the playground, consider the inclusive ones below.
RVA Area Playgrounds Offer Accessibility, Fun for Everyone
Huguenot Park: (10901 Robious Rd.. N. Chesterfield, VA, 23235) boasts a large play area designed for every kind of child. At the front of the play area, the sandboxes are a highlight and a popular playground feature for children with sensory needs. For those in wheelchairs, there are sand tables, so they too can enjoy playing in the sand. The playground itself is wheelchair accessible; and there are various types of swings, including adaptive swings that provide back support. Designed for children with limited speech, the bells and drums offer a new way to make sound. The playground was a labor of love for Jane Warrick whose daughter, Katie has multiple disabilities and needed a place she could play with friends. In fact, the playground is named for Katie: A Playground for Katie & Friends. The brightly colored playground has been a popular attraction for families since 2003.
Park365: (3600 Saunders Ave., Richmond, VA, 23227) has a great motto: “fun for all, and free for everyone”. The details at Park365 are incredibly thoughtful: an adult-sized changing table, rubber safety surfaces, sensory wall and wheelchair-accessible treehouse are only a few of the reasons why this is an exceptional place. At 2.4 acres, Park365 is the largest playground in our area, and the entirety of the park is handicap-accessible. One of the most popular playgrounds in RVA, it was voted Central Virginia’s #1 all-access park for people of all ages by Richmond Magazine.
Pole Green Park: (8996 Pole Green Park Ln., Mechanicsville, VA, 23116) is an inclusive playground in Hanover. The brightly colored play structure is inviting, and the smooth rubber surface is wheelchair accessible. Pole Green Park playground offers swings with back support, ramps and an adjacent tot lot. Additionally, the playground is fenced in, creating security for parents of “elopers”.
White Bank Park: (400 White Bank Rd., Colonial Heights, VA, 23834) was a project of the Maddie Mann Foundation for Accessible Play; hence, the playground’s name: Maddie’s Magnificent Playpark. Each aspect of this large playground keeps the mission of the foundation in mind: “helping those in the disabled community be able to LIVE to the best of their abilities”. From top to bottom, the design allows every kind of child to enjoy the park. Features include: a soft, rubber, wheelchair accessible surface, a sensory wall, instruments, adaptive swings, a wall of sign language alphabet letters and the word “hello” written in several languages. Further, on this “barrier-free playground”, there are elevated sand tables and everyone can reach the highest play area.
While there is no shortage of fun playgrounds in RVA, these inclusive ones provide all families an opportunity to have fun and be active.
— By Lindsay Garrison
Richmond on the Cheap contributor Lindsay Garrison is a Richmond, Virginia based mom to two young children. A graduate from Chesterfield Schools and Randolph-Macon College, Lindsay is proud to call Richmond home. In the years prior to planning activities and outings with her own children, she was a French teacher. During her tenure she earned accolades for her creative teaching style and ability to connect with her students. Lindsay now applies the skills she learned when she was planning student trips to France, to her own family adventures. She can’t wait to take her own children to France one day! Follow the Garrison’s family adventures on Instagram: @thegarrisonsrva
- The Ultimate List of RVA Parks and Playgrounds
- Richmond Area Farms Offer Families Opportunities to See, Learn about Animals
- Pick-Your-Own Orchards and Farms in the Richnond area
- Ice skating and roller skating rinks in Richmond
- Richmond’s Farmers Markets
- FREE and cheap date ideas in Richmond, Virginia
- Outdoor labyrinth walks in Richmond offer contemplation, movement
- Richmond area scenic drives
- Nature walks and scenic hiking trails for all levels in the Richmond area