Food Fun and Facts Build Your Kids a Backyard Playground Without Spending a Fortune
Build Your Kids a Backyard Playground Without Spending a Fortune
The next time your kids come home from a friend’s house and beg
you for a backyard playground of their own, surprise them with an
answer they’re not expecting. Say yes. You’ll be doing them a big
Research has found that playgrounds are essential not
only to a child’s physical strength, but mental well-being. They help
kids develop cognitive reasoning and problem solving skills, and
encourage them to use their imaginations and creativity.
Having heard about the research, Daniel and Bethany
Jacques of Hadley, Mass., recently decided to invest in a play set for
their sons Joshua, Matthew and John. “We thought it would be good for
the boys,” says Daniel. “It was actually more of a Mother’s Day present
to my wife -- to give the kids something to do.”
They knew they wanted a wooden play set, one that would
be sturdy and last a long time; but when they found out how much one
would cost, the Jacques’ were shocked. Depending on the features they
come with, wooden play sets typically cost between $2,000 and $3,000.
“While doing our research online, we came across a company that
advertised a high-quality play set for under $1,000, and that’s who we
decided to go with,” says Jacques.
The company they found, Detailed Play Systems, has been
around since 1998. Founder and owner, Karl Jessen, is a dad who had
found himself in a similar predicament just five years ago. “When my
boys were four and one-and-a-half, I started looking into getting a
backyard play set for them, and the prices were so high, I decided to
build one myself,” he says.
When he started shopping around for supplies, Jessen
realized the task wouldn’t be as easy as he first thought. He had to go
to different places to find the swings, slide, monkey bars, hardware
and lumber. “No one was selling materials that met my standards as a
kit, and that gave me an idea.”
Jessen decided to go into the playground building
business after realizing he had stumbled onto a niche that needed to be
filled. “Our business plan is designed to meet the needs of the
cost-conscious consumer who wants to save approximately 50 percent off
the cost of comparable prefabricated wooden forts and swing sets,
without sacrificing the safety, size, quality, or features of their
children’s backyard playground,” says Jessen. “The key to the savings
is low overhead and the willingness of our customers to spend about 8
hours time cutting and drilling hand-selected wood prior to starting to
build something special for their children."
Detailed Play Systems provides its customers with the
Detailed Plans needed to build their playground, the hardware, swings
and slide. The wood is not included, but each kit contains a Lumber
Purchase Guide that shows exactly what wood needs to be purchased to
build each configuration, giving parents the added benefits of being
able to choose the type of wood, and to hand-select each piece if
desired for quality control..
Kits from Detailed Play Systems range from $169 for a
basic Jungle Fort Builder Kit to $900 and up for the works -- a dual
fort plus swing set combination. The company’s most popular kit, the
Jungle Fort Swing Set kit, sells for $499. It features a large 6 foot
by 6 foot fort with sandbox beneath complete with inclined step ladder,
gangplank ramp, a slide and attached 3-position swing set.
Included in the price are the Detailed Plans, all
galvanized hardware, and the playground equipment components needed.
For the Jungle Fort Swing Set, these include a ten-foot Wave slide,
belt swings, trapeze bar, and handgrips for safety.
The kits are fully customizable, a multitude of
playground configurations can be built, and the sets are modular so
they can be added to over time. Accessories such as periscopes,
telescopes, steering wheels, sandbox covers, and specialty swings --
full bucket or flat swings -- can be added on to kits or purchased
individually and used to upgrade an existing backyard playground."
“The idea here is to help our customers provide quality
playgrounds for their kids that won’t break the bank. We are able to
keep costs down because our customers don’t have to pay for the labor
overhead, machinery, or wood processing,” says Jessen. “Shipping the
woo d alone can easily add $500 to the cost.”
If you decide to build a playground yourself, Jessen says
you can count on the project taking about a weekend to complete. He
estimates about 8 hours for the wood processing, which includes cutting
the wood to size and drilling the holes for the bolts, and another 8
hours for assembly.
“Depending on how large or small your chosen playground
configuration is, your tool setup, and how much help you have, it may
take more or less time,” he says. Only basic skills -- measuring,
cutting straight lines, and drilling holes -- are required. “Many of
our customers -- having had no prior wood working experience -- have
built their own playground for about half the cost thanks to our
Detailed Plans that make it easy.”
“It took us a couple of weekends to get it all done,”
says Jacques. “And it was a family project that was rewarding for us to
accomplish together. My father-in-law and brother-in-law helped.”
Once you have your completed your project, you may want
to add such safety measures as mulch made from recycled rubber,
landscape timbers made from recycled plastic, bumper pads, and nonskid
strips for places where kids need a better grip. All of these kits and
add-ons are available direct from Detailed Play Systems.
The company is based in New Jersey, but does most of its
business online and through catalogs. To order a catalog, call (800)
398-7565 or log on to www.detailedplay.com. Shipping is available in
the 48 contiguous United States.
Courtesy of ARA Content
Copyright 2002 FamilyContent.com All rights reserved.
Swing - N - Slide Pioneer Custom Ready - To - Build Swing Set Kit
The Pioneer Custom Kit is perfect for a small backyard. Purchase kit, choose from 4 swing set design options, purchase lumber and customize with accessories.
Custom kits allow for the best project flexibility and customization.
NOTE: Lumber, slide and accessories sold separately.
Kit Includes Fully Illustrated Plans, (2) Swing Seats, (1) Iron Man Rings, (3 pairs) Swing Hangers, (6) EZ Frame Brackets
It's up to you - simply choose your accessories, lumber and nails/screws (sold separately)
Up to 6 children can play-Designed for the Do-It-Yourself family-For Residential Use Only
FREE 2 Day Shipping! Please Click on the above image for more information about this neat backyard playground set kit!
Food Fun and Facts has over 900 pages of Recipes,Household Hints and Homemaking Information.
Use the Menu, or for a quick Search, use the Site Search Bar Below. Enjoy!
Lifetime Geometric Dome Climber Play Center
Lifetime Dome Climber Play Center provides a 10-Foot Radius climbing structure for 3 to 12 year old children.
If you're looking for big toys to keep the kids entertained in your own backyard, check out this awesome big toy from Lifetime--the geometric Dome Climber.
This is a big toy that several kids can enjoy at the same time. Big toys like our Dome Climber help your child to develop strong muscles and coordination.
Our Dome Climber is a fun, geometric design with real rock climbing hand grips.
It is constructed of powder-coated steel to prevent rusting and peeling. Like all of our big toys, the Dome Climber is made from top-quality construction, and built to last--a big toy that will be a backyard attraction for many years.
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Constructed with 1.5" diameter and 33" lengths of tubing.
Heavy duty construction; weather and rust-resistant powder-coated steel
Strong, interactive design; high-density polyethylene (HDPE) climbing grips
Suitable for children ages 3-12; 1,200 lb. total weight capacity
10 ft. Radius when Assembled; 6 ft. radius safety zone suggested
Please click on the above image for more information about this fun Playground Climber Center!
The Ace Flyer Play Gym is constructed of powder-coated steel and high-density polyethylene (HDPE) plastic.
No rusting, cracking, or fading. And no splinters! This is a wonderful backyard attraction that will look as good as new long after your children have outgrown it.
Why settle for an ordinary see saw when you can have twice the fun with this exciting double teeter totter airplane?
The Ace Flyer Play Gym can seat up to seven kids to provide up and down, side to side see saw action. Interactive dashboard, spinning wheel, and propeller will make your aspiring young pilots feel like they're really in control.
The Ace Flyer Play Gym will set their imaginations soaring! Feature a double-seat cockpit, two teeter totters, Interactive dashboard, spinning Wheels and propeller, and adjustable heights. Please click on the above image for more information about this fun Outdoor teeter totter!
Backyards for Kids: Playhouses, Sandboxes, Tree Forts, Swing Sets, Sports Areas, and More
Give them room to roam outdoors and fun places to play and you`ll create backyard memories that will last a lifetime--with the added benefit of getting kids away from their computers and video games.
Like its successful predecessor, Kids` Places to Play, Backyards for Kids is loaded with ideas and how-to instruction for building projects like swing sets and tree houses, with innovative ideas for integrating play areas into the overall landscape design that adults will appreciate as well.
Author Ziba Kashef, who has a young son, was editor in chief of Pregnancy magazine and was also previously on the editorial staff at McCall`s and Parenting magazines.
Features: Step-by-step photos and instructions to help readers build numerous structures from scratch, as well as detailed tips on how to assemble some of the typical play structure kits available today, including a play set with swings and a pre-fab log cabin playhouse .
More landscaping advice on kid-friendly gardens and plants, as well as plants to avoid A strong focus on promoting physical activities--from basketball and baseball and soccer to skateboarding and trampolines--by creating fun and adventurous outdoor areas that kids will want to choose over electronic entertainment Please click on the above image for more information about this Backyard Playhouse book!