One of the regular features I want to get going on this blog is reviewing local places to take kids, entertain kids or feed kids. There are so many parents looking for ways to spend time with their children outside the house and to be honest, when you are tired, it is hard to come up with ideas.
So Like A Dad wants to help. I am going to start reviewing all the places we take our boys. Parks, places to eat, indoor gyms, stores and many other examples of where to take kids. You get the idea. I will share the good, the bad and the ugly.
To start, I want to review a place we went a few weeks ago on a crappy weather day.
Aplaydia in Bedford, Nova Scotia.
Aplaydia, is basically an indoor play facility for parents to watch their kids get exercise, interact with other kids and most importantly, keep everyone from going crazy at home.
It is a small venue that maximizes the space for play and a comfy part for parents.
The inside is broken into four main sections at least from an outside perspective.
Shoes and gear
There is the front entrance that is pretty much for shoes, coats and any other gear. You can’t take strollers into the play area so this is the place to park.
Then you have the play area. It is a giant indoor castle type setup with slides, ladders, mats and tunnels to run in and out of. The thing is huge and looks like a lot of fun. There is a side section for smaller kids that has padded blocks and other soft toys.
The floors are all mats and very soft. It is as safe as I think you can get it. Everything has a bounce factor added to it because once you see several kids running around at once, you get why.
Next you have what looks like the parent lounge just off to the side. It offers comfy couches, chairs and free wi-fi. Ideally they don’t want the parents to play in the kid area so it is great to have this side spot. The only problem is, it is so busy, it is hard to find a spot to sit.
A lot of parents on lap tops, tablets and other devices. Personally, I would rather be watching my kids, but hey, that’s just me.
Then off at the end is where you have the kitchen part. There are tables, a little sink and microwave area and a fridge. Of course they want to keep food and eating away from the play area. This is a great setup.
You really can go there for hours and not have to leave.
Forget to pack food or drink? Not a problem. Just outside, there are numerous options for food. Pizza, Tim Hortons, a variety store and many other spots. It is a haven for parents looking to keep those kids happy.
Of course there are change rooms, a bathroom right by the play area and many other parental helpers that the place clearly thought of ahead of time. They don’t want you leaving. Okay, that is not true. They want you coming back over and over.
So now you know the layout, how about an opinion.
We went on a Saturday, so that is the busiest day to go. As we walked in, there was 30-40 kids running around like crazy. The place seems small but once you are in there, it works.
Like I said, a lot of parents working on computers or talking to each other. Not really a lot of watching the kids. You could tell the kids that were not being watched as they were a bit of a terror.
Our son had a good time although he is not a big fan of crowds. So he stuck to his favourite things. He had a lot of fun though.
Word spreads fast of any issues as well. Apparently a kid peed way up in the bowels of the castle and that news traveled quickly.
We did get spots on a couch eventually and had a good chat with a few parents. The usual small talk, mostly about how cute our baby was…..
I would go back. I could do with less kids. I need to remember it is not for me.
But at $8 to stay as long as you want, there was certainly value there.
Have you been? What did you think? I would like to hear.
Location: Bedford, Nova Scotia
About: Aplaydia is THE place for children up to 9 years old to play all year around. A two-level soft-play unit equipped with slides, bridges, vertical climbs and tunnels will provide endless fun for children. A separate toddler area with its own soft play toys and floor toys will occupy the busiest explorer.
Cost: $7.99 for kids 2+, free for parents