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Best Playgrounds in Southeast Michigan

Family fun in the sun is a breeze in metro Detroit, the Ann Arbor area and beyond with these cool amped-up outdoor play spots. Get the 2013-14 details here!

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Oakland County

Paradise Peninsula

  • Address: Waterford Oaks, 1702 Scott Lake Road, Waterford
  • Phone: 248-858-0916
  • Hours: dawn-dusk, April-October

After $250,000 and a year of construction, this revolutionary structure built to mimic Michigan's natural landscape is now a big family lure. It has a challenge course, a tree fort, a log cabin, an imitation beach and sand dunes and a ground surface designed to look like Michigan's waterways. Plus, it meets the Americans with Disabilities Act requirements to promote play for all levels of ability.

Playscape at Catalpa Oaks County Park

  • Address: 27725 Greenfield Road Southfield
  • Phone: 248-858 0916
  • Hours: dawn-dusk year-round

A classically fun play structure with a modern twist, simple, streamlined and oh-so irresistible: the brand-new Catalpa Oaks playscape. The super-cool colors will attract your kid's attention and the high and low points are tailored to age with two separate structures for teeny tikes and teenyboppers!

Playscape at Civic Center Park

  • Address: 2525 Joslyn Road, Lake Orion
  • Phone: 248-391-0304
  • Hours: 8 a.m.-11 p.m. year-round

This park caters to both big and little kids. There are two play structures – one for ages 2-5 and another for 5-12. The little kids' structure has a couple of small slides, ladders and a bridge (be sure to check out the dino slide!). Over in the big kids' structure, you'll find some taller slides – including a spiral tyke – and crazier ladders; there's even a mini zip line toy. The park hosts two sets of swings, too – one of which includes baby swings. (And if you stop by during the winter, there's a great hill nearby to go sledding on.)

River Woods Park

  • Address: 300 River Woods Drive, Auburn Hills
  • Phone: 248-370-9353
  • Hours: dawn-dusk year-round

Located next to Auburn Hills Skate Park, this riverside play area is fully equipped with a large play structure including slides swings and climbing goodness. Your kid's got options here. Pick up the b-ball and play some pig or bring a fishing pole and cast a line.

Soccer Complex Playground

  • Address: Red Oaks, 1455 E. 13 Mile Road, Madison Heights
  • Phone: 248-589-2294
  • Hours: dawn-dusk year-round

Equipped with four slides, two towers, a coaster climber and bouncy scientifically engineered Fibar-brand mulch, it's easy to see why this primary-colored play station made our list. It's officially for kids 5-12, but according to Sue Wells, Oakland County's parks and recreation operations manager, preschoolers and adults can have a good time at this playground, too – which also boasts a rock climber and three "tilted sky runners."

Wooden Playground at Booth Park

  • Address: North Old Woodward Avenue and Harmon Street, Birmingham
  • Phone: 248-530-1642
  • Hours: dawn-dusk year-round

These days, it takes a lot to make something remarkable. But don't worry, playground aficionados: Booth doesn't disappoint. Parks and recreation manager Carrie Laird says it's the city's most popular jungle gym thanks to some pretty unique amenities. And with 20,000 square feet to play with, it's no wonder the community-built playground packs so much punch.

Consider the lookout tower that mimics the city's old fire station, a misting wheel that sprays water on demand, and an artificial turf hill that makes sledding – or sliding – a year-round activity. The tot lot is complete with a full-size play trolley, there's a parental patio with chairs, tables and umbrellas, and a giant gravel labyrinth for kids to get lost in. Even the most seasoned playground veteran can't deny this place has got it all – and more.

Washtenaw County

Playgrounds at Independence Lake Park

  • Address: 3200 Jennings Road, Whitmore Lake
  • Phone: 734-449-4437
  • Hours: 8 a.m.-dusk year-round

Go wild at Independence Lake Park with three separate playscapes! The large, handicap-accessible structure has multiple components including slides, bridges, climbers and tunnels, as well as a track ride. There's a separate swing area, too. A Spray Zone also is open for public use during the summer season, with variety of water features that shoot, spray and gush. It's for kids 12 and under, but all ages can enjoy the refreshing splashes.

Old to new | New to old
Aug 1, 2011 02:49 pm
 Posted by  jellokites

St. Clair has a nice park, Greig park/Imagination stations on Carney just north of Fred Moore.

Aug 12, 2011 01:49 pm
 Posted by  lunamartinmi

Great list! Thanks!

May 26, 2014 10:45 am
 Posted by  Big Worm

Thanks for the info. We need more park listings and information from the great parents of southeast michigan.

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