Address: Atlanta Student Movement Blvd/Fair Street at Northside Dr. NW
Click here to get directions - approximate; see below for where to park
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Parking: small parking lot along Atlanta Student Movement Blvd – you may not park along Larkin Street or Northside Dr.
Age Range: older preschool and up mainly, but toddlers could work too
Ground Cover: packed rubber mulch
Features: There are basically four sections to this playground:
– Swings – 2 big kid swings and 2 baby swings
– Spinning Things – 2 seated turnabouts and one standing turnabout
– NEO 360 Play System – basically an outdoor video game. You pick what game you want to play (things like Ninja, Surround Sound, Firetruck, Marathon, etc) with how many players you want to play (1 or 2, although you could have a bunch if you wanted) and when the lights blink on, you press the button. There is a timer or a counter (depending on what game) and you play to your heart’s content. You can totally get a workout doing this jumping and running around! To put it simply, the lights blink off and on and you are supposed to touch them when they light up. You run around trying to press these lit up buttons.
– Hexagonal Cable Climber – 17’ of climbing fun. See the pictures!
Surrounding Park Area: Concrete walking trails surround the park (great for scooters, early bike riders, or rollerskaters), basketball court, tennis court, greenspace. There is also a large art sculpture in honor of C.R. Johnson (a band director at Morris College).
Shade: Yeah, the playground is sunny. The park itself has a lot of nice mature trees though, just not above the playground.
Seating: Several benches surrounding the playground.
Stroller/Wheelchair Access: Yes
Safety: It’s up to your own discretion if you want your kid climbing up the 17’ cable climber. J
Cons: There was quite a bit of litter the day I went and a homeless guy going through the trashcan right next to the playground. Nice, huh? Not necessarily something I want to see everyday, and while I may write that off as one time occurrence, it was very obvious that several homeless people live in the park. Nobody bothered me. Nobody talked to me. Just something to be aware of.
Overall Assessment: This is a brand new park that the City of Atlanta opened on April 27, 2011. It gets major points for being so unique. No where else have I seen a hexagonal climber this tall. Really? 17 feet!! And this NEO 360 play system thing – I drove up and said in my car, “what is that??” Of course, and then my son repeated that over and over. Honestly, it is really cool once you play with it a little. My son just wanted to stand inside this thing and dance (which is totally awesome). When the music stopped, he said, “Mommy, it stopped working!” He didn’t quite get that you have to press the buttons to make it go (he’s almost 3), so this would be good for, let’s say, an elementary school kid and up. Someone who understands competition more and someone who can follow instructions more. I know I would have loved it at that age.
Overall, I like this playground. My kids aren’t old enough for the stuff in it, but I think that this playground fills a much-needed niche for older kids to play. Playgrounds are not just for 3 year olds or even 5 year olds. They are for everyone.
Check out this press release regarding Cleopas R. Johnson Park.