Having a couple kids with energy to burn is easy when you know the best playgrounds in Central New York!  Here are 5 of our favorites.


#1 - Hugh R. Jones Elementary School, Utica

This is the girls' school and every outing starts with a trip to this playground to see if any of their friends are around. It's a nice quiet playground when school's out. It's located in South Utica between Arlington Road and Eastwood Ave. The ground under the playground is the soft foam tiles, so there are rarely any major "ouchies" here.


#2 - New York Mills Elementary School

I remember in the 80's this was one of the first massive wooden playground structures I'd ever seen. So many ladders and passages, so many places to hide. I don't remember any serious injuries, but it was probably a splinter nightmare. It was taken down and replaced with this safer, newer version which is still a lot of fun for the little ones. It was a little too big for them last summer, but this is quickly becoming the new favorite. It's located off Burrstone Road in New York Mills.


#3 - Marcy Elementary School

This playground is off River Road on Maynard Drive. It's actually 2 playgrounds - one smaller fenced in area for the littlest ones, and a big sprawling field with even more things to do in back. This year we discovered the joys of the see-saw! Didn't think I was ever going to get them to leave.


#4 - Sherrill Brook Park, New Hartford

This is a great all around park. We usually take a good long walk first and then let them burn off any energy they have left on the playground. There are lots of pavilions and grills when you want to make it a full day out. There's also a dog park and lots of trails, both paved and dirt, so in other words there's lots to explore if you've never been here before. It's on Route 12 just south of Genesee Street.


#5 - Donovan Memorial Park, Chadwicks

This park is on Elm Street, between the Route 8 Chadwicks Exit and Oneida Street. It's a large park with lots of non-playground stuff to do. There are also lots of pavilions and access to the Sauquoit Creek as it flows through the park. This seems to be one of the kids' favorites because of the long bridges.

CJ/TSM Utica

Future #1 - Donovan Memorial Park Splash Pad

The first thing the kids asked when I told them we were touring playgrounds was if they could bring their swimsuits. It definitely was warm enough but I didn't quite understand why until we arrived in Chadwicks. Right next to the regular playground at Donovan Park is the Splash Pad. The Splash Pad was closed but will be be opening for the summer on July 1st. There is an admission charge but it's usually only $2. We'll keep track of the opening date and let you know details for this season as we get them.

CJ/TSM Utica
CJ/TSM Utica

What are your favorite playgrounds in the area?