JoCo Park Tour: Ironwoods Park

We explored this park as a family a couple of weeks ago on a nice evening when we were over in the area.  It is a nice park and Gretchen had a lot of fun.  Will have to go back with friends sometime soon.  Evening is a great time to go as this park is lacking in the shade department.

Ironwoods Park

14701 Mission Rd. Leawood KS

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What we love about Ironwoods Park: This is a really fun play structure and one of the things I like most is that there is a bridge from the little kid side to the big kid side so if your kid doesn’t like climbing ladders or rock walls they can still do the big slides.  Gretchen’s favorite feature was probably the long sloped tunnel.  This park has the standard swings- 2 baby and 2 big kid.  There are numerous slides and climbing opportunities, including ladders that go straight up from the ground under the structure to the top.  A nice sidewalk loops around the playground and is perfect for bikes and scooters.  There are several benches scattered around as well as a shelter right next to the park and indoor bathrooms.  This park is at the south end of Leawood and has lots of other fun features like a nature center to explore (see below for a list).

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Other things to know about Ironwoods Park:

–  Beyond the playground there is lots to do.  The Prairie Oak Nature Center is located here and has a 2 mile walking trail along with lots of reptiles, butterflies, and amphibians to check out.  It is closed on Mondays during the summer months and there is no admission fee.

– There are also cabins that can be rented and a challenge course with fun activities for older kids, like a giant swing.

– Inside this huge park is an amphitheater where events for kids take place throughout the summer as part of the Grinnin and Grooving series.  (see page 4 of this brochure for dates and more info). There will also be a Sunday evening free concert series in August and September and it’s at 6pm so early enough to take the kids.

– The Historic Oxford Schoolhouse also hosts events for kids including American Girl Doll themed events.

 

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JoCo Park Tour: Leawood City Park

This was one of our official Friday morning stops but another rainy Friday meant it didn’t happen as planned. We ended up going over the weekend to check it out when we were over in the area and I took pictures so I could share.  Spoiler alert: underwhelmed by this park.  It is in need of some TLC!  Also, no swings 😦   Still, Gretchen had a good time and it had some nice elements.

Leawood City Park

10601 Lee Blvd. Leawood, KS 66206

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What we love about Leawood City Park: The dinosaurs!  Gretchen loved the 2 dinosaurs and the alligator so much we had to bribe her to explore the rest of the playground.  They dinos rock back and forth and the gator is stationary.  The playground is really large with a separate structure for younger kids next to the dinosaurs.  I really liked that there are ramps for getting on the equipment as we’ve noticed many newer playgrounds make actually getting on the equipment a challenge for kids under the age of 4 or kids that struggle with climbing.  There is a huge shelter with picnic tables and bathrooms right next to the playground.

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Other things to know about Leawood City Park:

– It’s right next to 435 so the noise from traffic can get pretty loud depending on what time of day you are there.

– We haven’t visited it ourselves, but the Leawood Aquatic Center right next to the playground looks fun.  I spotted a whale slide and a spray ground.  We may have to check it out this summer!

– You can probably tell from the pictures that the park has seen better days.  The turf has lots of holes in it and the playground structure is really faded from the sun.  Not sure what year this playground was constructed but it needs a good sprucing!

JoCo Park Tour: Gezer Park in Leawood, KS

So my Friday morning group doesn’t have this park on our list to visit til June but we decided to visit it as a family last night after an ice cream run.  It’s kind of tucked away in a part of Leawood most people don’t frequent, but it’s a short drive from our church and our favorite ice cream spot (chocolate orange ice cream guys, it will blow your mind).

I’d seen one picture of this park online and thought the playground looked cool so I added it to our list of new parks to visit, but now that I’ve been there in person I can attest to how amazing this park is.  I think we will be spending lots of time there in the future!

Gezer Park in Leawood, KS

13251 Mission Rd. Leawood, KS 66209

What we love about this park: The huge playground structure: 4 slides, 2 climbing tubes, multiple unique climbing ladders, and built in awnings to keep the structure shaded.  Swings (seriously these can be hard to find these days!)  2 baby swings and 4 big kid ones.  The sand pit with digging toys and buried “fossils” for the kids to excavate.  The shallow man-made “creek” that winds through the park and is perfect for splashing in (bring water shoes and a change of clothes!)  Picnic tables by the playground have awnings over them to keep you shaded, and there are bigger picnic shelters available as well.  Another perk is there are real bathrooms, no port-a-potties here!  There is a trail and another little pond to see on the east end of the park but we didn’t make it over there tonight, will have to check it out next time.

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Other things to know about Gezer Park:

“The unique park design reflects the contours of the State of Israel, with the Sea of Galilee on one end and the Dead Sea on the other – connected by a 700′ stone wadi that carries water from the west to east end of the park.” source

There is a fire pit on the east side of the park that you can reserve in conjunction with one of the shelters.  Birthday party w/s’mores anyone??

Lots of great info about the park and future additions that are planned can be seen here.