Remember the house that, as a kid, you always wanted to hang out at? What did it have that made that house so enjoyable? Probably, there was always something to do, great snacks, and lots of friends. If you want to have the same kind of house for your kids, you’ll need more than a lawn. Let’s take a look at a few draws that will bring in the kids, and keep yours at home.
Having a pool in your backyard will attract more than just the neighborhood kids. You will be hosting many pool parties for months and months during the warm weather. So, get ready. If this is something you want to invest in, call in the contractors. There is a very wide range of prices and amenities, so shop around. You may be surprised how affordable it can be.
Gone are the days of the dangerous trampolines. They new models are actually in-ground contraptions that are fun and so much safer. It’s amazing how much fun it can be to simply jump up and down. Kids gravitate to this type of entertainment and parents like the energy it burns off.
Splish Splash Pad
Originally designed for public spaces, the installation is now affordable enough for homeowners. Water splashes, bubbles, squirts and sprays out of all sorts of spigots and faucets for hours of fun. They are built to play in and around and keep kids running and playing for hours.
A simple basketball hoop attached to the garage used to be enough to keep the kids in the neighborhood busy. Today, however, many homeowners’ associations do not even allow them. Enter the sports court. This is exactly what it sounds like; a unit made of several sports components. Think of a jungle gym only instead of swings and monkey bars you have a court for basketball, tennis, volley ball, or even roller hockey. A great solution that is sure to draw the kids to your house in droves.
Keep kids and kids-at-heart happy with a putting green installed in your backyard. With a little imagination and some greens, either real or artificial, you can put to your heart’s content. You can buy prefabricated putting greens that are ready to install, or you can design your own. This bit of backyard fun is relatively inexpensive and, who knows, it could be the beginning of an entire miniature golf course right at home.
Tennis Or Racquet Ball
Maybe you don’t have the room or the finances to install a regulation size tennis court or racquet ball court, but with a little imagination you can probably string a net where you could volley a ball back and forth or hit the ball up against a tall wall or fence built for this purpose in mind.
Even a small yard can benefit from a paved, winding bike path along the perimeter. Kids get to enjoy their wheels in a safe, contained area. It’s especially nice for toddlers just learning to ride their tricycles and training wheel bikes. Parents can enjoy teaching their little ones to learn how to ride away from the dangers of vehicles.
Every kid loves a home away from home in the backyard. Parents love them, too. No matter what you call it, a separate space out in the backyard, away from the grown-ups is a wonderful draw to your house. Keep the construction simple and sturdy, and provide a few comforts, and your kids and their friends will find this backyard haven to be one of their favorites.
This is a great trend that is enjoyed by all ages. On a balmy evening in your backyard, turn off the lights and turn on the movie. You can build a movie theatre several ways. Hang a white sheet on the side of the house and use a projecting DVD player to show the movie. You can have a permanent white wall painted on the side of your garage or a fence. Portable inflatable movie theaters are also available, which include the screen and a place for the projector to sit. There are also now weather resistant flat-screen televisions that you could show movies on. Any way you do it, set up some comfortable seating, get the popcorn popping, and watch the seats fill up fast.
Rock Climbing Wall
A trend that is sweeping playgrounds everywhere is now available in backyard sizes. These can be free-standing models or built in. Find a contractor who can help you plan for your particular backyard space. You’ll need a properly cushioned floor and a sturdy surface, then the design is up to you. There are a variety of fun climbing wall components that look authentic or are brightly colored.
This can be as simple as a refrigerator and freezer that is convenient to your backyard playground, or as complicated as a soda fountain set up. If you can steal a little space inside your garage side entrance door, frame it off and put in a snack bar that’s kid size, complete with mini fridge for drinks, freezer for popsicles, and a few containers of snacks that are ready to grab and go. Add a couple stools and a counter or table and chairs for the kids to sit and relax for a moment before getting back to their games outside. If the kids are older, include a pizza oven for a real treat.
Small children especially love the concept of a hidden garden within the confines of a backyard. Create the mysterious garden by closing it off behind some shrubs or a trellis covered in vines. Once they get behind the “walls” of their secret garden, be sure to have little niches filled with bird baths, garden fairies, gnomes, tiny chairs and tables, or anything else that is surprising and fun. This quiet retreat is often a perfect place for kids to escape together and share whispered fun with their friends.
Having a comfortable backyard for grownups and having a backyard that attracts kids are sometimes two different things. Yes, you want comfortable seating and a place to eat in both designs. But, when it comes to drawing in the kids, and keeping them happy, you need activities. Consider one or two of these ideas to get you started having that house that kids want to go to.