Who: Globe feature writer James Burnett’s wife and son
Where: Playdipity, in Cohasset
What: Educational romps in a weatherproof play area
As much as I like to tease my wife that my job is as tough as her job – being a stay-at-home mom with our 2-year-old, Max – I know that there is no greater challenge than keeping a toddler occupied and happy.
So generally, my wife gets points for innovation and patience in “designing” Max’s schedule. But I was especially impressed when she and other moms in her circle recently discovered Playdipity, a parent-supervised indoor play and party center in Cohasset.
The 2,300-square-foot facility, which opened in a storefront last June, is bright and airy, with colorful walls and a pretty neat collection of wooden jungle gyms, playhouses, push toys, and other manipulative toys. And for a $9 admission fee per child, kids who are crawlers or older can come and play practically all day, almost all week. Most of the weekend, Playdipity can be rented for private parties. But don’t forget, Playdipity is not a day-care center. It’s a parent-supervised facility. You play with your kids or watch them.
Why does this place matter?
It’s weatherproof, which parents who had kids home from school during the blizzard could no doubt appreciate.
“I opened Playdipity with my sister,” says owner and manager Tamsin Garside. “We were both stay-at-home moms looking for stuff to do in the cold months and hot, hot summer months, when your children simply can’t be outside for any length of time. And we hadn’t been really happy with all our options.”
With her background in accounting and management and her sister’s background as an interior decorator, Garside says they came up with the open floor plan that visitors see now.
“We wanted clear sightlines, so parents or other caregivers sitting in the kitchenette area in the back left corner can see their children at virtually any angle.”
As cool as the open play times are, Playdipity’s specialty is the events for kids. They come at no extra cost and offer a nice blend of learning with play.
“We recently had Vegetable Circus in,” Garside says. “They performed for the kids and read to them and promoted, in a fun way, the benefits of vegetables. And Wednesday [Feb. 20], Mother Goose will be here.”
That’s right, Mother Goose in full costume, reading to the kids and posing for pictures from 10 a.m. to noon and again from 3 to 5 p.m.
And dads and grandfathers, there’s room for you, too.
Each month on one Sunday, Playdipity hosts “Dads and Donuts,” a time for men on kid duty, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., complete with doughnuts and coffee. The next one is scheduled for Feb. 24.
.firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @JamesBurnett.