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Playground Review: Kids Together in Cary

Cary's Kids Together Playground is one of the best playgrounds in the Triangle, we think. Click on the headline for more details on a planned misting station.

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Sarah Lindenfeld Hall
Kids Together Playground at Marla Dorrel Park in Cary opened a decade ago this June. Two girls, who were only six and seven at the time, helped lead efforts  for the handicapped-accessible playground years ago. It's now probably one of the most popular playgrounds in the Triangle and one of my very favorites.

I like it because it's different. The play equipment is scattered across a gorgeous landscape, especially this time of year. And the landscaping is part of the whole experience, providing different smells and textures for kids to explore.

There are lots of climbing structures, from the main piece at the center of the park to the dragon. When my older daughter was a toddler, we spent most of our time in the large sand play area. (Just remember to bring some sand toys. We always ended up having to borrow them from smarter moms who came prepared). There are swings for both toddlers (toward the front of the park near the sand play area) and bigger kids, along with swings that are handicapped accessible.

The park at 111 Thurston Dr. in Cary will host its third annual Kids Together Family Fun &  Fitness Walk starting at 9:30 a.m. Saturday. The cost is $15 per family or $5 per person.

The event will raise money toward the purchase of a misting station at the playground, which will sit sort of in between the dragon and the main climbing structure, said Marla Dorrel, who remains very active with the park.

Dorrel told me that a water feature was part of the original plan for the park but was never completed because of budget constraints.

"We're kicking off our tenth year with the effort to do that," she said.

Kids Together Inc., a nonprofit that supports the playground and has completed as much as $30,000 in improvements over the years, is just starting to raise money and work with Cary parks on the design for the misting station. A Lazy Daze grant has helped to get them started.

Saturday's event will be informal, Dorrel said. The walk is a 1.4 mile loop. Participants are encouraged to decorate their stroller or wheelchair for the walk. There will be a decorating station before the walk and prizes for everything from the youngest participant to the snazziest wheels.

The walk starts around 10:10 a.m. and ends back at the park with bubbles, refreshments, a Beanie Baby raffle and dance party. It's all over by noon.

Click here for more information.

And check out this tour of the park.


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