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Adaptive Playgrounds for Kids with Medical Complexities

Children discover the world through play, so adaptive playgrounds are the perfect place to spend summer days and evening. Over the years, we have learned about a number of adaptive playgrounds across the state, and want to share them with you.

All public playgrounds are required by law to have at least some activities for people with disabilities, whether it’s a wheelchair-accessible ramp to reach the play area, harnesses, or wheelchair decks on special swings. Some parks have modified digging and rocking toys, non-plastic slides (plastic can affect hearing aids due to static electricity), hand railings, and different colors on multilevel sets to help children with vision issues avoid falls.

However, it’s difficult to find the exact adaptive features at individual playgrounds until you visit the area, so we’d love to have you share your experiences.

Adaptive Playgrounds in Minnesota

Meanwhile, here are the adaptive playgrounds we found, alphabetically by location:

Did we miss any? What features does your child enjoy? Which adaptive playgrounds do you recommend? Let us know! If you’re looking for accessible playgrounds across the United States, National Public Radio has created a comprehensive database at

Originally published: June 17, 2011