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Rock City: Mount Diablo State Park

Love this place!! Great for both kids and adults… huge sandstone rock formations to climb, small caves to explore, gorgeous views, fun hiking trails… what’s not to like?? You’ll find Rock City in Mount Diablo State Park, on South Gate Road, near the Live Oak Campground.  For more information about Mount Diablo, visit the website……

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Yoda Statue: Lucasfilm Headquarters, San Francisco

For my young Padawan, we made the pilgrimage to the Lucasfilm Headquarters in the Presidio to see the life-sized Yoda statue…. Photos taken June 20th, 2013 *** Interested in going?  You’ll find the Yoda fountain in front of the Lucasfilm Headquarters, located in the Presidio, at 1 Letterman Drive, San Francisco.  There is a security…

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Shadow Cliffs: Pleasanton

Yesterday, my son had a school field trip to Shadow Cliffs Regional Recreation Area, a large park located in Pleasanton, near the Livermore border.  The students have been learning about the life cycle through the study of trout.  They went to Shadow Cliffs to release baby trout into the lake.  But they also had a…

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Fun! Magic Mountain Playground, San Mateo

I have to rate this playground one the best in the entire San Francisco Bay Area.  We’ve been here a few times over the years, and it’s always so much fun.  If you have a kid who’s into knights, princesses, dragons, and/or castles, this park is a must-visit.  The three-story slide is a highlight! Interested…

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Building Forts! Adventure Playground, Berkeley

The Adventure Playground in Berkeley… the only place I know in the San Francisco Bay Area where kids are encouraged to get creative with saws, hammers & nails, and paints to build forts.  And play on their creations!  Photos from our school field trip to the playground yesterday… For more information, check out this post…

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Cemetery Fun!

The other day, while playing at Dublin’s Heritage Park, my son suggested we head to the attached cemetery (Dublin Pioneer Cemetery) to look for monsters. Why not? We spent the next hour searching for, running away from, and battling monsters. Here’s a post I wrote last spring about letterboxing (treasure hunting) at this cemetery…  Letterboxing: …

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Scrambling: Fun on the Rocks

I wish more city parks had rock structures like these for kids to scramble on.  The following photos were taken earlier this week at Emerald Glen Park in Dublin, California.  The boulders challenge kids in a way the regular play structures don’t.  In order to climb these rocks, children have to use their minds to…

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Climbing the Wall…

An awesome way to burn some kid energy is to head out for some  rock climbing… park style. For a list of our favorite parks in the San Francisco East Bay with fun rock wall features, see my post… Outdoor Climbing Walls. Photos taken at Val Vista Park, Pleasanton.

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Water Play! Val Vista Park, Pleasanton

It was HOT earlier this week! Tuesday was a perfect afternoon to spend at one of our local parks with great water features… Val Vista Park in Pleasanton, California. For more parks in the San Francisco East Bay that have great water play areas, check out… Ten Fun East Bay Parks with Free Water Features

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Kids ‘n Carousels

What is it with kids and carousels?  I’ve given up trying to figure out what children love about them.  I only know they do. Does your child have a favorite?  Do you have a favorite memory of one from childhood?  Please share! *** Links to carousels in the San Francisco Bay Area Creativity Carousel, San…

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Wow! Adventure Playground, Berkeley

Bored of the usual playground facilities?  Then check this one out! The Adventure Playground in Berkeley is a special place, unlike any other park we’ve experienced.  The structures are all built by children (with parental and staff supervision), using provided tools (hammers, nails, saws, and paint).  This place encourages serious creativity!  It’s best for kids…

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Great Climbing Structures, Creekside Park, San Ramon

A friend recommended that I check out this park, and we finally made it there a few weeks ago. Creekside Park in San Ramon is a fun little park, with two play areas; one for little kids, one for older kids. This is one of the few parks around that might actually be challenging for…

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Fun! Children’s Fairyland, Oakland

Children’s Fairyland is a storybook park that’s been around longer than Disneyland.  In fact, it inspired Walt Disney to create his Magic Kingdom.  Fortunately, Fairyland has maintained it’s small size and original charm since it opened in 1950.  I have fond memories of visiting the park when I was a child, during visits to see…

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Outdoor Climbing Walls

Climbing has become a new passion for my son in recent weeks. I signed him up for some classes at a local climbing gym this month, and, with only three lessons so far, I’m surprised at how much his climbing has improved. He would be ecstatic if we could go to the gym every day,…