Written by Sara Keller
Do you know those Indiana winter days that just go on forever? The ones that often come with precipitation that is neither snow nor rain, but more of an icy slush. The ones where the kids are packed full of excess energy and you’ve already gone through all your go-to indoor activities.
If you’ve been in the state for long, you know these days well. Before that chaotic, cooped-up feeling costs you or your kids your sanity, let us introduce you to some of the most magical places in central Indiana: free indoor playgrounds.
Local churches and community centers in the Indy area have noticed the need for safe, indoor spaces for parents to bring their kids to burn off energy on those bad weather days. In response, several of these facilities have installed indoor playspaces and opened their doors to Indianapolis families, free of charge.
The Park at Traders Point
If you are in the Whitestown/Zionsville area, The Park at Traders Point Christian Church is a favorite indoor playground. Besides an impressive five-story play structure, the space includes a toddler area and plenty of picnic table seating. The Park is an excellent location for a playdate, getting some work done while the kids play, or just a day out with the family.
Get Ready to Play
When you arrive at The Park, you’ll be asked to sign in with a Park Ranger. This process is quick and easy, especially if you’ve filled out a pre-registration online before arriving! Grab your printed name tags and then follow the sounds of kids having fun to the playground.
All guests are asked to remove shoes and wear socks while playing at The Park. Plenty of shoe cubbies are available and coat hooks are located just outside the play area if you have extra gear to stash away.
Five Stories of Fun
Now for the fun! The play structure is huge and has five levels of exciting, interactive elements. A mixture of stairs, ramps, padded obstacles, and nets provides just the right amount of challenge for active kiddos. Adventurers can climb all the way to the fourth level and take the big orange slide back to the ground. Two other smaller slides offer slightly less intimidating rides, if needed.
Head to the back side of the playground to find a zipline feature tucked away under the second level of the playset. Platforms on either side of the feature allow kids to reach the metal handle over their heads so they can glide to the other side. Help from adults or taller kids may be needed if the handle gets stuck between the two platforms.
The sheer size of this play set allows adults to climb around with their kids relatively easily. You’ll have to stoop and scramble in some areas, but generally, the space accommodates parents attempting to keep up with younger children.
Yes, They Have a Toddler Area!
Speaking of the little guys, there’s a designated toddler zone towards the back of the playground. This area is enclosed on three sides to shelter the space from older kids playing on the big structure. Wee ones three and under can enjoy safe play on the padded floor, small climbing structure, and dual-sided slide that are all just their size.
A few oversize, moveable foam blocks are provided for climbing, sliding, and tumbling. Babes can toddle under the climbing structure to find a wall of interactive tactile puzzles and games.
Food is Welcome in the Picnic Area
Need to refuel during your playtime? The Park has plenty of benches and picnic tables, perfect for when you need a lunch or snack break. Please have your children keep their food in this area only! Parents also find the picnic space useful for bringing a laptop to get some work done or simply chatting with friends while the kids play independently.
Another amazing convenience? Bathrooms are located INSIDE the play area! No need to exit and search around the church for restrooms when the potty-training preschooler needs to go NOW. There are also water fountains available in the space to keep everyone hydrated. All that running and climbing can make a kid thirsty!
Know Before You Go
- Enter through the doors for The Park rather than the main church doors. Signage in the parking lot clearly directs guests to the correct entry.
- Bring socks! To keep the play equipment safe and clean for everyone, anyone who plans to play must remove shoes and wear socks.
- Adults must present a government-issued ID which will be scanned prior to entry.
- Save time when you arrive by completing pre-registration ahead of time. This is not required. You can choose to register with a Park Ranger when you show up for the first time.
- The Park is a popular place to play! The playground may reach capacity and you’ll have to wait for others to exit before your playtime can begin.
- All kids must be accompanied by an adult over the age of 18.
Wednesday-Thursday: 3-7 pm
Friday: 8 am-12 pm & 1-5 pm
Saturday: 8 am-12 pm
Sunday: 1-5 pm
*Please note that while these hours are accurate at publishing, they may change to accommodate limited staffing, special events, or dangerous weather conditions. We recommend always calling ahead or checking social media to confirm that the playground will be open when you arrive.
You never have to fear a long winter day again! Next time the weather is keeping you cooped up, plan a trip to The Park at Traders Point Christian Church to let the kids get those wiggles out.
Looking for a FREE indoor playground on your side of town? See where you can find more places like this around Indy!
6590 South Indianapolis Road