Archive for the ‘playgrounds’ Tag

Now That’s a Teeter Totter!

I don’t know where or when this photo was taken, but this is how they used to do it in Minneapolis parks. This is how above-average kids used to play. Kid-powered thrill rides provided the adrenaline rush. And there isn’t a single teeter-totter crash helmet in sight — unless that girl has padding in her bow.

I’ve read every Attorney’s Report in park board annual reports, as well as all attorney reports in park board proceedings since 1904, when playground quipment was first installed in Minneapolis parks, and I don’t recall seeing even one report of a lawsuit over injuries on teeter-totters — or any other playground apparatus. Maybe there were no injuries and it was simply the fear of injuries that caused the teeter-totters to be taken down — or scaled down. It’s been years since I’ve seen one. Do they still exist?

Compare this to the two newest playgrounds in Minneapolis parks at Beard Plaisance and William Berry Park near the Lake Harriet Bandstand. Nice, and big improvements, but pretty tame. My favorite playground equipment is still the stuff at Brackett. First they had the Rocket, and now they have innovative equipment that’s quite unlike other parks.

More importantly, how did moms keep those dresses so white?

If you recognize the location above, or can guess the year, please send a note.

David C. Smith  minneapolisparkhistory[at]q.com