June 18, 2013

Five Reasons to Visit Pixie Woods this Summer

pixie woods carousel

The girls' grandparents were visiting from out of town a couple of weekends ago, and we decided to take the whole gang to Pixie Woods.

Set behind a rainbow gate in a corner of Louis Park, Pixie Woods is charming in that way our city can be so good at: Not fussy or fancy, but full of heart.

pixie woods
This is the top of the birthday enclosure.

Here are five reasons you and your kids should visit Pixie Woods before it closes for the season:

1. It inspires imaginative play
For the most part, Pixie Woods is made up of themed play areas. In the firefighters "boot camp," Alice climbed onto a big red engine and sped off on a rescue. During our visit, she was also a princess, a pirate and one of the three little pigs.

pixie woods

2. It's cheap
Admission is $4 for kids 2 and older. Ride tickets are $2 each, and family ticket packages are available. Parking is free.

3. It's cooler there
Under a canopy of big, shady trees, the park also features several pools and streams. It's just a pleasant place to be during the summer. And bring a towel: At 1 p.m., the dragon fountain switches on and your kiddos can splash in the water.

4. It's something special.
Besides the playgrounds, there are also a kiddie train, paddle boat, vintage carousel - and rabbit burrow. (With live bunnies).

pixie woods carousel

5. It's a community effort.
Since Pixie Woods opened more than half a century ago, it has depended on the work and commitment of volunteers. Members of service clubs gather regularly to spruce up the grounds, and last year, a 16-year-old made it his Eagle Scout project. That's a cool thing to support.


Here are the details.
Address: 3121 Monte Diablo Ave., in Stockton
Hours:  From June 1 to July 31, Thursday through Sunday from noon to 5 p.m.
From Aug. 1 to Sept. 29, Saturdays and Sundays from noon to 5 p.m.
* The park is open on both Independence Day and Labor Day.
Tickets: $4 each for guests 2 and older. Rides are $2 each, with packages available.

And here's a bonus point:

It's not just for kids.

My husband and I don't get to a lot of fundraisers. Crab feed season passes us right by. But one fundraising event we've really enjoyed has been the annual wine tasting event at Pixie Woods. Contribute to the park while enjoying yummy wines and hors d'oeuvres. This year's event is Friday (June 21) from 5 to 8 p.m. Tickets are $40. More information.

Explore some other local parks here.

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