Fall is perhaps the best season for outdoor play, when picnic areas are not overheated by grills and children can play for hours without overexerting. However, as the weather cools and the days become shorter it's tempting to spend more time indoors. On the other hand, less intense heat means that it is possible to spend more time outside with less risk from sun exposure.
Fall: A great time for outdoor play...as long as you do these few things:
It is simple to make a playground or park space more inviting during the fall months. General maintenance will be more intense as the leaves fall and clean up will become a more regular occurrence. While keeping your site free of debris certainly improves the aesthetic appeal of your site, keeping your space clean can also prevent injuries
. Leaves can hide obstructions in the ground, like divots, rubbish or branches, and cause people to trip. Leaves also trap moisture and as they decompose, become slick causing people to slip and fall.
You will also want to monitor your site to be sure that no areas are retaining water
. Small puddles, a natural result of weathering and traffic, can form over time. As the weather becomes cooler, these damp patches can become frozen over and become slick. Filling in any depressions and generally evening out your surface will help keep your playground or park space safe and enjoyable for years to come. Remember it's much easier to keep up with these tasks than it is to play catch up.
Most importantly be sure to take time to enjoy the space yourself
. Whether at a school, park or church, outdoor spaces should be enjoyed by all members of the community. Spending time in the space yourself will help you identify areas of need and stay on top of general maintenance.