I have wanted to buy a wooden playset for our backyard for over a year now. I have asked around for recommendations on where to buy in the past, but it can be a very complicated process. You have to think about how big you want it to be – do you want a fabric roof on the deck or a wood one? Do you want a rock wall? How many swings do you need it to hold? Do you want monkey bars or a single beam to hold those swings? And finally, how big of a slide do you want? Well, thanks to Sara H., a loyal reader of CSP, here is a detailed overview of three retailers to help you find a playset to fit your needs.
Backyard Adventures – Offers four different styles of playsets – the Backyard, Adventure, Olympian and Titan Treehouses. They are all made of Cedar/Redwood and have limited lifetime warranties on the wood. The Backyard Treehouse is a new offering that accommodates smaller yards and the Titan is the largest. They offer wood and tarp roof types depending on the style, and the deck heights range from 5 to 6 feet. The deck size is 5 feet by 5 feet on all sets, but the Titan comes with two levels for 45 square feet of play. The Adventure Treehouse offers monkey bars for the beam type, room for three swings and a 10-foot slide. The Olympian has the single beam, room for four swings and a 12-foot rocket slide. Only one version of the Olympian comes with the rock wall. If you go to backyardadventures.com you can request a free brochure. Costs range from $2,963.10 to $4,676.00 and discounts are available.
Rainbow Play Systems – There are many sizes to choose from – Fiesta, Carnival, Sunshine, Rainbow, Monster and King Kong. Sara researched the mid-sized system, Sunshine Clubhouse, with Extras and with Monkey Combo. These both are made with Cedar/Redwood and have a lifetime warranty on the wood and the slides (not limited like Backyard Adventures). The roof types are tarp with deck heights of 5 feet. The Clubhouse with Monkey Combo comes with the monkey bars and room for three swings; the other version has the single beam and only two swings. They both come with a 10 foot slide and a rock wall. A trapeze and/or rope swing is included as well. Prices for these styles range from $3,599 – 3,799. Sara also found out that that the Sunray brand playsets sold at Costco are made by the same company as Rainbow Play Systems. The Sunray at Costco sells for $1699 (much cheaper) but you have to find someone to install it. You can also request a free catalog at Rainbowplaysystems.com and find the showroom in Charlotte. Check out the website because they list showroom samples on sale.
Creative Playthings – Offers three types of wood construction, Naturaline™ made of 100% pure Redwood and comes with a Limited Lifetime Warranty, Special Pine™ which is #1 Grade Southern Pine with a Limited Lifetime Warranty and Basic Pine™ which is the most affordable and comes with a 10 year Limited Warranty. They all come with a rock wall and have room for three swings. Sara looked into the Cresent set which is part of the Naturaline. It has a 5 x 5 deck size and 5 foot deck height, and wood roof. It comes with single beams or monkey bars and a 10 foot slide. The Back to Back glider is included and costs range from $2,929 and 3,299. The Lexington is part of the Special Pine collection and has a 5 x 7 deck with a tarp roof. It also comes with single bean or monkey bars with a 10 foot slide. Back to back glider is also included and costs range from $2,429 to 2,729. The Williamsburg is also a Special Pine set and has a 5 x 5 deck size, 10 inch slide, and comes with single beam or monkey bars. The Back to Back glider is included and costs range from $2,229 to 2,529. Go to http://www.creativeplaythings.com/ to find a dealer as well as download coupons.
I hope this is useful for all of the moms out there looking to get your kids outside this spring. Another place to check is Craig’s list to see if anyone in the area is selling one. Or let me know, I would be happy to buy a used one if someone is looking to sell. And thanks again to Sara for all of her hard work!
Thank you so much for this info. We are in the market to replace ours. This will be very helpful 🙂
why would you need a lifetime warranty for a swing set. Your kids will only play on them several years. Seems odd to me. I never did understand why they are so expensive. Your children will only play on them to about age 11/12. So your lucky to get a good 5/6 years use out of them. I loved my metal one back in the 70’s!!haha
my husband is a do-it-yourself type of guy so we got the kit from Lowes. Everything is pre-cut and pre-drilled so it was pretty easy to put together. Our yard is so small that we don’t have room for swings so all the options the kit has works well for us. Plus it was a lot less expensive.
We got one from Heartland and LOVE it. It is only 17 feet wide, has two swings, a trapeze bar, and a tire swing. The rock wall is great and the set can withhold the weight of our entire family playing on it! FYI-They sell it out front of Lowes, not inside the Lowes. I ordered it on a Thursday afternoon and it was delievered on the following Monday. They set it up and it comes with a telescope, steering wheel and warranty
Our’s is back yard adventures and we love it. Great overview!!
We got our swing set from Backyard Adventures. It’s a 3 piece swing set (2 swings & a trapeze) with a ladder and slide attached to the side of it (no playhouse). We didn’t get the Cedar, we got the cheaper (but still really strong) wood – can’t remember what kind it is. It cost us $1,100, which included delivery & installation… so you don’t necessarily have to spend $3,000 on a swing set if you go there. We LOVE our swing set – and it looks like it will last forever.
Cedar Works has fabulous swing sets as well. They are out of Maine. THe send you a seedling to plant as well to help regenerate the trees that are cut down when making swing sets. Pretty cool and enviromentally thing to do!
We have the Sunray (Rainbow) that Costco sells and is is excellent. We paid $1200 for it. My husband and neighbor put it together themselves. It was also disassembled in 4 large pieces and put in a moving van when we relocated to Charlotte and put back together very easily. I would higly recommend it!
we also have the Costco set, has held up great for 3 years, easy to put together and much less expensive
Thanks for your information. Swing set is the best toy for kid in the backyard. However play set could be large investment for a family with price tagged $3000.
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I got three kids and I’m planning on getting them something nice to use or to play to. We got a pretty big or wide backyard I was thinking of putting something on it also to add accent on it. So I’ve read about the backyard adventures, a backyard treehouse is a nice idea and I know kids will love it. Great, thanks!
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