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Did you know that you can take your kids to an indoor beach during the cold weather in Seattle? I discovered Sandbox Sports in Georgetown last year through ParentMap magazine. They always seem to know what’s cool to keep kids occupied. I went with a few friends and we all brought our 2-year-olds. They had a blast just playing with trucks in the same spot in the sand!

So this year, when we were invited to a playdate there, I quickly said yes. We decided to do the 9:30 a.m.-11:00 a.m. session so we could grab lunch after. They also have an 11:30 a.m.-1:00 p.m. session that I have heard is less crowded.

Lil Diggers Playtime at Sandbox Sports in Seattle

We got there early and my son had his pick of toys!

I remembered that parking was tough last year. I was newly pregnant and I had to park in an industrial area and walk with my toddler in the rain while avoiding huge trucks and puddles. So this year, I arrived 30 minutes early to nab a spot in their lot. That may seem crazy, but it made it so much easier with a baby and a 3-year-old in the chilly rain.

Since we had been before, we didn’t need to sign the waiver. I paid the $8 and we took off our shoes and headed into the sand pit. We kept our socks on because it was cold and I thought last year that my feet were freezing by the end of the session. While I remembered that the sand was cold, it took me awhile before I realized it was also WET. The socks didn’t really keep our feet much warmer and they ended up trapping in sand so our feet were cold. wet and sandy. Next  time we will just do bare feet.


Because we arrived right at 9:30 a.m., my son had his pick of toys. He ran around and grabbed a truck. Then, he went down all the slides right as other kids started to trickle in. Our friends arrived and the place started to get really busy. We stayed in the sand pit the whole time, but I saw a lot of parents sitting in the chairs outside. I wore my 4.5 month-old in my Tula baby carrier. I saw one family put their baby in the carseat on the sand, but I would have worried about sand getting into a baby’s face.

The coolest thing about Sandbox Sports is that it’s probably one of the few “beach” experiences where your kids can roam around in a pretty safe environment. No need to worry about them running into the ocean or walking down the beach and out of sight. It’s really easy to keep your eye on your kid(s) the whole time.

Changing table at Sandbox Sports

The changing table area at Sandbox Sports.
My son had to use the bathroom, so we quickly headed into the Women’s restroom. They have a handicapped stall that was the right size for all 3 of us. They also had a step stool at the sink. What impressed me the most was their changing table. It was located in the alcove outside of the restrooms and not only had a trash can, but extra bags to bag up stinky diapers. I thought the whole set-up was great!


8 Things to Know Before You Go:

  1. Kids ages 0-5 are welcome, as long as they are potty trained or wear diapers/pull-ups. If your kiddo has an accident. alert the staff ASAP.
  2. Lil Diggers Playtime is offered Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays now thru June 1, 2017.
  3. Parking can be tricky. They have a limited number of spots in their parking lot and street parking is hit/miss.
  4. Shoes are not allowed on the sand for either kids or adults. There is plenty of space to leave diaper bags, shoes, etc.
  5. The sand is really cold and damp. If you choose to wear socks, bring an extra pair to change into (and wipes to get the sand off your feet.)
  6. Leave your sand toys at home. There are plenty of fun toys for everyone to play with and you won’t want to keep track of your toys or have staff inspect them.
  7. Holidays get crowded. We went on President’s Day both last year and this year and it’s been packed for the 9:30 a.m. session. I’ve heard it’s much less crowded on other days.
  8. Snacks are okay off the sand. Don’t bring food into the sand pit.



Marcie writes the family travel blog Marcie in Mommyland. When she's not traveling the world, she's home in Seattle with her husband and two little boys.

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