BlogExplosion

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

The End of an Era: Time In Interactive Playground in Randolph, New Jersey Closes Its Doors

Since London and Maddie had two friends' birthday parties to attend this past weekend, kids' birthday party venues have been on my mind. I shared a list of our family's faves over on my statewide Roxy's Best Of... New Jersey site, and have since learned via Roxy's e-mailbag that one of our family's favorite pre-school birthday party venues, Time In in Randolph, NJ, is out of business.

Ah, nostalgia. Our family spent a lot of time in Time In during London and Maddie's toddler and pre-school years, when climbing for an hour in a safe, padded environment followed by pizza, hot dogs, and birthday cake, was just their speed, and the Roxiticus Desperate Housewives could catch up on the latest gossip while our kids played together. When we went back to Time In last June for a 7-year-old girl's "late-over" birthday party on a Saturday night, however, it was clear that our girls, as well as everyone at the party, had outgrown Time In. Free Willy on the enormous HDTV couldn't save the day, and our family couldn't get out of there fast enough.

Even though my little girls are growing up, I've become conscious that there are plenty of Morris County, NJ parents who need toddler and pre-school activities, and Time In's impressive play and party center offered a clean, safe, climate controlled environment for young children to play, imagine, create or just have fun. London and Maddie enjoyed Time In for birthday parties, group play dates with their Westmont Montessori classmates, and open play on a rainy afternoon. Particularly in bad weather or the winter months, kids need a place like Time In to burn off energy through jumping, climbing, bouncing and sliding. While I'm assuming the owners of Time In had explored all options before shutting down, I will keep Roxy's Best Of... readers up to date if a new owner takes over the facility.

For those of you with a kid's birthday party already scheduled (and cancelled) at Time In, you may want to consider Randolph Gymnastics, right across the street (Middlebury Boulevard) in Randolph, NJ. Our family first discovered Randolph Gymnastics at a pre-school birthday party there back in the Fall of 2004. Since then, our girls have enjoyed the giant slide, tarzan rope and jumping castle with their friends at countless Randolph Gymnastics birthday parties. More importantly, we were inspired by the amazing “Olympic size” facilities to start gymnastics classes, and this year marks London and Maddie’s fourth year of lessons at Randolph Gymnastics. If you’re interested in hosting your child’s birthday party at Randolph Gymnastics, call (973) 584-4111, ask for Shannon, the manager, and tell ‘em Roxy sent you… you’ll save $50 off the price of a Sunday birthday party. Speaking from experience, I can also say that Sunday, particularly late morning into early afternoon, is the best time for a gymnastics birthday party. It just feels a lot less hectic than weekday evenings or Saturdays, and I’ve enjoyed catching up with the other parents while our kids get their ya-yas out with the exceptional staff of Randolph Gymnastics.

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