We love a good park. Wherever we travel, we always try to find parks that are unique. We look for parks that have something different than the usual boring slides and swings. If you live in Round Rock, you probably already know that you have two of the best parks in the STATE in your hometown. If you don’t live there, you are about to find out!
We discovered these two parks in Round Rock several years ago when we were in Austin for a race at Circuit of the Americas. We were staying at a hotel in north Austin. After a day of racing, we were looking for something cheap and fun for the kids to do. We were browsing our maps app on our phones and found Play For All Abilities Park located at 151 N. AW Grimes Blvd, Round Rock, TX. The second park that looked fun was Joanne Land Playground located at 2003 Harrell Parkway, Round Rock, TX.
These two parks are SO good, that we have actually taken day trips with the focus being visiting these two parks. They both offer features and structures that we have not found at any parks in the Dallas/Fort Worth area. What makes them so special? Read on and see…
Play For All Abilities Park
The original concept for Play For All Abilities Park was to provide the children of Central Texas a park where kids of all levels of ability would be able to play side by side. The community came together to design, fundraise, and advocate for the need for such a park. After five years of hard work, the park opened to the public on March 3, 2012.
The park features several distinct pods for children to play:
- Retreat Pod
- Sensory Pod- Sand Box
- Rock Band Pod
- Rolling Hill/Performance Lawn
- Sensory Pod
- All Abilities Playscape
- All Abilities Swing
- Brushy Creek Village
- Nyle Maxwell Dealerships Speedway
- Nolan Ryan Foundation Train Pod
- Adventure Hill
- Nature Pod featuring the Seton/Ascension Health Treehouse
Does this sound like a lot? Well it should, because it IS a lot. When we visit this park, we will easily spend HOURS here.
So what things do we like the best? Our boys are 4 and 6 years old. They love bringing their bikes and scooters onto the race track. We have been to Circuit of the Americas several times and they love to pretend that they are the same race cars that we see on the actual racetrack. The track has twists and turns and even some elevation changes. Not only is it fun for them, but it is a great workout. We will often run along with them!
We also love the Brushy Creek Village. The village is basically a miniature town that is pint sized for the kids. There’s a bank, police station, post office, grocery store, auto repair shop, a Chick-fil-a, gas station, and a car wash with real water misters (great for the hot Texas summer!) and many more! It is fun to walk around and have imaginary play throughout this tiny village.
The All Abilities Playscape is impressive in both size and variety of play elements. Our boys love to treat the playscapes as a “parkour” or “ninja warrior” and time each other to complete different sections. There are climbing areas, balance blocks, slides, bridges, monkey bars and more.
The Rock Band area has numerous playground grade instruments for kids to make music on. Drums, bells, xylophones, and more. What kid doesn’t like being able to make as much noise as possible? We like playing “Name That Tune” as we play songs on the giant bells.
Our boys have always LOVED the Sand Box Pod. They have mini excavators that they sit on and control the scooper with two levers. There are often buckets around to use, but we always bring our own just in case. The sand is great for building castles and stuff!
When visiting in the Spring and Fall, we enjoy walking the trails. The huge oak trees provide tons of shade. The trail takes you along Brushy Creek. The scenery is nice and even has a bit of color during the Fall months.
Play for All Abilities Park is an amazing park that provides hours of fun, learning, and exercise for children of all ages and all abilities. It is not only one of the best parks in Round Rock but in Texas as a whole.
Joanne Land Playground
Joanne Land Playground is located in the much larger and sprawling Old Settlers Park. While not nearly as large and inclusive as Play for All Abilities Park, it makes up for it with thrill and adventure.
What we love most about the play structures at Joanne Land Playground is the way they get the kids to push their abilities and boundaries, but in a very safe way. Several of the pieces of play equipment are 20+ feet off the ground. They navigate bridges, obstacles, and challenges while working on the kids’ strength and balance. At the end of the two challenging bridges is a thrilling tube slide back to the bottom. There is a multi-level tower with a fast and fun tube slide as the reward for getting to the top.
As a parent, I love how these play structures push kids to be brave, but in a very safe way. Surrounding the bridges that are high off the ground is a durable rubber mesh. The kids are able to see through and see how high up they are, but feel safe to push their comfort zones. We went to this park shortly after our older boy was cleared from breaking his wrist (at a different park from the monkey bars), and he really thrived and built his confidence back up. He was FLYING through the various challenges.
Ian’s favorite thing to do at Joanne Land Playground was riding this super cool zip line type structure. Each end had a raised platform. You would bring the zip line seat up the platform, climb onto the seat, and step off the platform to head to the other side. It is actually pretty fast and has wiggles, curves, bumps and all as you go from end to end. We must have done this 20+ times. Daddy was TIRED. LOL
If you have a “not so adventurous” child, Old Settlers Park has a more traditional playground just down the road to the south. The Virg Rabb Playground has more tame and less heart racing equipment. The parks in Round Rock are truly awesome!
Those of you who live in this area are soooooo lucky to have two absolutely amazing playgrounds in your town!! Play For All Abilities Park would easily rank as one of the best parks in Texas, if not the country! We only know of one park in Texas that even comes close, and that is Dream Park in Fort Worth. Dream Park has similar play structures, but doesn’t have the race track or miniature village. Joanne Land Playground has some of the most thrilling and exciting playground pieces we have seen.
When I say that we have taken the 2.5 hour drive from Midlothian, TX to Round Rock, TX just to go to these parks is not a joke. They truly are worth the drive! Both of these playgrounds are also close to Dell Diamond…you can also catch a Round Rock Express baseball game into the trip! These parks in Round Rock are the BEST!
If you are visiting around the holidays, check out these MUST DO Austin area holiday attractions!
To make that road trip more enjoyable, check out our list of fun Road Trip Games!
There is a brand new LaQuinta right next to Dell Diamond and Old Settlers Park. Check out their always great rates HERE.
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