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Beat the Heat at Philly’s Spraygrounds

Need a splash, but don't want to swim? Hit one of these cooling spots around the city -- no bathing suit required.

The sprayground is the water experience for everyone: Even if your kids can’t swim, they all love getting wet.

 

Philly is packed with playgrounds that feature a water area. Some are elaborate, some are basically a glorified sprinkler. But when the temperature is above 85, anything that sprays water is a welcome oasis, right?

 

Here’s a list of where to go, wherever you live. Many of the smaller spraygrounds and sprinklers are open only during the week, when Parks and Recreation employees are around to turn the water on and off. The hours listed here are subject to change, and it’s always best when dealing with city rec facilities to call ahead and double-check that everything is working. The city says all of the spraygrounds will be open by July 1.

 

Public pools will open on a rolling basis starting June 22; click here to see the schedule.

Destination spraygrounds

Dilworth Park

1 S. 15th St. (west side of City Hall)

10 am — 8 pm daily

 

This super-popular spot features programmable 3-feet-high spouts. Plus, there’s a the Dilworth Park Cafe and the Air Grille (and a Capogiro gelato cart, too!).

Sister Cities Park

18th Street and the Benjamin Franklin Parkway

10 am — 8 pm daily

 

The fountain area here is smaller than at Dilworth, but kids really love the boat pond, which hosts many more splashing children than toy boats.

Herron Playground

2nd and Reed Streets

11 am — 7 pm weekdays; noon — 5 pm weekends

 

This Pennsport favorite has a terrific dry playground, too, and draws families from all over the southern part of the city.

Venice Island Performing Arts and Recreation Center

7 Lock St.

8 am — 8 pm daily

 

One of the city’s newest water features, this “spray garden” in Manayunk also waters the park’s greenery.

Neighborhood gems

Starr Garden Playground

600-44 Lombard St.

9 am — 6 pm weekdays

Mount Airy Playground

7001 Germantown Ave.

11 am — 7 pm weekdays

Columbus Square Playground

1200 Wharton St.

9 am — 6 pm weekdays; 10 am — 3 pm Saturdays

Shepard Recreation Center

5700 Haverford Ave.

1 — 7 pm weekdays; 1 — 5 pm Saturdays; 1 — 4 pm Sundays

Waterview Recreation Center

5826 McMahon St.

10 am — 6:45 weekdays; 10 am — 3 pm Saturday

Shot Tower Recreation Center

101-31 Carpenter St.

10 or 11 am — 8 pm daily; possibly open later on weekends (NOTE: a reader reports that this week, the posted hours are 10 am — noon and 3 — 7 pm.)

Seger Recreation Center

1000-42 Lombard St.

9:30 am — 8 pm weekdays; weekend hours vary

Parkside Evans Playground

5300 Parkside Ave.

Noon — 6 pm daily

Athletic Recreation Center

1401-55 N. 26th St.

11 am — 7 pm weekdays; noon — 5 pm weekends (if the adjacent pool is open, the sprayground is open)

Ferko Playground

1101 E. Cayuga St.

Noon — 4 pm Monday and Friday; Noon — 6 pm Tuesday-Thursday; 10:30 am — 4:30 pm weekends

Mitchell Playground

3700 Whitehall Lane

9 am — 6 pm weekdays

Junod Playground

12770 Dunksferry Road

Noon — 7 pm weekdays; noon — 5 pm weekends

Chalfont Playground

4330-40 Deerpath Lane

10 am — 7 pm daily

Self-service sprayers

These sprinklers must be turned on by visitors, and turn themselves off when nobody’s using them. Don’t be fooled if you walk up and they’re not running — try the button!

Shissler Recreation Center

1800-56 Blair St.

Water is available from 9 am — 9 pm

Picariello Playground

10801 Calera Rd.

Water is available from 10 am — 8 pm

Other locations

We couldn’t get operating times and days out of these spots, but stop by and check them out.

Awbury Playground

6101 Ardleigh St.

Pleasant Playground

6720 Boyer St.

Water View Playground

5826 McMahon St.

Sturgis Playground

200-20 W. 65th Ave.

Clemente Playground

1800 Wallace St.

Piccoli Playground

1501 E. Bristol St.

Comegys/48th and Woodland Playground

4740 Woodland Ave.

Stokely Playground

3000 Edgemont St.

Mitchell Playground

3700 Whitehall Lane

Glavin Recreation Center

3267-81 Almond St.

Houston Playground

900 Grakyn Lane

Neighbors Park

3901 Terrace St.

 

Looking for a place to cool off in the suburbs? Click here for our Main Line list.

 

Photograph by M. Fischetti for Visit Philadelphia.