Pine Hill Lakes Park
211 Kings Mills Rd, Mason, OH 45040
While this park isn’t new – (you can see my review for the old playground here if you want to compare to the new and improved version) – the playground equipment is 100% brand new and ready for exploration having just opened Summer of 2021.
Let’s start with the most important information first – THIS PLAYGROUND IS 100% FENCED IN AND GATED. While this is a welcome feature at any playground – it is much needed at this park as the playground borders a pond.
The splash area has been removed.
This playground is a climber’s paradise. It was built for the kid who just can’t stay off the bookshelves. There are plenty of netted climbing features to reach the top of the playground as well as a completely stand alone dome climbing feature with rope ladders, bridges, and a climbing wall. It is definitely one of the most unique climbing features I have seen at a playground. There is even a net climbing wall to climb across to access a second portion of the playset. This playground is perfect for any kid who is aspiring to be a contestant on American Ninja Warrior. Plenty of slides to go around as well as steps to access the structure for those not quite up to scaling a rope wall.
Toddler Play Structure
Smaller structure is next to the big kid playground. There is little separation between the two playgrounds but the toddler structure is very small and therefore unappealing to the bigger kids. Toddlers should have a blast with it without worrying about being plowed over by larger kids.
This playground has a lot of unique features. There is a four person see-saw that was quite popular with all the kids. There are also several spinning elements – some of which can get quite a spin going so I highly recommend a conversation with your kids about using their “big kid voice” to express their need to stop if the other kids are going and going.
One of the spinning features is fully enclosed like a small, adorable house and it is wheelchair accessible with one corner being free of a bench.
If you have children’s books to unload – think about donating them to the little library at this park. It always brings a smile to my face when I see one of these cute little bins full of books to share.
There is a lot of seating at this park both within the gated area and just outside of it. Within the gate there are several benches, many of which are under trees for some shade and nature immersion. There is a large gazebo with plenty of picnic tables and a stand alone shaded picnic table as well.
Just outside of the fence is a large shaded paved area with plenty of benches. I personally found it to be a bit awkward and I’m not sure how often anyone will sit there – picnic tables would have been a better used of this space in my opinion.
While this park does feature a few wheelchair accessible options – overall it is not an accessible park. If you’re looking for a great alternative with a wheel chair accessible play structure – then Beckett Park is a much better option for you.
Two baby swings and two big kids…no accessible swings.
Parking and Safety
There is no shortage of parking at this park.
Now that the fence has been added, I would consider this to be a very safe park. I did not feel the need to have my eyes on my children at all times for fear of serious bodily harm. That being said – if you have an adventurous climber who hasn’t quite mastered the skill – this park might be more stressful for you.
The ground is a combination of turf and natural grass. It is soft. No mulch or mud.
You must exit the fenced area for the bathroom, but they are very close with less than a 30 second walk. There is a changing table in the accessible stall of the women’s restroom. Sinks were low enough for my average height 3 year old to reach which is a nice bonus.
This is a really nicely done playground. The fencing is definitely an improvement over the previous playground and there is just something special about a playground that is surrounded by real nature with beautiful trees and a pond vs. a pseudo-urban playground (I’m looking at you Summit Park…)
If you’re a fan of Makino Park, but not a big fan of the crowds there, this park is a great alternative for you. While it’s not as colorful as Makino, it has a lot of nice features that make it a great choice for a day of play.