Art and Craft Spotlight: Sand Art

One of our favorite things to do here at Imagine Play is Sand Art! It’s a great activity to do with the kids because it keeps them engaged for quite a while and it’s awesome for all ages from toddlers to school age kids.

The best way to describe is it’s like painting with sand. At Imagine Play we have done summer, school, space, and sea themes, but you can get all types of scenes that matches any theme. Sand art comes in these sticker sheets and the kids peel off the top layer to expose the sticky surface and they pour their desired color sand over it. Spreading it around with their fingers helps cover the surface.

Kids love pouring the sand and shaking it off and the older kids create beautiful artwork with their scenes. The best part of this activity is there is no right and wrong way to paint. It can be as colorful as they want.

summer camp

Sand Art can get messy quickly, so if you have younger ones it is best for it to be a supervised activity. We put the scenes on a tray so there is less sand spillage.

Sand Art

Each sand art package comes with a small package of sand, but we like to put our sand in bottles so the kids have an easier time pouring out the sand.

Sometimes we do sand art during open play. Come join us during open play hours, or if you want to try it at home. The best place to buy sand art is from oriental trading as they have the best selection of scenes, but we have also linked some below.

Our Shopping Area has Improved!

Our sad shopping area got a much needed upgrade this week. We got rid of the bulky wire shelving for a more clean look and received a whole new inventory of cute products to buy for your little one!

Imagine Play Shopping Area

Of course, the essentials of all toys included some of our favorite Melissa and Doug items such as our best seller Dust, Sweep and Mop set, but the kid’s favorite Ice Cream Cone set.

Shopping Area

Since opening we’ve only offer Melissa and Doug toys and while we love them, this upcoming year we wanted to offer a different variety of items as well. As you know, Imagine Play is very well known for our fun special events. We thought it would be complimentary if every month we offered some boutique items that corresponded with the season or our special events.

This month is obviously the time to get ready for trick or treating, so we found some stylish costumes that your kids would love. What we adore most about these costumes is that they are soft enough for every day wear too.

Shopping Area

The Anna costume with the cape is our favorite, but many moms are loving the other styles too!

princess dresses Princess Dresses

For boys we have the cutest Captain America costume. It’s like a little jogger and it’s super comfy! This is being modeled by one of favorite members. It’s great for the really little ones because it feels just like their every day clothes and with winter coming, it will keep them warm for their Halloween outings too.

Shopping Area Captain America

In the upcoming months we are anxious for our Unicorn party and preparing for that we have a few unicorn items coming in. We plan to get more variety in when it gets closer to the Unicorn party. However,  you can get a sneak peek in store now with these unicorn dresses!

unicorn dress shopping area imagine play

They have already become a magical item! We hope to continue to provide more unique items in the months to come. Come pick up some of these items by stopping in for Open Play.

What are our weekend hours?

Just a quick blog about our weekend hours to help clarify some confusion. You’ll notice on some sites like yelp and google our weekend hours will differ than what’s on calendar on our website.

EVERY WEEKEND, you can expect that we are open between 9:30am to 12:00pm. We close at 12:00pm to accommodate private birthday party bookings. HOWEVER, there are some days when we may open later if there are no parties booked. Unfortunately, many of the sites that is not our own doesn’t allow a “variable hours” button, so you’ll see sites like yelp or google list our hours from 9:30am to 12:00pm. The most accurate and up to date weekend hours are listed on the calendar on our website. You can see the calendar under the open play tab or below.

We are in fact open 7 days a weeks, with the exception of some holidays or some special maintenance days. Those will be notated accurately or all sites.

Hope that clears things up a bit. See you for OPEN PLAY soon.

Camping Pretend Play

This month’s rotating theme in our play area  is Camping pretend play. It’s our first theme that we are recycling as we approach our 1 year anniversary. We re-used our camping tent, but have a bunch of new accessories for our camping theme too. We included a woodsy backdrop to complete the camping atmosphere.

camping pretend play

You can’t go camping without looking the part. The kids can dress up in a adventure vest and hat. Don’t forget the binoculars for some bird watching.

camping pretend play

Listen and learn about the sound of animals in the wilderness with our animal caller.

camping pretend play

After sit around the camp fire and roast some marshmallows with your friends.

camping pretend play

When they are tired they can gaze upon the stars in their tent.

camping pretend play

Come join us for camping pretend play soon.

camping pretend play

You can buy all the items from this theme here:

Superhero Donut Party

We celebrated Labor Day at Imagine Play with an epic superhero donut party with a visit from Batman. We welcomed our superheroes into a colorful party room, where they enjoyed donuts of every variety and other breakfast items.

superhero donut party

We love these stand with superhero graphics. They were the perfect vessel to hold our fluffy treats.

We decided to keep the colors in the classic yellow, blue and red superhero scheme. The vibrant colors made this party room festive.

superhero donut party

Each child place setting included a crime fighting plate and cup. We alternated between graphic plates and Batman.

superhero donut party

Some of our favorite details are the superhero backdrops. We had a total of three balloon arches for this party. We love how the arches bring life to any room.

After breakfast, Batman taught the kids about how to spot a bad guy and what it takes to be a superhero. Our favorite moment during the Batman party today was when Batman was like “do you know how to spot a bad guy?” Pause. “They are always robbing banks.” 😂Batman is a funny guy!

batman donut party

We also did some superhero training. The kids exercised to learn to be fast and strong and practiced some superhero moves.

superhero donut party

We can’t wait to hold our next superhero party. Join us for future special events. Register on our our store.

What age range do we cater to?

Per the information on our open play area of our website our play area is most ideal for children one to seven years old. Please note the key word here is MOST IDEAL. There are children that may be older or even younger that would enjoy Imagine Play just as much!

Our age demographic has a lot to do with our size, as we are what you consider COZY, but mostly because our play structures are meant for the learning minds of younger children. We designed our playground with these curial growing periods in mind. Such as having an open play concept so you can keep an eye on your little one or having a dramatic play concept to help your little one learn not only life skills, but fine motor skills. These are all strategic decisions we’ve made to encourage the nurturing of your children through play.

Does this mean a child who is 8,9,10 or even 11  won’t enjoy coming to our playground? Absolutely not! What they love the most is our hourly activities which include sensory play and arts and crafts. Also, if you see a special event that you know your older child may love, by all means, buy a ticket! Our age demographic is definitely merely a suggestion. We know every child is different and leave it up to the parent to determine what their child interests are.

Does your child love to play pretend? Do they like to dress up as a princess or say “aargh” like a pirate? Do they like to play kitchen or doctor? Do they like modeling things in sand or watching rice fall through a waterfall? Do they like arts and crafts? If you say yes to some of things then chances are they will like Imagine Play.

Why do we have a suggested age range any way? It’s important to us to set expectations. Setting an ideal age range keeps our customer more informed of what kind of playground they will be attending, Most importantly less customer are disappointed. It is always our goal to being as informative and kind to our customers as possible.

See you in for open play soon!

open play age range

Kakamora Moana Birthday Inspiration

We love Moana here and we definitely get our fill of parties revolved around the Hawaiian princess. We wanted to share this fun Moana birthday decor because of the Kakamora inspiration. We can’t get enough of what the birthday mom did with these crazy coconuts.

Kakamora Moana Birthday

We also thought it was really clever to spice up the table with the fish netting! The kakamora cups are perfect for this theme. Best of all, you can do it yourself. We found a blog that can help: Kakamora Party Cups Tutorial.

kakamora moana birthday

The tables were so festive with all the palm leaves and leis. How cute is the giant kakamora pinata?

kakamora moana birthday

Lastly, we wanted to highlight this banner inspired the movie’s goddess. We love the paper flowers!

kakamora moana birthday

Check out our party packages and if your child loves Moana as much as we do, come to one of our Luau’s featuring the Hawaiian princess.

Royal Tea Party

We had a blast at our Royal Tea Party with Belle and Moana. If you have come to our Moana event, you know how awesome she is. This is our visit from Belle and WOW she was amazing!

Royal Tea Party

As always the tea party decorations turned out so cute! Without a doubt, one of our favorite party themes to put together.

Royal Tea Party

We’re also a little bit obsessed with the balloon arch, epic background combo! Major heart emojis and the balloon arch can be made to match many different themes, which we love!

Royal Tea Party

Royal Tea Party

Just like our last princess party we served sandwiches and all of the kiddos favorite snacks such as puffs, cheese crackers and berries.

Royal Tea Party

Moana and Belle greeted all the kids as they enjoyed their tea.

Royal Tea Party

The princesses took lots of pictures with their little princesses.

Royal Tea Party

After tea time, all the little princesses enjoyed story time, a sing-a-long and they learned two princesses dances. We love watching the kids do the hula and royal dance!

Royal Tea Party

Watch the video from this tea party here.

To see more detailed images of our tea party set up check out the blog from our last princess party.

When is the best time to come play?

Since all parents and children are unique, we understand the answer to this question is several different answers as parents are all looking for different things when it comes to playtime. This post will outline our best times to come for socialization or when to visit for a more calm experience.

Busy time vs Slow Times

Mornings – Mornings from Opening til about 1:00pm is generally our busier time of the day.  There is definitely a chance when you come at this time that every table is filled, but it is a great for kids to socialize.

Afternoon – Our quietest time of the day is form 1:00pm – 3:00pm. If your child wants the place peaceful this is perfect for them. After 3:00pm we may get a little rush again, however, not as filled as our morning hours.

Busy Days vs Slow Days

Monday and Tuesday are generally our slower days of the week.

Thursday and Friday are our busiest days of the week.

Weekday vs. Weekend

The biggest difference between a weekday and weekend is the hourly activities. During the week every hour we run a sensory, art and craft or game. We do not run these activities on the weekend to prepare for upcoming birthday parties. REMINDER: make sure you check out hours during the weekend, we can be open later than you expect.

Littles Vs Bigs

While our play space is designed for children between 1 to 7 years old, in the morning you’ll see more children within the age range of 1 to 3 years olds. In the afternoon we do get a variety of ages, but you can expect a few more older children.

Hot vs Cold Weather

Both are equal, as we do experience the rainy season and the extreme hot season where we are located, but you can expect that cold weather means for more full mornings and hot weather can, but not always, have crowded afternoons. Months that have seemed the slowest for us are May, June, August and September. Our birthday party season is the most prominent during the colder months as well.

Imagine Play Elk Grove When is the best time to visit

The most appropriate time to play is up to you. Hopefully this post gave you an idea of when to come to fit your family needs.

Unicorn Birthday Party

Since the unicorn has become every little girl’s (and some adults) spirit animal, we were more than excited to get to decorate this unicorn birthday party. The best things about a unicorn party is all the flowers, pretty colors, and sparkles. We just love the creative things you can do with this magical theme.

Unicorn Birthday Party

For this party we started with two different unicorn table coverings. Surprisingly, they aren’t super hard to find with how popular this theme is. We like the contrast between the main table and the food table and how the two tables tied all together with the interchanging of plates and unicorn decor.

Unicorn Birthday Party

The two walls got adorn with giant unicorn themed backdrops. We included a happy birthday sign and some unicorn flags on one wall. Also, notice the photo backdrop in the corner with picture frames for the perfect selfie.  The other side was left simple, but we attached one of our favorite design elements.

unicorn birthday party

This balloon arch took some love and attention, but it made this unicorn party even more special. What we love about a balloon arch is that you can theme it to any party, such as the one from our art theme party. The table scape included several unicorn pinatas.

Unicorn Birthday Party

and some DIY unicorn table centerpieces made from a cone, glitter paper and tissue.

The parent’s from the party brought in this three tier unicorn cake. It was nothing, but magical.

unicorn birthday party

The food was yummy too, which includes some mozzarella/tomato/basil skewers and unicorn themed puffs. This party also enjoyed a wand decorating art project and a visit from a snow princess. Definitely a unicorn party to remember.

Some other fun elements from other unicorn birthday parties we have had at our facility is these center pieces glued onto ceramic stands and unicorn mask for your unicorn friends.

unicorn birthday party

One of our other favorite cakes made by The Mix Baking Co. This cake was accompanied by some adorable cake pops as well (not pictured).

unicorn birthday party

Plan your next unicorn birthday party with us by visiting our party page.