DURANT – The activity on First Avenue in Durant has been steady this summer. Businesses are opening and renovating.
The newest business opening its doors this week is one that is ready to serve local children.
The Kids’ Playspace is located at 402 N. First Ave., Suite A, and had its first official day today.
Ashley McCain, owner and operator, spoke about an environment designed to be one that is safe for kids.
“We are an indoor facility that tailors towards ages 0-12,” McCain said “We allow a safe environment for kids to come and explore and imagine and create. We have a city-like structure feel that mimics a lot of the Durant businesses here, and want to draw in other Durant businesses to sponsor who they are, to bring a community approach to things.
“But, we really just want to promote an awareness for people to come and to have intentional conversations and intentional play with their children or if they’re the caregiver, however that looks. We just want to promote imaginative and creativity, getting back to one-on-one intentionality with kids.”
McCain said the idea and eventual manifestation of the project has been developing within her for awhile.
“When I became a mom, I lived in the Dallas area and there were a lot of things (like this) at our fingertips. When we moved here, the Lord called us here in 2016 to pastor a local church. I realized there was a need. And besides the public library events, which were phenomenal, and the District, there wasn’t really anything that was indoor for moms or caregivers or husbands to come and to play with their kids without the Oklahoma heat.
“So, as I started praying and brainstorming about this idea. Little by little, I would talk to my friends or family about my thoughts and the Lord started to unveil something that I thought, ‘Well, I think we can do this,’ and so, it took the platform of real estate to financially build to this point and God has gifted me within the means of that. About six years into real estate, we bought a building.
“We wanted to make this something where I can reblock community awareness to other businesses that they could also display what they do in the community. A caregiver could read it and be like, ‘Oh, I didn’t know that.’ But also to promote an opportunity for people to come and whether they have gospel-centered conversations, or they have homeschool group conversations, or reality, getting on their hands and knees with the kids – we wanted to create that atmosphere safely for people.”
“When you come in here, you don’t have to worry about choking, or anything breaking, or anything of that nature, and our staff are trained to be able to reset things so you don’t have to clean up anything.”
It is an idea built over the course of the past eight years and now put into motion with the purchase of the building on N. First Ave, which also now houses Empire Jiu Jitsu.
“We partnered with them collaboratively to buy the building together and split it halfway through the middle, so we really have you at heart and children at heart to be able to bring opportunity for our community, indoor opportunity.
The business also has a merchandise area, for those who may need a quick birthday gift or celebratory gift.
“We charge $10.50 per child at the door, and we offer discount programs available to you, as well as membership packages. Those can also be found on our website. We have birthday party packages, and a private event room that can be rented for bible study groups or homeschool groups, private business meetings, and so forth. That pricing can also be found on our website, and the who building can also be rented to larger field trips and so forth, but all of this can be found on the website.
“And this week you can have free popsicles, too, whenever you come and play with us! All weekend—except Sundays, we’re open through Saturday.”
The Kids’ Playspace is open Monday- Saturday from 10 a.m.-6:30 p.m.