A couple of weeks ago, we braved the sun and the long-lines to spend the day at PNE / Playland. I was really on the fence about it this year. I took Aiden last year on his own and he had a great time… until he had a migraine. This year, I was on the fence about whether to go during the week or weekend, to go during PNE or not, or to take just Aiden or both kids. I knew Damien would enjoy it, but he’s too short for all the rides and he still naps, so that’s more complicated. In the end, we took both boys during the PNE craziness.
We arrived right at the Playland entrance at 11am when the gates opened, which is my first tip for any family going to the PNE. Kids always want to go on the rides, but if you start at the PNE end, it will be way too busy at the rides when you get there. This way, we were able to spend more than an hour going on the rides without line-ups, so that was incredibly helpful. Sadly, Damien was too short for some of the rides that a parent couldn’t go on, which was silly since they were such simple rides. He loved the rides, especially the fast ones like the tea cups and the carousel.
Aiden was much less nervous on the rides this year, and is really gaining confidence with things that are “fast” or wobbly. It’s great to see him enjoy the rides now. Next year, we plan to start with the kids roller coaster, since that line-up gets really long quite quickly. I think having a plan of which rides you want to go on first is a great way to make sure you aren’t stuck in line-ups all day.
I’m actually considering skipping the PNE altogether next year and just doing Playland. My kids have little interest in the shows at the PNE and, though the barn activities are fun, we can just go to Maplewood Farm. The only downside is that during the PNE, more kid-sized rides are brought into the Playland area, so we would miss out on some rides.
So, was Playland fun with 2 kids under age 5? YES! We had a great day! Damien walked so much and rarely complained, which is amazing. I tried to give him a nap in the Ergo, which I had in my backpack, but it was so hot that he only slept 5-10 minutes in it. He still did great for the rest of the day, even without a proper nap, but he definitely wasn’t old enough to simply skip it altogether.