All Blog Posts (204)

Treehouse TV

At long last there is a reality TV show that I want to watch, Treehouse Masters on Animal Planet (Premiere - Friday, May 31 at 10PM EST).  It is about Washington state-based Pete Nelson and his team of treehouse builders. There was an article in the New…


Added by Cynthia Gentry on May 30, 2013 at 10:37pm — No Comments

Happy Mothers' Day

Happy Mothers' Day to all the Moms out there who take their children to the playground after school or after work, even when they'd give anything to just go home and relax for a while.

Happy Mothers' Day to all those Moms who don't get upset when they find the dining room chairs upside down and covered…


Added by Cynthia Gentry on May 12, 2013 at 1:22pm — No Comments

ATOP's Woodruff Park Playground Named #1

By Cynthia Gentry, Founder & Executive Director, Atlanta Taskforce on Play (ATOP)

Atlanta, GA  April 5, 2013

We are so proud that in their April 2013 edition Atlanta Magazine named ATOP's Woodruff Park Playground the #1 thing that every Atlantan (and hopefully visitors, too) must…


Added by Cynthia Gentry on April 5, 2013 at 10:30pm — 1 Comment

ATOP Updates

A few notes:

1.) has been under attack by spammers. They are trying to gain access to website  members so they can email current members. If you have received spam from anyone that is a member of please let me know ASAP. For now, we are doing the best we can to catch them before they bother you.

2.) Spring is here, but you wouldn't know it from walking out the door. The cherry tree blossoms in our front yard tell me that warmer weather…


Added by Cynthia Gentry on March 27, 2013 at 6:52am — No Comments

Come to the Always Inspiring Park Pride Annual Conference

Sign up today for the annual Park Pride Conference. It is always fascinating and inspiring, and this year deals with the effect of play on a healthy community. Also, Park Pride awarded an ATOP project, Play Chastain, with the first-ever Legacy Award of $100,000 for the amazing treehouse soon to be installed in the park. Thank you Park Pride. See you at the…


Added by Cynthia Gentry on March 12, 2013 at 3:31pm — No Comments

"Dear Mr. President, We Need a New Playground!"

Photo: Brant Sanderlin (

Chastain Park resident, 10-year-old Leland Jones, wrote the President of the United States of America asking for new playground equipment for Chastain Park. According to…


Added by Cynthia Gentry on February 20, 2013 at 1:48pm — No Comments


International Play…


Added by Cynthia Gentry on February 1, 2013 at 10:30pm — No Comments

"Summer's Treehouse" To Be Built in Memory of Chastain Park Teen


"Summer's Treehouse" will be built in Play Chastain in memory of 16-year-old Chastain Park neighbor Summer Dale who died from cancer on November 11, 2012. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution today has an…


Added by Cynthia Gentry on December 17, 2012 at 1:30pm — No Comments

The Wall Street Journal Cites Play Chastain's Innovation

Innovations in play have gone mainstream!

The Tuesday, November 20, 2012 edition of The Wall Street Journal highlights Atlanta's ambitious new Play Chastain project as a leading example of the…


Added by Cynthia Gentry on November 20, 2012 at 12:53am — No Comments

Kids Playing With Fire...A Good Thing??

Back by popular demand. (Originally posted August 2009)

The other night, during a neighborhood yard party, the kids started a fire and I was pretty happy about it. Really!

Fire is a dangerous and potentially fatal force, but it is undeniably mesmerizing to kids. They all seem to play with matches at one time or another, and that easily strikes fear in the heart of every parent. So, I was shocked to read a while ago that fire was an…


Added by Cynthia Gentry on October 10, 2012 at 9:30am — No Comments

Does a Child Have the Right to Play?

A cloud of the most frequently used words in the Convention on the Rights of the Child


In 1989/90, the…


Added by Cynthia Gentry on September 15, 2012 at 10:30am — No Comments

What Do You Mean "Go Play In the Street"?

In early August, Play Scotland shut down a major street in city of Edinburgh, Scotland  so that children would have a place to play. In spite of a little rain, there was a great turn out and great fun to be had with the simplest of things like sand…


Added by Cynthia Gentry on September 11, 2012 at 6:30am — No Comments

A Playground Rises in the Heart of Downtown Atlanta

Bank of America volunteers ready theWoodruff Park playground for the big day.


On Tuesday, July 17, 2012, Atlanta's Mayor Kasim Reed will unveil a playground in the most surprising of places - downtown…


Added by Cynthia Gentry on July 14, 2012 at 10:00pm — No Comments

Something To Consider

"A city that has no room for the child is a diabolical thing."

 Aldo van Eyck

Look around the City of Atlanta.  Are we making room for our children? Are we thinking of children when we design shiny, hip and splashy mixed-use…


Added by Cynthia Gentry on July 12, 2012 at 8:30pm — 1 Comment

Playable Design Competition Winner is Being Installed At Last!

At long last, our Playable10 International Design Competition winner is arriving at its new home! Installation of the winning design begins Saturday morning (June 23, 2012) in downtown Atlanta's Woodruff Park. The play structure will be unveiled…


Added by Cynthia Gentry on June 23, 2012 at 8:30am — No Comments

Exploring the Path to a New Playground

Added by Cynthia Gentry on June 1, 2012 at 9:16pm — No Comments

What Do People Want/Need to Know About Play?

On June 6th-8th we're putting on an exhibit about play, natural play, and the Chastain Park playground project. It will be at the Chastain Arts Center's City Gallery from 9am - 5pm each day, and on Thursday evening (6/7/12) from 6PM until…


Added by Cynthia Gentry on May 26, 2012 at 7:30am — No Comments

Cardboard Box + Kid + Scissors = WOW!

Even if you've already seen this, it is worth watching again.

Added by Cynthia Gentry on May 23, 2012 at 11:40am — No Comments

This Guy Gets It!

“Play will be to the 21st century what work was to the industrial age—our dominant way of knowing, doing and creating value.”   - Cultural commentator Pat Kane

(from the Museum of Modern Art press release on the upcoming exhibit the Century of the Child)

Added by Cynthia Gentry on May 21, 2012 at 9:47pm — No Comments

Big City + Play + Nature = HiPlay

I am obsessed with what I am calling "HiPlay" (for lack of a better name). HiPlay could be the answer to overgrown cities with no place to play. The idea comes from the new "agro-housing" or "sustainable housing" trend in the world of architecture. This picture is the winning design in…


Added by Cynthia Gentry on April 29, 2012 at 9:29am — No Comments

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Playworks 2010-2011 PLAYBOOK

Pretty much everything you ever needed to know about play.

And, of course, KaBOOM! Find a playground, plan a Play Day, how to build a playground, and much, much more.

Playgroundology, an emerging social science. 


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Ethan E., our first donor


Ethan's grandmother gave him a gift of $25. He gave $20 to ATOP so more Atlanta kids will have great places to play. He kept $5 to get something cool for himself. We think Ethan is pretty cool!

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