Escape to somewhere over the rainbow by visiting Watkins Regional Park in Upper Marlboro, Maryland. It’s like walking into a storybook as Baum’s “The Wizard of Oz” comes alive before your eyes. Start your adventure and follow the yellow brick road to the 12,000 square foot Wizard of Oz themed playground. Walk under a giant rainbow that reflects bright and vibrant colors at your feet. Cross over the bridge and the magic unfolds as you are greeted by the scarecrow and other characters.

As you enter the main park, step to the right and you will find yourself down on Auntie Em’s farm with tractor, barn, windmill and Dorothy’s house. No detail is left out, even a quaint picture is hung in the house reading “there’s no place like home.” Walk through a field of bright and colorful poppies and hide in little whimsical dome shaped munchkin huts. Escape the flying monkeys in the forest that is a giant obstacle course. Explore the Emerald City’s castle, where your kids can climb rock walls, ropes and ladders. Pretend to fly away in the hot air balloon section. Activities in this area include a word search and hour glass spin dial. Each section has fun little activity centers to stimulate visual, sensory and auditory awareness.

At the back of the play ground is a fun musical zone where you can play giant xylophones. Don’t forget to relax and enjoy a old fashioned swing; which of course has a scene on the ground that looks like the sky. Another awesome detail I love about this park are the excerpts from the book on illustrated pages through different sections. Last but not least, with the ruby slipper slides located on the way out of the park you will be clicking your feet together and saying “There’s no place like Watkins Regional Park!”


Address: 301 Watkins Park Dr, Upper Marlboro, MD 20774

Cost: FREE