Playborhood: Turn Your Neighborhood into a Place for Play
Menlo Park, CA: Free Play Press, 2012. Figures, images, notes, index. 238 pages. $9.95 paper. ISBN: 9780984929818
My parents moved a lot. Between my fourth and fourteenth birthdays (mostly in the 1950s), I lived in eight different neighborhoods, in six different cities or villages. Yet, finding friends to play with, and exciting things to play at, never seemed a problem. All I had to do was go outside, and there they were. Kids were everywhere and could go everywhere. Every community had its own kids’ play culture. In one village, we spent huge amounts of time at pick-up baseball, kite building, and, in winter, skating down ice slides that we made on the steep hill behind the school. In another village, we played mostly on the lake. We swam, fished, rowed, skated, and skied on it, all the time exploring it and the life within and around it. Adults almost never joined us in these activities or even knew what we were doing.