Right at home: Sparkling water toys for the terrace, pool, courtyard | News from Illinois
By KIM COOK, Associated Press
Backyards and patios have been hard worked year round due to the pandemic and this summer offers new ways to cool off and have fun in the water.
Whether a lot or little space, from the water table to the tub for children to the floating lounger with cup holder for adults, everything is included.
One company, Minnidip, makes inflatable “kids’ pools for adults” designed to take you to exotic destinations. Patterns on the Marrakech pool refer to Moroccan architectural details, while the Amalfi is a nod to the blue, yellow and white tiles of the Italian coast.
“Because having a pool on our urban roof in Chicago felt like being in a different place for me,” says company founder Emily Vaca. “I wanted to capture that feeling through design and patterns. “
Minnidip also offers inflatable drink coolers and glamorous pool balls filled with gold confetti.
Let’s dive into some other water toys for the garden for the summer:
A Multipurpose Picnic Table from Best Choice Products has a detachable top with a small sandpit and a water tub underneath; four children can sit together and there is also an adjustable umbrella.
Little Tikes’ Island Wavemaker is the only water table you can make waves with. Toddlers can practice their fine motor skills with the Little Tikes Spinning Seas Water Table; small balls, a cup, a funnel, and a water wheel add to the fun.
Step2’s two-sided Waterfall Discovery Wall features adjustable rocker arms, spinners, and slides to make the water tumble in many different ways. And the Watch It Flow water table from Lakeshore Learning has three plastic trunks that can be configured however you want. Fill the trunks with a hose or bucket; Gates control the flow and can close to form long tubs.
Foamo, also by the folks at Little Tikes, creates mountains of easy-to-clean foam when you add the non-toxic, biodegradable foam solution to water.
Turn on the hose and attach it to West Elm’s rainbow or basking shark mouth inflatable sprinklers. The Fat Brain Toy Hydro Twist Pipeline Sprinkler has a couple of fountains as well as a number of wobbly worm hoses. Or join BigMouth’s giant 6 foot tall unicorn shooting water from its horn. There is also a giant monkey, giraffe, dinosaur, and giraffe here.
Find your inner hamster with giant inflatable water wheels. You can find ones for toddlers online, while Wow Watersports has an adult version they call the Aqua Treadmill.
Don’t forget the family’s pets; a non-porous, puncture-proof floating dog bed at Frontgate is available in a range of colors and three sizes.
Chewy offers ZippyPaws Floaterz sturdy turtle shaped water toys for dogs, as well as rope handle bumpers and a variety of floating balls.
A kiddy pool with hard sides can be a good non-inflatable option for cooling off; just hose down and stow away. Other pluses: The doggos also have a lot of fun splashing around and in colder weather it is a great sand or snow play area. The Sun Squad Wading Kiddie Pool is inexpensive and has an embossed bottom so it’s less slippery.
In most backyards, a simple, heavy-duty plastic or slip and slide water slide can be set up. If yours doesn’t have an attached barrier at the bottom, make sure you put something soft there.
Studio 21 Graphix’s slide has a crash pad at the finish line as well as two lanes for races and a sprinkler curtain for driving through on the way down. Wow Watersports’ Strike Zone waterslide is 25 x 6 feet slippery; Zigzag sprinkler patterns keep the ride wet, fat pontoons on either side keep riders inside, and two sleds are included. Do you have a really long garden? Get two; they can be connected to each other.
If you have a lot of space, consider the Costway inflatable bouncy house and water slide, which has a bouncy area, a water gun, two slides, a basketball hoop, and several balls. It comes with a storage bag for easy portability.
Los Angeles-based Marisa Issa says her family’s favorite pool games are cornhole and a floating basketball hoop, but her favorite is a Frontgate floating mat “only mom can use,” she says. The sleek, minimalist white float has a headrest and is made of dense, sea-quality foam that is suitable for chlorine or salt water pools.
If you’d prefer to sit a little upright, Frontgate has a floating armchair with an attached ottoman. Choose between aqua, blue or flamingo pink. Or splash around on a large pool chaise with cup holders.
Would you like to hang out in a garden pool with a handful of friends? Funboy has a 9 foot wide floating metal crown with cup holders. Or laze luxuriously in the company’s Bali Cabana Lounger with its curved integrated umbrella, tropical leaf pattern, cup holders and practical tethers.
BigMouth has some inflatable food-related food items like a giant egg pop, pizza slice, donut, watermelon slice, cheeseburger, and taco.
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