WE NEED DONATIONS! LET US KNOW IF YOU WANT TO DONATE ANY OF THESE ITEMS AND WE WILL COME AND GET THEM.
**Please make sure your donated items are washed and cleaned before pick-up**
Cardboard boxes big and small!
Rope or String
Containers (buckets or things that can be re-used, i.e. yogurt containers, coffee cans, tin cans, etc.)
Box Cutters (These would be for playworkers and volunteers ONLY…we would assist in cutting cardboard)
Scissors (Again, for playworkers and volunteers)
Leaves and sticks
Weird Bonus Items:
Shipping Barrels (like thick cardboard barrels, great for rolling in!)
Nuts and Bolts
Old phones of the non-cellular variety
Giant Water Bottles (like those 5 gallon type)
Non-tox paint with corn starch, food coloring and water
Huge canvas painting tarps
That black plastic ribbed drainage tubing
toilet plungers (like 20 of them)
big tubs of water w sponges
lots of 8 ft 2x2s
pots and pans
We are delighted to announce an upcoming “Campference”!! We are hosting this camp/conference as part of our priceless connection with Pop-up Adventure Play out of the UK.
In many of our experiences of facilitating adventure play whether as a pop-up temporary event or on our permanent site of Eureka Villa one thing stands out as vital to the environment of free-play and that is PLAYWORK!
Playwork is the focus of this event so it is natural we would give attendees the opportunity to camp on Eureka Villa, our budding permanent adventure playgrounds site here in beautiful Val Verde, CA. Much is being coordinated still but this event will be a sure no miss if you are interested in the path of playwork and its possibility of transforming our relationship to kids, play, and the primal need to explore.
The campference will include on the ground activities, workshops, reflections, and practice of playwork. There will also be exclusive key note speakers and a screening. Please fill out an interest form if you want to join us for this very special International event here
Feel free to reach out to either pop-up adventure play or us if you have any questions or seek further information.
Hope to see you in February!!
by Alex Coté
When I first learned about playwork, it crystallized everything I’d been feeling about working with kids and the discomfort I felt about what I was being taught in other settings. My questions disappeared (“Why can’t I let kids climb up the slide? Why shouldn’t they jump off the bench? What’s so bad about playing in the rain?”) and were replaced by all new questions (“Is this possible in the US?” “What if kids are being mean to each other?” “When do I step in?” “Does it really work to just let them play?”). Once again, the more I learned about playwork and the philosophy at the core, the more those questions began to be answered too. It all comes down to prioritizing play and the nuance of how best to do that in different scenarios. At Campference I got to meet people at all stages of that journey and even got to scaffold some realizations so similar to the ones I have stumbled into along the way. It’s such a privilege to experience seeing something you say about play reach someone in your audience – the way their face pauses and turns inward before refocussing out again. We all got to witness those moments that weekend. One of the attendees said it felt like summer camp. In so many ways it did – the fire and friends, but also the way it feels like we all went through something together and came out different than we went in. Partly, I think it was because it was so powerful to have those of us who do really good playwork practice together since so often we are the lone voice in a room full of people who have adult agendas for children other than pure play. It can be a struggle to have the importance of one’s work constantly under-appreciated. At Campference, people came from around the world because they value play. It felt momentous.
And then there were the smaller magical moments that stood out to me too: walking with the world’s only professor of playwork past Muscle Beach, watching the kids tell each other scary stories around the campfire as the sky grew dark and their eyes wide, playing with glowsticks with other grownups who weren’t afraid to play (as many glowsticks as you wanted! Who hasn’t dreamed of this day?), watching the kids catch concrete “fish” in the river of rainwater flowing down the little street as the playworkers grew more and more wet and cold but also grateful to be right there in wet socks and making play possible. Last, of course, I loved talking playwork in every spare moment with new and old mentors. The first night after everyone had arrived and we had our first fire and first dinner and the forecast looked apocalyptic and we’d made an emergency plan a few of us sat around the last embers of fire and shared a beer in the dark. We talked about play and the storm, how much we loved our work and how our shoes might melt if we stuck them too close to the coals. As much as we could make it, Campference was playwork embodied: people coming together and making play possible.
We are extremely pleased to be working with Santa Clarita Valley Adventure Play to bring to you the first ever Playwork Campference. During 16th to 19th February 2017, we will be gathering together in Val Verde CA, USA to celebrate playwork in the surroundings of the hatchling site, Eureka Villa Adventure Playground.
The Playwork Campference 2017 will have the following focuses:
Playwork Practice – specifically learning how to embed playwork into both our professional and personal lives.
Bringing Alive Theoretical Concepts – seeing playwork theories come alive, and then building our understanding of key concepts through community discussions
Making Connections – it has long been the focus of Pop-Up Adventure Play to bring together folks with the same common goal. This is a great opportunity to realise this by meeting people in person.
Rather excitedly, would like to introduce you to some wonderful people who will be headlining our Campference:
Professor Fraser Brown, the worlds first (and only) Professor of Playwork, Head of Playwork at the School of Health & Community Studies at Leeds Beckett University, UK.
Erin Davis, Director of the very successful documentary, The Land.
Jill Wood, founder of Bayou City Play and AP, an adventure playground Houston, TX.
At the Campference, you will also meet:
Morgan Leichter-Saxby and Suzanna Law, both Playwork PhD Candidates at Leeds Beckett University in the UK and founders of Pop-Up Adventure Play
Andy Hinchcliffe, former manager of a children’s center in the UK and now part of Team Pop-Up Adventure Play.
Jeremiah Dockray and Erica Larsen Dockray of Santa Clarita Adventure Play and proud founders of Eureka Villa Adventure Playground
We are also excited to include some free-to-attend, open-to-public events as part of our Campference:
A Film Screening of The Land and Imagine Kolle 37 will take place on 17th February at 7pm, hosted generously by SCVi Charter School. A wonderful panel of directors and experts will be on hand afterwards for a Q&A session.
A pop-up adventure playground will be held in the afternoon of 18th February at Val Verde Park. Bring your family and let the children take the lead in this temporarily loose parts playground, which will be staffed by trained playworkers.
Hello there, playful people…it is that time of year again! We have been approved to join the LA2050 Grants Challenge for a chance to be funded with $100,00o. This award would help us to put some much-needed fencing and utilities together at Eureka Villa, as well as fund playworkers for ONE YEAR of free Pop-Up Adventure Playgrounds around LA County! It’s very exciting, but WE NEED YOUR HELP!
There is a public voting period that starts on Tuesday, October 18th and runs until October 25th. This is YOUR chance to support LA County’s FIRST Adventure Playground. So set your calendars, alarm clocks, cuckoo clocks, biological clocks, and signal fires to vote at 9am PST on October 18th! We would love to have a big early showing that puts us at the top of a list with lots of eyeballs on it.
But before that date, you can help by sharing and commenting on the project page at the LA2050 website, as well as checking out a few of the other amazing projects this year. Help us get the word out!
Here is the link to vote! You must register with your email, Facebook, or Google account.
Time to open Eureka Villa up to anyone who is curious about this space we keep talking about and these big ideas we are throwing around.
Please join us for a Mini Open House to check out the space and if you have kiddos, to give them a chance to explore the possibilities.
To keep a community vibe, we made this a snack potluck so please feel free to bring a snack or drink to share if you can.
We have 2 long picnic tables with benches and will have a few blankets on the ground but if you want to bring chairs and or picnic blankets for your comfort please feel free to do so.
This will give us a chance to answer your questions and give you a tour of the place and maybe even see some playwork and adventure play in action.
Here are the details for the event:
Friday, October 21st, 2016 4:30p-6p
Eureka Villa Adventure Playground
28700 Madison Way
Val Verde, CA 91384
Hope to see you there! Please send us an email with any questions etc at email@example.com or give us a call at
Help SCV Adventure Play make LA the best place to PLAY!
We need your support!
Santa Clarita Valley Adventure Play (SCVAP) has applied for a grant to bring adventure play to children across Los Angeles county. We need your vote to help us do this!
The LA2050 grant will enable us to provide a respite from children’s over-schedule and coddled lives, by bringing accessible, unstructured time and space for children to imagine, explore and create their own reality.
The grant will fund us to take the Pop-Up Playground program to children’s own communities, and also help develop the first permanent adventure playground in Los Angeles.
To make this dream a reality, we need your support. We need to get the message OUT and the votes IN!
Here’s how you can help:
- On October 18th at 9AM, head to this link: http://bit.ly/voteSCVAP
- Vote for SCV Adventure Play in the “Play” category
Get the word out!
Please email your friends / networks to let them know about the bid. Every vote counts!
Also, share on social media – including a photo (see below) to help people remember what great adventure play looks like.
- I voted for free play in LA with @SCVAdvPlay in the #LA2050 challenge! Give children freedom, vote http://bit.ly/voteSCVAP
- Bring #adventureplay to all of #LA, vote @SCVAdvPlay for #LA2050! http://bit.ly/voteSCVAP #freeplayLA
Re-ignite the adventure of childhood. #freeplayLA – Vote for @SCVAdvPlay in #LA2050! http://bit.ly/voteSCVAP
Example Facebook posts:
- I just voted for SCV Adventure Play because their project: Gives children freedom, space, and a place to be themselves! If you feel kids deserve the same, vote here http://bit.ly/voteSCVAP
- Hey Facebook! Check out this awesome project where we get both a permanent adventure playground and a year of free pop ups throughout LA! http://bit.ly/voteSCVAP
- WE VOTED! Support SCVAP in their LA2050 campaign to make ‘Free-Play’ in LA a reality! Check out http://bit.ly/voteSCVAP, vote and share! #freeplayLA
- LA2050 Challenge: Vote SCVAP! Help support the creation of a space for child-led adventure, imagination and freedom. The first permanent Adventure Playground in Los Angeles. Vote here http://bit.ly/voteSCVAP
Facebook Profile Image:
Follow up posts:
NY adventure playground – This project is being delivered by our friends at play:ground in NYC – If you would like to see this happen in Los Angeles please vote for SCVAP and share our LA2050 challenge to make this a reality http://bit.ly/voteSCVAP
Once you’ve voted, consider changing your FB Profile pic to our “I Voted” sticker below. If you could leave this up until the voting period is over (Oct. 25th at 5pm PST), this will let others know that this is important!
- Post an “I voted” sticker with the link (http://bit.ly/voteSCVAP) to our voting page and share with your followers.
Instagram share picture:
Video Greeting Card
- Create a short video clip “ I voted for SVC Adventure Play in the LA2050 Challenge to help make LA the best place to play – You should too! Check out the link below for more information about this project and why it needs your vote!” Please attach the following link (http://bit.ly/voteSCVAP) and tag us ( in your posts to our voting page and share with your followers.
- Create a “Good Luck” Video Card. Let folks know why you support us and hoping for a win for us! Please attach the following link (http://bit.ly/voteSCVAP) and tag us in your post and share with your followers.
Blogger Paragraph Example:
I wanted to tell you about how you can help children in Los Angeles have more play in their lives. Vote for SCV Adventure Play in the LA2050 challenge this week, to fund adventure play in children’s neighbourhoods, and to open the city’s first adventure playground.
SCV Adventure Play promotes play for kids to be themselves, freedom for them to fully realize their childhood, and giving them a respite from an over-scheduled culture. The LA2050 Grant Challenge will provide Pop-Up Adventure Playgrounds around LA County for all of 2017 for FREE, and help open their permanent Adventure Playground, Eureka Villa!
Vote here http://bit.ly/voteSCVAP from Oct 18th-25th to help them to make LA the best place to Play!
Above is an example, but feel free to write your own post to help us out, but please make sure to share the link!
Photos for you to use as you please
We have a slew of events and pop-ups coming up to get the word on on our Grant Challenge! With Andy staying with us we can do so much more!
10/15 10-11a – ARTOBER Central Park, Santa Clarita – 27150 Bouquet Canyon Rd
10/15 2:30-6p – CALARTS ALUMNI AND PARENTS WEEKEND Valencia – 2700 McBean Parkway
10/21 1-4p – OPEN PICNIC AND PLAY AT EUREKA VILLA!* – 28700 Madison St, Val Verde, CA 91384
10/22 2:30-4p – SILVERLAKE RECREATION CENTER – 1850 W Silver Lake Dr, 90026
10/30 – LA TIERRA DE LA CULEBRA, Highland Park – 240 S Avenue 57 Los Angeles, CA 90042
If you are interested in having a pop-up or playwork workshop in your neighborhood let us know!!
*Please let us know if you are coming
For updates on these events please visit our Facebook page.
We are happy to announce we are hosting Pop-Up Adventure Play’s newest member, Andy Hinchcliffe, for the next 9 weeks! He will be joining us as an advisor, pal, playworker, and helping us out with the formation of Eureka Villa and more!
Andy has more than ten years’ experience in Playwork, beginning as a volunteer and progressing on to managing a Community and Children’s Centre in an area of high-deprivation in the UK. He has designed, campaigned for and managed provision across the district, providing extensive services to local residents from pre-birth to recreational activities for the elderly, always with play at its heart.
He graduated in 2012 with a First-Class Honours Degree in Playwork, and has begun the process at the doctoral level. With Professor Fraser Brown’s charity, Andy has supported a residential play- scheme in Romania with some of the most deprived children in Europe. The scheme allows the children to detach from their otherwise desperate lives, to play, relax and enjoy a short period of unfettered childhood.
Andy is a valued and experienced tutor on Pop-Up Adventure Play’s twelve-module distance-learning Playwork Development Course. He first served as a board member, and has now moved on to working full time with the organisation running workshops and pop-up adventure playgrounds in countries around the world including the UK, USA and Costa Rica.
In addition to all this wonderfulness, he’s always got some great playworking stories and knowledge to share as we continue our adventure!
Registration Open for Upcoming One of a Kind Playwork Campference February 16-19, 2017 in Val Verde, CA
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 9/20/2016
Val Verde, CA – February 16-19, 2017 – UK based Pop-up Adventure Play is teaming up with Santa Clarita Valley Adventure Play to host a first time Playwork Campference in Val Verde, CA February 16-19th 2017.
The Campference will headline Professor Fraser Brown, Head of Playwork at Leeds Beckett University’s School of Health & Community Studies, Erin Davis, Director of the documentary “The Land”, and Jill Wood, founder of “AP” adventure playground in Houston, TX. Campference programming will also include a variety of hands on workshops, keynote Q&As, a screening of “The Land”, discussions and activities surrounding playwork theory and practice with National and International playworkers, and more. Early bird registration ends 10/2/2016, overall registration ends 1/16/2017. Participants also have the option to camp on site at the Eureka Villa Adventure Playground slated to be the seventh in the US.
Playwork involves in depth knowledge of play psychology, play “cues”, and risk benefit assessment. Playworkers traditionally work on Adventure Playgrounds where they make sure the children stay safe but do not inhibit the play in any way. However, playwork concepts may be applied to a variety of instances whether working with kids or adults in formal (i.e. educational or structured) or informal private, public or domestic settings. Adventure Playgrounds have been commonplace throughout Europe since World War II and are seeing a resurgence in the US. The new wave of adventure play has been covered by various news sources including the New York Times, Atlas Obscura and The Atlantic. The playwork campference will facilitate an international conversation between diverse individuals ranging from decades and degrees in playwork to those brand new to it. “I’m very excited about coming and meeting all the people who will be at the Campference. … It’s going to be an opportunity to do stimulating work to get the whole idea of playwork going.. to give it a base level to work out from” said Professor Brown. Regarding the state of play in America, he believes, “it’s very timely right now… things are beginning to develop. Right now I have three American based students doing post-graduate work with us.” Professor Brown has written numerous books on the benefits of playwork including his experiences doing therapeutic playwork with children in orphanages in Romania and Transylvania.
Erica Larsen-Dockray, co-founder of Santa Clarita Valley Adventure Play remarks about the Campference, “We could not be more delighted to host such a unique and necessary event here in Southern California. Playwork concepts reaffirm two very important elements which I feel are lacking in the US. One is kids being allowed more self-directed time in their days and second is adults supporting and trusting kids to take risks and practice independence. Culturally we have forgotten how to let kids just play on their own terms as well as embrace play in our adult lives.”
Suzanna Law, Co-Founder of Pop-up Adventure Play and current Leeds Playwork Phd candidate says, “This is something of momentous occasion for me because we have been working so hard at Pop-up Adventure play to bring playwork ideas to people across the US and hopefully better play opportunities for children as a consequence. A child has a right to play, but in order to play they also need to feel safe and in an environment where they are supported. They have a right to believe and to direct everything that is in their own lives and in the US this may be taken for granted and we need to know now in order to support play we need to support the whole child.”
Pop-up Adventure play was founded in 2010 by Suzanna Law and Morgan Leichter-Saxby and aims to help make a children’s right to play a reality in every neighborhood by disseminating playwork principles to a range of audiences. Operating primarily in the US and UK, they provide long-distance and in-person support to play advocates in seventeen countries and recently completed a world lecture tour.
Santa Clarita Valley Adventure Play was founded by Jeremiah Dockray and Erica Larsen-Dockray in 2014 after Jeremiah began the playwork course. While working on a course assignment he came across an abandoned 2 acre park which is now the developing home of Eureka Villa Adventure Playground. It will be the only adventure playground in Los Angeles County.
Aside from the park’s development, they have held numerous pop-up adventure playgrounds all over Los Angeles County for private and public events. For more information on them please visit www.scvadventureplay.com
Anyone interested in attending or registering can visit the Campference information page at: https://popupadventureplaygrounds.wordpress.com/playwork-campference-2017/
Early bird registration ending on 10/2/2016 is $375 for campers and $300 for non-campers. Regular registration ending on 1/16/2017 is $475 for campers and $400 for non-campers. Camping rates include meals, snacks, and basic camping equipment if needed. Financial aid may be available on a first come basis.
Morgan Leichter-Saxby, Co-Founder Pop-Up Adventure Play
firstname.lastname@example.org / 914.319/0994
Jeremiah Dockray, Co-Owner Santa Clarita Valley Adventure Play
email@example.com / 661.670.8663
We are so lucky here in Val Verde!
We have the best neighbors who will give up a Saturday to help us get Eureka Villa cleaned up as well as lend their tractors, bobcats, trailers, trucks, tools…. the list goes on. Dealing with trees, leaves, dirt and brush void of any care for around 30 years is a big job and we took our first stab at it September 10th, 2016.
Local builders John Campbell of John Campbell Masonry, Steven Howse from Howse Restoration & Building @HowseRestorationBuilding, Vince Cantella, Darcy Stinson, Kevan Smalley all were our big hitters for the day! Thank you guys to the moon and back!!
Also a big thank you to all the other folks who came out to lend a hand! We are so very grateful for your support and help!!
We will post “after” pictures soon.
Our next big clean up day will be on Saturday December 3rd. Give us a shout if you are up for joining us as we hammer out some big and small projects. firstname.lastname@example.org
OUR PROJECT HAS BEEN ACCEPTED AS AN APPLICANT IN THE LA 2050 GRANT!
SCV Adventure Play is teaming up with Pop-up Adventure Play of the UK who will send an official play-worker to expand our pop-up adventure playgrounds into low income communities throughout LA County and help these areas cultivate their own play culture and spaces. It will also further develop “Eureka Villa” a permanent adventure playground in Northern LA County as a destination for young people to play on a beautiful 2 acre wild space and serve as a training ground for future play-workers.
Watch our video where we talk about what we’re up to!
Please check out our site and throw us a vote and share with anyone who would also be interested in supporting us!
Here is bit more about our project:
What we can do to make LA the best place to play is provide a space and materials where people can vibrantly engage in play that stretches their abilities, gives them exercise, challenges their problem-solving skills, and encourages socialization.
Adventure Play is different than typical play spaces and activities because it is totally open-ended, player-led, multifaceted, believes in the concept of play-workers to support kids with or without parental supervision, and is adaptive to any culture and community. One of the best things about adventure play is that it is ever evolving to the needs of the participants, as projects are created and destroyed, as materials come and go within the landscape, and interests and focus change.
We will help kids get out of the home and back into the parks and playgrounds by giving them time and materials to explore their areas and meet and connect with neighbors. It will help foster community by getting families and neighbors together creating safer neighborhoods for kids and adults alike. The more people playing outdoors the safer it is.
Our play-work education program will continually support free play and its benefits by outfitting others with the ability to facilitate more free-play events in numerous communities and homes in L.A. County with the goal of improving the quality of life through play for all. Adventure play supports implementing and engaging neighborhoods to claim spaces to play in which may be otherwise unused. Many pop-up adventure playgrounds can restore empty or vacant lots into vibrant play spaces just by adding kids, loose parts and cardboard boxes.
In addition, our outreach for play will continue to look for places where we can help facilitate and expand play opportunities in LA County. Our philosophy is that play is a human right, a social issue rather than only a parenting one.
With the support of this grant, the start-up of Eureka Villa will give LA County claim to the 7th Adventure Playground in the United States. Eureka Villa will also be one of the only locations in the US to develop regular play-work training program which will produce individuals skilled in the psychology of play and further the reach of our mission to make open-ended play a priority in children’s lives. At this point such programs exist primarily in Europe. Eureka Villa will serve as a hub for play-work training in the western hemisphere.
Arbor Day Festival April 12th at Central Park!!
Jeremiah was there for fort making!! Lots of twigs and fabric, string and wood was played with and kids and adults alike had a blast creating all sorts of things. There was a viral push for bow and arrows using just string and 2 sticks, but kids pushed the boundaries of the concept. See some of the amazing creations below.
Here’s more information on the festival too:
Come join us next year!
On March 8th and 9th we held a TWO DAY Pop-up Adventure Playground in Newhall! Day one was at Newhall Park and day two at A Little Patch of Earth Preschool and it went smashingly! We were also lucky enough to have in our presence THREE playworkers from the UK’s Pop-up Adventure Play! Here are some pictures documenting the fun that was had and the creations that were made.
Here is the flyer for our upcoming Pop-up Adventure Playground hosted by A Little Patch of Earth Preschool and Jeremiah and Erica Dockray.
On Main Street
between Lyons and 9th Street
6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m
Thanks to our friends at the Art Tree we are going to take over an area to Adventure play and once the sun goes down… we will play with light and material, maybe even some photography. Who knows!! 😀
Do let us know if you would like to volunteer your time to help us gather materials, setup or take down.
Here’s more on the JAM sessions:
Since March of 2014 we have been holding pop-ups on a regular basis in the Santa Clarita Valley in partnership with the City of Santa Clarita, The Art Tree, and Pop-up Adventure Play’s U.S. tour. The pop-ups usually consist of; 2 to 3 devoted playworkers, a small space, loads of boxes, string, fabric, used or recycled materials and a few hours allowing all who come by to make, create, and invent.
In February 2014 Jeremiah Dockray and Erica Larsen, founders of SCV Adventure Play, purchased a nearly 2 acre, 30 year abandoned, park in Val Verde, CA as the future site of “Eureka Villa” a permanent adventure play space and hopeful hub of study and education in the movement to offer non-product based activity for children and adults alike.
We are now entering our 2nd phase which is devoted to developing the park and expanding the pop-ups within and beyond Santa Clarita Valley. Regarding the park, we are researching and quoting various improvements for it to be made available for the public. This includes arborist assessments on the nearly 30 various types of trees on the property, re-fencing the parameter, brush clearance, and hopefully water setup and power accessibility. Once this cleanup is done, we will hold a soft opening of the Adventure Playground. For the Pop-ups, this includes the purchase of a “Pop-up Truck”, a box truck to be used as storage and transportation (currently all materials are stored in the founder’s garage and is loaded and unloaded into their cars for each pop-up).
Phase 3 is to formalize the park and launch a playwork program. In this phase, our goal is to develop the space as a community, build bathroom facilities on the property, begin an educational program specializing in playworking, and open fully to the public as an adventure playground and gathering space. We were advised by the Pop-up Adventure Play group and Grant Lambie, a play space developer, to keep our evolution organic and allow the community to develop the space as much as possible which means this phase is largely determined by the community surrounding and engaging with the space.
Here are some walk throughs of the future Eureka Villa: