Best Playground

Upshur Recreation Center
4300 Arkansas Ave. NW
Before I had a kid, I thought all parks were pretty much the same. Oh, how wrong I was; 18 months later, I’m all too familiar with the particular drawbacks and advantages of quite a few of our city’s recreation facilities. This one doesn’t have swings; at that one, you wouldn’t want to talk to any of the other moms and dads (or more annoying, they wouldn’t deign to talk to you). Upshur Park, though, has it all: sturdy new equipment in bright colors and interesting shapes. (Some of it’s even fun for adults to ride.) A diverse group of friendly kids and parents from the surrounding Petworth neighborhood. A rubberized floor to prevent injuries from the inevitable falls. In the summer, a swimming pool. Swings. A big, grassy hill, from which you can watch Little League baseball games. It’s even got Wi-Fi, for those moments when you just have to check that work email and/or watch that streaming video of the end of the Pigskins game.