Seattle Center has a new children’s play area that replaced the old theme park area. The play area, called “Artists at Play”, is located in the Next 50 Plaza between Seattle Center Armory and the EMP Museum. It is definitely a “must-see” and worth checking out. It actually reminds me of something you would read in a Dr. Seuss book. In my opinion, the imaginative stories that Dr. Seuss creates come to life at Artists at Play.

There are play areas for all ages: Tall, Artful, Inspired, and Sound. Though, the sight-to-see is the play area for ages 5-12. It includes a 35-foot climbing tower that leads to two giant slides. And don’t worry about falling off because the walkways are enclosed with rope and the slides are tunnels. An ADA-accessible carousel is just east of the tower, while a miniature area for ages 2-5 sits west of it. There is also a giant, orange Labyrinth with a Rebus at its center, where children can keep busy, trying to figure out where to go next and discover its hidden mysteries.

South of the tower are sound swings, which are also ADA accessible. Every time you swing back and forth, sound is created. Throughout the playground, you can also experience child-inspired musical instruments, listening stations, play mounds, and “story lines”. A majority of the sounds are human-powered, so you have to work for it, in order to hear something. Are you imagining that Dr. Seuss playground now?  

My eldest son is 4-yrs-old and he loves the giant slides; though, climbing up to them was a challenge for him. My youngest, who is 2, loved the Sound Plays, including the Pebble Chimes and Letter Tree! They had a blast. 

The artists and creators of the play area had the community’s input, too. They gathered input and feedback from local kids, so that Artists at Play can truly reflect “Seattle’s imagination” through sound and motion. So next time you’re at the Seattle Center or just need a place to take the kids, be sure to check out Artists at Play!


Artists at Play Features:

- Accessible Carousel

Climbing Tower


Letter Tree

Listening Stations

Pebble Chimes

Play Mounds

Rain Sticks

Sound Fence & Swings

Story Lines