Ashland Town Center has offered families a play area for over 15 years and the newest version is themed to inspire young minds to embrace educational play STEM-related activities. STEM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering and Math, and the new indoor play area boasts a space theme, complete with a space shuttle and a focus on family healthcare.
Located in Ashland, KY right where Ohio, West Virginia and Kentucky meet, Ashland Town Center is considered the premier indoor shopping destination in the region.
According to Marketing Director Jaime Bloss, the Center, which is owned by WP Glimcher, takes its play areas seriously.
“We have had multiple educational play areas over the years and have offered play as an amenity for more than 15 years,” says Bloss. “We want to position ourselves as a family destination where parents can come and shop, kids can play, and they can eat in the food court and have a great day here.”
The new play area, which was designed, manufactured and installed by PLAYTIME, features a countertop with stools so that parents can sit outside the play area and watch their children romp.
The play area’s sponsor is King’s Daughters Medical Center and, according to Bloss, it was the medical center’s idea to create a space-themed play area to inspire STEM-related fun.
“Our last play area had an educational healthy living theme,” she says. “We were excited that King’s Daughters Medical Center wanted to spark children’s interest in the STEM areas and that this play area would be completely different from our past areas.”
Tom Dearing, Integrated Communications director of KDMC, told The Daily Independent that the mall approached the hospital about a year ago to do a sponsorship for a play area.
“After we talked about it, really our first idea was something that was going to inspire kids, no matter what they went into and we very quickly came to an outer space theme that had stuff to do with math, science and engineering,” said Dearing.
The soft, indoor play area features a 10-foot-tall space shuttle, Saturn, a moon, a satellite, a comet and other heavenly bodies. The carpet is also space themed with different galaxies, stars and clouds on its colorful surface.
PLAYTIME’s DuraSoft safety surfacing and poured-in-place flooring are the safest in the industry. The company’s custom carpet graphics complete the themed play experience and offer expanded opportunities for sponsor branding.
Bloss says that, since the educational play area opened on June 9, it has been packed with families.
“Everybody’s excited,” she says. “We’re happy to offer our families a new play experience as they shop at Ashland Town Center.”
Ashland Town Center is an enclosed mall in Ashland, KY, serving Ohio, Kentucky and West Virginia residents. Located on U.S. Highway 23 in Boyd County near downtown Ashland, the Ashland Town Center is an easy drive for many in surrounding areas. The Center offers top retailors such as Victoria’s Secret, Buckle, The Children’s Place, American Eagle Outfitters, BELK, Crazy 8, Finish Line, T.J. Maxx and more.
The PLAYTIME indoor play area is located beside the food court at Ashland Town Center.
Video by Rachel Atkins, The Daily Independent.