When Holt native and MSU graduate Kasey Shoemaker had twin girls, she knew it was time to leave Chicago and come back to the Lansing area to be closer to her family. When she returned six months ago, however, she found something missing from her life as a mommy.
“I said, ‘What am I going to do with my two-year-olds?’” says Shoemaker. “I wanted a place on the east side for moms to meet and have some coffee while their kids play.”
It didn’t take her long to open the doors of Play
, an eco-friendly indoor play area for kids on Northwind Drive in East Lansing.
“I wanted to be close the East Lansing Coop and the community garden,” says Shoemaker. “We got it up and running in a couple of months.”
Play is 2,600 square feet of open space with couches and coffee for parents and nature-based, Montessori-style activities for children from infants to six years old. The space features play houses, a miniature farmer’s market and the innovative Imagination Playground, a playscape made of large, movable blue blocks.
“They are usually only found in public institutions,” says Shoemaker. “The parents have had just was much fun with them as the children.”
Play opened just over a week ago, and Shoemaker reports the business was at capacity for the first two days. She already has birthday parties booking up in March.
“It’s been amazing,” she says. “The moms have been great,” she says.