Timber Town

by Harrison Boyink / Oct 30, 2013 / 0 comments

Welcome to Zeeland, Michigan, home of one of the most loved playgrounds in West Michigan. Any kid under 12 enjoys it – and over, though they might not admit it so readily. When I was that age, I couldn't wait to go back. The feeling of getting safely lost was awesome.


The name says a lot about the construction; the place is made of wood – and the occasional metal chains to climb on. However, the place is also a work of art. A few murals sprinkled around the area, plus little picturesque nooks and crannies and the wood structures make it more than just a playground for young kids; it becomes a photogenic park for the “olders.”


Welcome to Timber Town



getting to Timber Town playground

Our can't-drive transportation


Castle-like entrance, Timber Town

Castle-like entrance


Timber Town

Backside of the entrance


Carved version of downtown Zeeland

Carved version of downtown Zeeland


Mini Western-style town

Mini Western-style town


The Cathedral, Timber Town playground

This space is about a foot by a foot – fondly dubbed “The Cathedral”. It also happens to be my favorite picture I have ever taken.


Happy butterfly

Happy butterfly


bright colors at the playground

No, this is not filtered at all.


Not all supports are beams

Not all supports are beams...


Shielded by the sun.

Shielded by the sun.


Playground clock

Spin the crank, move the clock. Easy.


Timber Town playground

Ah, so THIS is what makes the place look sun-bleached!


Timber Town playground

The funders of the park.


DNA ladder

The DNA ladder. Kids don't even know they're learning. “Mom, why is that ladder painted like that?” “Oh, so it looks like a DNA strand.” While the young ones might not get it now, later on, in middle school...


playground shields

The reason for the amount of shields on the entrance must be to really give kids the impression of a castle.


light at the end of the tunnel

What does the light at the end of the tunnel slide show? Woodchips! Or, for the imaginative, LAVA! Don't go down there, you'll boil!


Tower of reflections

The tower of reflections! It creates...


playground reflections

… this on the ground. Not quite what you'd expect.


Don't fall in!

Don't fall in! Our childhood story went you'd never get out. It's more applicable now that my shoulders would get stuck.




There are about four different ways to get from any point A to any point B. Two normally involve crouching down and shuffling along, one involves a large jump, and the other involves a really roundabout way that's twice as long as a direct line. Timber Town's about the experience, not quickness. Of course, you could always cut through the lava...


Even at sixteen, I still enjoy Timber Town. However, now it's a perfect set for Lego stop motion photography, still photos, races at breakneck speed, and climbing from place to place in strange ways to avoid the short places that I can't fit in anymore. Plus, at sixteen, I can appreciate the architecture.


No matter what age you are, Timber Town is for you. All your age changes is what you do there and how people look at you as you climb over another railing. Just make sure to bring your camera.




Harris Boyink is a member of the Youth Travel Blogging Mentorship Program


All photos courtesy and copyright Harris Boyink



Exploring Timber Town - a playground not just for kids

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