Montessori Academy of Lancaster’s Newest Playground

playground equipment in Lancaster PA

Play is a relationship-driven business

Montessori Academy of Lancaster is a unique school nestled in the beautiful Pennsylvania countryside of Manheim Township. It offers a holistic approach to student learning with student-tended gardens, nature trails and farm life. The academy is also unique in launching their newest playground and third playground with the help of General Recreation’s playground consultant, Steve Hemler.

The school built its first playground, a Landscape Structures PlayBooster®, in the early 2000s for children ages 5 to 12 years, followed by a playground for 6 to 23 months olds in 2008. The newest playground focuses on play for ages 2 to 12.

The academy’s principal, Mrs. Karen B. Rubenstein, shared, “Our criteria for this new playground project was customer service and design quality. Steve’s expertise and friendly demeanor certainly help in our being a ‘return customer.’”
another newest playground

On working with Mrs. Rubenstein and her team, Steve says, “They stay committed to the project. It shows we’ve taken care of them. They have the confidence and comfort to entrust us with turnkey projects within a long-term relationship–it’s not transactional. We really appreciate that in a client.”

“I’ve been very impressed with the personal service. From our very first meeting, Steve’s professional manner, understanding of our needs and working within our budget were an extremely positive experience. The quality of the equipment also keeps us returning for more!” explains Mrs. Rubenstein.

“We did an extensive ‘catalog’ search to find the equipment that was best for our facility. After comparing prices, quality and the look we wanted, we chose Gen Rec,” she adds.

The school’s newest playground was installed to replace an older wooden structure. They wanted a space for their older toddlers, as well as their 3 to 6 year-old friends, along with elements their other playgrounds didn’t have.

“Even with a limited budget, I think we got a great variety of equipment,” she says. “And, as for the results, the children LOVE the new playground!”

The playground’s color palette includes natural greens and browns, along with brightly colored stepping pods and block climbers for excellent visibility. Various play features like the Wiggle Worm Crawl Tunnel and Double Poly Slide encourage cooperative and social play.

In determining an approach to the structures selected, Mrs. Rubenstein explains that they also wanted the children to be able to “negotiate” the equipment and “problem solve outside as well as in the classroom.” She and her staff believe the newest playground allows for that.

“We’re hoping to enhance the playground space for our older elementary friends. We have seen great options, we just need to find the money to be able to do it,” she adds optimistically.

To learn more about how to choose playground equipment for kids to enhance the playground experience for a variety of ages, contact your General Recreation Sales Consultant at 800-726-4793 or

Learn More about other General Recreation’s Playground Projects.

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