Since early 2015, Buncombe Partnership for Children has been working with community volunteers to provide untraditional play opportunities for children, families and communities. Our group, called Asheville Adventure Play, hosts Pop-Up Adventure Playgrounds in a variety of locations in Buncombe County and the excitement has spread to McDowell and Madison counties. We are excited to announce our new partnership with Buncombe County to provide a series of pop-ups at Buncombe County Sports Park throughout the summer. See our schedule for dates and times.

Pop-Up Adventure Playgrounds are free, public celebrations of child-directed play, stocked with loose parts, such as cardboard boxes, fabric, tape, rope, buckets, sticks, wood, tarps, paint – you name it! These activity events are modeled from the post-WW2 United Kingdom classic adventure playground movement, which gently introduces themes of freedom and risk by welcoming people of all ages and abilities to unstructured play together. Asheville Adventure Play volunteers identify pop-up locations, promote the events through social media, and act as play workers to supervise the temporary playgrounds. We participate in about a dozen pop-ups each year at festivals, private businesses, farmer’s markets, summer camps, and public parks.


Children growing up today are spending much less time outdoors and in unstructured play than previous generations and the impact is disturbing. Play helps children to be physically active and better coordinated, improves social skills, enhances creativity, develops problem solving and critical thinking, take appropriate risks and is fun! Unstructured free play in the out-of doors bring a host of benefits to children – from being smarter to more cooperative to healthier.

Funding from the Active Play Alliance has allowed us to purchase an enclosed trailer for storage of transportation of the materials needed to host a pop-up adventure playground.

Check our Facebook Page for upcoming locations and information about the Playwork Movement in WNC.