By Mischelle Brown

Mischelle reached out to us in 2016, telling us of her passions for play and in 2017, we met her at the Playwork Campference! It was wonderful to hear her perspective and learn of her passion. She has big plans for her community and some big adventures ahead! Here are some of her thoughts.

What started out as a weekend exploration at the first-ever Playwork Campference. February 16-19, 2017, on how to build my own one-acre adventure playground by myself turned into life lessons on the importance of community, starting small and diversity. Landing in Val Verde, California I would meet some of the worlds greatest playworkers, play advocates, enthusiasts and researchers to ever commune in the United States. Boy, what a sight to behold!

The nuggets of wisdom from the veterans of play I received straight away were to build an adventure play community, start with small one-day pop-up play schemes or play spaces, add additional community partners like museums, schools, non-profits or recreation departments to co-create with and like ideas.

My big question was where are all the play people of color? How come I’m the only one here? The veterans of play exclaimed, “Exactly”?! On that day one I decided going forward I’d have to do my Mahatma Gandhi thing and “be the change I wanted to see in the world” to bring adventure play equity to black and brown kids.

So with that on March 27, 2017, my nonprofit, Humans2nature inc., together with:

  • the City of Cleveland’s Division of Recreation’s 18 recreation centres;
  • Cleveland State University;
  • Home Depot and Cultured Bazaar, and;
  • the city of Cleveland’s first-ever “loose parts” pop-up adventure playground on the grounds of Camp George Forbes.
Popping Up in Cleveland
Water Experiment pond – Camp George Forbes, Cleveland, Ohio


Popping Up in Cleveland
Using tools – Camp Georges Forbes, Cleveland, Ohio


Popping Up in Cleveland
Fishing Kids with handcrafted fishing tools

The Playwork Campference was the confirmation that my purpose, adventure play for life, is real and that there is a world full of other players committed to the motto, “play is for everyone”. Thank you, Playwork Campference!

To host your own pop-up adventure playground, register with us here for some free resources. To read more about the Campference, check out these three blog posts. To follow the activities of us at Pop-Up Adventure Play, like us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter and check out our website.