December 2018

The Sandbox

Author: Becca Edwards

Walking into The Sandbox recently, a wave of nostalgia rushed over me as I heard the happy and distinctive squeal of a child going down a slide. I was taken back to when my babies where actually babies and we did what The Sandbox does best: “disguise learning as playing.”

“Right now, our programming is for children up to age eight,” said The Sandbox’s executive director Nancy Fish. “But when we move into the new Lowcountry Celebration Park location in Coligny, our programming will go up to age 12.”

Lowcountry Celebration Park is a new development led by the town, and The Sandbox is excited to be included in it. “They break ground on the infrastructure buildings this coming summer and hope to have the grand opening in June of 2020,” Fish said. “Lowcountry Celebration Park will include a green space for concerts and events, a pavilion, a playground and, of course, our new museum.” At the new location, you can expect to see the same high level of programming, events and exhibits The Sandbox provides our island today.

Currently, The Sandbox’s programs include Imagination Hour (Thursdays from 10:30 to 11:30 a.m.), Free Family Fun Night (first Friday of every month from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.), Summer Camp (July), and the Make, Take, and Playdate Series. According to Fish, “Imagination Hour features story time and related arts and crafts projects. Family Night is so much fun we have families coming from Savannah to participate. And Make, Take and Playdate is a new fun, DIY series for adults to engage in while their children play downstairs in a camp environment. We also have several outreach programs that serve all members of our community.”

Exhibits at The Sandbox include:
An International Bazaar —A grocery store that exercises the child’s physical, cognitive and social skills.
Builders of Tomorrow —A “construction zone” for children to use their imagination and learn about physics.
Charlie’s Perfect Place —A gated area dedicated to infants and toddlers.
Flight Deck —A simulated cockpit where children develop their sense of play and their fine motor skills while maneuvering switches and throttles throughout the cockpit.
Learner’s Loft —The upstairs section of the museum that offers places to read, interact with STEM-based stations, and engage in art, puzzles and games.
Loggerhead Castle —With a magical wand children can move creatures around a magnetic “aquarium” or create their own aquatic scene with sea creatures that cling to an ocean window.
The Aquarium —Children explore aquatic life in this 48-inch salt water aquarium filled with tropical fish.
Rhythm and Hues Room —Kids explore their creative side in this comprehensive art room.
South State Bank —With two teller stations, children learn about money and mathematics.
The Adventure —Modeled after William Hilton’s ship, the exhibit allows children to play with an array of elements including a ladder, periscope, and buttons that create natural sounds.

“Many times older siblings will come with their younger siblings and the older ones are the ones who do not want to leave. They are busy with the light table, or spelling things with pegs, or in the art room—because there really are no other places on the island where they can just create,” Fish said, jokingly adding, “and sometimes the mom’s ready to go and the dads are playing Legos with the kids and they are like, ‘Wait I’m not done yet!’ We think this great because we are all about parents really playing with their kids.”

The Sandbox is located at 18A Pope Avenue Road. For more information, please visit www.thesandbox.org or call (843) 842-7645.

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