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KC play cafes provide space for parents to relax, children to be active

'I’m able to work, I’m able to have a coffee [and] I’m able to connect with friends'
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Posted at 8:58 AM, Feb 07, 2024

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Parents, do you feel like when you leave the house, you have to pick between a place for you or a place for your kids? Play cafes offer a solution.

As more pop up around Kansas City, each unique space is built with the intent to appeal to you and your kids.

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Tiffany Kim opened MY Play Café in Lee’s Summit in 2020 after she visited a play cafe in Las Vegas.

“I called it the most relaxing day of my motherhood career,” she said. “Just creating a safe space where moms and dads can sit down, relax. There’s a gate right when you check in, so you don’t have to worry about your toddlers escaping.”

MY Play Café member Excene Spencer said she sometimes visits the cafe with her daughter multiple times a day.

“Knowing that you’re in a room with others that are in a similar season of life as you is so priceless,” she said. “I’m able to work, I’m able to have a coffee [and] I’m able to connect with friends. My little one is running around, she’s taking a great nap when she’s done.”

You’ll find a MY Play Café in Gardner and also soon in the Parkville area.

Play cafe-concept Humanette will open soon in the Brookside neighborhood. Co-founder Jamie Hickey showed us where the coffee bar and cafe seating will be as the space undergoes construction.

“Sometimes you just need to get out of your space and get into a space that feels curated for you," Hickey said.

Along with places to play, a co-working space and tween lounge are in the works, too.

Inspired Play Café opened in Overland Park in 2021.

Owner Bianca Sisillo said they offer a full cafe menu, including breakfast burritos.

As play cafes gain popularity, she said people contact her from all over, even other countries. Sisillo plans to expand to more locations.

Busy Bean Play Café opened in Liberty last year.

Since opening in August, more than 6,200 kids have come through the doors. Busy Bean Play Café's space encourages Montessori-inspired play and learning with no technological or sound-making toys.

Each play cafe around KC offers unique elements — different styles of play, Boba tea and avocado toast, or beer and wine (Humanette).

Some play cafes are available to rent for birthday parties, and many offer monthly memberships.

You can also pay for the day and make reservations for play times.

Kim said MY Play Café cleans and sanitizes between play times.

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