Twinkle Playspace is now open in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. A magical playspace filled with imagination where kids 6 and under can play in the Twinkle world such as the Stardust Tree Fort, the General Store and one my son would adore, Graffiti Studio.
MB: Please tell us how your family became involved in designing and opening Twinkle Playspace, it’s such a unique thought to open a space? How did it all come about?
Vanessa: My family and I have been a part of the Williamsburg community for over 30 years and we wanted to give back to the community in some way. When I lived here with my first son, I was frustrated with what the local places had to offer because I couldn’t get my son to be engaged in any activity for more than 20 minutes. My family owned this building in Williamsburg and the ground floor was an empty commercial warehouse, so I thought it would be great to create a unique and innovative playspace that would engage children and educate them as well. I proposed the idea to my father, who is a civil engineer, and my sister, who shares my enthusiasm for off-the-wall projects and it was as if the floodgates opened. We sat around a table for hours shouting out dozens of ideas for unique exhibits and experiences for kids. Our family set out to design and build the best playspace my kids could imagine. With the overwhelming number of families in the community we thought it was the perfect way to give back.
MB: Was it natural for you to open it in Williamsburg/Greenpoint? I definitely feel the Greenpoint area needed a space such as this especially .
Vanessa: Since my family owned a building here and I lived across the street from our location for 10 years, it was natural for us to open a playspace right here in Williamsburg/Greenpoint. When we decided to open up a playspace in this area, we wanted it to be completely unique and different from anything we’ve seen anywhere. We started researching museums and playspaces and found that there were common essential elements/concepts for a successful design, such as water, sand, air flow, and pretend play. But, to keep the children engaged, all the exhibits had to have the most important element - fun! With Twinkle, we wanted to create exhibits that are more fun than a playground and more engaging than a museum. My father, my sister and I wanted to spark the curiosity of kids and adults alike, so we took the exhibits to the next level. At Twinkle we have a water table, but we made it with a water cyclone. Across the way, colorful scarves shoot into the air with air pressure…and dragons! Our kids love digging holes at the beach but hate putting on sunscreen, and that inspired our sandbox, complete with construction gear, a crane and a bulldozer. Kids enjoy pretend play in a life-like firetruck with a climbable extension ladder, real water hoses and working headlights and siren. There’s even a secret spot where kids can walk on water without getting wet!
Also, to further our efforts of giving back to the local community, we started our Twinkle Charity of the Season. Every 3 months, members can nominate a local charity or local school fund and Twinkle will donate a portion of our proceeds to the selected organization. We want to cultivate and contribute to the community both inside and outside the playspace.
MB: How are you juggling everything?
Vanessa: That’s funny! At the beginning of any venture, there needs to be a lot of involvement as the owner, but fortunately, my sister, Mieka, is my business partner and also runsTwinkle so we can rely on each other to see this off the ground. It isn’t easy being a mother of two and running a business but my kids get to experience and enjoy Twinkle with me! Alex’s favorite spot is the grocery store - he loves filling up his cart and checking out at the working conveyor belt. Brandon’s favorite spot is the interactive fire engine where he can pretend he’s a fireman driving the big rig, shoot water out of the hoses and climb up the extension ladder to save people from the burning house! I’m so glad I get to spend so much time with them and start a new and fun business with my family.
MB: Will Twinkle have any classes, anything coming up we should know about?
Vanessa: Yes, we’re having classes starting in June and will include sports classes, kung- fu, music and movement, and pre-school prep.
is located at 144 Frost Street ,Brooklyn NY, 11211 718-349-1300
718-349-1300Brooklyn NY, 11211