Things You Can See From a Park Bench

We all know that park benches are a common thing to see at parks, lakes, amusement parks, playgrounds and airports but have you really ever thought about some of the things you can see while sitting on a park bench?

From a recycled plastic bench in a park you could land your eyes on an old man taking a stroll with his best friend.

The Story: After reading the morning paper, Old Man Thomas always takes “Roscoe” for a walk. They’ve been doing this since Mr. Thomas retired almost 10 years ago. The fall is their favorite time of the year to walk, the old man finds the leaves beautiful and it’s a little bit easier for “Roscoe” to stand the weather. You see, “Roscoe” has developed arthritis in his hind quarters do to his old age. Cold weather causes it to flare up and the heat is just too much for an old dog to handle. Mr. Thomas’ favorite poet is Edgar Allen Poe and on their morning strolls he may quote a little from one of his favorite poems while “Roscoe” listens in closely: “In visions of the dark night I have dreamed of joy departed but a waking dream of life and light hath left me broken-hearted.”

From a wood slatted bench near the lake you could spot two men fishing from an old john boat.

The Story: Jerry and his daughter’s boyfriend, Kirk, have decided to spend a weekend together fishing on the lake. They’ve done it before and each trip is a memorable one but this particular weekend is going to be especially memorable. Kirk is about to pop the question to his girlfriend of 5 years and the purpose of this trip is to ask her father for his blessing.

From a concrete bench at an amusement park you could relive your childhood through the eyes of a little girl meeting a princess for the first time.

The Story: Since Kirsten was a year old she has watched “Snow White” 115 times, she just turned 3. She knows every word and can recite all 7 dwarfs with ease. She has wanted nothing more than to meet the princess that is plastered all over her bedroom walls. Her parents, who both work full-time jobs, had to save up the money to take little Kirsten to Disney World and they finally got the chance to make the trip. When Kirsten spotted Snow White with one of her dwarfs, she broke loose from her mother’s tight grip to be sure not to miss her chance. After this meeting, Kirsten was chosen to be princess for the day. She rode in the parade and waved at the other park visitors. This was the day she realized that no dream is too big.

From a plastic coated bench at your local playground you will more than likely see a young child sliding into the arms of their mother or father.

The Story: Sue has taken her daughter to this same playground for 4 years but could never get Carrie to slide down the slide. Carrie has always been afraid of what awaits at the bottom, even if her mother’s arms were always waiting to catch her. This is the first time little Carrie has gotten up the nerve to climb up the ladder and take the plunge to the bottom. She never knew it could be so fun! Now Sue can’t keep her off the slide, everyday when she is picked up from Kindergarten she HAS to stop by the playground to take a few turns sliding down the slide into her mother’s waiting arms.

From a strap steel bench outside of an airport, through tears, you could get the privilege of enjoying a moment when a soldier comes home.

The Story: Who knows…all we care about is that it has a happy ending!

ParknPool | Lexington, VA | sales@parknpool.com | 877.777.3700

Managing Your HOA’s Swimming Pool

During the summer, no other amenity is enjoyed more than a community’s swimming pool.

Though a swimming pool can add to the value of the residence and attract new buyers, managing and maintaining it is a major investment of time, energy and money. In order for an HOA’s swimming pool to be safe, successful and enjoyable, its management staff must address many issues. Proper management is the key to retaining a pool’s value. Community managers play a key role in the day-to-day management and operation of the swimming pool. Their responsibilities range from obtaining the proper permits and licenses to training the staff on the pool’s rules and regulations.

Properly equipping the pool deck is essential to enjoyment and safety. To avoid liability, always furnish the pool area with commercial grade pool furniture. While residential grade chaise lounges, poolside chairs, tables and umbrellas have an enticing price, they are not made for public use. If a resident gets injured on a piece of residential furniture, the management is on their own when it comes to lawsuits.

Contrarily, commercial pool furniture is engineered and built to hold up to constant use daily. If a piece of furniture was to break, you have the manufacturer’s product liability insurance to protect you. In respect to providing an enjoyable pool deck, these are the furniture pieces that you would need:

  • Chaise Lounges
  • Poolside Dining Chairs
  • Poolside Dining & Side Tables
  • Commercial Patio Umbrellas
  • Umbrella Bases
  • Trash Receptacles
  • Lifeguard Chairs

While swimming pools may make for happy residents, they are often a challenge to manage and maintain but by forming a close working relationship with ParknPool Corp and by taking proactive measures to make sure the pool is safe and healthy, the stressful elements of managing a swimming pool can be minimized.

The Impact of Pandemic Puppies on Today’s Dog Parks

More than 23 million American households adopted a pet during the recent pandemic, with the majority of those pets being dogs. The increase in the number of dog parks in the past couple years, as well as the number of existing parks making improvements, can be attributed to not only the number of families adding dogs but also the fact that dog parks are a safe place to congregate. From a cost perspective, dog parks are much more affordable to outfit than other parks or ballfields.

It wasn’t just people adding dogs to their families, but also the increase of people working from home. This created the need for people to take a break. Dog parks provided a great opportunity for someone working from home to take a breather and go to the dog park for socialization. As the pandemic highlighted the importance of people getting outdoors and exercising, many cities and parks departments looked to capitalize on this mindset and enhance their offerings. These enhancements most often included dog parks.

A well-rounded park should have the core utilities: electricity for lighting, water supply for drinking fountains, and shade structures for protection from inclement weather. Dog park agility components include climbing structures, hurdles, jumps, tunnels, and weave poles. One of the main benefits of dog agility is the interaction between the guardian and their pet!

To encourage year-round use, adding safety features like solar lights is helpful. Including creature comforts like adequate seating, protection from the elements, a hand-washing station or restrooms all help to draw people to the dog park…rain or shine. A wide range of site furnishings, like benches, shade structures, trash receptacles, water fountains and bottle fillers all help make dog parks welcoming and more comfortable for everyone. Aside from the benefits of people getting fresh air and exercise, dog parks also enable socialization and connection among pet owners. While location is an important consideration for park planners, dog park users are typically willing to drive out of their way to both exercise their dog and meet up with other park regulars. Something as simple as 6′ benches, that have room for two people to sit comfortably, can lead to conversations.

For safety of the dogs, it is important that any dog park area maintains a level of integrity with the enforcement of picking up pet waste, trash and other items that are not safe for dogs. Another way to promote socialization is to offer special programming or events. One event for a new park opening, if the park has agility equipment, is to bring in an agility trainer. They can show park users how to safely enjoy the equipment and offer tips on dog handling. This also helps to provide a visual for people who may not be familiar with dog agility. Once they see how much a dog enjoys it, they’re much more likely to try it themselves.

As dog ownership continues to climb among all demographics, including many living in urban areas, urban dog parks are very necessary for the health and well-being of people and their pets in large cities. Living with limited outdoor space, a local dog park is often an important part of getting daily exercise and socialization. Depending on available space, budgets, landscape features and community desires, a little imagination can go a long way.

ParknPool | Lexington, VA | sales@parknpool.com | 877.777.3700

Safety Tips for Playing Outside in the Winter Months

Winter weather provides a frosty world of endless possibilities for kids. They can construct forts, sled over ice ramps, skate on a frozen patch of water in the backyard and pretend they are Eskimos foraging for their food. The melted snow freezes on their pants while their faces, legs and hands turn an uncomfortable shade of pink. Nonetheless, they still want to play outside despite the weather conditions. So what can we do to protect them when playing in bad weather?

Snow, believe it or not, can cause problems on the playground. Although we think of snow as being soft and fluffy, it can pack down to resemble concrete. Snow cover quickly becomes a hard packed surface and at times can be icy.

  • Snowfall may lessen the distance between the bottom of the swing and the ground so that legs swinging back may become caught on the ground instead of swinging clear.
  • Checking the playground surfacing in the winter is just as important as checking it other times of the year. Ice and snow can make the surface very hard.

It isn’t only the snow on the ground that causes concern. Wooden pathways and steps to slides may be slippery. Since it may be impossible to remove all the snow, adult supervision on playgrounds during the winter may need to be increased to help children avoid snow-related accidents.

The material a playground is constructed of can also present problems. Many pieces of equipment are made of metal. Cold is transmitted more easily through metal and increases the risk of a cold injury, such as frostbite. Children should be made aware to not lick or touch the metal objects with their bare hands in cold weather. It is important to dress appropriately for the cold and to limit their time outside when temperatures drop.

Fun Fact: Eating plenty of food before going out can help to sustain body warmth.

It is important to check the playground for any damage it might have sustained during the change of seasons as well as after any occurrence of inclement weather. Following a simple checklist can help you detect problems so injuries can be avoided:

  1. Check for obvious signs of damage or decay, such as loose or broken nuts and bolts or rotting wood in equipment, gates and fences. Check painted surfaces for chipping paint that would need a coat of primer. Check for holes in fences.
  2. Check the swings for proper height and stability; make sure the ropes are properly attached and not frayed. Check the slides to make sure the protective surfaces around them have enough sand or mulch. Be sure to clean off bird droppings.
  3. Check for natural hazards: Fallen tree limbs and branches are obvious, but also make sure there aren’t any damaged limbs that could fall into the playground. Water erosion can expose rocks and other objects that may be hazardous for children, and burrowing animals can leave behind dangerous holes.
  4. Check for human pollution: bottles, cans, and pieces of glass.
  5. Check the sandbox: Make sure it’s clean and free of debris, such as twigs and glass, also make sure it hasn’t been used by cats as a litter box.

We can’t control the weather, but we can take safety precautions to ensure children are safe when playing in the winter months.

ParknPool | Lexington, VA | sales@parknpool.com | 877.777.3700

Staying Warm in Bleachers

ParknPool wants to help you be a little more comfortable and have a little more fun when outside enjoying a sporting event. In combination with the following tips, it is also important to understand the fact that anything warmer than you will add heat to your body. If being cold is going to be a problem and you have the opportunity, don’t pass up a chance to sit in the sun, go inside, sit by a hot fire, or drink some hot chocolate.

Your body is designed to burn food for energy and produces heat from within. So, don’t forget to eat! If your body is getting cold, it will sacrifice your feet and hands to save its life. Ever wonder why your feet and hands are the first to get cold?! Your body loses heat in 5 ways – radiation, convection, conduction, respiration, and evaporation.

  1. Radiation. Just as a wood stove radiates heat into a room, your body radiates heat into the air. The more insulation you put around it, the loss of heat is decreased.
  2. Convection is moving air. Wind blowing through your sweater or around your jacket is heat lost through convection. Windproof outer layers will help prevent heat loss.
  3. Sitting on some cold bleachers at a football game, grabbing a ski pole, or just catching a cold zipper on your neck, are all heat loss by conduction.
  4. Respiration. Every time you breathe, you breathe out warm air. Don’t stop breathing! There’s not a lot you can do to prevent this, just be aware that you are going to lose some heat just by breathing.
  5. Evaporation is a very efficient cooling process.

6 Tips for Staying Warm at a Sporting Event

Check weather conditions before heading outside. Watch your local weekly weather forecast to make it easy to prepare in advance.

Dress appropriately. If you are going to be in the extreme cold, wear as many layers of warm clothing as possible. If it’s mildly cold, try to dress in just a few layers and pack an extra coat or sweater in case the temperature drops.

Be prepared for all conditions. Keep an umbrella, poncho, or warm jacket with you. Have an indoor, heated place to go…you don’t want to be stuck outside if the weather conditions become extreme.

Wear waterproof shoes or boots with a good grip. If your feet are cold and wet, it won’t matter how well the rest of your body is bundled up. You will be miserable!

Wear gloves and/or mittens and long thick socks. These protect your hands and your feet, which are the hardest places to keep warm blood flowing. Try wearing thinner gloves underneath heavier winter gloves for extra warmth.

Pack warm food. Sometimes all you need in chilly conditions is hot food or drink. Carry a thermos with hot drinks, soup or noodles. Warm food and drink will warm you from the inside out and keep your strength up.

ParknPool | Lexington, VA | sales@parknpool.com | 877.777.3700

Preparing Your Outdoor Furniture for Hurricane Season

While we can’t prevent hurricanes, we can prepare for them. That means doing everything you can to keep you, your family and your belongings safe, far ahead of any natural disaster. No matter the size of the storm, you can take steps to reduce the likelihood of your stuff becoming storm debris. It is difficult to prevent buildings from becoming debris, especially during a large storm, but smaller items can be safely stored or secured. After all, no one wants their patio furniture to knock out a neighbor’s window before it ends up swimming with the fish.

As part of your outdoor living area, patio and pool furniture are most susceptible to gusting winds and drenching rains. Large outdoor items such as patio furniture, umbrellas, and trash cans need to be properly stored or secured. All too often, we’ve seen lightweight outdoor furniture become flying projectiles during a hurricane through windows or screen enclosures.

Beyond the common preparation tips here are easy methods to secure your outdoor furniture and accessories, and protect others from flying debris:

  • Outdoor Furniture and heavy items that cannot be brought inside should be secured. Items such as picnic tables and benches, may be turned on their sides or upside down to help prevent it from being caught by the wind. Bungee cords are excellent for holding down heavy items, such as grills and playground sets, and for tying objects together. These objects should be placed close to walls or ideally in an inner corner, to lessen the effects of the wind.
  • Patio Umbrellas and Shade Structures should be closed and removed from the stands and/or patio tables. You don’t want them to become projectiles in high wind conditions.
  • Trash Receptacles can also be secured with bungee cords or chains attached to ground anchors or to wood posts firmly embedded in the ground.
  • Pool Furniture should not be thrown into the pool unless it is a last resort. More common for large hotels, with dozens of chairs and tables, placing the furniture into the pool keeps it from being tossed about in a hurricane. It can cause damage to the furniture or to the pool, so it’s best to be avoided when possible.

Always remember that items can not only get damaged, they can be very destructive to people and property if caught in high winds!

Advanced preparation can protect your property as well as your neighbors, preserve your belongings and lessen the damage caused by storms. Follow the guidelines from your local municipality regarding hurricane preparation and above all be safe.

Our thoughts and prayers go out to your family, friends, home and business during this uncertain time as Hurricane Nicole marches on. May God help you and please know that you have our support.

ParknPool | Lexington, VA | sales@parknpool.com | 877.777.3700

Preparing Outdoor Furniture for Cooler Weather

Fall is the best time to start preparing your commercial grade outdoor furniture for winter storage. Your guests have traveled back home, the pool is being covered and the temperature is beginning to drop.

On sunny days and warm summer nights, your guests enjoy the luxury of your outdoor spaces but as temperatures drop and snow starts to flurry, no one wants to sit outside anymore. What do you do with your outdoor furniture? These maintenance and prepping tips will not only allow you to store your furniture but will also give you a little confidence to pull everything back out on those occasional warm Fall days.

Cushions

Make sure that all cushions and pillows are clean of any stains and spills before placing them in some sort of storage container. If a storage container is not readily available then sturdy outdoor trash bags will help them keep their original vibrant coloring. Once you have scrubbed your cushions be sure they are good and dry before storing them away. If you pack them away still wet, mold and mildew can grow.

Umbrellas

Cleaning an umbrella can be extremely awkward if not done properly, especially if your umbrellas have a one-piece pole. These may take a few people to thoroughly and properly clean. A two-piece poled umbrella can be a little less cumbersome. Start by taking the pole apart then place the top of the umbrella into the umbrella base to make it a little easier to reach. Crank or pull the umbrella open and wash the fabric with a dish detergent and water mixture. If you have a vinyl-topped umbrella, a cleaner made for convertible car tops works efficiently. Allow the umbrella to fully dry open in the sun for a couple of days before packing it away. Putting an umbrella away still damp is sending a welcoming message to mold and mildew.

Furniture

Best case scenario you have a storage building or space where your pool furniture can be stored during the winter months, this will allow a longer lifespan if leaves and snow are unable to pile on top of everything. All of your furniture deserves a good cleaning and scrubbing before being packed away for a few months until the sunshine and warm weather returns. Most of ParknPool’s commercial grade furniture can be scrubbed with a common household cleaner (including bleacher based cleaners).

For more information and in-depth cleaning instructions based on your type of furniture, give us a call at 877.777.3700.

ParknPool | Lexington, VA | sales@parknpool.com | 877.777.3700

Your Complete Guide to Bleacher Safety

Basic Safety Guidelines

Over 20,000 people are hurt annually in accidents involving bleachers! Many of these injuries involve children. A large percentage are a result of a person falling from, or through, bleachers to the ground.

Falls from bleachers typically occur when guardrails are missing from the back or sides of bleachers but can also ensue when there are openings between seating and footboards that are big enough to allow a person through. The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has developed guidelines to prevent these falls.

Many bleachers in facilities today pose a fall hazard, especially to children, due to the fact that these bleachers may have been build and installed when building codes did not require guardrails and allowed openings that were big enough for a child to fit through. To prevent falls, it is recommended that guardrails and openings meet the following recommendations:

  • A bleacher should have a guardrail along the back, and surrounding the open ends, where the drop is more than 30″ to the ground below.
  • The guardrail should be at least 42″ high and, if using a vertical picket guardrail, all openings should be small enough that a 4″ sphere cannot fit through.
  • If chain link fencing is used, it is recommended using chain link that has a 1.25″ (or less) mesh to discourage kids from climbing.
  • Where visibility would not be significantly impaired, use solid materials to block openings.

Types of Bleachers

Bleachers are used by spectators to comfortably view sporting events, graduations, races, parades and many other activities. They are structures that provide tiered seating and come in a variety of configurations and sizes.

ParknPool offers numerous bleacher options that fall into three categories (pictured respectively): permanent/stationary, portable/towable, and temporary (generally known as Tip N’ Roll). Permanent bleachers are attached to the ground with anchors while portable bleachers are able to be used at multiple locations. Temporary bleachers are usually smaller units that are only used for specific events and can be stored while not in use. The guidelines in this guide, and the ones by the CPSC, apply to these three categories of bleachers.

Retrofitting Existing Bleachers

If retrofitting rather than replacing your existing set of bleachers is more feasible for your budget, the current condition and structure of your bleachers will determine the materials and methods needed to retrofit. It is imperative to ensure that the methods and materials used do not introduce the possibility of new hazards such as bleacher tip-over, bleacher collapse, guardrail collapse, and contact or tripping hazards.

Where practical, features such as aisles, handrails and non-slip surfacing should be incorporated into any retrofit project. Consult with a licensed professional or qualified bleacher firm to learn more about what is important in aiding people to move safely about on bleachers.

Rigid material, such as aluminum, should be used to close any openings between the seating and footboards. Chain link or fencing material can introduce potential trip hazards, allow debris to collect under the seats that is not easy to remove, and encourage children to play or hang on it.

ParknPool and the CPSC recommend that you consult with your local building officials to determine whether a permit is required to make any retrofit changes to your existing bleachers. It is also advisable to check local requirements for such things as aisles and guardrails, ADA, or other conditions. Building codes vary by state, year written and by the group that issues them – International Building Code (IBC), Uniform Building Code (UBC), Standard Building Code (SBC), National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), etc. – so be sure to check with your local building codes.

Guardrails, Handrails & Aisles

Having the appropriate components to aid in the access and egress on, of and around bleacher units is imperative for user safety. Guardrails missing from the backs of bleachers, or open sides can cause injury from falls. Gaps in the guardrail, between the footboard and seat, or at the bottom of the guardrail that are large enough for a person to pass through can also cause injury.

Guardrails should not encourage children to climb on or over them. The easiest way to do this is by choosing bleachers with vertical picket guardrails or make sure the chainlink is less than 1.25″ wide. All the bleachers ParknPool offers are available with vertical picket guardrails. In most cases the fourth row of a set of non-elevated bleachers is taller than 30″ which means that there is a riser plank (pictured below) to stop small children from falling through. This closes the gap between the seat and foot boards.

Aisles, handrails and non-skid surfacing are key factors in allowing people to safely move around on bleachers. Many older bleachers do not have these features but can be retrofitted to make existing bleachers safe.

Maintenance & Inspections

Whether you choose to retrofit your current bleachers or order replacement ones, they should be carefully inspected at least once a quarter to identify any damage to the structure or disrepair that could result in injury or death. Problems identified should be corrected immediately. Any inspections or maintenance should be completed by a trained individual, and any action taken should be documented. In addition to the quarterly inspections, the CSPC recommends that a licensed professional engineer or person qualified to provide bleacher products and services should inspect the bleachers at least once every two years. At that time, a written certification will be issued that the bleachers are fit for use.

It is crucial to follow the CPSC’s guidelines to ensure the highest safety. It is imperative that you deal with an individual who is knowledgeable and equipped to answer any questions, as well as provide bleacher seating that meets all of the CPSC’s guidelines.

No one’s safety is worth taking a risk by leaving outdated bleachers in place!

Call ParknPool at 877.777.3700 today and speak to one of our knowledgeable account managers who are waiting to answer all of your questions!

Playground Budgeting Guide

Play is important for child development, but sometimes the funds necessary to provide our children with the playground equipment that is needed to help them grow and learn can be a tough road. Following these simple steps will not only allow you to purchase a new playground unit or replace an existing one, it is also a great way to get your community involved.

Fundraising Ideas

Idea #1: “Adopt” a Part of a Playground

Having a sketch or plan of your potential play area layout will help in your fundraising efforts. It can be used as a great marketing tool. Showing it to sponsors and posting it on message boards will create a visual reminder. Make a list of the major components of the playground unit. Set a price for each component and then break down your fundraising efforts one component at a time. Take your sketch or drawing around to local businesses and community service organizations asking them to “adopt” a part of the playground. You will have to develop a way for the donators to be recognized, whether that is on a single sign placed at the entrance to the play area or at each “adopted” unit. Get kids really excited about the new playground that will be placed at their school, neighborhood or community. The more they talk about the new playground, the more help you will get in your fundraising efforts!

Idea #2: Personalized Walkway Bricks

Parents love to put their child’s name on something permanent. If you are planning on placing a bricked walkway leading to your new playground, have a fundraiser selling these bricks individually to parents, grandparents, guardians and family members. When pricing your bricks, be sure to account for the cost of laying them, and also having each of them engraved. Not only is this a great way to raise money but it also makes your playground a more personalized place to visit.

Idea #3: Penny/Coin Drive

A coin drive is a collection of coins from those in your community, neighborhood or school to help raise funds for your new playground. Have a central location for those involved to place their coins, or if raising money for a school, place large jars or jugs in each classroom. Be sure to announce your coin drive any way you can and watch the change come rolling in!

Most importantly, once you’ve established your fundraising efforts, don’t be afraid to ask for help. Whatever you choose to do as a fundraiser, remember to invite your local paper or news channel. A little press coverage will go a long way!

How to Budget

Once you have your funds in place, it’s time to start budgeting! Having a budget in place will help you prepare for any unexpected costs and offers a clear picture of the project. To create your playground budget, it is important to gather all financial statements available, record income sources, create a list of projected expenses, and document revenue projections. Building a new playground project budget can seem like a huge undertaking but with some careful considerations, you can be prepared for any financial surprises that may creep up along the way.

Project Expenses:

It is important to keep in mind that playground equipment is not the only expense you need to plan for in your budget. Depending on your specific needs, you should also consider these additional costs.

  • Surfacing – there are several types of surfacing options and many may require leveling, drainage of playground site, a means of containment, and a considerable amount of material.
  • Shipping – most playground systems are extremely heavy so you need to take into account the cost of freight, unloading of the components, and any package removal or disposal.
  • Site Preparation – many states, counties and municipalities require the purchase of a building permit when installing a new playground.
  • Storage – this will only apply should your new playground arrive before you have completed the preparation of the site in which your playground will be housed.
  • Installation / Assembly – due to the safety regulations of playgrounds, professional installation is recommended to ensure that your unit meets all safety regulations and is properly inspected.
  • Construction Materials – this may include anything from concrete, bricks, or sand.
  • Landscaping – if your playground will be placed near a highway or other obstruction it is always a good idea to have a wall of protection and a means of containing the children inside the designated play area. Planting bushes, trees or other shrubbery can be a fairly inexpensive way to accomplish this.

Playgrounds!

Thousands of years ago – before school yards were dotted with jungle gyms, slides, money bars and swing sets – Greek philosopher Plato said it perfectly: “Life must be lived as play.”

Playtime is not just for fun; it is crucial to childhood development. ParknPool’s commercial playgrounds and outdoor playground sets are ASTM (American Society for Testing & Materials) rated for public playgrounds, IPEMA (International Equipment Manufacturers Association) Certified, and ISO 14004; 2004 Certified.

These larger playground structures are constructed for children up to age 12 and each unit has specially chosen activities to challenge and encourage the physical, social and mental development of older children. They are perfect for elementary schools, public parks and homeowner’s associations. Kids will be inspired and energized with the ladders, climbers, activity panels and slides that our included in each of our playgrounds!

ParknPool | Lexington, VA | sales@parknpool.com | 877.777.3700

Three Main Types of Bleachers and Their Benefits

Whether you are shopping around for a high school or college stadium, athletic facility, a grandstand, or community venue, there are many styles and features to choose from. Bleacher seating is an important part of events, from Little League games to commencements, to school or work events – spectators need a place to sit at all of these but a one size bleacher does not fit all needs! Though bleachers come in many styles, they are most commonly made from quality aluminum. This is a safe, durable and cost-effective way to meet seating requirements at practically any occasion.

Why is aluminum so popular? The process of anodizing aluminum helps protect the bleacher seat planks from harsh elements, repetitive seating, and delivers a quality finish that’s easy to clean. Anodizing is a process that gives aluminum a protective, corrosion-resistant finish – used on a bleacher’s seating planks and end caps to increase durability and longevity.

ParknPool’s aluminum bleachers are manufactured to withstand years of substantial use and are known for their superior load strength. Each situation is different. Here are some details about the three main styles of bleachers – and the benefits of each:

  • Tip N’ Roll Bleachers

Sometimes permanent bleachers aren’t the right solution and sometimes you don’t need tons of seating to accommodate a stadium-sized crowd. Tip and roll bleachers are smaller, aluminum units for those who want fully portable seating – and need extra flexibility. They are typically offered with no more than four rows of staggered seating and come with built-in wheels.

The wheels (or the “roll” part of “tip and roll”) make this bleacher style not only easily moved from location to location but also ultra-easy to maneuver into the desired position. Set on swivel caster, non-marring wheels for floor protection, the movability of this type of bleacher make the style a great fit for temporary needs, indoors or outdoors, as long as the surface is flat.

Tip and roll bleachers are not only relatively lightweight when in motion but stable and sturdy for years of dependable seating use whenever needed. Ground stabilizers and brakes are included for added stability and safety. These bleachers are great to have on hand because they can be simply rolled in to storage after active use, and safely locked into place with in-built brakes until next time!

  • Transportable Bleachers

On some occasions, you need to transform a field into a viewing area for a special event. Other times, the expected crowd size is larger than the seating capacity of your permanent units. During times like these, movable bleachers are a great solution. These units can be put to use on-demand, moved from field to field, set up when overflow seating is required, then be broken down and taken away so your space can be returned to as it was pre-event.

Transportable bleachers are easy to set up and are a good match for those looking to meet a seating crunch since they can be placed alongside existing permanent structures. They can be used in multiple ways and repositioned to ensure unobstructed sightlines or special configurations when desired. The ability to be moved with a riding lawn mower or tractor, transportable bleachers are not intended to be transported on the highway. They are ideal for city park departments with multiple sports fields.

  • Elevated Bleachers

If you are needing permanent, long-term seating for big, anticipated crowds, fixed bleachers are usually the perfect answer! These units, also manufactured from aluminum, are durable and sturdy. In addition, they are built for frequent, high-volume use.

It’s all about safety with elevated bleachers. ParknPool’s elevated bleachers are manufactured to IBC (International Building Code) standards. This, for example, means that a guardrail system must be provided when the back height of the bleachers is 30′ or above. Openings between the seat and footboards can’t allow the passage of a sphere greater than 4″ when footboards are more than 30″ above the ground – this required feature helpfully blocks items from falling through.

There are many other safety specifications when it comes to elevated bleacher units. Let Parknpool help guide you through them!

When evaluating your bleacher project, ask yourself the following questions:

  • What are your specific needs?
  • What are your state or local codes for bleachers?
  • Do you need portable bleachers to seat spectators for a one-time event or permanent bleachers to seat crowds of visitors at an athletic field?

Whatever your needs, ParknPool offers a full range of top-quality, aluminum bleachers that are code compliant. We have a trusted reputation and extensive experience working with all situations. We are competitive with our pricing, provide recommendations based on your requirements and will happily answer any questions you may have!

ParknPool | Lexington, VA | sales@parknpool.com | 877.777.3700