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Heather Hays

Owner, The Palm Tree Playground

Cheryl Gerber Photograph

Why did you start the Palm Tree Playground? My filmmaker husband used to take our young family on location to places with inclement weather; indoor playgrounds were a lifesaver.

Do you have children and do they play there? I have two daughters, 4 and 7. They both love playing here. My older daughter likes to “babysit” the toddlers. My 4-year-old likes to hang upside down in the structure and work the cafe cash register.

Surely it’s better for children just to run around outdoors? If we all lived in places with beautiful parks that had clean bathrooms and the weather was wonderful – yes! However, that isn’t reality. We offer an escape from heat and rain. Also any mom will tell you how stressful it can be keeping track of children in an unenclosed park space; we offer an alternative.

Are there any exciting things coming up you want to tell us about? Character playdates with Cinderella and the Ice Queen.

Tell us three things we wouldn’t know about the Playground: We clean the whole facility daily; we have three private birthday party rooms; and the owner works on the new “NCIS: New Orleans.”

Why do you love your job? Being around happy families is very rewarding.

How can you bear the noise all day? A noisy playground is a successful playground!

What qualities do you look for in your staff when you’re hiring? People I would feel comfortable babysitting my own children.

The Palm Tree Playground
3011 North Interstate 10 Service Road E, Metairie

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