Junkyard Playground At TELUS Spark Science Centre

Junkyard Playground

A little messy, a little risky and a LOT of fun!


Free play builds strong minds!

Welcome to the Junkyard Playground, where kids can play the way they know best – with lots of fun, endless possibilities and just a teaspoon of risk. The Junkyard Playground celebrates children’s play. It’s a space dedicated to children and created by children themselves – with no adults allowed.

At Junkyard Playground, kids can test the limits of their bodies and imaginations. Kids are free to build stuff, take stuff apart, use real tools, and GET MESSY.

Here, it’s time for kids to take the lead. It might look messy – or maybe a bit risky but this type of play is critical for growing brains. Kids make the decisions about how the Junkyard Playground looks and changes day after day. Think of it as a Spark Kids Clubhouse! While the kids are the experts at play, there will be trained facilitators in the area to help if needed and inspire new adventures.

We ask that adults please wait outside the Junkyard Playground. They can stay close by and watch all the adventures that unfold.


  • Located in the Brainasium Outdoor Park, just past the tunnel.
  • Access to the junkyard Playground is included in general admission or a Spark Membership.
  • The Junkyard Playground is for kids only - No adults allowed.
  • Kids will have access to tools like hammers, shovels and gardening tools (risky play is great for growth).
  • Closed-toed shoes must be worn while in the Junkyard Playground.
  • Imagination is 100% required to enter!

The Junkyard Playground is now open on weekends only!

Fridays and Saturday 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM

Sundays 10:00 AM to 3:00 PM

NOTE: The Junkyard Playground will only be open on weekends (Friday/Saturday/Sunday) until June 30th. July 1, the Junkyard Playground will be fully open for summer, Monday – Sunday. The Junkyard Playground will remain open until September long weekend, September 4.


    • What is free play?

      · Play is PLEASUREABLE. Children must enjoy the activity or it is not play.

      · Play is INTRINSICALLY MOTIVATED. Children engage in play simply for the satisfaction the behaviour itself brings. It has no extrinsically motivated function or goal.

      · Play is PROCESS ORIENTED. When children play, the means are more important than the ends.

      · Play is FREELY CHOSEN. It is spontaneous and voluntary. If a child is pressured, she will likely not think of the activity as play.

      · Play is ACTIVELY ENGAGED. Players must be physically and/or mentally involved in the activity.

      · Play is NON-LITERAL. It involves make-believe.

    • When is the Junkyard Playground open?

      The Junkyard Playground will only be open on weekends (Friday/Saturday/Sunday) from May 19th – June 30th. July 1, the Junkyard Playground will be fully open for summer, Monday – Sunday. The Junkyard Playground will remain open until September long weekend, September 4.

      Junkyard will be closed during extreme weather conditions

    • Are parents allowed in the Junkyard Playground?

      Junkyard Playground is just for kids, but adults can stay close by to watch the adventure unfold. A trained play facilitator will be in the Junkyard Playground to keep the space safe, but more importantly, inspire new types of play.

    • Can I donate supplies?

      Yes! There is a donation bin at Front of House by the front doors of Spark.

    • What tools will children have access to?

      Hammers, shovels, scissors and gardening tools are all options that will be available to children.

    • I’m here as an aide, can I go in with them?

      Yes, this is the exception to the ‘no adults’ rule. Please just try to remain as invisible as possible. Facilitators can share some tips with you for how to do that.

    • What happens if my child gets hurt?

      By allowing your child into the Junkyard Playground you accept risks that exist (and also accept the huge amount of benefit!). If your child does get hurt, we have a First Aid process that will be followed just as it is in the rest of the building.

    • How is this playground safe?

      We do walkthroughs throughout the day to minimize all of the hazards in the Junkyard Playground. Our staff are trained to remove hazards so that kids can play and take risks.

    • Can my toddler go into the Junkyard Playground? Is my child too young?

      If you know what to expect and you think that they will be able to navigate it on their own/with a sibling, then yes!

    • Who is monitoring my kid?

      The role of Play Facilitator is to ensure that all children have the freedom to play without adult intervention. We will be mindful of what is happening in the space, but no one will be “monitoring” any of the children.

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