Keeping the Kids Cool This Summer

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When I was a little boy, some of my best memories were of a toy called the Wham-O “Fun Fountain.” My neighbor and I would play with this thing for hours, not just to get wet, but also to calculate how high we could get the hat, how much angle we could put on the clown and keep the hat in the air, etc. OK, we were trying to stay cool, but the idea of a very simple method to get wet and stay cool still works today.

One day I was on the way home with my children from summer camp and I noticed some kids playing on a trampoline down the street. What made it “cool” was they had a sprinkler next to the trampoline and part of the time, it was sprinkling on them. This is great for my kids as it incorporates the two activities they like best, the trampoline and getting wet.

Children with Nerf Swords in trampolene under sprayChildren with Nerf Swords in trampolene under spray

Image by Dana Bostic

Trying to be a GeekDad, I thought I would try and improve on this a little. First, our trampoline has (and will always have) a safety net around it, so I needed the water to come from the top instead of the side or the water would be too dispersed. Next, my kids love … to modify … anything that I construct for them to play with, so I needed this to be where they really could not touch it too easily. Lastly, I wanted a way for the children to enjoy the cooling of the water and not be running from it or otherwise “pelted” by a blasting jet.

What we ended up with is shown to the left. A 13 foot ladder with a sprayer plastic tie wrapped securly to the top. The water on “shower” seems to be just about right. We threw in their Nerf swords at the time (yes, she did beat them up with the swords). This picture is over three years old but my children still ask for the “sprayer over the trampoline” every summer.

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