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Canada Issue 595

The Savvy Five: Sprinklers

Our Fave Sprinklers

Eau what fun! Whether you’re escaping to a cottage, campground or your cousin’s backyard, fun can be had anywhere with our list of essential sprinklers and water slides. 

Buzz Lightyear Rocket Blast Sprinkler by Manley
Good for: Fans of Toy Story, or rockets, or sprinklers (read: any boy or girl aged two and up)
Why It Made the List: Besides the ‘wow’ factor when the Buzz Lightyear rocket shoots up under a stream of water (note that your water pressure needs to be strong for maximum impact), this is one sprinkler that puts kids in command. The flow of water is controlled by an easy-to-grasp throttle that can push water out slow (Sonic!), medium (Supersonic!) or fast (Infinity and Beyond!). After the rocket launches, the large spray of water left behind provides squeal-inducing fun for all. Buzz’s sprinkler requires minimal parental involvement beyond the initial two minute set up—letting you soak in all the fun without having to actually get wet. ($19.99, available at www.canadiantire.ca)

Wigglin Water Sprinkler by BanzaiWigglin Water Sprinkler by Banzai
Good for: Kids aged 3 and up
Why It Made the List: If you can picture a 12-foot long, brightly coloured, bendable plastic tube that was clearly inspired by a rollercoaster, with 15 spinning foam antennae sticking off the top of it (which swirl and spray water unpredictably in different directions), you know why this sprinkler will be a hit with kids who aren’t afraid of getting wet and wild. The soft, plastic body can be shaped any way—offering lots of creativity—and the speed and force of spray can be easily controlled through water pressure. It’s a sprinkler that works for both the youngest and oldest within its suggested age range of three to seven years. Who needs a theme park when you can create your own backyard mindbender at home? ($9.97 at www.toyrus.ca)

Rainbow Ring Play Centre by IntexRainbow Ring Play Centre by Intex
Good for: Ages 1 to 3 ½
Why It Made the List: We all know how hard it can be to entertain an 18 month-old and a 3 year-old at the same time. This inflatable play centre—two wading pools, a slide, a ring toss game and a lively rainbow sprinkler—keeps everyone happy. Note: unless you have lungs like Superman, an electric pump to blow it up is strongly recommended. It may be the best $40 you spend all summer. ($39.93, available at amazon.ca)

Slip 'N Slide Wave Rider with Slide Boogie by WHAM-OSlip ‘N Slide Wave Rider with Slide Boogie by WHAM-O
Good for: Kids aged 5 to 10
Why It Made the List: When it’s time to graduate to the sprinkler big leagues, it’s time for the slip ‘n slides. A more adventurous and physical experience for school-aged kids, this Wave Rider has the added bonus of an inflatable ‘boogie board’, allowing them to run, jump and slide on the board into a pool of water. After all, what’s more fun than a surf on (natural) turf? ($7.48, available at www.chaptersindigo.ca and major retailers)

Verdigris Impulse Sprinkler from YardworksVerdigris Impulse Sprinkler from Yardworks
Good for: Kids of all ages
Why It Made the List: We love the imagination that the classic sprinklers inspire. The impulse sprinkler allows you to adjust the arc and distance of the sprinkler and can go from 10º to 360º—which means you’ve got lots of fun game options. For musical sprinkler, bring out some summer tunes and get the kids to dance around the sprinkler—when the music stops, everyone freezes and turn on the sprinker for squeals of delight! Adjust the setting to the lower degree range, and play Red Rover with the kids having to run through the spray to the other side. Adjust the arc level so kids have to duck under or jump over the spray. The possibilities are endless: only creativity is required. ($27.99, available at www.canadiantire.ca)

With these SavvyFive picks, you’re sure to sprinkle tons of lasting fun into those hot summer days.

Tested by Alison R., Toronto
Tagged under kids, summer, outdoor, garden
First published 2010.07.13