About us, The Bears Story
Once upon a time and happily forever after, there was a family named Bears. Motivated by. . .
• a genuine love of children (all children but especially ours)
• a passion for the outdoors (especially playing outdoors) and
• the sense of pride and accomplishment gained by creating and building the greatest outdoor play products in the universe . . .
. . . The Bears Playground Crew was born. That was over 15 years ago and over the years we have grown and grown. Now, Bears Playground Crew consists of a complete team of outdoor play professionals. Danny and Marcye Bears are participating members on a technical subcommittee for the American Society of Testing and Materials (ASTM). ASTM writes industry standards for hundreds of areas, including playgrounds. So, while we do not write the rule book on playground safety, we certainly do help. In addition, several members of our staff are trained and tested Certified Playground Safety Inspectors (CPSI). We are also members of the International Playground Contractors Association, International Playground Equipment Manufacturers Association (IPEMA) and Global Re-Leaf (an organization that plants trees for ecosystem restoration).
Our mission is simple and focused: "to create fantastic, nature inspired products which enhance children's environments."
Our quest to marry Nature with Play has earned us hundreds, maybe thousands of like-minded customers over the years. I am proud to say that in 2014 our products went all the way from Cairo, Egypt to Hawaii, USA and some 125 other places in between. Thank you customers! Thank you awesome playground crew! Thank you everyone and God Bless.......
We have started a New trail blazing division of our company called "TREE COWBOYS" and we are hoping it brings us even closer to Nature as we bridge the gap between the Attractions and Adventure World and Playgrounds. These are indeed exciting times!
Not long ago, we lived and worked on a big country farm, where the character of the buildings were thoughtfully maintained but the only things that we grew were our beautiful, wonderful children (5 to be exact) and the most incredible playground equipment in the whole Universe. On June 25, 2008 we experienced a terrible misfortune. Five of our buildings, inventory, equipment and pretty much everything, burned to the ground in a terrible fire. By the grace of God, no one was injured and the brave Firefighters, (from the eleven Fire Departments), were able to save our home. That alone is a miracle.
We learned a great deal from the experience. For starters, we have a new appreciation for all of our blessings. Thanks to the kindness and support of friends, neighbors, the community, family, customers and suppliers we were able to get back on our feet in short order. Our new shop is a beautiful 36,000 square foot building. Five loading docks and 14' overhead doors make shipping nationwide a breeze. We are now able to assemble custom orders indoors, before we load up and hit the road for an installation. This helps ensure quality. We now have an entire area dedicated to perfecting full scale, cutting edge, prototypes.
To ensure the best possible service we distribute manufacturer direct to the final customer. That means a quality experience throughout the entire process and the best possible price. You can buy our natural cedar playgrounds at our Sales Office and display yard, online or by phone. Our playgrounds can be shipped to you for installation by others, or preferably we can custom build, deliver and install your playground wherever in the world you want us to.
With our playgrounds, we have created a "hybrid" or balance between the innocent, natural adventure of playing in the forest and the structure and safety required by today’s standards for children’s spaces. We have been building nature inspired playgrounds since long before it was trendy. We have always understood that natural, renewable materials are far greener than powder coated steel and plastics. Our expertise in creating children’s outdoor spaces and experience in log construction is what makes Bears the perfect choice for transforming your existing space or creating a new space into a Bears Natural Playground.
We use natural materials, like our beautiful, whole, round northern white cedar logs with all their natural features. Our cedar logs have a fat end and a skinny end like a tree (instead of a manufactured dowel). They have gorgeous wood grain, checking, knots, crooks, curves, etc. Our bold, strong and built to last architecture beautifies children's spaces, while capturing a child’s imagination. Our nature inspired products and natural materials help stimulate a child’s enthusiasm for nature. In short, our products facilitate learning, create opportunities for exercise, help build social skills and help provide a unique connection to the great outdoors.
“The Process” begins with a phone call or e-mail from you. We then produce a rough concept drawing. There is no cost or obligation for the drawing. They will include information like the size of the areas, itemized costs of the various components and events, shipping and / or delivery and installation cost. Drawings usually undergo revisions as more information becomes available to us, such as space available, budget, ages of the children, and your preferences. The process continues until we've designed the perfect, customized, natural playground for your needs.
Finally the drawing becomes our shop manufacturing and installation blue print. Manufacturing through installation , all processes possible are controlled “in-house” at our facility in the Finger Lakes Region of Upstate New York. Yes that's right, we still believe that great things can be created right here in the USA. We are largely "Manufacture Direct" to keep your costs down, the process streamlined and your overall experience exceptional because it is under our direct control and direction. To get started call or e-mail us today.
Our reputation and web site www.bearsplaygrounds.com has earned us customers from coast to coast and around the world. So whether you are looking for design help, safety surfacing or just the greatest outdoor play products available, the playground crew at Bears is at your service.
We are proud members of: