Highlights: Ballardvale Playground is in a well kept, pretty park off of a busy road in Andover. If your kid likes trains, this is their dream come true because Ballardvale Station is right on the other side of the chain link fence, and at certain times of day there are trains going by every few minutes. The parents here when we visited were very friendly, and I saw a lot of babies – the stroller-friendly paved walkway around the play area is a nice feature.
Bummers: The parking lot here is miniscule, so if you don’t get a spot you’re stuck parking on the side of a high-traffic road. Though the play area is set back from the speeding cars a little bit, the fence only extends part of the length of the park. Definitely not a play spot where you can zone out worry-free.
What’s Nearby: Spinner’s Pizza Parlor, Ballardvale Cafe, and Pomp’s Pond are around the corner.
Restrooms: One porta-potty
Seating: Benches along walkway, picnic table at the center, picnic table under the gazebo.
Shade: Under the gazebo, where there are three large picnic tables.
Parking: Tiny paved lot, or street.