By Ginger DeShaney

The smiles were ear to ear. The laughter was infectious. There was pure joy at seeing a new tattoo or touching a lobster.

It was the perfect event at just the right time.

Last week’s Playdate at the Beach, sponsored by the South Boston Neighborhood House and Save the Harbor/Save the Bay, featured games, crafts, music, food, and so much fun for all ages. 

“I think it’s great,” said mom Melissa Hankowski. “It’s perfectly planned … It’s low-key. It’s exactly what the kids need.”

South Boston Online stopped by Pleasure Bay for last week’s beach event, the second in a series of four Playdates. The next Playdates are Aug. 19 at the McCormack Bathhouse at Carson Beach and Aug. 26 at Pleasure Bay, across from the Murphy Rink. The Playdates run from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

“It’s nice to see people out and about,” Melissa continued, noting she’ll try to bring her son to the next Playdates.

Brittany Sheehan heard from a friend about the Playdates and decided to check out last week’s event. “It’s awesome,” she said. “[The kids] are having a blast.

“It’s nice to be around people again.”

Kathy Lafferty, executive director of the South Boston Neighborhood House, said prior to COVID-19, the Ollie held Family Fun Nights. This summer, organizers switched it up and created these daytime events.

About 225 people attended the first Playdate at Carson Beach earlier in July. There were likely similar numbers at last week’s event.

“It’s nice to have an event and see groups of people,” Kathy said. “The kids are able to play.”

And play they did. Kids gathered around the games that were set up on the beach. They colored crowns, got tattoos, and participated in a scavenger hunt. Save the Harbor had a touch tank with a lobster and a crab. Water tables, toys, and baskets of balls were all at the disposal of curious kids. 

Echo Kids provided musical entertainment and got the kids and adults involved, including some “Baby Shark” action. Sully’s hot dogs and water were available.

It truly was the perfect event. And the good news is, there are two more Playdates!


You can register when you arrive, or pre-register here: