Our City Online


New Modern Play Space Firefly Play Café Opens

 Kristin Marks
Decrease Font Size Increase Font Size Text Size Print This Page

Firefly Play Café opened its doors today and it couldn’t have been too soon for many moms and dads out there. Owners Karen Reider and Chrissy Kilroe have brought a community café designed for caregivers and children to Columbus. This is the first of its kind in Central Ohio.

“I was in LA with my kids and went to a modern play space where moms were having conversations with their friends and drinking coffee. Their kids just played! I thought Columbus needs a place like this,” said Karen.

Karen and Chrissy have designed a modern community-focused play space where kids can run, ride on scooters, bounce, pretend play, and climb all while mom or dad has a cup of joe and catches up with friends or email. Offering Café Brioso coffee, free wifi, and entertainment for the kids, Firefly Play Café is sure to be a hit among the parent crowd.

Located on High Street in Beechwold, the organic space was designed ‘with a conscience’. All materials used are environmentally friendly and the toys were chosen with children’s safety and desire for fun in mind. Lots of windows and light colored walls make the space happy, bright, and comfortable. The café has a playhouse, a play gym, toys, little scooters, and even a bounce house enticing children to play as soon as they walk in the door. Karen mentioned they purposely kept toys to a minimum because “we want kids to use their imaginations by offering a space with low stimulation.” There is plenty of seating for adults and a bar that serves coffee, tea, and snacks for kids (sometimes even the most organized mom forgets the snacks). Also, take advantage of the warm months in Ohio by hanging out on their charming back patio filled with plants and comfy chairs.

Firefly Play Café is located at 4822 N. High Street and will be open Monday through Friday 9:30 a.m. – 5:30 p.m and Saturday 9:00 a.m. – 1p.m. for playtime. The cost for all day play is $5 for the first child 2 and up, and $3 for each additional sibling 2 and up. Details for 3 month, 6 month, and one year memberships are in the works. Saturday afternoons and Sundays Firefly Play Café will be available for booking private birthday parties and during the evenings for meetings for groups such as non-profit organizations. Parking is easy – there is a lot behind the building and plenty of off-street parking. There is even a bus stop directly in front (Morse and High).

Firefly Play Café plans to display artwork from local artists and host touring authors. Karen and Chrissy intend for the café to be a place where the local community can gather and for caregivers with playful children to feel welcome and relaxed. For more information check out the website at www.fireflyplaycafe.com, follow them on Facebook, or call 614-230-2375.

Kristin Marks is a Columbus Underground contributor, and can be found blogging about kid-friendly activities in Central Ohio over at cbusmom.com. She can be reached at [email protected].

Store photos courtesy of Levi and Caleb Ely of Ely Brothers Photography, kid photos courtesy of Heidi Card.

Print Friendly


  • Very cool! Will have to stop by and check this place out sometime. :D

  • enigmama

    We went this morning and the kids had a blast! Love the concept and love that it’s in my neighborhood!

  • I am SO excited about this!!! Can’t wait to check it out!!!

  • Olivia and I beat the heat this afternoon and she is currently passed out on the couch. please take that as a testament to how much fun was had!
    The owner was attentive and the playground was interactive and stimulating. We hope to make it a weekly affair.

  • peaches_la_rue

    WOW! This article Rocks…I cannot wait to check this place out…!

  • I had a customer in with her kids right after I read this and I was excited to tell her about it.

  • Roland

    Love the concept. Can’t wait to check the place out. Can I ride one of the scooters???

  • I saw several of age individuals riding scooters with much glee

  • Lakee911

    Isn’t there also, for lack of a better term, an on-the-fly daycare? It’s a place where if you have an emergency, have no babysitter and don’t regularly go to a daycare. What is and where is that place?

  • sugarplumclarey

    Wow, this is sweet! Hope I get to go once before we skip town!! Does anyone know what the place in LA is called? That’s where we’re headed and I want to check it out too!

  • lochnessangie

    A Mouton for children.

    …both are stupid.

  • cbusmom

    Hey Lakee911 – I think this is the place: Mango’s Place http://www.mangosplace.com/

  • yes, mango’s place.  we have used for things like that and it was nice.
    can’t wait to try this other one out.

  • jodisegal

    Sounds great!  Any chance you will extend the weekend hours for parents who work and are looking for weekend activities?  Anybody else know of weekend activities to do with toddlers?

  • shepardess

    The Audubon Center on the Whittier Penisula has kids’ activites every Saturday and Sunday at 11:00 for free.   Or go there any time for a new awesome playground, (& climbing wall for those with their own expertise and equipment.)
    Just head west on Whittier from S. High or Front St. and go till you can’t go anymore.

  • BeechwoldHomeOwner

    “off-street parking” — This place has been a menace to the surrounding neighborhoods. Two times now I have not been able to easily get out of my own driveway because of the parents visiting this center. Please be courteous to the surrounding homes and do not block driveways with your cars. I came home one day and literally had to go around the block and enter my driveway from the other direction because there was a car parked opposite the driveway, and two parked literally within inches of the beginning of the driveway. This location has added to the off-street parking issues the neighboring doctor’s office and bus stop bring.

    Sorry, I mean no harm, but this is the wrong community, area for this location. I hope it doesn’t last. Why didn’t you rent out the old Cord Camera building? It is much larger and has TONS of parking.

  • DV

    My wife and I took our son to Fire Fly for the first time around 2:00 in the afternoon on Saturday. Everything was going fine, although much of the “homemade” play center is of poor construction and unsafe, when the owner approached us and told us that they closed at 1:00 and this was a private party. Then, just walked away with no apology or explanation, as if we (the customers) were intruding. If these nitwits aren’t competent enough to post their hours on the door and put up a sign when they are having a private party, then I certainly wouldn’t trust their judgement when it comes to the safety of a child. We were humiliated and certainly will never return.

dining categories