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Best in Backyards Blog

A consumer’s guide to backyard products including Swing Sets, Storage Sheds, Outdoor Rooms, Trampolines, Basketball Systems and much more. Check out our blog for advice and expert opinions to help you create your perfect dream backyard!

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Dana Reed of Reed Boyz BBQ turned in the winning burger at this weekend’s 2016 New York Bull Burger Battle, earning him a trip to the World Food Championships this fall. With his wife Debbie and his twin boys John and James, Dana returned to the Best in Backyards superstore in Mahopac to compete at the Bull Burger Battle for the second year in a row. In 2015, he submitted an Asian turkey burger and came in fourth. This time around, his entry — The Mustang — consisted of smoked cheddar, “fronions,” jalapeño, an English cucumber relish and a pretzel bun. The judges gave the Mustang a score of 96. “My approach this year was to cook more towards the judges,” said Dana, a Montvale, NJ resident. “I went with a well-executed, simpler burger.” As Bull Burger Battle winner, Dana took home a new Bull Steer Grill Cart. His sponsored trip...
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     When it comes to beautifying your home, outdoor rooms are all the rage. Not only do they look elegant and sophisticated to guests and anyone who gets a passing glimpse of your backyard, but they also provide an additional space for entertaining. Plus, outdoor rooms add value to your home. That means another selling point to entice potential buyers if you eventually put your house on the market.       With a number of styles and materials to consider, there is no shortage of beautiful structures to choose from when adding to your backyard. Whether your home is a cape, ranch, colonial, Victorian or modern, finding the perfect outdoor room simply requires a bit of browsing and planning. The options include retractable awnings, which attach to your home and provide a shaded area that you control; gazebos, which you may have seen on your local village green; pavilions, which...
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Mahopac, NY — With more than a dozen handpicked competitors confirmed and a top-notch panel of judges eager to find the winning creation, preparations are nearly complete for the 2016 New York Bull Burger Battle at Best in Backyards. Scheduled for Saturday, June 18, the third annual New York Bull Burger Battle is an official qualifying event for the 2016 World Food Championships. It is the second Bull Burger Battle of 2016, with the first having taken place in Baton Rouge earlier this month and the others slated for Chicago, San Diego and Indianapolis.  Activities for the Mahopac event will begin at about 10:30 a.m., shortly before the first group of competitors fires up their grills. Attendees will have the chance to enter to win a Bel Air Grill, valued at $499, and they will also have the opportunity to sample food cooked on a premier Bull BBQ grill cart. Live radio entertainment will...
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Carmel, NY — Best in Backyards of New York and Connecticut is excited to announce the addition of a revolutionary trampoline to its superstores, Springfree featuring tgoma.  Designed to transform screen time from a stationary, indoor activity to a physical one, the new and improved Springfree trampolines with tgoma combine traditional trampoline fun with interactive digital gaming. Springfree featuring tgoma—which stands for “take gaming outside and make it active”—capitalizes on the intense popularity surrounding devices. A study from Common Sense Media released last year found children in the US spend up to 60 hours each week consuming media, and experts say young people are spending less and less time playing outside. “Instead of fighting technology, it’s about leveraging it to transform ‘screen time’ from an isolating, sedentary activity to a healthful, engaging experience for the entire family,” said Steve Holmes, founder of tgoma.  The first of its kind, this product stays true to the safety-conscious, patented...
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Best in Backyards, the retail division of Eastern Jungle Gym, has donated a cedar swing set to be auctioned off at the upcoming Share the Love gala, a fundraiser for childhood cancer research. The event will take place on Saturday, April 9 at the Regency Hyatt in Greenwich, CT. It is hosted by the Ty Louis Campbell (TLC) Foundation, a non-profit dedicated to raising funds for improved treatment of the most aggressive types of pediatric cancer. More than 200 people from Fairfield County, Westchester County and the surrounding areas will dine and dance the night away from 7 p.m. to 12 a.m. In addition to the auction, there will also be casino tables and an awards ceremony. The Dream cedar swing set will be up for grabs starting with a $1,000 bid. Highlights include a 10-foot wave slide, a rock-climbing wall, a clubhouse with a tent top canopy, sling swings and more. It...
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With the 2016 New York Bull Burger Battle just three months away, Best in Backyards is excited to announce that competitor applications are now being accepted.    Best in Backyards will host the event for the third consecutive year at its Mahopac, New York location on Saturday, June 18. Approximately 15 of the region’s most passionate and dedicated grill masters will go head-to-head as they prepare the burger that could win them a sponsored trip to the World Food Championships, as well as a new BBQ Steer Premium Grill Cart from Bull Outdoor Products. In total, the winning prize package is valued at $3,350.   Both of New York’s former Burger Champions, Joe Saccente and Skip Day, will return for the 2016 competition. Many other familiar faces will be in attendance, too, in addition to some newcomers. Interested parties may submit an application here.   The search for a panel of...
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            Best in Backyards is excited to announce an addition to its trampoline selection just in time for the 2016 spring season. All Best in Backyards superstores will now sell JumpSport Elite Trampolines, which come from the creators of the trampoline safety net.              JumpSport Elite Trampolines feature patented safety systems engineered to increase the jumping surface's shock absorbency, and to ensure a smooth transfer of energy from trampoline to jumper. These products rely on a heavy duty frame, made of 14-gauge steel and backed up by a 10-year warranty. JumpSport Elite Trampolines also provide a soft, deep and high bounce for both children and adults.             "For the past 23 years, our parent company, Eastern Jungle Gym, has gone by the motto 'Creating childhood memories,'" said Rolf Zimmermann, vice president of sales for Best in Backyards and Eastern Jungle Gym. "We're happy to say...
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Posted by on in Swing Sets
     All the best backyard swing sets have a few things in common: high quality materials, top-notch construction and safety features, and exciting activities. Whether you are shopping for a swing set or looking to add on to an existing backyard playground, there is no shortage of add-ons you can look to for a unique, one-of-a-kind playset. The kids will absolutely love you for it!      Here is our list of top swing set add-ons, in no particular order: Monkey Bars: The monkey bars are a classic choice, and often a favorite for kids. Parents like them too because they help the little ones develop upper body strength. Whether you go with traditional monkey bars or the double-wide monkey bars, we recommend they be constructed of steel rungs and a wooden cedar frame. A set of monkey bars takes any backyard swing set from average to awesome in no-time. A...
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Posted by on in Sheds
     For many homeowners, the storage shed is a place to keep garden tools, lawn equipment, recreational items and other objects associated with somewhat warm weather. But a storage shed should be taken advantage of year-round, not just in spring, summer and fall.      Here are some ideas that will help you get the most out of your storage shed during the colder months, too.   Store wood pellets, firewood or coal: Anyone with a wood or coal-burning stove in their house knows how often the fuel needs to be replenished. Instead of trekking out to the edge of the backyard to your stash of firewood, coal or wood pellets, keep a smaller amount nearby in your storage shed. Many people have positioned their storage shed in a place that’s convenient to access from the front door, so having the supplies in the shed means those refill trips are...
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The children at the HONOR shelter in Middletown, New York now have a new playground to keep them busy, thanks in part to Best in Backyards. The cedar swing set, a Dream 1 by Eastern Jungle Gym, was installed at the homeless center just in time for Christmas. It replaces one that was stolen--and later returned destroyed--from the shelter a couple of years ago. "It's always wonderful when we can help make kids happy, and it's even better at this time of year with the holidays,” said Scott Honigsberg, owner of Best in Backyards, the retail division of Eastern Jungle Gym. Best in Backyards provided the playset at a discounted price, with free delivery and installation. “What better way to have helped spread Christmas spirit than giving back." It did not take long for the children to start enjoying their playset. As soon as it was up, the little ones began to play. ...
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           When Daneen Mancuso told her boys, Justin and Matthew, that she had won a new trampoline for them, they were thrilled.             It was just a few months ago that the brothers had to say goodbye to the Little Tykes trampoline they had outgrown. Daneen knew they would love a new trampoline, so she entered the Best in Backyards giveaway, hosted by Wee Westchester. The kids had no idea.             "Matthew was ecstatic," Daneen said of her younger son hearing the news. She told the older one when she picked him up from CCD. "He was like, 'No way! No way!' That was his first reaction. Then he asked when it was coming and when they can invite their friends over."             Best in Backyards delivered the 8-foot round trampoline, valued at $1,499, on Saturday, Dec. 19. It was just nine days after Daneen had entered the contest on Dec. 10, the birthday of a...
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     Christmas is less than two weeks away, and if you’re one of those people who tends to wait to the last minute to finish holiday shopping, it’s very likely that you still have a few items to purchase. Not to worry! There’s still plenty of time to get an awesome gift that will surprise and delight your loved one, whether he or she is just a tiny tot or an older family member.        To help you find that something special, here’s the Best in Backyards 2015 Holiday Gift Guide. We promise it has something for everyone in your family. For Your Children: Instead of giving the kids something that will keep them indoors (video games, a tablet, cell phone, etc.), why not go with a more active gift? We have three recommendations here: A solid cedar swing set, a trampoline or a basketball system.  Each of...
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Here at Best in Backyards we are excited to welcome the 2015 holiday season with another fantastic giveaway! We are partnering with the folks over at Wee Westchester for this campaign, and the prize is an 8-foot round Springfree Trampoline. Its retail value is $1,499!   To enter the contest, see this post on Wee Westchester and leave a comment describing how you and the family are bouncing into the holiday season. Hurry and enter to win before the contest comes to a close at midnight on Dec. 15, 2015. Plenty of local families have already entered!   Springfree trampolines use composite rods instead of springs for a safer bounce. They also feature hidden frames and SoftEdge mats, which means the kids won’t come in contact with any hard surfaces.    “These trampolines are the safest on the market, so we’re proud to sell them in our stores. Not only are they extremely safe, but...
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Kissimmee, FL — Two of the contestants that competed in the Best in Backyards Bull Burger Battle in June 2015 headed to sunny Florida earlier this month, firing up their grills for the World Food Championships (WFC). Joe Saccente of Mr. Dirt's BBQ — the winning team at the Best in Backyards event in Mahopac, NY — placed 37th at the championships in Kissimmee, FL. David Conti — who came in second over the summer when he and his wife competed as Red Planet BBQ at Best in Backyards — placed 24th. Both Saccente and Conti had also competed at the inaugural Best in Backyards Bull Burger Battle in 2014. Like he did at the Mahopac event, when he turned in a ground beef burger that incorporated salt, pepper, tomato, lettuce and American cheese on a seeded potato roll, Saccente focused on simplicity. He and teammate Chris Prichinello used traditional condiments...
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If there’s one thing little kids get excited about, it’s camping. Sleeping outside, sitting around the camp fire and playing with friends … what could be better? If your youngster absolutely loves camping, there is no reason why he or she has to wait until the annual family trip rolls around, especially since there are still some warm fall days ahead. Instead, mom and dad can set up a campout right at home, in the backyard, complete with plenty of fun activities.   Whether the little ones will sleep in their treehouse swing set, on the deck under the retractable awning, in the gazebo or in an old-fashioned tent, they are guaranteed to make great memories during a backyard campout. Set them up with sleeping bags and pillows, and stick around to supervise and lead them in games.    Not a fan of sleeping outdoors? You can always have a pretend...
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An outdoor kitchen island adds beauty and elegance to your backyard, while giving you additional space for family and friends to gather. It even adds to the value of your property. Given the investment you're making when you purchase an outdoor kitchen, whether it is pre-built or custom-made, it pays to keep the unit in good shape by properly maintaining it.   We recommend treating your outdoor kitchen island like the additional room it is, even if it is an outdoor space rather than one that exists inside your home. That means regular care and cleaning. Here are some tips to get you started:   ·      Clean the inside of grill after each use. After you've finished preparing the meal, take advantage of the remaining heat! Put brush to grill and scrape away any food that was left during the cooking process. This may seem like an extra chore but...
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While there's lots to be said for being a DIYer who spearheads projects around the house, the benefits of having a professional take care of your home improvement needs is not to be underestimated. When it comes to big changes and backyard designs -- such as building a structure for an outdoor room, installing a trampoline, building a large backyard swing set, etc. -- we always recommend relying on our team of professionals for delivery and installation. Here's why:   Safety is the top priority -- When you're investing a significant amount of money for something the whole family will enjoy, the safety of the product is typically assumed. But that safety is only guaranteed if the item is installed properly. So we advise you leave the installation to the experts, especially if the item is for children (a trampoline, a wooden playset or a basketball hoop system).     The project...
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July 4th is less than a week away, but there's still time to plan a great gathering for your family and friends. We're here to help you get a head start on the menu with eight foods you can easily whip up on the barbecue!   1. Burgers, Hot Dogs and Chicken -- This one is a no-brainer! Nothing says Fourth of July quite like a traditional BBQ with hamburgers, hot dogs and chicken. You can save time by prepping these items beforehand (season the ground beef and mold into patties; make slices or spiral cuts in the hot dogs; let the chicken marinate so the finished product is moist and not dry; etc.) and throwing them on once your guests start to arrive.   2. Pizza -- If you thought pizza was something reserved for take-out, think again! All you need for a delicious pie is dough (you can pick...
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Joe Saccente of Shrub Oak, New York is headed to The World Food Championships after winning the second annual New York Bull Burger Battle at Best in Backyards in Mahopac, New York on June 6, 2015.  Saccente, a returning competitor who came in last place at the first annual Best in Backyards New York Bull Burger Battle, went with a simple burger this year. He called it "The All American Cheeseburger." It incorporated ground beef (80/20), garlic, onion, salt, pepper, tomato, lettuce and American cheese on a seeded potato roll.  A father of two and an iron worker, Saccente was ecstatic to hear the news.  "I can't believe I won," he said, adding that he thought the burger would place somewhere "middle of the road."  With the first-place title comes a Bull Lonestar Grill Cart, valued at $2,300, and a trip for two to Kissimmee, Florida to compete on Team Bull...
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Best in Backyards is excited to reveal a top-notch list of competitors for this year's Northeast Bull Burger Battle, which is taking place on Saturday, June 6, at the Mahopac, New York superstore.   Fourteen grill masters will fire up their BBQs in the hopes of creating the winning burger and earning a spot at the World Food Championships (WFC). They are:   -Craig Bellomo of Wake-n-Bacon Team BBQ (Floral Park, NY) -Tim Bucolo of Crafty 'Cue BBQ (Mount Kisco, NY) -Dave Conti of Red Planet BBQ (Seymour, CT) -Skip Day of Swamp Pit BBQ (Wantagh, NY) -Robert Erickson of Booby-Q (Sicklerville, NJ) -Greg Friedman of Sloppy Seconds Dry Aged Burgers (Mount Kisco, NY) -Dan Herman of Dan's TBD BBQ (Bellmore, NY) -Christopher Holihan of Holihan's Beer Me BBQ (Bellmore, NY) -Rocky Julianelle of Big Rock BBQ (east Haven't, CT) -Joseph Maino of TailgateJoe.com (Staten Island, NY) -Dana Reed of Three...
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  • New Jersey Man Wins Best in Backyards Bull Burger Battle

    Dana Reed of Reed Boyz BBQ turned in the winning burger at this weekend’s 2016 New York Bull Burger Battle, earning him a trip to the World Food Championships this fall. With his wife Debbie and his ...

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    by Ashley Tarr
    Wednesday, 22 June 2016
  • Patio Designs Part 1: Adding an Outdoor Room to Your Backyard

         When it comes to beautifying your home, outdoor rooms are all the rage. Not only do they look elegant and sophisticated to guests and anyone who gets a passing glimpse of your back ...

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    by Ashley Tarr
    Monday, 13 June 2016
  • Competitors, Judges Chosen for 2016 New York Bull Burger Battle

    Mahopac, NY — With more than a dozen handpicked competitors confirmed and a top-notch panel of judges eager to find the winning creation, preparations are nearly complete for the 2016 New York Bu ...

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    by Ashley Tarr
    Tuesday, 31 May 2016
  • New Digital Gaming Trampolines Now Available at Best in Backyards

    Carmel, NY — Best in Backyards of New York and Connecticut is excited to announce the addition of a revolutionary trampoline to its superstores, Springfree featuring tgoma.  Designed to tra ...

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    by Ashley Tarr
    Sunday, 15 May 2016
  • Best in Backyards Donates Swing Set for Upcoming Auction

    Best in Backyards, the retail division of Eastern Jungle Gym, has donated a cedar swing set to be auctioned off at the upcoming Share the Love gala, a fundraiser for childhood cancer researc ...

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    by Ashley Tarr
    Saturday, 02 April 2016
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