The KEENZ Stroller Wagon (7S)
or There and Back Again:
Is the striking 7S the next must-have... or just another ephemeral piece of baby gear?
Find them at www.KEENZ.us
The Keenz 7S stroller wagon (“stragon?”) is not at all like the Radio Flyer that won’t fit in our car. Light and agile, it scrunches up into a surprisingly small fold and will then roll like a suitcase.
There is a stationary, optional canopy zippered with mesh. Both long sides of the canopy have full curtains rolled and concealed at the edge, which can be used for shade or privacy. The material is tough backpack-type polyester. Best of all, instead of serious shoulder pain after a few hours of hauling a wagon behind, the Keenz has an adjustable height handle at each end. Push down the streets, and pull through the beach sand. Oh, the physics of it all.
It’s a wagon – meant for young kids over 12 months… but in reality, used by everyone. With unofficial capacity to hold whatever one dares to pile in ( up to the 110 lb. weight limit) rather than two little seats that cannot easily be shared, there is room for creativity. Some parents use it for special needs children who don’t want the “baby stroller” stigma. Closely-monitored infants can nap and play in it like a mini Pack N Play. Parents fleeing Hurricane Irma said that their youngsters were happy to sleep in a familiar, happy spot while evacuated. Pet parents push their frosty faced canines who can no longer hike on their own.
It’s a stroller – JPMA certified and thus allowed on planes and in theme parks like Disney, with two 5-point harnesses. The impressive push is said to be comparable to a City Select. At $360 MSRP (but there are plenty of sales), this luxurious ride falls short of the investment required for many double strollers and most triples. It really does have a premium feel: from the embossed handle cover to the superb handling.
Ultimately, its value also lies in its versatility. Unlike the brightly-colored plastic baby gear in our attic, e.g. the jumperoo that was mission critical at 6-9 months and useless since, this stroller wagon will be seen hauling beach gear, sports gear, coolers, and lawn chairs for the forseeable future. Are you going to put beach chairs in a Double BOB five years from now? No. It will be taking up space in your garage or gone for a fraction of what you paid.
Anyway, Keenz very generously sent a 7S for review, and I gleefully and resolutely drove or dragged it through everything.... in the name of science! Fully loaded (seriously at the 110lb. max weight capacity), we glided over uneven sidewalks and popped up stairs. We wove through the skinny aisles in Eight Cousins book store, easily navigated the partially-obstructed walkways of Woods Hole, and managed all but the worst roots of Carvershire at King Richard's Faire. I am impressed.
Playground mulch and our crushed stone driveway would stump my umbrella-style Maclaren but posed no problem for the 7S stroller wagon.
At the beach, the Keenz 7S could certainly handle the three littles plus all gear safely through the parking lot. However, once securely in the sand, the twins got out and walked. There is a reason Keenz beach wheels (a separate purchase) exist: "the baby and the gear" was a more appropriate load in the soft, deep sand of Old Silver and Chappaquoit Beaches with these standard wheels. Fair enough.
The twins are huge for their age (3), and it is a bit of a squeeze to ride side by side (cozy" in real estate terms). When the pinching and fighting starts… it’s close quarters in that Keenz stroller wagon, just like any other stroller. (Graham crackers, toys, and board books usually keep the peace effectively.) It’s nice to know a Baby Jogger glider board can be attached in the future.
Green is the only light color, and it is probably a safer bet to get a darker one: gray, purple, black. My beige interior is holding up surprisingly well. I dumped out the wagon and used a couple baby wipes (which rival duct tape in versatility). Still, I cringe when the kids ask for juice… although polyester more famously shows grease spots. Ideally, this stragon will be rocking a liner soon.
Let me just say – it is cruel for most playgrounds to be completely without bathrooms, and many bathrooms without changing tables. I have changed a thrashing, angry, strong baby at the playground and beach in the bottom of the Keenz. No sand, no sticks, no pine needles... no prying eyes. It was everything I thought it could be. In addition, I have applied the brakes to all wheels, and the Keenz served as a toddler scaffold at the petting zoo.
Lastly, my Keenz 7S stroller wagon arrived with a malfunction by which a front wheel remained locked. It seriously impacted the handling but was easily "fixed" with tape. Keenz offered to send a new axle, two weeks later, or for me to return the 7S for a replacement. I was already in love and could not box up my new ride and say goodbye. Plus, I wanted to see what hassle a paying customer could potentially face. It was easy but still seemed noteworthy.
Hopefully, the possibility of this mechanical issue has since been fixed.
We boldly went where some double and all triple strollers never would have fit, on terrain where other strollers and wagons would falter, enjoyed adventures that would have been an epic fail... or a major inconvenience at the very least. The Keenz 7S is a sharp-looking and valuable asset to any family.
Lauren is a Mainer who moved to the Cape in 2003 with her husband. After starting in Research and Development for a biomedical manufacturer for five years, Lauren is living a very different adventure as a SAHM of four, including twins. It's a very busy mix of feeling grateful and overwhelmed.
Cape Cod Moms