DayTrip: The Farm at Walnut Creek

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farmatwalnutcreek

This week I’m sharing with you a day trip we took this past Labor Day weekend.  I’m gonna be real honest here . . . I grew up around Amish Country so it became this place my parents would drag me to as a begrudging middle-schooler and a place I opted out of when I was old enough to stay at home by myself.  I wanted to live in the “big city” and I had very little appreciation for the simple life.  (Cut me some slack, I was 13.)

Well, fast forward so many odd years (no one needs to know exactly how many) . . . I spent my single years in a big city (Yo Philly!) and when I moved back to Ohio, I had a new found appreciation for a simpler life, green grass and WIDE open spaces!

Why am I telling you this?  I’m setting the stage to tell you that my expectations for The Farm at Walnut Creek were pretty low.  I’m not sure what I expected – a few animals behind a picket fence, I guess – but what we discovered far exceeded my expectations and I came away totally impressed and having had a really fun day with my family!

I would wholeheartedly make plans for a day trip to Amish country if I were you!  First of all, the grounds of the farm are beautiful . . . and huge!  I was a bad blogger and didn’t photograph every square inch of the place (scratch that, I wasn’t a blogger then, so my family thanks you for the fact that I didn’t push us to heat exhaustion to get every picture!)  Seriously, though, there are a lot of places on the property we didn’t make it to because 1. It was really hot that day and 2. There is just so much!  There is a produce stand, a playground, house tours, and a gift barn that we didn’t see!

What did we do?  We did participate in the main attraction which is a one-hour horse-drawn wagon ride to view many of the 500+ animals that live on the property.  You can also choose to drive your own car around the 2.3 mile loop to view the animals.  There are animals with large horns, so you do so at your own risk!

When you first arrive, you will need to pay at the drive up window or the person standing at the gate.  They do not take credit or debit cards.  You will drive further back into the property to park and then follow signs to the wagon ride.  Make note that the restrooms are in the basement of the main farmhouse, which is close to the parking lot.

When we used the restrooms, that was the most we saw of the house, but there was an amazing store room of canned goods!  Wow!  I was in awe!  A woman was working in the basement kitchen workspace, kneading bread.  This is a fully functioning house and farm and every day they are working to maintain the daily activities of the household and farm.

canning

Before getting on the wagon ride, there were plenty of animals to see, pet and feed around the farm.  Feed is for sale at dispensers around the grounds.

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We went to the farm on Labor Day so it was pretty busy.  There was a wait for the wagon ride, but considering how many people were there, it wasn’t too bad!  There are a lot of horses and wagons in operation.  I believe between 10-15.  As I mentioned, the day we went was pretty hot and they did have bottles of water for sale as we waited.

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On the wagon ride, they provide buckets of pellets to feed the animals as you go.  Some of the animals will come right up to the wagon to eat from your hand and the rest you can toss the food to on the ground.  Some of the animals you will see include kangaroos, zebras, giraffes, elk, deer, pot-bellied pigs, llamas, camels, and many more.

The day we went, I posted a picture on Facebook and my cousin commented with a tip that I didn’t see in time – but she was absolutely right.  You’re lucky because I am graciously going to pass this tip on to you: as you enter the wagon and are facing the back of the horse, sit on the left side of the wagon.  There were more animals on that side, including the giraffes.  (Now don’t go pushing anyone out of the way or anything.  We sat on the right side and still had a great time!)

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llama

giraffe

My youngest son was 14 months old when we went on the wagon ride.  He did get a little restless.  Of course this depends on the kid, but I would imagine kids over age 2 might be better suited for the wagon ride.  When you enter the grounds, you can choose whether or not you want to pay for the wagon ride.  (It’s an additional $3-5 depending on your age, but kids under 2 are free.)  There is a lot to see and do even if you don’t do the wagon ride.

After the wagon ride, we walked through the grounds and gardens, which were beautiful.

grounds

gardens

lemurs

bridge

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After our our day at the farm, we had lunch at Der Dutchman in Walnut Creek, where again, there was a decent line to wait in to be seated, but my kids were entertained by the rocking chairs on the porch!

dinnerchair

The Farm at Walnut Creek has a web page dedicated to area attractions so you can choose from a variety of ways to spend the rest of your day.  The farm is about and hour and 45 minute drive from downtown Columbus.  It could be done in a day or made into a nice weekend trip.  I hope you find time to give this trip a try and enjoy the wide open spaces and beautiful scenery of Amish Country!

longhorn

Know Before You Go:

The Farm at Walnut Creek
4147 County Road 114, Sugarcreek, OH 44681
Phone: 330-893-4200
Hours: Monday – Saturday: 8:30 AM – 1 hour before sunset.
Last wagon ride starts at 5:00 PM
Closed Sunday

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ICYMI: 8 Reasons to Take Your Kids to North Market


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What Should We Do This Weekend? April 15-17, 2016

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It looks like a beautiful weekend ahead!  I hope everyone can get outside and enjoy it! Here are 7 things to do with your kids this weekend:

1. Snoopy!!! at Columbus Children’s Theatre

When: Thursday, April 14 and Friday, April 15, 2016 at 7:30 PM, Friday, April 15, 2016 at 10:00 AM, Saturday, April 16 at 1:00 PM and 3:00 PM
Location: Park Street Theatre, 512 Park Street, Columbus, Ohio 43215
Phone: 614-224-6672 (Call for Tickets)

This musical (recommended for ages 5 and up) is based on the comic strip “PEANUTS” by Charles M. Schulz.  Canine Companions will be in attendance for the April 16th performances with a pre-show demonstration featuring their puppies-in-training!  At the writing of this post, the Sunday show is sold out and the 3:00 PM Saturday show has limited seats available.  Call for more info and tickets.

2. Hike it Baby at Sharon Woods Metro Park

When: Friday, April 15, 2016
Time: 10:00 AM – 11:30 AM
Location: 6911 Cleveland Ave, Westerville, OH 43081
Phone: 614-746-5000

Meet other moms and their toddlers/preschoolers for a kid-paced hike on the Edward S. Thomas (orange) trail!  Meet at the last parking area near Schock Lake and pack a lunch if you’d like to picnic at the playground after the hike!

3. Week of the Young Child Family Day at COSI

When: Saturday, April 16, 2016
Time: 11:00 AM – 3:00PM
Location: 333 West Broad Street, Columbus, OH 43215
Phone: 614-228-COSI

COSI will offer special activities celebrating young children and early education! Free with COSI admission/membership.

4. Buckeye Model Train and Railroad Show at Ohio Expo Center

When: Saturday, April 16, 2016
Time: 9:00 AM – 4:00 PM
Location: Lausche Building, 717 East 17th Avenue, Columbus, OH 43211

Older kids and model train enthusiasts may enjoy Ohio’s largest combination model train and railroad memorabilia show!

5. Fractured Fairytales at Columbus Metropolitan Library, Shepard Branch

When: Saturday, April 16, 2016
Time: 2:00 PM
Location: 790 N. Nelson Road, Columbus, Ohio, 43219
Phone: 614-645-2275

Geared for ages 6-11, this story time features stories and activities involving fairytales with a twist!

6. Spring Warehouse Sale at Junior Library Guild

When: Friday and Saturday, April 15 & 16, 2016
Time: Friday: 12:00 PM – 7:00 PM, Saturday: 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM
Location: 7858 Industrial Pkwy, Plain City OH 43064

Hundreds of titles available for $5/book!  Pictures books are available and kids are welcome at the sale!  Younger children can spin the prize wheel for prizes and teens will enjoy ALA Youth Media Award Winners!  More information including a warehouse map is also available here.

 7. Spring Opening of the Orange Johnson House: Life at the Farm with the Worthington Historical Society

When: Sunday, April 17, 2016
Time: 2:00 PM – 5:00 PM
Location: 956 High Street, Worthington, OH 43085
Phone: 614-885-1247

Visit the Orange Johnson property to celebrate the season opening!  Admission includes face painting, a child-friendly tour of the Orange Johnson House, visual exhibits, and visiting with live animals such as goats, chickens and rabbits.  Kids can build their own log houses with Lincoln Logs, make quilt patterns, try on pioneer outfits and participate in other hands-on activities to learn about life on the Johnson farm!

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ICYMI: 8 Reasons to Take Your Kids to North Market

*Please be aware,  information is gathered from multiple community sources.  Times, dates and locations are subject to change. There may be a fee to participate in a featured activity.  Please call ahead to confirm activities.  Enjoy what you do today!*


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What Should We Do This Weekend? April 8-10, 2016

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So there’s a possibility of snow this weekend.  Big Deal.  We’re from Ohio . . . we’ve got this.  (Right?)  Sigh.  Well, here are 8 things you can do indoors this weekend!  I hope you enjoy the weekend!

1. Family Books and Build at Upper Arlington Main Library – Tremont Road

When: Saturday, April 9, 2016
Time: 10:30 AM – 11:15 AM
Location: 2800 Tremont Rd, Upper Arlington, OH 43221
Phone: 614-486-9621

Story time is followed by hands-on building time with LEGO and Duplo blocks!  Registration is required.  Openings were still available at the time I published this.  See link for more details.

2. Kiddie Konsignment Sale at Grace Polaris Church

When: Saturday, April 9, 2016
Time: 8:00 AM – 3:00 PM (closed from 12:00PM – 1:00 PM, half price sale from 1:00 PM – 3:00 PM)
Location: 8225 Worthington Galena Rd, Westerville, Ohio 43081

Okay, I’ll be honest, I have a vested interest here because I’m selling like a bajillion toddler and baby toys at this sale.  But it’s a good one for baby items and clothes, kids clothes, maternity items, toys, etc.  The half price sale starts at 1:00 PM and there is usually a line, so plan to arrive a little early!

3. Let’s Play Storytime at your local Barnes and Noble Booksellers

When: Saturday, April 9, 2016
Time: 11:00 AM
Location: all local B&N Booksellers

Story time and activities based on the book Let’s Play!

 4. Princess Party at Barnes and Noble Pickerington Location

When: Saturday April 9, 2016
Time: 12:00 PM
Location: 1738 North Hill Road, Pickerington, OH 43147
Phone: 614-751-0927

Event features games, stories and a royal visitor!

5. Food, Fit and Fun Fest at Scioto Darby Elementary School

When: Saturday, April 9, 2016
Time: 11:00 AM
Location: 5380 Scioto Darby Rd, Hilliard, Ohio 43026

This event features free health screenings for children and adults, food trucks and fitness information!  A $5 fun band provides access to lots of fun games for kids including a bounce house, relay races and more!  Proceeds support programs at Scioto Darby Elementary School.

6. Nisonger Sensory Friendly Screening: E.T. The Extra Terrestrial at Gateway Film Center

When: Saturday, April 9, 2016
Time: 11:00 AM
Location: 1550 N High St, Columbus, Ohio 43201

The movie E.T. will be shown in a sensory-friendly manner: lower volume and lights up in order to make the experience more comfortable for those with autism or developmental disabilities.  Tickets are free.

7. Kids Monarch Day at The Crest

When:  Sunday, April 10, 2016
Time: 11:00 AM
Location: 2855 Indianola Ave, Columbus, Ohio 43202
Phone: 614-261-7128

Wild Ones Columbus, OH and Simply Living will be teaching kids about Monarch Butterflies at this free event!  (Geared toward ages 12 and under, but all ages are welcome).  Kids also eat free every Sunday!

8. Concerts for Kids: Fairy Tales in Music at Ohio Theatre

When:  Sunday, April 10, 2016
Time: 3:00 PM
Location: 39 E. State St., Columbus, OH 43215
Tickets available: here

The Columbus Symphony Orchestra presents your favorite fairy tales in music form!  Pre-concert activities including crafts from the Columbus Museum of Art, a sing along, conducting lessons and more start at 2:00 PM.

 

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ICYMI: 3 Parks Within Walking Distance of a Coffee Shop

 

 


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