I would be lying if I said I did not like Virginia. I do miss Chicago and everything that the big city has to offer, including my family, but the history and weather almost make up for it. For example last weekend, that is the week and a half ago since this past week and weekend I have been slammed with sick kiddos, we went to the Harvest Fest. I believe Harvest Fest is an annual event made extra special this year by the 400th anniversary of Henrico County, Va (more on that in a minute).
The Festival was located and the Meadow Farm known for its period farm teachings as well as amazing Crump Park Playground.
Upon entering we started off with a corn maze
And continued with some friendly bother sister competition.
Then to cool off a bit we milked some “cows”
But what really set this Harvest Festival apart from any others was its rich history.
Henrico being the second successful English settlement in the New World in 1611 became of of the eight original shires (countries) made up of 10 current Virginia Counties and three cities. It was named after Henry Fredrick Prince of Wales and son of James I, King of England.
Therefore the fest was as much about fall fun as it was about learning what life in Virginia was like in the XVII Century. Or if you want to put it simply how to do make something out of nothing..
After making candles we learned the technique for blacksmithing and got a whiff of some burning metal
We learned about basketweaving
Wondering about how many baskets can a woman weave in one day
You would tie cut apple pieces on a sting and hang outside to dry so they can be available during winter months
We learned about Sorghum Pressing
Some learning it the hard way
I stayed away from bee keeping knowing well that bees and I do not get along
But stopped to admire the costumes
The fest was exactly what I love, fun, educational and just in case my kids find themselves in the middle of nowhere sometime in their lives well maybe at least they will know how to make a candle.
For more information about 400th anniversary of Henrico click here. Now it is time for me to read some more about Virginia history.
It is fall. Time to think about warmer sweaters, soups, apples and pumpkins. If you live in the Richmond area there are a lot of Pumpkin Patches to choose from:
There is an Ashland Berry Farm in Ashland known for its spooky Haunted Forest, and getting a little bit crowded on weekends.
There is a Chesterfield Berry Farm that offers Strawberry and Pumpkin Fest (same fun offered), which seems to get really expensive.
And there is Boulevard Flower Gardens that is just right.
There are plenty of things to stick your heads into
for funny photos
The Boulevard Flower Gardens is a shop where you can get your holiday decor, funny cups and even coffee and danishes to put in them.
Once you filled yourself with everything that is inside you can come out and see all the fun things the patch has to offer
Inflated Giant Pumpkins
Giant Jumpy Inflatables
Hay ride to the patch
with lots of hay
a real barrel ride
that takes you
around a small lake
Our favorite part was right behind the barrel ride,
Straw filled theater
where you can spend hours covering yourself up with straw
which we did, me secretly praying that neither one of my children will develop hay fever.
After getting straw everywhere all we needed was few hugs and signs of exhaustion from my son to find the solution to our problems
Few steps away were some hungry goats that eagerly ate all the excess straw
Don’t worry we are the ones that gave them the hay, neatly picked from our clothing and hair
After all the excitement it was time for some down time like fun filled sand box, nearby swings and slides
and food filled stand reminding us it is fall after all
so we climbed some more things
Rode few more ponies, my son being very disappointed not to ride a horse, since he was heavily shy of the 6th bday needed
The great thing about Boulevard Flower Gardens is that there are no lines and it was very price conscious.
For $15 you can get a $18 worth of fun of your choosing on however many kids you want to use.
Just in case you can’t read that far here is the price break:
Bounce 2 Slide 3 Barrel Ride 3 Face Paint 1 Goat Feed (unless you pick your straw) 1 Maze 1 Pony Ride 7
The hay ride and hay theater are FREE so come and enjoy the fall while its here.
What happens when you rent six cabins, each with at least one couple and 4 children. Well it depends who you ask.
For me you get a family tradition and a way to enjoy the state parks without roughing it too much.
A way to go for long walks and pick wild flowers.
maybe even walk barefoot
for my daughter it was a perfect way to play with fire and smoke
for others you get memories that start with “remember when we tipped the canoe over” which really happens every year
others would rather not worry about things like this
but where still excited about boats and oars
for my son it was a perfect way to bond with boys, follow them around
maybe even play some football
Learn how to chop wood
Play bocce ball
for the teenage girls it was a perfect way to bond with boys, follow them around.
Maybe even do some fishing
Either way it all ended with fires, guitars and stories
oh yes and lots and lots of pictures