Prairie Ridge Ecostation

If you love nature this is the perfect place for you. Although, I’m not the nature type I wanted to check out their animal story time. My kids love animals! Well, we missed it. It started at 10:30, and that’s about the time I pulled in the parking area. Reason being, it was a LONG walk to get to the story time area and I didn’t have a jogger stroller because that path was rough; we missed it.  Now that I think about it, Im not sure if a jogger stroller would have helped, because a few parents had jogger stroller’s and were struggling thru the path with me. Its not very stroller friendly in my opinion.

Ok, back to the adventure…when we arrived they were lining up for the nature walk. So, I jumped in line with no idea what I was in for besides walking. I should have known it wasn’t a good idea because I was greeted by a big long black snake just laying out by the tree.  Our tour guide gave us information about the snake, and off we went on one of my least favorite walks of my life. It was super hot, which made it longer and my kids asking “are we there yet” five hundred times didn’t help. I kept falling off the beaten path dodging ant hills. It was so nice of the staff to mark ant areas with a flag. We walked, and walked, and walked I just knew we were going to see an amazing animal. After all that walking, we meet up with drum roll please a BUFFALO!!!! Wait, not what you’re thinking; I mean a piece of art work– a wire sculpture of a buffalo. Needless to say my kids enjoyed playing with the buffalo horn they were passing around. But I couldn’t enjoy myself for I knew what that trail had in store for me.

After that, we headed to the nature play space. It has to be one of the most creative play areas for the kids. They have an otter slide, groundhog tunnel, woodland hut, mini-prairie maze, and areas for art, digging, and water play. Their website states “children can climb over logs and boulders, roll in the grass, make mud pies, observe nature, and dig for fossils”. My kids tried every activity they had but, nothing can top the water area. I promise your kids will get soaked. I remember on the trail a little girl had on a bathing suit, and in my mind I was thinking that’s interesting she must have other plans after this. But, the joke was on me my kids got so soaked at the water stations I had to place their clothes on the hood of my car to dry while we watched a movie and ate lunch in my car. Sad thing is, I had an appointment right afterwards. Thank goodness I had a change of clothes in my car, but they were from last season so they had on long sleeves on a 90 degree day. Can we say HOT MESS physically and literally.

Now looking back on our adventure we probably wouldn’t go back. But, that’s only because I met up with the snake again on our way to the bathroom. One of the staff members informed me that the snake just hangs around and if he gets thirsty he’ll make his way to the nature play space for a drink of water. Momma don’t do snakes. If they never said anything about that we would probably go back because the nature play space is one of the most unique shaded parks we’ve visited. I would just leave my stroller because it was so cumbersome.

 

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