Squeeze in one last summer day trip

2013-08-25T00:00:00Z Squeeze in one last summer day tripCarrie Steinweg Times Columnist nwitimes.com
August 25, 2013 12:00 am  • 

Although there are still a few weeks left until summer is officially over, it speeds up the end of the lazy days when kids are heading back to school the third week of August.

So, as we are easing back into the school routine and there are still some pleasant days ahead as far as the weather goes, I have a couple of suggestions for day trips that I did with my family over the summer to enjoy before the leaves are falling from the trees and we are pulling out our parkas.

Pig Adventure at Fair Oaks Farms

A new exhibit is now open at Fair Oaks Farms. If you have been there to see the cows and play on the grounds, you’ll want to head back and revisit to see the new pig section that opened in July.

First you board a bus, which runs on gas from pig manure, and you head over to the facility where you learn about the gestational period of piglets and how they grow after birth and how they compare in size to other animals. I don’t want to give away too much, but you learn about how important cleanliness is to pig production, methods used to keep the pigs most comfortable and you’ll likely see some piglets born during your visit. Through touch screen technology you can click on a certain area of the facility and get information on a specific pig, including the date it was born and how many pounds it eats per day.

A new baby pig is brought out for viewing from behind glass where you’re able to ask questions about it. Visitors can weigh in on naming it, too. Our group came up with the first name of Billy Bob, middle name of Frank and last name of Einstein for our little piglet.

While it’s an exhibit that can viewed year round, if you get there in the coming weeks, you can still enjoy some outdoor fun on the Dairy Air inflatable, rock climbing wall, tractor tire sandbox, train ride and more.

Don’t forget to stop at the store and café to try some cheese and ice cream. For more information, go to fofarms.com.

Indiana Beach

We made a trip to Monticello last month to visit Indiana Beach Amusement Resort. I was a teenager the last time I was there. I was surprised to see that not a whole lot had changed, but I mean that in a good way. There’s a nostalgic charm to the place that I love that you don’t find in a lot of mega amusement parks. There are a lot of newer features, but they didn’t take out the old, classic rides and attractions to make way for them.

I took my boys on rides that I remembered going on as a teen. They fed the carp that I remember feeding when I was there. The shops and food venues take you back a bit with the décor and signage. I liked that there were a lot of air conditioned places to pop into to cool off. I love that everything runs along the lake in pretty much a straight line and there aren’t hidden winding entrances to rides that you have to hunt for.

I went on my favorite rides, the Giant Gondola Ride and the Skyride several times and also had a nice time on the Shafer Queen. The short boat ride was included with our wristbands. My boys went on their favorite, the Dodg-Em Bumper Cars, over and over and over. We were there for 11 hours and I would say we spent a total of six hours at that ride. I loved the music that played at the bumper cars with nothing older than about 1988. It made me feel just like I did when I visited back in high school.

There’s not much time left to enjoy Indiana Beach. Go to indianabeach.com for remaining dates and hours for the season.

The opinions are solely those of the writer. She can be reached at csteinw@yahoo.com.

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