Monday, March 30, 2015

Review of Red Orchard Park

 photo playpod_zpsjotbld0p.jpgRed Orchard Park is definitely a park you need to visit if you are ever in Shelbyville. It has something for everyone. My daughter loves the barn themed playground. I, personally, love the play pod fitness nature trail. There are several mulched areas around the trail that have fitness equipment for the adults (squat press, rowing machine, elliptical, exercise bike, etc.) and nature themed play structures (bees, spiders, caterpillar, trees) for the children. This is the only time I ever use exercise equipment (maybe I shouldn't tell too many people that), but it's so convenient because I can use it while the kids are playing right next to me. It's also great because the play pods are not only fun, but educational. There are other trail options at the park as well.

Red Orchard has horse back riding trails and a horse ring.

Another thing that separates Red Orchard Park from the others is the Miller Outdoor Education Center. It is open on Saturdays from 10am-2pm and it's FREE (we love free)! My family recently visited one Saturday, and we were amazed at how many hands-on, interactive exhibits they had. My daughters are still pretty young, but this place kept their attention for a long time. We were welcomed by two volunteers who were extremely nice and helpful. They told us about the different rooms and were always easy to find if we had questions. If you have never been, I would highly recommend spending some time there.

Some of the exhibits we really liked were:
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  • Take A Chance- You put your hand through a hole in a wooden box and try to guess what you are feeling. Then lift the top to see if you were right.
  • Making Tracks- There was a long table with sand and the children can use different animal track stamps to make tracks in the sand.
  • Something's Fishy- An exhibit of fish that live in Kentucky waters.
  • Bees- There's a tree trunk with a bee hive in the middle (the bees weren't back on display yet, but they said they would be soon)
  • Aquarium of fish, turtles, and frogs
  • Duck, Duck, Goose- Try to guess the name of the water fowls
  • Pictures/history of the park
  • Bird Nest Display- Many different examples of nests and eggs found in Kentucky
  • The Center also has educational programs throughout the year. You'll have to follow them on Facebook or visit/call to keep up to date on these programs.

 photo 0328151117_zpsew10zhwu.jpgRed Orchard is also home to Michael Kay's Bark Park. There are two separate lots for the dogs to play in. A 2 acre lot for smaller dogs and a 3 acre lot for larger dogs. This does require a yearly permit.

Red Orchard also has a nice barn that they hold events in and rent out for weddings and parties. You can find information on rental fees here. There are several events throughout the year that the park puts on in the barn. They have an annual Bunny Day (April 4), Earth Day Celebration (April 18), and a haunted house in October! Once again, follow them on Facebook to keep up to date on their events! We have a few of their events listed on our Spring Events post.

Pack a picnic, put on your sneakers, and head out for a fun day at the park!

By: Kimberly

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