Updated 10/6-A quick reminder that Sunday, October 9th, is your once-a-year chance to get a free tour of the Pioneer Farm Museum in Eatonville. If you’ve never been, or you haven’t gone since a field trip way back when, it’s definitely worth a visit! Note that I’ve described one of their regular tours below, and I’m not sure about the details of the free event. I have a link at the bottom of the post so you can check it out!
We went in the fall and took the Pioneer Farm tour with some deal site vouchers (NLA). Now, laugh with me-I waited until the absolute last day to use them (my hubby will tell you this happens a lot), which is why we’re wearing parkas in these pics. It was wet and cold and sort of dark, but we still had fun. Hey, it addeed to the roughing it experience!
After you check in at the trading post (gift shop alert), you’re invited to check out the old school house. You then get a guided tour of the various buildings, with time to try your hard at chores like grinding corn, washing the clothes, and spinning wool. You definitely get a sense of how much work went into everyday life for our ancestors. I was impressed with the variety of hands-on things there were for the kids to try, and both the boys really got a kick out of doing them.
The second part of the tour includes a chance to meet animals, and then you’re given time on your own to explore. Henry loved getting to milk a cow and ride a horse, but both the boys’ favorite thing was jumping from the hay loft. Seriously, someone should open a hay loft business because my kids could jump in hay all day long! Now, we were also invited to try our hand in the woodworking and blacksmith shops. I think my eyes just about popped out of my head at this point, because I really couldn’t believe they were going to invite the kids to play with saws and hot metal. Yes, they give a safety speech, but Still! Anyway, the boys did some sawing and hammering under careful supervision, but we left the blacksmithing to my husband. The other families on the tour steered well clear of both these areas. Just be warned that not all the activities are going to be suitable for little ones! There are plenty of other things for them to explore.
Admission is 9.00 for adults and 8.00 for kids. While not a total bargain, I do think it’s worth it, and you don’t have to pay for anything else unless you pick up something from the gift shop. The tour is about an hour and a half. To make it a proper daycation, I’d suggest packing a picnic to eat before or after. My memory is that the bathroom was adequate but not great, so bring some hand sanitizer.
If you’re on a tight budget, you can also wait for Founder’s Day when they offer free tours and other fun.
You can get more information about the museum and their tour options here at their website. You’ll want to check out the, “Tours and prices,” tab for the most detailed info. Here is info. on the free Founder’s Day event. It sounds like you get the whole tour! There is also info. for homeschoolers on the same page.