Monday, September 24, 2012

Keep It Local: River Farm

River Farm, the headquarters of the American Horticultural Society, has been on our list of things to do for a while.  But sometimes we don't do that well in the "groomed garden" setting, so we hadn't yet made our visit.  We took advantage of being off of school last week to do so and it was AWESOME.  The children's garden was the most unique we've seen and included several different play settings: a real boat, a small log cabin, a fort built into the ground, a gazebo built over a river bed, and a jungle of plants.  We went there first and spent some time playing in each of the setups, but Kane's insistence on guarding the fort from any and all entry got old quickly.  So we set out to explore the rest of the "farm."

Then we learned that River Farm was actually owned by George Washington (it's not too far from Mount Vernon) and served as his northernmost farm and home to his personal secretary.  Rumor is that the black walnut trees still there were planted by Georgie himself and one of the orange trees was a gift from Thomas Jefferson.  Pretty cool.  We took our time exploring the meadow, which had nicely groomed grass paths, but was still pretty wild.  We chased butterflies and called back at the birdies.  Another little girl shared some giant snail shells she found down by the river and we ventured to find our own, but didn't have any luck.

We made our way back to the children's garden and played a bit longer this time.  Our grumbling tummies eventually called us back to the car and we headed over the nearby Woodrow Wilson bridge to National Harbor for lunch.  Technically no food is allowed on the beach, but we had The Awakening to ourselves (it was threatening rain), so we chanced it.  We were so hungry the food didn't last long.

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