Carriage Hill Metropark
Cost: Free (plus some change to purchase candy at the general store)
Time: 2+ hours
This park has various elements that make it lovable, including a recreated 1800’s farm, an old fashioned general store, hiking trails, and picnic area by a lake. My boys’ favorite part is the general store where you can buy “penny” candy. They bring their own nickels and love browsing the jars of candy and ordering a piece at a time.
The farm is lovely and transports you back to pioneer days. Visit the old farmhouse and various barns where you’ll find park employees dressed in authentic pioneer clothing and participating in traditional pioneer activities. You can visit with the farm animals and, on certain days, go on a horseback ride. Carriage Hill also often hosts events on the farm, including Family Chores where the whole family can participate in real farm chores.
Finally, don’t forget to bring a picnic. There is a really great picnicking area by the lake (don’t go to the first picnic area which is directly across from the farm but keep driving down the road to the second picnic area on the left).