This time, we headed out to the Funks Grove Nature Center. It had been a few years since we’d ventured out here, and they have made a lot of improvements since last time!
Part 1: Sugar Grove Nature Center
The nature center was a highlight for Punchy and Bossy. Punchy loved the animals (turtles, snakes, frogs, toads, caterpillars) and Bossy liked to play with the teepee that is set up. There was a big section of nature finds that kids can touch, like antlers, wasp nests, jaw bones with teeth in them, geodes, etc.
They have beautiful and functional hiking sticks – both adult and kid-sized – available for borrowing while on the trails. Punchy and Bossy and their two friends felt Very Official walking around with a walking stick. The assistance also came in handy for J’s friend, who was hiking on her due date with baby en utero. (God bless you, M)
Part 2: Imagination Grove
This is the bee’s knees. Plenty of places for adults to sit and chat while the kids play on the plethora of kid stuff. There’s a zip line, a clubhouse, a climbing treehouse, two sandboxes, a platform treehouse with a pulley system, a stream where one can procure extremely muddy water, a balance beam, and just generally a bunch of dirty stuff to climb around in.
There are tons of bugs to discover, including centipedes, which Punchy calls “recipe bugs” because that’s how he heard “centipede.” We saw a very cool caterpillar that fell out of a tree onto someone’s shoulder. The man very generously donated the caterpillar to Punchy after having his personal space invaded by an EXTREMELY interested three year old.
What did Bossy do while Punchy played with bugs? Carried muddy water in an old muffin tin from the stream to the clubhouse – over and over and over. Can’t complain.
It’s also worth mentioning that we saw two children in wheelchairs enjoying the grove. It’s an accessible, educational place to play.
Part 3: Trails
The trails here are gorgeous. Wide open spaces, trees, and easy walking. There are lots of different trails to choose from, and they are all clearly marked. Bossy and his friend had a great time helping us navigate. The trails are color coded, so they helpfully pointed out all the yellow arrows to us. The yellow trail was 0.6 miles, which was good for everyone except our three year old friend, C, who was very sleepy and needed to be carried by daddy.
We didn’t even explore all that Funks Grove has to offer. We want to go back! Funks Grove gets a 5/5 for experience and a 5/5 for kid friendly.