I have been on a staycation this week. Jim was attending meetings out of state, Delainey was a school, so I had some free time to work on one of my hobbies...scrapbooking. I don't do fancy scrapbooks. I don't have the time or the energy. I get my pictures in the books with some stickers and journaling. I am lucky that I trim the pictures and make the corners round instead of square. I am really behind, so I spent time catching up on 2009 and 2011. Going through our pictures, I found that we visited one place over and over again...Ft Harrison State Park in Indianapolis.
My family loves going to state parks. The price is always right since we buy a year long pass for $40. For that, we get into all of the state parks in Indiana for free. Most of the parks have hiking paths, picnic areas, and playgrounds, perfect for a day of fun. If you have never been to one of the state parks, you are missing out on loads of fun.
Ft. Harrison has so much to offer. There are some hikes that are paved...good for running, taking a nice easy stroll, biking, or pushing a stroller with little ones. There are some hikes that are a little more challenging, although none are really rough. Each season offers beautiful scenery at the park. We have gone fishing while hiking, waded in streams going through the trails, and cooled off in the shade while walking.
Delainey's favorite thing about Ft Harrison is the pony rides! For $3, she was able to get on a pony and while Jim or I led her, go on a real pony ride. Every time we went, she wanted to ride her favorite pony, Strawberry. Last time we were there, we found out that Strawberry has retired. D was sad that she couldn't see her any more, but so happy that she is enjoying retirement. Last fall, Delainey was finally able to go on her first trail ride at the park. We rode through the park on horses that were so calm and gentle. We enjoyed seeing the park from horseback instead of walking.
There are several playground areas at Ft Harrison. One of the playgrounds has a slide built into a hill...big enough for everyone, not just kids. Delainey makes friends every time we go to the playground. There are rocks to climb, swings to ride, everything a cool playground should have! I met a group of moms at Ft Harrison one day for a gathering. Our kids decided to climb one of the big hills by the playground and then roll down! Lots of dizzy, itchy (from the grass) kids, but it looked like bunches of fun!
My family went to Ft Harrison with a photographer friend for some family pictures. There were many places to go for pictures, we really had to stop thinking about the possibilities. The pictures turned out great and we have even more memories of the park. We have seen many people taking family pictures in various locations of the park.
If you have never been to Ft Harrison State Park, you are truly missing out on one of Indianapolis's gems. Please take some time this spring (or summer, or fall, or winter) and explore nature. Every time you go, there are new and exciting things to see!