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Friday, May 30, 2014

Charles Towne Landing

Today was the last day of school!!  There was some question if this was going to be the last day or not, but on Wednesday at 4:30, the Governor signed the bill waiving those last two make up days.
I thought we should do something fun, since school was out at 10:30am!   When we went to the scout store to get Lon's Webelo uniform we did some exploring. We passed the entrance for Charles Towne Landing.  Looked like it could be something fun.
Today was the day we found out!
The entrance of the park.

So happy to be outside and out of school
We bought a pass, so we can continue to go to all the fun State parks all year long.
I had read on line that they had a restaurant, but they closed that a while ago.
In the exhibit hall.

A replica of the Caroline, the ship that brought the first settlers to Charles Towne. They chose this spot because it was more easily defended than the peninsula that Charleston now sits on.  One of the reasons that Charles Towne was founded, was for timber to the sugar plantations in Barbados.
We were happy to know that there was a shuttle to the ship Adventure. It was a mile and a half through the park.  It was also HOT, about 90.  Sadly when we got to the shuttle spot, the man running the shuttle was going to take some time off and not be back till after 1.  So walking we would go!
A statue of the Kiawah Chief that helped the English settlers
The marker near there reads:
The Kiawah chief, or Cassique, invited the new English settlers to build their village here at Albemarle Point. The arrangement had immediate benefits for both the Kiawah and the English.
The Kiawah often fought against the Westos, an aggressive tribe who lived along the Savannah River. The Westos used European guns to raid other tribes’ coastal villages. With help from the English settlers – and their English guns – the Kiawah could better defend themselves against their longtime enemy
In return, the Kiawah helped the English feed, clothe and shelter themselves during their early years in a wild an untamed land.

The tree stumps tell a little story about the trees. They had a bald cypress, this nutty pecan, and Mrs. Warring's magnolia.  Pretty interesting. 
Playing with a mini cannon in the palisade
He would not get in the stocks. No matter how much I cajoled. 
 A beautiful spot for a home. 
Lon did not think people could have actually lived there as there was no  wooden floor and not much space.  
 There was a skittles lane set up. So Lon gave it a try. He got a spare!  He reset the pins and put the ball back.  
The park is beautiful
We made it down to the ship!!
This is a display of the yard arm and a ship being built. 
Talking to Tim aboard the Adventure.  The ship was used to transfer cargo between Charles Towne,  Barbados and New York. She was not built for trans atlantic crossings
View from the bow
Ranger Tim teaching Lon about the Bilge Pump
Looking for Fiddler Crabs. 
the ribs
Looking for male fiddler crabs
The Adventure is not a big ship. 

Found the male fiddler crabs
Cardinals. They are such pretty little birds!

Lon pointed it out to me, I did not see him at first

In South Carolina, they have State Jr. Ranger badges.
They have three levels you have to complete to get a backpack. Lon did level one today. They printed him a certificate with his name on it and gave him a badge.  We can finish up the next two levels at two other state parks.  The booklet was not difficult. The books are generic, so the ranger gave us the next two level booklets to take with us.
Just as we were about to leave, the thunder clapped and the lightening flashed. The skies opened up and the rain came down.   We waited a few minutes, and what we thought was a winding down of the rain, turned out to be a lull. We got soaked.
It was a fun day!

Saturday, May 24, 2014

Bee City!

When Mark and Lon went camping, they heard about a place just down the road called Bee City. Sounded like something fun. Today was the day to go check it out.
When we paid our entrance fee, we also bought food for the lemurs and monkeys, the cows, donkeys and llamas. There was also a baggie for the aviary birds.
Feeding the Lemurs.  We were pretty sure one was named Julian.

Brown Lemurs! They had the softest paws. They would grab your hand and pull it closer so they could eat out of your hand.
A Cavie.

Bee City!
Just two prairie dogs!  Brought back memories of Devil's Tower!
All the kids got their picture taken on the fiberglass horses.
We went  into the aviary. We broke off bits of the feed and put it in our hands. WOW. The little birds just flocked to us.
One tip for next time is to not have any of the other cups of food with us. The little birds wanted that too!
At one point I had 8 little birds on my hand.

This was more fun than I expected it to be
Little Yellow Bird
I was having a great time with the little birds.
Lon fed the little birds on one of the trays. He was a bit nervous to have them on his hand. Maybe next time.
Feeding the goats!
Brand New Baby Goat.  There were two.  One of the little human girls wanted to know why they did not want any of the food she was trying to give them.  I am thinking they are just too little yet.
Inside the nature house. It did not smell like the reptile house in Monroe.  There was really not a noticeable smell inside.
But there were crocodiles. and spiders. and snakes.
There were baby Sulcata Tortoise too
This is as close the the alligator as Lon wanted to get.  The gator was about 5. They grow slow. This one was hatched in captivity, so this is his life.
A Koi Pond! Beautiful fish
We went into the Bee Center and saw a hive. Lon thought it was pretty cool. He looked for the Queen. It was pretty amazing.  Lots of bees doing there thing.  They had a pipe that led to the outside, so the bees could come and go.
 A fiberglass warthog and dinosaur!
We did get some honey. Mark was looking for honey comb and they did not have any out. Just as we were about to leave, they started restocking the shelf.  We got a nice piece of honey comb too.

It was fun. I am happy we went.

Friday, May 23, 2014

Reading Carnival

I got to volunteer at Lon's school today! So much fun!
They were doing something called a Reading Carnival.  The kids got to go play games for about an hour, the number of games they got to play depended on the number of words they read. Some kids got less, some  got more. I was in charge of the dice roll table for 2 hours.
Lon tossing the ball at the tin can angry bird pigs. He did knock them down!
Lon is in that crowd somewhere.
Lon was more thrilled than he looks. These are the giant foam dice I was in charge of.  Roll anything and get a prize, roll a twelve and get a coupon for another game in the Carnival

Lon showing off his loot.
He was having fun. Around his neck is the pass with all the games he earned on it. I had to cross off a game piece for everyone who came to the dice table
All too soon it was time to go back into class.