By Kim Lemmon
Several years ago there was a feature in Ohio’s Country Journal about The Farm at Walnut Creek. The property is open to the public and features horse drawn wagon rides through about 120 acres of rolling hills populated with all kinds of exotic animals.
In the past, my parents had taken my young nieces to visit the wildlife at The Farm which caused a little family drama because I wasn’t able to go with them at the time. I’m a big animal lover and I especially loved the idea of riding in the horse drawn wagon.
After a couple of years delay, we finally made plans to visit The Farm. My mom, dad, two nieces and my aunt and uncle and two of their grandsons were also along for the ride. It was definitely an adventure.
We were in a group of about 20 people on a wagon pulled by two Percherons. The staff provided each person with buckets of grain so they could feed the animals at the various places the wagon made stops during the ride.
We saw all kinds of animals including various types of cattle, llamas, deer, zebras, buffalo, and giraffes. The ride itself was exciting as the driver maneuvered the horses around animals that crowded toward the wagon for feed as we went up and down hills throughout The Farm.
I’m not the bravest person in the world so I let the kids sit on the side seats in the wagon so they could feed all of the critters while I watched and hid on the center seat. The animals were all safe but some were more aggressive than others about pushing toward the wagon to eat grain.
My favorite yet scariest stop during the ride was at the giraffe enclosure. When we first stopped, I didn’t realize the giraffes could reach down into the wagon. I also thought I was safe in the middle of the wagon. I’m pretty sure I screamed and I know I bent clear backward to get away from the giraffe as he leaned over his fence and into the wagon. I thought he was going to kiss me or lick me. He just wanted grain but I didn’t have any.
I moved to the other size of the wagon but my poor Aunt Nancy became the giraffes’ favorite person. She couldn’t escape the giraffes from her seat next to their enclosure. We made sure she had plenty of grain to feed the giraffes and it was fine. They really were beautiful, gentle creatures.
Enjoy the photos below and make sure to consider The Farm at Walnut Creek when you plan your next family adventure.