If you’ve shied away from taking the kids to Stan Hywet Hall — all that really old stuff just waiting to be broken — this is the year to go.
The Great Garden Adventure encourages families to explore many areas of the 70-acre property that were previously inaccessible.
“The idea is that kids go out and just create their own adventure out there,” says Stan Hywet’s Donna Spiegler. “Even if you’ve been here before, we’ll take you into areas you didn’t know existed.”
Along the way, kids will encounter “imagination stations” with interactive displays about worms, frogs, trees, flowers, bugs and more. Five of last year’s Treemendous Treehouses are back, and artist-in-residence P.R. Miller has converted the manor’s old tennis court into a maze that incorporates found-object sculptures.
Plus, you’ll pick up bits of interesting knowledge: Who knew that decaying trees were filled with concrete in the 1920s and 1930s in hopes of saving them? You’ll see eight cement tree castings still standing, though the trunks have crumbled away.
Packed lunches are permitted, but Stan Hywet’s café features food from Mustard Seed Market. Kid-friendly fare such as macaroni and cheese and peanut butter and jelly sandwiches will energize your troops after a long day of exploration.