Sunday, July 10, 2016

Walnut Grove

The girls and I continued our tour of Laura Ingalls Wilder sites this summer with a visit to Walnut Grove with the Clarks.  We had a great time at a family festival in the park, where we ate a picnic and they had several crafts for the kids to do.

After that, we visited the Laura Ingalls Wilder museum in town.  The kids enjoyed going through the buildings, which were replicas of what a church, schoolhouse, etc. would have looked like in Laura's time.  They especially enjoyed playing "store" and "post office" in one of the buildings.

One last stop before heading to our campsite was the dugout site by Plum Creek.  The actual dugout isn't there anymore, but there is an indentation and a sign marking the spot.  The biggest hit at this spot was playing in Plum Creek--it was perfect for a warm day and it was hard to tear the kids away!

We then drove to our campsite at Lake Shetek State Park to set up camp for the night, since we knew it was going to be a late night after the pageant.  I decided we didn't need a rain fly, since the forecast I had checked at home said a 1% chance of rain...that would prove to be a mistake in the end!

Back in town, we ate supper at the community center, where a local church serves a meal each pageant weekend.  Then we headed to the pageant.  Our seats were great, and the night was perfect with a cool breeze.  Everyone loved the show, and surprisingly, even Norah did well and stayed awake through it (it was a late one--9-11!).  Of course, all of the kids quickly conked out on our drive back to our campsite.

Unfortunately, around 3:30 in the morning, I woke up to flashing lights...lightning!  Thank goodness there was time to quickly go out and put the rain fly on the tent, because it started storming no more than 5 minutes after I had set it up.  We had kids who were awake (all except Norah) and a long night/morning.  We had breakfast in the tent and the kids played for a little while, before we just decided to pack up in the rain.

After we got loaded up, we went for a drive around the park and decided to stop for a quick hike to/around Loon Island (it had finally stopped raining!).  We would have loved to go to the swimming beach, too, but it was just too chilly and almost time for lunch.

Our last stop before heading home was Nellie's Cafe in Walnut Grove, where we enjoyed Nellie burgers.  Looking forward to our next Laura trip!

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