Swiss Heritage Village Field Trip

Last Friday we traveled to the Swiss Heritage Village in Berne, IN, for a field trip.  It was their educational day, part of their annual fall festival.  I think it is safe to say that this was the first of MANY trips there in the coming years.  This place was amazing!  The kids had nothing but positive comments once we were back in school today.

The place was split into 5 different sections.  The schools were divided up into groups, and each group traveled through the sections on a schedule throughout the day, spending about an hour at each area.  There was so much to do that I know we missed something, but I think we got a great taste of Indiana History, and there was definitely something for everyone!!

Within the first 30 minutes there, I had heard MANY different adjectives describing their experience.  Anything from “fluffy” to “warm, squishy, and weird!” to anything in between…pretty much described our day!  I’ll allow the following pictures to do the explaining.

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A favorite stop was the lower level of the barn, where baby chicks had just hatched that morning.  “Fluffy” and “cute” were heard here more than once!  (They really were cute…”peep, peep, peep!”  Aww…)

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Another favorite part of the day was the Old Fashioned Merry Go Round.  They wound you up, then let it unwind and spin you around!  Check out this video of how it works:  

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Goat milking: “Warm, squishy, and weird!”  Enough said.  🙂

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There were various craft stations, including tin and leather working, doll making, candle dipping, soap making, and a beading station.  All of these stations were part of the experience, and the kids got to take home the items they made.  So many fun pioneer-themed crafts!

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There were TONS of games for the kids to play!  Rope ladders, a bucking bronco, slingshots…but the hands-down favorite (of the boys, at least) was the Tug-O-War.  Check out the progression of pictures below:

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Ready to start…

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…pull!!

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Hang in there, guys, hang in there…

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…oh man.  Well…better luck next time, guys!  Hehe…

There were also different areas with reenactment-type of activities.  Buildings you could go through, people dressed in the times teaching you different things about the buildings and areas.  It was really informative and the kids enjoyed these areas just as much as the crafts and games!

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1901 Schoolhouse

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Fur traders

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1812 and Civil War encampments

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Doctor’s Office

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Blacksmith

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Doing the laundry!

This was SUCH a great field trip.  Don’t worry, Swiss Heritage Village…we’ll be back next year!!  🙂

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