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Archive for the ‘Petting Farms’ Category

Madrac Farms Pumpkin Patch, Corn Maze Open Oct. 2 for Fall 2014 Season, Effingham County

Friday, August 29th, 2014

Pumpkin Patches Corn Mazes near Savannah

Growing pumpkins in humid Coastal Georgia is challenging. But Madrac Farms in Effingham County is making it happen.

This October, come visit this real pumpkin patch & enjoy the 5-acre corn maze, hayrides & other fall fun at this Rincon farm on Ralph Rahn Rd.

Madrac Farms grows the Orange Bulldog pumpkin, a new variety of pumpkin developed by the University of Georgia, which is specifically designed to grow in South Georgia’s humid climate. The farm also has other test varieties of orange & white pumpkins. Learn more about Madrac Farms here.

Pumpkin Patch Corn Maze near Savannah

Farm Activities

Opening Thursday Oct. 2 2014 at 10 AM through Nov. 1. 10 AM-4 PM Thursdays; 10 AM-6 PM Fridays & Saturdays.

Petting farm
Feed goats, chickens, Hazel the pot-belly pig. Animal feed is .50 cents.

Big Slide & Bouncy House
New this year: the big slide. Enjoy zipping down this 13-foot wooden slide on a potato sack. Kids can go alone or have parents ride with them.

Pumpkin Pickin
Choose from red, brown, Cinderella, white or traditional Orange.

Hay Rides
With 2 hay rides running almost all the time, you’ll never have to wait in line! Take a 10 minute ride through the Georgia woods & you may see deer, hawks, squirrels, rabbits even snakes

Corn Maze
5 acres – not too big, not too small. Kids can see if they can beat their friends through the maze in record time. Just right for the little ones & bigger kids, too.

BIG Pumpkin
Weighing in at over 100 lbs this pumpkin is sure to be your number #1 destination for photos.


$7 per person ages 3-59.
Ages 2 & younger are FREE with paying adult.
60 & older qualify for a senior citizen discount at $5 per person.
Military discount applies for active & retired military & veterans with proper I.D. $2 discount for all military & their families.
This price includes admission only which covers all of the above farm activities including the corn maze & hayrides (except animal feed for .50 cents). Drinks, food, pumpkins are extra. You aren’t required to purchase a pumpkin.

Extra charge for pony rides, face painting & other activities from vendors at the farm.

Food & beverages for sale, but you are welcome to bring a picnic to enjoy in the farm’s picnic area.

Field Trips

Madrac Farms is now scheduling Field Trips for PUMPKIN PATCH 2014. Learn more here.
Discounted group rates do apply when you bring a certain amount of people to the farm during events.

Madrac Farms, 580 Ralph Rahn Rd Rincon, Ga. On Facebook here ,(912) 704-7651, email, Madrac Farms is a advertiser

Summer kids’ nature programs @ Oatland Island Wildlife Center, Savannah

Thursday, June 5th, 2014

Summer Kids programs at Oatland Wildlife Center This summer Oatland Island Wildlife Center in Savannah offers enhanced programming. No pre-registration required for either program.

Bird of Prey (Hunters of the Sky) Wednesdays at 11:30 AM  June 11-July 30 2014

This 45 minute raptor interpretive program offers an inspiring way to learn about birds of prey including falcons, hawks and owls. You will get a close encounter with a few of our glove trained raptors such as: Womack the peregrine falcon, Hunter the red tailed hawk, Wahoohoo the barred owl and Icarus the screech owl. You will learn how each of these animals came to live at Oatland Island Wildlife Center and the unique characteristics that allow them to survive and prosper.

Program prices Adults: $7
Children 4 – 18, seniors, and active military: $5
Children 3 and under: free
Friends of Oatland Members: $2

Live Creature Feature on Fridays at 11:30 AM June 13-Aug. 1 2014

Each week we feature some of our reptilian and mammalian friends in a 45 minute live animal encounter. Learn about the unique characteristics of each organism and how they survive and some of the challenges they face living in our human environment.

Program prices
Adults: $7
Children 4 – 18, seniors, and active military: $5
Children 3 and under: free
Friends of Oatland Members: $2

For non-Friends of Oatland Members, this fee includes your admission to the Wildlife Center. While Friends of Oatland Members generally enjoy free admission to the Wildlife Center, enhanced programming always requires an additional fee. All proceeds benefit the animals of Oatland Island Wildlife Center.

Oatland Island Wildlife Center, 711 Sandtown Road, Savannah, 31410 tel: (912) 395-1212

Toddler Tuesdays @ Oatland Island Wildlife Center,

Tuesday, April 8th, 2014

Toddler Tuesdays nature programs for kids in Savannah at Oatland Island Wildlife CenterOatland Island Wildlife Center
Wildlife and education programs
711 Sandtown Rd.
Savannah, GA, 31410
(912) 395-1212

Admission rates & driving directions here.

Toddler Tuesdays at Oatland Island Wildlife Center.
Programs are at 10 AM & 11 AM on Tuesdays each week . Pre-registration required. Call 395-1500

Toddler Tuesday Program Fees for 2013:
General: $5 per child $5 per adult
Friends of Oatland Members: $5 per child, up to 2 adults FREE!

Program fee includes program and entrance to Oatland Island Wildlife Center and trails.

Toddler Tuesday Topics

If you are new to the Savannah area or are a new parent, then you need to check out Toddler Tuesdays, a fun weekly program that celebrates nature @ Oatland Island Wildlife Center, 711 Sandtown Rd. Savannah, GA, 31410.

At Toddler Tuesday, children & their parents/caretakers experience nature through themed activities including live animal encounters, wildlife nature walks, storytelling, songs, interactive finger-play & crafts.

Oatland’s naturalist Michelle Kelly leads these exciting & educational sessions.

NEW TIMES: 10 AM & 11 AM

Admission rates & driving directions here.

Toddler Tuesdays Programs sare at 10 AM & 11 AM on Tuesdays each week . Pre-registration required. Call 395-1500

Toddler Tuesday Program Fees: General: $5 per child $5 per adult Friends of Oatland Members: $5 per child, up to 2 adults FREE!

Program fee includes program and entrance to Oatland Island Wildlife Center and trails.


Oatland Island Wildlife Center Wildlife, 711 Sandtown Rd. Savannah, GA, 31410 (912) 395-1212 Driving directions here.

Free admission to Family Fun Day @ Georgia Buffalo Ranch

Tuesday, March 25th, 2014

Georgia Buffalo Ranch

Free admission to Georgia Buffalo Ranch on Family Fun Day, 10 AM-5 PM Sat. April 5 2014. There are fees for concessions, buggy tours  & hay rides.

Georgia Buffalo Ranch is open to the public. Bring the kids out to the Georgia Buffalo Ranch to take a ranch tour, feed the buffalo or visit the Trading Post, meet Belle the Donkey & her buddy Donkey.
Spring 2014 Hours for the Georgia Buffalo Ranch & Trading Post.
Wednesday – Friday ~ 10am – 4pm
Saturday’s ~ 10am – 5pm

Georgia Buffalo Ranch, 11495 US Hwy 17, Townsend, Ga 31331 tel: (855) 242-2833 email ,


Ottawa Farms corn maze in Bloomingdale is open weekends through November (Savannah corn mazes)

Friday, November 1st, 2013

Ottawa Farms Savannah 2013You waited all of October for this: Ottawa Farms in Bloomingdale is now open weekends through November & so is their 10-acre corn maze! Let the CORNfusion begin.

This popular fall outing is an easy drive from Savannah, located at  702 Bloomingdale Rd, Bloomingdale, Ga 31302.

Owners of the farm & staff have been busy getting the farm ready. So we haven’t been able to confirm these hours, admission & activities that we puled from recent posts on the Ottawa Farms Facebook page. So please call to confirm the farm is open before making the trip.  (912) 748-3035

10-acre Corn maze hours
Sat: 1-10 PM (Last ticket sold at 9:30 PM)
Sun: 1-6 PM
Open every weekend (weather permitting) through November



Farm Activities

Hayrides, corn maze, cow train rides, pig races, inflatables, Big Mo Super Slide, duck races, inflatables, bonfires, corn crib, the corn cannon (3 shots for $1) and more.

Items for sale in the Ottawa Farms General Store include:

Ottawa Farms, 702 Bloomingdale Rd, Bloomingdale, Georgia 31302, (912) 748-3035, email ,  On Facebook here.  Ottawa Farms is a advertiser.

Sandbox @ the Stables: Labor Day celebration @ Lawton Stables, Sea Pines Resort, Hilton Head Is.

Tuesday, August 27th, 2013

Labor Day kids activities: Sandbox at the Stables Hilton Head Is.The Sandbox Children’s Museum and Lawton Stables , both on Hilton Head Is., invite you & your family to “Sandbox at the Stables” this Labor Day.

Everyone is invited to this community celebration on Labor Day Monday, September 1 2014 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. @ Lawton Stables, located inside Sea Pines Resort on Hilton Head Is. (about a 1 hr drive from Savannah).

This event will include: Music, Pony rides, hayrides and the animal farm, The Sandbox’s Imagination Hour, craft projects and mobile interactive museum exhibits A pitching radar Kids Zone’s inflatable water slides and bounce houses Cappy the Clown Face painting Family activities like bocce ball, frisbee, ring toss, horse shoes and corn hole  

There will be concessions available for purchase and refreshments including, snow cones and cotton candy.

Participants may bring their own picnic provisions and beverages.

Participants can purchase additional tickets for food, drinks and some activities.

Admission is $5 per person, children 12 months and under are free. LOTS OF FREE ACTIVITIES. (Plus $6 Sea Pines gate entrance fee per auto)

(The Sandbox at the Pope Avenue location will be closed on Labor Day)

Lawton Stables, 190 Greenwood Drive, Hilton Head Island, S.C. 29928 tel: (843) 671-2586,


Fairy & Gnome Festival @ Oatland Island Wildlife Center, Savannah

Saturday, March 23rd, 2013

Fairy and Gnome Festival 2013 in SavannahFairy & Gnome Festival
Oatland Island Wildlife Center
10 AM-2 PM Sat. April 13
Join Oatland Island Wildlife Center for a day of enchantment! This family-themed festival is all about the “wee folk” getting up close with the natural world and encouraging imaginative outdoor play. There will be a scavenger hunt, costume contest, crafts, and games. All ages are encouraged to participate in the annual gnome and fairy home building contest. Homes can be built at the festival by using natural materials from Oatland’s forest. Bring your whole family to stroll Oatland’s magical trails and maybe you will catch a glimpse of a fairy or gnome looking for a place to call home.

General Admission applies: $5 for adults, $3 for children, seniors and military.
Children 3 and under are free.
There will be addition fees for some activities.

For more information please call 912-395-1517 or click here. .

Savannah & Lowcountry kids’ spots that are open on MLK Jr. Day, Mon. Jan. 21 2013

Monday, January 14th, 2013

Oatland Island Wildlife Center, Savannah. Details here.

Skidaway Is. State Park, Savannah. Details here.

The Sandbox Interactive Children’s Museum, Hilton Head Is., S.C. Open MLK Jr. Day 2013, 10 AM-5 PM.  Details here.

Lawton Stables, Sea Pines Resort, Hilton Head. Is. S.C. Lawton’s free animal farm includes goats, sheep, pot-bellied pigs, ponies, rabbits, a deer named Callie and a Clydesdale named Harley (who loves visitors bearing carrots and apples). Pony rides and horseback riding available for a fee. Details here.

South Carolina Aquarium, Charleston Harbor , S.C. Details here.

Children’s Museum of the Lowcountry, Charleston, S.C. Details here. Join us to celebrate MLK, Jr. Day from
9am – 5pm! We’ll have a Peace Parade and more!

Museum of Science & History (MOSH) & The Bryan-Gooding Planetarium, Jacksonville, Fla. Details here.

Jacksonville Zoo and Gardens, Jacksonville, Fla.  Details here.

For our weekend daytrips suggestions to kid-friendly places near Savannah that are worth the drive, click here.

Save the dates: Halloween Hike 2012 at Oatland Is Wildlife Center, Savannah

Saturday, September 15th, 2012

One of our favorite annual Fall events, the Halloween Hike at Oatland Wildlife Center in Savannah, is set for Oct. 19 & 20 2012.

It’s a fun, safe, not-so-scary event for little trick-or-treaters.

TIME: 5-8:30 PM Oct. 19 & 20 2012

Walk with your trickster down our friendly forest trail to meet and gather goodies from our friendly animal characters.

Let Mother Earth show you the way and sit with Mother Goose as she tells her favorite rhymes. Face painting, spooky crafts, and many more monstrous activities await your arrival. Children must be accompanied by an adult.

Details here.

Oatland Island Wildlife Center Wildlife, 711 Sandtown Rd. Savannah, GA, 31410 (912) 395-1212 Driving directions here.

You’re invited: Sandbox at Lawton Stables Labor Day Event, Hilton Head Is.

Sunday, August 19th, 2012

You’re invited to an outdoor family Labor Day event at an ideal spot on Hilton Head is.

The Sandbox Children’s Museum and Lawton Stables are excited about “Sandbox at the Stables,” their new community Labor Day event Monday, September 3 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. AT LAWTON STABLES, Sea Pines Resort. (The Sandbox physical location will be closed)

It will be day of family fun with live music, activities, shows, exhibits, and picnicking (feel to bring your own, but there will be concessions available).

$5 per person, children 12 months and under are Free. (Members Only-With each paid admission, you will receive 5 concession/activity tickets FREE)

Call the Sandbox (843-842-7645) by 4pm August 31st to get a FREE Sea Pines Gate pass for this event only, (otherwise $5 gate fee into Sea Pines will apply per vehicle). Lawton Stables is located at 190 Greenwood Dr  Hilton Head Island, SC 29928,

Take your child on a Bike Safari ride, Hilton Head Is. (Free children’s activities)

Wednesday, August 31st, 2011

Here’s a fun family bike ride suggestion: the I-Spy-a-Critter Bike Ride on Hilton Head Is.

This creature feature ride is a 10-mile route perfect for kids because it’s a treasure hunt for the island’s collection of permanent “creatures” – an alligator statue, a peacock stained glass window, a giant pelican, dolphin door, heron and horse statue as well as a few live critters – a trio of macaws, a Clydesdale, ponies, goats and a deer.

To make the bike safari adventure semi-educational, have your little ones complete the nature rhymes we paired with “animal” sightings. Check out the ride here:

Two Toddler Tuesdays resume Sept. 7 at Oatland Island Wildlife Center

Saturday, August 28th, 2010

oatland-islandToddler Tuesdays are back at Oatland Island Wildlife Center after a summer hiatus!

This season, there will be TWO Toddler Tuesdays timeslots each week, as opposed to one. Same topic and activities for each one. One program will be at 10 AM and the second at 11 AM.

Michele Mazzei, the beloved leader of the popular weekly programs, said the goal of having two sessions is to keep the classes small and intimate.

Preregistration via phone at 912.395.1500 $3 program fee per child and adults free!

The theme of Tues. Sept. 7 is Welcome Back Toddlers! and will feature a visit from Daisy, Oatland’s resident opossum.

Oatland Island Wildlife Center is located just outside Savannah. Click here for info.

Animal star at Hilton Head Island’s petting farm

Sunday, January 3rd, 2010

callie-and-thumperMeet the star of the Lawton Stables’ animal farm in my Sunday newspaper column.

This four-legged darling is better than Bambi! Callie the fawn can bring children and deer hunters to their knees. Read all about the star of the Sea Pines petting farm on Hilton Head Is. here.

Raptor Flight Show returns to Statesboro

Wednesday, September 16th, 2009

raptor-showSummer’s end means the popular raptors flight show is back at  The Center for Wildlife Education and The Lamar Q Ball Jr. Raptor Center in Statesboro.

The raptors flight show - with falcons, owls, hawks and more – is at 3 PM Saturdays, following a 2 PM reptile show, that includes insects, tree frogs, snakes and more. The flight show was on hiatus during summer.  

Other features of the Wildlife Education Center include a Discovery Trail which includes a opossum and skunk; a Habitat Walk includes a live bald eagle in her nest; 10 displays housing several live birds; a wetland preserve with ducks and wading birds, a playground; and “Discovery Logs” where kids can crawl inside and see encased ladybugs, grasshoppers, frogs, beetles and more.

amphitheater-gsuLarge groups, including school field trips, moms-tot groups and homeschool groups, can request a weekday raptors show. Call 912.478.0831.

The center also offers several birthday party packages that include the reptile show or bird show. There’s also a Birthday Overnight Camping Adventure.

The center is open 1- 5 PM  Saturdays during the school year. For more info, click here or call 912.478.0831.

Apple picking, petting farm in North Georgia

Monday, September 14th, 2009

hillcrest-orchards-logoTime to head to North Georgia to pick apples. Or, at least, partake in apple picking festivities.

The annual Apple Pickin Jubliee at Hillcrest Orchards in Ellijay – happening this upcoming weekend Sept. 19 &  20 and next weekend Sept. 26 & 27 –  has everything that you associate with autumn and farms: apple bobbing and corn shelling, cloggers and country bands, mule-drawn wagon rides, homemade fried apple pies and caramel apples, and, of course, pippin-picking from dwarf trees.

Kids can milk Buttercup, the farm’s milk cow; meet Barney the Talking Bull; watch a live bee demo; cheer on pigs racing toward an Oreo cookie; and compete in the John Deere Derby pedal tractor trike track. The farm is open all day, 9 am-6 pm Saturdays and Sundays. Click here for directions and more info.

Admission: $5. Separate $3 admission to petting farm.

All activities are available every weekend in October, too.

Children’s activities just outside Savannah: Get to Know a Gator program

Saturday, July 18th, 2009


Only a few more chances remain for your child to get upclose and personal with an alligator, learn their habits and have pictures taken with a mouth-taped-tightly-shut gator.

We recently enjoyed the “Get to Know a Gator” program at the Coastal Discovery Museum at Honey Horn Plantation on Hilton Head. The program from Gatorland features a live alligator and busts several myths about gators, including the legend about running zig-zag if a gator ever chases you. Apparently, you should just run. And never feed alligators.

The program is held several times every Thursday through Aug. 13: 9:30 AM, 11:30 AM and 2 PM. For cost info, click here.
For reservations, call 843.689.6767 ext 223.

Pony rides, animal farm, retired Clydesdale at Lawton Stables

Sunday, July 12th, 2009

pony-rides-at-lawton-stablesanimal-farm-at-lawton-stablesgoat-at-lawton-stablescoin-operated-horse-at-lawton-stablesMy son is still talking about the pony ride he took on “Cookie” last week at Lawton Stables on Hilton Head Island. And the goats he feed; as well as the llama, bunnies, sheep, chickens, turtles, roosters, donkeys, miniature ponies and trail horses he visited at Lawton’s FREE animal petting farm.

Pony rides for children ages 7 and younger are $10.

Kids can also pet and feed a friendly retired Clydesdale, Harley, at the stables, located inside Sea Pines Resort. Don’t let the gates at the Sea Pines entrance keep you from visiting. You don’t have to be staying at Sea Pines to visit Lawton Stables. It’s open to the public. Entrance to Sea Pines is $6 per car.

Lawton Stables also has a gift shop with horse-related items and a coin-operated horse for kids too young for the pony experience. Lawton also hosts kids’ horse-themed birthday parties and offers horse trail rides and carriage rides.

Click here for more info.

Improvements to Oatland’s Toddler Tuesdays

Monday, September 8th, 2008

oatland-island.bmpThe popular Toddler Tuesdays craft, storytime and animal program @ Oatland Island Wildlife Center is about to get better.

Starting Tues. Sept. 16, Toddler Tuesdays will feature more age appropriate activities on alternating weeks.

  • Each month, the 1st and 3rd Tuesdays of the month will be more appropriate for 6 month-2 year olds.
  • The 2nd and 4th Tuesdays of the month will be more appropriate for 3-4 year olds.
  • On the rare 5th weeks of each month, the program will be appropriate for all ages

Of course, all toddler ages from 6 months-4 years are welcome to attend any of the programs! Toddler Tuesdays is from 10:30-11:15 am every Tuesday. It’s free with regular admission to Oatland Island Wildlife Center.

Dates, ages and topics are also posted on Oatland’s Web site. Click here.

Where to meet a camel, kangaroo or baby buffalo

Saturday, August 30th, 2008

petting-zoo-logoReaders often ask for tips on local petting farms.

Here’s one we’re looking forward to checking out: The Double C Ranch and All-American Petting Zoo. It’s nearby in South Carolina, just off highway 460 near Ridgeland.

The farm has about 200 animals @ their new Educational Learning Center, where kids learn to respect and take care of animals .

The menagerie includes a pot-bellied pig who likes to play soccer, a camel, donkey, kangaroo, zebra, baby buffalo, horses, llamas, emus, rheas, angora goats and more.

Schools, churches, clubs and parents are encouraged to bring student groups to the center to learn about the scientific names of animals, what they eat, the products they produce – rather than just reading about such subjects in text books.

For directions and business hours, call 843.441.9790. For more info on local petting zoos, click here.

Newborn calf on exhibit @ Oatland Island

Monday, July 21st, 2008

“It’s a boy!”

oatland-calf.gifOatland Island Wildlife Center is celebrating the birth of a baby calf, now on exhibit in the center’s barnyard area called the Georgia Farm.

The young male calf was born 9:30 am July 10 to the center’s cow, Sapphire. The calf is named “Gerren” after longtime, dedicated caretakers Chuck, Carol, Spenser and Victor Gerren.

Don’t forget. Oatland Island hosts Toddler Tuesdays, story and craft time for children ages 6 months to 4 years. Each Tuesday at 10:30 am, a new 45-minute program includes stories, games, crafts and animal visitors. According to the Web site schedule, wolves are the focus of this Tuesday’s program. But that is subject to change. The event is free with regular Oatland admission.

Party for kids @ the Raptor Center

Saturday, April 5th, 2008

gsu-logo.jpgIf your kids have yet to visit the Raptor Center and Wildlife Education Center @ Georgia Southern University, Monday evening would be a great time to do so.

Y’all are all invited to enjoy “Rations for Raptors,” an evening for food, fun, and family-oriented activities at GSU’s Center for Wildlife Education, 5-7 pm Mon., April 7. Proceeds benefit the Lamar Q Ball, Jr. Raptor Center and the Wildlife Education Center.

Many of the birds from the Rapter Center will be on display along the walkway. Members of the staff will hand-walk raptors and reptiles.

Admission is free. But a Tex-Mex buffet dinner prepared by the University’s Hotel and Restaurant Program will be available for $10 for adults and $5 for children. Available for dine-in or take-out.

The evening will also include: piñata stations for children beginning at 6 p.m., a campfire, mariachi music. For more info, call

The Raptor Center is also open to visitors at other times and is available to be booked for birthday parties. Click here for birthday party info.

During September – May, Saturday hours at the Raptor Center are 1-5 p.m., a scheduled reptile show at 2 p.m. and raptor show at 3 p.m. Click here for hours, program and directions.

Wanted: more activities like this for babies

Monday, March 31st, 2008

oatland-wildlife-center.jpgDon’t forget, Tuesday (tomorrow) is the debut of toddler story time @ Oatland Island Wildlife Center’s main building.

Here at SouthernMamas, we often hear from parents who say our area doesn’t have enough activities for really young kids. So when pre, pre-schooler activities are offered, let’s support them, whether it’s a new story time like this, or the Little Jumping Bean indoor inflatable play area, or the new soft play @ the Savannah Mall.

Oatland Island’s Toddler Tuesdays story time, 10:30-11:15 am, is for children ages six months to 4 years. Each week, a new 45-minute program will be offered and may feature stories, games, songs, crafts and animal visitors.

Free with regular Oatland Island admission. Admission is $5 for adults; $3 for children ages 4-17; children ages 3 and younger are free. 912.898.3980.

For more story times in the Savannah/Hilton Head Island area, click here.

Story time coming to Oatland Island

Tuesday, March 18th, 2008

oatland-wildlife-center.jpgSo happy to tell you about a new story time program that includes the wee kiddies, too.

Oatland Island Wildlife Center – aka Savannah’s zoo – is starting Toddler Tuesdays, a story time for children ages six months to 4 years. The program starts April 1 and will be every Tuesday from 10:30-11:15 am. Each week will include a different story and craft. Afterwards, the group will head outside and visit the animal featured in that day’s story book.

For more info, call 912.898.3980. For more story times in the Savannah/Hilton Head Island area, click here.

Triplet baby goats @ HHI petting farm

Sunday, January 27th, 2008

triplet-goats.jpgSea Pines Lawton Stables on Hilton Head Island is always a fun place to visit because they have a petting farm, pony rides and trail rides. It’s even more special now after triplet goats were born Jan. 20. Read about the rare triplets here.

We took my son to see the baby goats today snug in their stable with mom. As an auntie to triplet boys, I couldn’t help feel for the mama goat. She looked tired. Poor woman. The petting farm also has a new batch of baby bunnies among all the other typical barnyard animals. All of which- plus discounted pony and trail rides for South Carolina residents – makes a visit to Lawton Stables well worth the trip.

Lawton Stables @ 190 Greenwood Drive in Sea Pines Plantation, HHI is open daily from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. For information, call 843.671.2586. Lawton Stables also hosts children birthday parties.

New petting farm in Midway

Saturday, September 22nd, 2007

peacocks.jpgThanks to a Southern Mamas subscriber who emailed us about a new petting farm featured on WTOC.

Camp Tree of Life Petting Farm in Midway, Ga. has peacocks, emus, buffaloes, miniature horses and all your regular barnyard critters, 300-plus animals on about 20 acres. Bishop McKenzie opened the farm years ago for young members of his church, according to WTOC. He recently opened it to the public.

The farm is on Lewis Frasier Road in Midway. Open 10 am-4 pm Saturdays. Admission: $10 for 12 and older; $4 for children ages 3 to 11. Click here for more info.

SouthernMamas is compiling a list of petting farms within a day’s drive. Keep us savvy by emailing

How bout them U-pick apples?

Wednesday, September 19th, 2007

tree.jpgU-pick apple orchards are as rare in the Lowcountry as basements.

So if September makes you want to feel crisp mountain air, put on some tweed and take the kids apple picking, plan on trekking to North Georgia this weekend or next for to catch the last two weekends of the Annual Apple Pickin’ Jubliee at Hillcrest Orchards. The festival includes everything that you associate with autumn and farms: apple bobbing and corn shelling, cloggers and country bands, mule-drawn wagon rides, homemade fried apple pies and caramel apples, and, of course, pippin-picking from dwarf trees.

Kids can milk Buttercup, the farm’s milk cow; meet Barney the Talking Bull; watch a live bee demo; cheer on pigs racing toward an Oreo cookie; and compete in the John Deere Derby pedal tractor trike track. Oh, and did we mention you’re supposed to find time to pick apples, too? Good thing the farm is open all day, 9 am-6 pm Saturdays and Sundays.

Admission: $5. Separate $3 admission to petting farm.

All activities are available every weekend in October, too, EXCEPT the apple picking part. That’s only this month, leaving much more time next month for caramel apple eating.

Savannah’s own backyard barnyard

Tuesday, September 18th, 2007

oatland.jpgThanks to a tip from savvy Southern Mama subscriber Pamela Kraft of southside Savannah, we have one more petting farm to add to our list.

Oatland Island, aka Savannah’s zoo, offers more than a two-mile nature trail with timber wolves, alligators, sandhill cranes, panthers and other native animals. For kids who want to get up close with animals, there’s a barnyard open on weekdays. It features a cow, donkey, two sheep, three goats, a pig, two bunnies, geese, ducks, a chicken and turkeys.

The barnyard program “Hop, Run, Swish and Swim” involves teaching the kids about the animals’ movements, colors, textures and more, said Oatland teacher Pam Keener.

It’s great for schools, moms groups or even sitters, usually groups of 10 for $3 each child. If your group is smaller, you can still make a reservation, but minimum cost is $30. The barnyard program is also one of the themes available for birthdays. Reservations required (912) 898-3980.

Seeking E-I-E-I-Os

Friday, September 14th, 2007

petting-zoo-1.jpgLiving in close proximity to the beach means our kids will know the difference between sand dollars and starfish, herons and pelicans, but will they be able to tell a baa-baa from an oink-oink? Enter the beauty of the petting farm.

SouthernMamas is on the lookout for petting farms that are within a day’s drive. Our first find: a little known, free petting farm at Lawton Stables, 190 Greenwood Drive in Sea Pines Plantation on Hilton Head Island. All the typical animals you’d expect are there from bunnies to burros. Kids can also take pony rides. For those 8 and older, there are trail rides through the nature preserve and riding lessons. Open seven days a week. Call for trail rides availability and reservations. (843) 671-2586.

Know about other petting farms in our area? Tell us about them. Email