Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Fort Worth Stockyards!

Finally!! The Stockyards Cattle Drive and the Petting Zoo were on my wish list of family things to do, and we finally did it!  I have been to the Stockyards numerous times, but this was the first time I went for family fun.  We had a fantastic day and I have some more terrible pictures to share.

We took the train, because that in itself is part of the fun. You can take the Stockyards Trolley on Saturday only, so we did that on the way back as we missed it when we got to downtown.  We farted around at the Sundance Square Plaza since there is plenty of room for Jacob to release some wiggles before we head to Northside.  Not much to do there though, no events or anything, and we got bored quickly.  The Central Branch of the Fort Worth Library is just a few blocks away so we hoofed it.  What a great children's area they have!  Blaine and Jacob played together for a while, until I started to read to Jacob and Blaine went off to explore more of the library.  As an advocate for early literacy, I was delighted to see that they have early literacy kits and backpacks~
little story books with little puppets and little books and little instruments~ and if I wasn't about to travel across town on a bus/trolley, I would have checked one out.  

It was chow time, so we grabbed a spot and ate our little lunch.  Walking back to the spot where we could catch the trolley, I saw the bus that takes you to the Stockyards and we hopped on it instead.  I was full and ready to sit and relax. I guess the kids weren't so full as they snacked almost the whole way.  My little piggies!

Once we got to the Stockyards I put Jacob in the sling and we made our way towards the petting zoo.  We were almost at our destination when we heard music.  There is an area at the stockyards that is covered, and it runs along the railroad tracks.  This is Stockyards Station.  A band was playing, and of course Jacob was squirming around like crazy because he wanted to get down and dance... so we made a little detour.  He stood right in front and stared for a while, saying 'mum' (drum) and 'gee-tah' (guitar) pointing and laughing.  Then it was time to dance to some Willie Nelson.  He stomped and wiggled and waved his arms and laughed  After a while he wanted to walk around so we roamed for a while until I decided it was safe to leave and head to the petting zoo.

The sign I saw as we walked up said that the petting zoo was $2 per person.  I was instantly perturbed about this, as the website itself and several other sources say that it costs $1 per person.  I mean, I know it is only a dollar, but still, update your website.  Come on.  **It has since been changed**    Anyhow I paid it of course, as we were not going to miss out on this wish list item.  

I certainly think it was still well worth the $2 a person.  Blaine made instant friends with all the animals, they loved him, (they always do).  Jacob on the other hand, spent about 15 minutes running up to them, screaming and running away.  When he finally chilled out, he was able to pet the animals and quit freaking them out.  Blaine got sneezed on by the camel and I just about ralphed.  Yuck!  I think I could gag just remembering it.  Snack time came and it was time to go.  A squirt of hand sanitizer and we were off.  

4:00 finally rolled around and the street was cleared for the cattle drive.  On any given day there is quite a crowd for this event.  These amazing beasts led by cowboys on horseback are quite a sight for the crowd of tourists snapping photos and locals alike.  It doesn't last very long, but it is still worth seeing.  

Well, the cattle drive was over, Jacob was cranky and Blaine looked like he could pass out standing up.  We hit the trolley, the train, and then back to my wonderful home where I put Jacob down to sleep and sat on my butt for as long as possible.  The day was an absolute success and I was exhausted.