Vacation 2014 Part 1: High Desert Museum

IMG_20140627_163126185Ah, my summer vacation, the 1 week a year I plan, savor, and look forward to. This year, I planned one stop for the kids and I. We met up with Aunt and Uncle at the High Desert Museum, just South of Bend, OR.IMG_8465

While trying to close the deal on a house, I’ve been rather busy. Signing the papers on Friday afternoon, I loaded and drove as far as I could before needed to rest in Sumpter. My brother had picked up 1 of my 2 children from relatives, and was delivering him to the museum. We had both visited it when we were kids, and thought it’d be a fun throwback for us all. My daughter decided to sit this one out, favoring relatives and horses instead.

IMG_8506After saying our hello’s, we strolled into their grill for a tasty lunch. Satisfied, we started touring the exhibits. My son had been cooped up in the truck all morning and was “climbing the walls” or in this case, rocks, etc. The novelty of this museum, is that it combines not just indoor/outdoor exhibits, but also some animals, leaving plenty for everyone. IMG_8514

I could go on forever describing them all, but instead I’ll give you some highlights. First is the ‘Miller’ homestead. On top of the role-playing guides, the cabin was ‘touchable.’ This meant Tanner could ‘feel’ and mess with everything. He loved it, but I was going nuts. We checked out their breed of cold-adapted chickens, and had ourselves a good old-fashioned hoop race in the yard! (Definitely racked up some extra pictures in the gallery, below.) *Warning: My brother and I are both wearing our ‘silly hats.’*

IMG_8536Next, we took a pause for the steam-powered sawmill. (I’d love to be there when they fire it up!) My brother and I absorbed the manliness of it all, and admired the associated wood working tools, sheds, & contraptions. We got our fix of testosterone and moved on to the otter exhibit.IMG_8573

It strikes me odd, that there’s otters in captivity that far inland, but they’re fun to watch, regardless. We were able to make the 2PM ‘Otter Talk’ where they tell you all about them. More importantly, they get fed, and will be out swimming for your observation. My brother didn’t think we’d be there that long, but it took us 3 hours. One exhibit area was closed for renovation, but we did stop at the gift store & smash some commemorative pennies…

IMG_8660The last highlight I’ll share is the Native American exhibit. My brother remembers this one, though it’s evolved. We especially enjoyed the ‘Life on the Res.” house, complete with creaky boards from kids ‘upstairs’ and The Lone Ranger on the TV. My son really wanted to stay and watch it. It was here he met a fellow kid, which he would later play on the playground with.

With that, we hit the road, grabbing dinner in Klamath Falls, and camp thereafter. For each thing I mentioned, there are about  8 pictures and things I didn’t, so feel free to checkout the gallery. (I’m even in some of them.)

Stay tuned for 6 more days of fun!

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