After paying the horrible price for showing up late to Mt. Vernon’s Colonial Market and Fair this year, we vowed to be there at opening for the Fall Harvest Festival. What has four thumbs and got the very first parking spot after the handicapped slots? These parents.
Try this outing info at the bottom.
Because we were there bright and early it was pretty cold. Cold enough for Fluffy to start the day by sadly nibbling the plastic stroller cover.
But Peppers antics soon cheered her.
The cold or my sly marketing must have kept away the crowds because we were able to go on the mansion tour (where photography is not allowed) and get in on all the activities with very manageable lines.
The horse hoof, child-creeper-outer was there again.
Some chick in a doily was working on Aurora’s finger pricker.
We made the obligatory cornhusk doll to add to the collection.
And rocked out to some hammered dulcimer.
The Mrs. Field’s pumpkin cookies inspired the boys to put on some manner of Saturday Night Live skit.
Is it just me or does General Washington get more curmudgeonly and pompous every year? He used to be cool. Now it’s like, if you didn’t want us on your estate, you shouldn’t have invited us. And he corrected me when I asked, “Can we take a picture with you?” “I don’t know whether you ‘can’.” Good one, George. That never gets old.
The mild Indian summer meant the leaves were not as nicely turned as last year.
But Miley Cyrus didn’t seem to mind. Noooooooooooooooooooo!
One of the funniest moments was watching the kids go through this extremely simple hay maze. Peppers got stuck circling 4 bales of hay over and over and over.
Fluffy came much closer to catching those rings this year than last. One day, Fluffs. One day.
A couple of years ago, the team of shire horses was a matched pair of sisters called Henrietta and Harriet. Then one of them got cataracts. Now it’s one of the sisters and a new horse called Lydia.
Despite the chilly weather, we had another wonderful Fall Harvest Festival at Mount Vernon. See you next year!
Try this outing
Difficulty Level: Easy That is, if you don’t count pushing everyone back up the hill in the stroller. If you have young kids, taking the mansion tour can be difficult as there are no strollers, no touching, no leaning, no shouting, no kicking, and no being children.
- Go early. If it’s a nice weekend, it can get really crowded.
- If you do get there early, do the mansion tour first. The line there is the longest as the day gets going.
- Free wagonrides start around noon near the entrance.
- The demonstration where the ponies trot around the 16 sided barn to thresh the wheat was one of the thrills this year. Check out the video below.
- Bring wipes for the apple roasting. That honey sauce is sticky as can be, and do you really want to be the 400th person to use one of the two wet rags they offer?
- The Mrs. Field’s pumpkin cookies are all that. They really are.
- Even if you’re on the edge of not needing a stroller anymore, bring one anyway. Off-roaders prefered for those steep gravel or wobbly cobbled paths. We were there long enough to shed layers and for the kids to get too tired to walk up the path at the end. It was nice to have a stroller as a shopping cart.
- Bring water bottles and possibly lunch. There’s quite a bit of walking. The cafeteria is fair. The sit-down restaurant is fun and atmospheric, but the food is overpriced for the quality.
- Neither I nor the kids has ever really enjoyed the harbor cruise. The best thing it has going for it is that it provides an opportunity to sit down.
- Go again. There are so many things to see and do that you probably won’t have much left in the tank to devote to the awesome museums. If you think you’ll come just once more this year, it’s worth getting the annual pass so you can come back and go to the mansion tour and children’s center at your leisure.
Fluffy Fun Factor (Kindergartener Rating): This is the best day of my life! Can we just go on the wagon ride one more time? Can we go to the museums?
Check out how excited Salty was by the pony trot.