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Guest Post from The Meanest Momma- Oxon Hill Farm Review

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Play Today DC is thrilled to have a guest post today from a friend of mine, Kendra aka The Meanest Momma. I don’t visit a new playground without checking her blog review first!
Kendra is a native Northern Virgininan who has been blogging about family, food, and frugal adventures in Northern Virginia for over a decade. Check out her blog, The Meanest Momma, for recipes, menu plans, playground reviews and more. 

Over spring break, I was looking for activities suitable for all three of my kids (ages 8, 6, and 4). I remembered hearing about Oxon Hill Farm, but didn’t know much about it. We decided to check it out one sunny spring morning and discovered a wonderful kid-friendly destination that everyone loved.

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Oxon Hill Farm is a working farm, operated by the National Park Service. It is located in Maryland, just across the Woodrow Wilson Bridge. It is easy to get to from the Northern Virginia suburbs and full of educational opportunities as well as plain old-fashioned fun.

It is a charming property, dotted with various farm buildings. The first thing we saw as we walked in was the dairy barn.

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At the center of the property, several buildings are clustered together, making for easy exploring with little kids. I’d recommend a jog stroller as the road is gravel and you’ll do a lot of walking on grass.

The administrative office/information center/gift shop is the building on the left. Next to the windmill is a Farm Museum, and behind that is a chicken coop. Further back is the historic Mount Welby home, built in the early 19th century.

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The windmill proved entertaining to my kids — they had a blast running around in circles, chasing its shadow.

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Inside the farm museum, we found lots of interesting equipment from days gone by.

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While climbing on tractors is fun, the real attraction at Oxon Hill is the animals.

We were first drawn to the large chicken coop, where chickens ranged free, both inside and outside the fence.

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One of the best features of Oxon Hill is that kids can actually get up close with the animals and “help” with the farm chores. Each day, there is an opportunity to feed the chickens and milk the cows. The daily schedule of events is posted on their website.

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When it’s not too crowded, kids can even help collect the eggs. There were too many kids the day we went, but we were still allowed inside to check out the coop.

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A huge Tom turkey shares the roost with the hens.

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After we fed the chickens, we headed over to the dairy barn to help milk the cows.

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Ranger Stephanie did a great job explaining how to milk a cow and assisting the kids who needed help. Every kid was thrilled — except my four year old, who had no interest in getting that close to the cow.

We also took part in a wagon ride, which gave us an opportunity to tour the larger property (and wagon rides are just plain fun for kids).

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Other things you’ll see on the farm include…

A scenic pond with ducks and geese (fenced so kids can’t get into it).

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A large pig pen with some of the friskiest pigs I have ever seen.

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A cute pony mule.

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A pair of beautiful (huge!) Belgian draft horses who were so gentle and friendly. My daughter was in horse heaven petting their sweet soft noses.

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Goats and Sheep – the kids probably spent 20 minutes “collecting wool” from the fence of their enclosure.

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There are also bunnies and a farm kitty.

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When we got tired of exploring, we ate our picnic lunch on the grounds. There are picnic tables scattered around the property as well as a hay barn that has picnic tables inside. A standalone building houses restrooms and a water fountain.

Inside the visitors center, there is a gift shop and a small interactive area for kids where they can draw pictures, handle nature objects, read books, etc.

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There were many great educational opportunities at the farm, but the real treasure was simply giving the kids the freedom to run free and explore. As a mom, I feel like many days are filled with me telling my kids “No”. Oxon Hill is a wonderful, laid back environment, where it’s easy to say “Yes!”

And the icing on the cake — everything is FREE! There is no admission to the park and no fees charged for any of the activities. In an area like ours where just about everything is so expensive, Oxon Hill was a wonderful find.

Oxon Hill Farm and Oxon Cove Park
6411 Oxon Hill Road
Oxon Hill, Maryland 20745
301-839-1176
http://www.nps.gov/oxhi/

Open daily from 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., except January 1, Thanksgiving Day, and December 25.

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