Pioneer Homestead gets ‘covered wagon’

The Friends of Dinosaur Hill Nature Preserve received a generous grant of $5,000 for the purchase of a cargo trailer to house and transport the Pioneer Homestead and Playground equipment for community events.

Since 1976 the Dinosaur Hill Pioneer Homestead and Playground has provided opportunities for children to play like yesterday. In the past many of Rochester’s heritage festivals and more recently Rochester Hills Museum events have included these old-time chores and games. Young pioneers are able to dress in early settler fashions to churn butter, gather firewood, grind corn, play in a haystack, build a log cabin beat a rug or scrub red long johns on a scrub board.  With chores completed children have time to toss a bean bag, walk on stilts, sing along with a music tree, ride the teeter totter and bowl with rutabagas.

This old fashioned fun necessitates many supplies and much equipment.  After assisting Friends with transport chores, volunteers from the Rochester Junior Woman’s Club invited the Friends of DHNP to apply for a grant from their organization.  Three checks were awarded at the spring meeting of the club.  Avon Players and the Rochester Symphony were also recipients of grants. The Rochester Junior Woman’s Club has been designated a Pinnacle Sponsor of the Friends of Dinosaur Hill for their support.

The first journey of the “Covered Wagon” was to the Rochester Hills Museum at Van Hoosen Farm for its Spring on the Farm program.  With transportation and storage challenges streamlined, the Friends of Dinosaur Hill look forward to other destinations in the future.  Schools or community groups interested in hosting the Pioneer Homestead and Playground should contact or Ginger Ketelsen at 248-651-1368.

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