Rockin' the Rocks with Surprise Wanderers
The day started with a riddle and a surprise: "What do some walls, rivers and shops have in common?" The kids would find out the answer was ROCKS and the surprise was 2 very special "guest wanderers"that I had invited to join us.
ROCK WALLS: The first stop of the day was Peak Experience, our awesome local rock climbing gym on Midlothian for a morning of climbing the rocks. The day was made more special when two of my kiddos favorite teachers popped out from hiding in the bathroom to come and play with us. It was "Game On" as we all cheered each other on to climb 50 foot rock walls and for sure the 3 adults were not going to be bested by two kids! ;) (Thanks Kim and Kelly for joining us!)
(Note: My daughter caught the rock climbing bug that day as so this Fall, she signed up to join the Junior Climbing Team at Peak Experiences and has been rock climbing weekly with them all year! I am super impressed by the entire program and Kait, their awesome head coach of the Junior team!) Peak also has the best slogan ever: "We make kids tired!" http://peakexperiences.com/
From Peak, we grabbed some sub sandwiches and headed to Pony Pasture to picnic on the rocks and do some rock jumping on the gorgeous James River.
Richmond Outside shares: "The scenery alone at Pony Pasture is a big draw for visitors, with huge boulders with plenty of unique potholes and nooks shaped by years of erosion from the rapids. The rapids at Pony Pasture are considered Class II, and the park has ample parking."
ROCK SHOPS: Packards Rock Shop
Our final stop of the day was Packards Rock Shop. Three generations have run this shop and while the shop looks tiny on the outside, it is filled to the brim with hundreds, if not thousands, of different rocks, stones, precious gems and fossils. His rock prices are super reasonable on many items (so it is doable to give your kids a couple of dollars and let them pick out geodes to bring home). You really will feel like you have stepped back in time in this shop!
The best part of the store is the owner and his stories. We asked him what are the most unusal items he had in the store and soon he was pulling out extremely rare meteor rock, actual large dinosaur bones (which he let the kids hold), and more. He was incredibly kind and extremely knowledgeable about almost any stone we asked about. My kids were mesmorized! And again they learned that if you ask people their stories nicley and politely, they will share with you all sorts of new and exciting things.
(This quaint shop is located at 13131 Midlothian Turnpike, Midlothian, VA 23113. Phone: 804-794-5538.)