Yesterday was the 35th annual carrot festival in Schenectady and we decided to go check it out. We weren’t completely sure what to expect from it, but since the publicity listed a petting zoo (goats!), falafel sandwiches (yum!), and carrot cake (of course!), we decided it was worth checking out. There was also the added bonus of it being only about a 5 minute drive away.
We got to the festival which looked quite busy as we arrived but we managed to navigate through the parking and find a place for the car. We had brought the stroller for Lewis which definitely made things easier as we did have to park a little ways off. We wandered through some craft booths on our way over to the petting zoo, but didn’t really find anything worth stopping for. (I love craft fairs, but don’t often actually buy anything. There was also a high proportion of jewelry sellers, and the only jewelry I wear is my wedding ring.) We also briefly stopped to watch the band that was playing, but it was quite loud so we decided not to stay near there for the sake of Lewis’ little ears.
The petting zoo was fairly small, we saw a couple alpacas and then visited the cute goats. Then we noticed a reptiles tent and went to check that out. At the entrance to the tent was an enclosure with turtles (tortoises?) which was pretty cool.
Lewis touched the turtle shell once but was more interested in trying to pick up the apples and carrots that were there for them to snack on. I’m not sure if he wanted to feed it to the turtle, or wanted to eat it himself, but I decided not to find out.
For some reason the only photos we took were of us looking at the turtles, so you get lots of turtle pictures.
Inside the tent were several lizards and snakes of various types. There were at least four different people there working, helping people look at and hold the animals and giving a little information about them if people were interested. Lewis was completely unsure what to think. He was very quiet and didn’t try to touch the animals at all. I’m not sure if he was nervous about the animals or just the closeness of strange people in the tent.
We also saw some llamas and some little chicks, both of which Lewis was quite interested in.
There were some other neat looking things for older kids, including a Home Depot tent with aprons for the kids and projects they could do. I think that this festival would be a lot more fun with Lewis in another year or three, when he is able to participate more in all the activities.
After seeing the animals we headed over to get some food. Chris and I had both eaten an early lunch at home while Lewis napped, but I wanted some falafel anyway and to see what else there was, and also wanted to get some kind of lunch for Lewis. Unfortunately the food tent was rather unorganized and they had run out of hot dog buns, pitas to go with the falafel and other things, and some of their other food options (and this was only around 2 in the afternoon, so still with several hours of festival left.) Eventually they came up with some pitas for us so Lewis and I shared some falafel and salad together. Chris chose not to get anything.
We had a fun time and I like the chance for Lewis to see some live animals and try some new foods. It was a little disappointing how unorganized parts of it were, especially the food area, but we still enjoyed the food once we got it. We will definitely consider going back in future years when Lewis will be able to get even more enjoyment out of everything!