Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Grant's Farm, South St. Louis County

Photo Credit: Google Maps Street View

10501 Gravois Rd
Saint Louis, MO 63123

Amenities: Tram ride through deer park, goat feeding, animal shows, carousel, various animals on display, camel rides

Website: http://anheuser-busch.com/index.php/our-heritage/grants-farm/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Grants-Farm/115646335118138

Grant's Farm is a fun place to spend the day with kids, with lots of fun activities. Admission to the park is free, but you pay per car for parking in their parking lot. (You can park for free along Grants Trail and walk to the entrance as well). When you arrive, you cross the street and get in line for the tram ride that takes you to the center of the park. Arrive early - the line can get VERY long! Strollers can be kind of a pain at Grant's Farm - the staff will place your stroller at the front of the tram and you'll get it when you get off at the main park. Occasionally though the strollers don't get on the same tram you are on and you have to wait for the next one to get your stroller off. They state that wagons and jogging strollers are not allowed, but I have seen people bring jogging strollers to the park.

The tram ride is about 15 minutes long and takes you through the Grant's Farm deer park, where various animal species roam freely. You'll see various species of deer, bison, antelope, ostrich and more.

Upon arriving at the center of the park, you exit the tram (grab your stroller if necessary) and head into the fun. You'll first see the small carousel and the goat feeding area. Feeding the goats is a favorite of children and adults alike, but beware, the goats can be very aggressive so you may not want to bring very young children into the goat enclosure. The goats are also known for nibbling on clothing and shoe laces! There's a small fee per bottle of milk to feed the goats. The carousel is small, and every kid in line wants to ride the one dragon. Young children must have an adult ride with them.

You'll see giant tortoises, parrots, eagles, elephants, kangaroos, camels, llamas, zebras, and more. There's an elephant show (free of change) where the keepers teach the audience a lot about the elephants and show off some of the things they can do, including walking on a balance beam and reaching their trunk straight up into the air.

Bring some quarters if you want to feed the llamas and camels, there is a food dispenser near their enclosures.

New in 2013 is camel rides! The cost is $5/child. The camels are led around the circle twice and each camel can hold up to 3 kids.

You cannot bring in outside food to the park, but there's a dining area with food choices that you'd expect - chicken strips, fries, etc. Adults over the age of 21 get two free beers from the hospitality center located in the dining area.

Past the dining area are the Clydesdale barns, and there is also a Clydesdale barn at the far end of the parking lot (I've never been in this one though because we are always so tired by the time we leave the park!).

Exit the center park and board the tram near the dining area. The trip back to the entrance and parking lot only takes about 5 minutes.

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