About 30 minutes from our home we have a gem of a place we like to visit:
Living Treasures Animal Park.
We have been visiting this hidden treasure for 15 years, beginning when Grace was just a wee lass, toddling around the park. When we first started visiting it wasn’t the same place it is today. Over the years it has grown, expanded, and improvements have been made, but that “small zoo” feel remains the same. My kids have always preferred Living Treasures to the Pittsburgh Zoo, due mainly to their close proximity to the animals and the interactions they can have feeding and petting the animals.
Interactions that aren’t possible at larger zoos.
We have so many sweet memories of visits to Living Treasures…
Memories of Great Grandpa Parmley feeding the animals with us, of field trips and “get togethers” with Aunt Kelly when Lydia was her only child. We have pictures of my kids, before they were old enough to start school, walking around, feeding the animals, and petting the goats.
Over the years Living Treasures has become less of a “hidden” gem and the crowds have grown, but even with the changes that have been made and the increase in popularity, it still remains a magical place in our hearts,
and a “must visit” destination when the cousins come for a visit!
Thursday morning we fed the kiddos breakfast, packed a picnic lunch, and drove over to Living Treasures Animal Park. When we arrived we purchased a couple buckets of feed and a few bags of carrots to feed the animals.
We spent 2 1/2 hours walking around the park feeding and petting animals. The kids were thrilled to see so many babies this late in the summer. They were especially thrilled by the newly born baby jaguar, which most agreed was the highlight of the zoo.
As the kids walked around they fed some of the animals, like the goats, deer, alpaca, and babies, by hand and other bigger animals by dropping feed down a tube which landed in a feeding bucket near the fence. This system of feeding keeps the kids’ little fingers safe but the animals in close proximity for easy viewing.
Everyone had a wonderful time feeding the animals!
When we had our fill of animal time we stopped at the gift shop where the kids enjoyed spending their gift money from G.G.
Then it was time for lunch. By this point everyone was hungry and ready to eat so we drove over to McConnell’s Mill State Park and had a picnic.
When we were done eating we took the kids down to the mill to walk around and explore the rocks, the waterfall, and the covered bridge. What a beautiful place!
Then it was home for dinner. (Kelly treated us to pizza…YUM!) and time for some nighttime fun…