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Oxon Cove Park & Oxon Hill Farm
Based on 6 traveler reviews
FAMILY FUN WITH WAGON RIDE & FARM ANIMALS
Oct 03, 2014 by: Maurene_K from Dover, New Hampshire
The Oxon Cove Park & Oxon Hill Farm site is a National Historic District operated by the National Park Service across the Potomac River from Alexandria, VA in Oxon Hill, MD. Oxon Cove Park has a diverse ecosystem that includes wildlife such as bald eagles, deer, wild turkeys, and wide variety of songbirds. Among other uses, Oxon Hill Farm was home to the Dr. Samuel DeButts family from 1805 to 1843. It was named Mount Welby Plantation. Later, it was run as a therapeutic hospital farm by the government-owned St. Elizabeth’s Hospital. The DeButts white manor house still stands. Today, Oxon Hill Farm is run as a working farm museum with several outbuildings to explore. It’s a great place for youngsters and adults alike to see and have a hands-on experience with farm animals. As with many NPS sites, admission to this attraction is free. The NPS runs programs that include Meet the Dairy Cow, the Chicken & the Egg Program, Wagon Ride, and Park's Past Tour. When we arrived at the visitor center of Oxon Cove Farm at 10:00 AM, it was time for Meet the Dairy Cow during which the cows were milked in the barn we’d passed on the way down the hill when walked from the parking lot. At 11:00 AM, there was the Wagon Ride to the undeveloped back portion of the property. The youngsters really liked this. It was a very pleasant ride on a sunny 82º day. With a variety of trees on the route, it should be a colorful scenic foliage ride in October. Next, there was time for a short walk down to the pens to see the pigs, sheep, cows, chickens, goat, and two beautiful Belgian draft horses named Becky and Dixie. Then, there it was time for the Chicken & the Egg Program. The "Chicken" portion of the program was feeding the chickens. Everyone was allowed into the fenced in pen and given some feed. There was a variety of breeds. One interesting black-and-white speckled chicken appeared to be a Plymouth Rock Chicken. The youngsters got very excited over getting up close to the chickens. One enthusiastic youngster managed to toss three handfuls directly on the middle of a chicken’s back. With that degree of accuracy in her aim, we joked that she should be signed up for a professional baseball team’s pitching staff. The “Egg” portion of the program involved the children gathering eggs inside the coop and bringing them down to the pigpen where they became lunch for the pigs. The pigs that had started the day off clean about 10:00 AM but were half covered with mud by feeding time. At the Visitor Center, there was the bookstore and a Kid's Activity Corner with books, puzzles, and coloring, games that had farm and environmental topics. That’s also where to start this park’s Junior Ranger Program. When we arrived at the Visitor Center, a friendly gray tabby named Kitty was hanging out. My friend picked her up and took her out onto the porch where there were two rocking chairs. Kitty sat in my friend’s lap for about 15 minutes. I also observed that Kitty was also good with a 4-year-old boy. For those who participate in the Passport to Your National Parks Program, the location of the cancellation station is at the Visitor Center. There were four cancellations. One was expected; three were extra bonuses. They read: ● Oxon Cove Park - Oxon Hill, MD ● Oxon Cove Park - Passport 25th Anniversary ● Underground RR Freedom Network - Oxon Cove Park ● Star-Spangled Banner NHT - Oxon Hill, MD Although outside Washington, DC, this park falls under jurisdiction of the National Capital Parks unit of the National Park Service, so it’s in the National Capital Region, not the Mid-Atlantic Region, of the Passport. Since most of the paths are level enough, I would say that most of the park is wheelchair accessible. Although there were several handicapped parking spaces in the main parking lot, there was one handicapped parking space adjacent to the visitor center. I suggest calling the rangers ahead to see if that’s open the public or if it’s just for park staff and/or park volunteers. Restrooms are in a separate building near the visitor center. If you found this review helpful, kindly click YES below.
Aug 25, 2014 by: Keke16 from Washington DC, District of Columbia
a very good place to go at the weekend with friends and / or family. Especially during the hot summer sun.
Jul 30, 2014 by: John P from Fairfax, Virginia
We truly enjoyed visiting this farm site which was filled with animals, old barns, houses, work tools, etc.
A Working Farm Right Across the River
May 27, 2014 by: jeffl499 from Alexandria, VA
A beautiful 19th century farm that has been resurrected and preserved by the National Park Service. Set on a hill overlooking the Potomac, it features cows, pigs, horses, chickens and even a mule. The full range of old farm equipment and implements along with small museums brings farming alive. Join park rangers to gather eggs from the chickens, milk the cows and take a wagon ride around the acreage. Stop for the tour of the magnificent farm house perched on a hill in the center of the farm. Started by a prominent family in the early part of the 19th century, Oxon Hill was expanded to feed the patients at St. Elizabeth Hospital in Washington, wounded soldiers from the Civil War and then back to supplying the Hospital in the 1950s. Helpful rangers make your visit both pleasant and informative.
Super place to visit!
Jul 21, 2012 by: mac600 from virginia beach
When in the area you must stop by! A great park with working farm. Beautiful! We would have stayed longer if it wasn't so unusually hot!
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