August 30, 2017

August Amarillo Adventures

We arrived back in Amarillo after a little over 6 weeks of travel. Dave had to start training right away, so the kids and I were left to explore some of the city on our own. We made trips out to the Amarillo Zoo, the Discovery Center, the Botanical Gardens, WTAMU campus and a few different parks and splash pads. There aren't quite as many opportunities here as we had in Utah, and Sophie has really been missing her weekly trips to the aquarium, but it was fun to find some new places to visit and enjoy.

AMARILLO ZOO

When I looked up directions to the zoo, Google informed me that most guests spend less than an hour here and that was pretty accurate! It's a nice zoo, but small and we were easily able to see everything and get home in plenty of time for lunch. There is free admission on Mondays though, so this will be a fun spot for our little family to visit.

One of the featured local species, and mascot for WT - the buffalo!


Turtles and snakes are always a favorite of Sophie's



The enclosures aren't very large, but at least that makes it easy to see the animals



There is also a sand pit that the kids enjoy digging in when the weather is nice


All worn out - this is when Davey gave up his morning nap, so he often falls asleep in the car if we are out around lunch time
bota


DON HARRINGTON DISCOVERY CENTER

Right now we are able to visit the Discovery Center for free admission with our Thanksgiving Point membership. When it expires in February we'll probably get a family pass here. It's no Curiosity Museum, but there were a few fun areas for the kids and traveling exhibits come in every few months to change things up. They have free movies that play every hour, so I took the kids to one about bugs. Turns out it was the same video I saw on a field trip at the Seattle Science Center back when I was in Jr. High almost 20 years ago!


AMARILLO BOTANICAL GARDENS

The gardens share a parking lot with the Discovery Center and one of the better parks, so we decided to go check it out one day. They were beautiful and the kids loved all the flowers and critters, but unfortunately all that vegetation also meant mosquitoes EVERYWHERE 😬 Next time we will definitely bring bug spray. The kids would have likes to stay longer, but I kind of hustled us through so we wouldn't get too many bites.



Sophie with a snail she "rescued" from a rock near the stream





WEST TEXAS ACTIVITY CENTER

We made a trip south down to Canyon, TX to visit Dave at the university. We saw his new office, I picked up my spouse ID card and we got our family pass to the activity center. At the center there is an exercise room, huge gym, racquetball courts, climbing wall, bowling alley, and a pool! Dave is planning on working out at the gym after classes each day, and we will probably visit as a family a couple times a month to swim.


SPLASH PADS

The splash pads in Amarillo shut off at the beginning of September, so we tried to make good use of them before they were done for the year. Sophie has a great time in the water, but Davey is still warming up to the concept of spraying fountains and unexpected blasts to the face. School for the big kids had already started so we were often the only people there.



Of course the snake was her favorite feature





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