|Entrance to Mammoth Cave|
The size of this cave is really amazing, making it a must-see cave. Before you take any trips with children, I would suggest you read the book Journey to the Bottomless Pit by Elizabeth Mitchell. This book tells the story of slave who gave tours of the caves beginning in the 1830's and the many discoveries he made. I was thankful that a teacher friend of mine recommended it to me before we went. My girls really enjoyed the story and once in the cave, were excited to see all the discoveries Stephan Bishop made. And, their ears really perked up and they listened to the tour guide speak of his discoveries. (Thanks, Becky!)
We took both the Historic Tour (moderate) and the Frozen Niagara Tour (easy). My girls, ages 4 and 7 had no problem keeping up with these tours. However, with the 550 steps, my problem knee wasn't too happy with me.
Of course, we took our little travel trailer. We stayed at the Jellystone Campground, Mammoth Caves. My husband and I knew going into this that it was not our type of campground (you know, quiet, peaceful, hear the birds singing) but knew it offered a lot for the children, including a pool, waterslide, mini-golf and other activities. Turns out we were there for one of their big, annual events--water wars!
The calender instructed campers to bring their water guns and I had thrown ours in for good measure. We had no idea what to expect, but by 7am Saturday, the campground was hopping with excitement. People brought kiddie pools, huge totes, water balloons, homemade water blasters, super soakers, buckets, you name it! By the start of water wars at 1pm, people were going nuts. As my husband said, the adults were acting like kids, running around soaking people. If you were unrmed, people pretty much would leave you alone, but if you had a gun, water balloon or made faces, it was WAR! The man next to us had stocked up 80 gallons of water at the start of the wars! People rode around in golf carts or the back of trucks and would attack those lined up along the roads who were soaking them.
|My girls getting wet. Notice how much water is on the road.|
|My girls and their campground friend getting involved in the war.|
|Ride 'em, Cowboy!|
|Don't think for a minute that he was turning his back on them, there were firing squads on both sides of the road.|
I will have to say, I hadn't laughed so hard in a long time!
Beside the water wars, Jellystone had many other planned activities, including tie dye shirts, crafts, candy bar bingo, marshmallow stuffing contest, dancing, movies and karaoke. There were numerous appearances from Yogi, Boo Boo and Cindy, too. All in all, we had a fun time and the kids are talking about next year! Even my husband and I would like to go back again.