It’s a small blogging world around here. And I experienced it firsthand on a visit to Potomac Overlook Regional Park in Arlington a couple of weeks ago. I got the idea to go there from No Monsters in My Bed when a friend and I were looking for a new place to take our little ones to play outside on a nice day. Then, upon our arrival at the playground right next to the small parking area, I saw some familiar faces, adorable little ones that I recognized from Not-So-SAHM. It turned out their mom, Rebecca, and I both ended up at the park on the recommendation of Darcy (who writes No Monsters). What can I say… great minds think alike. 😉
Not only was it neat to run into one of my blogging compadres, it was also helpful — she had been there a while and gave me the lowdown on what to see and do at the park (read her review here), which included trail hikes and the Nature Center. Since the kids were already immersed in playground action, we hung out there before venturing further.
The playground is pretty simple — a small area containing a log tree house with a small climbing wall, a steep and fast slide, and a double slide; picnic tables; and a couple of random exercise apparatus — but it kept the kids entertained for quite awhile.
We finally convinced the kids to move on by asking them if they wanted to see some animals; we knew from talking to Rebecca that there were live (and alive-looking) creatures on exhibit at the Nature Center, just a 300-meter walk down the road from the playground.
Once inside, the kids immediately stopped to ogle an exhibit (not live) near the entrance. From there, we headed downstairs to see the turtles and snakes in terrariums before entering the Kids Cave, a small room full of hands-on nature-related activities.
When we left the Nature Center, we saw a sign for the live bird exhibit, so we walked up a short path to see a couple of owls and a hawk. A park ranger explained they had been rescued, but their injuries prevented them from being released back into the wild, so they’re now permanent residents of the park.
By that time, we were all hungry and decided to head to nearby Italian Store (one of our all-time family faves!) and save a hike for another visit.
There definitely will be one, as Potomac Overlook is one to put on the go-to list for an easy and free outing, both outdoors and in.