Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Bring on Those Gators

Have you ever seen an albino alligator?  I have!  It was unreal, literally, as if I was just looking at a fake all white gator.  It was an interesting sight and prettier than the typical green gators you see, that is, if you can call a gator pretty.

We visited St. Augustine's Alligator Farm a couple weekends ago since we thought our son, Brody, would enjoy it.  He was excited to go and we all enjoyed it, even our youngest, Brielle.  She got scared a few times, mostly when the gators would open their mouths.  She is not too fond of any kind of animals (or many humans) but she survived.

Who wouldn't fear those jaws?

It was a hot day but we powered through walking around the zoo.  There were various alligators and crocodiles to gawk at as well as turtles, birds and other reptiles.  I took several pictures so Brody could remember this trip.  I've been here many years ago but don't remember much about it and I don't think my parents have many pictures from that visit.  

Some facts about the Alligator Farm:

  • Founded by George Reddington and Felix Fire in 1893 at South Beach.
  • Only facility in the world exhibiting living specimens of all 23 currently recognized species of crocodilian.
  • A new attraction opened in 2011, the zip-line called Crocodile Crossing where guests can have a more exciting experience from a different view.
(The History of St. Augustine's Alligator Farm Zoological Park, www.alligatorfarm.com).

I think they were just as hot as we were.  

There was a kid's area so we took a short break from all the exploring.

"Why so serious?"  


She carries her baby doll everywhere.
"It wasn't me!"
She's pointing at the funny-looking birds in the photos above hers.

This was one huge tortoise

Galapagos Tortoise

No worries - it's not a real zebra.

They were not in the mood to entertain us.  

The feeding area 

I would not want to fall in here.

The kids love looking at maps so they insisted on navigating.

Brody's current obsession: dinosaurs

Brody was really interested in this part of the zoo...

He loves learning about dinosaurs and fossils.

She was trying to step into the snake's den for a closer look.
I think the snake was more scared of her.

The most dangerous animal that was at the zoo:  my kid!

We ended our visit with Brody taking home a pet gator.
This one is a two-year-old (same age as Brielle so now we have two toddlers at home)
and it weighs five pounds.  

Just kidding, of course.  We didn't take it home because
Brody said it was too heavy to carry!

Overall, it was an interesting, new and educational experience.  The heat was awful and we were drenched in sweat so be prepared if you decide to visit during the burning summer days.  Some things you may want to consider bringing: lots of water, a fan, a misting spray, a towel, extra clothes and sunscreen.

We also visited Castillo De San Marcos National Monument after our trip to the Alligator Farm.  Stay tuned for those photos soon!  See below for free admission here this weekend.

Meanwhile, check out some things to do around Jax, FL this week:

  • National Lemonade Day today: 7-Eleven giving away free Snapple Lemon Daze drinks with a mobile coupon on their app for smartphone users.
  • Aug. 23rd: Reel Fun Night at Town Hall Park 6-10 PM.  Go here for more info.
  • Aug. 24th: Stay 'N Country Ranch Open House 12-3 PM.  Go here for more info.
  • Aug. 25th: Free National Park admission all day.  Go here for more info.
Summer break for us is over since school started this week for my son, Brody, who is now in kindergarten. Where did time go???  My schedule is now being refined as we adjust to the new changes.  He was only in preschool three times out of the week last year so five times a week for us is a bit more hectic and definitely more exhausting!  

Have you been to the Alligator Farm?  Do you have a child who just started school, how are you handling the new routine?  

This week will probably fly by, make the most of it!  Take care, until next time...