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Devin Trefry

Kids Gone Wild!

by Devin Trefry, on Thu, 14 Jul 2011 | 1 comment

Another class trip tale to inspire your next family outing.


The sun was shining outside and I felt like a celebrity as I sat near the front of the classroom of my daughter's primary class. I caught several little eyes staring my way, but shyly looking away when I smiled back at them. Minutes passed as we waited for the bus to arrive, giving time for a few of them to become bold enough to smile back or give a small wave.

Everyone was excited for their first ever class trip to the Shubenacadie Wildlife Park! I'd learned from my previous experience helping out with my son's grade 2 class trip that it's best to sit closer to the front of the bus (smidge quieter and a smoother ride). Upon arrival we were greeted by park staff: a wildlife interpreter and a couple of peacocks. One peacock roused the crowd by perching on top of the washroom building while the other proudly presented the sign at the park's trail-head.

My group of four girls was off like a shot once we had the "go ahead" to begin exploring. It felt a bit more like the amazing race than a leisurely day at the park, but as the girls got to a comfortable lead they slowed a little bit and began to appreciate their surroundings.The hissing Canada "Mother" Goose protecting her young might have contributed to the slowing down a bit too. 

I was excited to see the cougars were up and moving around while we were there (referring to the feline's and not the forty-something singles ladies of course). Other times I had visited the park it was mid afternoon on a hot day, when a lot of the animals were resting in the shade. 

We saw deer, wolves, coyotes, otters, ducks, swans, eagles, hawks, beavers, rabbits, bears, raccoons, and of course many more animals, but the most feared of all were... the skunks!  My daughter was pretty concerned about visiting the skunk habitat. We had a large one living under our shed a couple of summers ago that maybe had something to do with it. 

As an experiment I decided to pay particular close attention to what animals at the park were of most interest to my group of girls, and my findings were actually quite amusing. Aside from the peacock on the washroom roof, it was a random squirrel and butterfly that stole the show - I had to laugh. For me it was the cougars and the bears. 

The Shubenacadie Wildlife Park is definitely a must for any visitor to Nova Scotia. The trails are well shaded, and wheel chair accessible; there's a great variety of birds and wildlife to see and the enclosures offer excellent viewing. A few other amenities that we didn't take advantage of during our visit included the Greenwing Legacy Wetland Interpretive Centre and Trails and the massive playground and picnic park on-site.

Other nearby family attractions to include in your day-trip to the wildlife park:

  • The Shubenacadie Tin Shop Museum - the only one of its kind in Eastern Canada.
  • Mastodon Ridge - great photo op here with the Mastodon (located half-way between the North Pole and the Equator) and you have to check out the awesome gift store "The Ridge      Shop". Their selection of unique jewelry is exceptional! 
  • Stewiacke River Park - A quiet place for a picnic. Let the kids run around and play on the playground.  Maybe launch a canoe for an afternoon outing! 

3 girlsand a bear.jpg


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    by Jo-Ann on, July 15, 2011 6:52 PM

    love that part about the cougars....ahemmm..not that I am one by any means ..but I found it amusing..LOL