Saturday, April 16, 2016

Rediscovering The Heard Museum

The last time I visited the Heard Museum in McKinney was when my son was very young. We visited a few of the small enclosures with birds of prey in the back and checked out the museum and the gift shop. It was an interesting place to visit.

Today I went mainly to check out the plant sale, just to see if there were any interesting or hard to find plants significant to local wildlife. The first announcement, no milkweed, pretty much the only plant I was looking for.

Milkweed plants have gotten really popular as news gets out that the population of monarch butterflies has been threatened in the last few years. It’s good to see people getting involved in nature.

I decided to check out the museum as well, it was ten dollars to get in and well worth it. My first thought was the different activities and events happening and that alone seemed to be a big improvement over what I remembered.

The learning center was a very interesting place for children who were running through the many rooms that included everything from fossils to live snakes.

When I got outside, the landscape made me think I had stepped into another place, far from an urban setting. There were big trees, shady areas and long beautiful stretches of lush green grass.

There were just enough people to make you feel like you weren’t completely by yourself but sparse enough to enjoy some solitude in nature. There are seven miles of hiking trails, very different terrains and lots of birds singing.

I got to listen to a bunch of crows screaming about an owl that hooted back in disgust. I finally saw it’s giant wings effortlessly fly through the thick branches and it was gone again as were the crows who seemed to have made their point.

There were benches all around, lots of things to learn, lots of interesting things to read about the area. There is a butterfly house, which was closed, but the native plants were marked and bits of information told you about the flora and fauna.

It was a perfect day to hike and a perfect day to disappear for a bit in the middle of a deep forest where the casual hiker can enjoy easy gravel walkways with beautiful views. I found a craw fish in a small puddle, watched blue jays and cardinals and felt like I had escaped, even just for a short time.

I got to rediscover  a place that was more beautiful than I remembered it. I was impressed with so many families sharing nature with their kids. I met several young volunteers and was inspired to one day volunteer for them. I left the Heard very impressed and even surprised what a beautiful oasis they 
created so close to Dallas just by protecting nature.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Artistgordon - Find me on