Children will be riding high at Howell Living History Farm on Saturday, March 11, when the farm’s big workhorses will be drafted for “pony ride” duty.
Riders will not sit on saddles, nor will they ride bareback, but will sit atop fully harnessed, three-quarter-ton workhorses. The horses won’t mind, according to the farmers, since giving rides is easier than pulling the plows and wagons used to run the 130-acre “living history” farm.
The program is intended to give children a taste of early 20th-century farm life. So, in order to get a ride, children must first do their farm chores. The list includes helping farmers sweep out horse stalls, clean harnesses, fill water troughs and make repairs to pasture fences.
The rides will be offered from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on a first-come, first-served basis. Riders must be between the ages of 5 and 12 years old, without exception. Parking and admission are free.
Howell Farm is owned by the County of Mercer and maintained by the Mercer County Park Commission. It is located on Valley Road, just off Route 29, in Hopewell Township. The GPS address is 70 Woodens Lane, Hopewell Township, NJ 08530. Visiting hours are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday.