Heritage Animals

There are many photo ops at Heritage Farm Museum including many of animals. They have a small petting zoo as well as a few larger animals throughout the property. The collection includes a bison, some goats, pigs, turtles and even a peacock.

I especially liked the peacock.

Then there was the camel. It was like he was waiting for me to come snap a picture.

Llamas always look like they’re giving you the side eye.

I believe this is a Scottish Highland Cow. Love the hairdo!

As you might guess, out of all the fantastic creatures, I still liked the cat best. Notice his sign says not to pick him up without permission.

Want to read more about this family friendly destination? Click here.

Details At Heritage Farm

My recent trip to Heritage Farm Museum near Huntington, West Virginia resulted in a number of pictures. I thought you might like to see a few more shots.

For example, this display of seed packets gave me pause. Each one is a delightful little piece of artwork. I have since learned that you can actually still buy Hart’s Seeds. They’ve been around since 1892. You can read their history and shop at their website. They are owned by fifth and sixth generation members of the Hart family, a remarkable accomplishment in today’s society.

While I don’t know a gosh darn thing about mechanics, I’m always fascinated by machinery, especially gears and wheels and things. Such technical language, I know.

I also am always distracted by hood ornaments. We really need to bring back the hood ornament. I mean, really, modern cars are so dull and this is just fun!

The general store was packed full of goodies including these advertising tins.

This Red Rock Cola sign was one of a few old metal signs on the front porch of the general store. Red Rock was founded in 1885 and was once so significant they got Babe Ruth to endorse it. Yes! The Bambino himself drank Red Rock. Sadly, the brand began to decline in the late fifties and eventually disappeared altogether. Luckily, an Indiana Company owns the formulas and is again distributing Red Rock drinks in 12 ounce glass bottles.

This place has several air conditioned museums. One had this fantastic display representing a fifties era soda fountain. There were a couple of pinball machines displayed including this western themed game from 1949. I really enjoy commercial art of this era and couldn’t help but wonder how amazing this would look in action.

Finally, I liked this cherub who was perched on a rafter high above me in the blacksmith’s shop. They do hot, dangerous work in there and I hope he looks out for all the volunteers and workers.

If you want to know more about my Heritage Farm Museum visit, click here to read all about it.

Hillbilly Hotdogs

If you’re looking for a slice of Americana and a unique dining experience, look no further than Hillbilly Hotdogs at Lesage, West Virginia. It’s between Gallipolis, Ohio and Huntington, West Virginia on Route 2.

They specialize in gourmet hot dogs but do it under the guise of pure Appalachia complete with lots of junk, an outhouse (it’s just for looks) and dining rooms made out of old school buses. They even have a weddin’ chapel on site if you wish to tie the knot with your kissin’ cuzzin.

Let’s stop here for a moment. First, it’s more than hot dogs. They have sandwiches, salads, deserts and even a vegan menu so I was able to have a cool gourmet hot dog too.

Second, I’m not a fan of anything that exploits the Appalachian region or our people as I live in Appalachian Ohio where it feels like someone is always ready to put us down. However, this place is all in good fun and and is own and run by locals. You know how it’s ok for you to say something bad about your relative but it’s not ok for someone else to say it?

Same theory.

Anyway….. the place dates to the late nineties. From the road, it looks like a shack with some picnic tables amidst a sea of motorcycles and cars of all make and model.

Look closer though and there’s no telling what you’ll find. The yard is filled with stuff – from old collectibles to pure junk and a lot of kitsch thrown in for good measure.

I ventured down on Friday with a friend. They have outdoor dining space but I wanted to eat in one of the school buses so that’s what we did.

I got the Lockwood veggie dog, fries and a drink for about $7.50. The dog was a lot to handle and a little messy to eat but I didn’t complain. I liked the creativity of lettuce, onion, tomato, shredded cheddar, mustard and ketchup on a veggie dog. It also comes with slaw but I asked to hold that.

My friend said his food was good too. He got something with hot dog sauce, some hot sauce and jalapeños because he evidently enjoys punishing himself!

We ate inside one of the two old school buses turned dining cars. I watched with interest as the line never really went down and people kept coming the entire time we were there.

This place has received a ton of press over the years but none more influential than a feature on the tv show Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives. This show practically turned this unusual roadside hot dog stand into a household name.

Want to learn more? Click here to visit their website! Come back tomorrow and I’ll tell you about the other thing we did while in the area.

Heritage Farm Museum

Yesterday I told you about my quest to Hillbilly Hotdogs in West Virginia. Since we were driving all that way, I suggested we visit the Heritage Farm Museum just twenty minutes down the road.

This place was a labor of love for a couple who enjoyed antiques and had a passion for telling the story of life in Appalachia. They acquired log structures and relocated them to this property to set up as a village. Some structures are for lodging while most are open to walk through including a church and a mercantile.

There are seven museums that tell the story of life in Appalachia through the years. Technology, transportation, toys and West Virginia industry are among the topics discussed in these museums. They also have a petting zoo and a tractor-pulled wagon train ride tour that are part of your admission ticket.

I liked the peacock!

There’s plenty for kids to do and more adventurous souls might enjoy some of their adventure activities like the zip line tour or rock climbing wall which are offered for an additional price.

And no, that is not my brand of adventure so I skipped that stuff and kept my feet on firm ground. They also have a big tree house accessible either by bridges or by going through a short ropes course. My friend took the challenge while I stuck to the regular bridges. He was quite pleased with himself and I was happy that I understood my limitations.

Once in the treehouse, you have great views of the village and there are a few other fun things to do from up there.

They do serve food on site and have clean restrooms. This is the kind of place where you could spend a few hours like we did or pass an entire day. I have camera photos and a few more stories to share from here another day so stay tuned. Meanwhile, visit their website if you want details like seasonal hours and admission information.