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Mildale Farm Fall Fest Set For Oct. 29
POSTED: 10/12/2005
A Fall Fest being planned by the Johnson County Park and Recreation District for the afternoon of Oct. 29 will give members of the public a second opportunity this year to explore the Mildale Farm property.

A number of fall-related activities are being planned for the event, all of which will be free to the public. A large pumpkin patch will be situated in front of the main barn. Children 12 and under can pick out a pumpkin and decorate it inside the barn with the help of staff from the Childrens Services Department. Cider and hot cocoa will also be provided in the barn, as will information on other District programs and activities. A tractor-drawn shuttle will take visitors to a fire circle in the south-central portion of the Mildale site, where they can roast marshmallows and enjoy storytelling by members of the District's Interpretive Staff. Staff from the Ernie Miller Nature Center will also lead nature walks to see some of the site's prairie habitat. Horse-drawn hayrides along a figure-eight route are also planned.

Catch-and-release fishing in any or all of seven ponds within the 158-acre area will also be offered during Fall Fest. While District fishing permits have been waived for this event, anglers 16 and older will still need to have a Kansas fishing license.

Visitors can also explore and picnic on the grounds. Restrooms will be available, but the property's two homes and other outbuildings will not be open during this event. The centerpiece of the 22-acre Mildale Farm property is the high-quality equestrian-style barn, which features peg construction and a hand-laid brick floor. Though designed with an equestrian motif, the barn has never been used for keeping animals and has been utilized as a rental location for social functions, including weddings, family gatherings, and other social and business events. Inquiries regarding information or reservations for Mildale Farm should be directed to Keri Sanborn at (913) 236-1266 or Jill Leiker at (913) 236-1236.

The event is scheduled from noon to 6 p.m. and will give interested parties access to the 158-acre site including the 22-acre rental property in southwest Johnson County as well as to about 136 acres which are actually part of the adjacent 578 acres of agricultural property, all of which was purchased by the District in February of this year. Visitors will be directed to park in the newly-improved large parking lot near Mildale Farm's main barn.

Rules for this event will be posted and will be the same as park rules in place on other District properties. Among them: no alcohol, pets must be on-leash, and vehicles must remain on roadways. Rangers will be on hand to enforce these as well as the catch-and-release fishing provision.

For this event, a one-way traffic route will be used by which visitors will enter through the main Mildale Farm entrance and exit via a service road that returns vehicles to 199th street to the west, just south of 56 Highway near the railroad tracks.

Mildale Farm is located at 35250 W. 199th St.. From the north, take Interstate 35 south to Exit 207. Turn left (south) and drive one mile to 199th Street. Turn right and proceed 3.5 miles to the Mildale Farm entrance. From the south, take Interstate 35 North to Exit 202. Turn left on Sunflower and proceed about two miles. Turn right on East Fourth in Edgerton and follow it for about three blocks. Turn right on Highway 56 Highway and make a second right on 199th Street. The farm entrance will be about a quarter-mile ahead on the left.

The Fall Festival follows a Mildale Farm Community Day which was conducted on June 4 and which drew more than 200 people. Johnson County Park and Recreation District officials have committed to conducting two public events per year at Mildale Farm.

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