Who said learning
can’t be fun?
There’s nothing more exciting for a student than a field trip…the anticipation, the event itself and, not to forget, time away from school! Toledo and its surrounding communities have a wealth of information and knowledge that’s ready to be shared with classrooms. Attractions, museums and parks flank our city, and they’re ready to engage our schoolchildren.
The 577 Foundation
577 East Front Street
The picturesque views of the Maumee River and elegant gardens surround this hidden treasure. The small farm was purchased by Duane and Virginia Stranahan in 1935. The family estate housed pigs, chickens, cattle, horses and victory gardens for each of the couple’s six children. When the river estates began to sub-divide, Virginia donated the property in order to keep views and land available for the city and its surrounding communities. Gardening programs and tours of the land are available for students. This spot is perfect for pre-schoolers and the one-hour tour provides an interactive and educational experience.
29100 West River Road
1,200 American soldiers held off and defeated British forces and their allies during those fateful ten days in 1813. Now visitors can piece together not only a large part of Northwest Ohio’s history, but of America’s history as well. Costumed interpreters lead students through the Fort giving detailed narrative. Classes can learn about the causes and effects of frontier wars, how regional geography affected the War of 1812 and daily activities of the time, such as how to do laundry by hand. Tours are modified by grade level and have been developed to complement Ohio’s social studies standards.
Wood County Historical
Center and Museum
13660 County Home Road
In 1865 the Wood County Board of Commissioners agreed to build a poor farm. The Home, as it was referred to, opened its doors in 1869 when six local residents from the County Insane Farm in Perrysburg moved in. The farm spans across 150 acres and was turned into a self-sufficient farm by those physically able residents. Several structures on the property still stand along with those that have been added to the museum over the years. The infirmary, lunatic house, granary and power house are all available for guided tours. The Museum’s Suitcase Program is specifically designed to engage students about the grounds and the history of Northwest Ohio.
Wintergarden/St. John’s Nature Preserve Rotary Nature Center
615 South Wintergarden Road
Local birds, native ecosystems, human impact and survival skills are all on the menu of programs at Wintergarden/St. John’s Nature Preserve in Bowling Green. The Preserve has programs designed for all ages, from pre-K to adults. Exploration hikes are designed to develop an appreciation for nature while utilizing a variety of senses. The naturalist staff is on hand to teach students about a variety of topics such as natural history, social studies and science. Service learning projects are also available for students to assist the staff in activities ranging from seed collection to removing weeds. You can even take advantage of their Experiments Program, which allows students and educators to study plant diversity or do germination studies.
The Toledo Naturalists
Owls, Mushrooms and Butterflies, OH MY! You will have the opportunity to see a wide variety of nature’s finest, thanks to the TNA. Guided tours given by local experts teach students, both young and old, about the graces of the wildlife in Northwest Ohio. Owl watching at Oak Openings or hunting for snakes, salamanders and toads are only a few of the programs available. Programs are held at The Andersons Activities Center located at 1833 South Holland Sylvania Road.
Willis B. Boyer Ship Museum
26 Main Street
Get ready to set sail! On July 1, 1911, crowds gathered to watch the world’s largest bulk freighter, “Queen of the Lakes.” The ship had its first maiden voyage carrying 12,650 net tons of coal from Toledo to Sheboygan, Wisconsin. The ship has had a long distinguished career in the Great Lakes freight industry and was renamed the Willis B. Boyer in 1969. The ship was acquired by the City of Toledo in 1986 and is now docked at International Park in the exact spot where she loaded for the first time in 1911. The Museum is open April 19 through October 31 seven days a week. Guided group tours are offered and cost $4.00 per person.
The Toledo Museum of Art
2445 Monroe Street
Step into a world of medieval knights or view a graceful setting sun at the Toledo Museum of Art. The Museum has always been a favorite of both students and educators favorite in the Toledo area. Offering programs, tours and demonstrations for students since its opening in 1901, the Museum’s tours are free. Docent guided tours are also available to engage students within curriculums of art and music.
Wildwood Manor House
5100 W. Central Avenue
Tucked into the woods of the Wildwood Preserve is the grand Georgian Colonial home commissioned by R.A. Stranahan and his wife, Page. The home was designed and built in the heart of the Great Depression by Mills, Rhines, Bellman and Nordhoff Inc., a Toledo architecture firm. It was erected by 100 local workers. Tours of the 30,000 square foot mansion are offered, as well as of the grounds and surrounding buildings Private tours are available during the week.
5100 W. Central Avenue
Allow students to take a peek back in time. The one-room brick school house from 1893 was once located at Corey Road and Springbrook Drive, and can now be found at the Wildwood Preserve. Lessons are taught by the school marm who incorporates information about what life was like in 1893. Oh, and don’t forget a little reading, writing and arithmetic. The program runs between 60 and 90 minutes and can fit any busy schedule. The school house program is $1.00 per person for Lucas County groups and $3.00 per person for out of county groups.
2700 Broadway Street
Come roar with the lions, swim with the fish or swing from the vines! The Toledo Zoo has been an educational and fun source for school children from all over the state. Students from kindergarten through the twelfth grade will get to experience the wide variety of educational stimuli the Zoo has to offer. Get hands on experience by having contact with live animals! The Zoo has discounted group rates and even special opportunities for homeschooling programs.
1 Discovery Way
Anything you might be able to imagine is what they’ll have waiting for you at Imagination Station! Jump in and glimpse the world of oil refining and solar energy at the Station’s Energy Factory. Try LIVE Report, an exhibit that features a mock BCSN TV news studio, or even take a ride on the high wire cycle! The Imagination Station has plenty of activities to choose from and even traveling special exhibits. Interactive demonstrations on topics ranging from motion to sound, from combustion to the scientific method are ready and waiting! You can make reservations online, and be sure to find out what’s happening at one happening spot in Toledo!
5403 Elmer Drive
Whether you’re an early sprout or a high school student, Toledo Botanical Gardens has something for you! Programs for little ones range from butterfly wings to how a garden weathers the heat, colder months and storms. Growing Science sets the stage for first through sixth graders to explore the interdependence of plants and animals, ponds and to even have a worm’s view! Pioneer living is targeted for all grade levels from kindergarten to sixth grade. This program takes visitors to the Peter Navarre cabin located on the grounds and provides them with insight on pioneer life and homesteading in the early 1800s. Early registration is recommended, especially for spring days!
Fort Industry Square, Suite 1A
136 Summit St.
Come see why Toledo is called The Frog City at this museum dedicated entirely to the jumping amphibians. This unique museum features over 400 frog and frog-related displays from singing frogs to froggy clocks to frog-shaped telephones. The museum even has an “adopt a frog” program where frogs can be taken home on loan for a short time and returned with pictures of its adventures. Suggested donations are $1 per person and $2 per family.
6832 Convent Boulevard
See the true starry, starry night at the Appold Planetarium at Lourdes College. The Planetarium features SciDome, a single projector fulldome video system which allows a real-time 3D sky simulation, fulldome shows and multi-media presentations. The amazing technology delivers the audience precise astronomical details and has excellent educational opportunities. Reservations are strongly encouraged.
Harroun Community Park
5500 Main Street
Did you know Ohio was the most active state for the Underground Railroad? The Lathrop House in Sylvania, Ohio still stands today in Harroun Community Park and was once a safe haven for runaway slaves on their way to begin new lives in Canada. The house was built in 1853 by Lucian Lathrop, an early advocate for equality. The Lathrop House is recognized by the National Trust for Historic Preservation and the Underground Railroad by the Friends of Freedom/Ohio Underground Railroad Association. Two lantern tours take place at the site every year and historians are available for outreach programs.
The Butterfly House of Whitehouse
11455 Obee Road
Get ready to flutter with science and an exploration of nature. The Butterfly House in Whitehouse offers students a chance to learn about habitats, life cycles and gardening tips to attract butterflies to your backyard. The House contains over 1,000 butterflies from North and South America. Students can observe the butterflies in their natural setting as they flutter about. Each week a new species of butterfly is introduced, giving The Butterfly House a chance to have variety throughout the seasons.
The Canal Experience
13827 US 24 West
Students can see for themselves what its like to have a mule named Sal and go 15 miles on the Erie Canal. Take a tour on The Volunteer, a reproduction mule-drawn canal boat and allow classes to experience life in 1876 on the Miami and Erie Canals. Students will have the opportunity to visit The Issac Ludwig Mill, a working water-powered saw mill, and Lock #44, one of the last functioning 19th century limestone locks, as well as experience scenic views of the Providence Dam. Characters dressed in period attire welcome visitors to provide educational stimuli about a time gone by. Tours run from April to October with varying hours.
PUT IN BAY
979 Catawba Avenue
The natural limestone cavern that lies 52 feet below the surface is an Ohio Natural Landmark. The Cavern is located on South Bass Island, and Oliver Hazard Perry is credited with its discovery in 1813. Stalactites, stalagmites and cave pearls are visible on the cave walls, as well as the cave ceiling, which is composed of calcium carbonate deposits. Stop to see the rare underground lake. Its level rises and falls along with Lake Erie’s and is said to have helped repair the condition of many of Perry’s ill and injured men. Guided tours are available and take 20 minutes.
Anthony-Thomas Candy Company
In this world even Willy Wonka himself would be envious. The Anthony-Thomas candy company has been creating mouthwatering chocolate delicacies since 1952. The factory has a comfortable enclosed glass walkway, referred to as “The Catwalk,” where groups can view eight lines producing 25,000 pounds of chocolate per shift. Students can experience the entire candy making process from its creation all the way up until the chocolate is in its wrapper. Free group tours are available on Monday through Thursday from 9:30 to 2:30 by appointment.
The Ohio Statehouse Museum
1 Capitol Square
Welcome to Capitol Square! Students can jump into Ohio history and feel a part of it, too! The Statehouse complex includes the Senate building and Atrium! Walk across Ohio in the blink of an eye or meet your state legislator! This museum is rich in Ohio history and provides students with unique looks at our justice system. Tours are between 45-60 minutes long and bring lessons such as history, civics and other topics to life!
Coopers Cider Mill, Apple
Butter and Jelly Factory
1414 North Sandusky Avenue
This family-owned operation started back in 1969 as just a small fruit and vegetable stand. Word quickly spread about their delicious homemade apple butter and jellies, and those family recipes are still used today. Watch as apple butter is cooked in 50 copper kettles over a wood fire, and ripe fruit is being prepared for canning. Students may also observe the factory’s 1912 42-inch rack cloth cider mill, which is one of the largest in the state and produces 450 gallons of cider per hour.
Spangler Candy Company
400 North Portland Street
The Spangler Candy Company’s rich history dates back to 1906. Spangler Candy creates old fashioned favorites like Dum Dum suckers and candy canes. Ride on the Dum Dum Trolley which takes groups through the factory’s pack out and warehouse areas. A DVD presentation during the ride allows audiences to view the cooking and forming of the candy in the Spangler kitchens. The program has educational stimuli for pre-K through fifth grade and supplies work sheets that utilize basic math, history, science and writing skills. School year hours are on Wednesday through Friday from 10:00 a.m. until 3:00 p.m.
Crystal Traditions of Tiffin
145 Madison Street
Glass making is one of America’s oldest industries. Students can watch as master glass blowers, Eric Cromwell and Aidan Scully, make unique and delicate special designs. The expert glass blowers will explain and demonstrate their techniques as their creations take shape. Tiffin is known all over the world for its fine crystal, and now classes can experience the great art of glass blowing. There is no charge for the tours, and the facility is handicapped accessible. For more info call
888-298-7236 or visit www.crystaltraditions.com.
Johnston Fruit Farms
2790 Airport Highway
Nestled in Swanton is Johnston Fruit Farms. The family owned and operated fruit farm allows visitors to pick their own fruit, cuddle up at the petting zoo and even watch as homemade cider is produced at the grounds. The fruit farms began back in 1954 with the planting of the farm’s very first fruit trees. Raspberries, peaches, corn, apples and pumpkins are just a few of the fruits and vegetables available to be picked throughout the seasons. The farm is open Monday through Saturday from 9:00 a.m. until 6:30 p.m. and on Sundays from 10:00 a.m. until 6:30 p.m. Call ahead to pick your own!
Rutherford B. Hayes
1 Spiegel Grove
Walk through the original gates of the White House at the Rutherford B. Hayes Presidential Center! Spiegel Grove, the beloved home of the former president, Rutherford B. Hayes, became a museum shortly after the turn of the 20th century when the land and its buildings were deeded over to the state of Ohio. The first presidential museum in the country was opened in 1916 and has grown to include exhibit galleries, a research library and storage areas for the 13,000 artifacts which the museum displays. To begin the reservation process, the Center asks that patrons fill out their online form!
22611 State Route 2
Experience the 19th and early 20th century Great Black Swamp! View homesteads, shops and schoolhouses from the past. Students will learn about the history of the region and be able to experience day to day life from their costumed fully-staffed village. Don’t forget to stop by the newest addition – the Pioneer Settlement. Watch and learn as the history of the first immigrants to Northwest Ohio unfolds.
Maumee Valley Historical Center
1035 River Road
The Wolcott House was only a log cabin before it evolved into the grand 14-room Federal style home that graces the banks of the Maumee River. Costumed docents lead guests through not only the history of the home, but of Maumee as well. The Museum’s hands on approach and interactive activities engage students with educational fun facts. The Wolcott House is original to the site that now houses six other structures that contain art and artifacts on the history of the Maumee River Valley.
2510 Hayes Road
Tantré Farm has been a certified organic farm since 1993 and grows over 50 varieties of fruits, vegetables, herbs and flowers. Chickens, LaMancha goats and Guernsey cows also call the farm home. The family owned and operated organic farm shares a plethora of learning experiences with students from caring for barnyard animals to harvesting crops. Participating in the Edible Farm Tour is sure to keep students a buzz as they sample herbs, flowers and vegetables.