GroveFest celebrates nature with free, hands-on activities

Press Staff Writer

        Visitors can see and learn about live animals, enjoy food, games and make-it, take-it crafts at the Hayes Presidential Library & Museums’ annual GroveFest on Saturday, June 24.
        The celebration of nature and wildlife will take place on the grounds of Spiegel Grove, an arboretum and the estate of 19th U.S. President Rutherford and First Lady Lucy Hayes. Spiegel Grove is located at the corner of Hayes and Buckland avenues in Fremont.
        The event will run from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Admission is free.
        As in past year, GroveFest will once again feature a number of hands-on activities and crafts at booths with regional nature organizations. Activities are geared toward kids ages 4-10, but all ages are invited to participate. Among the organizations scheduled to participate are:
        • Nature’s Nursery and Back to the Wild, both of which will have live education animals.
        • Shooting Star Farms, which will have a petting farm.
        • Great Lakes Fishery Commission, which will have live invasive sea lampreys.
        Other participating organizations will be announced at
        Hot dogs and ice cream will be available. Donations for food are accepted but are not required.
        In addition, South Creek Clydesdales will offer horse-drawn trolley rides through Spiegel Grove during GroveFest. Rides will be available from 10:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. Tickets are $3 for ages 13 and older, $1 for ages 6-12 and free for kids 5 and younger. No reservations are being taken. The 10-minute rides take participants through the 25-acre arboretum.
        Visitor parking is off-site only with the exception of those who have handicapped tags for their car. Parking will be available on the street and in ProMedica Memorial Hospital’s parking lots at Buildings A and B, located at 605 Third Ave. Spiegel Grove is a short walk to the east of the hospital parking lots.
        In addition to nature-inspired activities, GroveFest is an opportunity to learn about Rutherford and Lucy Hayes’ love of the outdoors. The couple raised cows and chickens and planted trees on their beloved estate.
        Lucy Hayes enjoyed fishing, and she loved nature so much that her official White House china had images of the flora and fauna of the United States, from deer and raccoons to fish and lobsters.
        The title sponsor for GroveFest is the Randolph J. & Estelle M. Dorn Foundation. Partial funding is being provided by Amcor Cares Foundation, The Andersons, ProMedica Memorial Hospital, Walmart Fremont and Walmart Port Clinton.
        For information, call 419-332-2081, visit, like HPLM on Facebook at @rbhayespres and follow on Twitter and Instagram at @rbhayespres.


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