Feature Stories


The Wilds…Adventure Lives Here

One of Ohio’s most unique destinations is right here in Muskingum County.  A place where threatened and endangered animals from all over the world – rhinos, giraffes, antelope and now cheetahs – live in mixed-species groups, roaming expansive natural habitats.  A place where scientists and educators are working to better understand and conserve the world’s animals and natural resources.  A place where visitors can encounter and learn about nature and wildlife.  A place called the Wilds.

 

Spanning nearly 10,000 acres, the Wilds is one of the largest and most innovative conservation centers in the world, with a mission to advance conservation through science, education and personal experience.  It is a living laboratory, where every aspect of natural world presents unique venues for personal experience.

 

The signature experience is exploring the Wilds on an Open-Air Safari Tour to see and learn about rare and endangered animals from around the world living in open-range habitat.  These tours run on a shuttle system through the open pasture areas and this tour offers outstanding opportunities for wildlife viewing and photography.

 

For a more private experience, hop aboard a Wildside Tour.  Guided by animal management staff, the tour accommodates a maximum of eight guests on comfortable seats in the back of an animal management truck.  This premium two-hour tour includes plenty of up-close time with the animals in pasture, plus other behind-the-scenes stops depending on what work is taking place each day.

 

On Fridays and Saturdays from June through September the Wilds offers Sunset Safaris, a special experience that begins with a buffet dinner on the deck of the Overlook Café, followed by a twilight tour of the open-range pasture where many of the animals become more active as the sun goes down.  Pre-registration is required

 

At Nomad Ridge at the Wilds, you can enjoy an exclusive overnight stay in a well-appointed private yurt overlooking sweeping views of the Wilds’ animal pasture areas.  The package includes an Open-Air Safari tour, dinner and breakfast for each guest, and concierge service.  Each luxury yurt features an attached deck and indoor private bathroom and shower.  Nomad Ridge is open daily from May to October so book early as weekends sell out quickly.  Come spend the night for an enchanting adventure.

 

There is much more to see at the Wilds than rhinos and cheetahs through.  Just across from the Wilds entrance is the Butterfly Habitat, an important ecology project.  Over 12 acres of grassland are enriched with native flowering plants to attract and provide habitat for many species of butterfly.  A walking trail leads through the prairie, wetland, and woodland habitats.   The Birding Station at Jeffrey Point on State Route 284 offers a sweeping vista rich with grasslands that harbor an abundance of ground-nesting songbirds and raptors, as well as lakes often teeming with waterfowl.

 

Enjoy the wilds from an aerial perspective on a Zipline Safari.  Led by two professionally trained guides, this 2 1/2 hour experience consists of 10 ziplines and a rappel built on a series of observation platforms overlooking various exotic animal species.  Adventurers will zip along a network of cables, through the trees, over the animal watering holes, lakes, and pastures, finally landing among the amazing giraffes.

 

The Wilds also offers Horseback Safari tours for guests who love wildlife and are looking for a new adventure.  These tours take guests on a journey along the beautiful hillsides of the Wilds overlooking breathtaking landscapes with spectacular views of safari areas and habitats..

 

Rounding out your experience at the Wilds is the Overlook Café, offering a variety of dining options, and the Gift Market, with a wide selection of nature-themed clothing, books, toys and artwork.  Scenic picnic areas are also available.

 

Extraordinary overnight experiences for youth and families are available through the summer including WildeCamp and seasonal Family Camp programs.  Theses hands-on programs, led by the Wilds’ conservation education staff, offer a unique opportunity to explore the habitats at the Wilds in a combination of education, adventure, and fun!

 

Group tours with discounts are available for all programs.  You can add meals from boxed lunches to catered buffets to your group’s day at the Wilds.  Call ahead to arrange for your group’s customized itinerary.

 

The Wilds is open to the public select days May through October and during the winter by reservation only.  Days and hours vary throughout the season, so call ahead or check the Web site for details:

740-638-5030 or www.thewilds.org.

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Longaberger Homestead Continues to Celebrate the Art of Basket Making

Discover the charm of this family-friendly destination located in east-central Ohio, west of Dresden, Ohio, just off State Route 16 at 5563 Raiders Road in Frazeysburg. You will find yourself feeling right at home from the moment you’re greeted by the friendly folks at the Welcome Center through the end of your visit. 

 

Trademark attractions abound, making Longaberger Homestead a unique destination for all ages. The World’s Largest Apple Basket™ boasts a bumper crop of fourteen 4 foot apples creating the perfect backdrop for a group photo! The Crawford Barn™ is a beautiful hand-hewn timber frame structure representing the heritage of hard work and craftsmanship. The Dave Longaberger Memorial pays tribute to our company founder and the realization of his American dream.

 

Experience Everything Longaberger
Visit our weaving floor to see the craft first-hand and learn about our basket making heritage.  Shop a wide array of Longaberger products along with our new Markers Market, a carefully curated collection of mostly hand-touched products, made in America and selected by us especially for you.  Weave your own special creation in our Make A Basket Shop.  Stop by J.R.’s Terrace inside the At Home building for some great sandwiches and pizza. It’s all waiting for you at Longaberger Homestead.

 

The Crawford Barn Special Event Rental
A beautiful setting for weddings, reunions or special events; large or small!  Originally built in 1890, the Barn was donated to the Longaberger Company by the Crawford family and was reconstructed at Longaberger Homestead during Labor Day weekend, 1998.  You will be in awe by the architecture, size and history of The Crawford Barn as well as the beautiful surrounding, rolling hillsides of Northern Muskingum County. Visit www.longaberger.com/visit/crawfordbarnrental/ for details.

Group tours welcomed and offer a variety of activities custom-tailored with you in mind!
You’re invited to call 844.262.0407 for more information or to schedule a visit or tour.

 

Opens March 16, 2017 for the season:
Sunday-noon-5pm
Monday-Thursday 10am-5pm
Friday & Saturday 9am-6pm

 

Closed Easter Sunday & Thanksgiving Day
Closing December 24, 2017 for the season.