Monday, March 09, 2009

Hungry for Nature

Wow, that's so cool! How do you cook it?
-Merriwether the Adventurer

Rhinoceros beetle grub, nature's original Snickers Bar.

If you crave nature Houston is the place for you, believe it or not. There's always something going on at one of the many park, nature preserves, or greenways that dot this fine city. This last Saturday me and the Wethergirls spent the day playing with all sorts of wild things at Jesse H. Jones' NatureFest. It was a day filled with bugs, snakes, lizards, plants, and many other yummy parts of nature.

Mmmm, catfish!

NatureFest takes place the first Saturday in March every year and each year it seems to get bigger and bigger. The main section of the park is filled with an assortment of booths and tents set up by Houston area nature groups ranging from the Houston Museum of Natural History to the "Keep (Insert town name here) Green!" as well as a number of hiking, paddling, and birdwatching groups. If you want to know where to go wildernessing around Houston this is a great place to find your options.

Heading the the N'Fest!

The main parking lot is taken over by tents so everyone has to park in the axillary lot and then take a hay ride to the fest. They zip you along quite quickly, the girls loved this.

One of several lanes. I'd say there were about five rows like this of stuff, plus live entertainment.

Crab tank!

This is always Miniwether's favorite booth. The girl loves crabs. This year they added something else, too. Sea anemones!

At first the girls were afraid to touch the anemones. Miniwether was convinced it would suck her in and eat her, so I had to touch it first. They feel like marshmallows if marshmallows sucked on your finger. Sidenote: they don't taste ANYTHING like marshmallows. Once I touched it and didn't get eaten the girls were all over them.


One of the ladies at this booth had a very nice ball python people could touch. For some reason she wasn't very interested in the Amazonian python cooking techniques. Oh well.

Mambowether prefers meat with legs...and lollipops.

Mmmm! Texas is home to forty different crayfish, all of which are edible!

Caterpillars, butterflies, and moths! While many African caterpillars are considered delicacies, none of the one's on display at the NatureFest were edible. At least while the boothlady was watching, anyway...

Big tortoise. Miniwether was really excited when she got to see it poop.

Another snake. Lots of meat on this one!

Boothman: This is a female Blue Skank from Austraila
Lady in jeans/white shirt: Hmmm, not exactly a good name if you're looking for a date.
Me: Oh, I don't know (wink)...
Lady: Laughs and pushes a strand of hair behind her ear.
Miniwether: Daddy, have we eaten one of these yet?
Lady in jeans/white shirt: Wha...?!

Mosquitoes...more trouble than they are worth as far as eating goes.

Done, heading home.

It really was a great time and they have all sorts of neat give-aways like coloring books, maps of local parks, stickers, and tons of useful literature. Bummer it's only once a year...then again, that does give them time to forget me. ;-)

Adventure! Excitement! Next time I'm bringing snacks!

1 comment:

Kelly said...

You guys do the coolest things! Where do you find out about all of these great events?