When Kristin Fritz moved to the Okanagan from the Vancouver area, she noticed a real dearth of activities for young families.
“I was used to going to a little farm out there with my kids, but there was a real lack of those kinds of experiences here,” she said.
Instead of griping, she decided to come up with a solution.
She opened the petting zoo, Hoof Prints Barnyard in the hills behind Kelowna’s airport.
In the early days, getting a chance to interact with the creatures wandering about was possible only through private parties, but since Easter long weekend Fritz decided that she’d open the farm for what she calls, Sunday Funday.
“It was a bit of a lifestyle change,” she said with a laugh, pointing out that one of her email addresses is “city girl no more.”
But if the line-up of families filing onto the farm Sunday were any indication, it was a pretty good change.
“We have goats, lambs, pigs, a baby cow, fainting goats a donkey, horses, rabbits and guinea pigs,” she said, rattling off the animals she’s assembled for the child-oriented farm experience.
Children of all ages get to freely interact with the creatures, while a team of volunteers make sure that things run smoothly.
Now families can enjoy the petting zoo, pony rides, bonfire, concession or face-painting from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., each Sunday. Kids under three are free, and everyone else pays $5, or a family rate.
Hoof Prints isn’t the only petting zoo in town. There’s also Little Rascals pony parties and petting zoo, in Rutland, as well as the Kangaroo Farm in Lake Country.