Visitors to Audubon Acres will get to step into Spring Frog Cabin during Pioneer Days.

More events

NOV. 14-19

* Walker Farm Pioneer Days: Audubon Acres, 900 N. Sanctuary Road, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday, $5 per person, free for Chattanooga Audubon Society members, heritage celebration with hands-on demonstrations of pioneer skills. 423-892-3690.

NOV. 18-20

* Art Studio Tour: 39 artists in 11 studio sites around Rutherford County, Tenn., 10 a.m.-5 p.m. CST Saturday-Sunday, free admission, self-guided tours. For map:

* Christmas Bazaar and Craft Show: McMinn Senior Activity Center, 205 McMinn Ave., Athens, Tenn., 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Friday, 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday, photos with Santa Claus 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Saturday. 423-745-6830.

* Holiday Marketplace: Mountain Shadows Subdivision Clubhouse, 422 Shadow Parkway, 1-6 p.m. Sunday, free, vendors, kids activities, raffle. 727-410-4793.

* Knoxville Fine Craft Fair: Chilhowee Park, 3301 E. Magnolia Ave., Knoxville, 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Friday-Saturday, 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Sunday, $8 ages 14 and older, $7 ages 65 and older; fine art show sponsored by Foothills Craft Guild.

* Made South Holiday Market: The Factory, 230 Franklin Road, Franklin, Tenn., 9 a.m.-5 p.m. CST Saturday, $13 ages 13 and older, 130 exhibitors, Southern distiller tastings.

* Mistletoe Market: North Georgia Technical College, Highway 515, Blairsville, Ga., 9 a.m.-4 pm. Saturday, 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Sunday, free; 60 artists in show sponsored by Mountain Regional Arts and Crafts Guild. 706-896-0932.

Drawing water from a well in a bucket and carting it into the house to take a bath is hard for today's kids to imagine when they can just turn on the faucet. As is dipping a wick repeatedly into wax to make candles when you're used to just flipping a switch for electricity. And spinning was a way to make cloth, not exercising on a bike.

Kids and their parents can take a step back in time to experience that "simpler life" when the Chattanooga Audubon Society hosts Walker Farm Pioneer Days at Audubon Acres in East Brainerd on Saturday, Nov. 19. It's a fun family event that multiple generations can enjoy together as they see what life was like for their ancestors as they carved out an existence in the wilderness.

"It's very different than what they are used to now," says Kyle Simpson about children's reactions when they view these pioneer skills. Simpson is the wildlife sanctuary's manager.

"Things we take for granted took work, and so much more of it took place outside than it does today. The things we always tell kids coming in Spring Frog Cabin is that you pretty much just came inside to sleep; you did chores outside, cooked outside, washed laundry outside. It's a real eye opener."

Simpson says visitors well see lots of demonstrations of skills such as Dutch oven cooking, woodcarving, rope making, carding and spinning , candle making, moccasin making and tool sharpening.

But it's not all look-but-don't-touch; children can draw water from a well and try their skill with old-fashioned toys.

"Kids get to try out Jacob's ladders, a ring-toss game and Hoop and Trundle, which uses a stick to roll (trundle) a large hoop with the objective of keeping it upright and rolling. We also have French Hoops, in which each child holds a stick about the size of a drumstick and tosses a ring back and forth, catching it on their stick."

Simpson says a new addition to Pioneer Days will be an American Indian historian who will bring some tools, tell Cherokee history and answer visitors' questions. Spring Frog Cabin will be open for viewing and a longhunter's camp will be set up.

Simpson says this living-history experience has been open for school field trips this week and more than 3,000 children will have visited Audubon Acres by the end of the week. Families have been encouraged to visit Saturday and are welcome to bring a picnic lunch to enjoy a day at the wildlife sanctuary.

Contact Susan Pierce at or 423-757-6284.


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