I am a big fan of the ocean and will happily accept any opportunity to take a field trip to the beach. Something about that salt air seems to take the stress away. A few weeks ago we had the benefit of studying about Orville Wright as my son read Orville Wright: The Flyer by YWAM publishing. We decided to finish that study with a quick trip to the Wright Brothers Memorial and Jockey’s Ridge State Park.
*Some of the links in my posts may be affiliate links see below for more information. *
We had been to the Wright Brothers Memorial several years ago but were excited to go back because they recently finished renovating their visitors center. The visitors center is not large but has some really neat information in it along with a replica of the Wright Flyer. The original flyer is actually located in Washington D.C. at the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum. There is also a small gift store and rest rooms located at the visitors center.
When we first arrived, we talked to the ranger and two of my children picked up a junior ranger packet. Most of the national and state parks have these programs and we love to utilize them. They are almost always free (one park we went to charged $1.25) and they really help us get the most out of the park. They have various activities that the children have to complete prior to finishing our visit and it helps them to learn more about the nature or history of the park.
I think that one of the coolest parts of this park is that they have marked off the place where the first flights took off and then they have markers showing how far out the flights went. You can run the length of the flights. This is such a great visual and really helps them to better understand the distance and connects you with the history.
Next, we climbed up to the top of the sand dune where the gliders were first flown. There is now a monument to the Wright Brothers that sits atop the hill. It is a steep climb but offers a beautiful view.
Once we had climbed to the monument, it was time for lunch. In keeping with the Wright Brothers theme of our trip, we went over to the Black Pelican for lunch. This modern seafood restaurant is located in what was once the life saving station. The very life saving station where the Wright Brothers sent the famous telegram to their father, telling him of their first successful flights.
While we were in town we decided to take an hour or so and visit Jockey’s Ridge State Park. This park is free to enter and is home to the tallest living sand dune on the Atlantic coast. There is a nice little visitors center that has information about the plants and animals that are native to the dunes and the area around the dunes. My daughter chose to work on another junior ranger badge at this park.
Once we looked around the visitor’s center it was time to take a walk in the sand. While the baby and I did not go all the way to the top of the dune, the older children and my husband climbed to the top. The views are beautiful and the children enjoyed rolling back down the dune!
This was a wonderful day of family fun! We were able to visit a site where history was made, learn more about nature, and overall just really enjoy spending time together as a family. On our way home, I found out that Nana over at You Are An Artist had a cute art lesson that we could use to go along with our trip and studies. This chalk pastel lesson of the Wright Brothers airplane is included with our Clubhouse subscription or in the Inventors History Course. This was a great way to extend what we had already done.
If you get a chance to visit, let me know how you like it and don’t forget to take your parks passport and get it stamped! We have found that the passport is a great way for the children to get a souvenir at each park with no additional expense after the initial purchase of the passport. North Carolina State Parks also offer a passport program. You can get those passports for free at any state park.
Wright Brothers National Memorial
1401 National Park Drive
Manteo, NC 27954
Hours of Operation:
seven days a week, year-round, 9:00 am–5:00 pm (Closed Christmas Day)
Costs: $10 adults (16+) Children Free (If you have a 4th grader you can use the Every Kid in a Park Pass for free admission)
Homeschool Discount: You can apply 4 weeks ahead of time for an educational fee waiver.
Food: There are drinks available for purchase and space for picnics outside.
Resource Library and Affiliate Disclosure
When you sign up for the Schoolin’ Swag free resource library you will get a link and password to the library, we are adding to the library each month with new items. You will also get a bi-weekly newsletter email to keep you up to date on what we have going on.
This post may contain affiliate or referral links, including Amazon affiliate links. As always I will never recommend a product that I don’t believe in and you will never be charged more for purchasing through our links. It does help pay for the costs associated with the blog.
Deals and Freebies
Schoolhouse Teachers is also offering a great sale! If you want to give it a try, your first month is only $1 or you can get an entire year for $111. My daughter is getting ready to use a photography class from our subscription to help her learn more about her new (to her) camera.
Free Makeover Your Morning 5 Day Challenge! This is a great way to help re-focus and get your day off on the right foot.
Harry The Happy Mouse (Free on Kindle)
Illustrated Would You Rather Book (Free on Kindle)
FREE Writing About Books: Book Reports and Beyond from Write Shop!
FREE: Check out this great new FREE resource for classical and Charlotte Mason education! Classical Christian Education & Charlotte Mason. Great for folks already homeschooling or if you have friends that are looking into it!
Are you ready for some spring cleaning? Need to do a little decluttering?
What is your scariest place to declutter?
There is a great FREE Decluttering Challenge going on right now. If you are looking for some help or encouragement join this FREE declutter challenge. Saturday is the last day to sign up so hurry!