Welcome to BlackacreExplore. Play. Learn...Discover The Great Outdoors!
Blackacre has several ponds on its grounds: Dragonly Pond, located down the trail behind the barn, is accesible by our new Ronald McDonald House Charities Dock. The pond hosts a plethora of dragonflies, as well as other bugs, frogs, tadpoles, fish, and birds.
Spring House Pond
Also near our historic homestead is the more shaded Spring House Pond, which can be found just below our historic Spring House. Spring House Pond is fed by the underground spring which Moses Tyler unearthed in order to create a cool storage room for perishable goods. Moses’ stream emerges in his cool, windowless Spring House before feeding the man-made pond behind it. Since Moses dug it up in the early 19th century, the Spring House Pond has been the happy home of a number of visible, active little critters, including fish, tadpoles, and frogs. Emilie Smith used to swim here!
Located just across the road from the Presley Tyler 1844 Farmhouse and the Carriage House Complex, Orchard Pond was donated by Stuart Sampson in honor of his late wife, JCPS teacher Donna Sampson. The pond’s waterfall, benches, trees and flowers were constructed in 1996 by the students of Seneca High School’s Urban Agricultural Program, and refurbished in 2012 thanks to a generous donation from Doug Tartar.
The Animals of Blackacre
The Tyler Homestead
The Stone Cottage, believed by many to be Moses Tyler’s second house, constructed in 1790. His first home, a temporary log cabin, is no longer standing. This cottage was renovated in the 1900’s and is a private residence. Please do not disturb!
The Smoke House, a replica built in the 1950’s. The original Smoke House was a frame used for smoking meat. Fires were kept going in the building and the smoke preserved the meat hanging from the rafters.
The Spring House, built in 1795. You can see where an underground spring appears before the building and flows under the Spring House into the pond. This cool water kept food preserved during hot summer days.
The Weaving Shed, now a classroom attached to the JCPS teachers’ office. It is believed this building was once a carriage house. We do not have a full history of this structure.
The Appalachian Style Barn, a rare double-crib barn used by the Tyler brothers. Built in 1790, the giant hand hewn boards and the wonderful construction of this old structure are still visible. There is an exhibit of old farm tools along the walls. See if you can guess what they were used for!
Schick Nature Center, Blackacre’s “home base” for environmental education for over 9,000 JCPS and private school students throughout the school year. It is often used for weekend programs and events as well.
We have several fun activities this summer for families to enjoy!
Saturday Morning Farm Animal Feedings Our volunteer animal feeders discuss feeding and caring for farm animals, will take place May 4th through Labor Day at 9:00 a.m.
Stories in the Barn Every Wednesday at 10:30 a.m. during the month of June we will be telling stories in the barn. Ideal ages 4-7. Feel free to bring a lunch and have a picnic afterwards.
Barn Movie Nights Every Thursday night at dusk from July 11 to August 1st, bring your family to enjoy a fun movie in the barn (movie schedule will be posted on our calendar). Event is free. Donations will be collected to benefit Blackacre.
Summer Camp July 8th-12th A week long adventure including hayrides, nature hikes, building bridges, and creating shelters, making fairy houses and more!
To learn more or to register go to: https://blackacreconservancy.org/summer-camp/
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RULES & SAFETY
Help Protect Blackacre!
As a nature preserve, historic homestead, education center, and residential community, the Blackacre Conservancy asks that you respect the following guidelines while enjoying the property:
- Pets are not permitted.
- Bicycles are limited to gravel roads and should be parked in the visitors lot.
- Picnicking is allowed only at the tables near the Nature Center.
- LNT (Leave No Trace): please pack out what you bring in.
- Do not open farm gates or enter fenced areas.
- Off-road vehicles and horseback riding are not allowed.
- Hunting, fishing, trapping, and possession of weapons are not permitted.
- Removal, defacement, or disturbance of any living thing, natural feature, or historic structure is strictly prohibited.
- Please stay on trails and respect all Residents Only and Private signs.