By Joan Frances
Spring is just around the corner. Outdoor activities and events are planned and anticipated. The residents of Fort Bend are very lucky to have so much to do without a long drive. So where do you start? What is fascinating, educational, and enjoyable for the whole family? The answer is simple, take the family to a museum. Depending on how far you want to go, the possibilities are endless.
George Ranch Historical Park showcases 100 years of Texas history
The park is developed around a nearly mile long loop and to cover it will take about three hours. A tractor drawn wagon circles every 20 to 30 minutes. Tours view the Davis Victorian Mansion and George Ranch house with quality artifacts from the area. The rest of the tour is mainly outside, Jones Stock Farm, Sharecropper’s Cabin, working pens and tree house all authentic examples of what life was like many years ago.
The park has scenic settings that make for a wonderful trip to the past. There is also a café on site, the Dinner Belle Cafe, which serves beverages, light lunches and snacks. Reservations are not necessary. Opened from Tuesday through Saturday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. They are closed Sunday and Monday. Located at 10215 FM 762 in Richmond. Admission $10 Adults $9 Seniors (62+) $5 Children ages 5-15 under age 4 free.
Do you hear train sirens howling in the distance late at night
Come to the Rosenberg Railroad Museum for a historical tour. Stroll through the museum building filled with artifacts and memorabilia that chronicles the growth and importance of railways in Fort Bend County. View a “tea pot” water tower and walk through a Caboose. The 1879 private business car is a must see.
Also on the property, a 1944 fire truck, and a turn of the century jail and bath house. They even have a model train exhibit. The education station house is built just for children to five years old and is set up to host Birthday Parties for ages two through eight. Hours of operation are Tuesday -Saturday 10:00 A.M. to 5:00 P.M. and Sunday 1:00 P.M. to 5:00 P.M. Located at 1921 Avenue F, Rosenberg. Admission $5 Adults, $4 Seniors (55+), $3 Children ages 1-14.
Fort Bend Museum
The Fort Bend Museum complex is located in historic Richmond and reviews the history of Austin’s Colony from 1822 to 1945. These extensive galleries represent the 1821 settlement of American colonists and the plantation period of the 1850’s and 1860’s and the importance of the sugar and cotton industry.
The tour includes the Long Smith Cottage that was built between 1838 and 1840 and is one of the oldest buildings in Richmond. Furnishings are all hand made in Texas to marvel over. The John Moore Home was built in 1883 and is redesigned in a neo- classical style popular in the early 1920’s. Hours of operation are Tuesday – Friday 9:00 A.M. to 5:00 P.M. and Saturday 10:00 A.M. to 5:00 P.M. Located at 500 Houston Street in downtown Richmond. Admission $5 Adults, $4 Seniors (62+), $3 Children 5-15. 4 and younger are free.
Did you know there is a Tyrannosaurus Rex living in the neighborhood
The Houston Museum of Natural Science at Sugar Land has one on display and so much more. These 5.5 acres of land has state of the art, on site permanent exhibits. Walk through the Hall of Minerals or Earth Science and view displays of shiny purple and golden crystals, as well as amethyst and citrine geodes taller than people with a cave of florescent minerals in every size and color.
In the Hall of Life Sciences, observe a collection of living frogs and skulls of different animal species. Visitors can compare a variety of skulls of different animals from around the globe. There is also a planetarium and a 10,000-square-foot traveling exhibit that occupies the second floor.
This place is a must see for the entire family. Hours of operation are Thursday and Friday 9:00 A.M. to 3:00 P.M. Saturday 9:00 A.M. to 5:00 P.M. Sunday 12:00 A.M. to 5:00 P.M. Closed Monday through Wednesday. Located at 13016 University Blvd, Sugar Land. Admission $12 Adults, $9 Seniors (62+), $9 Children 3-11.
Fort Bend County residents can be proud of many things. With so much to do and see the community continues to keep the promise of being the “Best Place to Live and Work.”