A new addition at Dallas Arboretum is the Meyers Children's Adventure Garden.
I thought that Children's adventure garden would be a miniaturized Arboretum plus some hands on activities, of course with more signs and labels. It indeed has this plus more.
We walked to the left after entering the garden and eventually walked onto the sky walk. At the end of the sky walk, there is a "water park". It turned out to be T Boone Pickens Energy park.
I looked around a bit and was not really excited about it until I started to play with the toys!
This first thing I did was to shoot water gun at a turbine. As the turbine turned faster and faster, it started to produce water sprout. There is a big turbine (the front one in the first photo), that shooting from one water gun will not be able to start it. I asked Lily to play with me and together with shootings from two water guns we made the biggest turbine turn and produced water sprout.
|shooting at turbine to rotate it, fast rotating turbine generated water sprout|
|playing together was fun even for adults|
I had so much fun, so I went to look for the kids in the group, who turned right after the entering the garden, to have them go to the energy park to have some fun. Initially they were not impressed either until they started playing.
Another "shooting" game was to shoot lights into the center of this yin-yang wheel to make it turn. Unfortunately it was cloudy, no sunshine during the time we were there.
A game to educate about hydro power was to transport water through a helical seal to high place and then to turn over a large water bucket. Initially I helped a unknown boy to rotate the shaft to transfer water to top of the tube and turn over the bucket, and then I played this by myself. The excitement I had infected the boys in our group and they had plenty of fun to play the game a few times.
|port water "uphill"|
There is a solar tree to collect solar power. A chest of solar toys gave me ideas about future prizes for STEM related events. A very interesting device is to use solar power to heat air in a vertical tube to float a very light ball to the top of the tube; when solar power is blocked the ball falls to the bottom. The solar energy emitted through the thick clouds was sufficient to make the demo work.
|The commercial wind turbine turned slowly under very light breeze|