A staple within Victoria’s Beacon Hill Park has reopened for the season, prompting the perfect outing for families and animal lovers alike.
Starting today, March 16th, the public is invited to stroll through Beacon Hill Children’s Farm again—a sanctuary that goats, chickens and other critters call home.
“We are really, really excited to be back open. We and the animals are just extremely happy,” manager Claudia Laube told Victoria Buzz.
The farm, found along Circle Drive, is now open daily from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m., according to Laube. Admission is a suggested $4 donation.
“It’s a big step for us. It’s close to our hearts,” she said. “Being open this early in the spring again is a big step. I get goosebumps just thinking about it.”
For Laube, it felt like the farm had been closed forever—with the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic to blame.
“We opened for a short time last year in the summer, but we took precautions to keep the staff and animals safe and closed early,” said Laube, noting a shutdown date around Thanksgiving is eyed for 2022.
Still, she says visitors will notice a “different” experience again this year. It comes as staff take a “slow approach” given COVID-19, and because the animals need to get used to seeing humans again.
“People can come in the farmyard again and walk around and see the animals over the fence,” explained Laube. “They are able to pet the animals over and through the fence.”
“For the beginning, we’ll still keep the petting area, and animal enclosures closed,” she said.
There’s currently no public goat stampede, according to Laube. However, spectators can catch a glimpse through the outside fence twice a day—once just before the farm opens and once it closes.
And while face masks aren’t required, they are recommended. “If you are wearing a face mask, our staff members can bring a little goat to the fence for you to pet,” added Laube.
A few new furry faces have also joined the Beacon Hill Children’s Farm family, including four baby goats and five little lambs.