Many Demonstrations at Prairie Days

Once again, Prairie Days will feature many historical demonstrations. Volunteers will be demonstrating how pioneers would have made homemade bread in the outdoor bake oven, also known as the cob oven. This style oven is operated by building a fire inside in order to preheat the earthen structure, afterwards the coals are removed and the baking surface prepped with cornmeal to prevent sticking.  The bread dough, cookies, or any other baked goods can then be baked before the oven cools down again. Full loaves of white bread, wheat bread, rye bread, white herb bread or ginger sorghum molasses cookies will be available for a donation during Prairie Days in the General Store.

Also back this year are the sorghum pressing and boiling demonstrations. Journey to the top of the hill to witness stalks of sorghum, grown in Darke County, pressed to release their sweet juice.  After capturing the sweet liquid from pressing the stalks, volunteers will boil it down similar to making maple syrup. The processed sorghum, also known as sorghum molasses, will be available for a donation while supplies last.

In addition to these demonstrations, visitors will also see blacksmiths working in the shop, a broom maker making corn brooms, soap making, apple butter boiling over an open fire, and many more historical demonstrations.

Come check out all of these trades and all the other fun, educational, and family friendly activities at the 2018 Prairie Days festival, September 29th from 10am to 5pm and September 30th from 12pm to 5pm. The event will be held at the Shawnee Prairie Preserve and has plenty of free parking and free admission. For questions or more information, call the Nature Center at (937) 548-0165 or email info@darkecountyparks.org.