After learning that I didn't really know everything about the American Revolution during our two days on the Freedom Trail in Boston National Historical Park I was eager to continue my re-education at our next stop: Minute Man National Historical Park. The kids were excited to get another Junior Ranger badge. Amy was thrilled to revel more in history, which I think is her true love. (I'm ok playing second fiddle. After all, Mount Rainier is kind of important in my life.)
Minute Man is all about the British march to Concord and their retreat back to Boston. It was the first battle of the Revolutionary War and as such it's steeped in myth. Inside the visitor center there are the usual dioramas and displays, but the story of the battle is complex enough to be hard to grasp.
Enter "The Road to Revolution." It's a multimedia presentation that explains the battle. And when I say, "multimedia," I really mean it. There are physical props, uniquely shaped video screens, and a map that is lit with white and red lights showing where parts of the battle take place. All six of us got a lot out of the presentation and... wait. Six?
Oh, yeah. Even though it was freakishly hot outside we were welcoming winter early with fellow Tubbs Snowshoe Ambassador Jen. But it wasn't just Jen. She brought her Junior Ambassadors, too. Five year old, Addison, and two year old twins, Evan and Kate were visiting Minute Man for the first time just like us.
The twins weren't really into the idea of watching a 30 minute presentation so Jen walked them around outside, but Addison was glued to the stage.
My kids can be intolerant of each other, but they are always, always kind to littler kids. Lilly helped Addison with her Junior Ranger activities while Clara was happy to hold Evan and Kate, though only one at a time.
When we had finished the inside activities we headed out to the "Battle Road." This is the actual road the British marched east on and then used to flee back west to Boston. There are a few markers on the road where events took place, but mostly it was a walk through the countryside that doesn't look to have changed much.
We made it about a half mile before we turned and headed back. I got to carry Evan for a ways, which was a great reminder of adventures with the kids when they were younger. Then he decided he wanted to walk which reminded me that while I have great memories from those times, I really appreciate the fact the kids can do epic trips now.
Back at the visitor center the kids got their badges (Addison's first!) and we hung out for a little while in the sun. Addison didn't want us to leave and it was fun to snowshoe with fellow ambassadors (minus snow and snowshoes).
My big learn for this Park: Paul Revere didn't actually make it all the way to Concord! He was arrested in Lincoln and it was his friend Dr. Samuel Prescott that made it to Lexington. (The kids knew this, of course. They had watched Liberty's Kids. (Amazon.com affiliate links help support moosefish.com.))
But that's for whippersnappers. Back in my day we learned by reading off tablets made of stone. And we liked it!