Laid back places and spaces for you to enjoy in your Metro Parks

Serenity in the Secret Garden

Grace and Mary Innis statues at Inniswood Metro Gardens
Inniswood Sisters’ Garden is an interactive story garden for children and adults honoring the memory of Grace and Mary Innis who donated their homestead to Metro Parks. (Brenda Layman)

Inniswood Metro Gardens has so much to offer to spark the imaginations of children and adults. As you walk its pathways you’ll enjoy the inner peace and tranquility that the gardens inspire. A favorite restful retreat at Inniswood is the Secret Garden. Located within the Sisters’ Garden this is the ideal place to read, relax or just rejuvenate.

Once in the Sisters’ Garden take the path downhill from the Sky Woman statue through a child-sized trellis covered with branches. And because it is a secret garden, there are some other hidden ways you can find to enter.


Secret Garden at Inniswood designed to look like an abandoned homestead
The walled Secret Garden was designed to resemble an abandoned homestead that nature has reclaimed. (Inniswood Garden Society)

The Secret Garden was designed to resemble the remains of an old abandoned brick building wherein a garden has sprung up. Still statues, surrounded by bubbling water and a variety of plants and vines, create a picturesque setting.


Guardian owl at Inniswood's Secret Garden
Sitting atop the corner wall is the guardian owl greeting and watching over all who enter. (Anne Marie Lutz)

Most of the walls are embedded with marbles and quotes about nature and gardening. Go behind the heron fountain and you’ll find a place to sit in solitude where you can hear water flowing into a small pond.


An inspirational quote on the wall of the Secret Garden at Inniswood
Inspirational nature and gardening quotes are inscribed on the walls of brick. (Inniswood Garden Society)

Unwind down on the farm

Path to barn at Slate Run Farm
The multi-bay barn was built in 1881 and houses the farm’s livestock. (Edith Wood)

Spend an enjoyable morning or even a day with your family at Slate Run Living Historical Farm, a working farm from the 1880s. Take a leisurely quarter-mile amble down a dirt path from the parking lot to the farmhouse.


Father and daughter on the maple tree swing at Slate Run Farm
Visitors have some good, old-fashioned fun under the old maple tree. (Kirt Beiling)

Outside the house, swing back in time on the rope tree swing or try some old-fashioned toys like the ring toss, hoops or bowling pins on the lawn or just lay back under the grape arbor and watch the clouds go by.

As you stroll around the grounds, let your senses open up and guide you as you take in the soothing sights, sounds and smells of the farm.

The aroma of stew cooking over the wood stove or the woodsy smell when you step into the smokehouse where bacon and ham are curing will tickle your taste buds. As you head back toward the barns, you’ll be greeted by “oinks, moos and quacks” as you see pigs, cows, ducks and other animals.


Blacksmith fires the forge at Slate Run Farm
Slate Run’s farmer fires up the forge, a type of hearth used for heating metals. (Frank Kozarich)

Listen to the ringing of the blacksmith’s hammer or the dinner bell calling the farmers for the mid-day meal.


Percheron horses pull a mechanical wheat cutter through the field. (Julie Heetland)

Take some time to watch the farmer maneuver the 1,500-pound Percheron horses through the crops or watch the farm ladies in the summer kitchen canning and preserving crops from the heirloom garden.


Farm lady prepares carrots for lunch at Slate Run Farm
Farm ladies work hard to grow food, harvest it and then preserve it to be eaten throughout the year. (Frank Kozarich)

Take a moment when you’re at Slate Run Living Historical Farm or Inniswood Metro Gardens to snap a photo or shoot a video and tag us at #cbusmetroparks and enjoy your visit.