Last Saturday, Ijams celebrated the golden beauty of autumn with a Fall Fairy House Festival. A total of 49 natural gnome and fairy abodes (plus a few hobbit holes) were built by young visitors and their families in the fading light of a warm autumnal sun.
Ijams provided all the earthy materials the youthful builders needed. They in turn brought the creativity, proving again that in natural play, all a child needs are sticks, berries, leaves and a little imagination. You really do not have to spend hundreds of dollars on toys and video games for your young ones when good old-fashioned sticks will do. Speaking of such: the humble stick—the mainstay of creative play for centuries—was inducted into the National Toy Hall of Fame in 2008. For the complete list of other (more expensive) honorees go to Toy Hall of Fame. Oh, what fun! After the builders finished their fairy houses, we are told that after dark the woodland sprites ventured forth to take up residence in their newly constructed village. - Jennifer Roder. Photos by Stephen Lyn Bales.