Open house set at Willowbrook

PIQUA — The Upper Valley Career Center Environmental Occupations students will host the annual Willowbrook Environmental Education Center and Garbry Museum open house from 1-4 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 18.

Michelle Brunson, program supervisor said, “This incredible, natural-education resource is available to the public on a very limited basis each year. The fall open house is a great opportunity for families to hike the preserve, tour the museum, and enjoy the displays.”

Students will be demonstrating Early American methods of cooking in a Dutch oven over an open fire. Visitors may also enjoy strolling through a historic town square which includes a barbershop; general store; bank; post office; offices for a doctor, dentist, and lawyer; and much more. Restored antique farm equipment, a canal boat — the Troy Belle (circa 1900), the U.S. Mail Rural Route 7 horse-drawn buggy used near Troy, and fire engines from the village of Fletcher and city of Piqua will also be on display. This unique collection has been assembled over several decades by the John Scott Garbry Family and the Upper Valley Career Center with the shared goal of preserving the heritage of Shelby and Miami counties while providing authentic artifacts to be used for education.

EOP students also demonstrate chain saw carving and will provide guided nature hikes through the trails of the 180-acre preserve and wetlands. Hikers of all ages may anticipate viewing fall foliage and many unique nature habitats within the area.