Enchanting faerie communities are hidden within woods of Aullwood

Credit: DaytonDailyNews

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Tucked within the woods at Aullwood Nature Center are a half dozen tiny communities. The Faerie Communities of Aullwood are hand-crafted petite structures.

Credit: DaytonDailyNews

Tucked within the woods at Aullwood Nature Center are a half dozen tiny communities.

The Faerie Communities of Aullwood — the Old English spelling is used because it sounds magical — are a series of petite structures tucked along the Birds, Flight and Wrights Trail that take visitors on a whimsical path.

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The Faerie Communities of Aullwood are a series of petite structures made from gourds tucked along the Birds, Flight and Wrights Trail. LISA POWELL / STAFF

The Faerie Communities of Aullwood are a series of petite structures made from gourds tucked along the Birds, Flight and Wrights Trail.  LISA POWELL / STAFF

Combined ShapeCaption
The Faerie Communities of Aullwood are a series of petite structures made from gourds tucked along the Birds, Flight and Wrights Trail. LISA POWELL / STAFF

Gourds have been creatively used to build the miniature neighborhoods that include an artist colony, a brownstone, a luxury gated community and a 5-star motel.

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“It’s a fun thing kids can do. They love looking at them,” said Judi Hill of Beavercreek, who helped create the faerie communities with Aullwood volunteers Janie Gehman, Kathy and Dave Anderson and Jen Basinger. “They just evolve. It’s amazing to see what comes out.”

 

The brownstones, reminiscent of those found in New York City, are made from four long and twisted gourds. A series of steps lead to the front door and windows overlook the trail.

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Tiny clothes pins hold laundry on a line spanning two country homes in the rural faerie community. Out front chairs made from bottle caps are ready for any pixies needing a rest.

At the Gourd-Nite Motel, placemats are folded to form the roof lines of individual rooms. A pool with a diving board is built out front for traveling business faeries.

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The Faerie Communities of Aullwood are a series of petite structures made from gourds tucked along the Birds, Flight and Wrights Trail. A special gourd, The Library, is located in the gift shop. LISA POWELL / STAFF

The Faerie Communities of Aullwood are a series of petite structures made from gourds tucked along the Birds, Flight and Wrights Trail.  A special gourd, The Library, is located in the gift shop. LISA POWELL / STAFF

Combined ShapeCaption
The Faerie Communities of Aullwood are a series of petite structures made from gourds tucked along the Birds, Flight and Wrights Trail. A special gourd, The Library, is located in the gift shop. LISA POWELL / STAFF

Don’t miss a special gourd inside Aullwood’s Marie S. Aull Education Center. A library, complete with hand-made books, wine cork lamps and popsicle-stick hardwood floors, is on display.

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Stop at the center desk and pick up a form for a special children’s game. Hidden inside each of the faerie communities is a small animal. As children find the animals within the gourd communities, they can fill in the form and bring it back to the Aullwood Gift Shop for a prize.

Want to go? 

What: The Faerie Communities of Aullwood

Where: Aullwood Nature Center, 1000 Aullwood Rd.

Hours: The installment will be on view until Labor Day.  Aullwood is open Monday – Saturday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday, 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.

Admission: Free for children 2 and under, $5 for children 3 to 11 and $7 for adults 12 and over. Members of Friends of Aullwood and the National Audubon Society receive free admission with membership card.

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