Life has changed since the days Daniel Boone blazed a trail in St. Charles County, but one thing hasn’t changed – our love for the outdoors. Boone Trail Days is a chance for students at Boone Trail Elementary in the Wentzville School District to learn what life was like for Americans who lived in the 1800s. The 28th annual celebration ran from October 8-12 and provided opportunities for students to take part in hands-on activities like making rope, churning butter, and spinning wool. They also enjoyed demonstrations on blacksmithing and frontier life, making classroom lessons come to life.
“Boone Trail Days is a tradition at Boone Trail Elementary that many families and community members look forward to visiting each year,” said Principal Michelle Cleve. “Students are able to learn about early pioneer life through hands-on learning activities.”
Boone Trail Days starts in the classroom, where teachers incorporate lessons about Native Americans and American pioneers into the curriculum. Thursday is highlighted by presentations from historical reenactors and other living exhibits of life in the 1800s. The week of fun learning is capped off on Friday night with games, a petting zoo, and hayrides. The event brings families together to celebrate a fall tradition that dates back to the opening of the school.
Trapper reenactor Walter Branson, who showcased period-appropriate muskets, hides, and other tools used by pioneers, said, “I taught them how to shoot a musket, throw a tomahawk, how to light a fire, and how to shoot a bow and arrow – all they need to learn in school.” That is, all kids needed to learn in school in the 1800s. Branson and his fellow presenters at Boone Trail Days gave students a better sense of what life was like for kids like them when Boone Trail Elementary was simply a trail to the frontier.