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“Not worth your time (if you're an adult)”
Review of Fossil Park

Fossil Park
Ranked #1 of 13 things to do in Sylvania
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Owner description: This geological park, one of only two of its kind in the world, contains thousands of fossils hidden among the rocks.
Reviewed 26 July 2014

I am a fossil enthusiast and had researched fossil areas within Ohio. There were great articles about Fossil Park and great reviews (although dated) so I decided to plan a mini vacation and drive down there. It was quite a trip and when I got there I have to say I was incredibly disappointed. It's a tiny kids park with a few piles of dirt mixed with stones. You can only break the rocks apart by hitting them against each other, but the fossils (which are just imprints) are so fragile they shatter if you try to free them from a larger piece of rock. There were very few rocks to break and trying to dig through rock filled dirt was difficult (and painful) and there were even fewer fossils. I would not recommend this park unless you live 30 minutes or less away. If you live further, it's just not worth the trip!

For the parents who want to take their children out on a fun learning experience, and don't live too far away, fossil park would be perfect for them. The kids were happy finding bits and pieces of fossils and had a lot of fun playing in the dirt and water.

9  Thank Amy B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviews (46)
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24 - 28 of 46 reviews

Reviewed 17 July 2014 via mobile

Great place for kids and adults!
It's not a fancy place... You may or may not find fossils , however it will keep kids interested while searching. They will get dirty so keep that in mind! Buckets for water are recommended. There is acses for stollers and a place to seat. We visited today for the first time and had a great time! We will be back!

3  Thank Lapit
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 May 2014

The fossils here are unique to the world! Lots of visitors. They have added restrooms. Interesting for couples, families, young and old. Allow a couple of hours tops.

2  Thank maryloujoe
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 19 May 2014

We took our 3 yo to this, not sure what to expect. It turns out that after a few days of rain, and at 9am on a Friday morning, we had the place mostly to ourselves! One older gentleman drove in from Cleveland (he was visiting a brother but originally from LA, and had been on a dino dig in MOntana) While my hubby and I were looking for actual fossils, our little guy had a blast playing in the ¨toothpaste¨ mud (they had told us to bring toothbrushes to clean off the fossils) and would look at the fossils and then go back to ¨cleaning¨ others. We were impressed with the place, although the fossils were small fragments, we did find a few complete shell looking ones (they have names listed...brachiopod maybe?) and filled our egg carton. Family at home were impressed with out findings, and our little guy asked to go back a few times. The man who was from LA was actually quite interested in what we had found and found an ancient ¨roly poly¨ specimen he showed us and told us about. He was amazed this place was free. The only advice I have is, especially if it has been raining, is to wear boots and old clothes so you can get into the mud to find them!! I highly recommend this to anyone with little boys who love dinos and digging in the mud.

1  Thank Megan B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 16 February 2014

I have been to this park twice over the last three years. I have two elementary age school children who are really into fossils. In my experience, EVERYTHING hinges on the timing of when they dump a load from the quarry. For obvious reasons, this is done unannounced and at random. If you are fortunate enough to be there shortly after a dump, it is a great experience. My son split open a rock and found a trilobite fragment with the impression on the other side. It was a hit at school when they where studying fossils

However, if you go there and there hasn't been a fresh load delivered for weeks or months, there is nothing much to find. The shale hardens after it gets wet and packed down and since you are not allowed to bring tools, it is really difficult to excavate anything with just your bare hands. All you can do is look for loose fossils that may have been overlooked and not picked over.

Regardless, if you go, bring along a bucket - the fossils show up better when wet. They have a big water tank on site but it's a pain to keep walking back and forth to rinse the rocks off. Also, an old toothbrush for cleaning, a box of tissue paper for packing (these are very fragile specimens) and a container to carry them home. Before I went, I showed my children what kind of fossils we were likely to find so they wouldn't be disappointed if we didn't find a full T-Rex skeleton.

12  Thank Dreamcruiser313
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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