Johnston Farm set to reopen

PIQUA — The Johnston Farm & Indian Agency will open for the 2020 summer season on Thursday, June 18. The hours of operation will be 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Thursdays and Fridays, and noon to 5 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays.

Admission is $9 for adults, $8 for seniors and AAA members, and $4 for students ages 6 to 12. Free admission is offered for Johnston Farm Friends, Ohio History Connection members, and children 5 and under.

According to site manager Andy Hite, on Thursdays and Fridays, from 10:30-11:30 a.m., those who are considered most “at risk” with regard to the coronavirus pandemic are encouraged to visit. During this time, face coverings will be required of all visitors. At all other times, masks are recommended but not required.

Hite said the Johnston Home and museum will be open to visitors, however, some areas of the home will be off limits due to renovations, which are set to continue until mid-summer.

“Contractors are working on the upper two floors, so those will not be available to people, but we’ve got activities set up in the winter kitchen area on the lower level of the home,” he said.

The patio and summer kitchen area will be active with fiber preparation demonstrations, other aspects of life on the frontier, and the role John Johnston played in our history, Hite said.

“The research is telling us that people are going to prefer outdoor activities at this time, so the spring house will be open and self-guided, the cider house and barn will be open, and we also have an Adena mound and earthwork, going back to the prehistoric era, that’s on site, so there will be a lot of things for people to do outside,” he said.

The General Harrison of Piqua canal boat will also be up and running, Hite said, and will leave the dock each day at 12:30, 2:30, and 4 p.m. To help maintain social distancing, tickets will be required and available in the museum.

“When visitors come in, they’ll need to get a ticket at the sales counter when they pay admission, and a fewer number of people will be allowed on the boat at a time during this period, but we’ll do our best to accommodate everyone that’s here,” he said.

In order to help maintain the safety of visitors, staff, and volunteers, visitors are asked to consider the following best practices when visiting:

• Practice social distancing to limit exposure to other visitors, staff, and our volunteers.

• Use everyday preventative measures (wash hands, don’t touch eyes/nose, etc.).

• Credit/debit or checks are preferred.

• Hand sanitizer will be located around the site.

• Consider wearing face coverings (masks), especially in areas of closer personal contact with others.

• Bring your own water or soda (water fountain temporarily unavailable).

The Johnston Home will open 30 minutes after the gate, to allow staff to clean and prepare for visitors. The museum will open 30 minutes late on Thursdays and Fridays only. Both areas will close at 4:30 p.m. to allow time to thoroughly clean.

“Our staff is ready and we’re looking forward to seeing people,” Hite said.

The site will be closed on July 4.