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A goal all park employees share—from the most behind-the-scenes support staff to the top administrators—is to help make sure you have the best experience possible. We know your free time is valuable, and we want to help you make the most of your schedule while visiting our state parks. We’d like to tell you more about one particular team of employees whose primary job function is to help you have…

What is Music Roots? The Music Roots Program in Stone County provides traditional folk music instruction in local schools. Skilled musicians provide youth with classes in traditional folk instruments: guitar, banjo, autoharp, dulcimer, mandolin and fiddle. Classes are held during the school day to ensure participation. And instruments are provided for the students to use as long as they are in the Music Roots program. This program represents the very…

ASP Named in Top Ranks of Park Law Enforcement Units in the U.S. The law enforcement arm of the Arkansas State Parks has been singled out as one of the finest of its kind in the country. The Park Law Enforcement Association (PLEA) presented the President’s Award to the ASP Emergency Services Program at their recent annual conference. “We are extremely honored to be recognized on a national level,” said…

Way Out Yonder Diamond 2nd Largest Find in 2017 Ever since he was a child growing up in Arkansas, Wendell Fox has wanted to search for diamonds in The Natural State. Now retired and living in Joliet, Montana, the 70-year-old got his chance when he and his wife Jennifer visited Arkansas’s Crater of Diamonds State Park for the first time. On their second day at the park, the couple were…

“Kids to Parks Day” is a nation-wide call for parents and grandparents to engage their children in outdoor living. This is an opportunity to be nature mentors to children or grandchildren so they can experience first-hand how inspiring the natural world can be, as well as connecting them to the heart-healthy activities in Arkansas state parks. The natural world is a world of wonder, and the Arkansas state park system…

Gem found on surface in less than 10 minutes Victoria Brodski visited Arkansas’s Crater of Diamonds State Park for a special birthday celebration. The 25-year-old had known about the unique park for years and finally decided to visit after hearing about a 7.44-carat diamond found in March. Brodski and her family drove in from Tulsa, Oklahoma on Saturday, May 6 and bought tickets to enter the diamond field at 9:00…

Arkansas’s First Governor James Conway James Sevier Conway (1796-1855), surveyor, planter, prominent and influential citizen of pioneer Arkansas, took office as Arkansas’s first governor when Arkansas was admitted to the Union as the 25th state on June 15, 1836. Dedicated to his memory, Conway Cemetery State Park preserves Governor Conway’s final resting place, the one-half acre family plot at what was once his cotton plantation, Walnut Hill. The cemetery lies…

A National Historic Landmark, the Toltec Mounds site comprises one of the largest and most impressive archeological sites in the Lower Mississippi River Valley. Preserved here are Arkansas’s tallest American Indian mounds. Three mounds remain where 18 once stood surrounded by a 100-foot earthen embankment, a portion of which is still visible today at Toltec Mounds Archeological State Park in Scott, Arkansas. These ancient earthworks are the remains of the…

Mountain Biking at Devil’s Den State Park Devil’s Den State Park has been a haven for mountain bikers for nearly 30 years, and this April is no exception.  This weekend (April 7-9, 2017) the park will celebrate its 29th Annual Mountain Bike Festival. Cyclists are always welcome to ride on one of the first mountain bike trails built in the state. However, the festival gives participants an opportunity to go…

Now that spring is upon us, it’s a perfect time for a field trip. Unfortunately, some schools have lacked the travel funds needed to provide this special experience for their students and teachers. Now those schools can receive up to $1,000 specifically for that purpose thanks to the Arkansas State Parks Field Trip Grant Program. The grants focus on a classroom visiting the park during the school year. Money for…

While in southern Arkansas for a baseball tournament, 14-year-old Kalel Langford, of Centerton, Arkansas, fulfilled a longtime dream of visiting Arkansas’s Crater of Diamonds State Park in Murfreesboro. Kalel and his parents arrived at Arkansas’s diamond site on the afternoon of Saturday, March 11. By the end of the day, he had registered the 7th-largest diamond found at the Arkansas State Park since 1972. Kalel was walking near the East…

It’s no secret that students love spring break. How can a week away from school be anything but good? However, adults also need a break from their weekly routines and spring break is a great time to do it. Unfortunately, grownups have become too good at making excuses not to take time off. Lack of time and money are the top two reasons that are offered up as immovable blockades…

  White Oak Lake State Park in Bluff City, Ark., is hosting the Seventh Annual French Colonial Day free event Saturday, March 4, 2017. Discover our rich history by meeting reenactors representing French and other European colonials, giving insight into life in the Camden area during the 1780s. Background In 1783, a French trader named Fabre settled on a bluff above the Ouachita River and called the settlement Ecore Fabre…

Many people come to Crowley’s Ridge State Park to reminisce. Visitors frequently share stories of their delightful memories: kicking up their heels on the dance floor of the CCC Pavilion, leaping from the high dive into the cool water of Lake Ponder, or feasting on barbecue from the community grill in the picnic area. These folks tell of a time that seemed simpler, free of the technologies that seem to…

What better way to show your sweetheart how much you love them than to snuggle up in front of a fire inside a cozy cabin. Or perhaps watch a sunset from the perfect location? These are just two of the ways that Arkansas State Parks can help make this Valentine’s Day one to remember. Arkansas State Parks have planned events that will make your valentine swoon! Also, state parks provide…

What will you wear today and why?  I know for many days it’s a simple proposition for those of us in the “uniform” world of state parks. Can you say BROWN? When we move into the “personal” realm, however, there are all kinds of things that dictate the appropriate fashion statement. As we try to interpret the cultural history at Historic Washington State Park of 19th century Washington, Arkansas, we…

When people think of Lake Chicot State Park a lot of things come to mind, such as great fishing throughout the year, family reunions, campouts, campfires, relaxing in cozy cabins, that it’s an awesome place for birding, and a place to enjoy nature and wildlife.  Lake Chicot State Park is all of these things located right in the southeast corner of Arkansas.  The park sits on the shore of Lake…

Trey and Darlene Cathey of Hot Springs, Ark., stayed in one of Moro Bay State Park’s cabins this weekend and have quite the fish tale. The couple rented a boat from the park to see the scenic waterways of Moro Bay, the Ouachita River, and Raymond Lake on Sunday Morning. While boating down Raymond Lake, Trey Cathey was startled by a flash of silver and something hitting his leg.  To…

Whether you’re looking to hike a trail, journey through a moment of Arkansas’s history, muddy up the tires on your mountain bike, or just get away for the weekend, there is an Arkansas State Park waiting for you. There are 52 diverse parks scattered throughout this beautiful state so no matter where you find yourself in Arkansas, you’re sure to be near at least one Arkansas State Park. If you’re…

Ring in the New Year with a First Day Hike at an Arkansas State Park. Free, guided hikes will be offered on January 1st at 33 parks throughout the state. Arkansas State Parks are doing this in conjunction with a national First Day Hike initiative sponsored by the National Association of State Park Directors. “America’s State Parks provide havens for young and old alike to explore the beauty and serenity…

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