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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…

  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…

MuseumSee All

In honor of Black History Month, I decided to go a different way with this week’s blog. Here in Arkansas we have so much to celebrate, yet so few of us know about our rich, colorful history.  This has bothered me for years. Some time ago I asked my grandmother why I had to search so hard to find Arkansas history- why we didn’t have all the historical markers and…

NatureSee All

“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…

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…

Park InsiderSee All

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…

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…

RecreationSee All

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…

UncategorizedSee All

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…

Ah to see the world through a child’s eyes – such innocence, such joy, such wonder! Today, take advantage of National S’more Day and let your taste buds take you back in time. Head out to an Arkansas State Park to enjoy this ooey, gooey campfire treat just like you did when you were a kid. The traditional recipe is so simple you never need to write it down. Toast…

The best use of my park is as a classroom.  The thing I love to see are young people using their senses to enjoy this place that I have loved all these years.  My greatest hope is that through this contact that they will learn more about their world and come to care for the park.  What could be a more important goal of this special place? The first school…