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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…

Read More Arkansas State Parks Celebrate S’mores Day

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…

Read More The Outdoor Classroom

It’s spring fever.  That is what the name of it is.  And when you’ve got it, you want – oh, you don’t quite know what it is you do want, but it just fairly makes your heart ache, you want it so! —Mark Twain In the spring, at the end of the day, you should smell like dirt. — Margaret Atwood Who’s ready for spring? Signs of this much-anticipated season…

Read More Spring Fever!

We had a school group come the park today and they raided the snack part of our gift shop during a break in the program.  So, it will be a good evening for our clean-up crew.  We have a special clean-up crew that works nights, 365 days a year, without holidays.  No, I am not talking about the two-legged kind of maintenance crew that comes in every morning early to…

Read More The Clean-up Crew

“The universe has as many different centers as there are living beings in it.”  Alexander Solzhenitsyn A tiny island of orange beckons an orange butterfly.  Down she goes as millions of her ancestors have for eons of time.  This brilliant orange flower and this beautiful insect have a relationship common in nature.  Milkweed is required for the reproduction of the Monarch butterfly.  The plant has many defenses for protection from…

Read More The Milkweed Archipelago

As an interpreter at an archeological park, I have my work cut out for me.  I do not have the geology or the beauty of Lake Ouachita, nor do I have Mt. Magazine’s View to draw visitors to my door.  What I do have, is a fabulous resource- an incomparable resource- that never ceases to amaze and astound me.  But, admittedly, it is a resource that only a fraction of…

Read More What? No Dinosaurs?

The Coca-Cola Company and its subsidiary, Odwalla have created some exciting ways to support both state and national parks. Vote for Your Favorite Park From the Live Positively Website: “For over 40 years, Coca-Cola has supported America’s national parks. Through our support of individual parks and the National Park Foundation, we’ve helped maintain and rebuild 260 miles of trails so families can be active together while enjoying the great outdoors.…

Read More Unique Ways to Support your Arkansas State Parks

As a former public school teacher, one of my favorite services we provide at your Arkansas State Parks is programs for local school groups.  I remember how hard it was trying to connect my students to the natural world in the sterile environment of a classroom.  Most of our parks have programs specifically designed for school groups that are aligned with the Arkansas K-12 frameworks, and some even have programs…

Read More It’s School Group Season!

This week as I was enjoying the sunshine on a fresh air break, I began hearing one of my favorite sounds: birds singing and chirping.  Not just any birds, but those amazing birds that are beginning to slowly make the journey northward on their spring migration.  However, that sound meant more to me than the opportunity to see some of the birds that I’ve missed over the winter months.  It…

Read More The Other “Spring Migration”

Entering Crowley’s Ridge State Park, the first things you notice are the trees.  As you wander through the park you will see a wide variety of trees, shrubs, vines, and flowering plants.  Looking at all of the greenery it might be hard to picture the land as a farm, but that is exactly what it was before a determined group of people decided that it needed to become a park.…

Read More The Park that was a Farm