HOBBS STATE PARK — CONSERVATION CENTER EVENTS
Sunset Tours on Beaver Lake
Hobbs State Park and Conservation Area has released the dates of five sunset pontoon boat cruises on Beaver Lake during the month of October. Nothing could be more enjoyable than viewing a beautiful sunset out on Beaver Lake. Many birds will be coming back to their nests this time of day. We will look for them, and listen for their calls. Don’t forget your cameras. All tour departures leave from Rocky Branch Marina promptly at stated times: Thursday, Oct. 4, 5:15 p.m.; Sunday, Oct. 14, 5 p.m.; Thursday, Oct. 18, 5 p.m.; Thursday, Oct. 25, 4:45 p.m.; and Sunday, Oct. 28, 4:45 p.m.
Tickets must be purchased in advance. Adults are $10 plus tax and children (ages 6-12) are $5 plus tax. For more information and to make reservations, call the park at 479-789-5000.
A host of free family-orientated events will take place at Hobbs State Park — Conservation Area Sunday, Oct. 7. Activities will take place at the Historical Van Winkle Hollow and the Park’s Visitor Center.
Historic Van Winkle Hollow events from 1 to 4 p.m. will include: Blacksmith demonstration, early food preservation, old-timey games, stone tool-making demonstration, Van Winkle historical presentation, apothecary shoppe, dutch oven demonstration, pearling, dowsing demonstration, mountain woman, pioneer homesteader, and tall-tale tellers.
Visitor Center demonstrations from 1 to 4 p.m. will include: Weavers, smockers, lace makers, spinners, music, “Table Top” programs, kids’ crafts and free ice cream.
A free shuttle will be available. Park at the visitor center parking lot on Ark. Highway 12 just east of the Ark. Highway 12/War Eagle Road intersection. The free shuttle will run continuously from 1 to 4 p.m., between the visitor center and Historic Van Winkle Hollow. More information is available by contacting the park office.
Three loon migration cruises
By popular demand — Hobbs State Park has teamed up with the Northwest Arkansas Audubon Society to offer three memorable loon migration cruises on Beaver Lake. Each cruise will be led by guides well experienced with waterfowl migration.
Beginning the end of October to mid-November, the waterfowl migration will be in full swing. There will be many bird species to see and identify on these cruises. Besides common loons, those participating could see red-throated loons, pied-billed and horned grebes and, possibly, western and eared grebes. These trips fall right in the middle of waterfowl migration with the possibility of seeing 10 or more species of ducks, one to three gull species, and even bald eagles. The cruises will explore a loop that starts at Rocky Branch, goes down the lake towards Twin Cove, crosses to Lost Bridge-Glade and a little further west, then returns to Rocky Branch.
The three cruises will leave Rocky Branch Marina at 10 a.m. each of the three days scheduled for Saturday, Oct. 27; Saturday, Nov. 3; and Sunday, Nov. 11. These are adult-only cruises with a cost of $10 plus tax per adult (13 years and up). Reservations are necessary. For more information and to make reservations, contact the park at 479-789-5000.
Living Forest — A nonscary, fall treat
Join Mother Nature as she introduces her many woodland friends at Hobbs State Park – Conservation Area’s “Living Forest” from 1 to 5 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 27, to begin at the Visitor Center. The cost is free and kids of all ages are invited to participate. Join in this fun, 40-minute, non-scary, fall treat for the whole family. Strollers and wagons are welcome as you meander along a wide, paved, barrier-free path. If you want to be like Mother Nature’s animal friends, come in costume. Plus, there will be crafts and free S’mores – yum.
Listen to each animal’s story, as they have a lot to tell. These educational messages will be uncomplicated and easy for young children to understand. Teenagers and adults will learn too. Living Forest is for families with members of all ages. Who are these critters who will be delivering the informative messages? They include: barred owl, deer, spider, bat, blue jays, skunk, raccoon, eagle, squirrel, and more. Costumed Northwest Arkansas Master Naturalists will be delivering the meaningful messages.
Mother Nature reading times
Mother Nature herself has become a permanent fixture at Hobbs State Park — Conservation Area lobby in the visitor center. Every second Saturday at 10:30 a.m. she visits the park to excite the imaginations of all the children around her. Upcoming Mother Nature visits and reading topics are: Oct. 13 — Spiders; Nov. 10 — Stories the Osage Nation Tells; and Dec. 8 — Squirrels: Busy All Year ‘Round. There is no cost for this activity and the length is one hour. Story time will be followed by “hands-on” nature-craft activities. Children of all ages are welcome, however, most stories will target children 3-6 years of age.
The Hobbs State Park — Conservation Area Visitor Center contact phone number is 479-789-5000.