Friends of Hobbs
State Park-Conservation Area

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Events & Programs 

If you can't find something fun to do every week at Hobbs you are not trying very hard! There are weekly programs put on by park interpreters, guest speakers, special events, programs put on by outside groups -- something for everyone to enjoy!   

Weekly Program Schedule

Every week, park interpreters at Hobbs put on informative programs on a wide range of topics. Learn how to pitch a tent, take a guided hike, be a nature detective, listen to a story told by Mother Nature, learn the principles of Leave No Trace -- there is no end to the topics!  Some are directed toward children and others toward adults. Some activities last 20 minutes, some last an hour. Most are free! Take a look at the calendar and see what might interest you!

Guest Speaker Series

In Northwest Arkansas we are blessed with many gifted speakers ready to pass along fascinating information about our natural world. Guest speakers present programs at 2PM on Sunday afternoons at the Visitor Center, unless otherwise stated.  Learn about the Beaver Lake Bald Eagle population, local bug life, duck hunting, dowsing rods, float fishing, or meet Igor the Turkey Vulture up close -- to name just a few topics. Check the calendar to see what is coming up. These presentations are free.

Astronomy Nights

The Sugar Creek Astronomy Association is pleased to offer several opportunities to study the stars. They offer a brief lecture on an informative topic, like how to purchase a telescope, or viewing the planets, then they move outside for some celestial viewing. No registeration is required. You may use their telescope, "Big Boy," or bring your own. Binoculars work too. Bring a flashlight with a red lens cover, such as a cloth or balloon, and a star chart if you have one. You may also bring chairs and drinks for outdoor comfort.  

Nature Exploration Day Camp Program

Looking for a way to get your kids outdoors during spring break or during the summer? Hobbs offers 3-day camps for 6-8 year-olds (June 6- 8, 2018) and 9-12 year-olds (June 13-15, 2018)!   From 9AM-3PM, children will bring a sack lunch and spend the day observing nature while hiking, playing nature games and crafting.  Just $50 for all three days!  Reservations are required and space is limited.  Call 479-789-5000 to register.

This year a camp has been added for 13 - 15 year olds to get out and explore. It will be July 11-13, 2018. Call the park at 479-789-5000 for more information.

Workshops & Special Events

Step back in time at the Hobbs Fall Festival, celebrate conservation at Aldo Leopold Day, take some lessons on mobile phone photography, take a stroll through the "Living Forrest" with Mother Nature -- these are just a few of the great events and workshops that take place throughout the year at Hobbs. Check the calendar and see what is coming up!

Photographic Society of NWA

The Photographic Society of NWA (PSNWA) will be at Hobbs State Park for a series of free instructional photography programs to the public. Anyone of any photography skill level is encouraged to attend the classes, however, please note the skill level for the Photo Walks are designed for experienced amateurs, hobbyists, and accomplished photographers.  PSNWA professionals will explain the different photography-learning opportunities through classes, lectures, and photo walks within the park on the first meeting, which is October 17th.. Check out http://www.psnwa.org to learn more about PSNWA.  No reservations are required, just show up at Hobbs State Park Visitor Center.


Upcoming events

    • 09 Jun 2018
    • 08 Dec 2018
    • 7 sessions
    • Visitor Center

    Mother Nature herself has become a permanent fixture at Hobbs State Park –Conservation Area.  Every 2nd Saturday at 10:30 a.m. she visits the park to excite the imaginations of all the children around her. 

    Upcoming Mother Nature visit dates and reading topics:

    June 9 – Animals in the Night

    July 14 – Water Dance – Water Cycle & Storm Drain Pollution

    August 11 – Caterpillar to Butterfly

    September 8 – Trees

    October 13 – Spiders

    November 10 – Stories the Osage Nation Tells

    December 8 – Squirrels – Busy All Year ‘Round

    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.

    Meet Mother Nature in the lobby of the Hobbs State Park – Conservation Area visitor center located on Hwy 12 just east of the Hwy 12/War Eagle Road intersection.

    Put this notice on your refrigerator to remind you of all of the upcoming Mother Nature Reads dates.

    Cost:  FREE     Length – one hour.  

    For more information, call:  479-789-5000


    • 04 Oct 2018
    • 28 Oct 2018
    • 5 sessions
    • Rocky Branch Marina

    Hobbs State Park – Conservation Area has released the dates of five sunset pontoon boat cruises on Beaver Lake.

    October          Departure Times from Rocky Branch Marina      

    Thursday 4th                                            5:15 p.m.

    Sunday 14th                                              5:00 p.m.

    Thursday 18th                                          5:00 p.m.

    Thursday 25th                                           4:45 p.m.

    Sunday 28th                                               4:45 p.m.

    Nothing could be more enjoyable than 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.

    Tickets must be purchased in advance.  Adults $10.00 + tax.   Children 6-12   $5.00 + tax.    Tours depart Rocky Branch Marina promptly at stated times. For more information and to make reservations, call: 479-789-5000


    • 13 Oct 2018
    • 28 Oct 2018
    • 5 sessions
    • Ozark Plateau Trail at the Visitor Center

    Do you know the destination of a trail? And just what is “Hidden Diversity”? Join Park Interpreter Steve to learn more about your Arkansas State Park.  
    Meeting place: Ozark Plateau Trail at the Visitor Center
    Admission: Free

    • 13 Oct 2018
    • 28 Oct 2018
    • 2 sessions
    • Visitor Center

    The choices you make when you are outside make a big difference. This is a great program for all ages, but especially for young girls and boys who are just beginning to experience camping, hiking, and the outdoors in general. 
    Meeting place: Visitor Center
    Admission: Free

    • 21 Oct 2018
    • 1:00 PM - 1:30 PM
    • Visitor Center

    Join Park Interpreter Steve while you learn some interesting facts about our reptile friends. Why are there 5 toes on a 3-toed box turtle? There is an easy way to tell the difference between a boy and a girl turtle. Do you know the secret? Have you ever seen a racing turtle? We’re betting on ours.   
    Meeting place: Visitor Center 
    Admission: Free

    • 21 Oct 2018
    • 3:00 PM - 3:30 PM
    • Visitor Center

    Do you know the symbols of Arkansas? Some are easy, and others you probably have never heard of. Did you know we have a state soil and a state beverage? Join Park Interpreter Steve to learn some of the symbols of the great state of Arkansas.  
    Meeting place: Visitor Center
    Admission: Free

    • 27 Oct 2018
    • 1:00 PM - 1:30 PM
    • Visitor Center

    Is it a gall or isn’t it?  What is a gall?   How are they formed?  Join interpreter Steve to learn the basics of what galls are all about. 
    Meeting place: Visitor Center
    Admission: Free

    • 27 Oct 2018
    • 1:00 PM - 5:00 PM
    • Van Win

    Join Mother Nature as she introduces her many woodland friends at Hobbs State Park – Conservation Area’s “Living Forest” on Saturday October 27th.

    Listen to each animal’s story.  They have a lot to tell us.  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. 

    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.   Also experience:  crafts and free S’mores – yum.

    Where:  Hobbs State Park visitor center on Highway 12 just east of the Hwy 12/War Eagle Road intersection

    When:  Saturday October 27, 2018  -   Come any time from 1 pm – 5 pm

     Cost:  Free

    Kids of all ages are invited to participate.  For more information, call: 479-789-5000


    • 27 Oct 2018
    • 3:00 PM - 4:00 PM
    • Visitor Center

    Join Park Interpreter Steve on an easy stroll through the Historic Van Winkle Hollow and learn about the Van Winkle mill, the largest in the state of Arkansas all through the 1870s. The area is on the National Register of Historic Places. 
    Meeting place: Visitor Center
    Admission: Free

    • 05 Nov 2018
    • 31 Dec 2018
    • 22 sessions
    • Rocky Branch Marina

    Hobbs State Park has offered eagle watch tours on Beaver Lake for nine years.  Every cruise is different.  You never know what wildlife you will see.

    According to Chelsea Porter, park interpreter, “We have always been lucky seeing eagles on our tours; some mature, some immature, and we always see other beautiful wildlife as well.  It could be migrating osprey, great blue herons, king fishers, deer, or red-tailed hawks.  No one will ever be disappointed on our eagle tours.”  Porter added, “We only take 18 guests at a time, so it’s important that folks call the park in a timely manner to ensure that their names get on the boarding lists.”

    Eagle Cruise Dates
    November:  5, 6, 12, 13, 19, 20, 23, 25, 26, 27
    December:  3, 4, 10, 11, 17, 18, 23, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31

    Tickets must be purchased in advance.  Adults $10.00 + tax. Children 6-12 $5.00 + tax.  Tours depart Rocky Branch Marina promptly at 3:00 p.m.  For more information and to make reservations, call: 479-789-5000

    For additional information on Hobbs programs, trails, picnicking, or meeting room rental:   Call:  479-789-5000 


    • 24 Nov 2018
    • 8:00 AM
    • 25 Nov 2018
    • 5:00 PM
    • Visitor Center

    This two-day course immerses participants in basic wilderness medicine procedures, preparing individuals to take immediate action when an outdoor activity doesn't go as planned, and 911  responders are hours away.  Time is split between interactive classroom sessions and hands-on field scenarios to prepare participants and help them quickly develop basic backcountry medical care skills.

    The course focus is on patient assessment, stabilization and emergency treatment of issues such as hypothermia and snakebites, as well as understanding of when and how to attempt evacuation.  Participants will emerge capable of calmly responding to a wide variety of emergency situations.

    Instructor: Tom Burroughs, NREMT/EMT-W, Team Leader, Washington County AR Search and Rescue Team

    Certifying Body - ASHI (American Safety and Health Institute)
    (this course is accepted by the Boy Scouts of America)

    Where:    Hobbs State Park visitor center located on Hwy 12 just east of the Hwy. 12/War Eagle Road intersection

    When:       November 24-25, 8:00 am to 5:00 pm each day

    Cost:       $135.00

    Register/more information:  SwiftwaterRescue@gmail.com
    479-595-1655


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