Friends of Hobbs
State Park-Conservation Area

Hobbs News - don't miss a thing!

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  • 25 Apr 2017 11:43 AM | Anonymous

    Day camps held all over northwest Arkansas offer a variety of outdoor escapes and unique learning opportunities for our youth.  For many years Hobbs State Park has been a leader in offering enlightening and educational Day Camps.  This June, Hobbs is going one step further in offering something special.  The Park is partnering with the Photographic Society of Northwest Arkansas to offer our first Summer Youth Photography Camp.

    The Camp will consist of morning sessions over a three-day period.   The sessions will include lectures, hands-on techniques, and outdoor photography walks.   Class Instruction will be given by Bob Coleman, Master Photographer.

    Equipment required:  Compact point-and-shoot camera, memory card, photo journal book; Optional equipment: DSLR camera and case, camera manual, laptop with picture editing program

    2017 Hobbs State Park 3-Day Photography Camp dates:
    June 27th – 29th            For ages 14-17                9 a.m.  – Noon

    Cost:  $100.00 per child for all three days. 

    Pre-registration and pre-payment required.   If you are a PSNWA member, register at the PSNWA web site.     http://www.psnwa.org                                      

    If not a PSNWA member, call Hobbs State Park at   479-789-5000 to register.  Note that space is limited for this event. 

    For more information contact Bob Coleman, bobcoleman@photo.com or Cynthia Cooper, info@psnwa.org


  • 20 Apr 2017 12:29 PM | Anonymous

    Summer Day Camps at Hobbs State Park bring the outdoor experience up close and personal.  When kids take a break from TV, cell phones, and the Internet, they rediscover their creative powers and engage the real world.

    Hobbs Day Camps are a perfect solution to “nature deficit disorder”.

    What’s included?  Hiking, games, live animals, nature-related programs, crafts, snacks, stream studies, a T-shirt, and more.  Hobbs State Park Day Camps run from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. for each of 3 days.

    The July 12 – 14   Hobbs Day Camp for ages 9 – 12 year-olds still has openings.  Call today to register.

    Cost:  $50.00/child + tax for all three days.  Preregistration and pre-payment required.  Call 479-789-5000 for more information and to register.  


  • 10 Apr 2017 12:04 PM | Anonymous

    Earth Day is an annual event where family-centered activities are held worldwide to demonstrate support for environmental protection.  It was first celebrated in 1970, and is now coordinated globally by the Earth Day Network and celebrated in more than 192 countries each year.

    Hobbs State Park – Conservation Area celebrates Earth Day on Saturday April 15th throughout the Park.

    7:30 am      Trail Run (4-7 miles)        Piney Trail Head
    Join Assistant Superintendent Jay Schneider on a guided trail run.  Whether you’re an experienced trail runner, or just getting started, this is a great opportunity to get out, be active, and meet some other runners. 

    8-10 am              Bird Hike       Van Winkle Trail Head
    Rick Jones is your leader on this one.  He has been a birder for over 60 years and loves to share his passion.  Take a walk through Van Winkle Hollow while the day is young and the birds are active.  Binoculars and field guides will be available, so don’t let that stop you from coming out! 

    9 am             Guided Bike Ride    Townsend Ridge Trail Head
    Don’t ride solo!  Grab your buddies and catch an OORC Group Ride lead by Brannan Pack.  This is open for beginners and intermediate riders, with leaders for the fast and slower paced.  This is a great time, place, and group to learn or enhance your fundamental skills.

    9:30 am        Wildflower Hike                Sinking Stream Trail Head
    Join Park interpreter Rebekah while you look for early spring wildflowers.  Don’t forget your cameras.

    10 am     Planting with Ark. Master Naturalists    Visitor Center
    Northwest Arkansas Master Naturalists are taking point on our Spring planting.  Come out and get your hands dirty with us as we give back to Mother Nature.  Bring gloves and weather appropriate clothing

    10 am – 1 pm       The Amazeum Visits Hobbs        Visitor Center
    That’s right!  The Amazeum is coming out to Hobbs.  Pody Gay and a crew from the Amazeum will be at the Hobbs visitor center with an activity designed to help you build and design.  Challenge your inner engineer. 

    10 am        Leave No Trace and Your Dog      Picnic Area/Visitor Center
    Many of us have heard of Leave No Trace, but what about for our furry companions?  Interpreter Chelsea will discuss how we can incorporate these skills and practices when bringing along our favorite four-legged friends on the trail. 

    10 am – 4 pm                Scavenger Hunt            Visitor Center  
    This is a self-guided activity designed to get you and your family exploring outside.  Stop in to the visitor center for a copy of the checklist, see what else we have going on, and then get outside!  

    10 am – 2 pm              Pretty Birds                  Visitor Center
    Join Phyllis Kane as she talks about some of the beautiful birds of northwest Arkansas. 

    11 am       Wildflower Hike         Sinking Stream Trail Head
    Join Master Naturalist Nancy Cunningham on a hike to explore the beauty that visits us every Spring. 

    1 pm        Leave No Trace and Your Dog        Picnic Area/Visitor Center
    Many of us have heard of Leave No Trace, but what about for our furry companions?  Interpreter Chelsea will discuss how we can incorporate these skills and practices when bringing along our favorite four-legged friends on the trail. 

    1 pm    Guided Hike/Glade Explained   Shaddox Hollow Trail Head
    Join new Volunteer Coordinator, Lauren Hildreth, as she explains the significance of a large glade restoration on Hobbs while hiking Shaddox Hollow Trail.

    2 pm – 4 pm                Recycled Crafts                   Visitor Center
    Join interpreter Rebekah to learn what it takes to recycle paper.

    All Hobbs Earth Day activities are Free.  For more information, questions, or directions call:  479-789-5000

    To learn more about upcoming Friends of Hobbs speakers and other park programs, go to: http://www.friendsofhobbs.com/  and  www.ArkansasStateParks.com/hobbsstateparkconservationarea


  • 06 Apr 2017 12:04 PM | Anonymous

    Many of our grandparents and parents used wild plants for food and medicine.  We all know about sassafras tea and the glorious taste of wild blackberries, but we have perhaps forgotten how extensively wild plants can be used as food sources.  In the early 1970's, information on native wild foods and medicinal uses of wild plants became very popular.  The well-known naturalist, Euell Gibbons, told us, “My love affair with nature is so deep that I am not satisfied with being a mere onlooker, or nature tourist.  I crave a more real and meaningful relationship.  The spicy teas and tasty delicacies I prepare from wild ingredients are the bread and wine in which I have communion and fellowship with nature, and with the Author of that nature.”

    Dr. Walkingstick, who will conduct the Wild Edibles Workshop at Hobbs State Park, has worked for the University of Arkansas, Division of Agriculture, Co-operative Extension Service as an Associate Professor of Extension Forestry since 1996.  Tamara serves on several boards including the Arkansas American Indian Center, Arkansas Women In Agriculture, the National Network of Forest Practitioners and is a member of the Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma.

    Walkingstick noted, “In this comprehensive 4-hour workshop, you will not only learn to identify some edible species of Arkansas native and non-native vegetation, you will also have the opportunity to sample tasty dishes including acorn scones. The presentation covers concepts of conservation, history, culture, and plant identification.  30 pages of wild edible recipes are included as well.”

    When:  Sunday May 7, 2016

    Time:  10 am to 2 pm

    Where: The workshop will be held at the Hobbs State Park visitor center located on Hwy 12 just east of the Hwy 12/War Eagle Road             intersection.

    Cost:  $15 per person + tax.  Class size is limited to 25.  Check or cash accepted on day of workshop:   Participants must pre-register.   For more information and to register, call:  479-789-5000

    To learn more about upcoming Friends of Hobbs speakers and other park programs, go to: http://www.friendsofhobbs.com/  and  www.ArkansasStateParks.com/hobbsstateparkconservationarea


  • 31 Mar 2017 10:02 AM | Anonymous

    “A day on the river is mighty fine, but two days, three days, maybe more is so divine”, says Flip Putthoff, Outdoor Reporter for the NW Ark. Democrat-Gazette.  Putthoff lives on Beaver Lake in the Rocky Branch area, and has been floating and fishing the streams of the Ozarks for more than 40 years. 

    The tradition of river floating and gravel bar camping runs deep in the Ozarks, and is the topic of Flip’s program at the Hobbs State Park Visitor Center.  He has taken countless overnight floats and trips on Ozark rivers that have lasted a week or more.  As flip puts it, “Our rivers are spectacular in beauty and are right here in our own back yard.  Gravel bars along our streams are a paradise for camping, offering solitude, peace, and the satisfying sound of flowing water to lull you to sleep.”

    Putthoff will share his list of the best rivers for floating on an overnight trip, or adventures lasting a week or more.  Find out what gear to take on a multi-day float, how to keep it dry, and what is the best times of year to go.  He will offer tips on finding wood, making a campfire, camp cooking tips, where to pitch the tent on a gravel bar, and how to get a good night’s sleep.  You do not want to miss this comprehensive program on overnight fishing on Ozark streams.

    When:  2:00 p.m. Sunday April 9, 2017

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

    Cost:  Free – The public is invited - For more information, call:  479-789-5000  

    This program is a continuation of the Friends of Hobbs monthly Speaker Series.   To learn more about upcoming Friends of Hobbs speakers and other park programs, go to: http://www.friendsofhobbs.com/  and  www.ArkansasStateParks.com/hobbsstateparkconservationarea


  • 25 Mar 2017 1:07 PM | Anonymous

    Mother Nature herself has become a frequent visitor to Hobbs State Park –Conservation Area.  She visits the park every second Saturday of the month and reads nature stories to her little followers.  Readings begin at 10:30 a.m.

    Story time will be followed by “hands-on” nature-craft activities.  Children of all ages are welcome, however most stories target children 3-6 years of age.

    April 8, 2017 – Dandelions – Stars in the Grass

    May 13, 2017 – Around the Pond

    June 10, 2017 – Caterpillar to Butterfly

    July 8, 2017 – Water Dance

    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.

    Cost:  Free, one hour events. 

    For more information call:  479-789-5000


  • 24 Mar 2017 10:26 AM | Anonymous

    It was back in 2001 that Al Knox began to volunteer for trail maintenance at Hobbs State Park.  For two years he regularly visited the Park with chain saw, weed eater, grass whip, McLeod, and Pulaski.  He maintained and re-routed old trail, while developing new sections.  Nothing made Al happier than to be in the woods maintaining trail for his fellow man and woman to enjoy.  Then in 2003 Knox was on the payroll.  He became the only Trail Maintenance Supervisor ever hired by any Arkansas state park.

    Hobbs State Park boasts 35 miles of trail with 24 of those miles being multi-use.  Multi-use means that in addition to hikers, the trail is used by horses, and non-motorized bikes.  Horses and bikes are exceptionally hard on trails; however, for 14 years Knox and his community volunteers have kept all 35 miles of trail in a continuous state of excellent repair…not an easy task.  It has been the Al Knox love of the woods and the love of his work that has endured him to the thousands of trail users that visit Hobbs State Park every year.  At age 81, Al will be hanging up his trail tools, trading them for a rod and reel and some well-deserved fishing time.

    In honor of the exceptional service he has provided the largest state park in Arkansas, “Al Knox Trail Day” has been established as an annual happening at Hobbs State Park.  The very first will be April 1, 2017.

    The public is invited to an open house Saturday April 1st from 10 am to 2 pm.  Cake and drink will be provided for all.  Al will want to see everyone who has enjoyed the Hobbs State Park trails.

    In addition to the open house, a full array of guided trail tours will take place the same day:

    Time                 Trail Head                     Trail                        Leader                 Trail Use Type
    8 am            Piney Trail head         Bashore Loop          Diane Gately                Hike
    8:30 am         Van Winkle                Sinking Stream        Rick Jones            Bird Watching
    9 am             Townsend Ridge          War Eagle                 Tomac                        Bike 
    9 am             Townsend Ridge          Little Clifty               Saddle Up                 Horse
    9:30 am         Visitor Center                OPT                   Rebekah Penny               Hike
    10 am           Pigeon Roost             Dry Creek                  Kathy Mayhue        Photography
                                                           2.5 miles down to
                                                           Water and back         Joan Reynolds       Wildflowers

    10am – 2 pm  Visitor Center      Open House     Spend time with Al

    Time               Trail Head                     Trail                         Leader            Trail Use Type
    2 pm                Piney                   Dutton Hollow              Chelsea            Hike
    2:30 pm      Shaddox Hollow      Shaddox Hollow            Nikki                Hike
    3:30 pm        Van Winkle                Van Winkle                 Steve               Hike


  • 23 Mar 2017 1:15 PM | Anonymous

    Mercury will be at its greatest eastern elongation on April 1st this year.  In astronomy, a planet's elongation is the angle between the planet and the Sun as seen from the Earth.  When an inner planet is at its largest angle away from the Sun it is in a prime viewing condition.  Greatest eastern elongation is the phrase to describe when a planet is in this prime viewing condition just after sunset.  

    According to the Sugar Creek Astronomical Society president, Katherine Auld, “Our evening at Hobbs State Park will begin with a short lecture explaining more about the greatest elongation for both the inner and outer planets.  Following will be a short explanation of viewing the night sky.  We will then proceed outside to view Mercury and some deep sky objects.  We will also have a basket of books for young people to participate in Reading Under the Stars.”

    What to Bring: 

    • Flashlight (covered with a red cloth or red balloon)
    • Binoculars
    • Folding chair – one per person`
    • Star chart (if you have one)

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

    When:  Saturday April 1, 2017

    • Classroom instruction – 6:45 p.m.
    • Night viewing about 7:45 p.m.

    Cost:  Free – Public is invited:  Great for scout groups and families

     For more information call:  479-789-5000


  • 17 Mar 2017 2:46 PM | Anonymous

    Hobbs State Park offers a variety of family orientated activities during the upcoming Spring Break.  In addition to some indoor happenings, many hikes, short and longer, are on the agenda.  Choose what you like, and don’t forget the outstanding exhibits at the Hobbs State Park visitor center.

    Saturday March 18

    Nature   Hike    10 am             45 min     Ozark Plateau Trail
    Do you know the destination of a trail?  And just what is “Hidden Diversity”? Join Interpreter Steve to learn more about your State Park.

    Puffballs in the Sky          12 pm               30 Min.             Visitor Center
    Is a cloud just a cloud?  No sir!  Clouds can tell us things.  Clouds can do things.  Do you know what thunder really is?  Why do tornadoes form in clouds?  Join Park Interpreter Steve to learn about our amazing clouds…puffballs in the sky.

    Photographing Trail Trees    2 pm – 5:30 pm    Meet at the visitor center
    Al Knox, Trail Maintenance Supervisor at Hobbs State Park, will present a synopsis of the Marker trees he has found at the Park, and Cleeo Wright, Events Coordinator for the PSNWA will discuss the different ways one might photograph these or any other trees.  Techniques might include the tree as the primary visual, the details of the tree, how the tree looks in different seasons, different perspectives utilizing foreground elements, trees under infrared wavelength, or how black and white can help isolate shapes and form. Following the classroom introduction, the group will drive to the sites of three trail trees for photographic sessions.  Photographers of all abilities are invited to participate. Free

    The Lorax                             3 pm                 30 min.             Visitor Center
    Listen in as interpreter Steve reads the Lorax.  Do you know what the Lorax was?  He wasn’t just that “orange colored dude”.  Do you know who the most important character in the story was?  It’s not the Lorax.

    Sunday March 19

    Nature   Hike    11 am             45 min     Ozark Plateau Trail
    Do you know the destination of a trail?  And just what is “Hidden Diversity”? Join Interpreter Steve to learn more about your State Park.

    Fly Casting           12:00 pm      4 hours        Visitor Center 
    Those who wish to learn the basics of fly casting will want to attend the Fly Casting 101 workshop to be held at the Hobbs State Park – Conservation Area visitor center Sunday March 19, 2017 from 12:00 p.m. to 4 p.m.  Two hours of instruction will be in the classroom, and two hours will be outside.  Minimum age is 12 yrs.  Cost:  $35 per person + tax.  Class size is limited to 15.  Reservations and pre-payment required.  Call:  479-789-5000

    Arkansas Symbols       1 pm            25 minutes              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 interpreter Steve to learn some of the symbols of Arkansas. 

    The Lorax                  3 pm                 30 min.             Visitor Center
    Listen in as interpreter Steve reads the Lorax.  Do you know what the Lorax was?  He wasn’t just that “orange colored dude”.  Do you know who the most important character in the story was?  It’s not the Lorax.

    Monday March 20

    Great Arkansas Mammal Quiz         All Day           Visitor Center
    Test your knowledge of our northwest Arkansas mammals.  Who will do better?  Mom?  Dad?  Or the kids?

    Morning Bird Walk   9:00 am   1 hour    Historic Van Winkle Hollow
    Join Assistant superintendent Jay as he guides you through Historic Van Winkle Hollow.  What a great place to see our feathered friends!

    Live Box Turtle   2:00 pm               30 min.        Visitor Center
    Join superintendent Jay with one of his best friends, Mr. Turtle.  You will be surprised to find how much there is to learn about our native box turtles.

    Tuesday March 21

    Exhibit Scavenger Hunt         All Day              Visitor Center
    Families are invited to participate in a self-guided scavenger hunt through the visitor center and its exhibit area. Discover the many wonders of this facility and the park as you complete this hunt together.  Receive a prize at the front desk when you turn in your scavenger hunt sheet.

    Native Plant Bed Maintenance   9:00 am     2-3 hours   Visitor Center
    Join Hobbs State Park Staff and the Northwest Arkansas Master Naturalists for a morning of native plant spring cleaning.  We will be cutting back grasses and pulling weeds to prepare these native plant beds for spring.  Native plant information, tools, gloves, and lunch will be provided.

    Nature Detective Hike       2:00 pm     45 min.            Visitor Center
    There is a nature mystery to be solved here at Hobbs State Park, and we need your help to solve this case.  Join a Park interpreter to discover how knowledge is power when solving nature mysteries in Arkansas State Parks.

    Wednesday March 22

    Scavenger Hunt               All day long         Visitor Center
    Families are invited to participate in a self-guided scavenger hunt through the visitor center and its exhibit area. Discover the many wonders of this facility and the park as you complete this hunt together. Receive a prize at the front desk when you turn in your scavenger hunt sheet.

    Bird Discovery            10:00 am – noon    West side of Visitor Center
    The Hobbs State Park bird feeders bring in a wide variety of our colorful feathered friends up real close.  Join interpreter Chelsea, outside, at the west side of the visitor center.  She will provide binoculars for everyone so you can look at our pretty, flying friends right in the eye.

    Nature Hike        11 am             45 min     Ozark Plateau Trail
    Do you know the destination of a trail?  And just what is “Hidden Diversity”?
    Join Interpreter Steve to learn more about your State Park.

    Shaddox Hollow Hike   1:00 pm    1 ½ hours    Shaddox Hollow Trail
    Join interpreter Chelsea for a fun 1 ½ mile hike through the Hobbs State Park woods.  See the new glade clearing, limestone bluffs, karst features, and a critter or two.

    Enlightening Hike      2:00 pm          45 min.       Ozark Plateau Trail
    Do you know the destination of a trail?  And just what is “Hidden Diversity”?
    Join Interpreter Steve to learn more about your State Park.

    Thursday March 23

    Bird Discovery        10:00 am – noon          West side of Visitor Center
    The Hobbs State Park bird feeders bring in a wide variety of our colorful feathered friends up real close.  Join interpreter Chelsea, outside, at the west side of the visitor center.  She will provide binoculars for everyone so you can look at our pretty, flying friends right in the eye.

    Nature Hike        11 am             45 min     Ozark Plateau Trail
    Do you know the destination of a trail?  And just what is “Hidden Diversity”?
    Join Interpreter Steve to learn more about your State Park.

    Dutton Hollow Hike      1:00 pm        2 hours        Dutton Hollow Loop
    Hwy 12 to Piney Road south…meet at the Piney Road multi-use trail parking lot.  Dutton Hollow offers wildflowers, limestone bluffs, large paw paw patch, and a sink hole.

    Historic Van Winkle hike    3 pm      1 hour    Van Winkle Trail Head
    Join 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 1870’s.  The area is on the National Register of Historic Places.

    Friday March 24

    Scavenger Hunt    All day long         Visitor Center
    Families are invited to participate in a self-guided scavenger hunt through the visitor center and its exhibit area. Discover the many wonders of this facility and the park as you complete this hunt together. Receive a prize at the front desk when you turn in your scavenger hunt sheet.

    Do you know your NW Ark. Mammals?    10 am -1 pm    Visitor Center
    Join interpreter Steve while you try to identify common mammals that we see every day in northwest Arkansas.

    Bayshore Ridge Loop Hike    1:00 pm      2 hours        Piney Road parking lot
    Meet interpreter Chelsea at the Piney Road parking lot, and enjoy an easy 4-mile hike.  This trail has a spur to a wonderful overlook of Beaver Lake.

    Nature Hike    3:00 pm            45 min     Ozark Plateau Trail
    Do you know the destination of a trail?  And just what is “Hidden Diversity”?
    Join Interpreter Steve to learn more about your State Park.

    Saturday March 25

    Nature   Hike            10 am             45 min     Ozark Plateau Trail
    Do you know the destination of a trail?  And just what is “Hidden Diversity”?
    Join Interpreter Steve to learn more about your State Park.

    Leave No Trace:  The 7 Principals     1 pm         35 minutes   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.

    Venomous Snakes of Arkansas    3:00 pm     20 min.   Visitor Center
    Everyone who lives in Arkansas should be aware of what venomous snakes we have and what they look like.  This short program identifies the 6 venomous snakes that we have in Arkansas, five of which are found in northwest Arkansas.

    Sunday March 26

    Nature   Hike    11 am             45 min     Ozark Plateau Trail
    Do you know the destination of a trail?  And just what is “Hidden Diversity”?
    Join Interpreter Steve to learn more about your State Park.

    Tale of the Turtle        1 pm              20 Minutes     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? 

    Galls                    3 pm                 20 min                  Visitor Center
    Is it a gall or isn’t it? – Hey – What is a gall?   How are they formed?  Join interpreter Steve to learn the basics of what galls are all about.


  • 17 Mar 2017 1:29 PM | Anonymous

    Pigeon Roost Trail campsites will soon require reservations and a fee.  There will be a per campsite fee of $12 a night and must be reserved at https://www.arkansasstateparks.com or https://www.reserveamerica.com or by calling 1-877-879-2741. Any questions please contact Hobbs State Park at 479-789-5000.

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