Friends of Hobbs
State Park-Conservation Area

Hobbs News - don't miss a thing!

  • 24 Sep 2018 10:20 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    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

  • 24 Sep 2018 10:07 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    A host of FREE and fun family-orientated events will take place at Hobbs State Park – Conservation Area Sunday October 7, 2018 Activities will take place at Historical Van Winkle Hollow as well as the Park’s visitor center, both located on Hwy 12 east of Rogers.  Bring the entire family to learn how some things were done in the past.

    Taking place at Hobbs State Park visitor center  

    See demonstrations from 1:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.  

    • Weavers
    • Smockers
    • Lace makers
    • Spinners
    • Music
    • “Table top” programs
    • Kid’s craft
    • Free ice cream

    Taking place at Historic Van Winkle Hollow
    The Van Winkle Hollow events (only) have been cancelled due to weather concerns

    • Blacksmith Demonstration (You will love his beard)
    • Early Food Preservation (How did they do it?)
    • Old Timey Games (Are you any good walking on stilts?)
    • Music (Tap that foot)
    • Stone Tool making Demonstration (Amazing – and kids do it)
    • Van Winkle Historical Presentation (Great history)
    • Apothecary Shoppe (Strange recipes) (Leeches?)
    • Dutch Oven Demonstration (Holy yum!)
    • Pearling (The hard way to make buttons)
    • Dowsing Demonstration (It really works.)
    • Mountain Woman (Ask her about hunting wild turkeys.)
    • “Snake Oil” Salesman (Don’t let him sell anything to you!)
    • Pioneer Homesteader (Want to make some butter.  She will let you)
    • Tall Tales Tellers (Would they lie to you? – Yes!)

    All of these family activities are FREE and the public is very welcome.    For more information, call:  479-789-5000

  • 19 Sep 2018 10:28 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    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:

  • 19 Sep 2018 10:27 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    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

  • 17 Sep 2018 12:10 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    If you have ever asked yourself, “How can I get the most out of my camera when I photograph Nature?”, then the upcoming, free program presented by the Photographic Society of Northwest Arkansas might be what you are looking for.

    The program is not for the professional…beginners only please.  Don’t be bashful, or self-conscious because you don’t have a 3-foot long lens on your camera.  You don’t need it.  That’s not what this program is about.  It truly is for novices, greenhorns, and rookies.

    Also note the time of year of this presentation.  We don’t have a lot of wildflowers and other plants with lush foliage to photograph in late September.  Here’s the point.  No matter what time of year it is, there is ALWAYS something wonderful to photograph.  That’s what you will learn from Cleeo Wright, Nature Photographer, with the Photographic Society of Northwest Arkansas (PSNWA).

    Cleeo will present a lecture in the Hobbs State Park visitor center on Beginning Nature Photography.  Afterwards he will help all participants identify photographic “subjects” around the visitor center, and how best to photograph them with the camera that you bring.  This will be your program.  You ask the specific questions so you will get the specific knowledge that you are seeking as a Nature Photography learner.  Don’t pass up this extraordinary opportunity to learn basic Nature Photography from a professional in that field.

    Note:  Participants need to be familiar with the basic functions of their camera.  The lecture will help you understand how to utilize the functions your camera has to offer.  

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

    When:    Saturday September 22, 2018

    Time:      4:00 pm lecture by Cleo Wright, Nature photographer from the Photographic Society of Northwest Arkansas.   Outside photo shoot follows the lecture.    


    Cost:       Free:  The public is invited.

    For more information, call:  479-789-5000   

    This program is a cooperative effort between the Photographic Society of Northwest Arkansas and Hobbs State Park.  To learn more about the PSNWA and upcoming Hobbs State Park programs, go to: and  and

  • 10 Sep 2018 11:21 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    What do the following have in common:  The Irish Potato Famine, the loss of the American chestnut/Ozark chinquapin, death of American elm trees in our forests, the return of de-tasseling corn, the preference of Brits for tea instead of coffee, and the source of LSD?  All of these are the result of plant diseases.  Plant disease can change the landscape as well as change human history.

    Rose Gergerich, professor emeritus, U of A, explains, “I am a plant pathologist.  In my earlier life (before retirement), I was a professor in the Department of Plant Pathology at the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville.   I've always wanted to develop a talk on the social impact of plant diseases.  This would include the Irish Potato Famine, the introduction of the fungi that cause chestnut blight and Dutch elm disease, the southern corn leaf blight epidemic, etc.  All of these diseases had major socio-economic impacts in the US.  Plant disease epidemics will be discussed to illustrate the past and present vulnerability of the plants that sustain us all.  I will follow up on the actions that need to be taken to avoid future epidemics such as these.”

    Don’t miss this informative and important program.

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

    When:    September 16, 2018 - 2:00 pm

    Cost:       Free

    This program is a continuation of the Friends of Hobbs Speaker Series.   

  • 05 Sep 2018 4:04 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    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 since 1996.  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 cook and sample tasty dishes including sunchoke soup, persimmon crisp, muscadine ice cream, and more. The presentation covers concepts of conservation, history, culture, and plant identification.  If you would like four hours of comradery, cooking, and eating, then this workshop is for you.”

    When:  Saturday September 15, 2018

    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 -  Check or cash accepted on day of workshop:   Participants must pre-register.   For more information and to register, call:  479-789-5000

  • 04 Sep 2018 11:41 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    You cannot beat Mother Nature and Beaver Lake.  What a great way to spend a late afternoon with your spouse or friend on the last Friday of Fall.  Take a lake cruise on beautiful Beaver Lake guided by a park interpreter.  Stop off at Ventris Trails End Resort for a scrumptious dinner consisting of smothered pork chops, mashed potatoes with white gravy, green beans, dinner roll, French Onion soup, salad, tea, coffee, or lemonade.  If a vegetarian option is your preference, you get a portabella sandwich with sautéed green peppers & onions, garlic mayo and Swiss cheese.  Ventris Trails End Resort is famous for their desserts, and this cruise comes with chocolate cake.    

    After some surprise entertainment, hop back onto the boat to catch a beautiful sunset as we look forward to the colors and fragrances of fall.   

    When:  Friday September 21, 2018

    Time:  Leave Rocky Branch Marina promptly at 4:00 p.m. - Dinner at 5:00 p.m.  Cruise with dinner is approximately 3 hours long.

    Cost:  $40.00/person + tax

    Registration and prepayment required.  For more information and to register, call 479-789-5000

  • 04 Sep 2018 11:40 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Twenty-one years after Beaver Dam was completed, the 30-acre Blackburn Creek Fish Nursery Pond on Beaver Lake was in place, providing fingerling species for the fishing enthusiast.  Blackburn Creek Pond is the first on-site rearing pond to be established in this area.  Fingerling species raised here include: walleye, small mouth bass, blue and channel catfish, red-ear sunfish, plus white and black crappie.  200,000 to 300,000 fingerlings of various species are released each year. 

    One of the big benefits of a fish nursery pond translates into very little fish mortality when fish are released.  If fish have to be trucked to a location to be stocked, the mortality rate sometimes can be high.   At the time of the actual fish release, the quick dump into the lake from the nursery pond is quick with little or no stress on the fish.  Arkansas Game and Fish Biologists and other specialists in the field work hard to keep Beaver Lake in the forefront of fish production.

    Jon Stein is a District Fisheries Supervisor who manages fish populations in lakes and rivers in 5 counties in NWA.  According to Stein, “I have worked with AGFC for 15 years and have been working in the Fisheries Field for 23 years.  I received a Master of Science Degree from Emporia State University in Kansas, and have worked for the state natural resources agencies of Colorado, Wyoming, Kansas, and Arkansas.  

    Fisheries are made up of fish, habitat, and people.  It is our job as fisheries managers to make sure that fish populations in the district are in good health and ensure that anglers have plenty of fish to catch.  Biologists need to sample fish populations in lakes and rivers with various sampling techniques (electrofishing or netting).  We obtain valuable information about fish populations through sampling.  Based on results from sampling Beaver Lake, we determine stocking rates of various fish species in the lake.  Beaver Lake geets stocked annually using the Beaver Lake Fish Nursery Pond.   My presentation will discuss the operation of this appreciated hatchery.”

    If you are a fisherman, you will not want to miss this interesting program on such a valuable asset to us here in northwest Arkansas.

    • When:   Sunday September 9, 2018         2:00 pm
    • 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                        
    For more information, call:  479-789-5000

  • 30 Aug 2018 2:53 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Saturn is known as the “WOW” planet.  Whenever someone first views it through a telescope and sees the remarkable rings with their own eyes, it is definitely a WOW moment for them.   In 1610, Galileo Galilei became the first astronomer to identify the rings around our second largest planet.  Saturn also positions itself as the sixth planet from the sun and the most distant that we can see with the naked eye. 

    Paul Anderson, member of the Sugar Creek Astronomical Society and program presenter at Hobbs State Park, said, “After a short classroom review of what will be in the night sky, we will journey outside for a look through our powerful telescopes to see what makes Saturn such an unbelievably beautiful planet.  We will examine its makeup and look closer at the rings.  Finally, we will look at a few of the 62 moons of Saturn which vary in diameter from .62 miles to 7,869 miles.

    Join us on Saturday, September 8th to find out more about the planet Saturn and how to best observe the visible planets this fall: Saturn, Jupiter, Venus, and Mars.”

    What to Bring if you can:

    ·      Camera and a Tripod for Night Sky Photography  
    ·      Flashlight (covered with a red cloth or red balloon)
    ·      Binoculars and/or telescope (if you have)
    ·      Folding chair – one per person
    ·      Star chart (if you have one)

    When:   Saturday September 8, 2018        

                      7:00 pm:  Lecture
                      8:00 pm:  Night Sky Viewing

    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
    For more information, call:  479-789-5000

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