Fall Fun Guide: Top 10 things for families to do this fall in Northwest Arkansas!

Fall Fun Guide 2016

There are so many fun things to enjoy in Northwest Arkansas this fall, so we rounded up 10 of the best.

Here’s a good list to get your fall started off right:

farmland adventures 2016Just click on the orange highlighted words to find out more about each activity, and CLICK HERE to see a printer-friendly Fall Fun Guide that lists even more events/activities! It’s sponsored by Farmland Adventures!

Just print out the list and keep it on your fridge or in your purse for a quick reminder of things to do over the next few months. You can also save it to your phone for a quick peek when you’re looking for fall fun activities.

1. Pumpkin picking and corn maze fun. If you want to pick your own pumpkin, let the kids pet some cute animals, play in a corn maze and hang out on the farm for a few hours, there are several options around here, including Farmland Adventures.

See our printable for more pumpkin patches and corn mazes, including dates of operation.

2. County fair time! The Washington County Fair started on Tuesday and will run through Saturday, Sept. 3, this year!

carousel washington county fair

3. Take a scenic stroll! The fall foliage on the Crystal Bridges Museum trails are beautiful this time of year, so you should go take a stroll! They have several group events scheduled if you want to enjoy the trails with a guide. And look for Fall Preschool Playdates at the museum where kids can enjoy art projects, story time, and creative play inspired by fall’s changing colors.

4. Festivals and antiques! If you like visiting hometown festivals, the Arkansas Apple Festival in Lincoln is coming up Sept. 30, Oct. 1-2. On the drive to the festival down Highway 62, you can stop off in Prairie Grove and shop some of our favorite little antique stores (including Daisies and Olives and The Summit Hill Cottage Shoppe). For more shopping, try The Junk Ranch event on Sept. 30 and Oct. 1, which has 100+ vendors in a big barn and on the surrounding grounds. You should also take some time to visit Prairie Grove Battlefield State Park. The battlefield is SO PRETTY in the fall and there are lots of walking trails to enjoy, historical markers to read and a playground for the kids.

war eagle5. Craft fairs galore! Of course, there are plenty of craft fairs to visit in October, including the HUGE War Eagle Mill Arts & Crafts Fair in Rogers on Oct. 13-16.

Check out our printable list for LOTS more craft fair listings!

6. Leaves to see! Of course, this time of year means it’s time to drive I-49 or the Pig Trail Scenic Byway to ooh and ahhh over the trees that are changing into their brightly-colored fall clothes.

7. Call those Hogs! You really should enjoy a Razorback football game this fall or take part in the University of Arkansas Homecoming, which is Oct. 25-31 this year. The Dickson Street Parade and Homecoming Pep Rally will be on Friday, Oct. 14. The parade will run from the Highland intersection to the Chi Omega Greek Theatre. Just find yourself a spot on Dickson Street and see the Arkansas Spirit Squads, Razorback Marching Band, Homecoming Court, Greek Floats and more.


8. Shop unique boutiques! In early November, there’s the NWA Boutique Show to enjoy! This show is held each fall in Northwest Arkansas and will be on Nov. 11-12 this year. We’ll be there with a booth, so be sure to stop by and say hello (plus sign up for our giveaway)! This juried show features boutique booths with custom and one-of-a-kind creations from local and regional designers. Clothing, jewelry, art, stationery, gifts, personalized items, home décor, furniture, baby essentials and more. See you there!

fayetteville farmer's market9. Check out the farmer’s markets around NWA. The various farmer’s markets in hometowns across NWA run through the fall, so if you haven’t been out to one yet, you should visit those while you can!

Here are the links to each (our printable lists the dates that each season ends):

10. Festivals and Halloween events! There are SO MANY festivals and Halloween events coming up in NWA! Click here to see a big list of festival dates/Halloween events on our printable!

pumpkin200Note from the mamas: We’ll keep writing about fall fun/Halloween activities here on nwaMotherlode as the season continues, so visit often!

Outings Under $20: Priceless Nights at the Amazeum/Free Tuesday Nights at BGO!

Outings under $20 in NWA, 650

Mamas, want to make sure you know about upcoming Amazeum’s Priceless Nights events — as well as the Tuesday Nights events at the Botanical Garden of the Ozarks.

Both are thanks to grants from Tyson Foods.

amazeum boltAt the Priceless Nights events at the Amazeum, you basically you pay-as-you-wish, so families can visit on these special nights and make a donation instead of paying regular admission.

Priceless Nights are on Wednesdays from 4 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. in July and August. No worries, though, you’ll find the same quality of programs and learning opportunities as any other time the Amazeum is open.

For example, your family can try the Hershey’s Lab to conduct scientific experiments and the 3M Tinkering Hub will have tinkering activities for guests age 7 years and older.

Here are the next Priceless Nights dates:

  • July 20 & 27
  • August 3, 10, 17, 24, 31

We hope to see you SOON at the Amazeum!

The first annual “Tyson Foods Tuesday Nights” will continue every Tuesday through Aug. 30 at the Botanical Garden of the Ozarks.

On Tuesday nights, BGO is extending its hours until 8 p.m. and offer a variety of programming, including music, cooking demonstrations, educational experiences and gardening tips. This is all FREE and runs 5-8 p.m. on Tuesdays.

Event alert, Tuesday, July 19: July is National Hot Dog Month, and the Botanical Garden of the Ozarks, along with Tyson Foods, is celebrating on Tuesday (tomorrow night!) with a free cooking demonstration.

A graduate of Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts in San Francisco, Tyson Chef Ashley Zulpo will be demonstrating a fresh take on everyone’s summer favorite—the hot dog. But not just any hot dog, a West Coast Chicken Dog. YES, samples will be provided! The cooking class will be held on the Tyson Terrace between 6 and 7 p.m.

Chef Zulpo will also be sharing her tips on how to easily integrate fresh vegetables to your meals, and BGO Gardeners will be in the Vegetable Garden to answer any questions.

You’re also welcome to opt out of the food demonstration and simply enjoy the peace and tranquility of the Garden.

Click here to read more about Tyson Foods Tuesday Nights!

BGO Tuesday nights

Outings Under $20: ‘Mother Nature’ meets and reads to kids at Hobbs State Park

Hobbs State Park

Mother Nature herself has become a frequent visitor to the Hobbs State Park Conservation Area in Rogers.  She visits the park every second Saturday of the month and reads nature stories to her little followers.

The next event is this Saturday (July 9th) and all the story times begin at 10:30 a.m.

Stories are followed by “hands-on” nature-craft activities and everything is free.  Children of all ages are welcome, however most stories target children 3-6 year’s old.

  • July 9      “Buggy About Bugs”
  • Aug. 13   “Itsy Bitsy Spider”
  • Sept. 10   “Let’s Be Nature Detectives”
  • Oct. 8      “Three Cheers for Trees”

You can meet Mother Nature in the lobby of the Hobbs State Park Conservation Area visitor center, which is on Hwy 12 just east of the Hwy 12/War Eagle Road intersection.

For more information call 479-789-5000 or click here.

The best snow cone stands in Northwest Arkansas!

snow cone graphic from printableUPDATED for Summer 2016: We love a sweet, syrupy snow cone on a hot summer day!

snow coneWe rounded up a list of where you can find great snow cones throughout Northwest Arkansas. If you don’t see your favorite snow cone stand on the list, email us and let us know where it is!

Click HERE to download a printer-friendly version of this list. Keep it in your purse or car so you’ll know where to go for an icy treat.

Note: We’ve linked to as many of the businesses below as possible so you can visit their Facebook page to check for hours of operation (and list of flavors) before you visit.


Shave the Planet: 3078 N. College Ave. (Next to the Bank of Fayetteville and Hobby Lobby)

Tropical Sno: 464 E. Joyce Blvd. (near TJ Maxx and Best Buy)


Shave the Planet: 1308 N. Thompson (Across from AQ Chicken and Kum&Go)

Shave the Planet: 2940 W. Sunset Ave. (in front of Malco Theater and Harps grocery store)


The Ice Box (formerly Sugar Shack): 1115 N. Dixieland Rd. (in the Golf Mountain parking lot)


The Frozen Coconut: 718 N. 2nd St. (across from Harps, near the Rogers Activity Center)

The Ice Box (formerly Cam’s Mountain Sno): Walnut Rd. (in the Frisco Station Mall parking lot near Hobby Lobby)

Brain Freeze Sno & Whips: 4205 S. Pleasant Crossing Blvd. (in the Burlington parking lot)


The Chill Zone: 214 NE “A” St. (by the Lawrence Plaza Splash Pad)

Brain Freeze of Bentonville: 200 SW Regional Airport Blvd. (just off Rainbow Curve)

Frozen Tung: 604 Southwest A Street

Kona Ice: Shaved ice truck that travels around Northwest Arkansas (Call for today’s location.)

sno cone slider

Outings Under $20: List of storytimes at Northwest Arkansas public libraries

Outings under $20 in NWA, 650

Did you know our local libraries have storytime in the summer, too?

Here’s a list of each library’s days/times for Summer 2016:

Fayetteville Public Library

Baby Bookworms, Ages birth to 24 months:

This story time recognizes the developmental needs and attention spans of the children this age. Parents/Caregivers interact with their babies through a variety of nursery rhymes, action rhymes, songs, and stories. Sign up is not required.

Find a storytime at FPL

Having fun at Fayetteville Public Library’s storytime!

Monday and Thursday @ 9:45 am, Walker Community Room

[Watch Live] Thursdays only

Toddler Time, Ages 2 – 3:

Toddler Time gives special care to include opportunities for movement, short, developmentally-appropriate stories, and weekly repetition with the goal to develop an early appreciation of books and stories, foster self-esteem in young children, and have fun! Sign up is not required.

Monday and Thursday @ 10:30 am, Walmart Storytime Room

[Watch Live] Thursdays only

Preschool Storytime, Ages 3 – 5:

These 30-minute programs feature a variety of stories, music, puppetry, finger plays and a craft. Sign up is not required.

Tuesday and Wednesday @ 10:30 am, Walmart Storytime Room

[Watch Live] Wednesdays only

book wormFun Side Note: The Fayetteville Public Library also has a dial-a-story option where you can call and hear their librarians read stories! Just call 479-856-7200. FPL also has a cafe just inside the front doors for you to sit down and have snacks and drinks (including caffeine for mama!). You can buy snacks or bring your own. There’s seating inside and outside!

CLICK HERE for more info about FPL story times.

Springdale Public Library

Rattle & Rhyme Toddler Time, Birth through Age 3:

This program is a great way for caregivers to introduce toddlers to language, literature and the Library through stories, songs and rhymes.

Wednesdays, 9:30 am & 11 am, Children’s Department

children's booksWigglers & Jigglers Pre-School Story Time, Ages 3-5:

Pre-school Story Time gives children and their caregivers the opportunity to enjoy books, songs, puppets, fingerplays, and a simple craft project.

Tuesdays & Wednesdays, 9:30 am, 11:00 am, & 2:00 pm, Children’s Auditorium

Laugh & Learn Library Lab, Grades K-3:

These fun-filled programs feature stories, songs, activities and crafts. Children of all abilities are welcome! Adults are not required to attend school-age programs; however, an adult must stay with children who are 11 years old and under at all times while in the Library.

Tuesdays & Wednesdays, 9:30 am, 11:00 am, & 2:00 pm, Shiloh Room

ATLAS (At the Library All Summer), Grades 4-6:

Tuesdays, 9:30 am & 11:00 am, Children’s Department

book wormFun Side Note: The Springdale Library is next to the “duck park” (otherwise known as Murphy Park), so after you pick out your books, you can go have a picnic and share your bread crumbs with the ducks and geese!  There’s also a playground, walking trail, picnic tables and more.

Click here to visit the SPL website for more info on story times and themes!

Rogers Public Library

Baby Storytime, Ages birth to 24 months:

Stories, rhymes, songs, and more! This program is a great way to introduce your little one to the Library, incorporating lots of movement, toys with textures, bells, and sensory activities! Best for children between the ages of 0-24 months.

rpl kids

Reading at Rogers Public Library

Every Thursday @10:30 am

Toddler Storytime, Ages 2-3:

Listen to stories, sing songs, wiggle and move at this active storytime best for children between the ages of 2 and 3. This 20-25 minute storytime will be followed by hands-on, sensory activities perfect for young explorers!

Every Monday @9:30 am

book wormFun Side Note: The Rogers Public Library offers “Fun With Reading Kits” which are PERFECT for summer road trips or plane ride. Fun with Reading Kits are bundles of library materials including books, audiobooks, and/or magazines pulled by Children’s Library staff and selected specifically for your children. You just fill out a form and they pull materials sure to keep your children occupied based on your child’s age and interests. You can self-select the date you would like to pick up the materials and when you will return them after your vacation. Click here to read more about that neat little perk!

Click here to visit the RPL library website for more info on story times and other summer fun!

Bentonville Public Library

Baby Play & Rhyme Time, Birth to 24 months

Recognizing the developmental needs and attention spans of young children, Baby Play & Rhyme Time is an approximate 15 minute program that encourages interaction through simple books, bubbles, music, rhymes and playtime. This program gives your baby the opportunity to hear lots of language while you get to know other young families.

Thursday @ 9:30 am

Tales & Tunes for Toddlers, Ages 2-3:

Tales & Tunes for Toddlers is a short 20 minute active program that promotes positive learning experiences through short picture books, rhymes, fingerplays, flannel boards, puppetry and weekly repetition. Parents and children are encouraged to sit together for easy interaction. Tales & Tunes for Toddlers will help your child develop an early appreciation for books while encouraging emerging language skills. Coloring sheets follow storytime.

Bentonville Public Library mascot

Ardy is BPL’s children’s library mascot!

Tuesday & Wednesday @ 9:30 am

Preschool Stories, ages 3-5:

Preschool Stories is a 30 minute program sharing the best of children’s literature and illustrations, action rhymes and songs. This program will build language, literacy and listening skills while developing a love of books, the library and the joy of reading. Related craft activities will explore a variety of media.

Tuesday, Wednesday & Thursday @ 10:30 am

Evening Storytime, for families:

Evening Storytime is a quiet 30 minute family storytime where children can unwind with books, rhymes, songs and crafts. Come to Evening Storytime to prepare your children for lifelong learning , while experiencing an enjoyable evening at the Library! Families are encouraged to participate and to borrow related materials to read together at home.

Tuesday @ 6:30 pm

Saturday Storytime, for families:

Make the most of your weekend by joining us for Saturday Storytime, where the whole family shares and enjoy books, songs, rhymes and craft activities that help children build critical language, literacy and listening skills. At Saturday Storytime, we learn and have fun!

Saturday @ 2:00 pm

book wormFun Side Note: In recent years, Bentonville has developed a master trail plan that focuses on an interconnected trail system that benefits health and wellness for citizens. BPL is considered a point of interest on the City’’s Downtown Trail.  A short stroll from Bentonville Public Library, people can visit the Peel Mansion and Heritage Garden, the Bentonville Square, Walmart Visitor’s Center, Compton Gardens and Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art.

CLICK HERE to visit the BPL website and learn about all their fun activities!

 guess-how-much-bookBe sure to visit each library’s website for other fun events they have planned for the summer!