• Where should we eat in Northwest Arkansas? Restaurant recommendations by local food lovers
  • Not native to Northwest Arkansas? Welcome Wagon 2.0 to the rescue!

How to set up parental controls on kids’ smartphones

mamas on magic 107.9Hi Northwest Arkansas mamas! This week on our Mamas on Magic 107.9 radio segment, we’ve been talking about technology and parenting. Smartphones are a HUGE part of that discussion, so here are a few quick videos that will show you how to easily set up parental controls on your kids’ smartphones.

Remember, if you don’t set up parental controls on a kid’s smartphone, they can literally see ANYTHING that’s on the Internet. Even if they’re not intentionally searching for inappropriate content, we all know how easy it is to see links to graphic images and videos online without even looking for them.

Hope these videos help you get your kids’ phones set up correctly with parental controls so they’re safer to use. This first video is for iPhone users.

This second video is for Android users.

Northwest Arkansas Calendar Events, Halloween Activities + Craft Fairs: October 2015

Calendar logo, The Jones Center

Halloween 2015 Events

Fall Carnival, Parsons Stadium

Date: Sept. 30-Oct. 4

Time: Varies

Location: Parsons Stadium, Springdale

More info: Click here

Movie in the Park, Ghostbusters

family movie night, elm springsThis Saturday (October 3), the Elm Springs Police Department is hosting the first-ever “Movie In The Park,” where they will show Ghostbusters on a large outdoor screen and provide free hot dogs, drinks, popcorn and a bouncy house. Activities and food start at 5:30; movie at dusk.

Date: Oct. 3

Time: Activities and food start at 5:30 p.m. and movie at dusk

Location: Elm Springs city park

More info: Click here

The Haunting on Cherry Street

hauntingThe Haunting on Cherry Street is a free, kid-friendly, high-tech Halloween display. Rather than live actors, the show contains audio, video, and lighting effects. The display is viewed from the sidewalk and street. Visitors do not enter the home. Downtown Rogers. Monday-Thursday, lights only. Friday-Sunday, full effects.

Date: Oct. 1-Nov. 1

Time: Dusk to 10 p.m.

Location: 210 W. Cherry St., Rogers

More info: Click here

The Expelled Haunted House, Sissy Night/Family Night

The Expelled, in Huntsville has two nights, Oct. 1st and Oct 8th, that are for family Halloween fun:

Oct 1st= $8 / Sissy Night (some overhead lights on, as well as all set lets. NO ACTORS) This night would be ideal for anyone wanting to see the haunted house and all of its spooky details, without having to worry about being scared by any actors.

Oct 8th = $10 / Family Night (no overhead lights, all set lights on. Some actors) This night falls somewhere in between Sissy night and our regular season event. There will be some actors, but children (or terrified adults) get to control the scare! Each group will be given a flashlight upon entrance and if the actor is too scary for the child/adult then they’ll shine the flashlight on them, and the actor will cower away (as if they’re afraid of the flashlight). We think this will be a fun way for kids to experience a haunted house, and ensure they don’t miss out on the fun. There will be some graphic material and props (simulated blood/body parts), we do not condone the use of religious or demonic references.

Date: Oct. 1 & 8

Time: Varies

Location: Huntsville Ark.

More info: Click here

great pumpkinHobbs State Park Fall Festival

Date: Oct. 4

Time: 1-4 p.m.

Location: Hobbs State Park, Rogers

More info: Click here

Historic Rogers Ghost Walks

Guests will hear tales of murder, mischief and mayhem during this walking tour in downtown Rogers. Cost: $5. Tickets are available for purchase at the Museum. Please call for more information: 479-621-1154.

NWA, Halloween 2015, Events and ActivitiesDate: Oct. 15-16; Oct. 23-24

Time: 7-9 p.m.

Location: Downtown Rogers

More info: Click here

Haunted Night on the Battlefield

Admission: $2 adults, $1 kids; Meeting Place: Amphitheater. This year’s event will include a self-guided tour of information booths and a historical scene around the Borden House area. You will find stations that focus on different aspects of the history of the battle, folklore and findings we’ve uncovered during our research, and local paranormal investigators’ booths. You can still take a walk around the park trail, if you dare. Free kettle corn and hot cider will be served. Parking is available at the east Borden House entrance. 

Date: Oct. 24

Time: 7-9:45 p.m.

Location: Prairie Grove Battlefield State Park

More info: Click here

Howl-O-Ween Spooktacular @ Turpentine Creek

Halloween can be a hair-raising experience, especially when you throw over 100 big cats into the mix. TCWR’s annual Halloween party is the only time you can view our cats in the dark of night. The main compound is open for the whole family to experience the night habits of our lions, tigers, cougars, bobcats, and more. Games, food, and a children’s costume contest are all part of the one of a kind experience, and provides fun for all ages.*Visitors to the Refuge during the day are allowed free entry to the party in the evening. Visitors must, however, exit the Refuge at 6:00PM, and re-enter with pass at 7:00PM

Date: Oct. 24

Time: 7-9 p.m.

Location: Turpentine Creek Wildlife Refuge, Eureka Springs

More info: Click here

Treats at the Tracks

The 1st Annual Treats at the Tracks Family Carnival will be at the A/M Railroad Springdale Depot. This event will provide a fun, safe place for families to come Trick-or-Treat on the Train, enjoy carnival games and live music, and have lots of fun.  There will also be a haunted train for the older and braver kids. This is a fundraiser for the House of Hope Rescue Mission.

Date: Oct. 30

Time: 6:30-9:30 p.m.

Location: A&M Railroad Depot, Springdale

More info: Click here

Dogpatch Heckuva Halloween

Date: Oct. 23-25

Time: 7-11 p.m.

Location: Dogpatch USA, Marble Falls, Ark.

More info: Click here

Spooktacular Skating Event, The Jones Center ice skating rink

Come have some spooky fun this Halloween at The Jones Center with ice skating, treats and games! Wear your Halloween costume because there will be a costume contest, and the winner will win a one-of-a-kind Halloween gift basket. Only $3 per skater.

spooktacular at the jones centerDate: Saturday, Oct. 31

Time: Noon to 3 p.m.

Location: The Jones Center, Springdale

More info: Click here

Goblin Parade

Date: Oct. 30

Time: 3:30 p.m.

Location: Downtown Rogers

More info: Click here

Stories from the Grave

The Historical Society of Elm Springs will host “Stories from the Grave” at the Elm Springs cemetery on October 30 and 31 (weather permitting). Groups will gather at the cemetery gate at 5:30. Suggested donation of $3.

Date: Oct. 30 & 31

Time: 5:30 p.m.

Location: Elm Springs Cemetery



Visit the Northwest Arkansas Mall for safe Trick-or-Treating on Halloween night! There will also be a free costume contest at Center Court for kids 12 and under. Other activities:

FREE! Meet your favorite characters from Once Upon A Party NWA

FREE! Photographs in your costume, sponsored by Bedford Camera & Video

FREE! Trick-or-treat mall stores for goodies, while supplies last

FREE! Halloween coloring book & crayons for each kid, while supplies last

Date: Oct. 31

Time: 6-8 p.m.

Location: Northwest Arkansas Mall, Fayetteville

More info: Click here


Other October Events/Fall Craft Fairs:

First Thursday Fayetteville

Date: Oct. 1

Time: Starts at 5:30 p.m.

Location: Downtown Fayetteville

More info: Click here

First Friday Bentonville, Oktoberfest

Date: Oct. 2

Location: Downtown Bentonville

More info: Click here

Homegrown Festival, Siloam Springs

Located in historic downtown Siloam Springs, the Homegrown Festival (Saturday, October 3, 10am – 5pm) showcases locally handmade goods, curated vintage, food trucks, and live music. Vendors offer an array of original, one-of-a-kind, and limited-run items including illustration, printmaking, music, jewelry and accessories, handmade goods, salvaged and repurposed goods, and hand-picked vintage.

HomegrownBadge-01-1024x1024Date: Oct. 3

Time: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Location: Downtown Siloam Springs

More info: Click here

Downtown Rogers Oktobeerfest

Date: Oct. 3

Time: 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Location: First and Elm Street, Rogers

More info: Click here

Pumpkin Carving Contest, Exeter Corn Maze

exeter corn mazeThe Exeter Corn Maze has various events scheduled for October, so click  here to see what’s happening this fall.

Date: Oct. 3

Time: 5 p.m.

Location: Exeter Corn Maze, Exeter, Mo.

More info: Click here

The Junk Ranch

Date: Oct. 2-3

Time: Varies

Location: Prairie Grove

More info: Click here

Family Fun Night, Botanical Garden of the Ozarks

Interactive Watershed Table available from Beaver Lake Watershed. Butterfly House tours during the day at 10 a.m. and 1 p.m.. Craft projects with Washington County Environmental Education. Composting and vermicomposting booths. Bug collection from local entomologists. Snacks provided by Apple Seeds and Tri Cycle Farms. Telescopes and star gazers will be available to look at the night sky. Family picnics welcome. There will be several “Fall Finale” days, so click here for other events.

Date: Oct. 6

Time: 5 p.m. until dark

Location: Botanical Garden of the Ozarks

More info: Click here

Mother’s Day Out, Farmland Adventures

farmlandFarmland Adventures will host a Mother’s Day Out event on Oct. 8. Admission will be just $5 per person at this special event. CLICK HERE to read more about the event.

Date: Oct. 8

Time: 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Location: Farmland Adventures, Springdale

More info: Click here

Tinkerfest, Scott Family Amazeum

The Amazeum has a big event planned for this fall: Tinkerfest! This is a day-long event of making and tinkering demonstrations for the whole family. And yes, the car take-a-part will be back this year. Admission to Tinkerfest is included in your daily admission for that day or your membership admission.

Date: Oct. 10

Time: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m

Location: Amazeum, Bentonville

More info: Click here

tinkerfest 2015

Ozark Folk Festival

The country’s longest continuously running folk festival returns for the 68th annual Original Ozark Folk Festival on October 7 through 10 in Eureka Springs.  It will include the Queen’s Contest, Barefoot Ball, Singer/Songwriter Contest, free music, arts and crafts demonstrations, the Folk Festival Parade, and this year’s headline show features two-time Grammy award winner Rita Coolidge. 

Date: Oct. 7-10

Time: Varies

Location: Eureka Springs

More info: Click here

Preschool Playdate, Fall Colors, Crystal Bridges

PrintFREE. Art projects, story time and creative play inspired by fall’s changing colors.

Date: Oct. 8

Time: 11:30-2 p.m.

Location: Crystal Bridges Museum, Bentonville

More info: Click here

Vintage Market Days

Date: Oct. 9-11

Time: Varies

Location: Benton County Fairgrounds

More info: Click here

Spanker Creek Farm Arts, Crafts and More

spanker creekDate: Oct. 14-18

Time: Varies

Location: Benton County

More info: Click here

Ozark Regional Arts and Crafts Festival, 3 locations

Date(s): Oct. 15-17, Washington County Fairgrounds; Oct. 16-17, John Q. Hammons, Rogers, and NWA Convention Center, Springdale

Time: Varies

Location: Varies

More info: Click here

Bella Vista Arts and Crafts Festival

Date: Oct. 15-17

8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Location: Wishing Spring Gallery and 1991 Forest Hills Blvd.

More info: Click here

Goshen Gallop

September is Literacy Month and this year’s Goshen Gallop proceeds will be used to build and stock a Little Free Library and support the Ozark Literacy Council.

Date: Oct. 17

Time: 8 a.m.

Location: Goshen United Methodist Church

More info: Click here

War Eagle Mill Craft & Culinary Fair

Date: Oct 15-18

Time: Varies

Location: War Eagle Mill, Rogers

More info: Click here

 jones center, smallThe Northwest Arkansas Calendar of Events is sponsored by The Jones Center for Families in Springdale. There’s ALWAYS something fun happening at The Jones Center, plus they have all kinds of classes for adults and kids — and great birthday party options at the indoor swimming pool, gymnastics or ice skating rink! CLICK HERE to visit the Jones Center website to see more!

Mercy adds 32 new health care providers

collageOne of the signs of growth in Northwest Arkansas is the number of new doctors and practitioners who show up at the “Mercy Mingle,” an event to welcome the newest health care providers to the Mercy family.

MERCY2We met many of the 32 new providers last week when we attended the Mercy Mingle event at the Pinnacle Country Club on the last official day of summer. (The people wearing blue ribbons pictured above are among the new providers recently added by Mercy.)

Of course, there were plenty of familiar Mercy doctors at the event as well, including several we’ve interviewed here on nwaMotherlode.com like Dr. Larry Weathers, Dr. Lance Weathers, Dr. Adam Maas, Dr. Hugh Donnell, Dr. Chris Johnson and Dr. Susan Demeril. (Click each name to see more info from each of these physicians.)

With the addition of the new members, Mercy now has more than 190 health care providers serving the community throughout Northwest Arkansas.

mercy collage2


Good Gossip: The latest guilt-free celeb gossip

Good Gossip slider 700Yes, we do love a little celebrity gossip but we also know it’s not cool to do something we teach our kids NOT to do. It’s never okay to indulge in stuff meant to humiliate or hurt another person. That’s why we came up with the concept of “Good Gossip,” which is celeb news minus any mean stuff. Have as much as you want and share it with your celeb-loving friends because this “dish” is all guilt-free.

tyra banks fablifeTyra Banks is hoping to join the mom club one day soon. There’s a great profile of the supermodel/talk show host/TV producer/business owner in the latest issue of People magazine. In the article, she says that she’d love to have several kids with her boyfriend, photographer Erik Asla and is looking forward to “getting old with my man.” Tyra said she has been trying IVF to get pregnant and has been through difficult times, relying on her boyfriend for support. (Best wishes for a positive pregnancy test soon.) Tyra’s latest project is a new talk show panel called FabLife. (She’s pictured on the right with the rest of the panel.) And she is also in her 22nd season of producing and hosting America’s Next Top Model.

katharine mcpheeKatharine McPhee, former American Idol contestant and one of the stars of the TV show Scorpion, has a new album out in stores. It’s called Hysteria, and famous friends including Sia and Ryan Tedder helped write some of the songs. Katharine is currently dating her Scorpion costar Elyes Gabel.

bellamy youngBellamy Young plays the First Lady we love to hate on the show Scandal. But get this! She was only supposed to be in three episodes. She said that the show’s creator Shonda Rhimes told her it would only be three episodes but then the writers had so much fun writing her part that it turned into something much bigger and better. Now it’s hard to imagine the show without her!

We read Mindy Kaling‘s first book in 2011 and now we’re itching to get started on her follow-up book called “Why Not Me?” which recently hit bookstores. The book includes some of Mindy’s dating drama as well as funny stories about the juice cleanses that are so popular in Hollywood. If you’d rather watch than read, Mindy’s signature humor is the star of her show on Hulu called “The Mindy Project.” It premiered on September 15th and it is so very fun to watch.

mindy kaling why not me

Source: People magazine, September 28, 2015 issue

Giveaway: Vintage Market Days tickets for 4 mamas!

vintage market days

We know how some of you mamas just love a good vintage find. So how about a whole market full of finds?

Vintage Market Days of Northwest Arkansas is an upscale vintage-inspired indoor/outdoor market featuring original art, antiques, clothing, jewelry, handmade treasures, home décor, outdoor furnishings, consumable yummies, seasonal plantings and a little more. The Market is a three-day event held several times a year in various communities.

We have eight tickets to give away and we’ll choose 4 winners. That way each winner can bring a friend :) These tickets are good for the Early Buying Event on Friday night — and for the whole weekend!

The show is Oct. 9-11 at the Benton County Fairgrounds.

HOW TO ENTER: If you’d like to win tickets for you and a friend, just click on the words “leave a comment” at the bottom of this post and tell us something you’d love to find at Vintage Market Days. That just-right pillow? A unique bedside table? Some one-of-a-kind Christmas gifts? We’d love to hear about it!

You can also email your answer to us at giveaways@nwaMotherlode.com.

INCREASE YOUR ODDS OF WINNING: Help us spread the word about this giveaway by emailing your friends and family about the giveaway. We’ll give you an extra chance to win for every person you tell. Just be sure to put giveaways@nwaMotherlode.com on the CC line of your note so we can give you proper credit.

You can also earn an extra chance to win by signing up to receive the free email newsletter we send once a week.

Our newsletter subscribers get access to the good stuff, including exclusive giveaways (like this one from last week), information about local events, local mom interviews, recipes and more. It’s delivered straight to your inbox so you don’t miss anything awesome. CLICK HERE to sign up. We won’t fill your inbox with info, no worries. We only send out newsletters when there’s something in it for you — and we know you’ll be interested in hearing about it.

BE SOCIAL: You can also earn extra chances to win by commenting on our Facebook page, following us on Twitter or following us on Pinterest. If you do any of those, just mention it in your comment or email so we can give you proper credit.

We’ll choose a winner on Friday afternoon, mamas! Good luck!