The Friday 5: Fun things to do this weekend in Northwest Arkansas, July 15-17

Friday 5

jurassic quest1. Jurassic Quest, Friday-Sunday, Benton County Fairgrounds {Tickets required} Look for an exhibit that walks you through the Triassic, Jurassic, and Cretaceous periods, NEW walking dinosaur rides, fossil digs, dinosaur rides, dinosaur cinema, science station, dinosaur bounce houses and more. Over 30 dinosaurs have been added for a total of 80. There are also 4 NEW and even LARGER dinosaur rides. There will also be huge, life-size, animatronic Dinosaurs (and baby ones too). Don’t forget socks! (Required for inflatables).

Click here to buy tickets to Jurassic Quest and for more info.

2. Create-it-Con, Saturday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. {Free} Create-it-Con at the Rogers Public Library is a celebration of the Maker Movement. It’s a family-friendly showcase of invention, creativity, and resourcefulness. Create it Con gathers together tech enthusiasts, crafters, educators, tinkerers, food artisans, hobbyists, engineers, musicians, actors, science clubs, artists, students, cosplayers, food trucks and lots of other exhibitors. Admission is always free so come and play all day.

The event is from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday at the Rogers Public Library.

Click here for more info on Create-it-Con!

wild goose chase3. Matt Sandbank’s Shadow Factory, Saturday, 10:30 a.m. {Free} In A Wild Goose Chase!, Matt takes the audience to a world filled with dancing pants, guitar rockin’ grandmothers, mischievous spaceships, and many more whimsical images.

Poetry springs hilariously to life as soon as Matt’s handmade, expressive shadow puppets hit the screen. This 45-minute program includes a series of interactive vignettes and verses designed to illustrate several key literary ideas (rhythm, rhyme, imagery, narrative, lyric, moral, etc.) to elementary audiences. A Wild Goose Chase! is sure to excite your young people about poetry and puppetry, helping them to discover and express their own creative voices.

Click here for more info on the Shadow Factory show!

4. Read Across NWA, Saturday, all day {Free} The Ozark Literacy Council has a fun day planned with help from various local businesses and libraries. There’s so much going on, it’s hard to get it all in. Click here to read all about the events, which start Saturday morning and go until dark.

The idea is to walk, bike, ride and read!

Click here for a full list of Read Across NWA day!

read across nwa

5. Firefly Fling, Saturday, 6-10 p.m. {ticket prices below} The Botanical Garden of the Ozarks will become an exciting land of imagination as Firefly Fling descends upon the gardens on Saturday. This annual event features nature and play activities for adults and children. Before dark, community groups will offer engaging and fun activities like fairy house building, face painting, photo booth, obstacle course, giant bubbles, nature stations, crafts, maze, and more!

firefly flingThis year’s host will be MC McNbdy. Throughout the evening, the gardens will be filled with musicians and storytellers. Shaky Bugs, Papa Rap and the all new Firefly Fling Faire band will be the main stage entertainment. Studio Leilani will be presenting two marionette student performances. After dark, families may participate in glowing games and then gather on the lawn for glow-in-the-dark performances; fire dancing from Violetta Lotus Fireflies and a special Community Wishes finale. (Floating lanterns are now illegal but BGO has has a special surprise in store for the finale.)

Guests may bring blankets and picnics but food trucks will be available. The Firefly Shoppe will have more fairy wings, wands, glow sticks, and other festival items for sale than ever before. Bring a little cash so that you build a fairy costume and even decorate your own fairy wings. This year there will be two gates, one at each end of the garden.

At the gate admission will be $10/adults, $5/children 3 to 13yrs of age, and children under 3 are free. Tickets may also be purchased in advance online (click here) for $8/adults and $4/children.

Click here for more info on Firefly Fling!

Bonus events!

woodpecker6. A Bird’s Buffet, Sunday, 2:30-3 p.m. {Free} This free event is at Devil’s Den State Park.

Which bird eats what? Join Park Interpreter Mystina to play a fun activity while discovering how different birds use their specialized beaks to eat certain foods.

Meeting Place: Pool Area

Click here for more info on the bird event!

7. Hunt for Pokemon! We’ve got a great list HERE of where to find Pokemon in Northwest Arkansas plus a fun “Poke-Mom” cheat sheet with a vocabulary so you can learn Poke-speak.

Level up with this list!

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