With gas prices soaring all across the area, it seems that something is going to have to give. However, family entertainment should not have to be one of them. There is a number of activities that families can do together and not break the bank.
Storytime – There is four branches, including the Main branch, of the Fort Smith Public Library. Each branch has a story time every week (the Main library has two different story times. There is one of toddlers and younger children and one for older toddlers). In addition to story times, select branches have movie nights as well. All of these activities are completely free! For more information and to find a branch near you visit http://www.fortsmithlibrary.org/branches.html or call the Main branch at 479-783-0229.
Janet Huckabee Arkansas River Valley Nature Center – This center sits on 170 acres overlooking Wells Lake, close to Fort Chaffee. While at the nature center, families can enjoy learning about the plants and wildlife that is native to the area. Younger children would enjoy seeing the different fish and animals being fed which takes place at 2 PM daily (Friday is the day they feed the snakes!! A day I would skip for sure! There is many upcoming events so be sure to check out the website – http://www.rivervalleynaturecenter.com. All activities and events held at the nature center are free.
The Park at West End – This fun historic park located at the end of Garrison Avenue. The park features a genuine 1930’s Ferris Wheel, an Italian hand-painted carousel, a double decker bus that doubles as an arcade and concession as well as an old Pullman dining car for eating. Admission to the park is free, however, rides on the Ferris wheel and carousel are $1 each.
Fort Smith Museum of History – There is so much to see at the Fort Smith Museum of History and one of the best parts is that you learn about the wonderful town that we live in as well!! There are numerous different exhibits that all display something from Fort Smith’s history. One of my personal favorite exhibits is the Darby Room which is a World War II exhibit about “Darby’s Rangers”. (Founder William O. Darby is from Fort Smith, Arkansas). The small cost for admittance is $5 for adults 16 and over, $2 for children 6-15, and children under 6 are free. To see a list of the exhibits and to learn about any attractions taking place, visit http://www.fortsmithmuseum.com.
Hopefully the above places give you an idea for a family outing without breaking the bank!