Things to Do with Kids
In the North Central Arkansas Ozarks
This is a region where families can enjoy themselves with unlimited outdoor adventures. The biggest draws are the Buffalo National River (where you can fish, float the river, hike, bike, horseback ride and explore the forests, plus discover historic home sites and prehistoric sites all along the river) and peaceful Bull Shoals Lake. Towns offer some indoor recreation, too.
One of the largest towns in the region has several attractions you and the kids will enjoy.
The Lyric Theater Built as a movie house in 1929 for the talkies, now hosts plays and concerts.115 W. Rush St., Harrison. Call 870-391-3504 for schedule.
Carmike Cinema 8 New move releases every week. 617 US 62-65, Harrison. 870-741-6815.
Boone County Heritage Museum Share some Ozarks history with the kids. Particularly meaningful if you have relatives from this region. 24 S. Cherry St, Harrison. 870-741-3312
Fenton Berry Farm Pick your own berries; buy fresh produce directly from the farm. Call first to see what's in season. 5 miles south of Harrison. 7217 Fork Creek Rd S. 870-741-9607
Ozark Emporium A fun place to shop. Ice cream bar, antiques, gifts, more. 4693 U.S. 65 N, Harrison 870-741-1301
Mystic Caverns Only 8 miles south of town, two splendid caverns await your exploration.
Bear Creek Springs Trout Farm You and the kids can fish the trout farm at Devito's Restaurant. No fees or licenses, just pay for your catch. The restaurant will clean and pack them, or cook them up for you. Fishing by appointment only. 350 Devito's Loop, Harrison. 870-741-8832.
Buffalo River Area
Buffalo Outdoor Center Loco! Ropes and Iron Horse Zip Lines.
Buffalo National River Park Less than a mile from Harrison. Hundreds of miles of trails and camping along the beautiful Buffalo River. Fish, canoe, watch the wildlife. There are many stops along the Buffalo that are places of interest:
Lost Valley Hiking Trail in Ponca Safe trail for all ages, with such sights as a tall waterfall, a natural bridge and caves. Scenic views all around.
Ponca Low Water Crossing River access, and access to the elk grazing fields. Old bridges.
Hurricane River Cave and Trail See our caves page.
Collier Homestead Preserved historic homestead circa 1862, set on a high bluff overlooking the river. Owned by the Collier family until 1978, who lived off the grid and without indoor plumbing until 1961. A truly unusual look at a recent pioneer past.
Tyler's Bend Visitor Center Start your Buffalo River explorations here to gather information about the river. Enjoy the displays before heading out. Trailheads and a put-in spot for canoes and rafts, plus a shallow area where you can dunk on a hot day. Near the highway crossing of US 65. Parking and restrooms.
Gilbert General Store This century old store is cool and inviting inside, with lots of snacks and fun things to buy. The town of Gilbert has 33 inhabitants, and you'll probably meet one or two at the store. You can also rent lodging and canoes here.
Visit the National Park website to learn more about vacationing at the Buffalo National River.
Bull Shoals Lake
The tourist town of Bull Shoals offers a less rustic vacation on the water.
Mountain Village Championship Miniature Golf - Challenging and lighted for night play. 1011 C. S. Woods Blvd, Bull Shoals.
Bull Shoals Caverns will delight young and old cavers alike. Click here for more info.
Bull Shoals White River State Park Play with the kids in the water, at the playgrounds, or hiking the trails. Boat, motor and canoe rentals available at the trout dock.
The James A. Gaston Visitor Center at 153 Dam Overlook Lane in Bull Shoals, is an environmental education and learning center, with exhibits about the river, dam, lake and their histories.
North Central Arkansas Speedway. If you and the kids love to watch stock racing on a three-eighths mile oval track, this is for you. Kids' activities are scheduled; open Fridays late March to mid-October.