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Winter ends Monday, March 20, 2023, but Arkansas adventures never do. Even during the shorter days and colder weather, The Natural State still offers plenty to experience. Here are six ways to see, do and taste a bit of Arkansas this winter:
The winter months offer a great opportunity to stay indoors and enjoy a warm drink. The Arkansas Coffee Trail is a map of locally owned or locally operated coffee shops in districts registered with Main Street Arkansas. The Coffee Trail features coffee shops in every part of Arkansas, so it’s a great starting point for getting out and about this winter. Choose a spot on the map to visit, like The Ouachitas in Mena, Bean Me Up drive-thru in Eureka Springs, Indigo Blue Coffeehouse in Pine Bluff, or The Caffeinated Cow in Rector. If you’re more into tea, check out The Tea Create in Batesville.
Experience Arkansas from the comfort of your home. Authors like John Grisham and Jenny B. Jones have Arkansas connections. More writers from The Natural State offer plenty of choices for reading this including selections of fiction, nonfiction, young adult and children’s books. The list includes Janis F. Kearney, Becky Williams, Eli Cranor, Misti Kenison, Jane Elzey, Matt McGowen and Letia Wyatt.
Deer hunters, brides-to-be and music fans will all find something fun to do in Arkansas this winter. Be sure to check the list for performances and indoor events. In addition, the Fort Smith Regional Art Museum will kick off its 75th-anniversary celebration with events throughout the year.
Hemstead Hall in Hope is showing “Fairytales on Ice,” and the Central Arkansas Library System has a calendar full of movie times. Murphy Arts District in El Dorado will host a Mardi Gras Rumble and performance by country music singer and songwriter Ashley McBryde.
For those who prefer to spend time outdoors, winter gardening offers a productive option. There are several prep tasks to get ready for spring gardens. Winter flowers and vegetables like kale and Swiss chard can also be planted this time of year.
Winter gardening is really a two-for-one activity because winter gardens bring winter birds. Another bird-related activity is eagle-watching. While January is the Eagle Awareness Month, there are opportunities for seeing eagles and other birds all year. If you’re up for a birding day trip, now might be the time to visit Magness Lake just outside Heber Springs and see trumpeter swans.
Several locations in the state make good destinations to help your kids burn some of that wintertime energy. Check out this list for family-friendly winter hiking in central Arkansas. Don’t forget to take a look at this list of tips for hiking with kids. Geocaching, going on scavenger hunts and making movies are also some kid-friendly activities. And just for the grandparents, Arkansas has beautiful ways to make memories with grandchildren.
Since the winter season gives us reasons to celebrate, like the Super Bowl and Valentine’s Day, it’s a perfect time to try new recipes for drinks and appetizers. Some fun ideas:
— Mix some drinks. Mocktails are trending right now, and there’s something for everyone. Two fruit-based options are a raspberry mojito mocktail and a gummy worm punch. Other ideas to bring you into the spring mood include recipes for a cappuccino punch and a wedding punch.
— Make some meatballs.
— Cook some cinnamon pecans.
— Nosh on these game-day pizza twists.
— Get your kids involved and put together some trail mix.
— Make use of wild turkey, deer or duck with this recipe for shish kebabs.
— Create your own Arkansas charcuterie board.
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