Family activities to enjoy this fall

by Katelin Whiddon

We live in what has to be one of the most beautiful states in our country. Fall is one of the most stunning seasons Arkansas has to offer. I find the good and the bad of each season, but by the time summer is coming to an end, I’m ready for cooler temperatures and fall foliage. I love seeing pumpkins and hay decorate our town and watching the leaves change to warm, fall tones. Fall allows us to get outdoors and see what all there is to see in our great state.

Central Arkansas is blessed with so many great places to spend the day outdoors. Hiking is a fun family activity that can be done in one day and be back home in time for dinner. It’s a fun way to get your kids out of the house and introduce them to nature. Each time you get outdoors, we can show our children new trees, animals, bugs and so much more. Technology is put away, and we can truly enjoy each other and quality time.

Within a short drive, you could hike at Pinnacle Mountain, Petit Jean, Mount Nebo or Sugar Loaf. Each of these beautiful areas has numerous trails that can keep you coming back for more and start a new adventure and new memories every time.

At various times of the year, these parks will host organized family activities and festivals, which bring another new element to the table for these outdoor adventures. You can do arts and crafts, tomahawk throwing competitions, horseback riding, car shows and so much more. Scavenger hunts are also a fun way to have your children pay more attention to nature. Make a list of different things they can find outdoors and see how many items they can cross off the list. The ideas are unlimited for all you can do with your families in a day’s trip.

The fall is also a great time for family walks, bike rides, etc. Go on a nature walk around your neighborhood or walking trails and let your children collect leaves. They can make a fall collage by gluing different types of leaves on construction paper. Pumpkin patches can be fun this time of year, as well. Many pumpkin patches have hayrides and arts and crafts, and some even have corn mazes. It is a family tradition that we go each year, and the kids get to pick out their own pumpkins to paint/carve and then more to sit out as decorations.

You don’t have to travel far or get very creative because children just appreciate the time spent with them. Don’t stress over being Pinterest-perfect, just enjoy the time with your family. Quality time is where memories are made.


A Conway native, Katelin Whiddon is a nurse practitioner at the Conway wound clinic for Arkansas Heart Hospital. She and her husband, Daniel, have two daughters. A University of Central Arkansas graduate, she has her bachelor’s and master’s degrees and works in pediatrics.