Category Archives: Arkansas

Bill & Alice Nix Petting Zoo at ASU

Our local homeschool group was recently invited to attend the Bill & Alice Nix Petting Zoo at the ASU Farm. It had been a few years since I and my oldest two sons had visited the petting zoo, so I was excited to take them back and take their sisters for the first time. We were not disappointed. 🙂
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The Bill & Alice Nix Petting Zoo has been located in the old beef barn on the Arkansas State University Campus in Jonesboro, Arkansas since 2006. It is free and open twice each year – once in the Spring and once in the Fall. Group tours are done during the week, and Saturday it is open to the public. (That’s also a good time to check out the ASU Regional Farmers’ Market.)

We love field trips! (What homeschool family doesn’t?) This field trip was extra fun because it fell on a day my husband was already scheduled to be off work, so Daddy got to tag along for the fun.

First we headed into the barn to visit with the animals. Some of the animals are contained in gated barn stalls, and others, like the funny pot-bellied pig, wander around freely, plopping down here and there for a head scratch.

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The petting zoo is home to an array of farm animals – sheep, goats, pigs, cows, and even an alpaca! Students from Arkansas State were stationed throughout the barn to assist with holding some of the animals, answer questions, and help ease the fears of some of the younger children. (Obviously there were no fears from my crew though. lol)

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The kids also got the chance to hold chicks and visit up close with a lamb and a rabbit. The fluffy bunny and the little chirping chicks were the favorites of my girls. My boys were more fond of the big steer.

After everyone had a chance to hold a chick and pet all the other animals, our group loaded up into a trailer for a hay ride around the farm. We were accompanied on the hay ride by a few of the university students to tell us about the ASU Farm. While it is a teaching facility, it is also a working farm, raising livestock for meats, wool, and growing hay. They explained what went on in each building we passed and told us some facts about the other livestock we saw on the farm. They did a great job of involving the kids and asking and answering questions.

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After the hayride, several families walked across the street to play and visit in the ASU Display Garden of the Craighead County Master Gardeners. I wish now I had taken photos there. It is a beautiful garden with plenty of open space for the kids to run and play and a picnic area too.

If you would like more information about the farm, upcoming petting zoo dates, or to schedule a time for your group to attend the Bill & Alice Nix Petting Zoo:

Arkansas State College of Agriculture & Technology Website

PettingZoo@astate.edu
870.972.2087

 

 

 

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Filed under Arkansas, entertainment, Experience Review, field trip, homeschooling, out and about, Reviews, travel

From the Shop Creations {a small business I love}

From time to time I like to feature small businesses here on my blog. I think it’s important for us to support our local and small business, and it’s fun to see all the neat products and services that are available.

This week, I’m telling you about…

business logo of from the shop creations

From The Shop Creations, owned and operated by my awesome friend Meagan and her husband Derek, was created out of their desire to provide real life experience of business and the arts and skills of a trade to their children.  Each item they sell is handmade by Derek and Meagan at their home in Jonesboro, AR. They’ve created everything from unique wooden coatracks to bookshelves to custom pallet wall art! So go check out the great stuff in their shop. Have something even more unique in mind? They love custom orders too! You can also find them on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. 🙂

(I received no compensation of any kind for this promotion. I just like to share local and small businesses with my readers. 🙂 Happy shopping!)

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Filed under Arkansas, Shopping, Small Business

Snowball (part 2)

Saturday morning we decided to take a walk to see the other buildings on the property. Across the road from our house, was a barn and two restored log cabins from the 1870’s. They also rent the cabins.


Steven, on the porch of the first cabin



hanging out in the old barn…


the barn Mr. Scarecrow


a sign that hangs on the outside of the barn

After our short walk, we decided to take a drive to do a bit more exploring. We discovered the dead ends of a couple of gravel roads, at which people were actually living…and people think WE live in the boondocks? I’m pretty sure our house is nothing compared to the end of a gravel road, on a mountain, outside of Snowball, Arkansas!

After enjoying the scenery for a while, we headed into Marshall to grab some groceries for dinner that night. We also stopped for lunch…at a Mexican restaurant. Imagine that? :o)

That afternoon, we went for another walk. This one was quite a bit longer than the first! We decided to go up the trail, past the first cabin and the barn. We found a hiking trail off to the side and followed it up into the woods. There, we came across this cool old house!

We also saw an elk track! I think that was Steven’s favorite part of the entire trip!

That walk/hike ended with me being exhausted! Steven took a picture of me resting on a big rock before we headed back, but I’ll spare you! It’s kind of scary! haha
I’m not sure exactly how far we hiked, but it was at least 3 or 4 miles, most of it up hill. Oh, and did I mention my husband isn’t one of these always-stay-on-the-path hikers? Well, he’s not. This resulted in me getting whacked in the face/arm/leg with a branch or two, almost stepping in horse poo, almost slipping on my rear while climbing over rocks, etc. It was definitely an interesting “walk”! When we got back to the house, my sweet husband suggested we go for another drive, so that we could enjoy some scenery and I could sit down for a while. 🙂

This time we discovered the end of another gravel road…and a SCHOOL BUS tow truck! Oh yeah, now that’s custom!

When we returned to the house from our second drive, I set to work in the kitchen to bake Steven a belated birthday cake. (Note to self: next year call Courtney!) While the cake tasted fine, it certainly wasn’t our beloved Courtney Cake.

Steven enjoyed a massive piece of the cake…

After our mini birthday celebration, we headed into Marshall to see a movie…

at the drive-in! We saw Four Christmases, which was cute. Marshall has the only drive-in movie in Arkansas that is open all year.

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Filed under Arkansas, travel