Fall into Fun at Nebraska State Parks
Whether you like to learn, relax, make family memories or meet new friends, Nebraska's state parks are the place to be for fun this fall. Here's a look at some upcoming events; details can be found on our event calendar.
STARGAZING - MAHONEY STATE PARK
Eugene T. Mahoney State Park is hosting the Stargazing 2013 party on September 13. Join the Omaha Astronomical Society and Prairie Astronomy club and view the spectacular sky using the powerful telescopes! Stargazing begins at the Bur Oak Picnic Shelter across from the golf driving range from dusk to 11 pm. Weather Permitting.
MOONSHELL STORYTELLING FESTIVAL - MAHONEY STATE PARK
Nebraska Story Arts is producing the 11th Annual Moonshell Storytelling Festival, at Eugene T. Mahoney State Park. Events include storytelling for families and adults from 10:30 a.m. - 9:30 p.m. The Festival is Free with admission to the park. The location is at Mahoney State Park's Open Air Pavilion and the Peter Kiewit Lodge Lower Level Conference Area.
NIGHT OWL 5K RUN - NIOBRARA STATE PARK
Come out and enjoy the park on a 5K night run. Participants must register at the park. Contact the park office for more details.
FEATHERED FRIENDS - WILDCAT HILLS NATURE CENTER
Uncover the birds around Wildcat Hills. We will learn about research being done in the area, common migratory birds and even take a short hike. Bring hiking shoes, water bottle and be prepared to take flight. Contact the nature center for more information.
MISSOURI RIVER OUTDOOR EXPO - PONCA STATE PARK
The Expo is an annual event to give the public a chance to learn about wildlife-related & outdoor recreation activities, including wildlife viewing, fishing, hunting, archery, shooting sports, camping, off-highway vehicle recreation & boating recreation. Over 80 hands-on exhibits, demonstrations and vendors make for a fun and educational weekend.
APPLEJACK FESTIVAL - ARBOR LODGE, NEBRASKA CITY
Come join us at Arbor Lodge for the annual AppleJack Festival. The art show is a celebration of art featuring artists from Nebraska, Iowa and South Dakota. The event is held both days from 10am-5pm.
OUTDOOR FAMILY ADVENTURE CAMP - CAMP KATERI
This is a family oriented program focused on learning basic skills to help you and your family enjoy the outdoors. A variety of skills are available to learn and expert instructors will be teaching the classes. Registration is required.
2ND ANNUAL CHAIN CHALLENGE DISCO GOLF - MAHONEY STATE PARK
In conjunction with the "Fall Flyover", the park will be hosting the "Chain Challenge" Disc Golf Tourney. This will be two rounds of 18 holes, with shirts provided and a cash prize for Pro Div. Check in is at 8:30am. Register online here. Contact the park office for more information.
4TH ANNUAL HOMEMADE LIVING DAY - PONCA STATE PARK
Formerly known as Heritage Farm Weekend, this event focuses on "passing-on" many of the traditional skills and techniques of a small family farm or acreage. Demonstrations include canning & preserving, bee keeping, organic & heirloom gardening, fiber arts, quilting, home-style foods, flour milling and more. Think homemade and homegrown-from farm to table- we're celebrating it. Horse drawn wagon rides and pioneer games too.
LIVING HISTORY WEEKEND - FORT ATKINSON STATE HISTORICAL PARK
Experience life in an 1820's military fort as depicted by interpretation actors. Each weekend depicts a different theme so check the schedule for what interests you most! Interpretation hours are from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. For further information, contact the park office.
AUTUMN HARVEST ART SHOW - MAHONEY STATE PARK
Looking for original artwork that may not be found anywhere else? Then visit the Peter Kiewit Lodge at Mahoney State Park for the Autumn Harvest Art Show hosted by Prairie Images. There are artists offering something that will please every interest: wildlife, southwestern, wood sculptures, pottery and more.
Saturday hours are 9am-8pm; Sunday will be 9am-4pm.
October 12, 19
HALLOWFEST - PONCA STATE PARK
The park's 15th annual Halloween and autumn event that features haunted evening hayrack rides, pumpkin rolling and carving contest, campsite decorating contest, and much more. Haunted hayrack ride reservations begin October 7th by calling or visiting the park office.
October 11-12, 18-19, & 25-26
HAUNTED HOLLOW HAYRACK RIDES - INDIAN CAVE STATE PARK
Want to be "spooked" out for fall? Then bring the family to the park for a Haunted Hollow hayrack ride. Cost is $7 per adult and $5 for children (age 4-12), age 3 & under are free. Concessions are available on grounds. Tickets go on sale beginning Oct. 3 by phone or walk-in.
October 12-13 & 26-27
HALLOWEEN DECORATING CONTEST - INDIAN CAVE STATE PARK
Indian Cave will be hosting a Halloween decorating contest in the RV Campground for the weekends of Oct. 12th, 19th and 26th. Winners posted Sunday morning at entrance booth.
FAMILY RENEZVOUS AND BUFFALO FUN RUN - PLATTE RIVER STATE PARK
A free open house venue featuring primitive shooting skills at the Outdoor Heritage Education Complex. Activities include hatchet throwing, atlatl throwing, archery, muzzleloading and free samples of dutch oven cooking. Vistors can sight in their muzzleloaders for $5. A Buffalo stew meall will also be availble for $5.
Buffalo Run: 5K for adults and 1 mile challenge run for kids. There will be 3 challenge stations for adults and 1 challenge station kids. $20 for registration includes a participation t-shirt, buffalo stew, and cornbread. Pre-registration is required.
HOWL IN THE HILLS NIGHT HIKE - WILDCAT HILLS NATURE CENTER
Experience the Wildcat Hills like never before, at night. Discover all the creatures that go bump in the night during our hike. It is sure to be a "howling" good time. Please bring along a flashlight, hiking shoes and a sense of adventure. Please pre-register by Oct. 18 for this event.
CANDLELIGHT TOUR - FORT ATKINSON STATE HISTORICAL PARK
A candlelight tour of the fort grounds will be held in the evening. Reservations are required for this event. Please contact the park office for more information
19TH ANNUAL FORT ROBINSON HISTORICAL CHRISTMAS DINNER
*** Ticket pre-sale begins ***
The Fort Robinson Annual Historical Christmas Dinner tickets go on sale today beginning at 8 am MT time. Do not wait. These tickets sell fast. Call Fort Robinson State Park for your tickets beginning at 8 am MT. This year's Historical Christmas Dinner is being held on December 7, 2013. No tickets will be sold at the door.
November 29 - February 28
PONCA WINTERFEST - PONCA STATE PARK
Remember those old family traditions of apple cider, cookies, a crackling fire and music during the holidays? Come and enjoy those traditions again at Ponca State Park! Crafts and activities will be offered; a kindling hunt will be held for kids. The Yule Log Hunt & bonfire will be held where participants can gather in teams to hunt for the infamous yule log. Holiday hayrack rides will take families around the park. Entertainment will go from 5-8pm in the evening to conclude the day's activities. Nominal fees may apply for the crafts and meals.
Nobember 29 - December 1
CORNUCOPIA OF CRAFTS - MAHONEY STATE PARK
Join us at the Kiewit Lodge for a pre-holiday craft show. There will be vendors with jewelry, jerky, pottery, taxidermy and more.
Please note: A Nebraska Park entry permit is needed for events held in Nebraska State Parks.