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Little Rock Family Blog

Events, activities, news, insight and opinion from the trenches of parenthood by Little Rock Family Magazine Editor Heather Bennett and her editorial staff. Share tips, news and feedback with Heather here.
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Knowing What - and When - to Feed Your Baby at Meal Time

When to introduce bottles, how to choose the right formula, when baby is ready for solid food—these are some of the questions new mothers have when it comes to what, and when, to feed their little one. Fortunately, knowing what to feed your baby and when to introduce new things doesn’t have to be so complicated.

“It can be confusing, especially for new moms, to know exactly what to feed their baby,” says Shannon Hendrix, director of Clinical Nutrition at Arkansas Children’s Hospital. “There are some simple guidelines to follow to make sure your baby is getting proper nutrition that can be helpful in alleviating some of that stress.”

We’ve all heard by now “breast is best.” In fact, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends breastfeeding as the sole source of nutrition for babies for about six months. The AAP further recommends that moms continue to breastfeed until your child is 12 months old, even after adding solids to your baby’s diet.

Sometimes breastfeeding isn’t possible, and in those instances, formula is the best substitute. Formula brands nowadays offer several of the beneficial nutrients found in breast milk and are easy to prepare: Simply mix powder or liquid with water and shake, or pour pre-made formula in a bottle and you’re done.

The transition to introducing solid foods can be more challenging, as you want to make sure your baby is ready for this next step on her nutritional journey. So, how do you know if your little one is ready to venture into the world of solid foods? Here are some signs to look for:

  • Baby holds his/her head up consistently for long periods of time
  • Sits up without assistance
  • Birth weight has doubled and baby weighs at least 13 pounds
  • Exhibits increased interest in watching parents eat, and may even move mouth and make biting motions

The first solid to introduce is generally baby cereal, which comes in powder form. It is mixed with breast milk or formula, and is usually integrated into a baby’s diet between four and six months of age. “Keep in mind, introducing solids, including cereal, shouldn’t take away from or decrease breast milk or formula feedings,” says Hendrix.

The fun starts between six and nine months, when your baby can add a greater selection of solid foods. In addition to baby cereal, you can start out with unsweetened dry cereals, fresh or cooked mashed bananas and vegetables (squash, peas, carrots, green beans), and chopped and jarred meats or poultry cooked plainly without seasonings. “Introduce new foods one at a time and wait at least three to four days before adding a new food to your baby’s diet; this helps identify any potential allergies or sensitivity to particular foods,” says Hendrix.

During the nine- to twelve-month stage of your baby’s development, you begin to add in foods such as crackers, breads, muffins, rice, noodles, peeled and soft fruits like pears and peaches (bite-sized pieces with no seeds), well-cooked and bite-sized portions of meats (including poultry and fish), cooked beans, yogurt and cottage cheese. “You don’t want to introduce regular cow’s milk until your child reaches one year of age. When they’re ready for milk, make sure it’s whole milk and not skim or low-fat,” says Hendrix. Hendrix also notes that it’s important to use adjusted age when dealing with a baby who was born prematurely.

While it’s important to know what you should be feeding your baby at particular milestones in their development, it is vital to know how to safely feed your baby to prevent accidents. Below are some safety tips to consider:

  • Bottles are for breast milk or formula only. Never add infant cereal, sugar, corn syrup, solids, or extra water to a baby’s bottle.
  • Do not heat bottles in the microwave, as heating may be uneven and burn a baby’s mouth.
  • Discard breast milk or formula left in a bottle after feeding.
  • Do not spoon food directly from the jar unless the entire jar is to be used. Refrigerate leftovers and do not keep for longer than 24 hours.
  • Do not offer foods that may cause a child to choke; examples include hot dogs or meat sticks, raw vegetables, whole grapes, berries, nuts, popcorn, hard candy and peanut butter.

More information, including a feeding guide for baby’s first year, can be found via the free MyACH iPhone app in the “Health Library” section. Visit the App Store and search “MyACH” or “Arkansas Children’s Hospital” to download the app and have the resources of ACH right at your fingertips.

Welcome to the New LittleRockFamily.com

Image by Shutterstock

You may notice some changes around LittleRockFamily.com! We've overhauled our website and given it a brand-new look -- and a few new features, too. Even with all of the changes, we're still your destination for local family news, and we strive to provide central Arkansas families with everything from parenting pointers to ideas for family fun.

Take a look around the new site, and you'll find some of the same popular features, like our Things to Do pages, which highlight the latest in family-friendly entertainment, food and more. Our Special Family section is back and better than ever, with more updated content and stories for families and children with special needs.

We're still proud to present our online calendar, too, which is chock-full of upcoming events in central Arkansas. We've made it even easier to find events by day and category. If the weather is beautiful outside, families can now search for outdoor events this weekend. Need a Parents Night Out? You can find those adult-only events, too. On a budget? Look up free events for the week! We hope your search for family fun just got even easier.

If you're looking for information on Birthday Parties, Summer Camps, Education and more, be sure to check out our all-new Guides pages. Also new: our City Guides are a great resource for new central Arkansas residents or those who need a little inspiration the next time the kids cry "I'm bored!"

In conjunction with the site launch, the free Little Rock Family e-news will also sport a new look, starting today (April 15). E-news subscribers receive emails each Tuesday and Thursday. To sign up for Little Rock Family's free e-news, click here.

Have a question or comment about the new LittleRockFamily.com? We want to hear from you! Please email BNeel@abpg.com and let us know what you think.

Foodie Families: Purple Cow, Newk's Eatery and Boulevard Bread Updates

Image by Stephanie Dunn
The Purple Cow is now open in Conway!

From food trucks to farmer's markets, we're always on the the hunt for good eats in central Arkansas. In our new blog series, Foodie Families, we'll share the latest news about Little Rock's family-friendly restaurant scene. Here are a few tasty morsels we've heard about lately:

Conway families can now satisfy their cravings for purple shakes -- on April 2, The Purple Cow opened its doors in the Village at Hendrix. The Conway location will feature the same modern diner decor as other locations in Little Rock and Hot Springs, but it is the first to sport concrete floors stained with purple and black "cow spots." Read the Log Cabin Democrat's full report here.

Gourmet salads, sandwiches and pizzas are on the menu at the newest Newk's Eatery, which opened April 14 in midtown Little Rock. The casual restaurant offers dine-in, as well as carry-out options for both lunch and dinner. Visit the eatery in the Park Avenue development across from Target on University Ave. Read Little Rock Soiree's full report here.

Blue Cake Company is now up-and-running in their new location, conveniently located across from Steinmart on Cantrell Road. Check out their Facebook page for more info about their new digs, and for daily deals and featured treats. 

Boulevard Bread Co. is undergoing lots of changes! The Main Street location announced they will now be open on Sundays in conjunction with the Bernice Gardens Farmers Market. Plus, the Heights location will be expanding into the former New Traditions store, adding space for 50-75 more people in the dining room. The dinner menu will get an update and expansion as well, with appetizers, cocktails, happy hour snacks and desserts. Read Little Rock Soiree's full report here.

Mylo Coffee Co. is Hillcrest's newest purveyor of caffeine. But it's also got tons of sweet treats that families will love. Plus, you can pick up a Loblolly Creamery handmade soda, including tasty lavendar lemonade. Get daily updates on menu items at Mylo Coffee Co.'s Facebook page. Read Little Rock Soiree's full report here. 

Pizzeria Santa Lucia, one of our favorite roaming pizza ovens, announced on its Facebook page that a brick-and-mortar location is in the works. According to the post, the remodel inside Terry's Finer Foods began on April 14. Check out their Facebook page for more updates.


And don't forget: The Farmers Markets are all opening up for the spring and summer growing season. See our full list here!

Locking Down Prescription Drug Abuse by Tweens/Teens

Lockmed’s Vanguard home medication Lock Box is designed for the average family. It provides a central place to store prescription drugs and enough security features to safeguard medications. Go to lockmed.com for more information.

We’ve all heard the horror stories of parents who have had to deal with a child struggling with addiction, stealing to support a habit, or perhaps worse, dying from an accidental overdose or drug-induced suicide.

But the drug epidemic of this generation is not heroin, cocaine, or methamphetamine. It is prescription medications. This epidemic is senseless, tragic and preventable.

Today, throughout our state 2,500 kids between 12 and 17 experimented with prescription pain killers for the first time. Tomorrow another 2,500 will do the same thing. To put that in perspective, that’s 44 school buses full of kids, every day.

Today, in our state there was at least one death from a prescription drug overdose. There will continue to be one death each day from a similar overdose.

In 1999, over 16,000 people died of prescription drug overdoses. In 2009, it was over 37,000—a 131 percent increase.

By the time our kids reach their senior year of high school, one in five of them will have abused prescription medications; and over 40 percent of those will have obtained the medications from their family medicine cabinet, not from a drug dealer, not from a friend—from Mom and Dad, Grandma or Grandpa, or some other family member.

Do you know if your medications are stored in a responsible location?

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The statistics are staggering; it’s overwhelming to think that our life-saving and -sustaining drugs are being abused in such a way. Prescription drug abuse truly is a complex problem, and there is no silver bullet to solve it.

But in Arkansas, we are taking action to address the issue of prescription drug abuse.

State Drug Czar Fran Flener, who works tirelessly to educate about this epidemic, with Attorney General Dustin McDaniel and the Arkansas State Police, have launched the “Monitor, Secure, Dispose” campaign. Its purpose is to educate Arkansans that they have a duty to guard their medications, to make sure they don’t share their medications, and to properly dispose of them once they are done with their treatment.

In Benton, Chief Kirk Lane got tired of going on police calls that involved teenagers overdosing on prescription medications. So he started the first prescription “take back box” to allow citizens of Saline County to return their unwanted or unused medications. This has led to numerous Prescription Drug Take Back Events across the entire state. To date, over 32 tons of prescription drugs have been returned at these events.

Local civic organizations such as Rotary Clubs have recognized the epidemic and have piggy-backed on efforts by the state and the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) to give take back efforts a wider reach. Rotary Club 99 in downtown Little Rock has recently donated money to purchase additional permanent drug take-back boxes throughout the state.

Several years ago, after seeing problems begin to develop in other states, our legislature passed a law that banned the Internet prescribing of controlled substances for patients in Arkansas in the absence of a valid “Physician-patient” relationship. In 2011, the Arkansas General Assembly passed the Prescription Drug Monitoring Program (PDMP), a data repository of all controlled substances that are dispensed in Arkansas. This program has been active since May 2013 and provides a useful tool to prescribers and dispensers to determine if a patient is seeking controlled substances from multiple prescribers and multiple pharmacies.

The PDMP is voluntary; by October 2013, 1185 physicians and 1350 pharmacists had signed up to use the database. From September 2012 to August 2013, over 7 million controlled substance prescriptions were dispensed, just in Arkansas.

While these efforts have been successful, we have to continue to have a multi-faceted approach to solve this problem. We must continue to:

  • Educate ourselves and our communities.
  • Protect our medications at home.
  • Dispose of unwanted or unneeded medications during Drug Take-Days in April and October 2014.
  • Encourage responsible prescribing and dispensing of prescription medications.
  • And, encourage prosecutors to aggressively prosecute pharmacy robberies and burglaries that intend to dump thousands of doses of drugs onto our streets.
  • And finally, we also need to realize for some of these abusers, it is an addiction. We must help those struggling to overcome prescription pain killer addictions.

_________________________________

Scott Pace, Pharm.D., J.D. is Chief Operating Officer of the Arkansas Pharmacists Association and co-owner of Kavanaugh Pharmacy in Little Rock with his wife Anne, also a pharmacist. They have a daughter, age three, and a son, age two.

Little Rock Family's 2014 Guide to Summer Camps & Classes

Don't panic! Keep your cool this summer with help from Little Rock Family's ultimate guide to summer camps and classes in central Arkansas.

In our April 2014 issue, we compiled a list of over 100 summer camps and classes -- including everything from sports training and music academies to traditional overnight camps and well-rounded day camps.

To help make your summer scheduling a breeze, the list is organized by date and then category. Browse the full list in our digital edition here.

We even asked our Facebook fans which local camps their families loved. Here's what they said:

Ozark Mission Project! Nothing is more rewarding than being able to help people in need and build lifelong friendships.” –Bailey Newcomb Faulkner

Culinary Camp at the Clinton Presidential Center and Camp Solgohachia near Morrilton. My boys beg to go back to each of these each summer. I love to take them to places they enjoy so much and want to return. This year we are adding a camp at the Museum of Discovery.” –Cynthia Haller Austin

What's your family's favorite summer camp or activity? Don't see it on our list? Email BNeel@abpg.com and tell us all about it. We'll continue to cover summer camps and classes all summer long right here on LittleRockFamily.com.

Travelers Baseball Returns to Dickey-Stephens Park

The Arkansas Travelers open the 2014 home season at Dickey-Stephens Park on April 10 versus the Midland Rockhounds.

Get ready to hoot and holler for the home team. The Arkansas Travelers 2014 season opener took place in Midland, Texas on April 3, but they’ll be back in North Little Rock for the first home game of the season on April 10!

The Travs will bat against the Midland Rockhounds at Dickey-Stephens Park April 10-12, before taking on the Frisco RoughRiders April 13-15. After the games on April 10, 11 & 13, kids will be invited to run the bases.

Plus, April 13 is Operation Military Appreciation Sunday, as well as $10 Family Sunday. Military families will be honored during the game, and will receive $3 admission tickets with military ID. On Sunday, fans can also receive $10 admission for the whole family when you bring your church bulletin to the box office. For more info about opening weekend, click here.

During the games, families can hang out on the grassy slopes in the outfield or romp in the children’s area, complete with play equipment and bounce attractions. And don't forget to meet the brand-new mascots: Ace, the formidable equine character; and Otey, the much talked-about "swamp oppossum."

Families can look for special discounts and promotions all season long. On April 26, visitors are encouraged to bring their dogs to the game, and on April 27 kids can join Travs coaches and players on the field for a free baseball clinic. Visit on Tuesdays throughout the season for Animal Ambassador Days, in which the Little Rock Zoo brings critters to the ballpark. Families will also love the themed nights on Thursdays, such as Country & Western Night on May 8. For more promotions, giveaways and discounts, click here to see the full list.

To purchase season tickets, mini plans, suite rentals, or to schedule a birthday party, click here. For more info and to find the season schedule, visit Travs.com.

Meet Jennifer Ferguson, Little Rock Family's 2014 Mom's Day Off Winner

Gallery by Meredith Melody Photography

Meet Jennifer Ferguson, our 2014 Mom’s Day Off winner, and go behind the scenes of her glam day of shopping, primping and posing.

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As the staff of Little Rock Family started digging through this year’s Mom’s Day Off nominations, we quickly realized choosing a winner was not going to be easy. We were blown away by superwoman moms who were running businesses, fighting cancer, raising children with special needs, volunteering and more. We wanted to reward every one of these overworked moms with a day of fun.

But we kept going back to a nomination for a busy mom from Maumelle—Jennifer Ferguson. She was raising five kids as a newly single mom and working full-time; yet, the nomination submitted by her mother, Diane, radiated positivity. In the midst of tough times, she was still passionate about serving her community. “I admire her so very much as an incredible, involved mother, as well as her desire to be a voice and a part of so many children’s lives other than just her own,” the nomination read.

Then, we realized that Jennifer had been nominated not once, but twice. Her second nomination from coworker La Keesha Murrill stated: “Jennifer’s patience, kind-heartedness, honesty, and positive attitude is infectious and drives those that come in contact with her.”

Those qualities serve her well as a mother to Braydon, 15, Reagan and Mckenzie, 12, Kayl, 9, and Gunnar,8. “There’s never a dull moment in my house,” Jennifer says, though she maintains that having five children is no more difficult than raising three. “Once the kids outnumber the adults, it’s not any different. There’s always someone to play with.” The athletic and outdoorsy family enjoys going to Lake Willastein Park in Maumelle and discovered geocaching last summer. The kids are on the swim team and play football, and the girls are begging to join softball this year. Jennifer even joined the all-male board of the Maumelle Youth Basketball Association and started a league for girl players three years ago. This is the first year that she didn’t coach her daughters’ basketball team: “I wanted to be the mom instead of the coach. I wanted the opportunity to be their cheerleader,” she says.

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After dedicating 10 years to her family as a stay-at-home mom, Jennifer joined the staff at the American Heart Association, where she worked for almost five years. Now she’s a community director for the March of Dimes Arkansas Chapter and works on community and fundraising events like the Central Arkansas March for Babies (April 26) and the Central Arkansas Jail and Bail (June 19). “My passion is March of Dimes. I have mission babies, so that was a dream job,” she says, adding that three of her children wouldn’t be here if it weren’t for the nonprofit’s work.

Her identical twin daughters, Reagan and Mckenzie, set her on the path for advocacy and fundraising. “You tend to lose yourself—especially having five kids—because you’re a mom from the minute they wake up to the minute they go to bed,” Jennifer says. “There was a period of time when I thought, ‘Who am I? I’ve got to find something for myself.’ I got really involved with church. But getting involved with the Twins Club—that was my big ‘I can do this’ moment,” she says.

Jennifer joined the board of the Twins Club and worked for four years to pass the Twins Law in Arkansas, which gives parents of multiples the right to choose whether their children are in the same classroom through the 6th grade. “I think you can be a great mom and still accomplish the goals you want to accomplish,” she says. “A lot of it is easier said than done. Just like with any goal, when you start pushing yourself, things start happening.”

Congratulations to Jennifer Ferguson—we can’t thank her enough for helping make central Arkansas a better place. For her reward, Mom’s Day Off sponsor Pleasant Ridge Town Center showered her with an amazing prize package. Go behind the scenes of Jennifer’s Mom’s Day Off in the slideshow above and see the details below.

Mom to Model

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1. Shopping

First Mom’s Day Off stop: clothes shopping for the photo shoot. Tanya at Beyond Cotton, II in the Pleasant Ridge Town Center opened the boutique on a Sunday afternoon for Jennifer’s private shopping experience. Jennifer, a jeans and t-shirt kind of gal and University of Arkansas alum, fell in love with a comfy Razorback tee, which Tanya dressed up with glam gold hoops. Tanya also helped accessorize an Eileen Fisher tunic with layered necklaces and gorgeous dresses from Belk with stand-out earrings. For info: 221-1539.

2. Hair

Around the corner at Salon Scarlet, stylist Jessica Smith washed Jennifer’s long locks and started on a fun, flirty ‘do for the photo shoot using Oribe products. While Jennifer’s hair was still damp, she sprayed the Maximista thickening spray from roots to ends. Jessica applied Grandiose at the root to add volume, and ran the smoothing Gel Serum from the mid-section to the ends of the hair. After blow drying, the Soft Lacquer product helped to protect from the curling iron heat and set curls. Jessica then finished off the look with the Dry Texture Spray, which provided a matte finish and hold. For info: 221-1191, SalonScarlet.com.

3. Makeup

Over at the skincare and makeup mecca, Pout (formerly known as Glo Limited), Kristin Ivey gave Jennifer a photo ready look. Focusing on the eyes with Laura Mercier goodies, she applied Ballet Pink, Plum Smoke, and Bamboo and Truffle for shadowing. She created a slight cat eye, topped off with Chantecaille Faux Cils Longest Lash Mascara. Kristin gave Jennifer some color and definition with a pop of Laura Mercier Rose Bloom cheek color, a dusting of Matte Radiance Bronzer and a swipe of Matte Radiance Highlighting Powder around the eyes. With a light dab of Purple Haze Stick Gloss on Jennifer’s lips, we were ready to hit our next destination. For info: 224-8222.

4. Photo shoot

After a light lunch at Panera Bread in the Pleasant Ridge Town Center, we visited Meredith Melody Photography’s airy Hillcrest studio. The photographer turned on some high-energy tunes and Jennifer slipped into her first ensemble. As a woman, mom and glamour portrait photographer, Meredith understands how to make every woman look her absolute best in the camera lens. She demonstrated a variety of poses, fluffed Jennifer’s hair and gave her windblown effect with a hairdryer, and used the sunlight streaming in the windows to create soft, natural portraits. For info: MeredithMelody.com.

Easter Egg Hunts, Bunny Photos and Family Celebrations in Central Arkansas

Image by Shutterstock

Egg hunts, festivals and photo ops are among the many ways to celebrate Easter in central Arkansas. All of the egg-cellent fun is getting started this weekend and continuing through Easter Sunday on April 20.

Keep checking back as we add even more events throughout the month!

Easter Bunny Sightings

Bunny Photo Experience at McCain Mall -- From April 5-19, the Easter Bunny will pose for photos with children in the mall's Center Court. Kids will have the chance to visit with the Bunny and take home a treasured snapshot of the fun occasion. On April 13, children with special needs are invited to participate in the Caring Bunny event, for which many steps will be taken to reduce sensory triggers and create a comforting environment. The event will take place from 11 a.m.-12:30 p.m. and families can sign up for free here. For info: Simon.com/Mall/Mccain-Mall.

Easter Bunny Photos at Bass Pro Shops -- Kiddos can pose with the Easter Bunny, and receive a free 4x6 photo from 11 a.m.-4 p.m. April 12-13, 19-20, 6-8 p.m. April 14-17, and 2-7 p.m. April 18. Plus, they'll be able to participate in free egg hunts and crafts (see details below). For info: BassPro.com/Easter. FREE!

Easter Bunny Photos at Park Plaza Mall -- The big bunny hippity hops into Park Plaza from April 5-19 for photos with little ones. Hours are 10 a.m.-9 p.m. Mon.-Sat. and noon-6 p.m. Sun. For photo package information, click here.

Easter Celebrations

Ongoing

Drop-in Family Program: Naturally Dyed Eggs! at Garvan Woodland Gardens -- Learn more about the powerful dye in certain plants and uses the dyes to decorate eggs. Each child must be accompanied by an adult. 11 a.m.-1 p.m. April 5, 25 & 26. $5 per child plus admission to the Gardens. For info: (501) 262-9606, GarvanGardens.org.

Easter at Bass Pro Shops -- In addition to snapping a few free photos with the Easter (see description above), kids ages 2-10 can search for eggs during an old-fashioned Easter egg hunt from 2-3 p.m. April 12-13 and 19-20. Registration begins at the main entrance at 1:30 p.m.; kids that find five eggs can return them for candy. Visitors can also color an Easter Egg from 1-4 p.m. April 12-13, or make bunny arts & crafts from 4-7 p.m. April 18 and 1-4 p.m. April 19-20. For info: BassPro.com/Easter. FREE!

Easter Weekend at Second Baptist Church in Little Rock -- Join the church for Easter Weekend with Good Friday worship on April 18 and a special Easter Egg Hunt April 19 for the kiddos. Easter Sunday service will be from 10:30 a.m.-11:45 a.m. on April 20. For info: AGilmore@2bclr.com, www.2BCLR.com. FREE!

Saturday, April 5

Breakfast with the Easter Bunny at McCain Mall -- To celebrate the arrival of the Easter Bunny, children and families are invited to dine on breakfast 9-11 a.m. in Center Court. Proceeds benefit the Simon Youth Foundation. Interested attendees can make a reservation here. $6.27 per person.

First Saturday Crafts at The Knowledge Tree in Little Rock -- Drop in anytime during store hours to make an Easter placemat. Bring a special photograph, drawing or picture and the store will provide all other materials. At 12:30 p.m., kids can also learn in a Rainbow Loom Basics workshop; at 1:30 p.m., they'll make a cross charm in the advanced Rainbow Loom class. For info: (501) 663-2877, TheKnowledgeTree.com. FREE!

Friday, April 11

Egg Hunt at The Wonder Place -- An eggstra-special event with surprises for children, this hunt gives kids a chance to find a $50 admission punch card. 5:30-7:30 p.m. April 11. $5, second adult & children under 1 are free. For info: (501) 225-4050, TheWonderPlace.com.

Saturday, April 12

4th Annual "Support Our Sistahs" Easter Egg Hunt at UALR Housing Grounds and Commons Building -- This is a free community event sponsored by the UALR Support Our Sistahs and Housing Activities Council. The event includes Easter egg hunting, crafts, inflatables, and food for the kids to enjoy. 10 a.m.-2 p.m. April 12. For info: (501) 681-8210, 4thAnnualEggHunt.Tumblr.com. FREE!

9th Annual Easter Family Festival at Clinton Presidential Center -- This giant egg hunt features thousands of eco-friendly eggs hidden on the lawn of the Presidential Park. Children can also win prizes, and participate in games and activities. Rain date: 1-4 p.m. April 13. 10 a.m.-2 p.m. April 12. For info: (501) 374-4242, ClintonPresidentialCenter.org. FREE!

Easter Craft Activities at The Knowledge Tree in Little Rock -- Join The Knowledge Tree team for: spring bunny crafts at 11 a.m.; a Rainbow Loom Basics class at 12:30 p.m.; and an Advanced Rainbow Loom class to make Easter egg bracelets at 1:30 p.m. 11 a.m.-2 p.m. April 12. For info: (501) 663-2877, TheKnowledgeTree.com. FREE!

Sunday, April 13

First United Methodist Church Annual Easter Egg Hunt at Allsop Park -- All families and friends invited to this Easter Egg Hunt, complete with a special furry guest. 2 p.m. April 13. For info: FUMCLR.orgFREE!

Saturday, April 19

Annual Easter Egg Hunt at Burns Park -- Meet at Pavillion 10, where kids ages 1-9 are divided into three age groups, with only 25 children seeking out Easter eggs at any given time. When they aren't on the hunt, children can participate in various games and holiday activities, enter to win prizes and take pictures with the Easter Bunny. 8:30-11 a.m. April 19. For info: (501) 753-7307, NLRPR.org. FREE!

Author Meet-and-Greet and Easter Crafts at The Knowledge Tree Little Rock -- At 11:30 a.m., meet local author Carol Dabney, as she talks about her book, "Pablo, the Donkey Used by God." Families can also drop in for arts & crafts all day to make a "peek-a-boo chick" to celebrate Easter. For info: (501) 663-2877, TheKnowledgeTree.com. FREE!

Community Easter Egg Hunt at MacArthur Park -- Be a part of the annual MacArthur Park Easter Egg Hunt sponsored by Second Baptist Church. Enjoy games, crafts, inflatables, and of course, candy-filled eggs. The egg hunt will begin at 11 a.m. on the front lawn of the park. 10 a.m.-2 p.m. April 19. For info: (501) 374-9284, 2BCLR.com. FREE!

Easter Egg Hunt and Roller Skating Party at Arkansas Skatium -- Children 8 years and younger are invited to bring along riding toys, scooters, anything with wheels, except bikes. Roller skates are included in the admission fee. 8:30-10:30 a.m. April 19. $5, kids 2 and under are free. For info: (501) 227-4333, ArkansasSkatium.com.

Easter Egg Hunt at Rolling Oaks Sports Complex in Maumelle -- Children 10 and under can hunt in three different age divisions at this Easter Egg Hunt sponsored by Maumelle Parks and Recreation. In the event of rain, the hunt will be moved to the Jess Odom Community Center. 9 a.m. April 19. For info, click here. FREE!

Easter Egg Hunt at St. James United Methodist Church -- Bring your little egg hunters to this community-wide event. Children ages 2 years-3rd graders are invited to participate. Snap a pic with the Easter Bunny, snack on hot dogs, and bounce on inflatables. 10 a.m. April 19. For info: (501) 217-6700, StJames-UMC.org. FREE!

Easter Egg-stravaganza at Capital Hotel -- At 11 a.m., children can join in the free Easter egg hunt with the Easter bunny. Keep an eye out for two golden eggs, one of which includes complimentary lunch at Ashley's following the hunt. The Children's Bunny Lunch will begin at 11:30 a.m. in Ashley's, and will include a special menu with banana pudding and strawberry tart for dessert. 11 a.m. April 19. To make reservations, call (501) 370-7011.

Easter Eggstravaganza at Whole Foods -- Join the free Easter egg hunt around the store with the Easter Bunny. There will be 3 golden eggs hidden with special prizes. 11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. April 19. For info: WholeFoodsMarket.com. FREE!

Sunday, April 20

26th Annual Community Easter Sunrise Service at First Security Amphitheatre -- Rise early and head to this 7 a.m. sunrise service, held at the RiverFest Amphitheater overlooking the Arkansas River. This year's participants include: Georgia Mjarten, Director of Our House; Mr. Steve Straessle, Principal of Catholic High School for Boys; Erin Hawley, News Anchor for Channel 7; and Kathy Webb, Former State Representative. The Annual Community Easter Sunrise Service is an ecumenical worship service sponsored by Pulaski Heights United Methodist Church. The service will also be broadcast live on KATV Channel 7. 7 a.m. April 20. For info: CommunitySunriseService.com. FREE!

Easter Egg-stasy at DeGray Lake Resort State Park in Bismarck -- A host of programs and activities will focus on spring themes, with eggs taking center stage. Look for lake tours, hikes, demonstrations, crafts, games, and non-traditional egg hunts, including one just for big kids and adults. Contact the park for a detailed schedule. 9 a.m.-4 p.m. April 20. Most events are free. For info: (501) 865-5810, DeGray.com.

For even more family-friendly events in central Arkansas, see our full online calendar here.

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About The Author
Jennifer Pyron is the Associate Publisher and Editor of Little Rock Family magazine. She is the go-to gal for family events, activities, news and opinion. She and husband Charles are the proud, exhausted, penniless parents of Charles Jr. and Emily. Plus, should you need a pop culture lifeline on "Who Wants to Be A Millionaire," you may call her.
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Don't panic! Keep your cool this summer with help from our ultimate guide to summer camps and classes in central Arkansas.

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About This Site

InArkansas.com: your guide for all things Arkansas, including where to Eat, Live, Shop, Play, Visit and Work in the Natural State. Here, find exactly what you're looking for in restaurants and shopping directories; plan weddings and events; and stay abreast of the most fashionable parties and fundraisers. See videos, photos and blogs. Use our Highly Recommended voting system to share your favorite businesses and events. And get our free Daily Recommends e-news for editors' picks of the best in Arkansas dining, gifts, events and more.