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Devil’s Den State Park

Summer is here and we’re all in desperate need of some fun. As we hit the road for our adventures, here are some itinerary ideas for anyone seeking relaxation, nature, history, the arts and more.

For the beer connoisseur

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Black Apple Hard Cider

Seventeen stops make up the Fayetteville Ale Trail, an opportunity to get a glimpse into the craft brew culture of northwest Arkansas. Passports can be acquired at any brewery location, including Black Apple Hard Cider, Arkansas’

first cidery in downtown Springdale. Try the aromatic and tasty Hibiscus Cider, a gulp of flavors including clean citrus and berry with floral aromas.

For the animal lover

Springfield, Missouri, is home to five animal-centric attractions: Wonders of Wildlife Museum and Aquarium, the Dickerson Park Zoo, Wild Animal Safari, National Tiger Sanctuary and Rutledge-Wilson Farm Park. All provide up-close experiences with creatures great and small. Family friendly Dickerson Park Zoo has exhibits from animals across the globe, as well as in Missouri’s backyard. Don’t miss the playful otters.

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Turpentine Creek Wildlife Refuge


Turpentine Creek Wildlife Refuge is a sanctuary for abandoned, abused and neglected big cats that invites guests to tour and stay at the 450-plus acre property. Adult-only and family friendly accommodations are themed to the African savannah and provide the chance to go to sleep as lions and tigers roar at sunset. RV and tent sites are available to rent, too.

For the museum goer


Thomas Cole (American, 1801–1848). An Italian Autumn, ca. 1844–45. Oil on canvas. Oklahoma City Museum of Art. 

Two new exhibitions open at the Oklahoma City Museum of Art this month. “From Heroes to Immortals” features 20 prints recounting classical and famous myths through human form and landscapes. The Italian countryside is depicted in photos, prints and paintings in “A Room with a View.” Both exhibits complement the exhibit “The Painters of Pompeii: Roman Frescoes from the National Archaeological Museum, Naples,” which opens June 26.

The American West is curated in multiple galleries in permanent and temporary exhibits at Oklahoma City’s National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum. This summer, look for the annual Prix de West invitation art exhibition and sale to return June 7, as well as “Viva Mexico,” which explores how Mexico’s independence influenced the American West, opening July 9.

Florida Mexicana

Alfredo Ramos Martínez, Florida Mexicana, ca. 1936, Oil on canvas, 36 × 30 in.  Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, Bentonville, Arkansas.

Celebrating its first decade, Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art will open “Crystal Bridges at 10” on July 10. Primarily drawing on the museum’s permanent collection, more than 130 works will be on display — several of which are crowd favorites shown in new, creative ways. Step outside and explore the museum’s 120 acres that features more than four miles of trails through the Ozark landscape.

For those seeking the resort life

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Carlton Landing

Carlton Landing, located on the shores of Lake Eufaula, bursts with charm and ambiance, all within an hour and half drive from Tulsa. Book a stay in one of the property’s bungalows or larger homes and be within walking distance of water sports and outdoor adventures. It’s hard to beat a sunset from the lakeshore.

With 27 holes of lakeside golf, Shangri-la is a top-rated championship course less than two hours from Tulsa. Situated on Grand Lake’s Monkey Island, the resort is a getaway for those looking to spend some time outdoors — with fishing, boating and sports courts — along with those looking to kick back in the spa, poolside or from one of its luxury suites. 

For the nature lover

The name might be deceiving, but Arkansas’ Devil’s Den State Park does nothing but delight for those seeking a tranquil, natural escape. The park stands as one of the most intact Civilian Conservation Corps sites with numerous buildings and structures that date to the 1930s, all with their rustic charm. The park has 17 cabins and 135 campsites, a pool, park cafe, and a plethora of hiking trails, including the 15-mile Butterfield Hiking Trail — just two-and-a-half hours from Tulsa. 

For the history buff

Take a glimpse back in time and make a stop at the Little House on the Prairie Museum near Independence, Kansas. Guests can visit a replica of American author Laura Ingalls Wilder’s one-room log cabin, while also touring an authentic one-room schoolhouse from the 1870s and a post office constructed in 1885.

Visitors to the Sod House Museum can see the state’s only remaining sod house as well as artifacts that tell the story of Oklahoma’s pioneer days. Located in Aline, only a short drive from the Salt Plains National Wildlife Refuge, the area boasts several historic and geologic sites of interest to travelers. 

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