Opt-Outside and Spend ‘Green Friday’ in an Arkansas State Park
Start a new tradition! Instead of stressing out about finding a good deal on “Black Friday,” why not take the time to be thankful for all that we have here in Arkansas–clean water, air, and time with friends and family? Try “Green Friday,” a chance to give a gift that is priceless – a connection – a memory! This is an antidote to Black Friday: the shop-‘til-you-drop onslaught that kicks off the holiday shopping season. In 2022, join the thousands of folks who will opt to feast their eyes on Mother Nature’s cornucopia a day after feasting on Thanksgiving turkey instead of battling the madness at the malls. Green Friday programs will be offered at many Arkansas State Parks on November 25, 2022. Visitors can participate in a guided tour or strike out on their own in order to swap the commercial buzz for the tranquility of nature.
The idea of Green Friday began several years ago when outdoor co-op REI shut its doors on Black Friday in order to encourage people to choose the outdoors over fighting it out in the aisles. Their decision to close on Black Friday was originally made out of concern for its employees, said Ben Steele, the company’s executive vice president and chief customer officer.
“When we really thought about that day, and we thought about the experience that we’re creating for our employees on both Thanksgiving and Black Friday, we just kind of stepped back.” This year, it launched a campaign called “Opt to Act,” encouraging employees and customers to take simple actions to reduce their environmental impact.
There is true value in our natural areas, recreational activities, and traditions. Getting out and exploring them with friends and family are those priceless connections – those priceless memories. What is your “connection?” Hiking or biking in the woods? Doing a craft? Find real value at an Arkansas state park by reconnecting with the things that many of us find important in life. A park is an ideal place to avoid the stress of crowds, long lines, and rain checks on sale items usually associated with the holidays. Consider new family traditions that you may just find priceless. The memories you make will last far longer than the latest gadget.
Green Friday Events at Arkansas State Parks
- Mississippi River State Park – Join a park interpreter for adventures into the natural world around you. You can choose from any of our rental equipment to explore the park further or relax by the water.
- Bull Shoals-White River State Park – Ditch the holiday shopping frenzy and create new “Green Friday” traditions with family and friends by visiting Bull Shoals-White River State Park. Enjoy interpretive exhibits and a historical film about the White River at the James A. Gaston Visitor Center, hike or bike on one of our multi-use trails, or fish along the banks of the White River.
- Mammoth Spring State Park – The perfect place to avoid the stress of the holiday season and make lifelong memories. Come out and hike the spring lake trail, tour the depot museum, visit the playground, or shoot hoops on our basketball court.
- Crowley’s Ridge State Park – invites you to spend your day outside and away from crowded department stores. We offer opportunities for biking, hiking, picnicking, camping, and more.
- Petit Jean State Park – Experience a primitive camp and learn some of the survival skills used by Arkansas pioneers at the 24th Annual Mountain Rendezvous. Watch a variety of demonstrations including muzzle-loading rifles, tomahawk throwing, and more! Compete in competitions including tomahawk throwing, pioneer pack out, and fire starting.
- Prairie Grove Battlefield State Park – Avoid the stress of Black Friday and instead spend this holiday season with your family and friends experiencing your Arkansas State Park. Hike the 1-mile Battlefield Trail, peek inside some historic buildings, and drop by the Hindman Hall Museum to experience the history that happened here.
- Lake Dardanelle State Park – Come and go activity stations will be available from 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. in the Lakeview Room. All ages are welcome. Visit all the stations and stamp your Green Friday passport to receive a special discount in the park’s gift shop.
- Hobbs State Park-Conservation Area – A fun alternative to shopping on Black Friday by getting outdoors in nature with your family and friends! At 1 p.m. we’ll have a reading of The Lorax, followed by some crafts from 1:30-3:30 (come and go as you please). At 3 p.m. join Park Interpreter Chris for the 8 “ates” hike on the 0.25-mile Ozark Plateau Trail, which is ADA accessible. Learn about the 8 strategies wildlife have for surviving winter
Find even more fun ways to enjoy Green Friday by going to ArkansasStateParks.com/events. Also, let us know how you spent Green Friday on social media by using use the hashtags #ARStateParks, #GreenFriday, and #OptOutside.