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By Lindsay Vidrine
It happened right in front of our eyes. We saw it coming but it came and went so quickly. What is it? The carefree and relaxing days of summer vacations!
School days are slowly inching away at the valuable time that remains on the calendar for family getaways to destinations near and far.
Although the temperature gauge reminds us that we are still in the hot, sweltering days of summer, we can look ahead to the Labor Day holiday and planning fun adventures for the fall months and cooler weather.
Start by marking the date for an Oklahoma State Park fall festival for the entire family to enjoy. Held from October 15-17, the Robbers Cave Fall Festival at Robbers Cave State Park near Wilburton has become one of the largest events in the state. For those who appreciate the beauty and fine detail of a classic automobile, prepare to feast your eyes on hundreds of the magnificent machines on display at the park during this yearly event. Palate-pleasing foods are offered up by a variety of vendors spread throughout the park. Early Christmas shoppers are guaranteed to find a gift for even the hardest-to-please distant relative or favorite in-law at several hundred craft booths. Craft makers from across Oklahoma and surrounding states offer their finest homemade items including woodcrafts, jewelry, candles and much more. All weekend, live music flows throughout the park for a toe-tapping, foot-stomping good time. Children will find plenty to keep them occupied with carnival rides, face painting and children’s crafts. Parking and free tram service are available at the park however festival guests are encouraged to park downtown and take advantage of the free shuttle bus that provides transportation to the park.
At the end of October, ghosts and goblins come out of hiding and into the streets and open air as they begin their haunting search for sweet treats. Lake Eufaula, Dripping Springs, Lake Thunderbird, Tenkiller State Park and Western Hills Guest Ranch are some of the parks hosting Halloween events that include anything from haunted hayrides to hikes and horseback rides along spooky trails and fun costume parties.
Bring together the smell of firewood, the sight of beautiful hues of autumn leaves, the sounds of banjos and fiddles and the taste of mouth-watering food dishes, and you’ve got the Beavers Bend Folk Festival and Craft Show. This annual fall affair takes place November 12-14 in the Forest Heritage Center Museum at Beavers Bend Resort Park near Broken Bow. One of the problems this festival presents is how you’re going to fit all of the activities into only three fun-filled days. After taking in all of the unique turn-of the century arts and crafts, candle-makers, lace crafters, musical attractions, quilt displays, handmade wood items and yummy food, you might wish to stay in the park a day or two longer to relax and wind down. During the festival, children stay entertained for hours by the furry animals at the petting zoo and listening to wild tales spun by the local storytellers. If you need time away from the hustle and bustle of the festival, spend an afternoon at Beavers Bend Resort Park and unwind by the soothing waters of the Mountain Fork River, hike the miles of trails, or perfect your swing at nearby Cedar Creek Golf Course.
If your idea of relaxation is spending quality highway time in the car with your family and taking in the vivid displays of changing leaves, don’t forget to order your Oklahoma Fall Foliage Tours brochure. The informative brochure contains maps and driving direction to some state parks and other popular locations throughout the state where a kaleidoscope of colors dominate the landscape.
These are just a few of the many great choices you may select as you make plans for the fall season. No matter what you decide, you’re sure to satisfy your traveling spirit at one of these great destinations.
To order your free Oklahoma Fall Foliage brochure or for fall event information at state parks, lodges and golf courses, visit TravelOk.com or call toll-free 800-652-6552.