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Turpentine Creek Spring Break almost here


For Turpentine Creek Wildlife Refuge, Spring Break is when things really kick off again for the year – the weather gets warmer and the big cats enjoy their time outside and the change of the seasons.

Booking for lodging at TCWR during this time of year is always “get it while you can,” according to Lodging Coordinator Lori Hartle. “At the moment there are still some vacancies available.”

In addition to its lodges, suites, and tree house, Turpentine Creek also offers camping and RV sites, also popular once the weather begins to warm.

One thing to keep in mind is that with its proximity to Eureka Springs, TCWR is a perfect jumping-off point to enjoy the rest of the area’s attractions – the Great Passion Play and Christ of the Ozarks, Lake Leatherwood Park, shopping and dining downtown, and all the canoeing and other outdoor activities available west of the town toward Beaver Lake.

“Lots of times people come here just for us and fail to take advantage of the other things to do around here,” Hartle said. “Or else they stop by here as an afterthought and wish they’d come when they had more time, or that they’d just stayed here outright.”

Turpentine Creek Wildlife Refuge is always in need of volunteers. Either individually or in groups, people find their donated time very rewarding. While there is never contact between volunteers and the big cats, as long you you’re over 18 (or over 12 if accompanied by an adult), there are many projects which need to be done that currently take time from our primary staff.

For more info on how to volunteer, email Ivy Cooper at or call (479) 253-5958.

Spring Break will wind up here on Saturday, March 28, with one of Turpentine Creek’s most popular events of the year, its 25th annual Kite Festival celebration.

“Art With an Altitude,” sponsored by KaleidoKites of Eureka Springs, is a free family event inviting attendees to bring their own kites or buy one at the refuge. The celebration includes vendors, contests and fun activities for parents and children.

KaleidoKites’ experts will be available to assist children in kite making and flying techniques. Donations to the refuge requested for kite making assistance.

“Making and flying kites is a ‘green’ sport’ families can share. It’s wind-fueled and gets kids away from sedentary activities like TV viewing and video games,” says Steve Rogers, KaleidoKites co-owner. “It’s a great photo-opportunity with world-class kites worth over a thousand dollars flown during the event. These kites are works of art, which is only fitting for an artist’s community like Eureka Springs.”

Admission is free for kite flying; regular admission prices apply to tour refuge wildlife on display. Proceeds help pay for the rescue and ongoing care of over 120 tigers, lions, cougars and other wildlife that make the sanctuary a life-long home.

For vendor information for this and other TCWR events contact

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