Planning a family getaway can be stressful. Between finding things to do that meet everyone’s interests, figuring out where to stay, and finding the best driving routes to get there, there are lots of things to consider. One big factor for us is always weather, especially here in the Ozarks region, where things can change vastly from day to day. If you want to weather-proof your visit to Rogers, keep these attractions on your itinerary.
The South Side of Rogers has exploded with growth over the past 5 years, boasting many new shops and eateries. Pinnacle Hills Promenade is at the middle of this growth. While the mall is an outdoor shopping center, there is plenty of parking throughout so that you don’t have to walk through the elements if you don’t want to. Pinnacle Hills is anchored at its edges by Cabela’s, Dillard’s, J. C. Penney, and Malco Movie Theater. You’ll also find family favorites like DSW shoes, Gap Kids, Build-A-Bear, Children’s Place, and much more.
Fast Lanes is like Chuck E. Cheese, a state of the art bowling alley, and an indoor playground all rolled into one. The Fast Lanes Family Fun pass gives you an hour of bowling, a large pizza and pitcher of soda, 30 minutes of unlimited video games, and a game of laser tag for up to 5 people. This pass was the perfect combo of activities for our family.
We had our own lane in Cosmo’s Corner, where our server took our food and drink order while we rolled glowing bowling balls down the lanes and boogied along with the music videos playing on the big screen. The kids took advantage of the automatic bumpers and ball ramps available for younger bowlers.
We followed up with some time in the Dixieland arcade — there are games for all ages here. Finally, we finished up with an exciting game of laser tag! We gave thumbs up all around for Fast Lanes. Checkout the Fast Lanes website for special packages.
Downtown Rogers is not to be missed, with its unique collection of locally owned shops and eateries bordering the brick-paved streets and rail lines that harken back to the city’s original hay day as a Frisco Railroad stop. There are plenty of ways to get in out of the elements, but we especially enjoyed the Rogers Daisy Airgun Museum and the Farmer’s Market.
The Rogers Daisy Airgun Museum tells the tale of how the Plymouth Iron Windmill Company became Daisy Outdoor Products. Even if you aren’t a big fan of BB Guns, the artifacts and stories encapsulated in this museum will entertain you. From the company’s ties to comic strip hero Red Ryder, to the movie A Christmas Story (You’ll shoot your eye out!), to the golf balls that astronaut Alan Shepard hit on the moon, the historical exhibits are very interesting.
Our 8 and 9 year olds were especially fascinated with the toy space guns and the old advertisements from the early 1900s. At the end of the tour, you’ll find yourself in the Daisy “outlet store” where there are limited edition as well as scratch and dent guns for sale.
Kids who go through the tour get a commemorative medallion. Our kids also appreciated the opportunity to play in the barrel of BBs.
The Downtown Rogers Farmer’s Market recently moved into a newly remodeled building at the corner of Arkansas and Poplar Streets. It is open Saturdays April 20th thru October 29th from 7am-12pm and Thursdays May 20th thru August 19th 4pm-8pm. The new indoor facility can house up to 40 vendors (depending on the season) and keeps you cozy while you shop.
It’s fun to see all the interesting produce and handiwork - we got to feel bison fur, admire carved gourd art, and smell different herbs. If you visit, we highly recommend taking home some Carrot Cake Jam from the Meissterbrew Farm booth!
Just to the North of Rogers, you’ll find an amazing piece of history at the Pea Ridge National Military Park. The 4,300 acre park is the most intact battlefield in the United States. At the visitor center, we watched a short movie about the battle, a
nd the kids picked up Junior Ranger activity booklets. We explored the educational exhibits inside the visitors center to complete the first part of their booklet, and then we headed out on the 7 mile drive that circles the battlefield. Ideally, you can get out and explore each of the 9 stops along the drive, but if weather is a hinderance, you can also listen to the audio tour of the park from the comfort of your car.
The route ends back at the visitor center, where we stopped back in so the kids could turn in their booklets and be sworn in as Junior Rangers!
Another great perk to making Rogers your getaway hub is that it is close to everything! For more weather-proof fun, check out Crystal Bridges Art Museum and Amazeum Science Center, both a 10 minute drive to the North in Bentonville, or hitch a scenic ride on the Arkansas & Missouri Railroad, 20 minutes to the south in Springdale.
For our family getaway weekend, we stayed at the Country Inn and Suites, located at 4304 W. Walnut Street. With its cozy country decor, hearty free breakfast, and generously sized indoor pool, it is a perfect home base for families.
Rooms are spacious and nicely appointed, and the kids loved the fact that they have cookies available in the lobby all the time! Country Inn and Suites is just off of the main highway, and only minutes from downtown.