The Christmas season is drawing to a close, but the children are still out of school and stuck at home.
What to do?
Whether you are looking to explore the outdoors or prefer to have fun indoors, there is a plethora of activities in the Longview area.
Do you want to experience nature in your own garden and maybe get some exercise? Try these outdoor spots:
The 26-acre Longview Arboretum and Nature Center features a plethora of plants, flowers, bodies of water and more. The property at 706 W. Cotton St. is open 10 am to 5 pm Wednesday through Saturday and noon to 5 pm Sunday and closed on New Years Day. Entrance is free for members; $ 5 for general admission; free for children 3 and under, $ 3 for seniors and the military; and $ 18 for a family pass for up to six people.
The town of Longview has many walking trails that also provide opportunities for joggers, cyclists, pets and more. For more information, visit longviewtexas.gov/3336/Walking-Trails .
Tyler State Park has 13 miles of hiking, biking and fishing trails. You can borrow a rod and reel, but you have to buy the bait, which is sold at the park store. Kayaks and canoes are also available for hire. The park is open daily from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. with an entrance fee of $ 6 for adults. Children 12 and under are admitted free. The park is closed on Christmas Day. Regular hours will be observed on New Years Eve and New Years Day.
Daingerfield State Park has an 80-acre lake that offers fishing, boating, and swimming opportunities. Camping is also an option, either in a tent or in a historic cabin which can be hired. The park is open from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily with free admission of $ 4 for adults. Children 12 and under can enter for free. If the park staff is not present, a self-pay kiosk is available for entry.
Martin Creek Lake State Park is 20 miles southeast of Longview and offers an array of outdoor activities, such as fishing, hiking, swimming and camping. The park is open from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily with an entrance fee of $ 3 for adults. Children 12 and under are admitted free. If the park staff is not present, a self-pay kiosk is available for entry.
Caddo Lake State Park has a boating experience like no other. Bald cypress trees draped in Spanish moss dominate the lake and give the streams a unique look. The park is open from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily with an entrance fee of $ 3 for adults. Children 12 and under are admitted free. If the park staff is not present, a self-pay kiosk is available for entry.
Day passes for all state parks can be purchased at texasstateparks.reserveamerica.com .
Even if school is over, that doesn’t mean that learning should also take a break:
The Longview Public Library has more to explore than just books. Video games, DVDs, and Blu-rays are some of the entertainment that can be purchased with a library card.
The library will be closed for the holidays from December 24 to 27 and from December 31 to January 3. Normal library hours are 10 am to 6 pm Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday; 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Tuesday and Thursday; and from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday.
Longview World of Wonders at 112 E. Tyler St., which offers a variety of hands-on activities for kids, is open 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on December 22 and 23; from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on December 29 and 30; 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Dec. 31 and closed 24 to 26 Dec. and Jan 1 Go to www.longviewwow.org/heures for more information on admission fees.
The Center for Earth & Space Science Education at Tyler Junior College, 1411 E. Lake St., is closed on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day as well as New Years Eve and Day. Until December 30, the facility is open from 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday. Ticket prices vary for adults and children. For information visit sciencecenter.tjc.edu .
Discovery Science Place, at 308 N. Broadway in Tyler, is closed Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, and closed January 1-7. Otherwise, normal hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Friday; From 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday and from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday. Admission is $ 10 for those 13 and over, $ 8 for those 2 to 12, $ 8 for those 65 and over; $ 7 for active military and free for children under 2 and members. For information, visit discoverescienceplace.org .
Air U Trampoline Park, 4300 US 259, has a wide range of trampolines to bounce on and foam pits to jump in. It will be closed on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day and open from 1 p.m. to 9 p.m. on New Year’s Eve and from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. on New Year’s Day. Check the Air U Facebook page for hourly updates. Regular park hours are 4 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 4 p.m. to 9 p.m. Friday, 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Saturday, and 1 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Sunday.
G-Force, 4800 Gilmer Road, satisfies everyone who needs speed. Go-cart races, trampolines and arcade games are available in the indoor complex. G-Force offers special holiday hours while children are out of school. Temporary hours are from noon to 8 p.m. Monday to Thursday, from noon to 10 p.m. on Friday, from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Saturday and from 1 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Sunday. Normal weekday hours when school resumes at 4 p.m.
Reo Starplex, 4716 W. Loop 281, can provide a good rolling moment. Hit the ice rink and have a bite to eat from the grill. The ice rink will be closed on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day as well as New Years Eve. Regular hours are 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. Monday and Tuesday, 3:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. Wednesday and Thursday, 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. and 7 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. Friday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. and 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday 30 and 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday.
Hit the target at Lumberjacks Ax Throwing, 204 N. Center St. It is closed on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day as well as New Years Eve. It is open from 2pm to 11pm on New Years Day. Regular hours are 4:30 p.m. to 10 p.m. Monday to Thursday, 4:30 p.m. to 11 p.m. Friday and noon to 11 p.m. Saturday.
If you’re looking for family entertainment at a slower pace, try Putt-Putt Golf and Games, 2630 Bill Owens Pkwy. It is closed on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day as well as New Years Eve, but will be open on New Years Day. Normal hours are 3 p.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 3 p.m. to 10 p.m. Friday, 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday, and 1 p.m. to 9 p.m. Sunday.
Solve the puzzles to beat the Longview Escape Room, 3506 W. Loop 281. “Murder Mystery”, “Wild West” and “Gamblers” are just a few of the rooms to choose from. It is closed on Christmas Day and New Years Day, but will operate during normal hours on Christmas Eve and New Years Day. Normal hours are noon to 10:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday, noon to midnight Friday, 11 a.m. to midnight Saturday, and closed Sunday.
Stuck in the holiday spirit?
Not ready to let go of this holiday cheer? Head to some of these attractions for a bright night:
Carmela’s Magical Santa Land, 6085 US 259 North, will only be there for a few more weeks, so grab your keys and queue. The light exhibition is open from 5:30 p.m. to 10 p.m. Sunday to Thursday and from 5:30 p.m. to 11 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays until January 5. Admission is free, but donations are appreciated.
Christmas in the Park is a free community light show put on by volunteers at Hugh Camp Memorial Park in Liberty City, 5716 Old Highway 135 N. The lights come on after dark and stay on until dark. park closes at 9 p.m. new Year.
Wonderland of Lights features thousands of lights decorating the historic Harrison County Courthouse in Marshall and other downtown locations, along with activities such as ice skating and a carousel. A calendar of events is available on the Facebook Wonderland of Lights page.