Dinosaur Valley Offers Prehistoric Fun For All Ages
About two hours north of Killeen-Fort Hood, outdoor enthusiasts and nature lovers can not only hike, ride mountain bikes, swim, camp, picnic, fish and mingle with various wildlife, but depending on river conditions you might also be able to set your feet inside actual preserved dinosaur tracks.
Dinosaur Valley State Park near Glen Rose, about 50 miles southwest of Fort Worth, is part of the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department system and offers the opportunity to search for ancient dinosaur footprints in the bed of the Paluxy River, a tributary of the mighty Brazos River, which originates in New Mexico and stretches 1,280 miles across Texas to the Gulf of Mexico.
The park at 1629 Park Road 59 is open from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. and overnight camping is available. Adult day-use admission is $7, with children 12 and under admitted free. There are 20 miles of hiking trails, along with camping and fishing supplies, souvenirs and more at the park store.
Dinosaur tracks in the riverbed are not always visible, and trails may be closed due to wet conditions or bad weather, so visitors are advised to contact the park prior to arrival for current trail status and dinosaur track visibility.
A variety of equestrian services are also available, from guided horseback riding to horse-drawn wagon rides and assisted trail rides for kids 3 to 14.
Go to tpwd.texas.gov/state-parks/dinosaur-valley for more information.
Meanwhile, over at Central Texas College’s Mayborn Science Theater, a new slate of planetarium programs is underway, including two new laser light shows and a special look at the inner workings of the sun.
Throughout the month of January, the theater will feature a variety of educational science presentations, including such things as a look inside the cartoon world of atoms and molecules, an introductory rocket tour of the solar system, and an exploration outside the solar system.
Laser Friday is scheduled Jan. 25 and features another new laser light show, “Laser Genesis” highlighting some of the pop band Genesis’ greatest hits at 7 p.m., followed at 8 p.m. by the patriotic “Laser Tribute,” and “Laser Rush 2112” at 9 p.m.
Warren’s Star Tour is Saturday, Jan. 26 at 7 p.m. and pre-empts the regularly scheduled show. The tour will highlight the constellations and stars visible in the night sky over the Northern and Southern hemispheres.
Weekday matinees are scheduled each Wednesday at 3:30 p.m. There will also be a matinee doubleheader on the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. holiday starting at 1:30 p.m., with “First and Farthest,” followed at 2:30 p.m. by the laser light show “Spirit of America.”
For information about show schedules, memberships, directions and more, visit the Mayborn Science Theater online at starsatnight.org.
On Fort Hood, the post’s MWR section is offering a Digital Photo Contest, with all comers encouraged to enter photos capturing “favorite views, moments and adventures from all across the world.” Entries are being accepted until Jan. 20, 2019. For more information, go to global.armymwr.com/promos/title-2018-digital-photo-contest.
Apache Arts and Crafts Center on Fort Hood is open Tuesday through Saturday for a variety of do-it-yourself projects, including picture frames, ceramics, and ceramics birthday parties for kids. Contact MWR for more information.
Anyone feeling the need to burn off a few holiday calories with a little more physical weekend activity could head on over to Killeen’s Urban Air Trampoline and Adventure Park, 2102 Jennifer Drive, between West Jasper Drive and Highway 190.
With almost too many activities to mention all in one place, this complex includes not only trampoline-jumping, but such things as a Sky Rider indoor coaster, ropes course, climbing walls, obstacle course, tubes playground, trapeze, dodgeball, and slam dunk zone. For more information on the park, go to www.urbanairtrampolinepark.com/locations/texas/killeen.