Children and nature enthusiasts alike won’t want to miss the Witt Stephens Jr. Central Arkansas Nature Center, one of the newest additions to the River Market district. Equipped with touch-screen technology, HD presentations, classrooms and collections of natural history, the center captivates kids while introducing visitors to nature preservation and Arkansas wildlife.

One of the most impressive exhibits, an aquarium, spans the length of the exhibit room. The freshwater tank is divided by region and adapted to the habitat of a number of different freshwater species available for catch in the state. The tank is the situated under a depiction of the Arkansas River and has an open top where kids are free to splash and observe fish from all different angles.

Kids also favor the replica forest, which displays a realistic perspective of the vegetation and wildlife in the area with raccoon tracks, black bears and little snipes on display. Older kids will enjoy the interactive timeline that spans from 1540 through today and highlights topics like natural changes to the land, various types of indigenous and extinct wildlife and the effects of urban growth to Arkansas’ diverse landscape. Other exhibits highlight the three separate divisions of the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission and the roles they play in protecting and sustaining Arkansas’ natural environment.

The Witt Stephens Nature Center makes for a family-friendly educational experience in downtown Little Rock. Plus, the center’s open layout easily accommodates large groups. You can visit from 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday and 1 p.m.-4:30 p.m. Sunday. Admission is free.