Evans Children’s Adventure Garden
The Evans Children’s Adventure Garden offers 1.5 acres of pure fun! The interactive garden rocks with more than 3,200 tons (or 6.4 million pounds) of Arkansas-quarried boulders positioned to encourage exploration of the natural environment. A 12-foot waterfall cascades over the entryway to an ADA accessible, man-made cave, beckoning children inside to discover “ancient” fossils overhead. The garden also features a unique bridge constructed from tree branches and a maze of rocks that lead down to a series of wading pools. Parents can enjoy a bird’s eye view of their children at play from a 450-foot long, 20-foot tall elevated walkway that also provides scenic vistas of Lake Hamilton and the surrounding woodlands.
The Benham Group of Lowell, AR, drafted the conceptual design for the children’s garden and Brent Vinson, one of the company’s landscape architects, was the lead designer. To emulate the look of centuries-old formations, David Slawson, a nationally recognized Japanese garden designer from Cleveland, OH, was brought in to manipulate the rocks and boulders to create the foundation and cave entrance, including the waterfall and streambed. Funds for the construction of this phase of the children’s garden were generously donated by Hot Springs residents Bob and Sunny Evans.
Phase two of the Evans Children’s Adventure Garden will consist of three large tree houses, along with five other smaller structures that will complete the Gardens’ plan to bring children into the woods in an engaging, natural environment that promotes learning. The Portico Group, founded in Seattle, and Crafton Tull & Associates of Little Rock will provide design services for this phase, for which funds are still being raised.