Thursday, July 28, 2016

20 Things to do East of Fort Rucker, Alabama

This is the east part of the 100 Things to do within 100 miles of Fort Rucker: The Ultimate Day Trip List.  Make sure you also check out the lists of things to do North, South, and West of Fort Rucker.

A few reminders about this list before we get started.  I've listed these places in order of distance from the Fort Rucker Aviation Museum. Also, these places are all within 100 miles driving distance, not as the crow flies. Thanks to Fort Rucker's rural location you have to travel on twisty back roads to reach towns that wouldn't be that far away if there was a straight road leading to them.

1. Battle of Newton Reenactment
John Hutto Park
Newton, Alabama
8 miles from Fort Rucker
Cost: Free including all games and activities
Hours: October 15th and 16th, 2016

The only Civil War battle to happen in the Wiregrass area took place in Newton. It wasn't so much of a battle as it was locals defending the courthouse from some Confederate deserters who were trying to burn records of their enlistment in the Confederate Army. However, that hasn't stopped the The Battle of Newton Society from staging reenactments every year. The reenactments take place at John Hutto Park.

2. Riverside Motorcross Park
7348 West Hwy 134
Newton, Alabama
8 miles from Fort Rucker
Cost: $25 per person per day. $10 for each additional rider on the same bike. $10 on the peewee track. Camping starts at $30 per night
Hours: 9:00 am to dark
Phone Number: (334) 791-5440

If you are into dirt bike racing there is an excellent track located just a short distance from Fort Rucker. There are bleachers on site if you want to come out and watch the riders.

3. Continental Drive In
14200 U.S. Hwy. 84 West
Wicksburg, Alabama
10 miles southeast of Fort Rucker
Cost: $8.00 for an adult ticket, $7.00 for active military, and $5 for a child
Hours: Friday through Sunday evenings
Phone Number: (334) 692-3890

Drive in movies have a nostalgic quality to them. They are also a great way to take young children to a movie without worrying about disturbing the people around you.

4. Holiday Spectacular Park
1768 Hubbard Road
Wicksburg, Alabama
11 miles from Fort Rucker
Cost: $8.00 per person includes everything except the amusement rides. $15.00 per person for the amusement rides. Children under 5 are free. There is no additional fee for concerts. Hay rides from the parking area to the park are also included in the price.
Hours: Open 5:30 pm to 10:30 pm. From December 1st through 31st for the Christmas season
Phone Number: (334) 790-5112

During the month of December the Holiday Spectacular Park in Wicksburg opens its gates for people to come celebrate the Christmas Season.  There are many things to enjoy inside the park from face painting, a playground, bungee jump, a rock wall, and more.  Concerts happen throughout the month and fireworks shows happen on Christmas Eve and New Years Eve.

5. Adventureland Miniature Golf
3738 West Main Street (Hwy. 84 West)
Dothan, Alabama
25 miles southeast of Fort Rucker
Cost: Mini golf is $7 for 18 holes (kids 5 and under are free). Other prices are available on the website.
Hours: Generally 10:00 am to 9:00 pm, but open later on weekends.
Phone Number: (334) 793-9100

Why drive all the way to Panama City Beach when there is a great family activity place right in Dothan? Adventureland has Go-Karts, Bumper Boats, Batting Cages, and an Arcade. My favorite thing is the Miniature Golf Course that has large statues of animals scattered throughout. This is a great place to go during the cooler months of the year.

6. Fun Zone Skate Center
465 Westgate Parkway
Dothan, Alabama
21 miles from Fort Rucker
Cost: $9 for package A $25 for Package B
Hours: Hours change with the seasons. Check the website for current hours.
Phone Number: (334) 678-7529

The Fun Zone Skate Center is the perfect place to take your kids on hot days when you are sick of being in the house. The center has a roller skating rink, but that's not all. They also have things like bumper cars, laser tag, inflatable bounce houses, and an arcade.

7. Waterworld
401 Recreation Road
Dothan, Alsbama
21 miles from Fort Rucker
Cost: $12 for adults, $9 for children from 3-12, Children 2 and under are free.  Half price nights on Tuesday & Thursday from 5pm-9pm. Military Discounts of 15% off admission
Hours: Open during the summer months, but hours and days vary. Check website for exact dates and times.
Phone Number: (334) 615-3750

This is another fun place to go on hot days. The water slides are bigger than what you will find at Splash! on Fort Rucker and so it will be more fun for teenagers.

8. Wiregrass Museum of Art
126 Museum Avenue
Dothan, Alabama
25 miles southeast of Fort Rucker
Cost: Free
Hours: Wednesday - Friday 10:00 am to 5:00 pm Saturday from 10:00 am to 3:00 pm
Phone Number: (334)-794-3871

This museum has several permanent as well as rotating exhibits. There is a children's area in the basement.

9. Wiregrass Commons Mall - Carousel and Mini Golf
900 Commons Drive (Near where Montgomery Highway meets the Ross Clark Circle)
Dothan, Alabama
25 miles southeast of Fort Rucker
Cost: Depends on activity
Hours: The mall is open from 10:00 to 9:00.
Phone Number: (334) 792-5999

This small mall has a nice classic style carousel is located near the food court. The carousel is $1.50 per rider.
Purple Penguin, a glow in the dark miniature golf course, is also located inside the mall.  18 holes of golf cost $8 per person ages 5 and up.  Children 4 and under play free with paying adult.  There is a limit of 1 child per 1 paying adult.

10. Murals and Peanut Statues
Dothan, Alabama
25 miles southeast of Fort Rucker
Cost: Free
Hours: Best viewed during daylight hours
Phone Number: (334) 794-6622 (Visitor Center number)

Many buildings in Dothan have become outdoor canvasses for over 15 murals depicting different aspects of the area's history. There are also over 60 large fiberglass statues of peanuts scattered around the city. The Dothan Visitor Center located at 3311 Ross Clark Cir has information about where to find each piece of art.

11. Landmark Park
430 Landmark Dr (Just off of the 431 on the north side of town)
Dothan, Alabama
25 miles southeast of Fort Rucker
Cost: $4 for anyone over the age of 13. $3 for children from age 3 to 12. Free for children two and under.
Hours: Monday through Saturday from 9:00 to 5:00. On Sunday the hours are noon to 5:00. The planetarium is only open on Saturdays and Sundays.
Phone Number: (334) 794-3452

There is so much to love about Landmark Park. There are walking trails, historic buildings, an observatory, and a fun playground. The trails take you through a wooded wetland. There is a boardwalk with displays about the area. This is a great place for children.

Click here to read about my family's visit.

*Special Instructions: This is a Blue Star Museum so it will provide free admission to military families during the summer from Memorial Day to Labor Day.

12. Dothan Botanical Gardens
5130 Headland Ave
Dothan Alabama
27 miles from Fort Rucker
Cost: Free but suggested donation
Hours: 7:00 am to 5:00 pm every day
Phone Number: (334) 793-3224

This is a great place to walk around and see many well cared for gardens.

13. National Peanut Festival Fairgrounds
5622 Highway 231 South
Dothan, Alabama
29 miles from Fort Rucker
Cost: Gate admission is $7.00 per person over the age of 6. Children ages 5 and under are admitted free with an adult.  There are additional charges for rides and food.
Hours: November. 4-13, 2016
Phone Number: (334) 793-4323

Each year the National Peanut Festival takes place in Dothan, Alabama.  This is similar in size to a state fair with livestock shows, concerts, venders, and of course rides!

The fair grounds are also home to a firework show held around the Fourth of July.

14. Joseph M. Farley Nuclear Plant
7388 North State Highway 95
Dothan, Alabama
43 miles from Fort Rucker
Cost: Free
Hours: 9:00 to 5:00 weekdays
Phone Number: 334-899-5108

Have you ever wondered what it's like inside a Nuclear Power Plant?  Well you can find out by touring this plant that is located east of Dothan.

15. Flying Pigs Petting Zoo
842 Silcox Road
Ashford, Alabama
33 miles from Fort Rucker
Cost: Prices vary, please call for details
Hours: Hours vary as well.
Phone Number: (334) 596-4943

This petting zoo is a fun place to hold a birthday party.  They will even travel to your event.

16. George T Bagby State Park and Lodge
330 Bagby Parkway
Fort Gaines, Georgia
57 miles from Fort Rucker
Cost: $5 parking.
Hours: Park Hours: 7:00 am to 10:00 pm every day
Phone Number: (877) 591-5575

Located on the southern end of Lake Eufaula, this state park is a great place for boating and fishing. The Lodge is a good place for conferences and weddings. It's also a great place to stay the night.  There are cabins and lodge rooms.

17. Kolomoki Mounds State Park
205 Indian Mounds Road
Blakely, Georgia
65 miles east of Fort Rucker
Hours: The park is open from 7:00 am to 10:00 pm. The Museum is open from 8:00 am to 5:00 pm.
Cost: $5 for parking and then Historic Site Admission is $5 for an adult, $3 for children from 6-17, and free for children under 6.
Phone Number: (229) 724-2150

This area was occupied by Native Americans from 350 to 750 AD. The park contains a 57 foot high temple mound as well as two smaller burial mounds. The museum is built over an excavation site. There are also hiking trails around the park.

18. Seminole State Park
7870 State Park Road
Donalsonville, Georgia
72 miles from Fort Rucker
Cost: $5 parking. Camping starts at $26.
Hours: 7 a.m.–10 p.m.
Phone Number: 229-861-3137

This state park is located on Lake Chattahoochee.  You can boat and fish on the water, swim near the beach, and camp on the land. Cabins are available as well as a tree house structure that sleeps up to 15 people.

19. Earle May Boat Basin and Cheney Griffin Park
100 Boat Basin Circle
Bainbridge, Georgia
79 miles from Fort Rucker
Cost: Free for most activities Camping is $14 per night
Hours: Daylight
Phone Number: 229-248-2010

This park on the Flint River is maintained by the city of Bainbridge.  The park has a river boardwalk, train museum, and a petting zoo.  You can boat, water sky, canoe, and even dive in the water.  There is even a first come first serve campground for $14 if you want to stay the night.

20. Gadsden Arts Center
13 North Madison Street
Quincy, Florida
101 miles from Fort Rucker
Cost: Suggested donation of $1. Children are free
Hours: 10:00 am to 5:00 pm Tuesday through Saturday
Phone Number: (850) 875-4866

This art museum was created to provide cultural opportunities and education for the community. There are several permanent as well as rotating exhibits.

More things outside the 100 mile zone:

Tallahassee is about 120 miles from Fort Rucker.  There are many interesting things to do there including visiting the State Capitol Building and Goodwood Museum and Gardens.

I also highly suggest you take a drive out to Albany Georgia.  It is 110 miles away, but Chehaw Park and Zoo is the most affordable zoo in the Wiregrass.  Read about my family's visit to that zoo by clicking here.

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