Allsopp Park

Here's what you can take to Allsopp Park: A ball and a bat, for practice at the softball field, where the Hillcrest Girls Softball League has played for eons. Hot dogs, to cook on the grills. String with bacon tied to it, to catch the crawdads in the creek. Marshmallows, Hershey's bars and graham crackers, to cook in the rock fireplace in the pavilion. Your tennis racket and a basketball (run those guys who play soccer tennis off). Bring your kids, too: There's a bouncy-surfaced playground with things to climb on and swing from. The creek has big rocks for stepping on and pools for the dog to cool off in. That's the developed part of this hilly, forested 150-acre retreat in the middle of Little Rock, where mountain bikers become airborne and the keen of a bagpipe sometimes fills the air, coming from the direction of a rock garden mysteriously built within the park. Named for the newspaperman and bookstore owner whose home, complete with a planetarium, once overlooked the park.

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