By Sarah Naron

Messenger Reporter

EAST TEXAS – With Spring Break fast approaching, many families are looking for activities to create fun family memories. For those looking to stay close to home and have a good time without breaking the bank, the East Texas area offers a number of attractions sure to delight both the young and the young at heart.

For those looking to kick of springtime with wet and wild fun, the Splash Kingdom Timber Falls in Nacogdoches – just over an hour drive from Grapeland – is sure to be a hit. Featuring a lazy river, body slides, a sand volleyball court and a special tree house area for young children, the park offers something for everyone.

Concessions such as hamburgers, chicken tenders, funnel cakes and pretzels are available for purchase in the park. Refillable souvenir cups may be purchased for $10 apiece with refills costing $1 each.

General admission tickets to be used at the Nacogdoches location are $18.95, while tickets valid at any Splash Kingdom location may be purchased for $27.95. Individuals shorter than 3.5 feet tall, senior citizens ages 65 and over and those who present a valid military ID will be charged $15.95 per ticket. Twilight admission is available daily after 4 p.m. for a cost of $10 per ticket. A Family 4 Pack consisting of four tickets and four meal vouchers is available for $89. Children age two and under will be allowed in free of charge. Tax will be added to all prices.

Lockers are available for rent at a cost of $6 each, plus a $5 deposit to be refunded at the time the locker key is returned.

Splash Kingdom Timber Falls is located at 401 N. University Dr. in Nacogdoches.

For more information, visit www.splashkingdomwaterpark.com or call 936-305-5009.

Animal lovers are sure to enjoy a day spent at Ellen Trout Zoo in Lufkin. An approximately 53-mile trip from Grapeland, the zoo allows visitors to get an up-close look at wildlife such as saki monkeys, a white rhinoceros, American alligators and cotton-top tamarins.

The adjacent Ellen Trout Park also offers a 1.1-mile walking trail surrounding the lake, as well as a train which takes visitors on a ride through the surrounding vegetation. Playgrounds and space for outdoor lunches are available. Concessions are sold within the zoo.

Admission is $7 for adults and $6 for senior citizens age 60 and older. Children ranging in age from 4-11 will be admitted for $3.50, while children younger than four years old are free. For organized groups consisting of 15 or more adults, tickets are $3.50 per adult and $1.75 per child.

For more information, call 936-633-0399.

Ellen Trout Zoo is located at 402 Zoo Circle in Lufkin and is open daily from 9 a.m.-5 p.m.

For the sporty family which enjoys a little friendly competition, the Palestine Bowling Center is a great option for spring break fun.

Open Monday-Thursday from 4-10 p.m., Friday-Saturday from 4 p.m.-12 a.m. and Sunday from 1-6 p.m., the facility offers games at a daily rate of $3.20 per person and an evening rate of $4.30 per person after 6 p.m. Extra frames may be purchased for 45 cents apiece. Bowling shoes are $2.70 per adult pair and $2.20 per pair for children age 12 and under.

Lanes may be rented throughout the day Tuesday and Sunday for an hourly price of $18 per lane. Lane rentals are $24 per hour per lane after 6 p.m. Monday and Wednesday-Saturday.

For more information, visit www.palestinebowl.com or call 903-723-0888.

Sarah Naron may be reached via email at snaron@messenger-news.com.