Tuesday, July 19, 2011


St. Charles
Sights & Sites
White River National Wildlife Refuge – 57 South CC Camp Road; 870-282-8200; fws.gov/whiteriver; 161K acre wildlife refuge located in Arkansas, Desha, Monroe & Phillips Counties; among best bird-watching areas in US.

Bentonville (includes Crystal Bridges)
Bakeries, Coffee, Ice Cream, Juice & Tea
Walmart Museum – 105 North Main Street; 479-273-1329; corporate.walmart.com/our-story/history/the-walmart-museum; ice cream parlour attached service excellent, home-made ice cream and treats.
Laughlin House Bed & Breakfast – 102 Northwest 3rd Street; 479-268-6085; laughlinhousebb.com; scenic, 15-minute walk from museum.
21C Museum Hotel – 200 Northeast A Street; 479-286-6500 or 855-535-0273; 21cmuseumhotels.com; modern.
Hive – 200 Northeast A Street (at 21C Museum Hotel); thehivebentonville.com; 21cmuseumhotels.com; refined country cooking (read pork belly & sorghum).
Eleven – 600 Museum Way; 479-418-5700; crystalbridges.org; fresh, local fare.
Table Mesa – 108 East Central Avenue, Suite 10; 479-715-6706; tablemesabistro.com; Latin fusion.
Tavola Trattoria – 108 Southeast A Street; 479-715-4738; tavolatrattoria.com; Italian.
Tusk & Trotter – 110 Southeast A Street; 479-268-4494; tuskandtrotter.com; try house-cured duck pastrami.
Sights & Sites
Crystal Bridges Museum – 600 Museum Way; 479-418-5700; crystalbridges.org; recessed in 120 acre park; botanical gardens and hiking trails around it; 20K' space; make sure to see Asher Durand’s Kindred Spirits, Richard Caton Woodville’s War News from Mexico, 1848, and James Turrell’s Way of Color (see at sunset).
Walmart Museum – 105 North Main Street; 479-273-1329; corporate.walmart.com/our-story/history/the-walmart-museum; Wal-Mart history depicted in warm, family environment.

Sights & Sites
Pea Ridge National Military Park – 15930 East Highway 62; 479-451-8122; nps.gov/peri; 4.K-acre park created to preserve civil war battlefield (1862 Battle of Pea Ridge; among best preserved Civil War battlefields; features visitors center & museum; driving tour, hiking trails & approximately 2.5 miles of Trail of Tears, as well as restored Elkhorn Tavern (battle epicenter).

Bakeries, Coffee, Ice Cream, Juice & Tea
Andy’s Frozen Custard – 2205 West Walnut Street; 479-636-2639; eatandys.com; old school & delicious.

Eureka Springs
1886 Crescent Hotel & Spa – 75 Prospect Avenue; 479-253-9766; crescent-hotel.com; luxury suites and cottages; known for being haunted.
Treehouse Cottages – 165 West Van Buren; 479-253-8667; treehousecottages.com.
Woods Treehouse Resort – 50 Wall Street; 479-253-8281; thewoodstreehouses.com.
Local Flavor Cafe – 71 South Main Street; 479-253-9522; localflavorcafe.net; new American cuisine plus wine & cocktails served in rustic setting with outdoor patio.
Mud Street Cafe – 22 South Main Street; 479-253-6732; mudstreetcafe.com; breakfast, lunch, and dinner; very popular.
Sights & Sites
Blue Spring Heritage Center – 1537 County Road 210; 479-253-9244; bluespringheritage.com; historic bluff shelter on National Register of Historic Places; gardens that demonstrate crops, plants, flowers & healing herbs.
Onyx Cave – 338 Onyx Cave Lane; 479-253-9321; onyxcaveeurekasprings.com.
Thorncrown Chapel – 12968 US Highway 62; 479-253-7401; thorncrown.com; designed by Frank Lloyd Wright protege, E. Fay Jones; towering, 48' glass & wood structure; 425 windows and more than 6K' square of glass; ranked 4th on AIA’s list of top 20th Century buildings.

Heber Springs
Red Apple Inn – 1000 Club Road; 501-362-3111 or 800-733-2775; redappleinn.com; nestled in Ozarks’ gently rolling foothills and surrounded by pristine Greers Ferry Lake; founded over 40 years ago with gracious country living ideal; early 16th Century wrought-iron gate, massive wooden doors, natural wood, native stone, and lush plantings to create quiet elegance; restaurant features fine dining with lovely views in several directions, overlooking lake, landscaped patio, or pleasantly shaded breezeway; just outside your door are forest trails and lake.

Sights & Sites
Petit Jean State Park – 1285 Petit Jean Mountain Road; 501-727-5441; petitjeanstatepark.com; state park in central Arkansas managed, located atop Petit Jean Mountain on Arkansas River between Ozark & Ouachita mountain ranges; Petit Jean legendary young 18th Century French woman who discovers her fiance plans to explore Louisiana Territory; cuts her hair, disguises herself as boy & finds position as cabin boy; when reaches mountain, becomes ill; on deathbed reveals herself to her fiance & is buried on mountain; Civilian Conservation Corps built cabins throughout park; 24-room historic lodge called Mather Lodge on bluff edge of deep, forested canyon; impressive 95' waterfall; 100-acre Lake Bailey; Bear Cave, Rock House Cave (rock art), Grotto, Turtle Rocks, Carpet Rocks & Natural Bridge.

Hot Springs (includes Mt. Ida)
Mountain Harbor Resort & Spa – 994 Mountain Harbor Road (Mt. Ida); 870-867-2191; mountainharborresort.com.
McClard’s – 505 Albert Pike; 501-623-9665; mcclards.com; perfecting barbecue arts since 1929; fries & ribs combo best.

Sights & Sites
Ron Coleman Mining – 211 Crystal Ridge Lane; 501-984-5396; colemanquartz.com; extensive premises boasting huge mine where you can mine own quartz (since 1943); gift shop full of decorative quartz & other minerals.

Sights & Sites
Millwood Lake State Park – 1564 Arkansas Highway 32 (take I-30 exit 18 (in Fulton), drive north on Red Lake Road for .22 miles, west on US Highway 67, drive .57 miles, then north on State Road 355, drive 12.2 miles to State Road 32, turn south and go 8.5 miles to park entrance); 870-898-2800; arkansasstateparks.com/millwood; 835 acres that are home to 325 bird species; habitat diversity includes cypress swamp, freshwater marsh, lowland bottom, upland hardwood, conifer, mixed forest, and interspersed meadow; “Waterfowl Way” is 1.5 mile hiking trail; “Wildlife Lane“ is 4 mile walk through mixed forest and lakeside ecosystem.

Paris (includes Dardanelle)
Lodge at Mount Magazine – 16878 Arkansas Highway 309; 479-963-8502; mountmagazinestatepark.com; 60 rooms & 13 cabins; breathtaking views & lovely accommodations.
Sights & Sites
Mount Magazine State Park – 16878 Arkansas Highway 309; 479-963-8502; mountmagazinestatepark.com; hiking, mountain climbing, geocaching; Arkansas’ highest peak; great bird-watching.

Queen Wilhelmina Lodge – 3877 Arkansas Highway 88; 800-264-2477; queenwilhelmina.com; in renovations now; scheduled to reopen 2015.
Sights & Sites
Queen Wilhelmina State Park – 3877 Arkansas Highway 88; 479-394-2863 or 800-264-2477; queenwilhelmina.com.

Pottsville (includes Dardanelle)
Sights & Sites
Holla Bend National Wildlife Refuge – 10448 Holla Bend Road (Dardanelle); 479-229-4300; fws.gov/refuges/profiles/index.cfm?id=43590; waterbirds and wintering Bald Eagles.

DeValls Bluff
Bakeries, Coffee, Ice Cream, Juice & Tea
Family Pie Shop – Highway 70 West; 870-998-2279; roadfood.com/Restaurant/Overview/316/family-pie-shop; annex to Thomas home, built out of former bicycle shed, now filled with baked goods; specializes in coconut, chocolate, egg custard & sweet potato pies, as well as crescent-shaped fried pies.

Little Rock
Bars & Nightclubs
Capital Bar – 111 West Markham Street (at Capital Hotel); 501-374-7474; capitalhotel.com; lively.
Crush Wine Bar – 318 Main Street; 501-374-9463; 100 different vintages; some cheese and cured meat plates.
Diamond Bear Brewing Co. – 323 South Cross Street, #C; 501-708-2739; diamondbear.com.
White Water Tavern – 2500 West 7th Street; 501-375-8400; whitewatertavern.com; live music.
Capital Hotel – 111 West Markham Street; 501-374-7474; capitalhotel.com; bar (Capital Bar & Grill) and 2 restaurants (same and Ashley’s); whole place oozes Southern charm.
Ashley’s – 111 West Markham Street (at Capital Hotel); 501-374-7474; capitalhotel.com; try soft-shell crabs.
Capital Bar & Grill – 111 West Markham Street (at Capital Hotel); 501-374-7474; capitalhotel.com.
Chicken Wang Cafe – 8320 Colonel Glenn Road; 501-562-1303; do NOT use cell phone at counter EVER; wings.
Juanita’s Café & Bar – 614 President Clinton Avenue; 501-372-1228; juanitas.com; per legend, “cheese dip” invented in Little Rock in 1930s; Mexican food.
Starving Artist Café – 411 Main Street; 501-372-7976; starvingartistcafe.net; Mediterranean-influenced dishes.
Whole Hog Cafe – 2516 Cantrell Road; 501-664-5025; wholehogcafe.com; barbecue; multiple other locations but this is main.
Galaxy – 304 Main Street; 501-375-3375; galaxyfurniture.net; mid-century, 2nd-hand furnishings.
Greg Thompson Fine Art – 429 Main Street; 501-664-2787; gregthompsonfineart.com; southern regionalist work.
Sights & Sites
Little Rock Central High School – 2125 Daisy L. Gatson Bates Drive; 501-374-1957; nps.gov/chsc; massive structure, combining Art Deco and Gothic Revival architectural styles; where 1st significant test of Brown v. Board of Education occurred.
Sequoyah National Research Center – 500 University Plaza, University of Arkansas at Little Rock, 2801 South University Drive; 501-569-8336; ualr.edu/sequoyah; largest assemblage Native American expression in world.

Sights & Sites
Pinnacle Mountain State Park – 11901 Pinnacle Valley Road; 501-868-5806; arkansasstateparks.com/pinnaclemountain; 2K acre park notable for birdwatching.

St. Joe
Sights & Sites
Buffalo National River (US National Park Service) – 170 Ranger Road; 870-439-2502; nps.gov/buff; narrow park anchored by 135-mile, bluff-lined river offering canoeing & camping along its shores; great bird-watching.

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