Fayetteville Arkansas, University of Arkansas--Old Main Overview

Fayetteville Arkansas, University of Arkansas--Old Main Overview
Overview of Fayetteville, AR

Thursday, May 24, 2012

There is something happening all the time in NW Arkansas. It’s no wonder our corner of the Ozarks is known for its high quality of life. Many of the offerings are free or low cost.

Tonight, for example, is the first of a 6-concert chamber music series sponsored by the university and KUAF, the local public radio station. Like all of the concerts in the series, it is free and starts at 7:30. Tonite’s concert is at the Stella Boyle Smith Concert Hall at the University, as are all of the concerts except next week, when it is at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church on Dickson St. For a glimpse on works to be played and map on how to get to the concerts, click here.

Here’s a brief rundown of some other upcoming events so you won’t miss anything:

The First Friday of every month through November, beautiful Bentonville Square has activities for the whole family. June 1st and 2nd will be a two-day affair in conjunction with ArtFest (see below). July 6th and 7th will feature arts and music – both Blues and Rock. August will celebrate back-to-school time with toys and a meet-and-greet session with teachers.

Bentonville is hosting Artfest during the month of June. It starts May 31 with Art Fete at Peel Mansion. Activities continue through June 30 with music, food, art presentations and a film festival.

No mention of Bentonville would be complete without a nod to Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art. Open every day except Tuesdays, the museum is a must see. One exhibit costs $5; all the other galleries are free. Beautiful trails surround outstanding architecture.

Fayetteville’s Artosphere has many unique events throughout May and June at a wide variety of locations, including Crystal Bridges Museum in Bentonville. There will be six days of chamber music concerts in renowned chapels such as Thornecrown Chapel in Eureka Springs and Cooper Chapel in Bella Vista. Dates are June 14th to 21st. The Artosphere Festival Orchestra will perform classical works June 17th, 18th and 22st at various NW Arkansas venues. Some concerts are free and prices for others will be $10-$25.

August 23rd to 26th will be four days of music and food by the Fayetteville Roots Festival. Their slogan is “A mountain town in its natural state” and it promises to be a great time in the Ozarks. Walton Arts Center will be the main stage with happenings all around Fayetteville.

Outdoor musical presentations will continue throughout the summer at Arkansas Music Pavilion (“The AMP”) in Fayetteville. Be sure to note a temporary change of location this year. While awaiting completion of the new pavilion at NW Arkansas Mall, the venue is Washington County Fairgrounds. There is a great lineup of artists including Ted Nugent, Luke Bryant, Gavin DeGraw and Pat Benatar.

Downtown Fayetteville welcomes everyone to the town square on the First Thursday of each month, except in the winter. The square becomes a vibrant scene celebrating art, artists, music and fun for all members of the family. Best part, it’s all free.

And finally, the Gulley Park Summer Concert series begins May 31 with free entertainment, as always. The presentations are extremely popular family fun. Bring your lawn chairs and blankets.

There's probably more that I haven't thought of, but this will give you a start. Have a happy, safe , and fun summer.

Monday, May 07, 2012

Siloam Springs, Arkansas – Another Great Place to Live in NW Arkansas

I came across an article recently in the online version of Smithsonian Magazine that I wanted to share.

According to the article, Siloam Springs, Arkansas, was rated #14 on Smithsonian’s list of the top 20 small towns in America. That’s a pretty good rating on any scale. I’ve written previously about excellent rankings for cities in NW Arkansas, but this may be the first for Siloam Springs.

Geographically, it is a small town at only about 10 square miles, situated on the border with Oklahoma. Population growth has been dramatic, increasing more than 500% since the 2000 census.

The town has churches everywhere. A creek runs through it, and it appropriately got its name from the many springs in the area. Siloam Springs has been recognized by the Arkansas Historic Preservation Program for efforts to preserve and revitalize the city's historic district.

The town hosts parades, a rodeo and festivals, notably the annual Dogwood Festival, and fireworks on Fourth of July. The aquatic park is outstanding. A brand new hospital just opened.

John Brown University draws students from around the country and overseas. Each December the university presents Candlelight Christmas Concerts which are simply beautiful. Tickets go very quickly.

Considering the quality of life enjoyed by its citizens, it seems to exemplify small town life in America. And it's not far from Fayetteville (University of Arkansas) and Bentonville (Crystal Bridges), and other amenities and business venues of NW Arkansas.

Congratulations Siloam Springs.

Tuesday, May 01, 2012

Will Our Butterfield Trail Be a National Historic Trail?

Just imagine – St. Louis, Missouri to San Francisco, California in only 25 days. It may sound like a trip you hope never to make, yet the Butterfield Overland Trail was highly rated back in 1858. It changed both transportation and commerce.

Moving people and U.S. mail was an amazing undertaking back then. The need was great and. John Butterfield, Sr. and his Butterfield Overland Stage Company proved it could be done. The route started in St. Louis and passed through Benton, Washington, Crawford and Sebastian Counties in Arkansas. At Ft. Smith, Arkansas it turned southwest through Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, and onward to Los Angeles, California where it turned north to San Francisco.

Mr. Butterfield lived for a time in Fayetteville and built major stables for the company in Fayetteville. Remnants of the original Butterfield Trail are adjacent to the 8th hole at Butterfield Trail Golf Course in Texas. I know of one roadside marker in Springdale commemorating the Butterfield Trail and it is located appropriately on the corner of Butterfield Coach Road and US Hwy. 412. And there is a well in the back yard of a residence in Fayetteville where supposedly where the stagecoach used to stop for refreshment  (I used to live across the street).

Now the National Park Service is studying whether to include the route as a National Historic Trail. It certainly qualifies in my mind.

If you care to comment on the subject, you may do so by May 18, 2012 by contacting:
Gretchen Ward
Outdoor Recreation Planner
National Park Service
National Trails Intermountain Region
P.O. Box 728
Santa Fe, NM 87504

If you prefer, you may comment online at the National Park Service Public Comment and Planning website.

For more information:

National Park Service Information on Butterfield Trail
Butterfield Trail Golf Course in Texas