Fort Smith Travel Guide

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Fort Smith Travel Guide

Fort Smith Local History

Fort Smith, located on the Arkansas-Oklahoma border, was founded in 1817as a military outpost to protect the settlers from attacks by the native Americans. During the Civil War the fort was used by both the armies, but its claim to fame is "Hanging Judge" Parker who sent 79 men to the gallows. Until Isaac C. Parker took over, this rowdy pioneer town was a sanctuary for robbers and bandits. His marshals rounded up all the fugitives and in 21 years he sentenced 160 to death.

Fort Smith Attractions

Fort Smith Shopping

Downtown Shopping - Both sides of broad Garrison Avenue attracting at the shadow of the Oklahoma bridge east, to 13th Street, are home to several curio, antique, and arts and crafts shops. Some of the shops used to be taverns and other "businesses", which catered for travellers crossing the bridge to and from Oklahoma in earlier days. Here you will find bargains and treasures, from artefacts of 19th-century Fort Smith to more contemporary collectibles.

Fort Smith Activities

Grand Slam Fun Centre - 5300 South Zero Call Tel (479) 648 8805. Fort Smith's Grand Slam Fun Centre is the place to go for lots of family fun. Individuals or teams can participate in activities including miniature golf, go-carts, a driving range, and batting cages for baseball and softball. Catering services are available at an on-site pavilion and party room.

Fishing - The rivers surrounding Fort Smith are filled with many different kinds of native Arkansas fish, ranging from trout to large-mouth bass. For a peaceful family outing, explore the nearby lakes and reservoirs. Here you will find quiet inlets and bayous perfect for a quiet day of fishing and picnicking.

Old Fort Days Rodeo and Barrel-Racing Futurity - Fun, fun, fun for young and old alike. Rated as one of the best all-round rodeos in the country, Fort Smith's annual Old Fort Days Rodeo and Barrel-Racing Futurity offers nearly ten days of Wild West activities. Held each May since the mid-1930s, the PRCA Rodeo begins every Memorial Day with a long and colourful parade down Garrison Avenue. The nightly "Grand Entry" at Harper Stadium shouldn't be missed. Definitely worth a visit if you are in Town around May.

Fort Smith Parks & Gardens

Devil's Den State Park - 11333 West Arkansas Highway 74 West Fork Tel (479) 761 3325. This park is nestled in a picturesque valley in Arkansas's Ozark Mountains and is known for its natural beauty and lush hardwood forest. It was selected as a park site in the 1930s. The park's CCC Rustic-style buildings and other structures is crafted out of the native wood and stone of Lee Creek Valley. A peaceful 8 acre lake in the heart of the park is perfect for fishing and canoeing.
The lake is formed by the mountains stream which cascades over a rugged native stone dam that stretches across the creek. Hiking and backpacking trails in the areas of Devil's Den State Park and the surrounding Ozark National Forest, are enhanced by the beauty of the seasonal changes. Your spirits will be lifted!

Mount Magazine - 16878 Highway 309 South, Paris Tel (479) 963 8502. Arkansas's newest state park is located in the Ozark National Forest high on top of the state's tallest mountain, the 2,753 foot Mount Magazine. Mount Magazine offers vistas of broad river valleys, deep canyons and distant mountains.

The altitude, geography and climate combine to create unique habitats for rare plants and animals. The elevation makes the cool mountaintop is perfect place to relax on hot summer days. This park is a place where nature lovers can go biking and horseback riding, or where the adventurous can do rock climbing and hang-gliding.

Fort Smith Restaurants and Bars

Fort Smith Restaurants

Calico County Restaurant - 2401 South 56th Street Fort Smith Tel (479) 452 3299. For more than 19 years Calico County has been offering hearty portions of traditional American fare that is cooked from scratch and served in a nostalgic atmosphere. Their incredible complimentary cinnamon rolls are to die for.

Appetisers include fried cheese sticks, nachos and fried onion rings. Choices for an entree include country pork chops, Mother's Juicy Pot Roast, Effy May's Meatloaf and lots of other home cooked goodness. They also serve a hearty home cooked breakfast. Open from 6.30 am to 9 pm on Monday to Thursday, from 6.30 am to 10 pm Friday to Saturday and 7 am to 9 pm on Sundays.

Chili's Grill & Bar - 6720 Rogers Ave. Fort Smith. Fun, fresh and flavourful, that is the motto of Chili's. This is a great place to hang out with friends and family and enjoy a delicious meal. Chili's has a rare energy that you don't find a lots of other places. After you've perused the menu, you'll understand why food is the centrepiece of the Chili's experience.

They offer a distinct, fresh, healthy mix of grilled American favourites like their famous double-basted Baby Back Ribs, sizzling fajitas, Big Mouth Burgers, Margarita Presidente, grilled steaks, Boneless Buffalo Wings, South-western Egg rolls and a colossal hand-battered Awesome Blossom onion. This is the perfect place to drop by for a late night delight.

Fort Smith children's activities

Grand Slam Fun Centre - 5300 South Zero Call Tel (479) 648 8805. Fort Smith's Grand Slam Fun Centre is the place to go for lots of family fun. Individuals or teams can participate in activities including miniature golf, go-carts, a driving range, and batting cages for baseball and softball. Catering services are available at an on-site pavilion and party room.

Fishing - The rivers surrounding Fort Smith are filled with many different kinds of native Arkansas fish, ranging from trout to large-mouth bass. For a peaceful family outing, explore the nearby lakes and reservoirs. Here you will find quiet inlets and bayous perfect for a quiet day of fishing and picnicking.

Old Fort Days Rodeo and Barrel-Racing Futurity - Fun, fun, fun for young and old alike. Rated as one of the best all-round rodeos in the country, Fort Smith's annual Old Fort Days Rodeo and Barrel-Racing Futurity offers nearly ten days of Wild West activities. Held each May since the mid-1930s, the PRCA Rodeo begins every Memorial Day with a long and colourful parade down Garrison Avenue. The nightly "Grand Entry" at Harper Stadium shouldn't be missed. Definitely worth a visit if you are in Town around May.

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