Celebrating Arkansas - Segment 1
The National Chuckwagon Races (NCCR), Bar O-F Ranch, Clinton, Ark. - The largest wagon races in the world are held here every Labor Day. Chuckwagons pulled by horse and mule tear across the mountain valley, and cowboys try their hand at riding a bucking bronco. The NCCR includes a cross country horse race, the "Snowy River" race. Divisions include ponies and miniature chuckwagons, pony mules, buckboard wagons, big mules and classic chuckwagons. Campers can stay at the Bar O-F Ranch for the weekend. The NCCR also includes trail rides, a rodeo, a barn dance and more. For more information, visit http://www.chuckwagonraces.com/ or call the Bar O-F Ranch or Feed Store at (501) 745-5240 or (501) 745-8407.
Arkansas Folk Festival (AFF), Mountain View, Ark. - Held each spring since 1963, the AFF celebrates traditional music and crafts of the Ozarks. Musicians gather around the Stone County Courthouse Square to play mountain music, bluegrass and old country and gospel favorites on fiddle, banjo, dobro and mandolin. Shuttle buses run from the courthouse square to the Ozark Folk Center, which is open free to the public during the festival. Visitors can watch as potters, blacksmiths, basket weavers and other artisans create and sell their crafts. Contact the Ozark Folk Center at (870) 269-2851 or search their Website at http://www.ozarkfolkcenter.com/. Viewers are also encourage to contact the Mountain View Chamber of Commerce at (870) 269-8068 or link to their Website at http://www.mountainviewcc.org/.
Championship Cardboard Boat Races (CCBR), Heber Springs, Ark. - Each summer, Sandy Beach, near Heber Springs, hosts the Championship Cardboard Boat Races. Contestants create boats from cardboard, tape, glue and paint. The CCBR includes races for children, adults, teams and corporate entries. Participants and spectators eagerly await the anouncement of the winner of the "Pride of the Fleet" for best boat and the "Titanic Award" for best sinking. Contact the Heber Springs Chamber of Commerce at (800) 774-3237 or visit http://www.heber-springs.com/.
War Eagle Fair (WEF), War Eagle Farm - War Eagle Fair is held on two weekends a year, one in spring and one in fall. The fair has been held every year since 1954 and is one of the largest craft fairs in the United States. In addition to the fair, the non-profit Ozark Arts and Crafts Fair Association offers craft seminars. Two smaller craft fairs are held across the river at War Eagle Mill. Other craft fairs are held the same weekend, making the Northwest region of Arkansas a shoppers mecca. For information on WEF and other fairs held the same weekend, contact the following:
War Eagle Fair
Shirley Sutton, Executive Director, (501) 789-5398 between 9 a.m. & 5 p.m. except Sundays and holidays, or visit http://www.wareaglefair.com/
War Eagle Mill
Call (501) 789-5343 or visit http://www.wareaglemill.com/
For information on other area fairs and lodging, contact local Chambers
Bella Vista-Bentonville - 501-273-2841
Eureka Springs - (501) 253-8737
Fayetteville - (501) 521-1710
Rogers - (501) 636-1240
Springdale - (501) 872-2222
Toad Suck Daze, Conway, Ark. - Held in downtown Conway each spring, Toad Suck Daze is a family oriented festival with fun for all. In addition to toad races, there are many more events, including golf tournaments and a 10K run. Contact the Conway Chamber of Commerce at (501) 327-7799 or visit http://www.toadsuck.org/.
International Greek Food Festival, Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church, Little Rock, Ark. - It started as a bake sale to raise money for the Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church and now it's one of the largest food festivals in Arkansas. Roast lamb, Gyros, Baklava and other delicious pastries will tempt your tastebuds. Go to http://www.greekfoodfest.com/ for more information on the festival and the church.
Buffalo River Elk Festival (BREF), Jasper, Ark. - One of Arkansas' newest festivals, the BREF celebrates the return of elk to North Arkansas. It was founded when the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission (AGFC) began allowing limited elk hunting in the region. AGFC holds the elk hunt permit drawings downtown and offers visitors information about the elk program, hunting, the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation and other agency projects. The BREF is held on the Newton County Courthouse Square and offers activities for everyone, even those not interested in elk. For more information, visit http://www.arkansaselk.com/ or http://www.agfc.state.ar.us/.
Visions of the Past Living History Fair, Parkin Archeological State Park, Parkin Ark. - Parkin Archeological State Park is an Arkansas Archeological Survey research center. The park's mission is to research, preserve and interpret the Native American Mound site, as well as, more recent occupation of the area. A celebration of Arkansas history and culture is held at Parkin each year. The festival theme rotates each year, among a list of topics that focus on a different era of eastern Arkansas history, including the 16th century; Arkansas Territorial Days; the Civil War era; and the 20th century. During this festival, living history re-enactors bring the pages of Arkansas' past to life. Call (870) 755-2500 for information about the fair and visits to the park or visit the following Web sites: http://www.arkansas.com/.
Timberfest, Sheridan, Ark. - Timberfest, home of the Arkansas State Lumberjack Championships, celebrates the timber industry of Arkansas. Watch as competitors battle it out with axe and chainsaw, seeing who can cut wood the fastest. There are several different chainsaw divisions, including super-modified chainsaws - saws made with motorcycle engines! It's ear splitting good fun! For more information, call the Sheridan Chamber of Commerce at (870) 942-3021.