Experience Fort Smith

Welcome to Fort Smith, Arkansas — Star of the Western Frontier — where you can relive America’s frontier heritage, explore a remarkably scenic landscape, and discover an unexpectedurban contemporary art scene. 

LIVING HISTORY

Start your experience at Miss Laura’s Visitor Center! A prominent symbol of our boisterous past, this former Old West bordello — first to be listed on the National Register of Historic Places—has been fully restored to its original grandeur, and a team of friendly volunteers offer free guided tours 7 days per week. At neighboring Fort Smith National Historic Site you can stand where Deputy U.S. Marshals brought infamous outlaws to justice, tour Judge Isaac C. Parker’s court, walk along a paved portion of the Trail of Tears and more. Nearby, Belle Grove Historic District offers a walkable gallery of 130 years of architecture, and Fort Smith Museum of History preserves 40,000 artifacts chronicling the city’s past. Across town at Chaffee Crossing, you can even visit the military barbershop where Elvis’ received the G.I. buzz cut that made international headlines as, “the haircut heard ‘round the world.” You can also start making plans to be here for the grand opening of the highly-anticipated U.S. Marshals Museum in late 2019! 

OUTDOOR RECREATION

Cradled by the majesty of the Ozarks and Ouachitas, Fort Smith hugs the banks of the mightyArkansas River and offers great access to outdoor amenities located directly in the city and nearby. Fort Smith Bikeway connects cyclists to popular points-of-interest, Ben Geren Park boasts 5 paved miles of cycling/jogging trails (ADA accessible through mile 1) and 12+ miles of rugged mountain biking/hiking trails, the new Riverfront Skate & Bike Park features a 12,000 sq. ft. complex for all skill levels, and Fort Smith Park offers boat access to the Arkansas River. Thecity is also in close proximity to Arkansas Wine Country, Lake Fort Smith State Park, Devil’s Den, Mount Magazine and more. In short, Fort Smith makes a great base camp for anyone wanting to explore the best The Natural State has to offer. 

ARTS & CULTURE

Fort Smith’s cultural landscape has a lot of offer visitors, as well! The award-winning Fort Smith Symphony performs consistently sold-out concerts and Fort Smith Little Theatre has entertained audiences for more than 70 years. Events like Riverfront Blues Festival, Peacemaker Music & Arts Festival, and The Steel Horse Rally bring diverse cultural, musical and artistic experiences to the city. And since 2015 — thanks to The Unexpected project — a growing collection of public art by world-renowned artists has transformed downtown Fort Smith into an international urban and contemporary art mecca. 

Start planning your trip at ExperienceFortSmith.com and discover what life is like where the New South meets the Star of the Western Frontier!