Eureka Springs Attractions

Eureka Springs Things To Do & Attractions

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The Eureka Springs & North Arkansas Railway is a for-profit passenger tourist railway established by the late Robert Dortch, Jr. and his wife Mary Jane in 1981 in Eureka Springs, AR. The railway offers excursion tours, a catered luncheon train and a catered dinner train - each lasting a little less than one hour, from April through October.It operates along 2.5 miles (4.0 km) of restored track right-of-way formerly belonging to the defunct Arkansas & Ozarks Railway Co - the last incarnation of the North Arkansas Line
The original railway chartered at the site in 1882 was the Eureka Springs Railway, extending from Seligman MO, to Eureka Springs. In 1899, it became the St. Louis & North Arkansas Railroad Co.; in 1906, the Missouri & North Arkansas Railroad Co.; in 1922, the Missouri & North Arkansas Railway Co.; in 1935, the Missouri & Arkansas Railway Co.; in 1949, the Arkansas & Ozarks - which closed in 1961. In 2011, the ES&NA became the road name attached to this trackage for the longest period of time in its existence. At the height of the North Arkansas Line's career, it extended 360 miles (580 km) from Joplin MO to Helena, AR. Robert Dortch, Sr. had established the Scott and Bearskin Lake Railroad as part of the Plantation Agriculture Museum near Scott AR, in the 1960s and after his death in 1978, his son closed it and began moving steam locomotives, rolling stock and trackage to the Victorian tourist destination Eureka Springs. He and his wife, Mary Jane, and sons David, John, and Robert set about restoring the historic stone depot, and re-building several tresles over Leatherwood Creek on the pike. A steel water tank was added, as well as a few outbuildings and a commissary adjacent to the old ice house/electric plant building to prepare meals for the luncheon and dinner trains. A 20-hp turntable from the Frisco railroad was installed near the original location of one used by the North Arkansas Line; a wye at "Junction, Arkansas" enables the turning of a locomotive at the far end of the route
Turpentine Creek Wildlife Refuge is a 500-acre wildlife refuge for abused, abandoned, and neglected big cats. The Eureka Springs refuge houses 150 (or more) animals. It mainly specializes in tigers, but there are also lions, leopards, cougars, bobcats, a few bears, ligers, servals, a monkey, and a macaw. This refuge is a USDA licensed facility. The refuge is open every day of the year (except Christmas) from 9 a.m. until about 5 p.m. (winter) or 6 p.m (summer). Turpentine Creek depends on volunteers and donations
Onyx Cave is a small show cave located about six miles (9.6 km) east of Eureka Springs, AR. It has been a tourist attraction since 1893, making it the oldest show cave in Arkansas. The cave does not contain onyx, but a kind of flowstone called cave onyx which has a similar appearance. During the 19th century and the beginning of the 20th century many caves were named Onyx Cave, which makes it difficult to keep them apart. Tours are not guided but are given by headsets which receive short range FM transmissions from small boxes, which alert tourists to chambers and rock formations. Since the cave has only one public opening, visitors must exit the cave the way they entered. The cave stays at an average temperature of 57 degrees Fahrenheit (13.8 degrees Celsius) year round. Most of the cave is not toured. In 1969, some scenes from the B-Movie 'It's Alive' were filmed at Onyx Cave
Thorncrown Chapel is a chapel located in Eureka Springs AR – designed by E. Fay Jones and constructed in 1980. The design recalls Prairie School architecture – popularized by Frank Loyd Wright, with whom Jones had apprenticed. Jim Reed, a retired schoolteacher, commissioned the chapel. Interior Constructed mostly of wood and other materials indigenous to northwestern Arkansas, the design minimized material transportation costs. Though giving the impression of an open-air structure, the chapel is a glass-enclosed, conditioned space. The building was selected for the 2006 Twenty-Five Year Award by the American Institure of Architects, recognizing structures that have had significant influence on the profession. The chapel was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2000 Buildings less than fifty years old can only be listed on the Register if they are of exceptional significance. It should be on everybodys list of things to do.
The World's Largest Tuned Musical Windchime was erected by windchime artist, Ranaga Farbiarz, in the parking area of Celestial Windz Harmonic Bizaar, south of Eureka Springs AR on Thursday, November 4, 2004.
With the help of a bucket truck, a 100-foot (30 m) tall oak tree, his son David, and numerous friends, the chime was erected on site from prepared components in front of approximately 100 onlookers. The chime is dedicated to Ranaga's late father, Ignatz Farbiarz, a Holacost Survivor.      This truly is a work of art!
Christ of the Ozarks statue is a monumental sculpture of Jesus located near Eureka Springs Arkansas, atop Magnetic Mountain. It was erected in 1966 as a "Sacred Project" by Gerald L. K. Smith and stands 65.5 feet (20 meters) high. Smith briefly led the Share Our Wealth movement initiated by Huey P. Long during the Great Depression.
During the Great Depression, Smith served as an organizer for Huey P. Long's Share Our Wealth movement and led it briefly following Long's assassination in 1935. After many years of political activism, Gerald L. K. Smith retired to Eureka Springs, Arkansas, where he bought and renovated an old mansion. On other parts of the estate property, he planned a religious theme park, which he called "Sacred Projects". Although he never completed his plan, he commissioned the centerpiece, a gigantic statue of Jesus, completed in 1966. It is called "Christ of the Ozarks". He also completed a 4,100-seat amphitheater. This is the site of seasonal annual outdoor performances of “The Great Passion Play”, styled after that of Oberammergau, Germany. It is performed four or five nights a week from the end of April through the end of October.
The statue, which is more than 67 feet (20 meters) tall, was primarily the work of Emmet Sullivan, who also worked on nearby Dinosaur World. He had assisted in the work at Mount Rushmore. The statue is modernistic and minimalistic; there is little facial detail or expression, and the lines and forms are generally simplified. The arms are outstretched straight, suggesting the Crucifixion; however the cross is not overtly depicted.
The Crescent Hotel is a historic hotel in Eureka Springs Arkansas. Built in 1886, it is reported to be haunted. The hotel keeps a Welte Philharmonic Organ from 1912.
History: Perched on the crest of West Mountain above the Victorian village of Eureka Springs AR is the historic 1886 Crescent Hotel & Spa. The 78-room resort hotel is not only known as one of America’s most distinctive and historic destinations, but it is also renowned for a bevy of spirits that are said to continue to walk upon these palatial grounds.
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The Basin Park Hotel This hotel is in the Victorian historic district in downtown Eureka, listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The hotel is next to cold water Basin Springs, which was the heart of the health resort community 100 years ago. Basin Park Hotel is built into the side of a mountain. All eight levels of the hotel are at "Ground Level." This unique feature earned a place on "Ripley's Believe It of Not" list. The mountainside building is constructed of white limestone and pink dolomite rock walls.
The Palace Hotel & Bathhouse-1901  Grand Opening -- 1901 1940s Neon Sign added George T. Williams bought the hotel lots for $500.00 in 1900, and built the Palace for $1,000.00, --- and then, sold the completed facility in May of 1901 for $2,500.00 -- and made a profit ! He hired Irish stonemason immigrants who besides building the PALACE, had also been hired to construct the CRESCENT and the rest of the limestone structures including the hundreds of miles of retaining walls seen throughout Eureka Springs. The limestone was quarried just a few miles from town.
Passion Play This drama depicts the last week of Christ’s life on earth portrayed by a dramatic cast and live animals, and performed in a 4,100-seat outdoor amphitheater.

 Eureka Springs is well known for its art, shopping, hotels, restaurants and attractions.

Attractions

Hotels

Eureka Springs Shopping

Shopping in Eureka Springs is an extraordinary shopping experience. The downtown area is where the most shops are at. Winding mountain streets lined with Victorian era storefronts feature a very eclectic variety of storefronts. Shopping is an experience that you will never forget in Eureka Springs.  No shopping mall has this kind of variety or selection. Eureka Springs' is a shopping destination carrying unique,one of a kind, and even locally made items. Eureka Springs is known all over the world for its clothes, jewelry, fine art, and gourmet food. Eureka Springs consistently ranks in the top 25 small cities for art. The entire town of Eureka Springs is on the National Register of Historic Places. It is also known as Little Switzerland. There are numerous restaurants and cafes when you need a break from the shopping (many with patio seating so you can enjoy the scenery while you eat).