23 Things To Do In Russellville AR

The population of Russellville, the county seat and largest city in Pope County, Arkansas, is expected to be 29,338 in 2021. Arkansas Tech University is located there. The neighboring Arkansas Nuclear One nuclear power plant is the only one in Arkansas. The Arkansas River and Lake Dardanelle are both bordered by Russellville.

The Cherokee Indians lived a large portion of the land there before it was established in the early 1830s. It eventually became a portion of the Cherokee reservation, where Native Americans from Arkansas and Missouri were compelled to live.

Outdoor activities are a big part of recreation in the area; Lake Dardanelle, which is close by, is the biggest magnet for tourists in the area.

List of things to do in Russellville AR

Here is the list of things to do in Russellville AR during a visit such as Lake Dardanelle State Park, Nebo state park, Bona Dea Trails & Sanctuary, Washburn Park, and many more.

1. Lake Dardanelle State Park

Lake Dardanelle State Park Russellville AR

The most popular place for outdoor enjoyment in the Russellville AR area is Lake Dardanelle, State Park. There are a variety of activities offered, so there is something for everyone.

It’s a good idea to visit the visitor center before exploring the area because you’ll get a thorough rundown of all there is to offer and an understanding of how the park is organized as well. Maps, interactive displays, and some amazing tanks featuring some of the fish presents in the lake’s waters are all included in the tourist center.

One of the lake’s main attractions is a fishing pier, but whether you live nearby or are simply visiting, you must have a license.

2. Bona Dea Trails & Sanctuary

Bona Dea Trails & Sanctuary Russellville AR

The Latin phrase “Bona Dea” means “Good Deity,” and it certainly seems as though a goddess has graced this location.

A 186-acre refuge of wetlands and lowland woodland with cypress, water oak, and wildflowers, Bona Dea Trails & Sanctuary is situated on Lake Front Drive and provides a perfect habitat for a variety of wildlife.

The six-mile route is broken up into four sections: the 1.5-mile Prairie Creek, 2.6-mile Walden Way, and the 3.5-mile Serendipity Trail, which leads to a flood plain. The first segment, Rabbit Run, is one-mile long. Observe birds searching for food in the shallow waters of Prairie Creek and turtles relaxing in the open.

While a parcourse with 18 fitness stations may be found throughout the trail system, the concrete roads are perfect for bicycling and running.By strolling the Bona Dea Trails & Sanctuary, you may connect with nature while attaining your fitness objectives.

3. Ozark St. Francis National Forest

Ozark St. Francis National Forest Russellville AR

Arkansas truly lives up to its title, The Natural State, with its vast open spaces, breathtaking mountains, and largely unexplored expanses of woodland.

Numerous campsites in the Ozark St. Francis National Forest offer access to contemporary restrooms and even hot showers, which is uncommon in the world of camping.

The hookups for water and electricity are also great for RV enthusiasts. You can engage in a variety of outdoor-related activities depending on the time of year you visit. Before leaving, search online for relevant information.

4. Washburn Park

Washburn Park Russellville AR

Washburn Park is present on Lake Front Drive, just a short distance from the Bona Dea Trails. It was given that name in honor of Reverend Cephas Washburn, an Arkansas-based Cherokee educator, and Christian missionary.

In addition to a playground and picnic areas including picnic tables and picnic shelters with views of Lake Dardanelle, the park features a grilling area and a lighted pavilion.Admire the rock formations while scaling the cliffs.

You can access the lake by using the Ouita Boat Launch, which is located across the street from the park.  Washburn Park is a great place to rest and stroll.

5. Pope County Farmers Market

Pope County Farmers Market Russellville AR

Local farmers can sell their goods at the Pope County Farmers Market, which is situated in the historic Downtown Russellville Depot. The market takes pride in offering only products from farms located within 50 miles of the city.

Find locally produced goods that you can buy as keepsakes, such as fresh meats, baked goods, and raw honey. Turnip greens, peas, potatoes, squash, cabbage, and cucumbers are some additional locally produced foods.

By purchasing your food at the Pope County Farmers Market, you can help out the neighborhood farmers.

6. Arkansas Tech Museum

Arkansas Tech Museum Russellville AR

The campus of Arkansas Tech University is where the museum is situated in Russellville AR on North El Paso Road. It is a fantastic location to visit when you are around.

College campuses are typically full of stunning structures, green spaces, and walking trails. They also frequently hold a variety of fascinating events, many of which are free.

Tens of thousands of historical and scientific artifacts make up the numerous permanent collections of the Arkansas Tech Museum. The campus museum is open to visitors free of charge, and the university just celebrated its 100th birthday.

7. Dog Ear Books

Dog Ear Books Russellville AR

Dog Ear Books has what you need if you want to unwind with a book in the park on a lazy afternoon. There is a large selection of new and secondhand books for all age groups at this locally owned bookstore in Downton Russellville.

Given that children’s books make up half of the inventory, youngsters will particularly like this location. Pick up some tees, stuffed animals, candles, bobbleheads, manga, and anime novels. For the entire family’s enjoyment, board games, cards, and box sets are also offered. Open mic evenings, book club gatherings, and book readings are occasionally held at the store.

You can read your newly acquired book in the shop’s cozy small reading nook while sipping coffee from the cafe next door. Check out Dog Ear Books to free your inner bookworm.

8. Historic Missouri-Pacific Railroad Depot

Historic Missouri-Pacific Railroad Depot Russellville AR

The railroads were crucial to the development of the region around Russellville AR. Since Arkansas is a significant mining and agricultural state, cotton and lumber made up the majority of the cargo that trains hauled out.

Built in 1916, the Missouri-Pacific Railroad Depot in Russellville AR served as a staging facility for freight cars headed for all parts of the emerging nation.

Since 2004, a tourist center and train museum have been housed in the depot structures. There is no better location in the state to gain a special understanding of how the railroads assisted the area’s development.

Restored railroad artifacts from the MoPac’s era of operation are displayed in the building. The Main St Russellville offices are located in the Missouri-Pacific Depot, which can be rented for both public and private events.

9. Retro Roasts

Retro Roasts Russellville AR

Retro Roasts is a neighborhood coffee shop that incorporates local history into its operations. It is located on North Commerce Avenue.

The cafe, which was established by Emily Young, also has a location on West Main Street. To get their green beans for their coffee roasts, Emily and her wife Nikkila have teamed with Café Imports.

The cafe is adamant about exclusively sourcing fair trade, organic beans from a limited few nations, like Colombia and Guatemala. For a quick afternoon snack, try their White Mocha Latte and a slice of apple scone.

Additionally, they provide entire beans in retro-style tin cans that are ideal for home brewing.Grab the Nuclear Roast, which will wake you up in the morning, or the Russell Roast, which has nutty almond flavors and strong citrus acidity. Visit Retro Roasts to sip on some excellent coffee.

10. Museum of Automobiles

Museum of Automobiles Russellville AR

One of the odd and interesting things to do while in the area is the Museum of Automobiles in nearby Morrilton, which shouldn’t be missed.

Even if you aren’t a fan of automobiles, a visit to the museum is nevertheless noteworthy due to its picturesque setting on Petit Jean Mountain and intriguing past.

The building was first constructed in the 1960s by a wealthy Rockefeller who wanted a top-notch facility to hold his extensive collection of rare automobiles, which included over 30 vehicles.

Now, the museum also showcases certain firearms, musical instruments, and vintage registration plates in addition to automobiles.

11. The Old Bank Sports Grill

The Old Bank Sports Grill Russellville AR

Russellville’s Historic Downtown, on West Main Street, is where you’ll find The Old Bank Sports Grill. The Russellville Bank was one of the victims of a fire in 1906; all that was left was its vault.

Since then, the structure has been transformed into a pub that will satisfy your appetite for food and sports.Even when on vacation, you won’t miss a game because the pub has over 80 TVs.

The Stanley Cup Burger and the Razorback Burger, named after the Arkansas Razorbacks, are just two examples of meals on their menu that include sports references.If you’re not a great sports fan, there are live bands and karaoke nights, but the overall joyful vibe in the bar is likely to please both fans and non-fans.  Dine at The Old Bank Sports Grill inside a heritage place.

12. Petit Jean State Park

Petit Jean State Park Russellville AR

One of the area’s top attractions is Petit Jean State Park, which is southeast of Russellville AR, and one of Arkansas’s most beautiful and natural parks.

The park draws hikers, mountain bikers, and birdwatchers with its more than 21 kilometers of paths. You’ll feel as though you’re a million miles away from civilization given that it is only 45 minutes from the metropolis.

This was the first state park in Arkansas and features rivers and streams, waterfalls, lakes, and mountains in addition to a large number of interesting forested regions. Before entering the park, think about stopping at the visitor center to acquire your bearings.

13. Feltner’s Whatta-Burger

Feltner’s Whatta-Burger Russellville AR

Feltner’s Whatta-Burger, a Russellville landmark that serves handmade burgers and delicious shakes, was established in 1967 by Bob Feltner. The family-run diner’s original takeout corner has now been expanded to make room for dine-in customers.

The retro restaurant Feltner’s Whatta-Burger on North Arkansas Avenue will take you back to the 1960s.This member of the Arkansas Food Hall of Fame is still serving traditional favorites including the Whatta-Burger, which is served on buns produced in the area, and the homemade Strawberry Milkshake.

They are renowned for serving significant portions of fries and fried pies. Get your hands on some of the state’s best burgers by visiting this neighborhood staple.

14. Subiaco Abbey

Subiaco Abbey Russellville AR

The Subiaco Abbey was founded in the 1870s and served as a Benedictine monastery for much of its life. Today, however, it serves as a Catholic Benedictine prep school for boys.

The grounds of schools are open for visits, and because they are so scenic, so you can take some interesting pics.

Many of the school’s buildings have excellent architecture, and the grounds are well-kept. Since it’s aneffective school, you should check its website to ascertain the best times to go. Southwest of Russellville, on Arkansas scenic Highway 22, is where you’ll find the school.

15. Piney Bay Recreation Area

Piney Bay Recreation Area Russellville AR

Another well-liked location near Lake Dardanelle is Piney Bay Recreation Area. Boaters, anglers, and swimmers have easy access to the recreation area despite the lake’s surroundings being primarily hilly and forested. Here, you’ll discover restrooms, camping spots, and a playground for kids.

It’s a wonderful spot to spend an afternoon outdoors with the whole family. If you go to the park during one of the park’s scheduled events in its amphitheater throughout the summer, you might catch some live entertainment.

16. Stoby’s Restaurant

Stoby’s Restaurant Russellville AR

Stoby’s Restaurant, which is on West Parkway Drive, has promoted comfort food since 1980. When it originally started operating, Mrs. Smith’s Pie Shop and David Stobaugh were sharing a rental location in Conway.

When the proprietor Mrs. Florence Smith chose to choose a different path, David initially sold sandwiches and bought the pie shop’s equipment. The recipes for the Italian Crème Cake, Strawberry Cake, and Peanut Butter Pie are attributed to her after she eventually joined the Stoby’s crew.

In 1984, toby’s Restaurant opened a location in Russellville that was themed after a railway car, taking influence from the city’s train station. Start your day off well with a substantial breakfast and one of their sandwiches created with the bread of your choice, or try their homemade sausage served with biscuits.

The 100% cheese dip, which is available in two flavors—original yellow or spicy white—is their most well-known offering. Possum Pie is the perfect way to finish off your dinner.

17. Fat Daddy’s Bar-B-Que

Fat Daddy’s Bar-B-Que Russellville AR

The southeastern part of the country is known as “BBQ country,” and Arkansas is home to its distinctive brand of delicious dishes.

In 2006, the first branch of Russellville’s Fat Daddy’s Bar-B-Que was established in the neighboring town of London, Arkansas. Since then, they have expanded as word has spread about the great food they offer in a pleasant setting for affordable prices.

Although the restaurant’s several BBQ options are undoubtedly its highlights, they also offer burritos, burgers, and salads if you’re in the mood for something else. They are located near Russellville’s center on North Denver Street.

18. Mount Nebo State Park

Mount Nebo State Park Russellville AR

Another stunning natural landmark in Russellville is Mount Nebo. Whitetail deer can regularly be spotted grazing close to the playground of the park. Visit in the early morning or late afternoon if you want to see these beautiful critters.

The park provides beautiful views of the surrounding area that you won’t find anywhere else because of its mountain location. If you want to spend a night or two close to nature, you can rent cabins and campsites.

Try hang gliding and soar above the Petit Jean River Valley and Arkansas River Valley for a new perspective that will get your heart pumping. Sunrise Point near the mountain’s eastern end and a space behind the visitor center are the park’s two launch locations.

Don’t worry if you don’t have a pilot’s license; the park offers alternative activities like 14-mile hiking trails and mountain biking trails. There are 15 cabins in Mount Nebo State Park, 12 of which are situated along the cliff with breathtaking views of the Arkansas river valley.

19. Russellville Aquatic Center

Russellville Aquatic Center Russellville AR

The city of Russellville has constructed an aquatic center for its residents and visitors, similar to many other cities and towns around the country.

Aquatic facilities offer a variety of activities, from swimming laps and playing on slides to splashing around in wave pools and splash pads, for people of all ages and fitness levels. The Russellville Aquatic Center does not include a wave pool, but it does have excellent swimming facilities that may be used by anyone.

The aquatic facility provides educational and instructional courses throughout the year in addition to its physical facilities. Visitor short-term passes are offered.

20. Potts Inn Museum

Potts Inn Museum Russellville AR

The Potts Inn Museum, a former stagecoachinn in Pottsville, 10 minutes from Russellville, was built in 1858 by Kirkbride Potts. The stagecoach was built in the style of antebellum architecture and served the Butterfield Overland Mail Route.

Up until the 1970s, when the Potts family sold the property to its current owners, the Pope County Historical Foundation, they resided here. The two-story building has been restored, and the antique decor will transport you to the middle of the nineteenth century.

Five log buildings have been relocated to the compound’s grounds; one displays an exhibition of vintage apparel and hats, another exhibits Indian artifacts, and a fifth holds a doll collection with doll versions of Arkansas’s first ladies’ dresses.The barn donated by Boyce Sinclair is used to display antique farm equipment, while the cabin donated by the “Piney” Page Estate is the fifth log building.

Visit the Potts Inn Museum and admire the antiques.

21. The Center for the Arts

The Center for the Arts Russellville AR

The Center for the Arts is a well-known community venue that hosts live music, dancing, pageants, theater, and other acts. It is situated on the campus of Russellville High School. It boasts an auditorium with around 2,000 seats.

It’s a superb venue with great acoustics, dressing rooms, and an orchestra pit for a little place like Russellville AR. The center frequently hosts local and regional talent in addition to nationally recognized acts.

It’s an excellent local resource. Checking their website frequently is the greatest method to stay current with what they have to offer.

22. Big Piney Creek

Big Piney Creek Russellville AR

In the Ozark National Forest, 17 minutes from Russellville, is the 67-mile-long Big Piney Creek River. Whitewater streams are well-known for the river’s reasonably difficult Class I to III rapids, which are ideal for canoeing trips.

Smallmouth bass and spotted bass can be found in this river, which is also regarded as a top place for sportfishing.

Deer, wild turkeys, and even black bears can be seen in the hardwood and pine forests that cover the hillsides of Big Piney. Canoeing Big Piney Creek’s massive rapids is a thrilling adventure worth trying if you want to get your heart racing.

23. The Old Post Road Recreation Area and Campground

The Old Post Road Recreation Area and Campground Russellville AR

Many of the recreational activities in the Russellville AR region are provided by the Arkansas River and Lake Dardanelle; one of the most convenient locations to experience these natural resources is the neighboring Old Post Road Recreation Area and Campground.

There are many campsites at the park, all of which provide showers, lavatories, and water and electrical hookups for RV travelers.

There are lots of paths that are accessible to walkers, hikers, and bikers, as well as basketball courts and tennis courts, a playground, and a disc golf course, among other attractions, at the campground.

For details about opening hours and registration, visit their website.

FAQ’S

Question: Why is Russellville, Arkansas, well-known?

Russellville AR is renowned for its in-town historic district, local music culture, and art exhibits.

Question: Is Russellville, Arkansas, a good place to reside?

Pope County’s Russellville is one of the nicest locations to live in Arkansas. Residents in Russellville enjoy a sparse suburban vibe, and the majority own their homes. Russellville AR has a large population of families and young professionals, and its citizens lean conservative.

Conclusion

Because of its proximity to the Arkansas River and Lake Dardanelle, Russellville AR has a special charm that is uncommon in urban areas.

Due to its historic center and state parks, which are home to a thriving wildlife population, it has maintained its small-town charm while being close to large manufacturing plants. Discover what Russellville Arkansas, has to offer by engaging in some of the top activities.

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