Area Events

Presenting the events of The Buffalo National River and The Ozark Mountains

America’s First National River

In the heart of the Ozarks, the Buffalo River is American’s first national river, established in 1972.  The river starts in the Boston Mountains as just a trickle and freely flows 135 miles down to the White River.  The Buffalo River is one of the few remaining undammed rivers in the lower 48 states. Once you arrive, prepare to journey from running rapids to quiet pools while surrounded by massive bluffs as you cruise through the Ozark Mountains.
The Upper Buffalo National River is where Saddleback Lodge is located.  The Upper Buffalo offers the most picturesque part of the river with its enormous towering limestone bluffs,  waterfalls, woodlands, and protected wilderness for nature watching opportunities. The scenic views include, deer, elk, turkey and smallmouth bass is a catch along the river.  The National river offers over 100 miles of trails for hiking or horseback riding.

Here are just a few examples of the region’s premier annual events.

Area Events - Elk

Annual Elk Rut

Historic Boxley Valley – Mid September – Mid November

Boxley Valley is the best location for viewing the Arkansas elk herd. September and October are the peak months of the rut.  During this time, you’ll hear the bull elk bugling in the mornings and evenings, and may even witness the bulls fighting  for their cows – thrilling the thousands who make the annual trip.

Area Events - Biking

Buffalo Headwaters Challenge Bike Race

Upper Buffalo River – Late January

For onlookers and racers alike!  The challenge includes traditional narrow and technical Headwaters single track, along with newly built flow-type trails.  The rugged terrain is difficult and remote and offers riders the Half Challenge or Full Challenge ride.

Area Events - Hiking

Wildflower Open Gate Tour

Smith Creek Preserve, Boxley – Early April  

Smith Creek Nature Preserve opens their gate every spring allowing easy access to the hiking trail at Smith Creek.  This is a peak wildflower season tour with several species flowering!

Area Events - Music Festival Logo

Crawdad Days 

Harrison – 3rd weekend in May

The festival offers something for the entire family.  Music, Car Show, Carnival rides, Food, Crafts, Clothing items, and the star attraction “CRAWFISH!”

Area Events - elk

Buffalo River Elk Festival

Jasper – Last weekend in June

The Buffalo River Elk Festival, first held in 1998, is an award-winning festival and one of the premier craft fairs and outdoor sporting events in Arkansas.  The Festival celebrates the successful reintroduction of elk to Newton County, the official “Elk Capital of Arkansas.”

Area Events - Hot Air Balloon Festival

Harrison Balloon Festival 

Harrison – Early September  

This unique outdoor event that began in 1995 is held in beautiful downtown Harrison, Arkansas. The Festival kicks off on Friday evening with The Hare and the Hound Balloon Race. The event continues on Saturday morning with more Balloon Race Competitions and through Sunday with several Balloon Race Competitions for all to enjoy. Come experience the “Hot Air Balloon Adventure” with us!

Area Events - Forest

War Eagle Arts and Crafts Fair 

War Eagle – 3rd weekend in October  

Each fall we join with our neighbors to put on the best craft fair in the country right here in the beautiful War Eagle Valley.  Revel in the sights, sounds and aromas of the Ozark’s while enjoying handcrafted work from national artisans.  It’s an experience you don’t want to miss.

Area Events - Boxley Mill

Boxley Grist Mill Tours

Boxley – Weekends in October   

The Historic 1870 Boxley Grist Mill served the residents of Boxley Valley for nearly 100 years.

Area Events - sunset

Color Fest

Ponca Elk Education Center – Mid October  

Fine Art Exhibition.  Two days of art demonstrations and an art show.  Free admission