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Adventures in the Villa

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Ozarks National Forest

2022-10-02 Traveling from Mountanview, AR to Cotter, AR

Travel Day today. This caravan is different from our previous caravans. We began the day with breakfast together, then we held our traditional Drivers Meeting, where the route was discussed, then we had another GAM. The reason we have so much time before we leave is that all our drives are short. Only 57 miles today.

When we travel like this between campgrounds we have to leave by a certain time, but we can not arrive at the new campground until after a certain time. This leaves us time to stop along the way and kill an hour or two…

We crossed the White River, then stopped in the town of Calico Rock…

This being Sunday, everything was closed… The White River is famous for trout fishing, so there are several fishing concessions on the river…

This appears to be the Calico Rock…

To quote a song from the musical “Oklahoma”, on the occasion of one of the cowboys going to the big city, “And then I put my ear to a Bell telephone, and a strange women started in to talk…”

There is a nice park in the center of town with a picnic area…

We enjoyed a little lunch before we moved on…

We stopped once more, just to stretch our legs…

We arrived at the Denton Ferry RV park in Cotter, AR, population 886. There is literally nothing in this town. Its main attraction appears to be access to the White River and its trout fishing…

The campground is directly along the river…

Tonight’s dinner is at Colton’s, a chain steak house in nearby Mountain Home, AR. It is had to miss…

We had a nice banquet room to ourselves… Steaks, chops, chicken, ribs, and Salmon were on the menu… Service was a little slow (which is to be expected). It was nice to not eat deep fried Southern food…

We returned to the Villa. An enjoyable time was had by all…

2019-06-01 – Traveling West – Eureka Springs, AR

We left Little Rock about 8:00 am.  Arkansas is green…

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We were driving through the Ozarks National Forest…

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We stopped for a respite along the way… driving through windy, steep mountain roads is taxing, and relief was required…

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We arrived in Eureka Springs, and set up at the Green Tree Lodge and RV Park, a nice but basic RV park…

Then we drove one mile down the road to see the work of E. Fay Jones, an early apprentice of Frank Lloyd Wright at Taliesin, and a prolific architect and educator during his long career.  This is the Thorncrown Chapel:

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The interior is as spectacular as the exterior…

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The light fixtures along the “walls” are exquisite; the light is in the shape of the cross…

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As a true student of Frank Lloyd Wright, Fay’s chair designs are great, too!

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The rear is as great as the front…

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The attention to detail is astounding…

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The front door, repeating the diamond shape…

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The Thorncrown Chapel has won every architectural award imaginable… Just recently it was honored by leading the list of “40 under 40”, great architecture that has become iconic in less (fewer?) than 40 years…

The chapel is the dream of a man named Jim Reed, an Arkansas native, who bought this land in 1971 to build his retirement home.  Over the years he continually found strangers walking through the property enjoying the beautiful Ozarks hills.  Rather than fence them out, he decided to invite them in.  He and his wife decided to build a glass chapel as a place for visitors to relax in an inspiring way.  I think they have met their goal…

After such a beautiful place we drove to Eureka Springs and found the opposite:

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Eureka Springs was hot, noisy, crowded, and full of bikers and tourists.  There was some festival going on, although we never quite determined what it was.  The town is very historical, much like Bisbee, AZ, but the tourist factor rivaled Fredericksburg, TX, (and Graceland…)

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Eureka Springs was a late 19th century boom town which grew rapidly based on the water from their many springs.  All the quacks and snake oil salesmen came to town to sell magic water to cure everyone’s ills… The town suffered a bit when the Great Fire of 1888 burned it to the ground, but it was quickly rebuilt and grew to a population of over 4,000.  Today it has a population of about 2,000, but the historic downtown itself is nothing but biker bars and trinket shops… We did enjoy a good walk and we hope to return tomorrow for dinner at a highly rated French bistro…

As is our custom, we returned to the Villa for Happy Hours and a light supper; an enjoyable time was had by all…

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