Jump to content

Hot Springs


tim2462

Recommended Posts

Exactly. I think we all know Hot Springs would have never become a 'Las Vegas' with the way the state is. But it really does seem like it would have been a prime candidate for what Branson ended up becoming. But it also makes me wonder, is Missouri doing a better job of promoting itself like this? Is Arkansas in a sense sorta holding back Hot Springs? While it seems to me that Arkansas does well promoting it's state parks and natural beauty. I'm not so sure it does very well in other aspects. Which also reminds me of Altus. I think Missouri does a very good job of promoting it's wine industry and it's also become a nice tourist destination. I think Altus is just as good as the locations in Missouri. But it seems the state does very little to help promote it. Maybe it has something to do with the fact there's a large group of non drinking Protestants who don't like the idea of promoting a wine producing area. Just seems to me that Arkansas has a hard time promoting anything outside the natural outdoors.

I don't think we really want Hot Springs becoming like Branson. Branson certainly does very well in attracting it's share of people but it's really just a rhinestone when we'd like to see Hot Springs as a true diamond. I'm not bashing on people who enjoy Branson as there are plenty of attractions there I'd go to as well but I think most people know what I mean. I think the thing holding back Hot Springs is just what do we use that has modern appeal as a draw? We don't want it full of a bunch of country music shows, or at least I don't.

On the wine industry, you are spot on. We have very good wine growing conditions here. Our soils, especially in the Ozarks, are on par with some of the best wine growing regions of the world. Our weather on the other hand is a bit tough but with diligence I think upper tier wine could be produced here. We do need to lighten up on the alcohol fright and make use of this resource.

Link to comment
Share on other sites


On the wine industry, you are spot on. We have very good wine growing conditions here. Our soils, especially in the Ozarks, are on par with some of the best wine growing regions of the world. Our weather on the other hand is a bit tough but with diligence I think upper tier wine could be produced here. We do need to lighten up on the alcohol fright and make use of this resource.

I think the prevalence of the hard religious right in Arkansas is a reason Altus isn't promoted like it could be. Once you get up into central Missouri, hard Southern Baptists make way for Catholics and Presbyterians who are much more open to alcohol.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think the prevalence of the hard religious right in Arkansas is a reason Altus isn't promoted like it could be. Once you get up into central Missouri, hard Southern Baptists make way for Catholics and Presbyterians who are much more open to alcohol.

Yeah, I'm quite certain that plays a HUGE role.

While I'm certainly no true expert on wine making, I've done a fair bit of research and IMO Altus is actually not an optimal location for growing fine wine grapes in Arkansas. The elevation is sufficiently low that you don't get cool enough nighttime temps to promote sugar production. Thus the main grapes those wineries there grow are native Muscadines which make rathe poor wine. I thought main reason our wine growers were in that location was because German and Italian Catholocs relocated there because of Subiaco and that's really the only reason. We can't produce wine in the optimum locations because they're typically in dry counties! In other words, again in my not entirely expert opinion, we'll never get even a regionally prominent wine industry, let alone nationally prominent, out of Altus no matter how much we promote it.

Edited by Stormcrow
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yeah, I'm quite certain that plays a HUGE role.

While I'm certainly no true expert on wine making, I've done a fair bit of research and IMO Altus is actually not an optimal location for growing fine wine grapes in Arkansas. The elevation is sufficiently low that you don't get cool enough nighttime temps to promote sugar production. Thus the main grapes those wineries there grow are native Muscadines which make rathe poor wine. I thought main reason our wine growers were in that location was because German and Italian Catholocs relocated there because of Subiaco and that's really the only reason. We can't produce wine in the optimum locations because they're typically in dry counties! In other words, again in my not entirely expert opinion, we'll never get even a regionally prominent wine industry, let alone nationally prominent, out of Altus no matter how much we promote it.

Everything I've heard is that Altus does have a good microclimate. I believe I've even heard that the reason the Wiederkehr family moved there was because of the conditions there. I also believe there's some nice soil around Altus. I think they could grow some better wine grapes. But to be honest I think many of the locals prefer 'sweet wine' instead of the more 'serious' stuff you find elsewhere. There's nothing wrong with people liking a different type of wine. But overall I just think it's what people are used to in the area. The fact that the state has never properly promoted Altus certainly doesn't help. But there are problems to growing vinifera grapes in Arkansas. Even Missouri has problems as well. Winter can be very rough on vinifera vines. Then also being so far from the coast also means you can have wild temperature swings instead of a more moderate temperature average. But I think Missouri has done a good job of working with what it's got. They've had pretty good success with their Norton (called Cynthiana here in Arkansas but basically the same thing). I think Arkansas could do good things with it too if it were ever given a chance.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Everything I've heard is that Altus does have a good microclimate. I believe I've even heard that the reason the Wiederkehr family moved there was because of the conditions there. I also believe there's some nice soil around Altus. I think they could grow some better wine grapes. But to be honest I think many of the locals prefer 'sweet wine' instead of the more 'serious' stuff you find elsewhere. There's nothing wrong with people liking a different type of wine. But overall I just think it's what people are used to in the area. The fact that the state has never properly promoted Altus certainly doesn't help. But there are problems to growing vinifera grapes in Arkansas. Even Missouri has problems as well. Winter can be very rough on vinifera vines. Then also being so far from the coast also means you can have wild temperature swings instead of a more moderate temperature average. But I think Missouri has done a good job of working with what it's got. They've had pretty good success with their Norton (called Cynthiana here in Arkansas but basically the same thing). I think Arkansas could do good things with it too if it were ever given a chance.

Are you a bit of a wine buff Mith?

I was wondering what types of things people thought would help to spark Hot Springs to even greater heights? It isn't like it's drying up or anything of the sort but it could always be doing more.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Are you a bit of a wine buff Mith?

I was wondering what types of things people thought would help to spark Hot Springs to even greater heights? It isn't like it's drying up or anything of the sort but it could always be doing more.

Yeah I guess I'd consider myself a wine buff, along with a few other things. :lol: And you're right about Hot Springs, it's in a lot better shape now than back in the 80's. It was pretty rough back then and there was talk the government might even reconsider the natl Park status if things continued to decline in Hot Springs. Earlier I didn't mean that Hot Springs should become exactly like Branson. But I certainly wouldn't mind seeing Hot Springs becoming a bigger destination either. I'd just like to see some urban areas take better advantage of the tourist trade. It's great that lots of people come to check out the state parks. I'd just like to see more people check out some of the more urban areas as well. Little Rock, Hot Springs and Eureka Springs do bring in people. But I think there's a lot of room for improvement.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yeah I guess I'd consider myself a wine buff, along with a few other things. :lol: And you're right about Hot Springs, it's in a lot better shape now than back in the 80's. It was pretty rough back then and there was talk the government might even reconsider the natl Park status if things continued to decline in Hot Springs. Earlier I didn't mean that Hot Springs should become exactly like Branson. But I certainly wouldn't mind seeing Hot Springs becoming a bigger destination either. I'd just like to see some urban areas take better advantage of the tourist trade. It's great that lots of people come to check out the state parks. I'd just like to see more people check out some of the more urban areas as well. Little Rock, Hot Springs and Eureka Springs do bring in people. But I think there's a lot of room for improvement.

I'm not much of a wine buff but I've always had this unexplainable urge to operate a winery and vineyard, which explains why I've done some extremely rudimentary research into what that takes. I know just enough to sound like I might have a clue but no real expertise. I prefer beer myself and used to be an avid homebrewer.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'm not much of a wine buff but I've always had this unexplainable urge to operate a winery and vineyard, which explains why I've done some extremely rudimentary research into what that takes. I know just enough to sound like I might have a clue but no real expertise. I prefer beer myself and used to be an avid homebrewer.

Yeah it would be interesting. Although I prefer wine I like beer as well. Although I'm no fan of most of the mass produced stuff you tend to find here in the US. But there is some good microbrew.

Link to comment
Share on other sites


Mith, I was in HS today and saw the Gangster Museum. It looked like it was open to me, though I wasn't able to check it out today. It's in Antique Row over by the Majestic.

Cool, thanks for the update. I'll have to check out Hot Springs next time I'm visiting family down in that area.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 1 month later...

I think the prevalence of the hard religious right in Arkansas is a reason Altus isn't promoted like it could be. Once you get up into central Missouri, hard Southern Baptists make way for Catholics and Presbyterians who are much more open to alcohol.

Sort of off topic, but it frustrates me how the hard religious right in Arkansas continually get their way. I think it's a case of 5% of the population being more motivated and active in public affairs than the rest of the population. I know a lot of church-going people, and the vast majority of them are social drinkers and don't particularly enjoy dry counties. I would even say that most of members of churches couldn't care less about the dry v. wet debate, but the 5% that really want to keep a county dry get out and get it done.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Sort of off topic, but it frustrates me how the hard religious right in Arkansas continually get their way. I think it's a case of 5% of the population being more motivated and active in public affairs than the rest of the population. I know a lot of church-going people, and the vast majority of them are social drinkers and don't particularly enjoy dry counties. I would even say that most of members of churches couldn't care less about the dry v. wet debate, but the 5% that really want to keep a county dry get out and get it done.

Yeah that and not all denominations have an abhorrence to alcohol. I think the one big group that presents the biggest problem are Southern Baptists. They wield a lot of power in Arkansas it seems. But there does seem to be some people, who even though they drink themselves, prefer to keep their own county dry for some reason.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...

Yeah that and not all denominations have an abhorrence to alcohol. I think the one big group that presents the biggest problem are Southern Baptists. They wield a lot of power in Arkansas it seems. But there does seem to be some people, who even though they drink themselves, prefer to keep their own county dry for some reason.

I'll post on this and then leave it alone....

A lot of people believe drunk driving is reduced in dry counties, which has been proven to be false. And, it makes sense. When a drunk wants another drink, and drive to get it, they have a lot farther to go in dry counties.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 1 month later...

Fairground Crossing

Some of the stores that have been announced are Sam's Club, Best Buy, and Bed Bath & Beyond.

This is being developed at the old fairgrounds on Higdon Ferry, near St. Joseph's.

This sucks big-time. Higdon Ferry is such a nightmare as it is. I know they have been doing some roadwork in that area, but this development will put even more traffic right there. It's been about a year since I was there last... I'm not scheduled to vacation there this year until November, so have they widened Higdon Ferry between the loop and the racetrack? If not they soon will wish they had.

By the way, I thought that fairgrounds was in use? Every time I'm there it always seems like something is going on there. Where is the new fairgrounds?

Link to comment
Share on other sites


This sucks big-time. Higdon Ferry is such a nightmare as it is. I know they have been doing some roadwork in that area, but this development will put even more traffic right there. It's been about a year since I was there last... I'm not scheduled to vacation there this year until November, so have they widened Higdon Ferry between the loop and the racetrack? If not they soon will wish they had.

By the way, I thought that fairgrounds was in use? Every time I'm there it always seems like something is going on there. Where is the new fairgrounds?

The new fairgrounds are out on 270, between Hot Springs and Malvern...near the county line. Last time I was on Higdon Ferry, they were widening it in that area, but not sure how much progress they've made. They've also made several exit/entrance improvements in that area. They really did a good job alleviating the traffic headache at the bypass and Central.

Edited by tim2462
Link to comment
Share on other sites

This sucks big-time. Higdon Ferry is such a nightmare as it is. I know they have been doing some roadwork in that area, but this development will put even more traffic right there. It's been about a year since I was there last... I'm not scheduled to vacation there this year until November, so have they widened Higdon Ferry between the loop and the racetrack? If not they soon will wish they had.

By the way, I thought that fairgrounds was in use? Every time I'm there it always seems like something is going on there. Where is the new fairgrounds?

It's not widened yet, but traffic on Higdon Ferry isn't usually all that bad unless Oaklawn's in high season.

This development still may include a Target, they were asking for some tax breaks Hot Springs didn't really want to give.

I spend a lot if not most weekends over there, so these are stores I'm glad to have. That said, Higdon Ferry may not cut the time off of getting to Oaklawn or downtown from the lake the way it used to.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 4 years later...

It's not widened yet, but traffic on Higdon Ferry isn't usually all that bad unless Oaklawn's in high season.

This development still may include a Target, they were asking for some tax breaks Hot Springs didn't really want to give.

I spend a lot if not most weekends over there, so these are stores I'm glad to have. That said, Higdon Ferry may not cut the time off of getting to Oaklawn or downtown from the lake the way it used to.

I know this thread is nearly 5 years old. For that I apologize, but has anyone heard any news on this? I emailed Target, and they said they were working with the local government, which could take years (it has). It wasn't an official confirmation of one going in, but I was surprised to hear that they are still trying.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 1 year later...

CVS is going where Perkin's and the Shell Station used to be. 

 

The Courtyard: Marriott is going in between Hank's and Ruby Tuesday's with an entrance from Central and Files Road. 

 

Jimmy John's, Atwoods, and Holiday Inn Express just opened. 

 

Alco and Save-A-Lot are going out of business. Rumors are Walmart bought land to the right of the shopping center. 

Edited by luvhotsprings
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 4 weeks later...
  • 2 weeks later...

It looks like Gamestop has closed it's mall location today,as well as Pacsun closing. The toy store there has also closed, if I'm not mistaken of the location.

While I was there today, it looked like Sears is about to close due to the lack of merchandising and empty shelves. Also, it looked as if Wet Seal is on it's way out. You could see the empty walls by just walking by. Also, with the seasonal stores, the mall's occupancy will be very low.

With that, there will only be a Dillards, JCPenney and Goodys - which are running themselves out of business- and a few others like American Eagle, Victoria Secret,and Bath & Body works. I possibly see Hibbett Sports closing their mall location, like Gamestop did because of a more central location in Cornerstone Marketplace.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

From today's Sentinel Record;

Two boutique hotels are going to open downtown in the Dugan-Stuart and the Thompson building in the 200 & 300 block of Central Avenue, respectively. The plans for the Thompson building are going to have medium priced rooms but with high-end service. The rest of the rooms will be king suites. There will be a restaurant and a rooftop terrace. The Dugan Stuart building has secured a national franchise from a high-end chocolate company, being ran by a Garland County couple. A small fruit-and-wine-tasting shop will open being ran by a couple from Amity, and a man is looking to put in an IMAX type of attraction. Both of these hotels will be nationally branded.(I'm expecting to see a Marriott or Hilton-like hotel brand associate themselves with these hotels.)

Also, a plaza is wanting to be built on the former site of the Baxter Hotel that burned down shortly after the Majestic. This will expect to help revitalize the neighborhood, and this site will commemorate the Baxter hotel.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hot Springs Mall has a new owner - a company from New York. The last owners left the mall in really bad shape and store barely hanging on. The new mall owner has plans to revitalize the mall and lower the rent for the current tenants. I wonder what renovations could be happening. Dillards, JCPenney, and Sears are going to be the three anchors still, but there's a lot of stores that closed that people used.

List of closed stores;

Body Shop

Wet Seal

Christopher & Banks

Game Stop

Guest Services

PacSun

Toys & Hobbies

Hallmark

I personally think they should turn it into an outdoor mall with a food court and try to get some of the tenants they lost over the past few years, but get a couple of new ones like Hollister, Sephora, Lids, and Forever 21 (which is probably a long shot for Hot Springs.) I'm hoping the new owners are more successful than Aranov because without the mall, everyone has to shop in Little Rock.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site you agree to our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.