Groom's Guide: 6 Uniquely Arkansas Bachelor Parties Planned for You
These manly agendas are sure to entertain your groomsmen (plus, these parties won’t get you in trouble with your brides)!
- Fun & games: Throw on your sport coat and bet in style from the comfort of the Jockey Club or a private box. If you can’t get a table inside, that’s OK. You can still enjoy all Oaklawn has to offer in the bleachers or the infield. After the races, try the electronic gaming.
- Make it interesting! On a particular race, everybody bet on a different horse. The guy whose horse comes in last has to be the designated driver for the rest of your outings.
- Grub: Corn beef sandwiches and ice-cold beer are a must for lunch, but after the dust has settled on the track, take the boys to dinner at nearby Back Porch Grill for a hand-cut steak and scotch on the rocks. Lakeside on the deck is ideal, weather permitting.
- Drinks: The Big Chill, Smyly’s, Ohio Club, Rocky’s Corner, Bogart’s and even Sam’s Pizza Pub hideaway on Lake Hamilton serve entertainment and cocktails till late.
Sport Shooting Adventure
Remington Gun Club, Lonoke | Remington.com
- Fun & games: Grab your guns and spend the afternoon at this nationally acclaimed shooting club, which features nine trap fields and five skeet fields for public use. There are plenty of amenities, including free instruction and free use of shotguns for members in your party.
- Raise the stakes! Make a competition out of it — the worst shot of the day buys dinner!
- Grub: After a little friendly firing, head to Cabot’s Mean Pig for their world-famous, celebrity- and Travel Channel-endorsed barbecue. After all, what could be manlier than a barbecue joint that serves 2,000 pounds of meat each week?
- Drinks: You’re in a dry county, so you’ll have to pack a cooler or return to a wet county for the celebratory portion of your party.
- Other ranges to consider: Blue Rock Sportsman’s Club (North Little Rock), Dr. James E. Moore Jr. Camp Robinson Firing Range (Mayflower), Paul H. “Rocky” Willmuth Sport Shooting Complex (Batesville)
Big Piney Creek
- Fun & games: Put in near Treat at Helton’s Farm (land-owners charge a small fee). This 10-mile stretch is popular among white water seekers. You’ll tackle Class I-IV rapids, including “Roller Coaster,” “Surfing Hole” and “Cascades of Extinction.”
- Lodging: Call it a day downstream at Long Pool, a Forest Service campground complete with restrooms. Expect a fee for use of the campsite.
- Grub & drinks: Pack a cooler full of easy campfire meals and canoe snacks. (Please don’t litter in the river.) If you plan to fish on your voyage, cook the catch-of-the-day and toast the groom with beers around the fire.
- More white water: Buffalo National River, Illinois Bayou, Little Missouri River and Cadron Creek
Upper White River
- Fun & games: Grab your fly-fishing rod and overnight bag for a weekend of trout fishing. The Upper White River has its advantages, as you’re a short drive to more activities in Eureka Springs.
- Lodging: Spider Creek Resort’s assortment of comfortable cabins is perfect for your group of guys. They’ve got great views and close proximity to the river, wrap-around decks, cable on big-screen TVs, king-sized beds, full kitchens and more.
- Grub & drinks: Need ingredients for your fish fry? Walk a mere 100 feet from Spider Creek to the Beaver Dam Store. They sell groceries, beer and tackle, and can pair you with a fishing guide.
- Other fly-fishing hotspots: Bull Shoals Tailwater (White River), Greers Ferry Tailwater (Little Red River), Spring River
Hot Springs Village
- Fun & games: There are nine championship golf courses to choose from; four are among the top 10 in Arkansas. Aim to play three: 36 holes on Saturday and 18 on Sunday. (We suggest Granada.)
- Grub & drinks: The Village isn’t known for its bar scene, so kick back at Granada’s sports grill Tanners on the Green. Stay for dinner or rehash each hole over beers and bourbon on the patio.
- Lodging: Stay a short drive away in historic Hot Springs at the Arlington Resort Hotel & Spa. This will give you great nightlife options within walking distance (no DD needed) and access to spa services — perhaps an after-golf massage?
If the ponies aren’t your thing but the crew has betting on the brain, sneak over the border into Oklahoma or Mississippi to play at one of these joints:
- Fun & games: Try the popular Cherokee Casino just across the state line in West Siloam Springs, or the ones in Roland and Sallisaw, Okla. near Fort Smith.
- Up the ante! Plan a poker game for just your group back in the Chief Suite — winner takes all!
- Grub & drinks: At the West Siloam Springs casino, take the boys out for a juicy rib-eye at Flint Creek Steakhouse before heading to Seven — there are more than 375 beers on this nightclub’s menu.
Hard Rock Hotel & Casino
- Fun & games: Its located in Tulsa, Okla., about an hour and a half from Fayetteville and fewer than 4 from Little Rock. The gaming is great, but the live performances are better. Acts like ZZ Top, Ron White, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Sheryl Crow and Dierks Bentley perform at The Joint year-round.
- Grub & drinks: Kick back at Toby Keith’s I Love this Bar & Grill or suit up for fine dining at McGill’s on 19.
- Fun & games: There are nine lively casinos just a 2.5-hour drive from Little Rock, or 5 from Fayetteville.
- Grub & drinks: This Vegas-style setting calls for an all-you-can-eat buffet dinner, but Sunday morning, cure your hangovers at the famous Blue & White Restaurant.