Our 3rd annual road trip: Arkansas Hiking
We have a tradition that on the week of Thanksgiving, we go on a road trip to a state we haven't been to before. Usually we explore the downtown of the city we are staying in and go hiking to the national or state parks that are around. This year we decided to go hiking in Arkansas. It's funny, the reaction we got from people that we are going to Arkansas is, "Arkansas! What's in Arkansas?" We decided to see for ourselves…
Normally we dirve to our destination in one take but this year we decided to take it easy and stop by overnight in St Louis by the Arch. We didn't have too much time to explore the city but it will be definitey worth coming back to spend couple of days there. The next day we drove to Bentonville, Arkansas where we met our good friends – Runa and Bryan and their three beautiful babies (dogs): Charlie, Beasley and Amunet. We photographed Runa's & Brian's California wedding in Yosemite National Park. They showed us around their very cute town. Wal-Mart is headquartered in Bentonville and we got to see the very first Wal-Mart shop. Well, Walmart is everywhere there. There are even Walmart cafe's that, I guess, compete with Starbucks. We also got to check out the Crystal Bridges Museum of Art designed by Moshe Safdie. This place is truly amazing – many acres of beautiful parks and fantastic museum architecture surrounged by hills and forests.
The next day, Runa & Bryan took us to another Arkansas treasure… Eureka Springs. Their community was built on beautiful scenic mountains. We started our morning by having breakfast at a local favorite in Downtown Eureka Springs called "Local Flavor". Their brunch was dangerously delicious. Besides the breathtaking views and delicious fresh food, Eureka Springs has a very nice selection of unique boutiques. There is this one boutique called "Silly Chile" where you can find any type of hot sauce that exists on this planet. We bought a few selections ourselves:. Once we got our hot sauces, Runa suggested we check out a one-of-a-kind hat store called "Hats Hides & Heirlooms". The moment you walk in there you are treated like a friend. "The hat lady" sold us a hat in less than 10 minutes (Sasha has already received at least a dozen complements on it). Before leaving Eureka Springs, we got to stop by and explore the 1886 Crescent Hotel & Spa, which is allegedly America's most Haunted Hotel. In the early 1940's it was a health resort where Norman G. Baker performed different torturous experiments on patients with cancer. We don't want to spoil the history so check out the haunted site! We have some photos below.
After our tour of Eureka Springs, we got to photograph Runa and Bryan for a maternity session. They are expecting a baby girl coming February 2014. We are all super excited! big thank you to Runa & Bryan for such an amazing hospitality! We are so grateful to have you as our friends! We can't wait to photograph the little treasure in few months!