Things to Do in Texarkana, TX
Like any community, there are plenty of great things to do in Texarkana, TX. Sometimes these events, attractions and restaurants are well known, while other times it takes a well-trained eye or local guide to introduce you to them. If you are looking for more variety, the more populous cities in Texas are certain to accommodate your desires of activities.
Imagine the fun of being a 6-year-old and being allowed to dress up as a Tyrannosaurus Rex, then run around wild for 10 or 20 minutes. Youngsters in the Ark-Tex Region don’t have to merely imagine such an enjoyable scenario because they can actually experience it at Discovery Place Children’s Museum. The Texarkana attraction features a number of interactive exhibits geared toward students in kindergarten through sixth grade.
The U.S. Post Office and Courthouse in Texarkana is the only federal building in the country that is actually in two states. The northern portion of the building is in Texarkana, Ark., while the southern half is in Texarkana, Texas. That means that the courthouse is in two circuits (the 5th and the 8th) and in two districts (Eastern District of Texas and the Western District of Arkansas). The unique building was constructed in 1933 and is on the National Register of Historic Places.
On one Friday night every year, it's not a state line that divides Texas and Arkansas: it's a line of scrimmage. One of the nation’s greatest high school football rivalries plays out in the late summer in Texarkana when Texas and Arkansas high schools knock heads. The contest pits two of each state’s best teams playing before nearly 10,000 fans, either in Texas or four miles away at Arkansas High School.
Pine-lined recreational waterways draw people from across Texas to what Mount Vernon Main Street manager Teresia Wims likes to call the “Tri-Lake Area.” Lake Cypress Springs, Lake Bob Sandlin and Lake Monticello provide ample opportunities for fishing, boating or simply sitting on a pier and dangling one’s toes into the water. About eight miles south of Mount Vernon, Lake Cypress Springs has twice been named the most beautiful lake in Texas by Dallas’ D Magazine. “It’s gorgeous,” Wims says of the spring-fed lake, built by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.
The Ark-Tex region offers a bounty of cultural assets from art galleries to museums to historic sites. Here’s just a small sample: Museum of Regional History Housed in a building erected in 1879, the Museum of Regional History details the story of the community named for Texas, Arkansas and Louisiana. Texarkana’s roots date to the railroad era, where two lines connected at the Arkansas and Texas state line and lots were sold for a new settlement.
More than 300 bird species have been spotted in Atlanta State Park, just southwest of Texarkana on Lake Wright Patman Dam. The 1,475-acre park fronts a reservoir with 170 miles of shoreline. With hilly terrain, woodland cover and waterfront, the park is hospitable to many types of birds, and plans include building on a reputation as a great birding destination. Nearly 100 species are considered common or likely to spot, many of them in autumn when the leaves are down and visibility improves, says Kody Waters, park superintendent.
Beef is a staple in Northeast Texas cuisine, and The District Bar & Grill in Texarkana knows a thing or two about serving it right. Diners at The District can choose from a juicy Black Canyon Angus beef sirloin, a thick New York strip and eight – yes, eight – varieties of burgers.
For 28 years, I’ve been touring most theaters of any note – and some theaters of no note – in 48 states, and never have I seen a theater as beautifully restored as this one.” Those are the words of renowned stage and screen actor Hal Holbrook in praise of Texarkana’s Perot Theatre, constructed in 1924 and the object of a $2.4 million restoration in 1979-80.
An outdoor mural in Texarkana honors the city’s most famous son. The Scott Joplin Mural is on display in the downtown district on Main Street at Third Street. Joplin was a ragtime composer and piano player who lived from 1867-1917 and posthumously won a Pulitzer Prize for his work.