Posts Tagged ‘Crystal Bridges’

10 reasons to visit Bentonville and Northwest Arkansas this winter

November 19th, 2015 by Laughlin House

The colder the temps in Bentonville, the brighter the spirit – which is all the more reason to come visit this winter! Here are just a few of the things to look forward to in the weeks to come.

2015 Lighting of Square

  1. Winter Festivities begin.

On Saturday, Nov. 21, Downtown Bentonville will be transformed into winter wonderland, with a variety of activities around the Square throughout the day.

— Start bright and early at the Square to cheer on your favorite runner in the annual Girls On the Run NWA 5k and 10k race. Race activities begin at 7 a.m.

— Afterward, shop for handmade, local gifts at the Winter Market inside the Meteor Guitar Gallery (128 W Central Ave.), from 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.

— Stick around for Ice skating. The Rink at Lawrence Plaza opens for the season starting at noon.

— Finally, the official Lighting of the Square ceremony starts at 6 p.m. on the Square. Be sure to stay for the orchestra, lighting of the tree, and ice skating show at Lawrence Plaza, starting a few minutes after the ceremony on the Square.

— (And we’d be remiss if we failed to mention Fayetteville’s Lights of the Ozarks, whose ceremony takes place the night before, Friday, Nov. 20 at 6 p.m.) Truly a mesmerizing spectacle of color and light.

  1. Call those Hogs! There are still a couple of Razorback home games left this season … why not take the opportunity to cheer them on?!
    – Saturday, Nov. 21, 6 p.m. Arkansas vs. Mississippi State.
    – Saturday, Nov. 27, 1:30 p.m., Arkansas vs. Missouri


  1. Picturing the Americas exhibit at Crystal Bridges, featuring more than 100 oil paintings, watercolors, prints, and photographs from artists in North and South America. Crystal Bridges is the only museum in the U.S. to host this exhibition. Open from Nov. 7 through Jan. 18.


  1. Frank Lloyd Wright’s Bachman-Wilson house is now open for tours on the Crystal Bridges grounds! Open for tours daily except Tuesdays. No cost, but advance tickets are required.


  1. Crystal Bridges recently extended its hours on Thursdays! You can now stay until 9 p.m. on Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays – which also means that their restaurant, Eleven, is open for dinner an extra day, too. Fantastic!


  1. Speaking of Eleven, if you haven’t experienced a Wednesday Over Water (WOW), you must go! A monthly event in the Crystal Bridges award-winning restaurant (for ages 21 and up) that mixes art with food and drink, it’s an experience that engages all the senses. The next one, themed “High South’s Greatest Hits” is on December 16 at 6 p.m. Make your reservations – these events tend to sell out fast.


Christmas Parade 2013 from roof of Walmart Museum

Christmas Parade 2013 from roof of Walmart Museum

  1. Annual Christmas Parade – one of the largest daytime parades in the state, according to the Visit Bentonville website. Thousands of participants will march or float down Main Street on Saturday, December 12, from 11 a.m. – 1 p.m.
  1. Warm up with a round of beers at one of the many new microbreweries, cideries or wineries in the area. Explore the Fayetteville Ale Trail on your own (be sure to have a designated driver), or book a tour with one of the new tour companies, like Hogshead Tours.Breweries by city include:

Bentonville: Bike Rack Brewery, Bentonville Brewing Company (you can walk to these from our B&B!)

Rogers: Ozark Beer Company, Core Tasting Room, Foster’s Pint and Plate

Springdale: Core Beer Company, Black Apple Crossing Cidery, Saddlebock Brewery

Fayetteville: Apple Blossom Brewery, Columbus House Brewery, Fossil Cove Brewery, West Mountain Brewing Company


  1. Go for a bike ride on sections (or all!) of the Razorback Regional Greenway to take in the beauty of NWA this winter. The main artery of a more elaborate trail system built in NWA over the last few years, the Greenway is officially open all the way from south Fayetteville all the way to Bella Vista. It’s a beautiful ride no matter what time of year. According to findings from a study published by the Walton Family Foundation, Northwest Arkansas has almost as many cyclists daily per capita as San Francisco.
  2. Or go for a walk! According to that same study, NWA has as many pedestrians per capita as San Diego (and more than Portland, OR!) There are plenty of brand new destinations to walk to from the B&B, including the recently opened downtown Walmart Neighborhood Market, Onyx Coffee Lab, Backwoods Bentonville, (soon to relocate) Pressroom and more!

No matter what your reason for visiting, we’ll be glad you came. Cheers!



We’re back – just in time for fall in Northwest Arkansas

September 17th, 2015 by Laughlin House

Come and eat a cookie!

Twinkie - excited to meet you!

Twinkie is excited to meet you!

Well it’s official, we’re back up and running, and it looks like we’ll be nice and busy throughout the next couple of months.  We’ve enjoyed our break over the past year, but we’re more than ready to get back into the innkeeping game.

Our guests have been asking us why we took the break — and we’ve assured them that nothing sinister was afoot. I had begun looking for a part-time job during a particularly slow winter season, and I was offered a fantastic full-time job, instead, and I just couldn’t pass the opportunity up — simple as that! Don and I seized the opportunity to take a bit of a break, travel on the weekends, explore all the new microbreweries in town, dote on Twinkie, and just live normal lives for a bit.

The house didn’t get too much of a break, though. It served as the headquarters for the organizers of the Bentonville Film Festival for about eight months – how cool is that?!

But the B&B and downtown Bentonville beckoned to me.  Much as I enjoyed my time as a normal 30-something, I missed the bed and breakfast. So we decided to reopen — just in time for the busy fall season. Between Bikes, Blues and BBQ, the War Eagle Craft Fair, Slaughter Pen Jam, Razorback football games and other University of Arkansas activities, fall foliage, Octoberfest beer at the microbreweries, and the grand opening of the  Bachman-Wilson House at Crystal Bridges, we couldn’t have picked a better time to get back into the business.

The house has a fresh coat of paint, we’ve taken inventory, made a few tweaks here and there, and are exploring opportunities for how to make Laughlin House even better than ever.

We look forward to hosting our guests and sharing all that Bentonville and Northwest Arkansas has to offer.

See you soon!



In love with local art

April 10th, 2013 by Laughlin House

If you’ve ever visited our B&B, you know that we are big fans of our local artists. In fact, we’ve tried to share as much of them with our guests as we can without cluttering up the inn. In addition to the paintings, lithographs and prints on our walls, our dishes were made by local potters, we provide handmade local soaps in our rooms, and we point our guests toward the fabulous creations of our local chefs and culinary artists. (The amazing culinary scene in Bentonville is another post altogether!)

Original painting

“Walking in the Natural State” by Steve Horan

Transom windows by Heirloom Stained Glass

Transom windows by Heirloom Stained Glass

Soap dishes by local potter; handmade soaps by RiverPure

Soap dishes by local potter; handmade soaps by RiverPure

Waterfalls by Melissa Garrison

Waterfalls by Melissa Garrison

Face mugs and soap dish in The Laught

Face mugs and soap dish in The Laught



Roarks Bluff by Carol Dickie

Roarks Bluff by Carol Dickie

The beauty of Northwest Arkansas has beckoned to artists for years, and many have called our area home and found daily inspiration in our unique surroundings. And with the world-class Crystal Bridges Museum now nestled into the Bentonville landscape, the local art scene is blossoming.  Around the area you’ll find galleries, art shops and co-ops –along with a variety of arts and crafts fairs in certain seasons –showcasing the work of our talented artists.

Some of our favorite places to buy local art:

Poor Richards Art, 101 W. Walnut Street in downtown Rogers (our neighboring town). This is an art co-op that specializes in fine arts and crafts.  Pottery, jewelry, paintings and prints, fabric arts and more.

Norberta Philbrook Art Gallery, 114 W. Central Ave., Bentonville. Find paintings, pottery and more from NWA artists. This gallery also has partnered with Practical Magic Art Supply

Wishing Springs Art Gallery, 8862 W. McNelly Rd., Bella Vista (our neighboring town to the north).  Art co-op highlighting the work of Bella Vista artists and crafters.

Crystal Bridges Museum Gift Store, 600 Museum Way, Bentonville. The museum store has a wide selection of gifts and fine art, including original pieces from select local artists. We’re excited that one of the artists we feature on our dining room walls, Carol Dickie, also has pieces in the museum store.

Bentonville Farmer’s Market, on the square starting April 28.  In addition to excellent quality fresh produce, meats and fresh-baked goods, the Bentonville Farmer’s market also features art, crafts and furniture.  In fact, this is where we found our local soap vendor, RiverPure. (We provide the Lavender-Citrus and the Lemongrass scented soaps as part of our guests’ in-room amenities).

Thursday Bentonville Art Market, will take place in and around the Square every third Thursday starting June 20. And don’t miss the Bentonville ArtsFest Art Walk  on the Square June 7. This takes place during a monthlong Celebration of the Arts in downtown Bentonville.

Eureka Springs (a 45-minute drive away) is jam-packed with local art galleries, and many of the artists who show there also have expanded into our section of NWA.

There are many more galleries and art shops in and around NWA, many of excellent quality. The ones we listed above are just the places we frequent most often and where we find a good majority of the pieces we have in the B&B.

If you’re looking to just enjoy art and are not particularly in the market to buy (although I’m sure you’ll find pieces for sale, too), there’s more to see in and around the downtown Bentonville area. In addition to the masterpieces on display inside and on the grounds of Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art,  there is a really cool, unique art experience in the ground floor of the new 21c Museum hotel just a block away. There’s also the Majesty Republic art gallery on the Square. The Pressroom coffee shop, the Bentonville Convention and Visitors Bureau  and Tusk and Trotter American Brasserie also feature local art on their walls. There are periodic art shows at Art Seen 107 (107 SE 3rd St, Bentonville) and at Studio 124 by Thomas Merritt (new location for his studio TBD, but keep your eyes peeled!).

More is on the way. We will do our best to keep the Bentonville Arts Scene alive and thriving!