The holiday shopping season kicked off yesterday with big box store bargains on Black Friday. Today, Fort Smith’s local businesses get to shine with spectacular discounts on what is now known as Small Business Saturday.
For those who are unfamiliar with Small Business Saturday, it is a day when mom-and-pop retailers get the chance to compete for those highly coveted Christmas dollars. Small Business Saturday was started by American Express four years ago to help these smaller shops get the business that they need to survive. This year, Small Business Saturday should rival the previous day’s traffic at the big box stores.
So where do people in Arkansas’ second largest city go to partake in this new tradition? That is easy, people will head to Downtown Fort Smith. With its mix of boutiques and consignment shops, Downtown Fort Smith has become the mecca of Small Town Saturday. Of course all of that shopping is sure to make people hungry. The good news is that Downtown Fort Smith is filled with just as many restaurants. Here is a list of the best of what Downtown Fort Smith has to offer.
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The Hamburger Barn
You love hamburgers, and hate to go shopping. The Hamburger Barn offers you the chance to indulge in a delicious hamburger while fighting for those bargains. Located next to Downtown Fort Smith’s only convenience store, The Hamburger Barn is a fixture that predates many businesses in the downtown area. What is their secret? They just make great tasting hamburgers and offer them at reasonable prices. During the summer The Hamburger Barn hosts various events like classic car shows. Today, come in and support Fort Smith’s best local burger joint.
The Hamburger Barn is located at 317 Garrison Ave Fort Smith, AR 479-782-0233
Pop quiz: you want to catch the big game with your pals, but your wife wants you to go Christmas shopping with her. What do you do? The answer is you go with her and then go meet your friends at Varsity’s Grill. Varsity’s is Downtown Fort Smith’s locally owned sports bar. They have all of the best domestic and imported beers plus well drinks at reasonable prices. Hungry? Varsity’s has a full menu of burgers, wings, sandwiches and steak. Yes Virginia, Varsity’s Grill serves a delicious Kentucky Bourbon Sirloin or Ribeye Steak. If that doesn’t do it for you, then check out Captain Rob’s Meatloaf. This examiner is picky about his meatloaf, but this is a unique take on a classic dish. A big slab of Premium Black Angus and fresh ground pork wrapped in peppercorn bacon and glazed with chili sauce. You won’t find meatloaf like this anywhere else. While there don’t forget to check out the game. Varsity’s broadcasts all of the big schools on Saturday, so you are guaranteed to find your team on the tube. While your wife is buying gifts for the family, go chill with a cold one and some great comfort food while watching the game a Varsity’s.
Varsity’s Grill is located at 318 Garrison Ave Fort Smith, AR 479-494-7173.
Christmas shopping can be fast-paced and hectic. In this high pressure environment, you need to swallow your food before you taste it. For those looking for something fast, yet good, the best place to go is La Huerta. La Huerta is a fast casual Mexican restaurant that offers good food, quick service and reasonable prices. Shoppers on the go can choose simple items like the Speedy Gonzales or the Steven’s Special or more exotic items like Camrones (shrimp). La Huerta also offers premium domestic and imported beers for those extra stressful moments during Small Business Saturday.
La Huerta is located at 400 Garrison Ave Fort Smith, AR 479-783-3655.
Housed in an old-fashioned train car, Boomerang Diner is reminiscent of classic diners from the 1950s. Boomerang Diner serves classic comfort food like burgers, nachos, sandwiches and wings. Boomerang Diner is located inside the Park at West End, a small amusement park that features a carousel and Ferris Wheel from the early 20th Century. If all of this shopping makes you nostalgic for a simpler time, then head down to the Boomerang Diner.
Boomerang Diner is located at 15 North 2nd Street Fort Smith, AR 479-784-9233.
Nothing takes the chill off of a cold fall day like a hot and fresh pizza. Downtown Fort Smith shoppers are in luck, because the area’s best pizza parlor is conveniently located right in the middle of the downtown shopping area. Papa’s Pizzaria offers hand tossed pizza and cold beer in a sports bar like environment that will take the chill off any cold shopping day. While there, be sure to see who is playing that day. Papa’s always has the game on so sports fans will be able to take the time to catch the score or stay for the whole game.
Papa’s Pub and Pizzaria is located at 508 Garrison Ave Fort Smith, AR 479-783-9941.
Celebrate Small Business Saturday
Small Business Saturday is this weekend. It’s the perfect time to shop local and support small businesses throughout the country.