Urban Hike Highlights Inspirational Murals the Whole Family Can Enjoy

The power of public art is prominent in Rogers, Arkansas. Muralists are taking over the parks, brick buildings, and pretty much everything in between to resemble the thriving creative community in Northwest Arkansas. This is the perfect setting for those seeking an outdoor adventure while staying in the city.

Murals not only contribute to making a place attractive and creating opportunities for economic growth and spikes in tourism, but they also play a part in revitalizing forgotten gathering spaces and spark new conversations in the community. There are over 10 public murals in Rogers and a few others you can see at local shops, restaurants, and bars.

Railcar

In 2016 the city commissioned world-renowned artist Lucas Aoki for custom murals on a railcar at the Railyard Bike Park, 299 E. Cherry Street. Aoki's love for nature and ability to incorporate mysterious, wonder-filled worlds with strong elements of surrealism and fantasy ranging from playful to darkness reflect in his artwork with one-of-a-kind creatures that capture the heart of viewers.

Coca-Cola

There are two classic Coca-Cola murals found in downtown Rogers, on the corner of Second and Walnut Street on the east side of the Avenue Design Company building and on the corner of First and Elm Street. The murals have a retro aesthetic and are sure to have you reminiscing the days it was sold for just 5 cents.

Bleu Girl

Bleu Girl was created for the Urban Bleu Hair Salon at 113 W. Elm Street in Historic Downtown Rogers. Gravette artists Andy Wallace and Holly Wallace were commissioned by salon owners to complete the wall mural on the west side of the business October 2016.

Daisy Airgun Museum

Located at 202 W. Walnut Street on the exterior wall of the museum is a vintage style mural of a boy holding an original Daisy Airgun. Daisy Airgun Museum is also home to the World's Largest Daisy BB Gun, a 25-foot sculpture installed, standing up, against the east wall of the museum.

Rosa Parks 1955

Artist Samuel Hale created this powerful statement at the corner of W. Walnut and Arkansas Street in downtown Rogers. The mural gives recognition to Rosa Parks and the historical date of December 1, 1955 when she refused to give up her seat on a Montgomery bus and was arrested and jailed for two months. She sparked a bus boycott that lasted 381 days and the movement that declared segregation illegal and unconstitutional and eventually the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and Voting Rights Act of 1965.

Rogers Skatepark

The skatepark ramps, found at 315 W. Olive Street, were Graham Edwards first mural gig in Arkansas back in 2017. He fell in love with the area and shortly after moved to Bella Vista and has been busy painting Northwest Arkansas (NWA) since then.

The most recent installations encompass the entire park at the Rogers Activity Center (RAC) at 315 W. Olive Street and at the Railyard Park's WaterStop (mentioned below). Graham's love of bold colors, clean lines, and unique skills translate through his work and transform gathering places in the community.

Outback Cathouse

Shelby Nichols, a Rogers native donated her time in partnership with the Rogers Experimental House who donated the paint for the project on the south wall of The Outback Cathouse Rescue located at 103 N. 11th Street. The mural assists in telling the non-profit's mission, "to assist in the placement of homeless cats in Northwest Arkansas" and through art encourages and represents, the joy of animal adoption.

Earth to Mars

Graham Edwards revitalized the Olive Street Park basketball court at 2424 W. Olive Street with his representation of the distance between the two planetary siblings. Graham recently picked up new representation with The Art Collective Gallery in downtown Rogers where a wide range of mediums and artists are represented.

WaterStop

The newly renovated Railyard Park once known as the Frisco Park at the heart of downtown Rogers has three water towers, one with a digital feature called a watermark that allows for the projection of patterns and messages. Artists Ocatavio Logo with installation assistance from Jason Jones, Mantra, and Lakwena with Graham Edwards installing her piece were selected by the Rogers Public Art Commission to produce original artworks.

Icehouse

With a Grant by the Walton Family Foundation and a partnership with Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, the mural was completed in April 2019 by Rich Simmons an English artist residing in London with a graffiti background who frequently features images that look like they were pulled directly from a comic book. The Old Icehouse Building, 500 S. Arkansas Street, is prominent in the history of the area dating back to the 1890s and is now an added backdrop to downtown Rogers. The 50 ft. mural was Simmons largest ever completed and inspired by Leonardo Da Vinci while combining his own style of street art, pop art, and a take on the Renaissance. The mural is a woman wearing sunglasses with the images of Da Vinci's "Mona Lisa" on each Lens.

Check out the murals inside these Rogers establishments:
Comida Artesenal Tapas Bar
Meme's Caribbean Flavour
Moonbroch Pub
Yeyo's Mezcaleria y Taqueria

(Photo by Brad Stallcup with Minim Design Co)


While on the urban hike through Rogers, be sure to snap some photos and tag @visitrogersar on Instagram and @VisitRogers on Facebook and use #rogersrocks #rogersarkansas #nwaart on social media platforms.