Advertisement

Owner Rekindles Memories Of Dogpatch For Devoted Fans

Bookmark this
07 December, 2018 By Lara Jo Hightower

For nearly 30 years, Dogpatch USA -- the theme park located between Harrison and Jasper on Arkansas 7 -- was a summer staple for children growing up in the general vicinity. It opened in 1968 and was in operation until 1993, with characters and rides based on Al Capps' Lil' Abner cartoons. Twenty years after Earthquake McGoon's Brain Rattler made its last zippy trip around the track, there is an abundance of curiosity and nostalgia for the site, which has passed through the hands of several owners over the years. Acknowledging that interest, current owner Bud Pelsor -- the founder of a spill-proof dog bowl sold through Great American Spillproof Products, located in Harrison -- will be opening the park to visitors on Dec. 15 in an event he's calling a "reunion," since the last time he did this was a few years ago.

"We had somewhere around 7,000 people tour the park [in 2014] -- it was crazy," says Pelsor, who lives on site. "[The attendees] had non-stop stories about their childhood at the park. It made me cry. I literally cried with some of the people [about] their stories. It was an amazing day and overwhelming for all of us -- it was very emotional."

This year's event, says Pelsor, will include music, food and craft vendors.

"We're going to kick the park open and let them see it again -- turn on the lights, play the music loud," says Pelsor.

After dark, an additional ticket price will allow visitors to go on a ghost hunt through the abandoned park with Darknite Paranormal Society.

Pelsor says the success of the first event -- and the continued interest -- inspires him to continue to find ways for Dogpatch USA to stay accessible to its fans.

"All of [the enthusiasm] throughout the four years has given me enough incentive to stay at it," he says. "Otherwise, I would quit. I'm 68, I've had three strokes, I don't know how many heart attacks and an aneurysm. I would quit, but the people won't let me. I feel like I can and will do something, and I have to, because they believe I can and will."


Fourth Anniversary

Riverwalk Reunion

WHEN — Park tours, 11:30 a.m. Dec. 15; ghost hunt, 7-8:30 p.m.

WHERE — Dogpatch USA, Marble Falls Township

COST — $5/person, $10/family; $10/person, $15 couple for ghost hunt

INFO — facebook.com/events/2255613248057039/


Advertisement

Recent Articles

Mandy Moore’s Mindful Tips for a Well-Balanced, Lively Summer

Mandy Moore’s Mindful Tips for a Well-Balanced, Lively Summer

in Food & Drink News

With plans of trips and relaxation on the horizon, it can be easy to give your wellness routine a vacation, too. Take a moment to be consciously aware of how your mind and body may react to an overly active and jam-packed summer schedule.

June 3, 2019

Village Inn Marks 25-Year Anniversary in Fayetteville Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner and Pies Done Right

Village Inn Marks 25-Year Anniversary in Fayetteville Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner and Pies Done Right

in Food & Drink News

May 23rd was the official 25-year anniversary of their Grand Opening, and it was business as usual for the local favorite.

May 31, 2019

Vintage treasure found in eye of the beholder

Vintage treasure found in eye of the beholder

in Community News, Event News

With the huge red barn and the gentle sound of cattle lowing in the background, the Junk Ranch delivers exactly what its website promises: a country barn sale.

May 31, 2019 By Lara Hightower

Concert series expand across Northwest Arkansas

Concert series expand across Northwest Arkansas

in Entertainment News

Sunny summer days and a desire to get outside after the cold has melted away, and more bands living in and coming through the area than you could shake a stick at, and Northwest Arkansas is primed for outdoor concert season.

May 29, 2019 By Jocelyn Murphy

Must Read Articles

Steve Miller, Marty Stuart to perform at Walmart AMP

Steve Miller, Marty Stuart to perform at Walmart AMP

in Entertainment News, Event News

Steve Miller Band and Marty Stuart & His Fabulous Superlatives will bring their "Classic Rock Meets Classic Country Tour" to the Walmart Arkansas Music Pavilion in June as part of the Cox Concert Series.

February 22, 2019 By Best of Northwest Arkansas

Unique skill brings juggler to Festival of Wonder

Unique skill brings juggler to Festival of Wonder

in Entertainment News, Event News

Looking like an hourglass without the frame, the diabolo -- pronounced dee-uh-BO-lo -- is derived from the Chinese yo-yo.

April 15, 2019 By Becca Martin-Brown

State parks mark Native American month at 24 sites

State parks mark Native American month at 24 sites

in Community News

During National Native American Heritage Month, a literal taste of the past will be available.

November 1, 2018 By Jack Schnedler

Advertisement