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For decades, Fort Smith served as the last wagon train stop for supplies before heading out west. Today, thriving retailers are plentiful in the Greater Fort Smith Region. Many shopping destinations are conveniently located and offer everything from daily necessities to specialty items.

When it comes to shopping, Fort Smith is a buyer’s market and a hub of retail activity attracting visitors from the entire Greater Fort Smith Region. The 300,000 residents plus visitors to the region enjoy a wide array of shopping venues and provide for more than 7,000 jobs in the retail, leisure and hospitality industries.

Whether it’s high fashion or low prices, the region boasts open-air and indoor malls, boutiques, one-of-a-kind shops and antique dealers to fit every style and taste. From the quaint-eclectic mix of the historic downtown to the sophistication of the contemporary Fort Smith Pavilion, the opportunities for a shopping adventure are limited only by budgets – and time.

Retailers along the downtown riverfront area of Garrison Avenue provide an assortment of quaint boutiques, flower shops and charming cafes. Clothing stores ranging from consignment to trendy, elegant antique shops and even an Old West cowboy treasure chest dot the downtown area.

There are plenty of locally owned stores to satisfy even the choosiest consumer.

Want the latest in shoe apparel? Try the locally owned Rik’s Shoes. Looking for the next big thing in beauty? The Makeup Lounge offers multiple upscale lines in affordable prices, while Arbonne representative Phyllis Coats can introduce you to an all-natural product line. Both will even help you customize your look with a free makeover. Need a present for the man in your life? Rainwater’s offers contemporary men’s fashion in a personal-service setting.

Garrison Avenue has also been home to Newton’s Jewelers since the jewelry store opened in 1914. Synonymous with excellent quality and service, Newton’s is a third-generation-owned flagship store that carries the exclusive Lazare Kaplan diamonds. Today, Newton’s is truly a family affair and is run by Kelly Newton who works side by side with his wife and three daughters.


A short drive away from the downtown area on Rogers Avenue offers a big city experience with several shopping centers and the region’s largest mall – Central Mall of Fort Smith. With everything from department stores to jewelry boutiques to toyshops to beauty apothecaries, the mall offers something for everyone. National retailers have eagerly joined the retail directory. The region has proved attractive to companies like Target, which now anchors the newly developed Fort Smith Pavilion. Well-known department store names include Dillards, JCPenney, Sears, Kohl’s and Linens N Things. Other national chains include Home Depot, PetsMart, Old Navy and Wal-Mart, with its corporate headquarters just north of Fort Smith.

Outside of Fort Smith, communities like Van Buren and Paris offer an antique haven with rows of shops offering everything from authentic 18th century European furniture to early 1900s American Depression glass and milk bottles.

Want a new car? The current bestseller? A diamond ring? A new tattoo? A musical instrument? We really do have it all. If shopping is your bag, then the Greater Fort Smith Region is definitely the place for you. From boutiques to national department stores, the area can accommodate all of your shopping needs while never venturing too far from home.

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