dinosaur park AR

Giant Dinosaurs Can Be Found Deep in the Ozark Mountains of Arkansas

The Natural State is home to many creatures including giant dinosaurs that can be found deep in the Ozark Mountains of Northwest Arkansas.

Back in 1967, Ola Farwell had a crazy idea to start a dinosaur park. Emmet Sullivan was then hired to build 6 to10 life-sized replicas of dinosaurs. The park was appropriately named “Farwell’s Dinosaur Park.”

Just a few years later, the park was sold to Ken Childs who named it “John Agar’s Land of Kong.”

The former entrance to Dinosaur World in Arkansas
The former entrance to Dinosaur World. Stef/Creative Commons

“That’s when a 40 ft. tall statue of King Kong, known as the “World’s Largest King Kong,” was built. The owner, a friend of film actor John Agar, received permission from John Agar to use his name in the name of the park. John Agar had appeared in the 1976 version of King Kong. Many articles report that John Agar was either the owner or part owner, but he was never either one.” -source

abandoned dinosaur statue in Arkansas
This abandoned dinosaur statue is quite frightening! Kenzie Campbell/Creative Commons

Emmet Sullivan designed all of the dinosaurs in this Arkansas dinosaur park as well as the statues in the famous Wall Drug in South Dakota and the Christ of the Ozarks statue in Eureka Springs, Arkansas. Mr. Sullivan was an apprentice to one of the sculptors of the Mount Rushmore monument.

dinosaur statues in dinosaur world arkansas
Dinosaur statues can be spotted on the hillside. Kenzie Campbell/Creative Commons

“Emmet Sullivan, (May 27, 1887 – November 3, 1970) was an American sculptor. He was born in Powder River, Montana, and claimed to have worked on Mount Rushmore. He created the five dinosaurs in Dinosaur Park in Rapid City, South Dakota in 1934, his first large-scale project. His other dinosaur creations were the Apatosaurus at Wall Drug in Wall, South Dakota in the late 1960s, and the many dinosaurs of Dinosaur World in Beaver, Arkansas. In 1966 Sullivan sculpted the 20 meter tall Christ of the Ozarks statue in Eureka Springs, Arkansas.” -Wikipedia

Cavemen at John Agar's Land of Kong
Cavemen at John Agar’s Land of Kong. Daniel Weber/Creative Commons

“Two local men, A. C. McBride and Orvis Parker handled the actual construction of the dinosaurs.” -source

Eventually, the theme park contained 100 life-sized sculptures of dinosaurs, cavemen and other prehistoric creatures. The world’s largest Noah’s Ark mural painted by local artist Will Johnson was also located here.

T-Rex at Dinosaur World in Arkansas. Jonathan Ball/Creative Commons

Unfortunately, Dinosaur World closed in 2005.

Today, Dinosaur World looks like an abandoned Jurassic Park in Arkansas. It is on private property and no longer open to the public. These 65 acres of beautiful Ozark Mountain land have been returned to nature and the giant dinosaurs are fading into the landscape.

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