Fouke: Bigfoot Capital of Arkansas
The mayor of Fouke recently made a declaration deeming Fouke the 'Bigfoot Capital of Arkansas'.
The small town, located in the southwest corner of the state around 15 miles from Texarkana, is well known for the Fouke Monster of The Legend of Boggy Creek fame.
The report of sightings of a Bigfoot type monster in Fouke led to the documentary-style film by Texarkana native Charles Pierce in the early 1970s. The film assured legendary status for the Bigfoot look-alike. The Fouke legend continued to spread beyond the original film via two sequels featuring the 7-foot-tall, ape-like creature that supposedly haunts the swampy Sulphur River bottoms of Miller County, south of Texarkana.
Even if you don't end up spotting the legend for yourself while in town, you don’t have to leave empty-handed. Located at 104 Highway 71 is the Monster Mart. This mart, which is located around two miles from the legendary Boggy Creek, is a convenience store/gas station with a twist. Here you can buy Fouke Monster/ Bigfoot memorabilia and also learn more about the creature and the famous films in a small museum that can be found there. Right next to the Monster Mart is also a spot to grab a bite to eat at aptly called the Boggy Creek Cafe.
The films and legend have had an impact on people around the world and have led to interesting endeavors. The Bigfoot Field Research Organization, the only scientific research organization exploring the Bigfoot mystery and the oldest and largest organization of its kind, was founded in 1995 by a person who first became interested in Bigfoot after seeing The Legend of Boggy Creek as a child.
For those interested in detailed accounts related to the Fouke Monster, Lyle Blackburn, author of The Beast of Boggy Creek and Beyond Boggy Creek, has written a book called Boggy Creek Casebook: Fouke Monster Encounters 1908 to Present. The book lists every known encounter with the monster from the 1900s to now. The title of the book alone stands out in that it spotlights the fact that sightings of the creature have been happening in the area for so long.
A documentary called Boggy Creek Monster also examines the Fouke Monster and is narrated by Blackburn.
An annual Fouke Monster Festival helps keep the creature’s fame alive in town. And ongoing sightings of the creature continue to keep the legend alive too.