July 21, 2021
Randy Zellers Assistant Chief of Communications
ROGERS — Rifle and handgun shooters now can access a redesigned, renovated and reopened shooting range at Hobbs State Park Conservation Area near here following a two-year rebuilding project. Arkansas State Parks officially reopened the doors to the range in June. The range features five shooting lanes of 100 yards in length, including one lane designated for wheelchair use. Use of the facility is free.
“There is great demand for public shooting ranges, especially near large population centers,” Chris Colclasure, Arkansas Game and Fish Commission deputy director, said. “The Hobbs range will serve a great need for the public in northwest Arkansas.”
The range is about 9 miles from Rogers, 14 miles from Bentonville and about a 30-mile drive from Fayetteville. The range was closed two years ago due to safety concerns, requiring an evaluation of the range design and operations. The resulting redesign and major rehabilitation cost $126,555, with the money coming from an Arkansas Natural and Cultural Council grant, according to Grady Spann, director of Arkansas State Parks.
“We understand how important this shooting range is to the community and we’re glad to be reopening it,” Spann said in June.
The park provides target holders that can be positioned at 25, 50, 75 or 100 yards. The shooting range is designed for rifles and handguns, but is not designed for shotgun use.
“We are excited to reopen the shooting range, especially knowing that it has been sorely missed by 8,000 to 10,000 annual park visitors. We appreciate the patience of our range users as we made these improvements,” Mark Clippinger, Hobbs State Park Conservation Area superintendent, said.
The shooting range is near the intersection of Arkansas Highway 12 and Highway 303 North. The hours are 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday; the range is closed Mondays for maintenance. It will also close for permitted hunting seasons on the conservation area: five days in November, five days in December and two days in January.
Shooters are asked to use only paper or cardboard targets and wooden clothespins. The range is unsupervised, and shooters are asked to communicate with others to safely use the facility.
Established in 1979, Hobbs State Park Conservation Area is Arkansas’s largest state park, spanning a 12,054-acre tract of Ozark landscape in Benton, Madison and Carroll counties, with Beaver Lake to its west and north. The day-use park includes a diverse 54-mile trail system with hiking, ADA, mountain biking and horseback riding trails; and 11 primitive campsites, six of which are accessible by mountain biking. It’s the only state park in Arkansas that allows regulated hunting.