The Second Annual Ark-La-Tex Outdoor Expo will commence with Classic Rock band 38-Special as the headline act this Friday, February 2, at Hempstead Hall for a two-day run that will include Saturday.

The Second Annual Ark-La-Tex Outdoor Expo will commence with Classic Rock band 38-Special as the headline act this Friday, February 2, at Hempstead Hall for a two-day run that will include Saturday.
Dolly Henley, director of Hempstead Hall, said, “This will be our second Expo and we look forward to over twenty vendors with a great variety of information and merchandise. I feel that this Expo is a good fit for our regional service area because we have so many people in the ARK-LA-TEX who enjoy the outdoors.”
Last year’s first Expo saw over 800 attendees during the opening Friday, which included a Craig Morgan country concert. The combined two-day estimate of over 1,460 people flowed into Hempstead Hall for the two days, Friday and Saturday, in 2017 as an unusual winter cold snap occurred.
Henley recalled, “The temperature was in the upper 40's during the Expo last year, which happened to be the coolest days we've had at the time. The week before we experienced 70 degree weather. The weather is always unpredictable.”
In 2017, some vendors had been stationed on the grounds around Hempstead Hall, while some were inside.  This year, vendors will be on the second floor of Hempstead Hall as well as the main lobby.
Henley touted Expo’s variety of booths and educational exhibits of interest to all outdoorsmen.
“The participating vendors will have boats, all-terrain vehicles, tractors, travel trailers, duck and turkey calls, cabin lamps, leather goods, fishing lures, archery equipment, knives, lawn mowers, and even jewelry for those who enjoy the great outdoors,” she said.
“The idea of an Outdoor Expo was on the original list of events to attract to Hempstead Hall before the facility was built,” Henley said, “Last year, the vendors were pleased with the turn out for the first year and thought the facility worked great for the Expo. Several vendors asked for their same spot this time.”
Henley said the list of vendors for 2018 include Rothwell Marine, Hope Tractor, Petitt Machinery, Parrish Equipment, Gregg Orr Marine & RV, Futrell Marine, Backyard Pools, Big Green Egg, Texarkana Gun Club, Baits and Blades, Townsend Outdoors, Cato Lamps, Eddie Horton Turkey Calls, Big Cat Baits, Ron's Wood Shop, Hope Outdoor Power & Equip. Red River Federal Credit Union, Rowe's Leather, Bob Erwin, Archery Addiction, Juanita’s, Taylor Creek, Leaffilter Gutter and Ambetter.
After bringing mostly Country headliners into the region the past few years, Henley said that the inclusion of 38-Special is “Something new for us.” and adding “We are excited to bring them in; there is a big audience of Classic Rock and Southern Rock listeners in our service area.”
Henley said tickets for 38-Special are on sale now and range from $20 to $75 and include admission to the Ark-La-Tex Outdoor Expo for February 2 and 3.  Admission to only the Ark-La-Tex Expo is just $3.00, she said.
A related story on 38 Special can be see elsewhere in today’s Hope Star.