FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – The City of Fayetteville was honored this week by the Arkansas Recreation and Parks Association, which named Centennial Park its’ 2022 Outdoor Facility of the Year.
Representatives of the City’s Parks, Natural Resources and Cultural Affairs Department were on hand at the Association’s Annual Conference in Little Rock to receive the award. Centennial Park won in the Over $500,000 category.
Centennial Park is a 228-acre, cycling-activated park with state-of-the-art cyclocross and mountain biking amenities that were built for world-class events. The park features two trailheads, a large pavilion, a restroom facility, and more than 14 miles of soft-surface trails for all skill levels of mountain biking, cyclocross riding, trail running, youth cross-country running, and hiking.
“Centennial Park is a tremendous asset to the City of Fayetteville and Northwest Arkansas cycling community,” said Alison Jumper, director of Parks, Natural Resources and Cultural Affairs. “Along with expanding Fayetteville’s cycling infrastructure, it is a unique attraction that boosts tourism and further improves the quality of life for residents.”
The property atop Millsap Mountain was purchased in 2018 for $3.3 million with a 50-50 matching grant and an interest-free loan from the Walton Family Foundation. In 2019, Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI), the world governing body for the sport of cycling, announced it would hold its 2022 Cyclocross World Championships in Fayetteville at Centennial Park – only the second time the event has been held in the United States. The three-day event in January 2022 saw nearly 20,000 people in attendance to cheer 219 cyclists from 21 nations.
UCI also held its 2021 Cyclocross World Cup at Centennial Park, and it will also be the host site for UCI’s 2022 Cyclocross World Cup in October 2022. Since opening in 2020, Centennial Park also has hosted the Arkansas Enduro Mountain Bike Series, National Interscholastic Cycling Association State Mountain Bike Championship, and the USA Cycling Pro Cup Mountain Bike Series.
To learn more about Centennial Park, go to https://www.fayetteville-ar.gov/3671/Centennial-Park-at-Millsap-Mountain.