As the largest city in northeastern Arkansas and the fifth-most-populous city in the state, Jonesboro is a regional hub for manufacturing, medicine and education. The city, nestled in the rolling hills of Crowley's Ridge, is a progressive destination, and Jonesboro event venues include art galleries, restaurants and cultural attractions.
While Jonesboro is mainly a drive-to destination, groups using Lambert-St. Louis International (STL) can fly to Jonesboro Municipal Airport (JBR).
As home to Arkansas State University, it's no surprise that the largest of Jonesboro convention venues is the Convocation Center at ASU, a popular spot for trade shows, seasonal events and musical performances. Its 33,000-square-foot arena floor has capacity for 1,000 guests banquet-style. Its three meeting rooms, when combined, can accommodate up to 400 guests theater-style, or 290 guests banquet-style. The center's mezzanine levels can also accommodate up to 280 guests (north/south) or 640 guests (east/west). Groups at the ASU Convocation Center will also enjoy free parking at 1,300 on-site spots, a wide variety of concessions and expert catering from Sodexo Dining Services.
Hotel venues in Jonesboro include the 179-room Holiday Inn, Jonesboro, with 10,000 square feet of meeting space; the 109-room Hilton Garden Inn Jonesboro, with 4,000 square feet of meeting space; and the 130-room Park Place Inn, with 3,000 square feet of meetings space.
ASU is home to a number of other unique Jonesboro event venues. Part of the College of Fine Arts, the Fowler Center is home to musical performances, experimental theater, traveling art exhibitions and more. The Fowler Center has three spaces for rent—a 972-seat hall, 342-seat theater and a 45-foot-by-90-foot banquet space—that are sure to add artistic flair to any event. About an hour away in Piggott, Arkansas, ASU's Hemingway-Pfeiffer Museum explores the home and studio of the famed writer and his second wife, Pauline. Renovated with a focus on the 1930s era, this historic landmark's barn-studio and lawn can accommodate 20 to 300 guests for dinners and receptions, while its conference room can seat 16 people.
Jonesboro has a number of interesting event venues outside of ASU. The Forum Theatre, an active civic center, offers first-class lighting, projection and audio-visual equipment and is an affordable option for presentations and seminars. RidgePointe Country Club, which features an 18-hole golf course, five tennis courts and a pool, has a professional and upscale atmosphere for business meetings and luncheons. Groups can also enjoy the great outdoors in Jonesboro with an event at Lake Frierson State Park, located about 10 miles north of downtown. Situated among the rolling hills of Crowley's Ridge, the park offers a 2,400-square-foot enclosed pavilion for rent, overlooking that lake, with restrooms, ceiling fans, electrical outlets and a grill.
After the end of a long day, groups can kick back at one of Jonesboro's many fine restaurants. Located in historic downtown, Godsey's Grill is available for private events and has professional service and a variety of classic entrees done right. Loretta's Restaurant offers full-service event space for 50 to 100 guests as well as off-site catering. Specializing in home-cooking-style meals, Gina's Placealso offers catering in addition to its storefront. Its "just like Grandma would make it" menu includes true Southern classics such as chicken-fried steak, meatloaf, mashed potatoes and pineapple upside-down cake.
Photo by Wikimedia Commons user: Zereshk