Country Style Living by Bob Coleman in Monte Ne, Arkansas

Monte Ne, located on the shores of Beaver Lake, is located about five miles outside Rogers, Arkansas. From 1901 to 1931 Monte Ne, which was founded by William Coin Harvey, was a health resort. It was tough to have the largest hotel in the world. These hotels were known as Missouri Row and Oklahoma Row. The tower pictured is the last remaining structure of Oklahoma Row. In 1964 the White river was dammed to create Beaver Lake, a water supply for local residents. This covered much of the Monte Ne town and resort which included a huge amphitheater and concrete pyramid.

Name:Bob Coleman

Corporate and Editorial freelance photographer


My preoccupation is split between shooting art photography and playing blues harmonica since I was was in seventh grade. I had been playing harmonic since I was five years old. Arkansas has quite a history of blues music and was home to some of the greatest of the Delta blues players who crossed the Mississippi River between Arkansas and Mississippi. I spend my time playing with band and a duo.

Tell us about Monte Ne:

I live in an area of Arkansas known as The Ozarks, named for the mountain range which extends through southern Missouri and northwest Arkansas. The cities of Northwest Arkansas are surrounded by pristine rivers and beautiful national parks. It is a great location for those who love hiking, biking, camping and fishing. Two and a half hours east from Rogers are two internationally famous trout rivers, the White River and the Norfork River. Both homes to world record trout.

A perfect day?

A perfect day in Monte Ne starts by waking up to a beautiful sunrise over Beaver Lake, stepping out onto the back deck and seeing all the wildlife enjoying the morning. The deer are plentiful, as is the bird population of both local and migrating birds. We even have American Bald Eagles that come to the area in the winter. After a good breakfast, hopping onto my motorcycle with a camera in my saddle bags and heading out on the back country roads around Monte Ne. Then coming home in the evening and having dinner at the very popular Monte Ne Chicken restaurant.

What is the best thing about Monte Ne?

The best part about Monte Ne is the country-style living. It is close enough to four Northwest Arkansas cities to have the shopping conveniences of the cities without the overcrowding of major cities.

What is the worst?

The area is still considered to be a small market and sometimes limits access to restaurants and stores of bigger areas.

What would be surprising about Monte Ne to an outsider?

The biggest surprise to this place is that it is home to some of the latest corporations in the world, Tyson Foods and Walmart.

If Monte Ne was a person or character who would it be?

Sheriff Andy Griffith.

Who are three of your favorite artists?

Only three? Wow… Contemporary portrait photographer Gregory Heisler, long-time editorial photographer Joe McNally, and blues harmonica player James Cotton.


Name:Bob Coleman

City:Monte Ne

Favorite place to eat:

My favorite is a little Mexican restaurant, Taqueria Vega. Rogers has a large Mexican population and there are dozens of little taquerias in the area serving authentic Mexican meals.

Favorite place to drink:

Favorite bar is George’s Majestic Lounge in Fayetteville, a few miles from Monte Ne and Rogers. Until a couple of years ago, Benton County was a dry county – no liquor.

Favorite shop:

Any of the antique stores and flea markets. There are quite a few throughout the city.

Local Tip:

There are several micro-breweries and lots more popping up. Taste the fine local beers.

Must Do:

Take the time to visit Crystal Bridge Art Museum in Bentonville. This a world-class museum of American art. Oh, and it’s FREE!