Population: 12415 (2010 Census data); 12205 (2014 Estimates)
Source: United States Census Bureau
City of Arkansas City: 118 W. Central Ave. (620) 441-4400
Arkansas City Area Chamber of Commerce: 106 S. Summit St. (620) 442-0230
Arkansas City Convention and Tourism: 106 S. Summit St. (620) 442-0236
Between Rivers, Among Friends
Arkansas City is located at the confluence of the Arkansas and Walnut rivers, on the edge of the beautiful Flint Hills in south-central Kansas. Hence the slogan, “Between Rivers, Among Friends.”
Ark City was the gateway for the 1893 Cherokee Strip Land Rush.
The surroundings may be quiet and peaceful, but the town is on the go with plenty to see and do. Stop by the Arkansas City Chamber and CVB for information.
A recent revitalization of Ark City’s downtown is an expression of the community’s progressive spirit. So is the $4.2 million restoration of the historic Burford Theater into a 900-seat auditorium, accomplished through private fundraising. Restoration of adjoining commercial space is anticipated.
In 2008, voters decided to invest heavily in the town. The town approved a $38.6 million school bond issue to expand and update all of its six elementary schools, make improvements at its high school and middle school, and build brand-new sports facilities for football, tennis and softball. Bulldog Stadium opened in fall 2010. A new, $29 million hospital and adjoining medical office building opened in 2011. Voters also approved public funds to upgrade major roads within the city.
Arkansas City has a city-manager form of municipal government. A five-person commission elected at-large governs the city.
The name of this community is not pronounced like the state, but is pronounced Ar-KAN-sas, with emphasis on the second syllable.
Wilson Park, on Summit Street, the community’s main thoroughfare, hosts an antique Santa Fe engine — suitable for hands-on exploration — which stands as a tribute to the important role of the railroad industry in the community’s history.
It is situated next to the Robert Docking Memorial, honoring one of the state’s most respected governors, a son of Arkansas City.
The city is home to the second-largest community swimming pool in Kansas, 25 public tennis courts, two golf courses and new hiking/biking trails.
Large murals grace a number of downtown buildings. The Chaplin Nature Center, just west of town, has more than five miles of trails that ramble through prairie and woods habitat.
With its substantial agribusiness sector, the Arkansas City economy supports several major industrial employers, including Creekstone Farms, a state-of-the-art beef packing plant, and Kan-Pak, a maker of packaged frozen beverages and deserts, Skyline Homes, manufactured housing and Jet AirWerks, jet-engine repair station. Just five minutes to the north is Strother Field, where many Ark City residents work in businesses such as the General Electric jet-engine overhaul facility; Western Industries, a plastics blowmolder; and Morton Buildings, maker of prefabricated farm buildings.
The area around Ark City offers a number of excellent opportunities for outdoor recreation, particularly hunting and fishing. Two such facilities are the Cowley County State Lake and the Kaw Wildlife Area along the Arkansas River. Seven miles east of Ark City, on a bluff overlooking the Arkansas River, Camp Horizon is available for indoor and outdoor recreational and social gatherings.
Cowley College, just west of downtown Arkansas City, offers quality education at an affordable price. With residential students in Ark City and outreach centers in nearby Winfield and Mulvane, the college typically enrolls about 5,200 students. It is home to the area’s vocational school that offers training in fields from welding, computer design and health care. The Brown Center at the college is the county’s largest, most modern auditorium for cultural events, concerts and plays. Cowley College was the 1997 and 1998 Junior College World Series champion in baseball. For more information call (620) 442-0430.
Having fun in Ark City has always been a priority. Arkalalah, an Indian word meaning “good times,” is the largest annual festival. Fueled by hundreds of volunteers and presided over by Queen Alalah, it takes place just before Halloween. The last and biggest car show in the region, the Last Run Car Show, often sees more than 1,000 antique and styled cars participate.
Established in 1906, the Arkansas City Public Library is home to more than 73,000 items. The Cherokee Strip Land Rush Museum displays tools, crafts, documents and clothing from the late 1800s, when the land rush took place. The museum is also home to the Cowley County Genealogical Library. Visitors can experience history through commemorative artifacts of The Run, Native Americans, pioneers and the history of Cowley County.
Below is a list of services and organizations that you may wish to contact in Arkansas City (Local area code: 620)
Agri-Business Building Reservations – 441-4401
Animal Shelter – 442-1698
Appraiser (County) – 441-4550
Arkansas City Public Library – 442-1280
Arkansas City Senior Center – 441-4419
Barking dogs or dogs on the loose – 441-4488
Birth Certificates, State of Kansas – 785-296-1400
Cable TV service, Cox Communications – 442-2280
Chamber of Commerce (Arkansas City Area) – 442-0230
City of Arkansas City – 441-4400
County Landfill – 221-4307
Cowley College information – 442-0430
Discolored Water – 441-4480
Driver’s License (and renewal) – 221-7793
Elections in Cowley County – 441-4515
Electric Service to business or residence, Westar – 800-383-1183
Emergencies, Dial 911
Flood Plain Information – 441-4420
Gas Service to business or residence, Kansas Gas Service – 800-794-4780
Health Department – City/Cowley County Health Department – 442-3260
Household hazardous waste disposal – 441-4460
Landlord/Tenant problems – 441-4420
Marriage Licenses – 441-4520
Noise Complaints – 441-4444
Occupational Licenses (contractors/journeyman/mechanical) – 441-4420
Paris Park Shelter Reservations – 441-4470
Police Department (ACPD) – 441-4444
Post Office (Arkansas City) – 442-1080
Road maintenance questions within City limits – 441-4460
Schools (see yellow pages under “Schools: Parochial, Private, Public)
Street lights burned out – 441-4415
Street light requests (for placement of new lights) – 441-4415
Swimming Pool (public) – 441-4417
Telephone service – Business Customers AT&T: 800-499-7928
Telephone service – Residence Customers AT&T: 800-464-7928
Traffic Signal problems – 441-4460
Traffic Ticket Payment (Municipal Court) – 441-4408
Trash and Debris accumulation – 441-4420
Trash Hauling – 441-4407
Tree Limbs following a storm – 441-4460
Vehicle tag licensing (and renewal) – 441-4510
Voter registration – 441-4515
Water main breaks – 441-4480