Blog Archives

Quick Picks: Mac-O-Lanterns, Boo!seum Bash, more



Fantastic Cinema presents Fantastically Horrifying Shorts at The Studio Theater from 7-9:45 p.m. The brainchild of the Film Society of Little Rock, Fantastic Cinema will show 18 short films in celebration of Halloween. Films include J.T. Seaton’s The Peripheral, Jerry Ochoa’s This Neighborhood and more. Tickets are $8.


Metro museums host the annual Big Boo!seum Bash from 6-8:30 p.m. Now in its 20th year, the bash will have several downtown locations — including the Arkansas Arts Center, the Mosaic Templars Cultural Center and more — providing a safe place for families to trick-or-treat and engage in games and other activities. The Old State House Museum’s Big Boo!seum’s theme is Monsters! A free shuttle to the locations will be provided.


The Clinton Presidential Center hosts a “culinary experience unlike any other” when The Next Course Fundraiser fills its Great Hall at 6 p.m. in support of Youth Home. As the meal moves from wine reception to five-course dining experience, executive chefs Shane Henderson and Stephen Burrow will provide instruction preparing the courses. Seating is limited to 192 guests, and tickets are $125.


Balloon Glow and Mac-O-Lanterns begins at 5:30 p.m. with pumpkin carving and tethered balloon … Read more >

Quick Picks: Mud Run, Fountain Fest, more

Arkansas Democrat-Gazette file photo

Arkansas Democrat-Gazette file photo


The Charity Olive Hour features a live and silent auction at Next Level Events to support Special Olympics Arkansas. There will be 10 live-auction items, as well as more than 350 silent-auction goodies that athletes across Arkansas have created. The event’s $30 entry fee also includes hors d’oeuvres and complimentary drinks. Tickets are $25 in advance, $30 at the door.


The Arkansas Arts Center’s third annual Fountain Fest presents another unveiling of the work of the center’s art-design-contest winner. Fountain Fest also features tastes from ZAZA Fine Salad & Wood-Oven Pizza Co., David’s Burgers and Cupcakes on Kavanaugh. A Louis Vuitton purse worth more than $1,200 will be raffled. The outdoor fest takes place around the Carrie Remmel Dickinson fountain at the center. Tickets are $40.


Arkansas Life magazine presents The Modern Arkansas Table Launch and Tasting Party at Loft 1023 in downtown Little Rock from 6-8 p.m. The Modern Arkansas Table is the magazine’s first-ever cookbook and features 40 recipes from some of Arkansas’ best chefs. The admission fee to the launch event includes a recipe tasting, a copy of the book, drinks and a three-month subscription to Arkansas Life. … Read more >

Quick Picks: ‘Spelling Bee,’ Senior Expo, more

Tommy Martinez as Chip Tolentino in The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee

Tommy Martinez as Chip Tolentino in The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee


W.O.W.APALOOZA returns to support Women’s Own Worth, an organization that offers financial support, therapy and programs to those affected by domestic violence and other violent crimes. The fundraiser — which includes drinks, dinner and a silent auction — takes place at the Governor’s Mansion from 6-8 p.m. Tickets are $50.


The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee opens at the Arkansas Repertory Theatre at 8 p.m. The Tony Award-winning comedic musical follows junior high students on the cutthroat quest of becoming a spelling bee champion while dealing with the nuances of adolescence. Opening night includes a post-show reception with champagne and hors d’oeuvres. Tickets are $30-$55.


Our America: The Latino Presence in American Art opens to the public at the Arkansas Arts Center. The exhibit features 93 works of modern and contemporary Latino art provided by the Smithsonian American Art Museum in Washington, D.C. The Arts Center is open 10 a.m to 5 p.m. Tuesday to Saturday and 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday.


The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette Senior Expo takes place from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Statehouse Convention Center. … Read more >

Quick Picks: ‘Puss in Boots,’ Dining in the Dark, more

Submitted Photo

Puss in Boots rehearsal | Submitted Photo


The Arkansas Hospitality Vendor Showcase & Convention takes place from 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Statehouse Convention Center. A joint effort from the Arkansas Restaurant Association, the Arkansas Travel Council and the Arkansas Lodging Association, the showcase features seminars and training to help attendees improve running a business in the restaurant or tourism industry. A bartending competition and gala will take place. Entry is $5.


The Arkansas Lighthouse for the Blind marks 75 years with Dining in the Dark, a dinner experience that teaches how darkness enhances one’s senses, at Noah’s Event Venue from 6:30-9 p.m. The fundraiser supports the Arkansas Lighthouse for the Blind’s mission of employing individuals who are blind and visually impaired. The event also includes a lighted reception and auction. Tickets are $150.


The Arkansas Arts Center Children’s Theatre kicks off its season with Puss in Boots, which runs Friday through Oct. 4 but holds a special Pay-What-You-Can preview night Thursday at 7 p.m. The family-friendly musical follows Puss the Cat as he uses his feline smarts to conquer obstacles and help lift his owner’s spirits. A $1 minimum is required … Read more >

Rumpelstiltskin opens at Children’s Theatre


Friday is the opening production of Rumpelstiltskin by the Arkansas Arts Center’s Children’s Theatre. The center presents the Brothers Grimm fairy tale Fridays at 7 p.m. and Saturdays and Sundays at 2 p.m. through Feb. 8. Tickets for adults and children are $12.50.

For more information, visit

 … Read more >

Quick Picks: Big Buck Classic + concerts, screenings, theater openings

Bill Krallman hangs a deer mount for a contest display at the Arkansas Big Buck Classic in 2011. The event is the largest deer hunting expo in the state. / Arkansas Democrat-Gazette file photo


Lunch with TED at Ron Robinson: Free screening, begins at noon. More info here.


Argenta Acoustic Music Series: Al Petteway at The Joint, $20, begins at 7:30 p.m.


The Magic Flute by Mozart at Albert Pike Masonic Center; 7 p.m. both days, $25 general admission


Screening of Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark at Ron Robinson Theater, $5. Begins at 7 p.m. More info here.


Cat on a Hot Tin Roof opens at Precipice Theatre: 7:30 p.m., tickets are $14 for adults (show continues on weekends through Feb. 1)


Opening night of The Whipping Man at The Rep; curtain is at 8 p.m., and show dates continue through Feb. 8.


Opening of Rumpelstiltskin at Arkansas Arts Center. Show runs through Feb. 8, and tickets are $12.50 for adults and children.


Big Buck Classic at the Arkansas State Fair Complex, featuring a  Chili Cook-off at Barton Coliseum from 10:30 a.m. to 2 p.m.… Read more >

Arkansas Arts Center announces Tabriz 2015

Screen Shot 2015-01-13 at 3.23.59 PM

The Arkansas Arts Center has officially announced details for Tabriz 2015, the biennial fundraising event that secures funding for the center’s exhibits and educational programs.

Tabriz is a twofold event. First, the Bazaar of Tabriz on March 12 features a silent auction, drinks, hot dogs and snacks. According to a news release, the auction will feature more than 300 items ranging from parties to travel opportunities, art and antiques. Tickets are $50 per person.

Second, the Gala of Tabriz is a black-tie affair held in the Townsend Wolfe and Jeannette Edris Rockefeller galleries on March 14. The release indicates the event will be “fresh, exotic, creative, different and at the same time, authentic.” Tickets are $750 per person, and only 350 tickets are available.

All proceeds benefit the Arkansas Arts Center. For more details, visit… Read more >

Velveteen Rabbit opens at AAC Children’s Theatre


Sure, there are some pretty dark themes in Margery Williams’ story of a beloved stuffed rabbit that is going to be burned after its owner comes down with a nasty case of scarlet fever. But The Velveteen Rabbit remains a family favorite. The Arkansas Arts Center Children’s Theatre presents a stage adaptation opening the day after Thanksgiving. Performances are 7 p.m. Fridays, 2 p.m. and 4 p.m. Saturdays, and 2 p.m. Sundays through Dec. 21. Tickets for children and adults are $12.50 each.… Read more >

8 holiday shopping alternatives in central Arkansas

Christmas shopping doesn't have to be like this. I promise. (Arkansas Democrat-Gazette file photo)

Christmas shopping doesn’t have to be like this. I promise. (Arkansas Democrat-Gazette file photo)

Like it or not, there’s no denying that it’s beginning to look a little bit like Christmas. But if thinking about completing your holiday shopping gives you nightmares of lines at the mall and crowded parking lots at big-box stores, consider these creative, local alternatives (and sleep in on Black Friday!).

Dazzle Daze

Girls’ Nite Out: Thursday, Nov. 20 (6-9 p.m.)

Friday, Nov. 21 (10 a.m. to 9 p.m.) and Saturday, Nov. 22 (10 a.m. to 4 p.m.)

The Conway Regional Women’s Council brings its annual holiday shopping extravaganza, Dazzle Daze, back to Conway at the Conway Expo Center. More than 85 merchants from around the country sell everything from gourmet food items to holiday decorations. Tickets for Girls’ Nite Out are $25, and a general shopping pass is $5.… Read more >

Beat the heat in July with 8 cool art experiences

July is here and it’s hot. Surprise! Looking for a way to cool off that doesn’t involve the mall, the movie theater or a crowded pool?  Retreat to one of these galleries (or art-based events) for a shot of culture instead.


Clinton Presidential Center: May 17 to Jan. 5

See stunning works by world-renowned glass artist Dale Chihuly. Chihuly is credited with elevating glass blowing from a craft to a fine art, and he’s know for his huge chandelier installations as well as his standing reeds, both of which can be seen in this temporary exhibit at the Clinton Presidential Center.

Chihuly at the Clinton Presidential Center. Photo by Stephanie Maxwell

Chihuly at the Clinton Presidential Center. Photo by Stephanie Maxwell

56th annual Delta Exhibition

Arkansas Arts Center: June 27 to Sept. 28

The Delta Exhibition of Painting and Sculpture features contemporary work by artists from Arkansas and its bordering states. Works in the exhibition were chosen from more than 1,300 images from 468 artists. See pieces of art that represent the region and its spirit from some of the areas most accomplished and up-and-coming artists in the South and Midwest.… Read more >

Arkansas Arts Center Museum School Sale Saturday at Metroplex

Marianne Kirksey from Conway checks out the watercolor painting by artist Delia Prather while Kirksey was shopping at the Arkansas Arts Center Museum School Sale on Saturday. The sale included pottery, paintings, photography, jewelry and wood pieces of original works by the Arkansas Arts Center Museum School faculty and students.  Arkansas Democrat-Gazette/KAREN E. SEGRAVE

Arkansas Democrat-Gazette/KAREN E. SEGRAVE
Marianne Kirksey from Conway checks out the watercolor painting by artist Delia Prather while Kirksey was shopping at the 2007 Arkansas Arts Center Museum School Sale.

More than 100 Arkansas Arts Center Museum School instructors and students will be on hand selling original artwork at the Museum School Sale Saturday at the Clear Channel Metroplex. The sale is free and open to the public from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday and offers unique and affordable photography, paintings, pottery, jewelry, woodwork, fused glass, metalwork and more. Pieces make great Christmas, birthday or hostess gifts if you’re not in the market to collect art of your own. (But really, why wouldn’t you be? The Museum School is home to some amazing local talent.)

If you’re a member of the Arts Center, be sure to catch the special members-only preview Friday from 6-9 p.m.  The night provides the first pick of this year’s sale items, as well as refreshments. Memberships will be sold at the door and online if you’re not already a member.

For more information, visit the Arkansas Arts Center’s website.… Read more >

John Logan’s Red opens at The Rep

Joe Graves and Chris Wendelken

Joe Graves and Chris Wendelken

The Rep’s most recent production, Red, about mid-century abstract expressionist Mark Rothko, opens Friday and continues its run through Nov. 10. In conjunction with The Rep, the Arkansas Arts Center opens its exhibit Mark Rothko in the 1940s: The Decisive Decade this week as well.

You can read more about the play (and its partnership with the Arkansas Arts Center) in this week’s issue, but here are some outtakes from an interview with director Robert Hupp and actors Joe Graves (Mark Rothko) and Chris Wendelken (Rothko’s apprentice, Ken) about Mark Rothko as an artist, the storyline in Red and what it’s like on stage with a cast of only two:

 … Read more >

Installation artist speaks at Arkansas Arts Center

By now you’ve probably seen the yarn bomb at the Arkansas Arts Center that went up mid-September. The installation is one of the largest yarn bombs in the country, second only to the Andy Warhol Bridge in Pittsburgh, yarn bombed in August. The AAC installation covers 1,200 square feet at the front of the museum as well as 10 surrounding trees and nine light poles.

Yarn bomb installation at Arkansas Arts Center

Yarn bomb installation at Arkansas Arts Center.

The project was headed up in part by Chelsye Garrett, a Donaghey and McNair scholar currently earning her BFA in applied design at UALR. Garrett coordinated bi-weekly knit nights held at the Arts Center and the UALR applied design studio, and offered knitting lessons and free material. She put out calls for “critters” (knitted or crocheted animals), out-of-state contributions and other embellishments to attach to the installation.… Read more >

Rocktown Poetry Slam

I think that most people hear “slam poetry” and don’t really know what to think. Possibly some snapping? The only spoken performance I’d previously attended was a reading called Cringe — where people read aloud from their old diaries or journals for an audience. Hence the name. But I soon learned that what I had in mind for this performance art was off. Slam poetry revolves around performance, but it’s also a competition. (That’s the actual slam.) So I joined the audience of Rocktown Slam at the Arkansas Arts Center in August, utterly clueless about what to expect, to learn how a poetry slam goes.… Read more >

Syd Hayman is a beauty, entertainment and pop culture fanatic who enjoys trying different metro restaurants that satisfy picky eaters. Tweet her at @TheSydRichi.