Little Rock Culture Vulture

Cultural events, places and people in the Little Rock area


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Arts+History Election Results – By The Numbers

Feb9electionlogoThe Culture Vulture loves crunching numbers almost as much as attending cultural events.

Here are some thoughts about the results from the February 9 MacArthur Park Bond election.  These bonds will pay for improvements to the Arkansas Arts Center, MacArthur Museum of Arkansas Military History and MacArthur Park.  Excess revenues from the bonds will be available for the Little Rock Zoo, Museum of Discovery, other Little Rock parks and other Little Rock cultural institutions.

There were 7,990 votes cast in the special election.  This was 6.61% of the electorate.  By comparison, there were 4,462 ballots cast in the July 2015 Central Arkansas Library System special election and 6,995 ballots cast in the December 2013 Robinson Center special election.  The latter election brought 6.14% of voters to the polls.

Comparing early and absentee voters to election day voters:

  • Robinson (December 2013) – 871 or 12.45% of all ballots cast
  • CALS (July 2015) – 750 or 16.81% of all ballots cast
  • MacArthur Park (February 2016) – 1,171 or 14.66% of all ballots cast

The top ten precincts for voter participation on February 9:

107 – LRFD Station #10 —– 23.66%
106 – LRFD Station #10 —– 22.85%
109 – Pulaski Heights Presbyterian —–  18.17%
91 – Cammack Village City Hall —– 17.43%
108 – Woodlawn Baptist —– 17.33%
90 – Second Presbyterian —– 15.86%
112 – Pulaski Heights Presbyterian —– 15.00%
96 –  St. Mark’s Episcopal —– 13.42%
70 – Pleasant Valley CoC —–  12.58%
92 – St. Paul UMC —–  12.27%

While most of these are in the midtown area of Little Rock, some are in the western portion of Little Rock.  They tend to have the highest percentage of voter turnout in primary, general and special elections regardless of what or who is on the ballot.

 

The top 10 precincts for number of voters were:
109 – Pulaski Heights Presbyterian —– 497
106 – LRFD Station #10 —– 351
107 – LRFD Station #10 —– 308
90 – Second Presbyterian —– 260
71 – Pulaski Academy —– 252
108 – Woodlawn Baptist —– 238
114 – Arkansas Arts Center —– 230
88 – St. James UMC —– 223
95 – Grace Presbyterian —– 211
68 – Chenal Valley Church —– 204

These results spread from downtown to midtown to west Little Rock and are fairly evenly distributed.

 

There were twelve precincts in which over 90% of the voters cast ballots in favor of the bonds.  Precinct 61 at Pilgrim Rest Baptist Church was 100% in favor of it. But there was only one ballot cast.  Of the remaining eleven precincts in which more than one vote was cast, here are the rankings by percentage:

112 – Pulaski Heights Presbyterian —– 96.97
118 – Dunbar Recreation Center —– 95.83
114 – Arkansas Arts Center —– 95.65
109 – Pulaski Heights Presbyterian —– 94.77
107 – LRFD Station #10 —– 94.16
108 – Woodlawn Baptist  —– 92.86
79 – Henderson UMC —– 92.59
128 – St. John Vision Center —– 92.37
90 – Second Presbyterian —– 91.54
110 – Woodlawn Baptist  —– 91.3
135 – Pilgrim Rest Baptist —– 91.18

Again, they are fairly evenly distributed from downtown to midtown to west Little Rock.


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Sessions at South on Main features The Salty Dogs tonight

IMG_6086Next for the South on Main February Sessions, curated by Amy Garland, The Salty Dogs take to the South on Main stage!

The Salty Dogs are a four piece band that enjoys playing and recording original country music. The Little Rock based band has released 3 full-length studio albums including their current EP – Too old to fight. The band was formed in 2003 and was named the “Best Original Band in Arkansas” by the Arkansas Times. Since then, the band has played countless shows sharing the stage with such likes of Junior Brown, Hank Williams, Jr., Old Crow Medicine Show, The Gourds, Pete Anderson, David Rawlings, Robert Earl Keen, Kinky Friedman, Kelly Willis and many more.

The band’s music has been featured on TLC‘s hit TV show, Trading Spaces, on the award winning Sundance Channel hit show, Rectify, and most recently the motion picture release, Valley Inn. 

Sessions with The Salty Dogs starts at 8:30 pm on Wednesday, February 10.


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Black History Month Spotlight – Arkansas Baptist College

The new Arkansas Civil Rights History Audio Tour was launched in November 2015. Produced by the City of Little Rock and the University of Arkansas at Little Rock allows the many places and stories of the City’s Civil Rights history to come to life an interactive tour.  This month, during Black History Month, the Culture Vulture looks at some of the stops on this tour which focus on African American history.

 

Arkansas Baptist College, established in 1884 by Rev. E. C. Morris and the National Baptist Convention, trained black students to become ministers and teachers. One of the earliest historically black colleges in the state, Arkansas Baptist College was first hosted by neighborhood churches, including Mt. Zion Baptist. In 1885, the College finally settled at what is now 16th and Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Drive.

Reverend Joseph A. Booker was appointed president of Arkansas Baptist College in 1887 and served for nearly forty years. Born into slavery, Booker was later educated at Nashville Institute in Tennessee. He not only scored early success for the college but also won acclaim as editor of Baptist Vanguard, a weekly publication produced on campus. Noted as a staunch opponent of Jim Crow segregation laws in Little Rock, Booker fought the Separate Coach Law of 1891.

In 2006, the College launched the African American Leadership Institute and in 2015 the Scott Ford Center for Entrepreneurship and Community Development. Dr. Fitzgerald Hill has directed the resurgence of Arkansas Baptist College, securing federal grants and recruiting more students.

The app, funded by a generous grant from the Arkansas Humanities Council, was a collaboration among UALR’s Institute on Race and Ethnicity, the City of Little Rock, the Mayor’s Tourism Commission, and KUAR, UALR’s public radio station, with assistance from the Little Rock Convention and Visitors Bureau


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Black History Month Spotlight – Philander Smith College

reynoldslibraryphilandersmithThe new Arkansas Civil Rights History Audio Tour was launched in November 2015. Produced by the City of Little Rock and the University of Arkansas at Little Rock allows the many places and stories of the City’s Civil Rights history to come to life an interactive tour.  This month, during Black History Month, the Culture Vulture looks at some of the stops on this tour which focus on African American history.

Philander Smith College is Little Rock’s oldest historically black educational institution. It was established in 1877 as Walden Seminary, by the African Methodist Episcopal Church to educate ministers. Its name changed after an endowment in 1882 by the widow of Illinois philanthropist Philander Smith. Wesley Chapel has always been associated with the college’s activities. The enslaved William Wallace Andrews founded Wesley in 1854 on land donated by his owner, U.S. Senator Chester Ashley. In 1864, parishioners celebrated their freedom with a “Parade of Emancipation.”

Pastors at Wesley included Rev. J. C. Crenchaw, president of the Little Rock NAACP, and Rev. Negail Riley, leader of the Black United Fund. In the 1960’s, Philander Smith students participated in “sit-ins” at downtown lunch counters.

Noted alumni include Dr. Joycelyn Elders, former U.S. surgeon general; professional athletes Elijah Pitts of the Green Bay Packers; Hubert “Geese” Ausbie of the Harlem Globetrotters; and Milton Pitts Crenchaw, a Tuskeegee Airman; James Hal Cone, a pioneer of black liberation theology; Lottie Shackelford, former Mayor of Little Rock; Al Bell, founder of Stax Records and former president of Motown Records; and Stephanie Flowers, Arkansas State Senator.

The app, funded by a generous grant from the Arkansas Humanities Council, was a collaboration among UALR’s Institute on Race and Ethnicity, the City of Little Rock, the Mayor’s Tourism Commission, and KUAR, UALR’s public radio station, with assistance from the Little Rock Convention and Visitors Bureau

Feb9electionlogo


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Vote Today FOR Little Rock’s Arts+History

Feb9electionlogoToday is Election Day for the Campaign for Arts + History.

By voting FOR on Tuesday, February 9th Little Rock residents can expand and enhance our Arkansas Arts Center, MacArthur Museum of Arkansas Military History, and MacArthur Park. Your vote FOR on February 9th will upgrade facilities and public spaces to ensure the Arkansas Arts Center keeps its accreditation by issuing a bond backed by an existing hotel tax on out of town visitors.

Polling sites are open from 7:30am to 7:30pm.

  • Your for vote will keep the Arkansas Arts Center in Little Rock accredited, with updates to aging facilities over 50 years old, bringing in more world-class exhibitions and educational opportunities.
  • Your for vote will help expand and enhance the Arkansas Arts Center and improve the MacArthur Museum of Arkansas Military History by providing much needed help to aging facilities and addressing landscaping needs in MacArthur Park.
  • Your for vote will spur community involvement by increasing educational opportunities, attracting more world class exhibits, expanding art classes and renovating the Children’s Theatre.
  • Your for vote will establish a public/private partnership between public funding and private donations that ensures our city can expand and enhance the Arkansas Arts Center, MacArthur Museum of Arkansas Military History and MacArthur Park.

In legalese: An issue of bonds of the City of Little Rock, Arkansas in one or more series in the maximum aggregate principal amount of Thirty-Seven Million, Five Hundred Thousand Dollars ($37,500,000.00) for the purpose of financing a portion of the costs of improvements to MacArthur Park, including particularly, without limitation, renovations and additions to, and furnishings and equipment for, the Arkansas Arts Center and renovations and equipment for the MacArthur Museum of Arkansas Military History, including any necessary parking, landscaping, signage, drainage, lighting, road and utility improvements in MacArthur Park. The bonds will be payable from and secured by a pledge of the collections of the taxes levied by the City at an aggregate rate of 2% upon the gross receipts or gross proceeds derived and received from the renting, leasing or otherwise furnishing of hotel, motel, bed and breakfast or short-term condominium or apartment rental accommodations for sleeping for profit in the City, pursuant to Ordinance Nos. 21,140 and 21,141 adopted December 1, 2015. The proceeds of the bonds will also be used to provide a debt service reserve and pay costs of issuing the bonds.


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Black History Month Spotlight – Little Rock Cemeteries

Mount Holly greyThe new Arkansas Civil Rights History Audio Tour was launched in November 2015. Produced by the City of Little Rock and the University of Arkansas at Little Rock allows the many places and stories of the City’s Civil Rights history to come to life an interactive tour.  This month, during Black History Month, the Culture Vulture looks at some of the stops on this tour which focus on African American history.

Mount Holly Cemetery: Broadway at Twelfth Street, est. 1843

Oakland and Fraternal Historic Cemetery Park: 2101 S. Barber, est. 1863

Haven of Rest Cemetery: 1702 Twelfth Street, est. 1903

National African Americans and important civil rights leaders are interred in several local cemeteries.

Mount Holly Cemetery is the final resting place of enslaved people, who were buried in their owner’s family plots, and the graves of several free blacks in the mid-1800s. One notable black leader buried here is Nathan Warren, founding pastor of Bethel AME Church. A marker is dedicated to Quatie Ross, wife of Cherokee Chief John Ross, who died along the Trail of Tears in 1839.

Oakland and Fraternal Historic Cemetery Park is composed of several cemeteries serving different communities: Oakland, Confederate, National, Jewish, and Fraternal, an historically black cemetery. Civil rights advocates buried in Fraternal include Mifflin Wistar Gibbs, John E. Bush, Charlotte Andrews Stephens, Dr. John Marshall Robinson, Isaac Gillam, Sr. and Jr., Asa l. Richmond, as well as members of the influential Pankey and Ish families.

Haven of Rest Cemetery is the largest cemetery for black people in Little Rock. Among the graves here are those of Daisy Gatson Bates, civil rights activist and mentor to the Little Rock Nine; attorney Scipio Africanus Jones; and Rev. Joseph Booker, president of Arkansas Baptist College.

The app, funded by a generous grant from the Arkansas Humanities Council, was a collaboration among UALR’s Institute on Race and Ethnicity, the City of Little Rock, the Mayor’s Tourism Commission, and KUAR, UALR’s public radio station, with assistance from the Little Rock Convention and Visitors Bureau

YOM LR Zoo


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Chinese New Year – Year of the Monkey

It is the Year of the Monkey! So in honor of that, here are some photos of monkeys at the Little Rock Zoo!

YOM - Catherine Hopkins

Photo by Catherine Hopkins

YOM - Catherine Hopkins 2

Photo by Catherine Hopkins

YOM - Karen Caster

Photo by Karen Caster

YOM - Jumoke and mom - Catherine Hopkins

Mahale and Jumoke – photo by Catherine Hopkins

YOM LR Zoo

Having fun at the Little Rock Zoo

YOM gibbon - Melissa Martin

Gibbon photo by Melissa Martin

YOM Paddy the Gibbon - Karen Caster

Paddy the Gibbon by Karen Caster

YOM tamarins - Karen Caster

Tamarins and their snowman by Karen Caster

YOM spider monkeys - Karen Caster

Spider monkeys by Karen Caster

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