Little Rock Culture Vulture

Cultural events, places and people in the Little Rock area

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Explore “Learning Curve”s tonight at Tales from the South at Stickyz

talesfromsouthSchool may be on Spring Break this week, but there is still much to learn.  Tonight, Tales from the South examines the lessons of “Learning Curve” at the Stickyz Rock N’ Roll Chicken Shack. The storytellers for this edition are Tom Hopkins, Jimmie vonTungeln, and Claire Green.

Music is by Amy Garland as well as blues guitarist Mark Simpson.

“Tales From the South” is a radio show created and produced by Paula Martin Morell, who is also the show’s host. The show is taped live on Tuesday. The night is a cross between a house concert and a reading/show, with incredible food and great company. Tickets must be purchased before the show, as shows are usually standing-room only.

“Tales from the South” is a showcase of writers reading their own true stories. While the show itself is unrehearsed, the literary memoirs have been worked on for weeks leading up to the readings. Stories range from funny to touching, from everyday occurrences to life-altering tragedies.

Dinner is served from 5pm to 6:30pm, the show starts at 7pm.  Admission is $15 in advance.  Dinner can be purchased separately.

You MUST purchase your ticket before the show. Any tickets available at the door will be $20.

Previous episodes of “Tales from the South” air on KUAR Public Radio on Thursdays at 7pm.  This program will air at a future date.

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Governor’s Arts Awards presented today

Today at noon at the Arkansas Governor’s Mansion, Governor Asa Hutchinson will join with the Arkansas Arts Council to present the annual Governor’s Arts Awards.

Lifetime Achievement Award-Jana L. Beard, Little Rock

Arts Community Development Award-Remica Gray, Texarkana

Arts in Education Award-DeltaARTS, West Memphis

Corporate Sponsorship of the Arts Award-Entergy Arkansas, Inc.

Folklife Award-Margaret Jones Bolsterli, Fayetteville

Individual Artist Award-Kevin Kresse, Little Rock

Patron Award-Curt & Chucki Bradbury, Little Rock

Judges Recognition Award-Kaki Hockersmith, Little Rock


The annual Governor’s Arts Awards were established in 1991 to recognize Arkansas artists, arts patrons and corporations for their outstanding contributions to the arts community. The recipients are nominated by the public and selected by distinguished panel of arts professionals from around the state.

The Arkansas Arts Council is an agency of the Department of Arkansas Heritage.

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Josh Ruxin discusses how creating a restaurant revitalized a community 

Today at noon at the Clinton School, Josh Ruxin will discuss his book A Thousand Hills to Heaven: Love, Hope and a Restaurant in Rwanda.

In the book, Ruxin recounts the trials of rebuilding a village from the ashes, then constructing a restaurant from scratch.  He makes the case that entrepreneurship and the private sector are the keys to long-term sustainability in Rwanda. 

Ruxin is assistant clinical professor of Public Health at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health and the founder of Health Builders, which improves management systems in 86 health centers across Rwanda and has constructed 5 health facilities serving 150,000 people. 

He is director of the Access Project, Rwanda Works, and the Millennium Villages Project in Rwanda. Dr. Ruxin has extensive experience operating at the intersection of public health, business, and international development. He has led projects in several developing countries and was an advisor to government and private sector leaders on business strategy and economic development. 

Dr. Ruxin was a Truman Scholar at Yale University, where he received his undergraduate degree, and a Marshall Scholar at the University of London. He is currently based in Kigali, Rwanda.

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Deciding to Run for President is topic of Clinton School program tonight

In 2009, then Governor of Indiana, Mitch Daniels, embarked on a passionate, arduous, nearly two-year journey to make the most difficult decision of his life: whether or not to pursue the presidency of the United States. 

Tonight at 6pm at the Clinton School, Don Cogman, a corporate and governmental affairs executive, shares a story of what it takes to run for President of the United States, the choices a potential candidate faces, and the hard decisions a candidate must make during the process. 

“Run Mitch, Run” offers a compelling, chronological glimpse into Daniels’ quest to make the right decision for not only himself and his family, but also his country. He reveals intriguing, behind-the-scene details as Daniels, with the help of eight devoted individuals, wrestled with the pros and cons of a presidential run. 

Cogman is one of the leaders in the communications industry, with over thirty years of public relations, public affairs, advertising, and consulting experience in New York and Washington D.C. 

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The Cat in the Hat drops in at Arts Center Children’s Theatre

The Arkansas Arts Center Children’s Theatre presents The Cat in the Hat through March 29 with special spring break matinees March 24-27.

“One of the most familiar and beloved picture books of the last half century will erupt with fun on the Children’s Theatre stage,” said Todd Herman, executive director of the Arkansas Arts Center.

“Young audiences and those young at heart will be transported into the world they’ve always imagined while seeing the classic book come to life.”

It’s a rainy day with nothing to do. Sally and her brother are miserable. Bored. Simply dying for fun. Then bump! Something quite unexpected. You guessed it. It’s a cat. In a hat. In fact, it’s the Cat in the Hat, and he’s just in time to show the kids a thing or two about fun. It’s just a matter of know-how, you know. So don’t listen to that fish! Jump in! The water’s fine! Just don’t tell mom!

The cast for The Cat in the Hat includes:

  • Ben Gibson of Little Rock as Boy
  • Sharon Combs of New York, N.Y., as Sally
  • Courtney Bennett of Little Rock as Cat
  • Mark Hansen of Little Rock as Fish
  • Aleigha Morton of Beebe as Kitten 1/Thing 1
  • Lauren Linton of Memphis as Kitten 2/Thing 2

Bradley Anderson is the artistic director and Katie Campbell is the show director. Costumes are designed by Erin Larkin; technical direction by Drew Posey; lighting design by Penelope Poppers; properties and set design by Miranda Young and Rivka Kuperman is the stage manager.

The Arkansas Arts Center Children’s Theatre presenting sponsor is Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield and the season sponsor is Dr. Loren Bartole, ‘Family Footcare’.

Dr. Seuss’ The Cat in the Hat is presented through special arrangement with Music Theatre International (MTI).

Lights! Camera! Arkansas! book signing with Robert Cochran and Suzanne McCray

The authors of a new book that explores the legacy of Arkansas on film will be center-stage for a panel and book-signing at the Old State House Museum. 

On Sunday, March 8, at 2 p.m., Robert Cochran and Suzanne McCray will be discussing their new book, “Lights! Camera! Arkansas!” on a panel hosted by Ben Fry, general manager of KUAR and host of Second Friday Cinema. 

“Lights! Camera! Arkansas!” traces the roles played by Arkansans in the first century of Hollywood’s film industry, from the first cowboy star, Broncho Billy Anderson, to Mary Steenburgen, Billy Bob Thornton and many others. 

The Arkansas landscape also plays a starring role: Crittenden County as a setting for Hallelujah (1929), and various locations in the state’s southeastern quadrant in 2012’s Mud are all given fascinating exploration. 

Cochran and McCray screened close to two hundred films—from laughable box-office bombs to laudable examples of filmmaking – in their research for this book. 

They’ve enhanced their spirited chronological narrative with an appendix on documentary films, a ratings section and illustrations chosen by Jo Ellen Maack of the Old State House Museum, where “Lights! Camera! Arkansas!” debuted as an exhibit curated by the authors in 2013.

 The exhibit will close on July 31, 2015. 

Legacies & Lunch Looks at “The Way It ‘Wuz’ Back Then”    

Lonoke County native Aretha Dodson attended segregated public schools and worked for the same school district during and after integration. She details these experiences in her memoir, That’s the Way It “Wuz” Back Then, which she will discuss at Legacies & Lunch, the Butler Center’s monthly lecture series, on Wednesday, March 4, noon-1 p.m., in the Main Library’s Darragh Center, 100 Rock Street. Books will be available for purchase, and Dodson will sign copies after her talk.

Dodson is a school improvement educational consultant who worked nearly forty years for the Lonoke public schools. That’s the Way It “Wuz” Back Then uses Dodson’s experiences, interviews she conducted, and clippings from the Lonoke Democrat to depict “the hardship and suffering of black families during the early twentieth century, segregated schools in the South, and the unrest experienced in the South during the desegregation of schools.”

Legacies & Lunch is free, open to the public, and sponsored in part by the Arkansas Humanities Council. Attendees are invited to bring a sack lunch; drinks and dessert are provided. For more information, call 501-918-3033.


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