“Here comes the General” – Douglas MacArthur born on January 26, 1880

On January 26, 1880, Douglas MacArthur was born in the Arsenal Building while his father was stationed at the Little Rock Barracks.  Though he left Arkansas a few weeks later when his father was transferred, he returned to his birthplace on March 23, 1952. On that day he was greeted by crowds welcoming one of the USA’s most famous military figures.

Though Gen. MacArthur spent only a few weeks in Little Rock, he was baptized at Christ Episcopal Church.  The location of the baptism remains a mystery today because the church was meeting in temporary locations due to the first structure having been lost to a fire.

When the General returned to Little Rock in 1952, he did pay a brief visit to Christ Church.  He also spoke at the Foster Bandshell in the park which bore his name.

When General MacArthur died, he was granted a state funeral.  He was one of the few non-Presidents to have been given this honor.

Today, the MacArthur Museum of Arkansas Military History is located in the Arsenal building.  It was created to interpret our state’s military heritage from its territorial period to the present.

Located in the historic Tower Building of the Little Rock Arsenal–the birthplace of General Douglas MacArthur–the museum preserves the contributions of Arkansas men and women who served in the armed forces.

Exhibits feature artifacts, photographs, weapons, documents, uniforms and other military items that vividly portray Arkansas’s military history at home and abroad.

Learn about the visual art of the Mississippi River Delta in the newest exhibit at Clinton Center

The Clinton Presidential Center’s newest temporary exhibit, The Mighty Mississippi: HeART and Soul of the Southern Delta, presents elements of culture from the last 120 years with roots in Arkansas, Mississippi, and Louisiana and features a selection of visual art that brings visitors face-to-face with the privilege and poverty that defines life in the Southern Delta.  It is on display through March 22.

In the exhibit, visitors will experience the music of the region that combined the traditions of many into a regional sound that spread far and wide along with the largest outmigration in U.S. History.

This exhibit celebrates the true heart and soul of the Delta through dynamic visual art, music, and artifacts. The centerpiece of the exhibit is a walk-in juke joint where guests can enjoy the unique sounds of the Delta Blues – the musical genre that paved the way for modern Rock, country, R&B, and hip-hop.

This is a continuation of Clinton Center’s Fusion: Arts + Humanities Arkansas theme “The Mighty Mississippi” begun in 2019.

Fusion 2020 is made possible because of the generous support of Centennial Bank, Little Rock Port Authority, Pine Bluff Advertising and Promotion Commission, Union Pacific Foundation, and the Quapaw Tribe of Oklahoma.

Dino Day today at the Museum of Discovery!

No photo description available.DINOSAURS ARE TAKING OVER MUSEUM OF DISCOVERY! What better way to celebrate the opening of “Dinosaurs: Fossils Exposed,” the feature exhibit opening Saturday, January 18, than with a dino party complete with prehistoric activities and demos!  The fun runs from 10am to 3pm.

Here are some of the activities we have planned (subject to change):
-Meet a paleontologist
-Explore fossils
-Make dino tracks
-Create your own Jurassic Park sound effects
-Excavate a chocolate chip cookie
-Dig the layers of the Earth (Sensory play, great for littles)
-Eggs-cavation
-Dinosaur loose parts play (great for littles)
-More

Dino Day at Museum of Discovery is included in regular museum admission or free for museum members.

“Dinosaurs: Fossils Exposed” explores the bones and fossils belonging to the giant creatures that once roamed the Earth. Visitors can view and even touch six full dinosaur skeletal molds including a Triceratops, Tyrannosaurs Rex and Velociraptor. There are additional molds of skulls, arms, legs, eggs, footprints and a 6-foot-1 Apatosaurus femur. Visitors will also enjoy a dig box where they can use paleontology tools to unearth dinosaur bones. The exhibit will remain at the museum until July 18 (date subject to change.)

Flannel Up and Join the Little Rock Zoo as they celebrate Zaara’s 1st Birthday

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You only turn one once, so don’t miss your chance to wish the Little Rock Zoo’s sloth bear cub, Zaara, a happy first birthday!

All are invited to come to the Zoo on Saturday, January 11, 2020, at 11 a.m. to wish her another great year.  This flannel and bear lodge-themed party, held in indoors in Café Africa, will be great winter fun!  Beginning at 11:30 a.m., guests are invited to enjoy cake and refreshments while supplies last.

This special celebration will include story time by the fireplace, bear keeper chats, craft-making, hot chocolate, and s’mores.  Guests will enjoy a slide show presentation on Zaara’s first year.  Guests will also have a chance to meet the Zoo staff who hand-raised Zaara. Each of these birthday activities are included in admission prices.

Café Africa will feature a specially-priced hearty meal that will include a choice of soup and/or salad and/or a sandwich for $7.

Zaara’s birthday is so important because The Little Rock Zoo was one of only two zoos in North America to have a sloth bear cub birth. Of the 40 sloth bears housed in Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) accredited Zoos in the United States, the Little Rock Zoo has four of them; that’s 10 percent!

Zaara’s birth came as a recommendation of the American Species Survival Plan ® Program, known as SSP.  The SSP Program, developed in 1981 by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA), helps to ensure the survival of select species in zoos and aquariums, which are either threatened or endangered in the wild. Native to the Indian subcontinent, sloth bears are listed as a vulnerable species, meaning one that is likely to become endangered unless the circumstances that are threatening its survival and reproduction improve.

Learn more about Zaara and other endangered animals at their birthday celebrations throughout 2020.

#2FAN at Old State House Museum – Brae Leni in concert tonight

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Join the Old State House Museum for another round of excitement at the monthly 2nd Friday Art Night!  2020 kicks off with a concert.

Inspired by Motown, Arkansas native Brae Leni will share his soul sound at the Old State House Museum for the first #2ndFridayLR of the year. For an extra special twist, Brae Leni and The Blackout is adding a horn section for the evening!

2nd Friday Art Night is downtown Little Rock’s monthly after-hours art and culture event. Attendance is free, and a trolley will take you between different participating venues for free. The museum also serves free snacks and beverages.

2FAN at HAM – Vice and Virtue tonight at Historic Arkansas Museum

Join Historic Arkansas Museum in 2020 for another great year of 2FAN!

For the first 2FAN of the year, they’ll hold the opening reception for Vice and Virtue, an exhibit by Melissa Wilkinson. Providing the musical entertainment for the evening is Little Rock’s The Cons of Formant.

Beverages and appetizers will be served in the Stella Boyle Smith Atrium including Arkansas-made beer from Stone’s Throw Brewing.

2nd Friday Art Night is sponsored by the Historic Arkansas Museum Foundation, with special thanks to 107 Liquor. The exhibit and reception are free and open to the public.

Vice and Virtue
Second Floor Gallery
January 10 – April 5, 2020

Melissa Wilkinson uses the traditional processes of painting to meditate on issues of gender, identity construction, and beauty by embracing the tactile in an increasingly technological and dehumanizing time. Her works embrace dichotomies, such as obscuring and revealing, attraction and repulsion, good and evil, the past and the present, and masculine and feminine. Vice and Virtue consists of appropriated images sourced from disco, private Tumblr accounts, and late 70’s/early 80’s “tomboys” who informed Wilkinson’s identity and sense of self as a queer person. Wilkinson’s meticulously crafted watercolor and ink wash paintings straddle the line between abstraction and representation and invite the viewer to consider how gender is perceived and displayed.

Melissa Wilkinson received her BFA in painting from Western Illinois University in 2002 and her MFA in painting from Southern Illinois University in 2006. She serves as Associate Professor of Art-Painting at Arkansas State University in Jonesboro. She lives in the Memphis, TN area.