NEWS + POLITICS + ENTERTAINMENT / DECEMBER 19, 2012 / ARKTIMES.COM
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VOLUME 39, NUMBER 16 ARKANSAS TIMES (ISSN 0164-6273) is published each week by Arkansas Times Limited Partnership, 201 East Markham Street, 200 Heritage Center West, P.O. Box 34010, Little Rock, Arkansas, 72203, phone (501) 375-2985. Periodical postage paid at Little Rock, Arkansas, and additional mailing offices. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to ARKANSAS TIMES, P.O. Box 34010, Little Rock, AR, 72203. Subscription prices are $42 for one year, $78 for two years. Subscriptions outside Arkansas are $49 for one year, $88 for two years. Foreign (including Canadian) subscriptions are $168 a year. For subscriber service call (501) 375-2985. Current single-copy price is 75¢, free in Pulaski County. Single issues are available by mail at $2.50 each, postage paid. Payment must accompany all single-copy orders. Reproduction or use in whole or in part of the contents without the written consent of the publishers is prohibited. Manuscripts and artwork will not be returned or acknowledged unless sufficient return postage and a self-addressed stamped envelope are included. All materials are handled with due care; however, the publisher assumes no responsibility for care and safe return of unsolicited materials. All letters sent to ARKANSAS TIMES will be treated as intended for publication and are subject to ARKANSAS TIMES’ unrestricted right to edit or to comment editorially.
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DECEMBER 19, 2012
NRA Concealed carry laws? Amount to a police state. Thirty-round clips? They’re Needed for self-protection. And the victims? Arm them, too. Stuart Jay Silverman Hot Springs
Time for gun reform It’s beyond time to reform our gun laws, folks. True, it won’t solve everything overnight, but it would certainly quickly aid in screening lunatics who can now pick and choose at gun show festivals and order mass murder arsenals online. Responsible gun owners should have no problem in some extra questioning to further public safety. I mean, we all gladly take out our belongings at an airport because of one awful tragedy, right? It’s not “Big Liberal Government Lockdown” either. It’s called being practical because we all have to live with one another. Jeff B. Woodmansee Sherwood
the Saturnalia as the official winter holiday, and there went the neighborhood. And the Suzy Everetts and Ronnie Floyds of the state have been falsely proclaiming the “reason for the season” ever since. Brad Bailey Fayetteville
Supreme Court got it right I beg to differ with the editorial page assessment of last month’s Arkansas Supreme Court decision regarding school funding. It may not be what
you want to hear but it is an accurate reading of the law. The decision does affect to a small degree equity of maintenance and operations funds among the state’s school districts. Maintenance and operations, however, is only one of several funds that make up a district’s budget. Most important, the ad-valorem tax collected by our county for our school district is our money and not the state’s. As the majority opinion expressed, should the legislature wish to tackle that issue they are welcome to address it in the legislative session. A modest task
Huckabee on Newtown One-time presidential candidate Mike Huckabee claimed after the tragic Newtown, Conn., mass murder that the shooting was not a surprise, as it was caused because God has been systemically removed from the schools. What a cruel and insensitive thing to say. If he was president and said this, he probably would have been impeached his first month in office. Kenneth L. Zimmerman Huntington Beach, Calif.
The real reason for the season The one drawback of having cable TV this time of year is having to witness Suzie Everett of Northwest Arkansas’s Everett-Maxey car dealership shoving her religion down everybody’s throat multiple times a day. Thank God for the mute button. The original “reason for the season” was the Winter Solstice, the longest day of the calendar year. It was celebrated in ancient Rome with a huge festival called the Saturnalia. It was marked by an official sacrifice at the temple of Saturn, public banquets, private gift-giving, gambling, a carnival-like atmosphere and a general sense of fun. The early Christians moved Christ’s birth back a few months from the birthing of the lambs in spring to December in order to compete with the Saturnalia. When the Emperor Constantine became Christian, Christmas replaced 4
DECEMBER 19, 2012
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compared to explaining that position to their constituents. Albert J. Larson Eureka Springs
Jews and Jesus In your Dec. 12 issue, a gentleman wrote a letter stating: “... lost souls ... will try to kill him (Jesus) again in the name of God, just like the Jews in Palestine did some 2000 years ago.” This comment is insulting, bigoted, and hateful. Furthermore, it is erroneous. According to a wide scholarly consensus, Jesus of Nazareth was sentenced to death and executed by the Romans occupying and ruling the kingdom of Judea. Crucifixion was used as a tool of humiliation and torture by the Roman Empire, which employed specific methods to carry out this heinous act. The perpetuation of the myth that Jews killed Jesus has had dire outcomes for the Jewish people. These include the forced conversion, execution, and expulsion of Jews from Spain, centuryspanning pogroms against Jews in Eastern Europe, and, the mass-genocide of the Jewish people of Europe during the Holocaust. Anti-Jewish myths and distortions, in the forms of tales of the “Wandering Jew,” the Protocols of the Elders of Zion and numerous anti-Jewish conspiracy theories have spawned more sanitized forms of anti-Semitism, including Ivy League quotas preventing admission of Jews to universities and professional schools, barring of Jews from country club and civic organization membership, and the absurd recent assertions that the Jewish population was to blame for the recent U.S. financial crisis. In short, continued advancement of the concept that Jews killed Jesus, whether intentional or via ignorance, has made it easy and even fashionable for Christian Americans to injure and exclude the Jewish population. I would ask that all of the readers of the Times, in this season in which peace and goodwill to mankind is so strongly emphasized, question their beliefs, educate themselves, and work to actively denounce all forms of bigotry, not only to Jews, but to all people. Jonathan A. Dranoff Little Rock
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DECEMBER 19, 2012
EYE ON ARKANSAS
Bullets or ballots?
ichigan is our sister state, and yet we’ve always been a little resentful of her, what with her higher wages and better services and all. Now we can drop the resentment and the accompanying guilt and regard Michigan as an equal. It’s not that we’ve moved up to their level, but that they’ve dropped down to ours. Historically pro-union, Michigan last week joined the anti-union states, its governor signing a “right to work” bill like Arkansas’s. “Right to work” laws don’t give anyone a right to work. They give workers the right to avoid paying union dues, even when those workers benefit from union-negotiated contracts. The unions are weakened, and before long workers’ wages and benefits decline. “Right to work” Arkansas has always been near the bottom of the states in per capita income and other economic indicators. Until now, Michigan has been near the top. After the new law was enacted, a retired Michigan unionist told reporters he believed that Michiganders’ standard of living would decline. We Arkansans can confirm that. And things are likely to get worse in both states, now that both have Republican-controlled legislatures. Republicans and their corporate bosses don’t like high wages, and they also don’t like the political activity that unions engage in, often opposing Republican candidates and Republican policies. A Republican Supreme Court has said that elections should be decided by dollars, not workers. 6
DECEMBER 19, 2012
iven a choice between gun control and ballot control, Arkansas legislators would rather keep people from voting than shooting. Already a bill has been filed by a Republican legislator, for the legislative session beginning next month, that would make it more difficult for certain people to vote, people who are, uncoincidentally, apt to vote Democratic — minorities, the poor, the elderly. The bill would require a type of photo identification that many of these people don’t have and would find difficult to obtain. Ostensibly, the bill is meant to prevent voter impersonation, but this is nonexistent already. Even the sponsor of the bill can’t cite a single case. Nonetheless, a photo ID bill was approved by the House of Representatives last year but died in the Senate. With Republicans controlling both houses in the 2013 session, photo ID is almost certain to become law. But we’ll go out on a limb and predict that no bill will be introduced in the Arkansas legislature to make it more difficult for people to obtain firearms, despite the schoolhouse massacre in Connecticut last week, the latest in a series of mass shootings that cry out for the government to protect its citizens. If some foolhardy freshman tries, he’ll be shouted down. No matter which party has a majority, the NRA runs the Arkansas legislature. The legislature’s response to multiple murders has always been to try to put more guns in the hands of more people, not reduce the number. Don’t be surprised if a lawmaker introduces a bill requiring that schoolchildren be armed. One has already promised a bill to have college professors packing.
’TIS THE SEASON: Paul Barrows submitted this photo of the River Rail Trolley decked out for Christmas to our Eye On Arkansas Flickr group.
It’s Groundhog Day
t’s become something of a Christmas season ritual. The city of Little Rock rolls out a new budget. It includes special assistance for a corporate lobby that works against broad community interests. I erupt. The next December, it replays. Bill Murray could play me in a “Groundhog Day”-style movie. Except there’s no happy ending. Little Rock’s 2013 budget again caters to that corporate lobby, the Little Rock Regional Chamber of Commerce. It continues a $200,000 payment to the chamber, nominally for contracted economic development work. It is nothing more than a direct subsidy of a private corporation, an abuse of the state Constitution. A new wrinkle is an additional $100,000 payment to the Metro Little Rock Alliance, nominally a regional partnership of mostly public partners engaged in economic development. It is another arm of the Chamber of Commerce and another device to put tax money in its treasury. About 20 percent of the money goes as an administrative fee to the Chamber for work it was already doing anyway. Much of the rest of the budget is payment for a variety of expenses of Chamber employees. The Alliance, which had a budget of $277,000 this year, asked for $100,000 from Little Rock in 2013 and City Manager Bruce Moore promptly recommended it. My FOI requests produced no record that the barebones application engendered any discussion or questions about why suddenly Little Rock was being asked to pay a third of the group’s operating costs. The application makes no explanation of how this effort is distinct from the work Little Rock is supposedly getting from the Little Rock Chamber for its $200,000. It took three weeks, but I finally dislodged some information from the Chamber about how the Alliance has spent its money, though no specifics on how that administrative fee is spent, except that it flows to the Chamber. It seems clear that the Chamber has found a
way to achieve an otherwise politically unpalatable and legally questionable increase in its direct subsidy from the Little Rock Board of Directors. Just give it a different name. MAX What’s not to like about BRANTLEY email@example.com outsourcing city economic development work, something City Manager Moore said he couldn’t afford to do in-house? Plenty. For one thing, there’s scant accountability. Who used that credit card for what purpose and what were the contacts and what kind of representations were made about what an industrial prospect could expect from the city of Little Rock? Good luck getting Jay Chessir, the chamber boss to tell you. He’s the guy who ran the secretive city sales tax campaign. The guy who said the FOI law didn’t apply to him. The guy who fought my ethics complaint over a lack of campaign disclosure. The guy who’ll certainly fight the Ethics Commission’s effort to fix the loophole he found. In return for this past tax campaign service, the city gave Chessir and the chamber $22 million to build an office building to attract tech businesses. Now the city board is ready to increase its subsidy of a political organization. The chamber hates unions (the city workforce is heavily unionized). It hates strong workers comp laws. It has trashed public schools. It loves the regressive sales tax. It likes corporate welfare, even for low-wage companies that don’t necessarily draw employees from the city of Little Rock. It embraces companies like Welspun, the pipe maker, which happily became a political tool for the Republican Party and particularly U.S. Rep. Tim Griffin. (I might remind city fathers that city voters thrashed Tim Griffin in the recent election.) The chamber is free to be as politically retrograde as it chooses. I simply object to city taxpayers paying for it. See you next December.
Children pay price
niversal shock and grief over a single cataclysm like the mass slaughter of tiny children and their teachers would have been enough for most of our history to move a stubborn government to fix an evident and growing danger to society. But no longer, and especially not when the object is guns. The circulation of the weapons of war among the general population has been going on for 30 years with a rising toll of innocent lives year after year, but the opposition to doing anything to curb it has not subsided but grown more virulent. That is why President Obama, who had promised in 2008 to take steps to curb gun violence, did nothing. Nothing that Obama conceivably could have proposed had the slightest chance of passing either house of Congress, but that was not the only reason for his silence. It was the realization that for a sizable population who saw gun regulation as the end game for America or civilization he had become the emblem of Armageddon. All you have to do is read the preachings of any of the many right-wing, paramilitary, white-supremacy or anti-Mus-
lim groups about Obama’s plan to take away people’s guns and install a dictatorship. For that matter, folERNEST low the National DUMAS Rifle Association. Wayne LaPierre, its executive vice president, told cheering delegates to the Conservative Political Action Conference in Washington (shortly before Mike Huckabee had them cheering more anti-Obama ravings) that Obama had to be stopped because if he were re-elected he would abolish the Second Amendment and confiscate everyone’s guns. Sales of guns and ammunition soared after the 2008 election and they must be spiking again this fall. Across the Arkansas countryside, people are stockpiling ammunition for Armageddon. It didn’t make the news down here, but the day before Adam Lanza killed his mother and 26 children and teachers at Sandy Hook, Ct., police arrested a young man in Bartlesville, Okla., who had stockpiled ammunition and was plotting a mass killing at his high school, and the day after Sandy Hook
The guns we need
ne of the worst days in the history of our country,” my friend Dan Kennedy wrote on Facebook. “The worst day since 9/11.” My sentiments exactly. If you’re like most people, they’re probably yours. Very likely, the rest of us will never know, much less comprehend the Newtown, Conn., school shooter’s motives. The word itself implies a coherence alien to a diseased mind. Twenty first-graders. Do his motives even matter? Having some knowledge of mental illness, when I first heard that the Newtown killer’s weapons — a Bushmaster .223 caliber assault rifle, a pair of 9mm semi-automatic handguns, and hundreds of bullets — were registered to his mother, I imagined I knew the story: a divorced, middle-aged suburban housewife, isolated, captive to her son’s madness, handicapped by weak laws and an inadequate mental health system, and frantically bargaining with his advancing psychosis to buy peace. Hoping that things would magically change. But it turns out that I was wrong. The guns that ended Nancy Lanza’s life in her own bed indeed belonged to her. Living alone in semi-isolation with a troubled teen-age son she kept at home because
the stresses of school were more than he could handle, she adopted the least sensible hobby imaginable. GENE She became a LYONS gun collector and avid target shooter, and she took her son along. Something of a mathematical whiz with a loner’s passion for computers and video games, he probably took to the mechanical precision of expensive, semiautomatic weapons. Alas, he took to the darker aspects of the American gun cult as well. Look, target shooting is one thing: a harmless, somewhat dorky pastime like bowling or showing thoroughbred dogs. I own a target pistol myself, and take it out sometimes to plink aluminum cans and the occasional cedar fence post. I also own shotguns, although I no longer hunt. Out in the Arkansas boondocks where I live, guns are a practical necessity for several reasons — self-defense among them. Most men and a fair proportion of the women are deer hunters. We hear gunshots all the time. Even the dogs and horses pretty much ignore them. There was even a killing at Christmas a couple of miles down the road three years
police found 47 guns and $100,000 worth of ammunition in the home of a 60-yearold Indiana man who threatened to kill his wife and exterminate children in a nearby school. This week there is new talk about standing up to the NRA, the Patriot groups and survivalists and enacting gun controls for the first time since Bill Clinton’s brief and ineffectually written ban in 1994 on the sale of assault weapons, which lasted 10 years. Opponents will argue, successfully, that prohibiting the sale of AR-15 type weapons and bullets won’t stop killings, although some history suggests that it could. When a gunman killed 35 people and wounded 23 others in Australia in 1996, the conservative government passed a law forbidding the sale of semi-automatic shotguns and rifles and bought back 600,000 guns. In the next 10 years, mass murders fell from 11 the previous decade to none, and homicides by guns fell by 59 percent and suicides by guns by 65 percent. But not even the image of a first-grader riddled by 11 bullets from an AR-15 can provoke the government so hated by the right to do anything so radical as disappointing gun collectors and makers. Too many prefer Mike Huckabee’s explanation for Sandy Hook: God let those children and teachers be killed because He
was mad they weren’t praying or else because America was tolerating homosexual lifestyles. The right-wingers on the U.S. Supreme Court who said the Second Amendment gave people the right to own a gun also said the government was expected to regulate weapons for public safety, as the Second Amendment says and as the government set out to do from the very first, so the legal avenue is wide open when there is sufficient motive to act. The founding fathers enacted tough gun laws, barring them to slaves and free blacks and to white men who did not swear loyalty to the American revolution. Until fairly recently, the NRA was the country’s leading champion of gun regulation, though that was when the chief fear was radical blacks like the Black Panthers, who toted weapons openly and confronted the police and lawmakers in California with weapons at their sides. A worried Gov. Ronald Reagan demanded gun control. After the Civil War, Southern states adopted Black Codes, which, among other things, forbade blacks to own guns. Come to think of it, in the gun belt, a good black scare (where is Huey Newton when we need him?) could be the ticket to gun reform again.
ago. I knew the shooter somewhat, and had never heard anything bad about him. As told around the county, it was a deal where a meth addict vowed mayhem if his girlfriend took her child to see his father. He texted death threats. Call the sheriff and maybe they’ll send somebody within the hour. Alerted by dogs, my neighbor took down a deer rifle, and confronted his shotgun-toting assailant, who jumped into his truck and threw it into reverse. He died at the wheel. Prosecutors charged the shooter with murder, but the case never came to trial. There would have been no point. Everybody I talked to around here basically said the same thing: “What’s he supposed to do, wait for the crazy sumbitch to sneak up on him again?” My sentiments exactly. In short, a sorrowful tragedy. But even in telling the story as sparely as possible, it’s almost impossible to prevent a kind of tough-guy romanticism from sneaking in. The kind of false bravado that makes cartoonish revenge comedies like the “Dirty Harry,” “Die Hard” and “Lethal Weapon” series such characteristically American cultural artifacts. The same kind of false bravado that has persuaded Bushmaster Firearms to advertise its .223 caliber AR-15 rifle — slayer of 20 first graders, six teachers and one mother — with a stark black and white photo of the
weapon propped on an oversized ammunition magazine and the slogan: “Consider your man card reissued.” Seriously now, how pathetic is that? Prove your manhood by plunking down $1,200-$1,500 for a deadly toy. Was this Nancy Lanza’s hope for her cowardly son? We’ll never know. Meanwhile, the New York Times reports that even in wealthy Newtown, there’s a political struggle between gun hobbyists and citizens seeking restrictions on shooting ranges. “These are not normal guns that people need” one member of the police commission said. “These are guns for an arsenal, and you get lunatics like this guy who goes into a school fully armed and protected to take return fire. We live in a town, not in a war.” If the phrase “well-regulated militia” in the Second Amendment means anything, they’re surely not guns that Americans need. They’re military weapons with no legitimate civilian uses; they’re cult objects, fetishes. “What choice do we have?” President Obama asked at the memorial service to Newtown’s dead. “We can’t accept events like this as routine. Are we really prepared to say that we’re powerless in the face of such carnage, that the politics are too hard? Are we prepared to say that such violence visited on our children year after year after year is somehow the price of our freedom?” Prayerfully, we are not. www.arktimes.com
DECEMBER 19, 2012
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hile Bret Bielema’s Razorback honeymoon progresses, Mike Anderson has moved beyond his initial grace period. Anderson wasn’t handed substantial largess for his first season as head basketball coach, and matters only worsened when Rotnei Clarke’s constant flirtations with abandoning the program finally materialized late in the summer of 2011 and Marshawn Powell sustained a knee injury in the second game. The depth issue appears to have been rectified, though the results to date haven’t borne that out — the Hogs are a pedestrian 5-4, and the defeats have proven one thing of note. The Hogs desperately crave a third competent, dependable scorer. Powell and sophomore guard B.J. Young are throwing up 33 points combined per game; nobody else on the roster has been able to approach their production. In an era of college basketball where there is simply no time to break players in slowly, the urgency for Anderson to locate and utilize another weapon is feverish. It’s an odd quandary, frankly, because by all rights Mardracus Wade should’ve been that option. The slight junior guard became a fairly reliable perimeter gunner last year — though, to be blunt, not to the extent that Clarke had been — but he’s looked considerably less confident in the early going of 2012-13. He’s reached double digits only three times in nine contests, and disappeared completely in three of the Hogs’ four losses. Wade has shown a knack for a silky stroke when a clean look avails itself in the half-court game, but he’s not as safe a bet in transition. This downturn has only been mildly offset by Hunter Mickelson’s uptick. The sophomore forward has demonstrated more polish offensively, but still appears unwilling to be that consistent interior banger that Arkansas has lacked since, oh, 1993-95. He has tossed up almost as many three-point attempts (four) as free throws (six) through the first one-third of the season, a statistic that wouldn’t be so bothersome if not for the fact that SEC play always brings heavier contact in the paint than the Alcorn States and Longwoods can muster. Mickelson may yet emerge as that coveted paint presence, but for now he’s not logging enough minutes or sufficient touches to be viewed as a threat. Coty Clarke currently sits as the third-leading scorer statistically, but largely on the strength of a 20-point burst in the opener. Since that time, the junior transfer has notched only
53 total points in eight games, and as with Wade, has been utterly silent in losses. As for Rashad MadBEAU den, he still hasn’t WILCOX flashed any sort of scorer’s instinct, though his floor game is coming along. The batch of freshmen — Michael Qualls, Anthlon Bell, Jacorey Williams and DeQuavious Wagner — are likely too raw to be considered as that critical third arm of support. None of this is said to demean what is clearly a deeper and more athletic roster than the one Anderson had to will to an 18-win debut campaign in Fayetteville last year. The heralded newcomers from a year ago have made some perceptible strides, and there are signs that Powell and Young will not only coexist but jointly excel as team leaders. The problem is that Arkansas has had five “name” opponents on its schedule, and save for a whisper-thin home win over an Oklahoma squad that was far from imposing, the Hogs haven’t been able to scale the proverbial hump in those challenges. They did play Syracuse reasonably well and put forth a strong upset bid at Michigan, but the four remaining games prior to conference play aren’t likely to provide anything but a workout and the SEC schedule once again appears backloaded. That obviously would again stake the fate of the entire season on what happens in February and March, and whereas the Hogs weren’t judiciously equipped for that stretch last year, this season could be different simply by way of quantity. Fred Gulley is now eligible and may be more helpful than expected if he can be the kind of pacesetter that Anderson’s offense requires. And the contrast with John Pelphrey’s recruiting remains evident and refreshing: Qualls and Bell aren’t ripe, for instance, but they appear more basketball-ready than, say, Glenn Bryant or Marvell Waithe ever were. Anderson is understandably committed to finding present assets rather than long-term projects. That is the right approach. Again, whether it will result in a return to the NCAA tournament this year hinges on the Hogs’ ability to compile a ledger of high-quality wins and avoid those damaging late-season defeats. So far, even that uninspiring record doesn’t cause them harm, as there is no shame in competing well against the likes of the Orange and the Wolverines.
Itâ€™s the return of the annual Arkansas Times Musicians Showcase with performers competing for an array of prizes. All acts that have at least four songs of original material are encouraged to enter. All styles are welcome.
The Holy Shakes 2012 Winner
!"#$%&'(!')*+ Semifinalists will compete throughout January and February at Stickyz. Weekly winners will then face off in the finals at the Rev Room in March. Check out arktimes.com/showcase for information on how to enter online and upload your files.
DEADLINE FOR ENTRY
Door prizes will be given away to fans in attendance.
FOR MORE INFO E-MAIL
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W O RDS
Wear your kneepads “Afterward, Pryor said it was difficult to engage in a detailed conversation, especially on issues such as the fiscal cliff — a combination of tax increases and spending cuts that are set to go into effect next year. Many economists warn that it will kneecap the economy if it isn’t averted.” The verb kneecap is not one I expected to hear in a discussion of the American economy. A TV cop show, maybe. But I guess I haven’t been paying attention. Apparently this usage has been accepted as standard for some time now. My old Random House says that to kneecap is “to cripple (a person) by shooting in the knee.”
Bullying and discrimination in Little Rock schools Michel Leidermann
When Sandra met Clifford:
We barely survived Hurricane Sandy and now we’re threatened by Fiscal Cliff. Seems a bit much, although I suspect Cliff may be overrated. But Sandy did real harm, too much to be wearing an affectionate diminutive, I think. Hurricanes are not cute, especially the really big ones. What’s next? Hurricane Cissy? Hurricane Tubby? Wise up, weathermen. I bet nobody ever called Sandra Palin “Sandy.” Not and lived to tell about it. “Auburn Coach Gene Chizik walks the sidelines during the second half of Saturday’s 49-0 loss to Alabama at Bryant-
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Denny Stadium in Tuscaloosa, Ala. Chizik was fired Sunday after a 3-9 season by Athletic Director Jay DOUG Jacobs.” Bick SatSMITH email@example.com terfield asks, “If the A.D. had a 3-9 season, why didn’t they fire him instead of the coach?” “ ‘Duane Neal had been an intricate part of the success of the Arkansas Republican Party that we are enjoying now,’ Barnett said.” The word that fits here is integral, Michael Klossner points out. As with kneecap and the economy, I found this language a little odd in an article about the Connecticut school massacre. “ ‘It’s alarming, especially in Newtown, Connecticut, which we always thought was the safest place in America,’ he said. His daughter was fine. ... Mergim Bajraliu, 17, heard the gunshots from his home and ran to check on his 9-year-old sister at the school. He said his sister, who was fine, heard a scream come over the intercom at one point.” Fine seems subjective and premature. I’d use safe or unharmed.
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HIGH PROFILE PETITIONS. The attorney general’s office has asked the Arkansas Supreme Court to reconsider its 4-3 ruling that school districts can keep property tax dollars that exceed the state’s per-student funding minimum. Meanwhile, Gov. Mike Beebe has asked the court for permission to file an amicus brief in the case. Beebe’s legal counsel said the governor was mindful of separation of power issues and the court’s “unquestioned role” in interpreting the Constitution and law. “In this case, however, the governor respectfully submits the court has erred and that a rehearing is warranted ... .”
It was a bad week for... MIKE HUCKABEE. The former Arkansas governor, infamous for saying callous and stupid things throughout his career, outdid himself in the wake of the Newtown, Conn., school shooting. “We ask why there is violence in our schools, but we have systematically removed God from our schools,” Huckabee said on Fox News. “Should we be so surprised
that schools would become a place of carnage?” Later, again on Fox News, he doubled down, linking “tax-funded abortion pills” to the massacre. ATTORNEY GENERAL DUSTIN MCDANIEL. In a statement, he admitted that he had a “limited interaction” with Hot Springs attorney Andrea “Andi” Davis, some of which was “inappropriate.” The issue was forced into the open by a Dec. 3 filing in Garland County, in a divorce filed by Davis against her husband Fred Day. Day asked Davis for a series of admissions. One of them asks: “Please admit that you had sexual relations with Attorney General of the state of Arkansas Dustin McDaniel in 2011 or 2012.” Davis responded: “Objection. The question asks for information irrelevant to the issues before the court and is asked solely to harass and annoy.” REP. DAVID MEEKS. The Conway Republican told the Democrat-Gazette that he didn’t believe the cuts proposed by the Arkansas Department of Human Services to close a $138 million shortfall were necessary. Meeks, echoing a point many state Republicans have put forward, said through identifying waste and finding other revenue the gap can be closed. Thus far, neither Meeks nor any other Republican has been specific about waste and other funding sources. Meanwhile, DHS has already implemented aggressive costsavings measures (see details on page 24).
Candlelight Communion in the Sanctuary THE OBSERVER NOTES ON THE PASSING SCENE
Pizza with grief TAKING A BREAK FROM CHRISTMAS SHOPPING on Friday night, the Observer and Spouse stopped in at a pizza buffet in West Little Rock, Yours Truly always drawn as moth to flame by the idea of a potentially infinite amount of pizza for one money. The Observer has never quite made my belly live up to the promise of that magical statement, “All You Can Eat!” but the Good Lord willing, I’ll get there someday. The place was packed with families on their night out, a kid’s wellattended birthday party in progress on one side of the room, with boys and girls of 5 or 6 running up and down the aisles and enjoying life. The party eventually wound down, and the leftover cake was boxed. The guests donned their coats and filed out into the rain, still smiling. When they were gone, a waitress went into the party section and started clearing the tables. When she was done with that, she took something sharp and began popping the party balloons affixed to each table, one by one: Pow! Pow! Pow! The Observer looked up at the noise, startled. That morning, someone had gone into an elementary school somewhere far away and did the unthinkable. Somewhere, classrooms stank of blood. Pow! Pow! Pow! And in that moment, The Observer realized the room had fallen silent — as silent, anyway, as a restaurant full of families ever gets. The murmur of adult conversation seemed to have instantly stilled. I looked around, and all over the room, people were staring, their faces in bone-deep pain, like the faces at a funeral. No one spoke, or seemed to move. The waitress, oblivious, kept on — Pow! Pow! Pow! — the balloons seeming to evaporate before the blade. The people watched her from their tables, not seeming to breathe. For a good 10 seconds, it was like that: a sad, thorough silence, punctuated by a sound kissing close to gunshots. And The Observer knew that every
grown mind in the room was probably thinking the same thought on this saddest of days: Why? It’s hard to believe it happened, even though The Observer was there, but it did: a room full of people brought to spontaneous, silent mourning. It was one of the most surreal and beautiful moments I’ve ever witnessed in my life. Finally, the waitress finished, then stood there, working her jaw and shaking the noise out of her ear with the tip of her finger. Only then did the assembled congregation turn back to their families. A YOUNG WOMAN THE OBSERVER knows well said in the wake of the slaughter of 20 children by yet another deranged white boy with access to a semi-automatic assault rifle that she was behind the Founders 100 percent: They meant for people to have guns and so we should. And those guns, she said, should be exactly the same guns the Founders had in mind when they conceived the 2nd Amendment: muzzle-loaders, smooth-bore pistols whose flint had to be precisely knapped, the Kentucky rifle pea-shooters. HEDGING OUR BETS that the celestial curtain will not, after all, fall on the 21st, we are still shopping for the 25th. (It’s our opinion that the Mayans just ran out of room on that round stone they were carving the future into. You know, like when you try to letter a banner or something and you end up with “welcome hom.”) Nothingness is no excuse. What some don’t get is that it’s the journey, as is said ad nauseum these days. It’s the thinking of and procuring the perfect item. This year, The Observer and Spouse have gotten each other the same present, as betrayed by the shape and feel of the two wrapped packages under the tree. So I guess the Mayans were right. Hell has frozen over. It’s lights out.
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DECEMBER 19, 2012
IN S IDE R
Legislator makes case for veterans home
Look cityward, evangels, for dough
CONTINUED ON PAGE 13 12
DECEMBER 19, 2012
Files bill to replace Little Rock facility. BY CHEREE FRANCO
We’ll probably never know what really happened — whether she was clipped or spooked or just took an unlucky spill at just the wrong moment — but witnesses told police that McConnell’s bike fell into the passenger side of the car. According to the accident report, she made contact at the passenger’s front door handle of the Ford, then scraped along the side to the rear fender. At that point, she was caught up in the rear wheel of the car and run over. Since the accident, bicyclists who knew McConnell — some of whom have had their own close calls with cars — have been speaking out, calling for more work and discussion to make the streets of Little Rock safer for bicyclists.
wo Pulaski County legislators plan to tackle the issue of veteran housing in the upcoming General Assembly, in the wake of the November closure of the Little Rock Veterans Home for safety and financial reasons. Rep. John Edwards (DLittle Rock) wants the 100-bed home replaced with a new facility; Rep. Jane English (R-North Little Rock) wants to establish a task force of representatives from private veterans groups, the state Department of Veterans Affairs and the State Building Authority, to oversee research into veterans’ needs, the cost of meeting them and options that exist. In recent years, both the Little Rock home and the 108-bed Fayetteville Veterans Home have been logistic and publicity nightmares for the Department of Veterans Affairs. Little Rock home administrator Janet Levine was fired by the state director of Veterans Affairs after an investigation discovered she’d collected nearly $600,000 in illegal fees, continuing a policy that had been changed in 2009. The state director was later asked to resign by Gov. Mike Beebe. (Levine settled a termination without due process suit against the state for $150,000.) In Fayetteville, inspections of the veterans home found a laundry list of violations, including poor wound care, lack of food and dirty catheters. In October 2012 the director of the Fayetteville home resigned. Edwards is convinced that Arkansas can do better. A National Guard member who served in Iraq, Edwards has a reputation as a legislative advocate for fellow military. He’s pushed through two veterans job bills, and last year he made unannounced visits to both veterans homes. He was appalled by the general condition of the Little Rock
CONTINUED ON PAGE 26
CONTINUED ON PAGE 25
The city of Little Rock is negotiating a contract with the Union Rescue Mission to run its outpost for the homeless on Confederate Boulevard, apparently unbothered by the organization’s hiring requirements: Only members of “evangelical Christian churches” may apply for the day center jobs, which will be paid with taxpayer dollars. It’s perfectly legal, City Attorney Tom Carpenter says, as long as the Christians — not social-working Jews, mind you, atheists or maybe even Episcopalians — don’t proselytize at work. However, the city is still researching the law to make sure the contract doesn’t violate the First Amendment’s separation of church and state to guard against liability, Assistant City Attorney Kim Chavis said. Homeless advocate Robert Johnston notes that the evangelical group sought applicants from the job in November for people who’d be hired contingent on getting the city business. The announcement said these things are required of applicants: “Personal commitment to Jesus Christ and lives under the authority of Scripture”; “Professional and personal life reflects integrity, personal responsibility and Christian character”; “A servant’s heart and compassion for those who are lost, and are hurting yet not an enabler”; “Willing to sign the Union Rescue Mission’s Statement of Faith”; “A current member or regular attendee of a local evangelical Christian church”; and “Able to fully support the core values and philosophy of ministry held by URM.” Union Rescue Mission Director William Tollette said Tuesday the advertisement’s use of the word “evangelical” should be interpreted as simply Christian. Couldn’t the city hire nonbelievers to work with the homeless? Rent a building without providing sweetheart payola to a community group? Carpenter said the city sometimes needs to contract services it can’t provide, and compared the Union Rescue Mission contract to others the city has entered into with religious groups in its Prevention, Intervention, Treatment programs. The building that will house the day resource center, which the Union Rescue Mission shucked so it could move to better quarters across the street, has been undergoing repairs since September 2011.
SHARING: Tom Ezell, on his bicycle.
After the fall In the wake of tragedy, bicyclists call for safer streets, more education in LR. BY DAVID KOON
iane McConnell, who’d been rendered unconscious since a Nov. 11 accident in which she was hit by a car while riding her bicycle in the Heights, died Tuesday. On the day of the accident, McConnell was riding her bike home after attending the “Pop Up Main Street” event near downtown. The secretary of the Arkansas Bicycle Club, she’d been an avid bicyclist for decades, taking classes and wearing her helmet and fluorescent vest to try and stay safe. The day was clear and bright. Approaching the gentle curve on Kavanaugh a block off Cantrell just before 2 p.m., a Ford Fusion came up behind McConnell, then started to pass on the double yellow.
MAIN STREET CREATIVE CORRIDOR
Two architects unveiled the city of Little Rock’s master plan for a cultural corridor on Main Street last week. The city used a $150,000 Our Town Grant from the National Endowment for the Arts to hire Marlon Blackwell, private architect and department head of the Fay Jones School of Architecture at the University of Arkansas, and Steve Luoni, director of the University of Arkansas Community Design Center, to create the plan. Their vision for the 300 block to 600 block of Main Street that they call “The Creative Corridor: A Main Street Revitalization” was vivid and grandiose, full of all the sorts of things New Urbanists salivate over — a pedestrian promenade, rain gardens, street furniture, LED lighting installations. If it were realized, they said, Little Rock would be a beacon for urban design the world over (Mayor Mark Stodola, in his introduction, said the plan was one of only two master plans to be shortlisted in an international master plan contest). But, as the mayor acknowledged, whether it’s implemented or not is largely up to private dollars. Main Street is currently undergoing about $60 million in development, the mayor noted. To see a PDF of a planned book detailing the master plan, visit arktimes.com/creativecorridor.
Looking north from the the 400 block at night.
Looking northwest into the Capitol Avenue plaza.
Roof terrace of the proposed building on the east side of the 400 block.
Tune in to the Times’ “Week In Review” podcast each Friday. Available on iTunes & arktimes.com
Baldwin in Little Rock A quick dispatch from the two “Cameras in Court” events we co-sponsored last week with the Clinton School for Public Service and the Little Rock Film Festival. On Wednesday, the Argenta Film Series presented a screening of “Paradise Lost,” the documentary about the murder of three small boys in West Memphis. Thursday, the Clinton School hosted a panel discussion on the use of video cameras in courtrooms at the Clinton Library. Times editor Lindsey Millar moderated discussions between Jason Baldwin, one of the three men wrongly imprisoned for the murders, and Times contributing editor Mara Leveritt, who wrote the book “Devil’s Knot” about the case. Together, the two events drew more than 700 people. Baldwin and his girlfriend, Holly Ballard, live in Seattle now. Baldwin’s taking community-college classes towards a bachelor’s degree. He said he may try to go to law school one day. On Thursday, he and longtime supporter John Hardin announced the formation of a non-profit, Proclaim Justice, to advocate on behalf of those imprisoned for crimes they didn’t commit. Asked if he ever became jaded during his imprisonment, the long appeals process and the intense media scrutiny of the case, Baldwin said he hadn’t. “My spirit was always soaring, even though my body was going through hard times. ... There was no room for being jaded.” He briefly recalled the early days of his life in prison, when everyone thought of him as a triple child murderer instead of an innocent man. The inmates were all waiting on him, he said, resulting in “broken bones.” But many eventually came to believe he was wrongfully convicted. “The day I got there,” he said, “it was all curses and ‘wish you were dead’ and spitting and beatings.” By the time he left, he said, it was all hugs and tears. “There’s a phrase that goes around. People say: ‘Things happen for a reason,’ “ Baldwin said. “I believe that. But I also believe you can choose the reason.”
Looking north from the 600 block.
A story last week (“Gay Walmart group PRIDE comes out”) erroneously said that Walmart operates six stores in New York City. There are no Walmart stores in New York City.
DECEMBER 19, 2012
IDEAS FOR ARKANSAS
n what’s become an annual tradition, the Arkansas Times recently solicited suggestions from readers and a variety of experts on how to make Arkansas a better place to live. We present their ideas here and hope you find them as inspirational as we do. If any especially strike a chord with you, help make them happen. Unlike years past, when some of the big ideas we featured were more provocative than feasible (such as re-routing the Arkansas River to bring Little Rock and North Little Rock together with a shared park), all of this year’s Big Ideas could be achieved. Many are works in progress; those that aren’t only lack the right mix of advocates to be realized.
GIVE ART JOBS TO TEEN-AGERS BY LESLIE NEWELL PEACOCK
DECEMBER 19, 2012
ohn Gaudin has so many ideas for North Little Rock it’s a wonder his head isn’t the circumference of Verizon Arena. The man who has spearheaded numerous arts-related developments in Argenta has embarked on yet another: The Art Connection, his plan “to get kids off the streets and into art and art jobs.” So far, it’s working. The 20 high school students selected for the inaugural program are working three nights a week at an enviable job: They’re painting, with instruction from North Little Rock artist Angela Green and under the direction of Pammi Fabert, whose vision and energy is ideally suited to Gaudin’s. Fabert has used the typical teenage job of flipping hamburgers as a metaphor, telling the students “these paintings are your hamburgers.” Students have to arrive at their classes, on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday nights, on time; they’ll get docked if they’re late and if they don’t take their job seriously, they’ll lose it. If that sounds less like work and more like fun, consider this: These students had huge success at their
TAKING IT SERIOUSLY: Aundarius Stackhouse works on a painting.
LAUNCH A MAKER FAIRE BY LESLIE NEWELL PEACOCK
ohn Gaudin has another idea up his sleeve: He wants to bring the maker movement to North Little Rock. The Argenta Innovation Center, in the same building that Art Connection occupies, would serve as a collaborative space for young entrepreneurs who would be focused on making their ideas tangible. Gaudin has applied for a Maker Faire license so that someday he can host such a fair, where creative types display their inventions, in North Little Rock. Think 3D printers, robots, life-sized Mousetrap games, colored fire, a Gaudi structure recreated in toothpicks, a subwoofer powered by a bicycle (the “stompodium”) — all featured in a recent Maker Faire in San Mateo, Calif. Gaudin anticipates that Art Connection artists and the makers next door will bounce ideas off one another, a ping-pong game of creativity and another score for Argenta.
first exhibit at November’s Argenta ArtWalk, all selling something and some selling all their work. That means they have to keep producing. The program is about more than money, of course: It’s about putting at-risk kids in a situation in which they can see the results of work, take pride in it and learn to be self-sufficient so they can succeed in the adult world. Fabert has seen one of her shyest artists blossom, acting as host to the hordes who attended their opening. Gaudin’s inspiration came from another big idea: the Artists for Humanity paid apprenticeship program in Boston founded two decades ago. The more than 200 teen-aged participants in that program earned nearly $800,000 last year, according to its website. “It’s an incredible model,” Gaudin
said. After seeing how the Boston program worked, Gaudin said he and fellow philanthropist Harold Tenenbaum “were determined to launch the program” in North Little Rock. They got financial commitments both public and private, renovated space at 204 E. Fourth St., hired Fabert and went to North Little Rock’s high schools to find interested students. Sixty-seven students interviewed, but so far the program only has funds for 20. Gaudin said the program sought a diverse demographic from all over the city. Next summer, Art Connection students will have summer jobs in art-related fields, Gaudin said, such as mural-painting. With a year’s example to show, director Fabert will seek out new investors to grow the program, which she would like to see statewide.
CONNECTING: Students make art, money.
GAUDIN: Making plans.
DECEMBER 19, 2012
VIDEO RECORD JUDICIAL TRIALS BY MARA LEVERITT
n response to the tragedy of the West Memphis case, the Arkansas Supreme Court should require courts to video-record, stream and archive all trials — with only a few, carefully considered exceptions — to improve access to court proceedings, heighten understanding of judicial processes and promote accountability.
EXONERATE THE WEST MEMPHIS THREE BY MARA LEVERITT
I HAFNER: The chicken is a microcosm of sustainability.
GRANTS FOR BACKYARD CHICKENS BY JAYCE HAFNER
rkansas is at the top of the pecking order when it comes to chicken. Tyson Foods, a major supplier of both broilers and eggs, is based in Arkansas. But chickens remain far from people, far from nature, kept in the dark recesses of an industrial hen house. It doesn’t have to be this way. Perhaps the most compelling virtue of the chicken is that it’s a microcosm of sustainability. You can feed your table scraps to the chickens, and the chickens will fertilize your grass, produce fresh, delicious eggs, and weed your garden, ultimately helping you to get food back on the table. It’s a closedloop production cycle, and a symbiotic relationship. Chickens lay so much that you often have more eggs than you need, and you can sell the surplus to the neighbors, or donate them to your food bank, contributing to a local, more self-sufficient economy (and in this time of financial uncertainty, self-suffi-
DECEMBER 19, 2012
ciency can’t be underestimated). These birds have a way of bringing neighbors and friends together around a common agricultural project, strengthening communities, and nurturing social sustainability. We see the power of the backyard chicken taking off across the nation. Zoning laws are adapting to support backyard chicken projects in suburbia; inner-city 8th graders are raising chickens in their school yard to supplement their biology curriculum, and higher education institutions (including Hendrix College) are implementing student-run chicken-raising clubs. These birds are contagious, and it’s time to capitalize on the momentum of our time. I propose a statewide grant program to promote and support backyard chicken-raising in Arkansas. The fund would allocate small grants to churches, secondary schools, university student groups and community centers (who are most likely to enjoy both a vibrant social network and the property nec-
essary to comply with zoning laws) with a demonstrated commitment to sustainable development. Recipients of each grant would receive funds sufficient to build a small, portable chicken coop for rotational grazing for 4 to 12 hens, to purchase and vaccinate the chicks and to buy standard equipment (feeder, heat lamp, and water trough). After the chickens mature and begin to lay, they will begin to pay for themselves. “Chicken tenders” can assure their neighbors of noise control by avoiding rooster-raising all together. Perhaps most importantly, this backyard chicken grant program will foster a relationship between consumer sand their food source. Rather than objects, these birds can be valued and appreciated personalities.
Jayce Hafner initiated the successful moveable chicken coop program in 2010 at Hendrix College, where she majored in International Relations and won a Fulbright Scholarship.
f state officials believe the West Memphis Three are guilty of murdering three children, why did they free one from death row and two from life in prison? If the men are innocent, as most believe, the state should own up to the train-wreck of errors that kept them in prison for nearly 18 years. The official “guiltybut-free” stance is a cynical farce, a mockery of justice; contemptuous and contemptible. Exonerate the West Memphis Three. Investigate those murders for real.
Mara Leveritt is a contributing editor to the Arkansas Times and the author of the books “The Boys on the Tracks” and “Devil’s Knot.”
ALLOW VOTING BY MAIL BY KARAMA NEAL
llow Arkansans to vote by mail like they do in Oregon. Pair that with the automatic registration at 18, and we could make some real progress in civic participation.
Karama Neal is director of Southern Bancorp Community Partners.
HELP DELTA STUDENTS ATTEND COLLEGE BY GABRIEL FOTSING
uring my first year of teaching at Lee High School, I had multiple seniors coming to me during their spring semester. They wanted help with their college applications, and I gladly accepted. Unfortunately, for most of them there was nothing I could do. Some had never taken the ACT or the SAT, which meant that they could not apply. Others, who had taken the test, had not scored high enough to gain admission. Fu r t h e r m o re, so many had not filled out their FAFSA and therefore did not qualify for financial aid. Frustrated, I deFOTSING cided to shake things up a bit. We started offering college prep workshops dealing with every aspect of the college application process, from picking a college, to prepping for the ACT, to filling out the FAFSA. We’ve had some success; a student of ours is at Washington University in St. Louis on full scholarship, another was the first at our school to receive the Gates Millennium Scholarship, and the class of 2012 beat all school records in terms of scholarship money. We want to duplicate this at other schools throughout the Delta. With these in mind I decided to start the College Initiative, a nonprofit agency that will provide motivated, college-capable low-income students with both the tools and the mentorship necessary to enter into and complete a four-year college degree program. My experience in the Delta has taught me one thing: no kid grows up wanting to be mediocre or average, let alone below average. All students want better lives for themselves and their families, and they understand the crucial advantage they would gain from a college education. However, they cannot do this alone. It takes a village to raise a child.
Gabriel Fotsing is a native of Cameroon and a Harvard graduate who first came to Arkansas in 2010 through Teach for America.
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DECEMBER 19, 2012
BUILD THE ROSE CREEK TRAIL BY MASON ELLIS
or many years now, residents of Stifft Station and Capitol View have steadily pushed for the Rose Creek Trail to connect their neighborhoods directly to the River Trail. For the most part, the river trail is nearly inaccessible by bike for all but the extremely fit cyclists who can power up Overlook Drive at the west end or brave heavy street traffic to access the trail downtown on the east end. However, along the Union Pacific rail line, a trail could be built from the riverfront all the way to Fourche Creek and Interstate Park on the south end of Little Rock. Much of the trail between the State Capitol and Central High could follow
an abandoned right of way alongside the current track line that is already level and even includes a bridge across Seventh Street that is currently without track and is not being used. This trail could also connect to many existing east/west bike corridors like the new 12th Street bike lanes, the Third Street route that is heavily trafficked by bikes and is to be painted with bike-share markers (known as sharrows) soon, or Seventh Street, which is a popular bike connection between UAMS and downtown. Important points along the route include the River Trail connection, Union Station, Capitol View, Stifft Station, the Stephens and Central High neighborhoods, the Central High National Historic Site, Barton Coliseum
and the Fairgrounds, South End Neighborhood, Interstate Park and Fourche Creek. Let’s build this vital bike and pedestrian path to connect the river trail and downtown, to connect visitors to the Central High National Historic site as well as students to their homes, and reconnect Little Rock neighborhoods to each other that have been divided physically and economically by I-630. Such a crucial connection has great potential to build strong and active communities and revitalize and energize a significant portion of Little Rock.
Mason Ellis is an intern architect at Witsell Evans Rasco Architects and Planners.
ENACT CAMPAIGN FINANCE REFORM BY ERIC FRANCIS
e should amend the state Constitution so that you can only make campaign contributions (for, against, or independent of ) to candidates or ballot issues if you meet these three requirements: 1) You must be an individual person and United States citizen; 2) You must be legally eligible to register to vote; and 3) You may only make such a contribution if you are eligible to vote on the issue in question. That’s it. No corporations, no unions, no PACs, no special interests. Only individuals get to spend their hard-earned money deciding who or what gets the nod (or the boot) in an election, and only in the elections they actually have a constitutionally mandated voice in. That is how you return the power in politics to the people.
Eric Francis is a freelance writer and the former editor of The North Little Rock Times.
TURN AN ARKANSAS PRISON INTO A COLLEGE BY VIC SNYDER
he Arkansas Prison system has really done a remarkable job getting inmates to take GED classes and pass them. They have so many graduates. What do you have when you have that many people together pursuing an education? A college. We should convert one of the state’s prison units into a full-time, five-day-a-week college. Most inmates in Arkansas prisons will be released one day. Continuing to expand efforts to educate them can only improve the chances they’ll successfully reintegrate into society once they’re released.
Vic Snyder is corporate medical director for external affairs at Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield. He represented Arkansas’s 2nd Congressional District from 1997 to 2011. 18
DECEMBER 19, 2012
ADD A COMMUNITY SERVICE COMPONENT TO LOTTERY SCHOLARSHIP BY ROBERT LOWRY
he generation in and just out of high school values community and volunteerism more than most in recent memory. The Arkansas Lottery scholarship should encourage that spirit by adding a volunteerism component. I propose that every graduate who qualifies under the current rules should get 100 percent of the lottery scholarship
VISIT A DETAINED IMMIGRANT BY SARA MULLALLY
veryone should take the time to visit an immigrant in jail, prison or a detention center. It is an eye-opening experience that will redefine the comfortable line you’ve drawn between yourself and those inside. I participate in a program through Arkansas Interfaith Conference, where the only goal is to provide a friendly visit to an immigrant in jail. Immigrant detainees often have no visitors for one or many reasons. Their families fear having to present an ID or may have no way to get to the jail, and some detainees simply have no family for miles. Immigrants can be taken into custody over something as petty as a traffic violation. Once they are in the immigration system, they may be transferred multiple times while awaiting trial or deportation. While detainees are shipped to what can be deplorable, dehumanizing facilities, their families are left in the dark, wondering where their loved ones will end up. The detainees say that even visits from perfect strangers help them cope. It helps them feel human again, rather than being relegated to some Alien Identification Number. As visitors, we gain so much. Through connecting with these forgotten people, our views on immigration and criminal justice are influenced by what happens to the real people we have come to know. Afterwards, we can’t look at our society with the same naive eyes. It’s transformative to see how our government policies affect children, friends, families, and communities. The policies championed at the Capitol take on a different hue when viewed from the perspective of a beleaguered stranger, shielded from the public’s view.
Sara Mullally is co-founder of El Zocalo Immigrant Resource Center. She teaches Spanish in the North Little Rock School District.
award for their freshman year. This will allow students to make the transition and get their feet firmly planted in college life. In subsequent years, qualifying students should receive only 50 percent of the award unless they fulfill some sort of community service. For fulfilling the community service obligation, students would receive the full award. Continuation of the full scholarship beyond the
freshman year would depend on both academic performance and service to the campus and community. The intent of the lottery scholarship is to elevate the number of our high school graduates who can afford college. That is a worthy goal and should be continued. But success in college is about more than just grades. It is about growing into thoughtful, productive and good citizens.
A service component underscores the notion that this scholarship is about not only the lives of individual students, but the life we share in this great state.
The Reverend Dr. Robert Lowry is a transitional teaching elder at First and Harmony Presbyterian Churches in Clarksville.
Holiday Greetings and Greasy Season! It is very important to pay attention to what you put down the drain. Grease is our number one enemy. It clogs your lines, our lines, and some of it gets into our treatment facilities. Grease is responsible for 70-80% of dry weather overflows.
Little Rock Wastewater is offering a way to dispose of kitchen oils and grease FREE to Little Rock residents.
It’s easy! When you’re finished cooking, pour your oil or grease into the can lined with a heat-resistant bag (provided in the starter kit). When the bag is full, tie it up and place it in the garbage.
Little Rock residents may request a FREE Can the Grease starter kit by calling 501-688-1490. For more information, call 501-688-1490 or email our Customer Assistance Department at firstname.lastname@example.org.
DECEMBER 19, 2012
PROMOTE SOCIAL ENTREPRENEURSHIP
BY JAMIE K. FUGITT
lake Mycoskie launched Tom’s Shoes in 2006 after he befriended shoeless children in Argentina. Instead of launching a non-profit, he created a company that gave a pair of new shoes to a child in need every time it sold a pair of shoes at retail. Within the first year Blake delivered 10,000 pairs of shoes to the source of his inspiration — children in Argentina. By the close of 2011, his company had given over 2 million pairs of shoes to children in need all over the world. Tom’s Shoes is a cool idea and a great company. Mycoskie, like other social entrepreneurs, targeted a problem and built a world-class solution that also makes money. Under this model, Mycoskie has made a greater impact in a far shorter amount of time than he likely ever could have under a traditional public service model. Mycoskie is one of the more prominent examples of a social entrepreneur. These innovators understand that the next leaders in public service must be as skilled in business as they are in program planning. They think of success in terms of a triple bottom line — people, planet and profit. Little Rock should be the hub of social innovation. Social-focused startups, like any emerging industry, need three primary building blocks — talent, community and money. We have the talent. Each year nearly
FUGITT: Social entrepreneurship a natural fit with Clinton School.
a hundred students attend the Clinton School of Public Service in Little Rock, coming from across the globe and from a variety of backgrounds. They are the best and brightest of the world’s servicefocused professionals and are naturally inclined to tackle big social problems. While they are here the Clinton School educates and inspires them with a “hands-on,” world-class program. They learn to identify complex
problems, plan innovative solutions and execute their plan to create tangible social good. However, after their time with the Clinton School many leave. Admittedly those who leave blaze trails of good across the world. But I (selfishly) wish more of them would stay. We should put more emphasis on social innovation in the Clinton School curriculum. We should encourage these
students to launch and seed their passion, whatever it is, right here in Little Rock. We should give them the tools to do so in the hands-on, real-world way the Clinton School teaches. Their reach can still be global, but their headquarters can be local. We have the community. A growing number of entrepreneurs, mentors, technology whizzes, designers, government programs and service professionals have built a community in Arkansas and are laying the foundation for the next generation of innovators. We should encourage the Clinton School students to tap into this resource. The reach and power of the Clinton School network itself would also be unmatched in public-good circles. We have the money. A growing number of funding sources, both private and government, are investing and helping emerging companies grow in this state. We should connect the Clinton School students to this potential and let them know that the funding they need is in their backyard. Little Rock could be the center for social innovation in this country. We have the building blocks. Let’s put them together and then build on top.
Jamie K. Fugitt is an attorney with Williams & Anderson, a mentor for the ARK Challenge, the Arkansas Director of Cleantech open and a board member of the Arkansas Motion Picture Institute.
CREATE A HOMELESS SHELTER FOR LGBT YOUNG ADULTS BY PENELOPE POPPERS
ll of the cards are stacked against lesbian, gay, bisexual transgender homeless individuals, specifically young adults. While LGBT people make up a very small portion of the general population (5 to 10 percent), LGBT people make up a large portion of the homeless population (20 to 40 percent). Yet, several shelters and services in the area are not able to properly handle or address the specific that LGBT individuals face, especially transgender folks. In our area shelters, residents are gendered according to what their ID says, not necessarily
DECEMBER 19, 2012
by how they actually live, identify or present themselves. In a perfect world, clients would be able to self-designate their gender, regardless of whether or not they’ve had gender reassignment surgery. When you begin this conversation, inevitably someone will say, “What if men pretend to be women, simply to get inside women’s shelters to rape and abuse residents?” But in California, many shelters have allowed transgender people to self-designate for years and, according to a Human Rights Commission investigator, this situation has never come up. But if you force a trans woman to stay in a men’s dorm, there
are plenty of opportunities for harassment and rape, and historically, that is happening. I recently formed an organization called Lucie’s Place in Little Rock to work with LGBT homeless individuals, specifically young adults. In early 2013 we hope to begin two programs: emergency short-term housing and free counseling services, both specifically available to LGBT young adults who are currently homeless or at risk of becoming homeless. In 2014, Lucie’s Place hopes to open a long-term home specifically for LGBT identified homeless young adults — the first of it’s kind
in the state. Lucie’s Place Transitional Living Program (TLP) will be a place where young, homeless, LGBT adults will be able to openly live as themselves, while developing the skills necessary for their future independence. For several of our residents, this home will be the first place they have ever lived where they can be open about who they truly are, without the fear of repercussions from parents.
Penelope Poppers is the organizer of Food not Bombs and a co-founder of Lucie’s Place.
OFFER LATE-NIGHT BUS ROUTES BY JAMES SZENHER
tion from Little Rock and North Little Rock (as the routes would promote economic consumption and keep drunk drivers off the road), federal grants, rider fees and advertising (nightlife businesses might buy targeted advertising). Outfit the buses with a nightlife theme, and promote the new service with a marketing campaign aimed at the nightlife crowd. The night service would likely diversify the base of regular bus riders, which could increase ridership during the daytime and eventually lead to demand for more routes, more frequent stops and improved service for all riders.
James Szenher is information and communications coordinator at the Arkansas Public Policy Panel and a bassist and vocalist in the band Tsar Bomba.
he Central Arkansas Transit Authority should offer limited late-night bus routes. The end times of current service hours — 8:15 p.m. on weekdays, 6:20 p.m. on Saturday and 4:15 p.m. on Sunday — effectively strand those without transportation at night and encourage drunk driving. CAT could start with four routes that run from 6 p.m. to 2 a.m. on weeknights and Sunday and 6 p.m. to 6 a.m. on Friday and Saturday: Markham/Chenal from the River Market to the Promenade; Kavanaugh/University/Chicot from Markham to Mabelvale Cut-Off; Roosevelt/Asher/Col. Glenn from airport to Barrow and Arch/Broadway/NLR Main/JFK from Interstate Park to McCain. This is a proposed sketch; research would help determine ideal routes, stops and times. The program could be funded through a contribu-
CREATE A STATE DIVISION OF FOOD SECURITY TO PROVIDE LOCAL ORGANIC FOOD TO THE NEEDIEST BY BRIAN C. CAMPBELL
he contemporary U.S. food system is unsustainable and precarious. In addition to the distance our food travels, we have an over-reliance on non-renewable fossil fuels, an over-use of irrigation water, an over-application of biocides that poison drinking water and destroy the natural fertility of agricultural lands, and a dependence on a monoculture production of few crop varieties. If the industrial food system falters, people in Arkansas and beyond will be without food. U.S. Department of Agriculture statistics show that Arkansas currently has the lowest food security in the country, and the highest rate of childhood hunger in the nation, with nearly 25 percent of Arkansas kids going hungry. Our rates of obesity and diabetes also rank among the highest in the nation. While Arkansas engages significantly in U.S. industrial agriculture, we fail to address the most basic needs of our citizens. We have a volunteer food bank
system working tirelessly, but it primarily distributes food donated by corporations, which tend to be unhealthy and contribute to our obesity and diabetes epidemics. I propose that the Arkansas Agriculture Department should create a Division of Food Security, with leadership trained in agroecology and the social sciences of poverty, that prioritizes the production of local organic food (not commodities) and works collaboratively with the existing food security structure (food banks, hunger relief agencies, etc.) to ensure that the impoverished have access to healthy food. This division would re-allocate corporate donations in strategic ways to ensure that local, organic, healthy foods receive the subsidies that industrial commodity production currently enjoys. (In 2010, Walmart pledged a $2 billion commitment to fight domestic hunger and the USDA paid $443,214,770 in agricultural subsidies to Arkansas’s industrial farms). In this Food Security Division, each county would designate some public lands (perhaps adjacent to a public
library) as food security farms, where farmers trained in organic agricultural production would grow locally adapted foods to be donated to food pantries for redistribution to the needy. These food security farms would house seed banks and serve as demonstration sites for testing out and saving seeds from locally adapted crop varieties, to ensure that the state has the genetics necessary to produce food sustainably in the coming years of global warming, and to host public workshops on how to build and manage backyard organic gardens. This food security division would also subsidize local organic produce in the private sector to level the playing field with large-scale industrial agriculture, so that Arkansas consumers can choose healthier options in the grocery store and we can rejuvenate local economies through the development of new family farms. Much of this is happening already, despite federal and state policy that makes it difficult. A range of dedicated,
hard-working organic farmers, non-profits and activist-entrepreneurs have overcome myriad obstacles to address Arkansas’s agriculture dilemma in an ad hoc fashion, attempting local food security on less than a shoestring budget. Still, the problem of accessibility for the general public remains. Imagine if the creativity and practical knowledge of these lowbudget operations had some government support. Inaccessibility remains the biggest knock against local organic food. An Arkansas Division of Food Security could bridge this gap, simultaneously making healthy food available to all levels of wage earners, ensuring local food availability in case of emergencies, strengthening our local economies, and reducing preventable diseases.
Brian Campbell is associate professor of anthropology at the University of Central Arkansas and director of CAAH! Conserving Arkansas’s Agricultural Heritage and Ozarkadia Films. www.arktimes.com
DECEMBER 19, 2012
USE DISTANCE LEARNING TO RAISE THE CEILING FOR HIGH SCHOOL ACHIEVERS
A PURSE MUSEUM FOR SOMA BY LESLIE NEWELL PEACOCK
BY CALVIN SMITH
nita Davis, creator of the Bernice Sculpture Garden (a public park on private land at 1401 S. Main St.), restorer of buildings just south of the garden and mastermind of the cornbread man mural that increases the joy factor in The Root restaurant parking lot at 1500 S. Main, can be credited with much of the new life along Main Street south of Interstate 630. It’s been a boon to the Southside Main Street (SOMA) goals, with the sculpture garden providing a stage for Arkansas artists, a home for the new Cornbread Festival and a farmer’s market in summer and the renovations attracting the Green Corner Store, StudioMain and Boulevard Bread Co. to the block. Next year, Davis will add to the mix a museum that should attract everyone who loves a handbag and history, an exhibit that reveals female identity in the 20th century — as Tim O’Brien’s “The Things They Carried” illustrated the life of a soldier, so will Davis’ purses illustrate women’s history. Davis’ purse collection — which now totals around 2,000 — has been on display at the Historic Arkansas Museum and Smith Kramer has toured an exhibition of the collection for five years all over the country, from Sacramento to Columbia, S.C. While they were on the road, Davis turned her energies to SOMA. “I thought I was over purses,” she laughed. “This [SOMA] was so much more.” “Then these huge crates of purses came back,” after the tour, Davis said. They were curated, ready for display. The one-story building occupied by Stageworks, next door to The Root (nee the Sweden Creme drive-in), became available when the business moved to North Little Rock and Davis bought it, a museum in mind. The first change to the building: the cornbread man mural, by Steven Otis and Shannon Wallace, went up on its north wall, facing The Root; “I wanted to honor the cornbread festival,” Davis said,
DAVIS: ON THE LINE, invigorating South Main.
“and thought how fun it would be to have this silly thing up on the wall,” especially for children. Second: a renovation of the building as a museum, with the help of architect Kwendeche, artist Otis and historian Sara Drew. Davis is working on the collection to freshen it up, and hopes to have the museum open in late spring 2013. The collection will be one any woman can relate to, Davis said; rather than an exhibit of Gucci bags through the ages, “mine
is more what people would remember as what their mothers or grandmothers would carry,” along with contents that will remind viewers how women’s lives have changed, from calling cards and cigarette holders to condoms. SOMA’s generous idea person says her work on Main has been “the best thing I could have ever done for myself.” You can be sure culture seekers and downtown Little Rock will find it a good thing, too.
n the last decade, Arkansas has made significant strides in giving more high school students the opportunity to pursue higher education. Adequacy funding and the implementation of Common Core standards have helped ensure that all school districts, regardless of demographic make-up, provide students with a foundation of education necessary for them to pursue higher education. But that doesn’t mean all Arkansas high school graduates are equally prepared for college. What about students with abilities beyond what their schools offer? Every school, regardless of demographics, has students who are achieving to the highest reaches of their schooling. The problem is that achievement tops out too early for many kids. It’s not logistically possibly for some lower-achieving schools to offer the variety of AP and college-level courses that higher-performing ones do. The state Department of Education should embrace distance learning to reach high school students who are reaching their ceiling too early. Imagine, for instance, a physics professor at the University of Arkansas delivering a lecture through streaming video online or through the same Interactive Video Network Units UAMS uses between its Little Rock and Fayetteville campuses to schools across the state. One professor could reach scores of students scattered across the state. The high-speed fiber optic Arkansas Research and Education Optical Network already connects most of the state’s public universities and extends to all four corners of the state. We should expand it into high schools. Meanwhile, much distance learning technology only requires a basic Internet connection, and the University of Arkansas System is on its way to becoming a leader in distance learning technology. Why not piggyback on its efforts?
Calvin Smith is director of business development at UAMS Northwest campus. 22
DECEMBER 19, 2012
SHIFT PET POPULATION CONTROL TACTICS
CRAZY DAVE'S CARPET OUTLET
BY JENNIFER CARMAN
(6"3"/5&&%-08&4513*$& 12 Months No Interest, Same As Cash*
t is time for the city of Little Rock to get serious about reducing our pet population crisis. Cities around the nation have demonstrated that this is indeed possible, largely through policies that shift funds away from impounding and euthanasia and, instead, direct them toward free spay and neuter programs. The cost of sterilization is utterly nominal compared to the cost of impounding, sheltering and euthanizing the many unwanted pets that strays produce over their lifetime. Taxpayers foot the bill for this either way, so it only makes sense to exercise both moral and fiscal responsibility. We could liaise with officials in other cities where such programs have been successful. One such program operates in the city of Pittsburgh. That program (run by the cityâ€™s Animal Care and Control Bureau) currently provides free spaying or neutering for up to five animals per household, the maximum number that city residents are allowed to own. Furthermore, the program enables residents to bring feral cats found in their neighborhood for sterilization procedures as well. Though the city
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experimented briefly with low-cost and discounted sterilization options, they ultimately discontinued these methods in favor of a universal free option. Ultimately, a mobile spayneuter clinic or vehicle would be ideal, and there are excellent mobile programs (like one in Kansas City) from which we could draw inspiration. For the safety of animals, drivers and pedestrians alike, a program such as this could truly revolutionize one of Little Rockâ€™s most heartbreaking problems. Mississippi River
CREATE A TOOL-LENDING LIBRARY BY JENNIFER CARMAN
he city of Little Rock should create a tool-lending library of sorts, with a city-owned repository of basic tools and yard equipment that residents could borrow, much like a library book. Many families have sheds full of such equipment that is utilized only once or twice a month, or perhaps even once annually. In these difficult economic times a program such as this might provide just the boost and inspiration needed for individuals who may not otherwise be able to access such commodities. Wouldnâ€™t it be terrific to have a resource where you could borrow a ladder, lawn mower, tile saw, drill, floor nailer, rake, etc.? Items could be secured with a cash deposit or credit card, and residents could check items out for a specified period of time. Maybe patrons could also borrow
â€œhow-toâ€? DIY instruction manuals, and such a library could organize periodic training days to encourage and empower residents of the city to tackle home and community improvement projects. A handful of these programs exist around the country in cities such as Columbus, Berkeley, Atlanta and Seattle. Little Rock is a city in which the historic preservation opportunities are abundant, and programs such as this could be a vital component in the revitalization of homes and communities throughout our city. A Seattle-based non-profit group called Share Starter now offers a free â€œTool Library Starter Kitâ€? to any community interested in starting its own lending library.
Jennifer Carman is the president of J. CARMAN Inc., a fine-art advisory and appraisal firm based in Little Rock.
n e w a dv e n tur e s fo r 201 3
New and improved facilities at your Arkansas state parks make for new experiences to enjoy. Lake Fort Smith State Park will feature 10 new cabins. At Mississippi River State Park, explore exhibits in the new visitor center, and camp at Beech Point Campground. Relax in Petit Jean State Parkâ€™s beautifully restored Mather Lodge. Play the 27-hole course at Village Creek State Park. Make plans for 2013 now. Call 888-AT-PARKS for a free guidebook, or visit ArkansasStateParks.com.
SCAN FOR INFO
ArkansasSt at eParks.com www.arktimes.com
DECEMBER 19, 2012
CUT HEALTH-CARE COSTS, IMPROVE CARE BY DAVID RAMSEY
DECEMBER 19, 2012
n October, the Arkansas Department of Human Services began the Payment Improvement Initiative, a program to lower Medicaid costs and improve the quality of care via a partnership with the state’s biggest private insurance companies, which will create incentives for providers who meet those goals. If the initiative works, the state will save millions of dollars, and healthcare officials across the country will look to Arkansas as they scramble for ideas to “bend the cost curve.” Already, the Kaiser Foundation has lauded the initiative as a “bold effort to cut Medicaid costs [and] add transparency” and the National Association of Medicaid Directors has suggested that Arkansas’s plan could be a model for other states. “The health-care system, including Medicaid in Arkansas, for years has been growing in costs much faster than the economy has been growing, which increasingly puts pressure on all of us to manage cost in some way, while keeping quality high or even improving quality,” DHS director John Selig says. Gov. Mike Beebe and DHS both became convinced, Selig says, that “the core of the problem was our feefor-service payment system where, really, we pay for volume. The more tests you do, the more you get paid for. The more times somebody comes in to see you, the more times you get paid. As long as we were paying for volume and not paying for quality and coordinated care and outcomes, we were going to continue to have this problem.” Some states have tried to get out of this trap by turning to managed care; others, like Massachusetts, have created their own integrated healthcare systems that can essentially act like managed-care companies. “Arkansas [like many] rural states is not in either of those boats,” Selig says. “We really have no managed care to speak of and most people don’t want managed care here. Our belief is that we’d rather run the Medicaid program ourselves and not pay a large fee to somebody. We also
SELIG: DHS plan could become model for other states.
don’t have a large integrated system. In general around the state, you’ve got relatively small hospitals and a lot of independent doctors.” The fresh approach pioneered by Arkansas is to establish a statewide program of incentives and accountability within the existing system of payers and providers, a reform effort that has never been attempted on this scale. One of the initiative’s key innovations is a move toward evaluating quality and costs via “episodes of care.” Rather than looking at providers and procedures in isolation, DHS and their private partners evaluate costs and quality over the entire course of treatment of a condition,
from office visits to hospitalizations to prescribed medications, and so on. “Let’s take a knee replacement,” Selig says. “We look at that entire episode. Who are all the providers involved in that episode of care, from the hospital to the radiologist to the surgeon, and others. We’re going to look at that [entire] period and figure out what it costs to do all that care that’s involved. We’re going to say to the provider, ‘we are going to incentivize you to make sure the care is coordinated and the best practices are used.’ ” The other innovation in the initiative is the public-private partnership. Arkansas Blue Cross Blue Shield and QualChoice, the two largest private
insurance companies in the state, have worked alongside Medicaid on establishing the episodes of care and the standards used to evaluate them. For many providers, Medicaid patients represent less than 20 percent of their practice, so the only way to get buy-in on the initiative was to include other payers. “We work on this project very closely with the private payers,” Selig says. “We want to be giving the same kind of signals and incentives. We don’t want Blue Cross saying something completely different than we do.” Selig is quick to clarify that they are not colluding — private insurance companies will still set their own
BIG IDEAS prices. But they will use the same standards to incentivize providers that Medicaid uses. This kind of coordination between multiple payers is unprecedented on this scale and the federal government is watching closely — Medicare may eventually join the initiative. So far, the Payment Improvement Initiative is focused on five episodes: ADHD, perinatal care, congestive heart failure, joint replacement and upper respiratory infections. Each of these episodes has quality and cost standards developed by meeting with local doctors, as well as employing local and national historical billing data, claims data and evidencebased quality standards. For each episode, the payer (either Medicaid or a private insurance company) will identify a primary doctor, known as the principal account provider (PAP), or as Selig puts it, “the quarterback” (for example, for perinatal care, the PAP would typically by the ob-gyn). The initiative features three broad categories for evaluating the PAP’s episode-of-care costs — if rated “commendable,” the PAP will be rewarded by receiving a bonus payment; if rated “acceptable” they will be paid as normal, and if rated “exceeding the acceptable threshold,” they will be penalized by having part of their reimbursement withheld. By giving one key provider skin in the game, the initiative should produce more motivation to keep costs reasonable, and will also put someone in charge of coordinating the care — not some bureaucrat, but the primary doctor. Coordination not only improves the care the patient receives, it drives down costs, for example, by avoiding multiple duplicative tests ordered by doctors unaware of what other doctors have ordered. Providers must meet quality standards as well as hitting cost targets so that the level of care does not decline even as doctors practice in a more cost-conscious way. (In many cases, DHS hopes improved quality will reduce costs by avoiding problems that require more care down the road.) “Part of what you’re trying to do is get the unnecessary variation out of there,” Selig says. “You
might see a lot of providers able to do a knee replacement for $10,000 and others up in the $25,000 range.” Selig says that simply providing clearer information about actual costs has been a revelation to some doctors. “We’ve had surgeons say to us, ‘I never knew that that’s what that costs — that test or that implant, I just ordered it. I liked it as well as any other. Nobody told me that that cost 20 percent more.’ ” According to Selig, the program still gives doctors flexibility and will not produce one-sizefits-all medicine. Tracking is done over an entire year, so doctors are being evaluated with a large sample, not on any individual patient. And exceptions and risk adjustments will be applied to certain types of patients that might drive up costs beyond the provider’s control. “You always are going to have docs who, given the individual patient, are going to treat them differently,” he says. “We are not wanting a cookie-cutter approach. We still want every doc to do what’s best for that specific patient. We’re just saying over the course of a year, if your costs are a lot higher than the other guys, or if they’re a lot better, we want to incentivize you on that.” Additional episodes of care will be added to the initiative in the coming years and DHS is hoping to completely move to the new payment system over the next three to five years. “At a minimum, we think we can probably save 2 percent of what we would otherwise have spent,” Selig says. “That turns in to millions of dollars over the next few years and compounds from year to year.” DHS projects that the initiative will save the state Medicaid program, currently facing a budget shortfall, $15 million in fiscal year 2014 and $65 million in 2015. Selig acknowledges that some providers may be nervous about the changes, but says that most are “cautiously optimistic.” “Good physicians will tell you, ‘we work to coordinate the care, and you don’t pay us a dime,’ ” he says. “We’re trying to incentivize what good docs already do.”
VETERANS’ HOMES, CONT. home and dismayed to discover immobile residents in the Fayetteville facility, housed several stories up, with no escape in the event of a fire. The Fayetteville home and the old Little Rock home are multilevel, and neither was designed as a nursing home. Edwards envisions a new, specificuse building, possibly patterned after the Northwest Louisiana War Veterans Home in Bossier City. Louisiana’s 5-year-old, $21 million facility houses 156 veterans and spouses and includes an Alzheimer’s ward and staff physician. Edwards thinks Little Rock can build something similar for about $20 million, and he is prepared to sponsor a second bill seeking a roughly $7 million appropriation for the new home. The Veterans Administration will pay 65 percent of the cost of a new home, if a state comes up with the remaining 35 percent. If Arkansas wants to be eligible for federal funding in 2013, an appropriation bill would have to pass during the upcoming legislative session. English wants to take things more slowly, with the task force presenting recommendations to the legislature in October 2013 and a vote on an appropriation in 2014. Veterans Commissioner Tom Thomas thinks both Edwards and English are on the right track, but he doesn’t expect anything to happen this session. “There are too many high priorities right now,” he said. “You have to look at the greater good. The Medicaid shortfall, surely that will affect a lot of veterans and a lot of other people.” He also believes time is necessary for the state to study its options. “Where these homes work best, it seems that the management is always contracted out [to private companies]. Some other states have relieved the VA of this responsibility and turned it over to the department of health or DHS. We’ve been building and maintaining these homes in the same way since the ’50s and ’60s. Maybe we should look at some other options. It might work better to have several satellite homes instead of one core home. Lots of states provide daycare for veterans who need someplace to go in the day, when their families work,” he said. Cissy Rucker, named by Gov. Mike Beebe as director of the Arkansas Department of Veterans Affairs in May, after the forced resignation of David Fletcher, plans to meet with Edwards next week. “We’re doing a lot of information and fact-gathering, but I’m not ready to come forward with a recommendation as to what I think we need,” she said. “Can we support this sort of home? What about the budget? Is there
really a need? ... We just closed down one [home], and we’ve got some issues that we’re trying to resolve at the other [Fayetteville] one.” Edwards believes that veterans benefit from the company of other veterans. “We have obligations to those who have served, and it’s a smaller and smaller group that’s willing to take on this task for the rest of the nation … the disconnect between the civilian population and those who’ve served is greater than it’s ever been, or at least in my lifetime.” A few decades ago, he said, veterans could have found fellow vets in nearly any nursing home, but now, “it’s more important to have places for vets to be together, because it’s not the common experience it has been in the past.” Changing demographics complicate the situation, Edwards said. “Arkansas has already had a significant increase in the number of female veterans, and typically, females live longer. And because of better medical care on the battlefield, we’re having more and more people survive … who have suffered from things such as traumatic brain injury.” Edwards knows the veterans’ home will be a tough sell to fiscally conservative lawmakers, but he has some tentative support. “Edwards has made a pretty compelling argument that we ought to be doing more here. Some of the details, we don’t have answers, but I’m probably going to support the bill,” said Rep. Davy Carter, speaker of the House. A spokesman said Attorney General Dustin McDaniel has made no firm commitments to the home, but Edwards said McDaniel has indicated to him that he would funnel some money from his Consumer Education and Enforcement Fund to a veterans’ home. (Expenditures from the fund, amassed from legal settlements paid to the state, are nearly entirely at McDaniel’s discretion; he’s been criticized for bypassing the legislature in spending the money.) Governor Beebe isn’t officially supporting any bills yet, although Edwards did meet with Beebe’s chief of staff. “My sense is the governor’s got a lot on his plate, and I think he’s looking to those of us in the General Assembly who care about this issue to present him with a plan. I’m very satisfied with the outcome of the meeting,” Edwards said. But Edwards isn’t depending entirely on government monies. He’s shopping his cause to philanthropic organizations, as well. Under Arkansas law, the VA director can accept designated gifts. Edwards believes better oversight and focus will help guard against further CONTINUED ON PAGE 26 www.arktimes.com
DECEMBER 19, 2012
AFTER THE FALL, CONT. Tom Ezell is a past president of Bicycle Advocacy of Central Arkansas, and had been a friend of McConnell for 10 years. A certified instructor with the League of American Bicyclists, Ezell teaches classes on bicycle safety. He had McConnell in several classes, in fact. On his laptop, Ezell keeps a long list of all the bicyclists who have been killed in traffic accidents in the state over the past decade, so he can better illustrate for his students the dangers of sharing the road with automobiles. In February 2011, Ezell himself was hit from behind and thrown over his handlebars at a red light near Little Rock City Hall by a motorist who fled the scene. Ezell, who said all he can figure is that the Lord reached down, picked him up off his bike, and put him down in the road, walked away with only a twisted knee. It’s a measure of how one bicyclist’s spill can be another’s grave injury. Ironically, Ezell said, it was Diane McConnell who was the first to reach him to render first aid. Ezell points out that Arkansas and Little Rock consistently rank low in lists of bicycle-friendly cities. “CNBC two years ago ranked Little Rock as the fourth most dangerous city in the country to try and ride a bike or walk in,” he said. In this year’s League of American Bicyclists rankings of the most bike-friendly states in the United States, Arkansas came in dead last. Little Rock’s streets are dangerous for bicyclists, Ezell said, because of a combination of factors, including inattentive drivers and speeding. He attributes the excessive speed to the way many streets in the city are designed: wide, unobstructed and open. “We’re used to — I call it — Freeway Driving Mode,” Ezell said. “The road’s clear? Then hammer down and boogie. When we come off 630, or I-30, or I-40 and get on the [surface] streets, we carry that same mode of behavior with us. ... We need to slow things down by narrowing the street [and] putting in some trees. You create the perception in the driver’s mind that he’s being tunneled in, and he’ll pay a little more
attention.” While Ezell sees bike lanes as a great incentive to get people riding, he said they are not an overall solution because they only create the perception of safety, are often intermittent, and usually allow traffic to turn across them. A better solution, he said, is education for both cyclists and drivers, to help them realize the roads belong to everyone. In his classes, Ezell teaches cyclists who are riding on city streets to ride just like they would a motorcycle or drive a car, staying toward the center of the lane, controlling their space, obeying all traffic laws and staying alert. “What we teach people is: Ride in traffic,” he said. “Arkansas State Law says that all vehicles have the same rights and obligation on the road. We start off by teaching people that cyclists are safest when we obey and follow traffic laws. We’re safest when we act and are treated in return like the driver of any other vehicle.” David “Bud” Laumer is an urban planner who is currently teaching courses on planning and sustainable land use at the University of Central Arkansas at Conway. An avid bicyclist who lives in West Little Rock, Laumer has a picture of himself with Diane McConnell taken in front of Little Rock’s famous Villa Marre house during the fall of 2009. Laumer, who has had his own fights with City Hall over the city’s attempts to turn his quiet residential street into a major connector, said the city has spent decades making itself into a place where the only safe mode of transportation is cars. Like Ezell, Laumer said that wide streets with long, unobstructed views — a design he said stems from a planning idea called “Forgiving Highways” — give motorists the idea that it’s safe to speed, even in residential areas. “If people can see for a quarter mile up the street, and the street is 60 feet wide, by golly, they can put that foot down and go as fast as they want. ... Then we blame the motorist,” Laumer said. “We set up traffic stings and we’re nicking motorists and making them pay
tickets. Those streets don’t tell anybody to slow down.” Instead, Laumer advocates a “New Urbanist” approach that would make narrower streets with more greenery near the road, which he said would “give you a clue where you are and what you should be doing by how they’re designed.” Laumer said we need to create a mindset in local government that biking, walking and public transit are equal in stature to motor vehicles, and design our streets with that mindset. Not only will they make things safer, Laumer said, bicycle-friendly streets will help the city retain in the workforce creative, educated young people who would prefer to use their bikes as transportation for environmental reasons. “They’re not putting on Lycra and going down to the River Trail,” Laumer said. “They’re saying: How do I connect the origins and destinations I need to in my daily life without burning a bunch of carbon?” Little Rock Assistant City Manager Bryan Day called bike-car crashes “an incredible tragedy,” and said there are cities around the world where bicycles and cars coexist without bike lanes and signage. “It’s an education process,” he said. “That’s what Little Rock really needs. We need to embrace and understand that cyclists as well as vehicles are viable modes of transportation, and they have the right to share the roads in most cases.” Day said the city is working to make Little Rock safer for those who want to commute. “From a recreational standpoint,” Day said, “Little Rock gets an ‘A.’ We do need to do more for those who choose to commute to work by bike, or those who have to commute to work by bike.” Day said the city is working with BACA and other groups to develop north-south and east-west routes for bicyclists, and recently put in bike lanes on 12th Street from Jonesboro Street to Children’s Hospital. It’s also putting in more public bike racks on Main Street to “subtly promote the concept
that it’s OK to ride your bike here.” Day said the city has also made education about the rights of bicyclists part of the training received by the Little Rock Police Department. After a presentation by local bicycle clubs about “sharrows” — painted markings on the street that depict a bicycle topped by a directional arrow, meant to remind motorists they should share the road — Day said the city has agreed to paint them on a stretch of Kavanaugh Boulevard, including in the area where McConnell was hit. “You get frustrations from both sides,” Day said. “I’ve had people call and say: ‘Why are we doing this for bicyclists, because bicyclists will run stop signs and cut through stop lights?’ Then I’ve had bicyclists say that motorists get too close and honk their horns. There’s this common respect issue that we have to work through as a community.” Tom Ezell said he can’t count how many times a motorist has honked at him before zooming around, endangering both their lives, only to have Ezell catch the car that passed him at the next red light 15 seconds later. To try and help dispel the notion of bicyclists as obstacles, Ezell teaches motorist education classes, in which he instructs on things like proper passing (state law requires a distance of at least three feet between a moving car and a bicyclist while passing) and the perception that “the cyclist is in my way.” While he admits that getting behind a bicyclist in the middle of the traffic lane can be frustrating for a motorist, Ezell asks drivers to ask themselves if getting there a few seconds faster is really worth a person’s life. Sitting in a Main Street coffee shop, looking over the accident report of McConnell’s crash, Ezell shook his head. “It just so happened that at that place, everything came together with carelessness — a careless motorist — to cause that crash,” he said. “They’re not accidents. Accidents involve some sort of act of God, and they’re unavoidable. These crashes are caused by negligence.”
VETERANS HOME, CONT. improprieties. At the Little Rock Veterans Home, 50 residents were nursing home patients, and the other 18 were categorized as domiciliary, meaning they were disabled or economically disadvantaged but did not require 24-hour care. Edwards has talked to Commis26
DECEMBER 19, 2012
sioner Thomas about proposing legislation to require that at least one member of the Veterans Commission have nursing home management experience. “It’s a good idea,” Thomas said, “but since its inception the Veterans Commission has been made up of veterans, and I’m not sure you could find
veterans with this expertise. … If you start bringing other people onto the Veterans Commission, you might as well change the name to the Veterans Advisory Committee. It changes the whole thing.” Currently Arkansas has about 251,000 veterans, and as of 2011, Lou-
isiana had 297,658. Louisiana’s five veterans facilities contain 785 beds, to Arkansas’s 108. “Over the years, Louisiana has worked out some of the kinks, so they’re a good model for us. If they can do this in Louisiana, we can do this in Arkansas,” Edwards said.
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DRIVERS PLEASE BE AWARE, IT’S ARKANSAS STATE LAW: Use of bicycles or animals
Every person riding a bicycle or an animal, or driving any animal drawing a vehicle upon a highway, shall have all the rights and all of the duties applicable to the driver of a vehicle, except those provisions of this act which by their nature can have no applicability.
Overtaking a bicycle
The driver of a motor vehicle overtaking a bicycle proceeding in the same direction on a roadway shall exercise due care and pass to the left at a safe distance of not less than three feet (3’) and shall not again drive to the right side of the roadway until safely clear of the overtaken bicycle.
and cyclists, please remember...
Your bike is a vehicle on the road just like any other vehicle and you must also obey traffic laws— use turning and slowing hand signals, ride on right and yield to traffic as if driving. Be sure to establish eye contact with drivers. Remain visible and predictable at all times.
Respectfully dedicated to the memory of cyclist Dianne McConnell www.arktimes.com
december 19, 2012
Arts Entertainment AND
is for “Antivenin Suite,” Isaac Alexander’s latest solo album. Alexander’s last solo record, “See Thru Me,” was an Arkansas favorite, landing at No. 6 on the Arkansas Times Music Poll’s best Arkansas albums list. In every way, “Antivenin Suite” lived up to the promise of its predecessor, with some of the most rewarding listening of the year. The album is streaming on Alexander’s bandcamp page right now.
Here’s our annual alphabetical appraisal of the year’s cultural standouts. BY ROBERT BELL
is for The Big Cats. The long-running Little Rock band unleashed the second part of a two-album set in December. “The Ancient Art of Leaving” also came out as a 180-gram triple LP on singer/ guitarist Burt Taggart’s Max Recordings. Despite its length, the album never weighs down. It’s the best example yet of the band’s effortless command of driving, melodic power pop.
is for Cody Belew, the singer who hails from Beebe and made it all the way from the 45,000 who auditioned into the top eight on NBC’s “The Voice.” Belew was the final contestant selected in the blind auditions. CeeLo Green chose Belew, and together they created some memorable performances that allowed Belew to show off his amazing vocal acrobatics. His version of Queen’s “Somebody to Love” was fantastic.
is for “Devil’s Knot,” the book about the West Memphis Three case by Times contributor and journalist Mara Leveritt. In February, it was announced that director Atom Egoyan would helm a film adaptation of the book, starring Reese Witherspoon and Colin Firth.
DECEMBER 19, 2012
is for Epiphany, the longtime Little Rock MC who released his long-awaited full-length album “Such is Life.” Times editor Lindsey Millar wrote that if the album “doesn’t push him into the national conversation, there’ll be one explanation: Only the lucky succeed. That’s because for more than a decade the Pine Bluff-raised rapper has made all the right moves.” In addition to the record, Piph and producer Ferocious acted as musical ambassadors, travel-
ing at the behest of the U.S. Embassy to Gambia to teach kids about hip-hop. They later traveled to Mauritius to bring the music to that tiny island nation. Next stop?
is for festivals. This year saw quality acts at the established festivals, such as King Biscuit Blues Festival, Wakarusa and Yonder Mountain Harvest Festival on Mulberry Mountain, Valley of the Vapors and Hot Water Hills in Hot Springs, The Johnny Cash Music Festival in Jonesboro, the growing-by-leapsand-bounds Fayetteville Roots Festival and of course good ol’ Riverfest right here in Capital City. There were also new ones like the Butler Center’s inaugural Arkansas Sounds Music Festival, and a new one to look forward to with the recently announced Thunder on the Mountain country music festival, which will be at Mulberry Mountain June 6-8, 2013, the weekend after Wakarusa.
is for Glen Campbell. The Delight native and musical legend played in his home state several times in 2012, including shows at Robinson Center Music Hall and the Walton Arts Center. It’s the final tour for Campbell, who last year revealed his Alzheimer’s diagnosis. The Robinson show was, by all accounts, fantastic. Times contributor Bill Paddack wrote that it was an emotional concert and that Campbell “looked good, sounded terrific and proved he’s still one heckuva performer by belting out his best-known hits in an 18-song set that lasted almost 70 minutes.”
is for home, which the Little Rock Film Festival will have next year after the completion of The Arcade, the threestory, 51,000-square-foot building under construction at the corner of President Clinton and River Market avenues. The building — a joint project between real estate developers Jimmy Moses and Rett Tucker and the Central Arkansas Library System — will house a restaurant, space for the Clinton School of Public Service and the Arkansas Studies Institute and a 310-seat theater that will offer LRFF programming as well as other events. CONTINUED ON PAGE 34
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LITTLE ROCK’S PEPPERBOY HAS AN EARLY CHRISTMAS present for everybody: a new 15-track album called “Nitetime.” The album finds Pepperboy dishing out some 100-percent truth about the big issues: Life, love and death; drugs; the streets; the game; staying out of trouble. The lead single, “Love My Life,” was produced by Blue Sky Black Death out of Seattle, who also produced Pepperboy’s awesome single “Felon,” from last summer. At the end of the track, he gives thanks to folks in the medical community: “I wanna give a shout out to the University Hospital and St. Vincent Hospital, them doctors in that ER, they saved your boy’s life, shout-out to my sister man, she’s a nurse, been doing that shit like 20 years.” On “Global Warming,” Pepperboy turns his gaze to world events. Check out this line about Malala Yousafzai, the 15-year-old girl attacked in Pakistan by terrorists: “Lord help us with the Taliban, tried to kill that little girl ‘cause she had a plan / Tryin’ to help her people in Afghanistan / They don’t like the women, they want ‘em to serve man.” Check it out at pepper-boy.com.
TO CHARITIES AND NON-PROFIT ORGINIZATIONS LAST YEAR. arktimes.com / 501.375.2985
SOURCE: THE MEDIA AUDIT, JAN. 2012
BRING 2013 NEW YEAR’S
HALF JAPANESE — THE VETERAN EXPERIMENTAL ROCK band that has been a cult favorite among music geeks for 35 years — really dug Hot Springs. The group played a weekend-long residency at Maxine’s back in October, at the behest of Thick Syrup Records, the Little Rock label that has released and reissued several works from the band. Half Japanese played, along with solo sets from founding members David and Jad Fair and performances from kindred spirits Ezra Lbs. and The Bloodless Cooties. There were exhibitions of the Fair brothers’ artwork, and a screening of the documentary “Half Japanese: The Band That Would Be King.” Apparently, so much fun was had that it necessitated a book to commemorate the occasion. And thus, “All the Doctors in Hot Springs,” which is a lyric from Robert Johnson’s “32-20 Blues.” It’s a 48-page book of photos, fliers and more from the weekend, which saw the band performing the song “Lucky Times Lucky Plus Lucky Times Ten” (written just for the occasion) as Thick Syrup founder Travis McElroy proposed to his now-fiancee Samantha Pirtle. As the band wrote in the introduction to the book, “What a great time!” They thanked McElroy and Pirtle and all the other folks involved, including Kevin Rogers and Agnes Galecka, who own Maxine’s, “the coolest music venue west of Hoboken.” You can pick the book up on Amazon.
EVE PARTY MONDAY, DECEMBER 31, 2012 9:00pm-2:00am $50 in advance . $65 day of event Tickets available at the hotel Gift Shop, Front Desk, or Online: www.rivertopparty.com
FEATURING MUSIC FROM: Tragikly White DJ Brandon Peck Rodney Block & The Real Music Lovers Tré Day DJ G-Force
Must be 21 or older . 501.399.8059 Duckmaster Club VIP Room tickets available online only. NYE room packages available by calling: 1.800.PEABODY.
® Three Statehouse Plaza
Little Rock, AR 72201
DECEMBER 19, 2012
BY ROBERT BELL & DAVID KOON
PRESERVATION HALL JAZZ BAND: CREOLE CHRISTMAS
8 p.m. Walton Arts Center. $20-$36.
Here’s a great way to really kick off the holidays: Christmas tunes performed by The Preservation Hall Jazz Band. And hey, depending on what the weather’s doing, it might be warm enough to seem like Christmas in New Orleans. The PHJB was
recently in Arkansas with the Del McCoury Band, and current band leader John Brunious actually stayed for a while in Conway after Hurricane Katrina. There’ll surely be many others, but according to the band’s website, you can expect to hear the band’s jazzy ragtime takes on “Blue Christmas,” “Swinging in a Winter Wonderland,” “Bells will be Ringing” and “The Dreidel Song.” RB
SNEAK PEEK: The AETN Foundation hosts a “Downton Abbey” reception Wednesday at Argenta Community Theater.
‘DOWNTON ABBEY’ RECEPTION 6 p.m. Argenta Community Theater. $25-$30.
First, an admission: I know now that everybody jokingly calls it this, but at first I really for reals thought the show was called “Downtown Abbey,” kind of absentmindedly thinking (or maybe hoping) that it was about an urban monastery filled with crimefighting monks who also brew delicious, fancy beer, which they would drink at the end of each episode to celebrate another crime successfully solved. I was badly way off, though, which is a shame because that seems like a pretty solid premise for a one-hour primetime hit. Soon enough I realized that it was not a show about monks, but in reality a very British period drama about a rich family and their big huge house and their problems with the help.
There was lots of gossipy whispering and something about a dowager countess who’s looking for a fiancee? That’s not quite right, but close. I might give it a chance, but it just seems so extremely British, and not in a charmingly whimsical way, like “The Kinks are the Village Green Preservation Society.” More like in a hard-to-understand way, you know, like Guy Ritchie characters, or calling every bowl of lumpy mystery food a “pudding.” But hey, I’m probably just a philistine. After all, the show is hugely popular. My wife loves “Downton Abbey” and lots of her friends do too. They’re all champing at the bit for new episodes, so this reception, presented by the AETN Foundation, seems like surefire good times, what with its sneak-preview screening of the first episode of Season 3 and its cocktails and period costume contest. RB
CREOLE CHRISTMAS: The Preservation Hall Jazz Band plays a Christmas concert Thursday at Walton Arts Center.
high school, there is a refuge for those possibly-less-athletic souls for whom the muse calls. That place is called band. Your roving reporter, stuck at a tiny high school with no football team to exploit my soda-machine-like 6’5” 300-pound frame, did several years in band, playing the trombone. Those memories of concerts and basketball
game trips on the bus are still some of the best of my teen-age years. Now in its 12th year, Hornucopia — a concert in collaboration with Play It Again Arkansas, which donates used instruments to schools all over the state — has been collecting money and dust-gathering instruments to help make those memories happen for kids who might
7:30 p.m. Stickyz. $20 or a good used band instrument.
While the jocks and cheerleaders are always going to be the undisputed Lords and Ladies of the brief, hormonesoaked, “Beyond Thunderdome” kingdom that is your average American 30
DECEMBER 19, 2012
otherwise be left out. This year’s Hornucopia lineup looks to be a good one, featuring Kavanaugh, Flying Balloon-o Brothers, The WTF Band, The Rockets and YT&T. Get digging in those closets for your old horns, clarinets, flutes, drums and cymbals, folks. There’s a fun night to be had, and for a good cause to boot. DK
The Clinton School of Public Service hosts Saudi Arabian artist Manal Al Dowayan, who will discuss her exhibit “I Am: Arab Women in Islamic Society,” 6 p.m., free. Juanita’s has all of your metalcore needs covered, with North Carolina’s A Hero A Fake, and openers Myka, Relocate, Outline in Color, Derivative, 3-D Arcade and Vespers, 9 p.m., $8.
LUCERO, JIMBO MATHUS & THE TRI-STATE COALITION
9 p.m. Revolution. $21 adv., $26 day of.
As has been pointed out by many highly credible sources, Friday is the end of the world because a long time ago some Mayan dudes said it was and carved it into a stone. For fans of rowdy rock ’n’ roll living in or reasonably close to Central Arkansas, here is a great way to spend the last night of existence. Memphis rockers Lucero have, perhaps unsurprisingly, continued their path as absolute road-warrior maniacs, playing approximately 1,286 shows this year (this is only a slight exaggeration). The band’s album “Women & Work” was released back in March on ATO Records (also home to such notables as Drive-By Truckers and My Morning Jacket). Frontman Ben Nichols told Rolling Stone that the band is “in the best spot organizationally that we’ve
Downtown Music Hall has another installment of its Indie Music Night Hip-Hop Showcase, 9 p.m., $10. Ed Bowman & The Rock City Players bring the rock ’n’ soul to The Joint, 9 p.m., $7. Mayday By Midnight plays the headliner spot at Cajun’s Wharf, with singer/songwriter Audrey Dean Kelly playing happy hour, 5 and 9 p.m., $5 after 8:30 p.m. ROCKIN’ THE HOLIDAYS: Lucero plays at Revolution Friday night.
ever been. We’ve never had any delusions about being big-time rock stars. But like my dad says, ‘Just get a few more people through the door, sell a few more records.’ ” Jimbo Mathus and his crew, the Tri-State Coalition, have a new album called “White Buffalo” coming out Jan. 22 on Fat Possum Records. I had the privilege of giving it a
LR HORROR PICTURE SHOW END OF THE WORLD PARTY
8 p.m. Lulav. $30.
As previously noted, the end of the world is scheduled for Dec. 21. While I tend to think it’s just the day that whoever came up with the Mayan calendar finally threw down his pen and said, “Ah, screw it. Surely the world won’t last that long!” it’s got the tinfoil-hat brigades all in a tizzy. Then again, you never know. Luckily for us, no matter how it all turns out, the Mayans were smart enough to schedule the end of the world for a Friday night, which makes it a great excuse to party. One of the hottest tickets in town for the Big Adios is sure to be the Little Rock
listen, and man, it’s a good’n. Bet they’ll be playing some new tunes, hopefully including the eerie “Run Devil Run” (which recalls Mathus’ swampy guitar work on the fantastic Buddy Guy album “Sweet Tea”) and the glorious “(I Wanna Be Your) Satellite,” which makes me think of Jim Mize covering The Replacements. RB
SATURDAY 12/22 Film Festival’s End of the World Party at Lulav. The $30 entry fee — which goes to benefit the LRFF’s second-annual Little Rock Horror Picture Show — entitles you to all the food and drink you can stuff into your gibbering, tear-streaked face before you’re vaporized, with musical accompaniment by The Funkanites. Also on hand will be fun stuff like Apocalypse-themed drink specials, a photo booth, and a confessional where you can unburden your soul before you wobble un-gently into that Good Night. Please note: The LRFF will offer no refunds if the world doesn’t, in fact, disappear up its own ass at midnight, so don’t overdraw your checking account to buy those tickets, kids. DK
10 p.m. White Water Tavern.
How do you follow up a year like 2011, when you played a ton of shows and were featured in all kinds of national publications and got interviewed on MSNBC about your opera you wrote about Bill Clinton? Well, if you’re Bonnie Montgomery, you go and have an even bigger year, releasing a fantastic EP and going on tour in the U.S. and across Europe opening for Gossip at all kinds of big-time venues. In addition to Montgomery’s full-band honky-tonkin’ set, Oklahoma singer/ songwriter Jesse Aycock will open the show with Greg Spradlin and Jason Weinheimer backing him up. Also, Gossip guit-slinger Nathan Howdeshell will be playing records before the show. RB
The Downtown Tip Off Club hosts Razorback men’s basketball coach Mike Anderson, Wyndham Riverfront Hotel, 11:15 a.m., $15-$20. So it’s the last day of existence as we know it. Why not celebrate the end of everything with the bluesy, shred-tastic jams of the incredible Fuggins Wheat Band? They play an End of the World Throwdown at Midtown Billiards, 12:30 a.m., $5. And hey, just in case the Mayans were off, the band also plays Midtown Saturday, same time and cover. Local pop-punkers Wreckless Endeavor play Vino’s with hip-hop outfit Flint Eastwood and indie rock trio The Dangerous Idiots, 9 p.m., $5. Up in Benton County, Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art hosts the Artinfusion event “The End of the World,” 7 p.m., free for members, $15 for nonmembers. The fantastic jazz and soul singer Genine Perez just released a new CD this week, and she’ll perform with Lagniappe at The Afterthought, 9 p.m., $7. Blues wailer Wes Jeans is at Denton’s Trotline, 9 p.m., $10.
If you survived the end of the world and you need some quirky musical whimsy, Duke of Uke & His Novelty Orchestra plays Maxine’s, with the duo Loves It!, 8 p.m., $5 adv., $7 door. The Arkansas Razorbacks men’s basketball team takes on the Alabama A&M Bulldogs, Verizon Arena, 7 p.m., $25. Arkansas country up-and-comers Matt Stell & Deep Roots play an 18-and-older show at Revolution, 9 p.m., $8.
TYRANNOSAURUS CHICKEN Midnight. Midtown. $5.
I don’t know about what your true love gave to you on all those other days of Christmas, but this year, on the first day of Christmas (which is actually
Dec. 25), Tyrannosaurus Chicken will give you a concert at Midtown. That’s right, Rachel Ammons and Smilin’ Bob Lewis are giving the gift of not only a righteous set of trance-inducing psychedelic blues, but also the rare excuse to get out of the house and,
if this is a consideration for you, get a break from all that family time on Christmas Day. Well, technically it’s very early on Dec. 26, but let’s not get all nitpicky about it. Christmas. Midnight. Midtown. $5. Has a nice ring to it, huh? RB
If you ever wanted to see more local bands than you can shake a microphone at, Juanita’s can help you out, with Linwood’s Localpalooza, featuring Queen Anne’s Revenge, Mourning View, The Stephen Neeper Band, Jason Greenlaw & The Groove, Honky Rebel, The Supporting Cast, Severe Headwound, 5 Point Cove, Kid D, Flint Eastwood and Found & Fearless, 5 p.m., $5.
DECEMBER 19, 2012
AFTER DARK All events are in the Greater Little Rock area unless otherwise noted. To place an event in the Arkansas Times calendar, please e-mail the listing and all pertinent information, including date, time, location, price and contact information, to email@example.com.
WEDNESDAY, DEC. 19
Acoustic Open Mic. The Afterthought, 8 p.m., free. 2721 Kavanaugh Blvd. 501-663-1196. www. afterthoughtbar.com. Brian & Nick. 5 p.m. and 9 p.m. Cajun’s Wharf, Continues through Dec. 26, $5 after 8:30 p.m. 2400 Cantrell Road. 501-375-5351. www.cajunswharf.com. A Hero A Fake, Myka, Relocate, Outline in Color, Derivative, 3-D Arcade, Vespers. Juanita’s, 9 p.m., $8. 614 President Clinton Ave. 501-372-1228. www.juanitas.com. Jim Dickerson. Sonny Williams’ Steak Room, through Dec. 20, 7 p.m. 500 President Clinton Ave. 501-324-2999. www.sonnywilliamssteakroom.com. Junior Hill & The Settlement (album release). Denton’s Trotline, 8 p.m. 2150 Congo Road, Benton. 501-315-1717. Karaoke at Khalil’s. Khalil’s Pub, 7 p.m. 110 S. Shackleford Road. 501-224-0224. www.khalilspub.com. Little Zero. 18-and-older. Stickyz Rock ‘n’ Roll Chicken Shack, 9 p.m., $2. 107 Commerce St. 501-372-7707. www.stickyz.com. Live Karaoke and Dueling Piano. Featuring Dell Smith and William Staggers. Montego Cafe, 9 p.m. 315 Main St. 501-372-1555. www. montegocafe.com. Michael Carenbauer and Bill Huntington. RJ Tao Restaurant & Ultra Lounge, 7 p.m.; Dec. 26, 7 p.m. 5501 Kavanaugh Blvd. 501-603-0080. www.rjtaorocks.com. Rodge Arnold. The Tavern Sports Grill, 7 p.m., free. 17815 Chenal Parkway. 501-830-2100. www. thetavernsportsgrill.com. Rwake, Sound of the Mountain, Peckerwolf. White Water Tavern, 9:30 p.m. 2500 W 7th St. 501-375-8400. www.whitewatertavern.com. Ted Ludwig Trio. Capital Bar and Grill, 5 p.m., free. 111 Markham St. 501-374-7474. www.capitalhotel.com/CBG.
The Chinaman, Ben Malone. The Loony Bin, 7:30 p.m.; Dec. 21, 7:30 and 10 p.m., $7-$10. 10301 N. Rodney Parham Road. 501-228-5555. www.loonybincomedy.com. The Joint Venture. Improv comedy group. The Joint, 8 p.m., $5. 301 Main St. No. 102, NLR. 501-372-0205. thejointinlittlerock.com. Standup Open Mic Night. Hosted by local comedians of the comedy collective Comedi ans of NWA. UARK Bowl, 9 p.m., free. 644 W. Dickson St., Fayetteville. 479-301-2030. uarkbowl.com.
NOSTALGIA TRIP: Under the Streetlamp, a vocal quartet made up of actors from “Jersey Boys,” hits the stage at Robinson Center Music Hall, performing hits from the “American Radio Songbook of the ’50s, ’60s and ’70s,” 8 p.m. Friday, $64. The group has a new holiday album out now, so some Christmas classics might be in the mix as well. Argenta Community Theater, 6 p.m., $25-$30. 405 Main St., NLR. 501-353-1443. argentacommunitytheater.org. “Lights in the Landscape.” Holiday lighting display. Closed Christmas Day. Garvan Woodland Gardens, through Dec. 31, 5 p.m., $5-$10. 550 Akridge Road, Hot Springs. 501-262-9300. www. garvangardens.org. Manal Al Dowayan. Presentation from one of Saudi Arabia’s foremost artists. Clinton School of Public Service, 6 p.m., free. 1200 President Clinton Ave. 501-683-5239. www.clintonschool. uasys.edu. River Market ice skating. Go to www.holidaysinlittlerock.com for rink times. River Market Pavilions, Continues through Jan. 6, $9. 400 President Clinton Ave. 375-2552. holidaysinlittlerock.com.
Muna AbuSulayman. The director of Directions Consultancy will discuss innovative philanthropy. Clinton School of Public Service, 12 p.m., free. 1200 President Clinton Ave. 501-683-5239. www. clintonschool.uasys.edu.
Wednesday Night Poetry. 21-and-older show. Maxine’s, 7 p.m., free. 700 Central Ave., Hot Springs. 501-321-0909. maxineslive.com/shows. html.
Artist Professional Development. Artchurch Studio, $5 donation. 301 Whittington Ave., Hot Springs. 501-318-6779. www.artchurch.org.
THURSDAY, DEC. 20
Adam Faucett & The Tall Grass Buffalo. White Water Tavern, 10 p.m. 2500 W 7th St. 501-3758400. www.whitewatertavern.com. Ed Bowman & The Rock City Players. The Joint, 9 p.m., $7. 301 Main St. No. 102, NLR. 501-3720205. thejointinlittlerock.com. Hornucopia 2012. Concert with Kavanaugh, Flying Balloono Brothers, WTF, The Rockets and YT&T, to benefit Play it Again, Arkansas. Stickyz Rock ‘n’ Roll Chicken Shack, 7:30 p.m., $20 or donation of a band instrument. 107 Commerce
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DECEMBER 19, 2012
The Chinaman, Ben Malone. The Loony Bin, through Dec. 20, 7:30 p.m.; through Dec. 22, 7:30 and 10 p.m., $7-$10. 10301 N. Rodney Parham Road. 501-228-5555. www.loonybincomedy.com.
Little Rock Bop Club. Beginning dance lessons for ages 10 and older. Singles welcome. Bess Chisum Stephens Community Center, 7 p.m., $4 for members, $7 for guests. 12th & Cleveland streets. 501-350-4712. www.littlerockbopclub.
St. 501-372-7707. www.stickyz.com. Indie Music Night Hip-Hop Showcase. Downtown Music Hall, 9 p.m., $10. 211 W. Capitol. 501-376-1819. downtownmusichall. com. “Inferno.” DJs play pop, electro, house and more, plus drink specials and $1 cover before 11 p.m. Sway, 9 p.m. 412 Louisiana. 501-907-2582. Jim Dickerson. Sonny Williams’ Steak Room, 7 p.m. 500 President Clinton Ave. 501-324-2999. www.sonnywilliamssteakroom.com. Joe Mansur. Hibernia Irish Tavern, 8 p.m. 9700 N. Rodney Parham Road. 501-246-4340. www. hiberniairishtavern.com. Karaoke. Zack’s Place, 8 p.m. 1400 S. University Ave. 501-664-6444. Karaoke night. Cornerstone Pub & Grill, through Dec. 27: 8 p.m. 314 Main St., NLR. 501-374-1782. cstonepub.com. Karaoke with Kevin & Cara. MacDaddy’s Bar and Grill, 9 p.m., free. 314 N. Maple St., NLR. Karaoke with Larry the Table Guy. The Afterthought, 8 p.m., free. 2721 Kavanaugh Blvd. 501-663-1196. www.afterthoughtbar.com. Krush Thursdays with DJ Kavaleer. Club Climax, free before 11 p.m. 824 W. Capitol. 501-554-3437. Mayday By Midnight (headliner), Audrey Dean Kelly (happy hour). Cajun’s Wharf, 5 and 9 p.m., $5 after 8:30 p.m. 2400 Cantrell Road. 501-3755351. www.cajunswharf.com. The Nelson Family. Faulkner County Library, 7 p.m., free. 1900 Tyler St., Conway. 501-3277482. www.fcl.org. New Music Test. All-ages. Revolution, 9 p.m. 300 President Clinton Ave. 501-823-0090. revroom.com. Open jam with The Port Arthur Band. Parrot Beach Cafe, 9 p.m. 9611 MacArthur Drive, NLR. 771-2994. Preservation Hall Jazz Band: Creole Christmas. Walton Arts Center, 8 p.m., $20-$36. 495 W. Dickson St., Fayetteville. 479-443-5600. Rusty White. Thirst n’ Howl, 8:30 p.m., free. 14710 Cantrell Road. 501-379-8189. www.thirstn-howl.com. Ted Ludwig Trio. Capital Bar and Grill, 5 p.m., free. 111 Markham St. 501-374-7474. www.capitalhotel.com/CBG.
Antique/Boutique Walk. Shopping and live entertainment. Downtown Hot Springs, third Thursday of every month, 4-8 p.m., free. 100 Central Ave., Hot Springs. Gallery Talk: “Spreading the Light.” Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, 1:45 p.m., free. 600 Museum Way, Bentonville. 479-4185700. crystalbridges.org. “Lights in the Landscape.” Holiday lighting display. Closed Christmas Day. Garvan Woodland Gardens, through Dec. 31, 5-9 p.m., $5-$10. 550 Akridge Road, Hot Springs. 501-262-9300. www. garvangardens.org. River Market ice skating. Go to www.holidaysinlittlerock.com for rink times. River Market Pavilions, Continues through Jan. 6, $9. 400 President Clinton Ave. 375-2552. holidaysinlittlerock.com.
Artinfusion Event: “The End of the World.” Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, 7 p.m., free for members, $15 for nonmembers. 600 Museum Way, Bentonville. 479-418-5700. crystalbridges.org. Born of Osiris, A Darkend Era. Downtown Music Hall, 7 p.m., $10 adv., $12 day of. 211 W. Capitol. 501-376-1819. downtownmusichall.com. Club Nights at 1620 Savoy. Dance night, with DJs, drink specials and bar menu, until 2 a.m. 1620 Savoy, 10 p.m. 1620 Market St. 501-2211620. www.1620savoy.com. Crisis (headliner), Richie Johnson (happy hour). Cajun’s Wharf, 5 and 9 p.m., $5 after 8:30 p.m. 2400 Cantrell Road. 501-375-5351. www.cajunswharf.com. Danny Green. The Tavern Sports Grill, 8:30 p.m., free. 17815 Chenal Parkway. 501-830-2100. www. thetavernsportsgrill.com. End of the World Throwdown with The Fuggins Wheat Band. Midtown Billiards, Dec. 21-22, 12:30 a.m., $5. 1316 Main St. 501-3729990. midtownar.com. Friday night at Sway. Sway, 9 p.m. 412 Louisiana. 501-907-2582. Genine Perez with Lagniappe. The Afterthought, 9 p.m., $7. 2721 Kavanaugh Blvd. 501-663-1196. www.afterthoughtbar.com. Grim Musik. Cornerstone Pub & Grill, 8:30 p.m. 314 Main St., NLR. 501-374-1782. cstonepub. com. Jeff Coleman. Sonny Williams’ Steak Room, Dec. 21, 7 p.m.; Dec. 22, 7 p.m. 500 President Clinton Ave. 501-324-2999. www.sonnywilliamssteakroom.com. Jim Stewart. Cregeen’s Irish Pub, 8 p.m. 301 Main St., NLR. 501-376-7468. www.cregeens. com. Johnny Witchcraft 2012 End of the World Rock ‘n’ Roll Show. White Water Tavern, 9 p.m. 2500 W 7th St. 501-375-8400. www.whitewatertavern.com. Lucero, Jimbo Mathus & The Tri-State Coalition. Revolution, 9 p.m., $21 adv., $26 day of. 300 President Clinton Ave. 501-8230090. revroom.com. Seth Freeman. West End Smokehouse and Tavern, 10 p.m., $5. 215 N. Shackleford. 501224-7665. www.westendsmokehouse.net. Smokey Emerson. Flying Saucer, 9 p.m., $3. 323 President Clinton Ave. 501-372-8032. www. beerknurd.com/stores/littlerock. Synergy, DJ Sleepy Genius. Montego Cafe, 8:30 p.m. 315 Main St. 501-372-1555. www. montegocafe.com. Ted Ludwig Trio. Capital Bar and Grill, 9 p.m., free. 111 Markham St. 501-374-7474. www. capitalhotel.com/CBG. Thread. Thirst n’ Howl, 9 p.m., free. 14710 Cantrell Road. 501-379-8189. www.thirst-n-howl.com. Under the Streetlamp. Robinson Center Music Hall, 8 p.m., $64. Markham and Broadway. www. littlerockmeetings.com/conv-centers/robinson. Wes Jeans. Denton’s Trotline, 9 p.m., $10. 2150 Congo Road, Benton. 501-315-1717.
The Chinaman, Ben Malone. The Loony Bin, through Dec. 22, 7:30 and 10 p.m., $7-$10. 10301 N. Rodney Parham Road. 501-228-5555. www.loonybincomedy.com. The Main Thing. Two-act original comedy play “A Fertle Holiday.” The Joint, 8 p.m., $20. 301 Main St. No. 102, NLR. 501-372-0205. thejointinlittlerock.com.
Little Rock Salsa Night. Juanita’s, 10 p.m., $5. 614 President Clinton Ave. 501-372-1228. www. juanitas.com. Moscow Classical Ballet: “The Nutcracker.” Walton Arts Center, Dec. 21, 7 p.m.; Dec. 22, 2 and 7 p.m.; Dec. 23, 2 p.m., $32-$46. 495 W. Dickson St., Fayetteville. 479-443-5600.
The Dan Ellis Jazz Funeral. Check website for more details. The Rowdy Beaver Restaurant & Tavern, 4 p.m. 417 W. Van Buren, Eureka Springs. 479-253-8544. www.jazzfuneral.danellis.net/. Foul Play Cabaret End of the World XXX-Mas Show. Maxine’s, 8 p.m., $10 adv., $12 door. 700 Central Ave., Hot Springs. www.maxinespub.com. LGBTQ/SGL Youth and Young Adult Group. Diverse Youth for Social Change is a group for LGBTQ/SGL and straight ally youth and young adults age 14 to 23. For more information, call 244-9690 or search “DYSC” on Facebook. 800 Scott St., 6:30 p.m. 800 Scott St. “Lights in the Landscape.” Holiday lighting display. Closed Christmas Day. Garvan Woodland Gardens, through Dec. 31, 5-9 p.m., $5-$10. 550 Akridge Road, Hot Springs. 501-262-9300. www. garvangardens.org. Little Rock Horror Picture Show’s End of the World Party. Fundraiser party for the Little Rock Horror Picture Show. Lulav, 8 p.m., $32. 220 A W. 6th St. 501-374-5100. www.lulaveatery.com. River Market ice skating. Go to www.holidaysinlittlerock.com for rink times. River Market Pavilions, Continues through Jan. 6, $9. 400 President Clinton Ave. 375-2552. holidaysinlittlerock.com.
Downtown Tip Off Club: Mike Anderson. Wyndham Riverfront Hotel, 11:15 a.m., $15$20. 2 Riverfront Place, NLR. 501-371-9000. www.wyndham.com.
Toy making for ages 6-9. Students will spend two days making toys and games and will tour the “Toys Designed by Artists” exhibition. Register at www.arkarts.com/art_classes. Arkansas Arts Center, Dec. 21-22, 9 a.m.-4 p.m., $84 members, $105 non-members. 501 E. 9th St. 501-372-4000. www.arkarts.com.
SATURDAY, DEC. 22
101.1 Old School. Cornerstone Pub & Grill, 9
Trim: 2.125x5.875 Bleed: None Live: 1.875x5.625
FRIDAY, DEC. 21
p.m. 314 Main St., NLR. 501-374-1782. cstonepub.com. Big Stack. West End Smokehouse and Tavern, 10 p.m., $5. 215 N. Shackleford. 501-224-7665. www.westendsmokehouse.net. Bonnie Montgomery. Nathan Howdeshell will play records before Montgomery’s performance. White Water Tavern, 10 p.m. 2500 W 7th St. 501-375-8400. www.whitewatertavern.com. Chris Henry. Flying Saucer, 9 p.m., $3. 323 President Clinton Ave. 501-372-8032. www. beerknurd.com/stores/littlerock. Class of ‘87 Band (headliner), Brian Ramsey (happy hour). Cajun’s Wharf, 5 and 9 p.m., $5 after 8:30 p.m. 2400 Cantrell Road. 501-3755351. www.cajunswharf.com. Club Nights at 1620 Savoy. See Dec. 21. Crisis. Denton’s Trotline, 9 p.m., $7. 2150 Congo Road, Benton. 501-315-1717. Duke of Uke & His Novelty Orchestra, Loves It!. Maxine’s, 8 p.m., $5 adv., $7 door. 700 Central Ave., Hot Springs. www.maxinespub.com. End of the World Throwdown with The Fuggins Wheat Band. Midtown Billiards, 12:30 a.m., $5. 1316 Main St. 501-372-9990. midtownar.com. The Hi-Balls. Thirst n’ Howl, 9 p.m., free. 14710 Cantrell Road. 501-379-8189. www.thirst-nhowl.com. Jeff Coleman. Sonny Williams’ Steak Room, 7 p.m. 500 President Clinton Ave. 501-324-2999. www.sonnywilliamssteakroom.com. Karaoke at Khalil’s. Khalil’s Pub, 7 p.m. 110 S. Shackleford Road. 501-224-0224. www.khalilspub.com. Karaoke. Casa Mexicana, 7 p.m. 6929 JFK Blvd., NLR. 501-835-7876. Karaoke with Kevin & Cara. All-ages, on the restaurant side. Revolution, 9 p.m.-12:45 a.m., free. 300 President Clinton Ave. 501-823-0090. revroom.com. K.I.S.S. Saturdays. Featuring DJ Silky Slim. Dress code enforced. Sway, 10 p.m. 412 Louisiana. 501-492-9802. Lawler, Wolf-e-Wolf, Platinumber, Brandon Peck. Wear all white and get in for half price. Dominique Sanchez and The Discovery Dolls will perform. Discovery Nightclub, 9 p.m. 1021 Jessie Road. 501-664-4784. www.latenightdisco.com. Matt Stell & Deep Roots. 18-and-older. Revolution, 9 p.m., $8. 300 President Clinton Ave. 501-823-0090. revroom.com. Matthew Dickson, Chris Parker and Ted Seibs. 1620 Savoy, through Dec. 29: 10 p.m., free. 1620 Market St. 501-221-1620. www.1620savoy.com. Morning View. Cregeen’s Irish Pub, 8 p.m., $5. 301 Main St., NLR. 501-376-7468. www. cregeens.com. Pickin’ Porch. Bring your instrument. All ages welcome. Faulkner County Library, 9:30 a.m. 1900 Tyler St., Conway. 501-327-7482. www. fcl.org. The RVS Band. The Afterthought, 9 p.m., $7. 2721 Kavanaugh Blvd. 501-663-1196. www. afterthoughtbar.com. Sightseeing with Santa Cruise. Arkansas Queen, 1:30 p.m. 100 Riverfront Park Drive, NLR. 501-372-5777. www.arkansasqueen.com. Singer/Songwriters Showcase. Parrot Beach Cafe, 2-7 p.m., free. 9611 MacArthur Drive, NLR. 771-2994. Swoon, Evacuate the City, Thread. Juanita’s, 10 p.m., $8 adv., $10 day of. 614 President Clinton Ave. 501-372-1228. www.juanitas.com. CONTINUED ON PAGE 38
Closing Date: 12.18.12 QC:sm Pub: Arkansas Times
POETluck. Literary salon and potluck. The Writer’s Colony at Dairy Hollow, third Thursday of every month, 6-9 p.m. 515 Spring St., Eureka Springs. 479-253-7444.
Wreckless Endevour, Flint Eastwood, The Dangerous Idiots. Vino’s, 9 p.m., $5. 923 W. 7th St. 501-375-8466. www.vinosbrewpub.com. “YOLO.” Featuring four DJs and beach volleyball, 18-and-older. Flying DD, $5. 4601 S. University. 501-773-9990. flyingdd.com.
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DECEMBER 19, 2012
A TO Z, CONT.
is for The Iron Man, a.k.a. Michael Burks, the electric blues guitarist who lived in Camden and had an international following. Burks, 54, had just returned stateside after some European dates when he collapsed at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport of an apparent heart attack. Blues fans were understandably devastated at the sudden loss of one of the genre’s best performers. In August, Alligator Records released Burks’ final album, “Show of Strength.”
is for The Joint, the new comedy venue/live music club/coffee house that opened in Argenta in May. The folks who opened and operate the club are also the in-house comedy team “The Main Thing.” Vicki and Steve Farrell and Bret Ihler produce and perform original two-act comedy plays that run twice a week. So far, they’ve performed “Little Rock and a Hard Place,” which skewered local politics; “Electile Dysfunction,” ditto but on a national scale; and “A Fertle Christmas,” a holiday satire about the small-town Fertle Family and their attempts to impress their big-city kinfolk. Along with the comedy, The Joint also hosts live music of pretty much every genre and beer and wine tastings. It’s a welcome new offering in the Central Arkansas club scene.
is for Kevin Kerby, who released the understated “Apostles’ Tongues” this year. It’s a family album, with Kerby’s son Gus contributing on the fiddle, and it’s a much quieter record than some of his previous work. The songs tackle Kerby’s sobriety, faith and other issues that fall more on the somber end of the spectrum. That’s not to say it’s a downer. Despite ruminations such as “I Should Have Gone to the Funeral,” Kerby’s wit, wordplay and sharp sense of humor shine through.
is for Levon Helm, native of Turkey Scratch, drummer and heart and soul of The Band and one of the finest musicians Arkansas ever produced. Helm passed away April 19 of cancer. The Times spoke with several musicians who’d known and played with Helm over the years, including Ronnie Hawkins and Earl Cate, who said Helm “was a one-of-a-kind person and just an unbelievable musician. His feel at the drums was something. I’ve never experienced anything quite like it.”
DECEMBER 19, 2012
is for “Mud,” Little Rock native Jeff Nichols’ third feature-length film. The film, starring Matthew McConaughey and Reese Witherspoon, with Nichols muse Michael Shannon in a minor role, wrapped principal shooting in Southeast Arkansas in fall of 2011. The film debuted at Cannes, with Los Angeles Times blogger Steven Zeitchik calling it “perhaps the most accessible and unabashedly crowd-pleasing movie to play among the roughly dozen English-language films here.” It’s set for a wider U.S. release sometime next year.
is for “Nitetime,” the latest from Little Rock rapper Pepperboy, who we featured back in September. He was recently praised by The Fader and Spin and was given a mixtape shout-out by Lil B. He dropped the album on Dec. 12 — 12-1212, a day he commemorated as “Pepperboy Day.” I noted on Rock Candy that “Nitetime finds Pepperboy dishing out some 100 percent truth about the big issues: Life, love and death; drugs; the streets; the game; staying out of trouble.”
is for Oxford American, which had a … well, let’s just say the storied “Southern Magazine of Good Writing” had an unusual year, in which the board of directors fired founding editor Marc Smirnoff and managing editor Carol Ann Fitzgerald over allegations of sexual harassment and other misbehavior. It all got pretty weird. There was some foot photography and (alleged) attempted literal hand-holding of interns and so forth on the part of Smirnoff. Smirnoff started a website to tell “our story of losing the Oxford American,” which involves taking a lot of 47,000-word potshots at Warwick Sabin and various others affiliated with the magazine. Anyway, the OA hired former Harper’s editor Roger D. Hodge to take over. He’s from Texas and lives in New York City.
is for Parrotheads, who swarmed North Little Rock in March. Their inspiration and undisputed leader, Jimmy Buffet, sold out Verizon Arena in less than an hour and a half. The booze-fueled, epic tailgating more than lived up to our expectations.
is for Queer Prom. In a relatively short span of time, Little Rock’s Queer Prom has grown into a bona fide annual tradition, offering a big night out to LGBT folks and straights alike, with danc-
A TO Z, CONT. ing, music and all the good times that eluded many of us misfits the first time around, back in the bad old days of high school. Times contributor Blair Tidwell went to the 2012 “Roaring ’20s” shindig, and wrote that “the real difference from the quintessential teen-age experience was being in a room full of people completely comfortable with themselves. An assortment of characters filled the dance floor, many dressed as flappers in fringe and sequins or in suspenders for the party’s prohibition-era theme. Some donned experimental drag — girls with drawn-on handlebar mustaches and boys test-driving skirts and tights — some in professional drag, with exquisite wigs and fluttering false eyelashes. Others went for personal preference, a unicorn here, an ’80s prom queen there, plus a ’40s pin-up gal or two.”
is for Reel Civil Rights Film Festival. The festival was founded in 2004 by Spirit Trickey, a playwright and activist whose mother, Minnijean Brown Trickey, is one of the Little Rock Nine. This year, it joined with the Little Rock Film Festival and the Little Rock Central High School National Historic Site to pay tribute to the 55th anniversary of the Central High desegregation crisis and honor the Little Rock Nine. The festival brought in an impressive array of programming and special guests, including Olympic Gold Medalist Tommie Smith, motivational speaker Kevin Powell and musical icon Harry Belafonte.
is for “Sorrow & Extinction,” Pallbearer’s incredible debut album. Bonus extra “S” for this listing: Songwriting. Songwriting! Pallbearer is as heavy and doom-y as they come, with downtuned riffage and funereal fuzz galore, but the band also writes moving, memorable tunes that have an emotional core that resonates even after the song is over. That’s
one reason why this album stands way, way out ahead of the pack, landing it on many best albums of the year lists, including NPR Music, Spin, Decibel (No. 5!) and no doubt several more to be released over the next few days as 2012 winds down. The band is streaming the album on its bandcamp page for free. Go listen now. So, so good.
is for Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers, who sold out Verizon Arena in April for a fantastic, two-hour concert, his first in the state. I’m not gonna lie: It was awesome. Petty and Co. played pretty much every song you’d wanna hear from their incredibly rich back catalog. Standouts included “Free Falling,” the utter classic “American Girl” and a raucous, ripping version of “Runnin’ Down a Dream.” The crowd inside the arena was deafening and Petty promised that he would return. Let’s hope he keeps his word.
is for Unexpected, which is exactly what comedian Dave Chappelle’s show at Robinson was. He wasn’t on tour; aside from a show the night before in Memphis. By now, Chappelle’s disappearing act is nearly as big a part of his story as anything else, but no matter what else he does from here on out, his Comedy Central show cemented his legendary status and remains enormously popular even though the last new “episode” was aired six years ago. Times editor Lindsey Millar reviewed the show, which he found meandering and funny, but overall very loose, with Chappelle leaving plenty of long gaps that the crowd filled by, among other things, calling the Hogs. Fair to say the Hog Call was a new one on Chappelle. “Ladies and gentleman, I’ve done a million shows in my life,” he said. “I’ve never heard a crowd make that noise before.”
CONTINUED ON PAGE 38
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DECEMBER 19, 2012
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‘JACK REACHER’: Starring Tom Cruise. This is taken from the film’s official capsule description: “Six shots. Five dead. One heartland city thrown into a state of terror. But within hours the cops have it solved: a slam-dunk case. Except for one thing. The accused man says: You got the wrong guy. Then he says: Get Reacher for me.” Seriously. That is an actual quote from the actual studio that is promoting this movie. Market Street Cinema times at or after 9 p.m. are for Friday and Saturday only. Rave showtimes are valid for Friday only. Chenal 9, McCain Mall and Movies 10 showtimes were not available by press deadline. Find up-to-date listings at arktimes.com. NEW MOVIES The Central Park Five (NR) — Documentary about the wrongful conviction of five teen-agers in the 1989 Central Park Jogger case. Market Street: 1:45, 4:00, 6:45, 9:00. Cirque Du Soleil: Worlds Away 3D (PG-13) — It’s a Cirque Du Soleil movie and it’s in 3D. Rave: 2:00, 7:00. Dabangg 2 (PG-13) — Bollywood action thriller. Rave: 10:55 a.m., 1:55, 5:05, 7:55, 10:40. The Guilt Trip (PG-13) — It’s exactly like “The Road,” except with Seth Rogen and Barbara Streisand and the world hasn’t ended yet and it’s supposedly a comedy. Breckenridge: 11:45 a.m., 4:50, 7:25, 9:45. Lakewood: 11:35 a.m., 2:25, 4:35, 7:20, 10:00. Rave: 11:15 a.m., 1:50, 4:35, 7:20, 9:55. Riverdale: 9:10 a.m., 11:20 a.m., 1:30, 3:40, 5:50, 8:00, 10:10. Jack Reacher (PG-13) — Cliche-a-thon action thriller starring Tom Cruise and, for some reason, Werner Herzog. Breckenridge: 12:35, 4:15, 7:20, 10:15. Rave: 10:00 a.m., 1:00, 4:05, 7:15, 10:30. Riverdale: 9:05 a.m., 11:50 a.m., 2:35, 5:20, 8:05, 10:50. Lay the Favorite (R) — Bruce Willis is a bookie who finds a hooker with a heart of cash and a mind for numbers. Market Street: 2:00, 4:30, 7:00, 9:15. Monsters Inc. 3D (G) — Pixar film about a group of monsters contending with a precocious, fearless youngster. Breckenridge: 4:35 (2D), 12:05, 7:30, 9:50. Lakewood: 11:50 a.m., 2:35, 4:55, 7:30, 9:45 (2D), 11:20 a.m., 2:05, 7:00, 9:15. Rave: 10:50 a.m. (2D), 1:30, 4:00, 6:45, 9:30 (3D). This is 40 (R) — Remember how in “Knocked Up” there was that joyless yuppie couple played by Paul Rudd and Leslie Mann? Here is a movie all about them. Breckenridge: 12:25, 4:25, 7:15, 10:10. Rave: 10:05 a.m., 1:15, 4:30, 7:45p, 11:00. Riverdale: 9:15 a.m., 12:05, 2:55, 5:45, 8:35, 11:25. RETURNING THIS WEEK Anna Karenina (R) — If director Joe Wright
DECEMBER 19, 2012
(“Pride and Prejudice,” “Atonement”) hates the term “Oscar bait,” maybe he should, you know, stop Oscar-baiting so much. Rave: 11:20 a.m., 2:25, 5:25, 8:20, 11:25. Argo (R) — A group of Americans in revolutionary Iran make an improbable escape.Based on actual events, from director Ben Affleck. Lakewood: 11:30 a.m., 2:05, 4:40, 7:15, 9:50. Riverdale: 1:05, 3:45. Flight (R) — Denzel Washington is a pilot with a substance abuse problem, from director Robert Zemeckis. Breckenridge: 12:05, 3:40, 7:10, 10:10. Rave: 12:20, 3:40, 7:10, 10:25. Riverdale: 9:30 a.m., 12:25, 3:20, 6:15, 9:10. The Hobbit (PG-13) — Slate’s headline: “Bored of the Rings – The Hobbit looks like Teletubbies and is way too long.” Ooh … burn. Whatever, it’ll probably gross bajillions. Breckenridge: noon, 4:00, 7:30 (2D), 11:30 a.m., 12:30, 3:30, 4:30, 7:00, 9:30. Rave: 11:30 a.m., 12:30, 3:15, 4:15, 7:00, 8:00, 10:45, 11:45 (2D), 10:30 a.m., noon, 1:00, 3:45, 4:45, 7:30, 8:30, 11:15 (3D), 11:00 a.m., 2:45, 6:30, 10:15 (3D XTreme). Riverdale: 9:00 a.m., 12:25, 3:50, 7:15, 10:40. Killing Them Softly (R) — Awesome-looking mafia flick, with Brad Pitt, Ray Liotta and James Gandolfini (!). Lakewood: noon, 2:20, 4:50, 7:05, 9:30. Life of Pi (PG) — Based on the smash-hit book of the same name, from director Ang Lee. Breckenridge: 12:20, 3:45, 7:35, 10:20. Rave: 11:10 a.m., 2:10, 5:10, 8:10, 11:10. (3D). Riverdale: 6:25, 9:05. Lincoln (PG-13) — Steven Spielberg’s biopic about Abraham Lincoln, with Daniel Day Lewis and Sally Field. Breckenridge: 12:15, 3:50, 7:05, 10:15. Rave: 12:15, 3:35, 7:35, 10:50. The Other Son (PG-13) — A Palestinian and an Israeli discover they were switched at birth. Market Street: 2:15, 4:30, 7:15, 9:00. The Perks of Being a Wallflower (PG-13) — Based on the bestselling coming-of-age novel, with Emma Watson. Lakewood 8: 11:40 a.m., 2:10, 4:40, 7:00, 9:35. Playing for Keeps (PG-13) — Rom-com about a former pro soccer player who returns home to mend fences with his son, only to be accosted by soccer moms because he’s so studly. Lakewood: 11:45 a.m., 2:15, 4:30, 7:10, 9:25.
Red Dawn (PG-13) — Not so much a remake as an act of cinematic necrophilia — and an unnecessary one at that. Rave: 11:25 a.m., 4:25, 9:40. Rise of the Guardians (PG) — Animated adventure story about a group of heroes who protect the imaginations of children from an evil spirit who wants to take over the world. Breckenridge: 11:50, 4:45, 7:40, 10:00. Rave: 10:25 a.m., 2:20, 4:50, 7:40, 10:05. Riverdale: 9:25 a.m., 11:35 a.m., 1:45, 3:55, 6:05, 8:15, 10:25. A Royal Affair (R) — Period piece about a crazy Dutch king, with lots of powdered wigs and frilly vestments and shocked gasping from people who don’t get enough sunlight. Market Street: 1:30, 4:00, 6:45, 9:15. The Sessions (R) — Helen Hunt is a sex surrogate who helps the seriously disabled John Hawkes. This has gotten universally great reviews. Market Street: 2:00, 4:20, 7:00, 9:00. Riverdale: 9:30 a.m., 11:40 a.m., 1:50, 4:00, 6:01, 8:20, 10:30. Skyfall (PG-13) — An aging Bond still can’t be beat. Breckenridge: 12:10, 4:10, 7:15, 10:20. Rave: 12:45, 3:55, 7:25, 10:35. Riverdale: 9:15 a.m., 12:05, 2:55, 5:45, 8:35. Twilight: Breaking Dawn Part 2 (PG-13) — Vampire movie sequel starring the girl who cheated on the guy, plus the other guy, the werewolf one. Oh yeah, get this: It’s the last one in the series! Rave: 11:45 a.m., 2:40, 5:30, 8:15, 11:05. Chenal 9 IMAX Theatre: 17825 Chenal Parkway, 821-2616, www.dtmovies.com. Cinemark Movies 10: 4188 E. McCain Blvd., 945-7400, www.cinemark.com. Cinematown Riverdale 10: Riverdale Shopping Center, 296-9955, www.riverdale10.com. Lakewood 8: 2939 Lakewood Village Drive, 7585354, www.fandango.com. Market Street Cinema: 1521 Merrill Drive, 312-8900, www.marketstreetcinema.net. Rave Colonel Glenn 18: 18 Colonel Glenn Plaza, 687-0499, www.ravemotionpictures.com. Regal Breckenridge Village 12: 1-430 and Rodney Parham, 224-0990, www.fandango.com. Regal McCain Mall 12: 3929 McCain Blvd., 7531380, www.regmovies.com.
Unexpectedly good ‘The Hobbit’ may move slower than ‘Rings,’ but it’s still a good ride. BY SAM EIFLING
he early knocks against “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey” are only knocks if you’re not really interested in seeing “The Hobbit.” It’s too long? True, 170 minutes is enough time to begin worrying about bed sores. But if you enjoy watching “The Hobbit,” which you almost certainly will, then that’s just more to love. Its 48 frames per second is too clear, too clinical? That falls shy of true hardship in a film this meticulous. The score sounds too much like the “Lord of the Rings” score? We really are picking nits now. It’s as if we’re supposed to hold Peter Jackson’s preposterous ambition for this project against him, even after 2003’s “Lord of the Rings: Return of the King” won 11 Oscars and is now ranked by IMDB.com users as one of the top 10 movies ever. Even if he won’t duplicate that feat with “The Hobbit,” he’s going to go down trying — just check out that subtitle. It might well have been “An Unexpected Trilogy,” for Jackson is bent on rendering J.R.R. Tolkien’s seminal 1937 fantasy novel “The Hobbit” (310 pages) into three feature-length movies, the same number Jackson made for Tolkien’s three “Lord of the Rings” volumes (1,571 pages). Necessarily, this is a slower movie than the “LOTR” trio. But here’s what you get in exchange for your patience: easier character introductions and scenes that get to breathe, all with just as much adventure-story action. Tolkien’s novels have enjoyed terrific longevity not only because they feed (and in fact create) fantasy nerds; they’re also wonderful travelogues, discursive and embroidered with the kind of asides that pepper real journeys. In this, “The Hobbit” is its own best case for not cramming every last moment with axe fights and near-escapes, though of course those are also abundant. After the events of “Lord of the Rings,” we find Bilbo Baggins, a hobbit, sitting to pen a memoir for his nephew, Elijah Wood’s Frodo. We’re transported to Bag End pre-“LOTR,” when a young Bilbo (Martin Freeman, of the BBC version of “The Office”) receives a visit from the wizard Gandalf (Ian McKellen, back in the Oscar-nominated role) and soon finds his home overrun by a dozen boisterous dwarves. They are staging a quest to retake their one-
Prepare the literary lovers in your life
‘THE HOBBIT’: Martin Freeman stars.
time mountain stronghold from Smaug, a dragon that in a long-ago fit of goldlust overran the entire dwarf kingdom, scattering its inhabitants. The heir to the dwarf throne is Thorin (a sullen Richard Armitage), bent on avenging his fallen grandfather and father, but holding a grudge against elves that falls somewhere shy of helpful. Gandalf has convinced the dwarf troupe they need a hobbit — this hobbit, in fact — to join their ranks and serve as a “burglar,” for some highly dangerous but unspecified heist within the dragon-keep. Bilbo dithers, then relents to joining, yet some time must pass, and adventures befall them, before his new dwarf cohort sees him as anything more than a ninny. If we may level a serious charge against “The Hobbit,” it’s that the action and dialogue swerve every so often into the cartoonish. For as much makeup and false noses dot this film, Jackson’s also running his protagonists through elaborate settings that are often no less digital than your average Xbox game. Through it all, Bilbo and Gandalf and the dwarves tend to emerge as unscathed as Looney Tunes through some thoroughly implausible scenarios. For all its intensity, the action remains ultimately benign and the risk token. But it also contains no small degree of fun. Jackson gives the middlebrow world of Middle Earth every chance to succeed and grants Tolkien’s vision the room it needs to thrive. Bilbo’s riddling encounter with the ring-mad Gollum (Andy Serkis again, swathed in pixels) stands out as a scene that cranks up a high degree of tension without feeling rushed. Even if we did expect this journey, we can be surprised, pleasantly, by its pace.
with great books from authors coming to Little Rock in 2013! Arkansas WAND is hosting Leymah Gbowee. Philander Smith College will feature J.R. Martinez in January for their Bless the Mic Series. Pyramid Art, Books & Custom Framing is the perfect place for your literary needs. Preserve your holiday memories with quality conservation or decorative custom picture framing.
1001 Wright Avenue, Suite C • 501.372.5824 • pyramidbooks.org
3rd Annual Little Rock JingLe MingLe
December 23rd, 2012 Have you been looking for a reason and a season to get dressed and enjoy a night on the town? Look no more! Sunday, December 23rd is the night that you’ve been waiting for. The season is all about giving, so our gift to you is free admission all night to the 3rd Annual Jingle Mingle. All we require is that you bring at least four canned goods to donate to local shelters. By bringing canned goods, you’ll receive free admission and drink specials!
Lulav Modern Eatery 220 W 6th St • Little Rock Fri | 12.23.12 | 9pm – until Cocktail Attire A DJ will entertain the evening through the art of music. Presenting Sponsors:
DECEMBER 19, 2012
A TO Z, CONT.
is for “The Velvet Bulldozer.” That’s the nickname of legendary blues guitarist Albert King who was finally inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, 20 years after his death. King grew up in Forrest City and started his long musical career in Osceola. He was all sorts of influential on other blues wailers, like Eric Clapton and Mike Bloomfield, and he released several classic albums on Stax. He’s buried in Edmondson (Crittenden County).
is for actor Wes Bentley, whose comeback gained traction in 2012, most notably with his role as distinctively bearded villain Seneca Crain in the teen blockbuster “The Hunger Games.” The Jonesboro native had a rough patch after his breakout role in the seemed-really-serious-and-meaningful-at-the-time film “American Beauty.” He’s recovered from drug addiction and seems to be on the rise again. Along with “The Hunger Games,” Bentley also starred opposite Frank Langella in the indie drama “The Time Being,” and he’s also starring in Terence Malick’s upcoming “Knight of Cups,” alongside Christian Bale, Natalie Portman, Cate Blanchett and several others.
DECEMBER 19, 2012
in addition to being a letter that very few words start with, is also the Roman numeral for 10. So in addition to the other 25 alphabetized items, here, in no particular order, are 10 more cool Arkansas entertainment-related things that happened in 2012: 1) The Half Japanese Weekend that Thick Syrup Records founder Travis McElroy put on at Maxine’s in October. 2) Laundry for the Apocalypse put out a fantastic debut album (full disclosure: band member Aaron Sarlo freelances for the Times). 3) War Chief released a very satisfying full-length, “Letters from Prester John.” 4) The first ever Root Cafe/Arkansas Times Beard Growing Competition, which kicked off this month and concludes in February at the South Main Mardi Gras event. 5) The White Water Tavern Holiday Hangout, a three-day extravaganza organized this month by Last Chance Records, the WWT and Tree of Knowledge distribution. 6) Hollywood producer Courtney Pledger was named executive director of the Arkansas Motion
AFTER DARK, CONT. Picture Institute, an umbrella group devoted to promoting cinema in the state. Her first major was to serve as interim director of the Hot Springs Documentary Film Festival, which might not have continued without the joint leadership of her and HSDFI board chair Susan Altrui. Together, despite financial obstacles and being forced from the Malco Theatre, they helped put together one of the strongest festival lineups in years. 7) Bonnie Montgomery released a fantastic EP and went on tour with Gossip, opening for the band across the U.S. and Europe. 8) Mary Steenburgen was uncanny as right-wing Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer in a hilarious Funny or Die! skit about undocumented immigrants “self-deporting,” in the words of Mittens Romney. 9) Filmmakers and Little Rock Film Festival founders Brent and Craig Renaud won an Edward R. Murrow Award for a piece they filmed in Haiti for the New York Times. 10) The Holy Shakes won our 20th Musicians Showcase and released a cracking debut. Unfortunately, the band broke up this summer.
is for “YIK3LIF3!” 607’s follow-up to last year’s “YIK3S!” which careful readers will no doubt recall as the “Y” entry on last year’s A-Z list. But hey, as long as Adrian Tillman keeps releasing albums of this quality, he’ll have a spot on this list no matter the title. Standout tracks from “YIK3LIF3!” include the withering “AK-47 Percent,” the synth-heavy “Puppy Breath” and “Just a Man” and the eerily minimalist “Pit Bull Gums,” which recalls Terry Riley or Philip Glass and ends with a “that’s what she said” joke.
is for Zero, as in that was how many tickets were left for the inaugural Arkansas Times Craft Beer Festival. Not to toot our own horn too much, but the event was a huge success, with 800 people sampling 150 labels brought in by 30 breweries from around the country. They ranged from Arkansas favorites like Diamond Bear and Vino’s to giants of craft beer, such as Sierra Nevada, New Belgium, Anchor, Goose Island and Sam Adams, as well as smaller but highly respected brewers like Ommegang and North Coast. Add in food and live music, and what you’ve got is an annual event to look forward to every fall.
Ted Ludwig Trio. Capital Bar and Grill, 9 p.m., free. 111 Markham St. 501-374-7474. www.capitalhotel.com/CBG. Weakness for Blondes, The Steepwater Band. 18-and-older. Stickyz Rock ‘n’ Roll Chicken Shack, 9 p.m., $6. 107 Commerce St. 501-3727707. www.stickyz.com. Zack Carpenter. Hibernia Irish Tavern, 8 p.m. 9700 N. Rodney Parham Road. 501-246-4340. www.hiberniairishtavern.com.
The Chinaman, Ben Malone. The Loony Bin, 7:30 and 10 p.m., $7-$10. 10301 N. Rodney Parham Road. 501-228-5555. www.loonybincomedy.com. The Main Thing. Two-act original comedy play “A Fertle Holiday.” The Joint, 8 p.m., $20. 301 Main St. No. 102, NLR. 501-372-0205. thejointinlittlerock.com.
Little Rock West Coast Dance Club. Dance lessons. Singles welcome. Ernie Biggs, 7 p.m., $2. 307 Clinton Ave. 501-247-5240. www. arstreetswing.com. Moscow Classical Ballet: “The Nutcracker.” Walton Arts Center, Dec. 22, 2 and 7 p.m.; Dec. 23, 2 p.m., $32-$46. 495 W. Dickson St., Fayetteville. 479-443-5600.
2012 Christmas Caravan. Participants are encouraged to decorate their vehicles and wear Christmas-themed clothing to create a festive atmosphere. The Caravan is made up of volunteers who will gather bringing automobiles loaded with coats, clothing, shoes, sleeping bags, blankets and other donations for area homeless, as well as gifts of toys for homeless and low income children who attend the event. Clinton Presidential Center, 8:30 a.m. 1200 President Clinton Ave. 370-8000. christmascaravan.org/. Argenta Farmers Market. Argenta, 7 a.m.-12 p.m. Main Street, NLR. Falun Gong meditation. Allsopp Park, 9 a.m., free. Cantrell & Cedar Hill Roads. Hillcrest Farmers Market. Pulaski Heights Baptist Church, 7 a.m.-12 p.m. 2200 Kavanaugh Blvd. “Lights in the Landscape.” Holiday lighting display. Closed Christmas Day. Garvan Woodland Gardens, through Dec. 31, 5-9 p.m., $5-$10. 550 Akridge Road, Hot Springs. 501-262-9300. www. garvangardens.org. River Market ice skating. Go to www.holidaysinlittlerock.com for rink times. River Market Pavilions, Continues through Jan. 6, $9. 400 President Clinton Ave. 375-2552. holidaysinlittlerock.com. Saturday Story Time: “’Twas the Night Before Christmas.” Pyramid Art Books and Custom Framing, 10:30 a.m. 1001 Wright Ave. 501-3726822. hearnefineart.com.
Arkansas vs. Alabama A&M. Verizon Arena, 7 p.m., $25. 1 Alltel Arena Way, NLR. 501-9759001. verizonarena.com.
Toy making for ages 6-9. See Dec. 21.
SUNDAY, DEC. 23
Gold Diggin’ Mothers: Kings of Leon Tribute. 18-and-older. Stickyz Rock ‘n’ Roll Chicken Shack, 9 p.m., $5. 107 Commerce St. 501-3727707. www.stickyz.com. Karaoke with DJ Sara. Hardrider Bar & Grill,
AFTER DARK, CONT. 7 p.m., free. 6613 John Harden Drive, Cabot. 501-982-1939. Linwood’s Localpalooza: Queen Anne’s Revenge, Mourning View, The Steven Neeper Band, Jason Greenlaw & The Groove, Honky Rebel, The Supporting Cast, Severe Headwound, 5 Point Cove, Kid D, Flint Eastwood, Found & Fearless. Juanita’s, 5 p.m., $5. 614 President Clinton Ave. 501-3721228. www.juanitas.com. Michael Eubanks. Lone Star Steakhouse and Saloon, 7 p.m. 10901 N Rodney Parham Road. 501-227-8898. www.lonestarsteakhouse.com. Sunday Jazz Brunch with Ted Ludwig and Joe Cripps. Vieux Carre, 11 a.m. 2721 Kavanaugh Blvd. 501-663-1196. www.vieuxcarrecafe.com.
Moscow Classical Ballet: “The Nutcracker.” Walton Arts Center, 2 p.m., $32-$46. 495 W. Dickson St., Fayetteville. 479-443-5600.
“Lights in the Landscape.” Holiday lighting display. Closed Christmas Day. Garvan Woodland Gardens, through Dec. 31, 5-9 p.m., $5-$10. 550 Akridge Road, Hot Springs. 501-262-9300. www.garvangardens.org. “Live from the Back Room.” Vino’s, 7 p.m. 923 W. 7th St. 501-375-8466. www.vinosbrewpub.com. River Market ice skating. Go to www.holidaysinlittlerock.com for rink times. River Market Pavilions, Continues through Jan. 6, $9. 400 President Clinton Ave. 375-2552. holidaysinlittlerock.com.
MONDAY, DEC. 24
Irish Traditional Music Session. Hibernia Irish Tavern, Fourth and second Monday of every month, 7 p.m. 9700 N. Rodney Parham Road. 501-246-4340. www.hiberniairishtavern.com. Michael Carenbauer. RJ Tao Restaurant & Ultra Lounge, 6:30 p.m. 5501 Kavanaugh Blvd. 501603-0080. www.rjtaorocks.com.
“Lights in the Landscape.” Holiday lighting display. Closed Christmas Day. Garvan Woodland Gardens, through Dec. 31, 5-9 p.m., $5-$10. 550 Akridge Road, Hot Springs. 501-262-9300. www.garvangardens.org. River Market ice skating. Go to www.holidaysinlittlerock.com for rink times. River Market Pavilions, Continues through Jan. 6, $9. 400 President Clinton Ave. 375-2552. holidaysinlittlerock.com.
TUESDAY, DEC. 25
Tyrannosaurus Chicken. Midtown Billiards, 12 a.m., $5. 1316 Main St. 501-372-9990. midtownar.com.
“Latin Night.” Revolution, 7 p.m., $5 regular, $7 under 21. 300 President Clinton Ave. 501-8230090. www.revroom.com.
“Lights in the Landscape.” Holiday lighting display. Closed Christmas Day. Garvan Woodland Gardens, through Dec. 31, 5-9 p.m., $5-$10. 550 Akridge Road, Hot Springs. 501-262-9300. www.garvangardens.org. Live Trivia by Challenge Entertainment. The Tavern Sports Grill, 7 p.m., free. 17815 Chenal Parkway. 501-830-2100. www.thetavernsportsgrill.com.
River Market ice skating. Go to www.holidaysinlittlerock.com for rink times. River Market Pavilions, Continues through Jan. 6, $9. 400 President Clinton Ave. 375-2552. holidaysinlittlerock.com.
THIS WEEK IN THEATER
“Improv-ocalypse!.” ImprovLittleRock’s Mayan THURSDAY doomsday-themed comedy show. The Public DECEMBER 20 Theatre, Fri., Dec. 21, 10 p.m., $8. 616 Center St. 501-374-7529. www.thepublictheatre.com. ImprovLittleRock’s “Family Christmas.” Christmas-themed improv comedy. The Public Theatre, Sat., Dec. 22, 10 p.m., $8. 616 Center St. 501-374-7529. www.thepublictheatre.com. “Pajama Tops.” Farce in which a would-be philandering husband gets a surprise when his 7 Days a Week - Happy Hour Specials wife secretly invites the girl he’s been seeing 501.603.0 080 on the side to spend the weekend with them. Weekly live entertainment Murry’s Dinner Playhouse, through Dec. 30: thursday night is ladies night CUSTOM FRAMING, FRAMED PRINTS, DECORATIvE MIRRORS Tue.-Sat., 6 p.m.; Sun., 11 a.m. and 5:30 p.m., rjtaorocks.com · 5501 kaVaNaUGH 1813 N. GraNt · 661.0687 $15-$33. 6323 Col. Glenn Road. 501-562-3131. murrysdinnerplayhouse.com. “Period of Adjustment.” Rarely performed Happy Hour In The Heights comedy from Tennessee Williams, recomFor All Ages mended for agesRefreshments 13 and older. Walton Arts Center’s Nadine Baum Studios, Thu., Dec. 20, 5-7pm 7:30 p.m.; Fri., Dec. 21,On 7:30 Charlotte’s p.m.; Sat., Dec. 22, Porch of Mount St. Mary acadeMy 2 and 7:30 p.m.; Sun., Dec. 23, 2 and 7 p.m.; Thu., Dec. 27, 7:30 p.m.; Fri., Dec. 28, 7:30 p.m.; Refreshments For All 5-7pm 5811 Kavanaugh Boulevard Sat., Dec. 29, 7:30 p.m.; Sun., Dec. 30, 2 and 7 p.m., $10-$22. 505 W. Spring St., Fayetteville. Best Sushi in Central Arkansas! 479-443-5600. theatre2.org. “White Christmas.” Based on the classic Hollywood film and the Broadway show, with Christmas music of Irving Berlin. Arkansas Repertory Theatre, Thu., Dec. 20, 7 p.m.; Fri., 10% oFF aLL PurcHaSeS Dec. 21, 7 p.m.; Sat., Dec. 22, 7 p.m.; Sun., Dec. DURING HAPPY HOUR 23, 2 and 7 p.m.; Wed., Dec. 26, 7 p.m.; Thu., 5823 kaVaNaUGH 663.9888 sUsHicaferocks.com 5709 kavanaugh Blvd. 225.3220 Dec. 27, 7 p.m.; Fri., Dec. 28, 7 p.m.; Sat., Dec. 29, 7 p.m.; Sun., Dec. 30, 2 and 7 p.m. 601 Main St. 501-378-0405. www.therep.org.
HALLOWEEN COSTUME CONTEST
The Concert Belles
NEW EXHIBITIONS, EVENTS
More art listings can be found in the calendar at www.arktimes.com ARKANSAS ARTS CENTER: “Toy Making for Ages 6-9,” 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Dec. 20-21, $84 for members, $104 non-members. Register at arkarts.com/art_classes. 374-2000. THEA CENTER, 401 Main St., NLR: “HemingwayPfeiffer Museum Student Exhibition,” 75 works by students 9th through 12th grades in and near Piggott, through Dec. 21, Argenta ArtWalk reception 5-8 p.m. Dec. 21. 379-9512. UNIVERSITY OF ARKANSAS AT LITTLE ROCK: “Open Studio,” students in UALR Applied Design classes in furniture design, woodworking, ceramics, metalsmithing, jewelry, blacksmithing, contemporary craft students will show and sell work, give forging demonstrations and hold silent auction and raffle, 4-7 p.m. Dec. 19. 683-7556.
Growing up is hard, but . . .
there ain’t no cure for the Summertime Blues “a bittersweet look back on the sixties” Midwest Book Review Summertime Blues, by B. R. Fleming a tale about growing up in Central Arkansas . . . On sale at Arkansas Record & CD Exchange, Amazon.com, The Kindle Store, Smashwords, and book retailers
YOU’RE IN GOOD COMPANY
CALL TO ARTISTS
The Walton Arts Center is seeking proposals from visual and performing artists for naturethemed work for its 2013 Artosphere: Arkansas’ Arts & Nature Festival.” Up to three Artosphere Partner Grants worth up to $6,000 will be awarded for projects. Deadline to submit is 11:59 p.m. Jan. 7, 2013; award announcement Jan. 31, 2013. More information under the Get Involved tab at www.artospherefestival.org.
ARKANSAS ARTS CENTER, MacArthur Park: “44th Collectors Show and Sale,” through Dec. 30; “Toys Designed by Artists,” through CONTINUED ON PAGE 39
arktimes.com / 501.375.2985 SOURCE: THE MEDIA AUDIT, JAN. 2012 www.arktimes.com
DECEMBER 19, 2012
Collector alert: Show and sale at AAC. BY LESLIE NEWELL PEACOCK
he 44th Collectors Show and Sale at the Arkansas Arts Center is not, alas, for all who would buy art. The prices are more than what most of us can pay. It is, however, a fine place to look at what’s available on the market and what fine art from New York galleries costs, and to wonder, who will buy this Gaston Lachaise drawing for $9,000 and leave it to the Arts Center in his or her will? This year’s show is jam-packed into the Strauss Gallery, hung in the manner of the French salon, without much wall showing. (Think of Man Ray’s famous photograph of Gertrude Stein and Alice Toklas in their art-jammed salon. I’m not sure why I do, but I do.)
If I had all the money in the world, the Lachaise would be mine: It’s an elegant, modern line drawing of a nude, the body’s volume created from flat space with a few curving strokes. In the olden days, there were small lithographs, such as book illustrations, things for the hoi polloi to acquire, but today you’ll need 12,000 clams to pick up that Thomas Sully figure study; the Pere Santilare Perarnau hyperrealistic still life 21st century-style (the grapes and figs are in a plastic container) is (reasonable, really) $16,000. You could go for a pair of early 19th century landscapes in gouache by Louis-Albert-Ghislain Bacler D’albe, who, you might have suspected, was a
AT THE ARTS CENTER: Michael Waugh’s “The American Jobs Act, part 2.”
French artist (I can’t resist noting the price: $90,000 the pair). Or you could buy something created this year by New York artist Michael Waugh: a 42-by-82 inch ink on mylar drawing of crickets in high grass (“The American Jobs Act, part 2,” $23,350). The work was exhibited in the “11th National Drawing Invitational” in September at the Arts Center. But put aside the price tags for a bit
and just enjoy the show. Don’t overlook the three-dimensional pieces, particularly William Hunter’s “Paisley Flutes,” a cocobolo wood bowl with spiraling notches; and Nishihata Tadashi’s tando clay vessel, thickly walled, diagonally carved and covered in a thick ash glaze. There’s also a lovely John Marin watercolor. And more, of course. The show and sale runs through Sunday, Dec. 30.
AFTER DARK, CONT. Jan. 6; “50 for Arkansas,” work donated by Dorothy and Herbert Vogel, through Jan. 6; “Multiplicity,” exhibition on printmaking from the Smithsonian American Art Museum, through Jan. 6. 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Tue.-Fri., 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Sat., 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Sun. 372-4000. BOSWELL-MOUROT, 5815 Kavanaugh Blvd.: “Annual Holiday Show,” featuring “Glitter Jesus” by Jon Etienne Mourot, sculpture by Diana Ashley and paintings by Beverly McLarty, Robin Hazard-Bishop and others. 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Tue.-Fri., 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Sat. 664-0030. BUTLER CENTER GALLERIES, Arkansas Studies Institute, 401 President Clinton Ave.: “From the Vault: Works from the Central Arkansas Library System’s Permanent Collection,” through March 23, 2013, “Arkansas League of Artists” exhibition, through Jan. 26; “Solastalgia,” work by Susan Chambers and Louise Halsey, through Jan. 26. 9 a.m.-6 p.m. Mon.-Sat. 320-5700. CANTRELL GALLERY, 8206 Cantrell Road: “The Story Teller,” paintings by John Deering, through Dec. 24. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Mon.-Sat. 2241335. CHROMA GALLERY, 5707 Kavanaugh Blvd.: Work by Robert Reep and other Arkansas artists. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Mon.-Fri., 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Sat. 664-0880. CHRIST CHURCH GALLERY, 509 Scott St.: “The Watercolor Series of Kuhl Brown,” through Dec. 14. 375-2342. COX CREATIVE CENTER, 120 River Market Ave.: “Equinox,” work by UALR students. 3205717. GALLERY 221, 2nd and Center Sts.: 2D works by Mel Fowler, Glen Ledford, jewelry by Rae Ann Bayless. 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Mon.-Fri. 801-0211. GALLERY 26, 2601 Kavanaugh Blvd.: 18th annual “Holiday Art Show,” work by 60-plus artists, through Jan. 12. 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Tue.-Sat. 6648996. GALLERY 360, 900 Rodney Parham Road: “Code,” abstract paintings by Kelley Naylor Wise, through Dec.. 360gallery.blogspot.com. GORRELL GALLERY OF FINE ART, 201 W. 4th
DECEMBER 19, 2012
St.: Work by established and emerging artists, including Doug Gorrell. 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Tue.-Fri., noon-4 p.m. Sat. 607-2225. GREG THOMPSON FINE ART, 429 Main St., NLR: “Southern Abstraction,” work by Pinkney Herbert, James Hendricks, Robyn Horn, Sammy Peters, Robert Rector and Shannon Rogers. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Tue.-Fri., 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Sat. 664-2787. HEARNE FINE ART, 1001 Wright Ave.: “Highlights of 2012,” work by Kennith Humphrey, Chukes, Kevin Cole and others, through Jan. 7; “And the Band Played On,” mixed media paintings and sculpture by Kevin Cole, through Jan. 7. 372-6822. J.W. WIGGINS GALLERY, Sequoyah National Research Center, 500 University Plaza: “Indian Ink: Native Printmakers in the J.S. Wiggins Collection of Native American Art,” curated by Bobby Martin, art professor at John Brown University, through Dec. 14. 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Mon.Fri. 569-8336. LAMAN LIBRARY, 2801 Orange St.: “All Aboard! Lionels at Laman,” annual model train exhibit, through Dec.. 758-1720. L&L BECK GALLERY, 5705 Kavanaugh Blvd.: “Nativity,” through Dec., drawing for free giclee 7 p.m. Dec. 20. 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Tue.-Sat. 6604006. M2GALLERY, 11525 Cantrell: “Holiday Show,” work by Dan Holland, Suzanne Koett, Charles Henry James, Dan Thornhill and Jason Gammel. 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Tue.-Sat. 225-6257. PAINT BOX GALLERY AND FRAME SHOP, 705 Main St., NLR: Paintings by Karlyn Holloway. 374-2848. PULASKI TECHNICAL COLLEGE, 3000 W. Scenic Drive: “It’s About Time,” work by Warren Criswell,” through Dec. 15, Bank of the Ozarks exhibition space, Ottenheimer Library. 8122200. STUDIOMAIN, 1423 Main St.: 2012 AIA Design Awards. www.studio-main.org. UNIVERSITY OF ARKANSAS AT LITTLE ROCK: “Developed and Less Finished:
Painting the Everyday,” M.A. thesis exhibition by Lauren Sukany, through Dec. 20; work by seniors Logan Hunter, Daniel “Skye” Huggins, John Daniel Slaughter, Hwang Young Min, Ariel Mattive, Hannah May, Savana Matton, Gallery III, through mid-Dec.. 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Mon.-Fri. 569-3182. BENTONVILLE CRYSTAL BRIDGES MUSEUM OF AMERICAN ART, 600 Museum Way: “See the Light: The Luminist Tradition in American Art,” light in art from the 19th century through today, through Jan. 26, “Moshe Safdie: The Path to Crystal Bridges,” through Jan. 28; permanent collection of American masterworks spanning four centuries. 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Mon., Thu., Sat.-Sun.; 11 a.m.-9 p.m. Wed.-Fri. 479-418-5700. FAYETTEVILLE UNIVERSITY OF ARKANSAS: “SOLO Show,” plastic dinnerware reconfigured by Kelly Brenner Justice, Anne Kittrell Art Gallery, through January; “Topiary: The Art of Improving Nature,” nine etchings by Louise Bourgeois from the Louise Bourgeois Studio, through Dec. 13, Fine Arts Center gallery. 9 a.m.-5:30 p.m. Mon.-Fri., 2-5 p.m. Sun. 479-575-7987. WALTON ARTS CENTER, 495 W. Dickson St.: “20 Years,” commissioned installation by Kathy Thompson, “My Folklore: The Art of Letitia Huckaby,” both through Jan. 13. 9 a.m.-6 p.m. Mon.-Fri., noon-4 p.m. Sat. 479-443-5600. HOT SPRINGS ALISON PARSONS GALLERY, 802 Central Ave.: Mobiles by Gerald Lee Delavan, through Dec.. 501-625-3001. FINE ARTS CENTER, 626 Central Ave.: “Wintertide,” through Dec. 29. 10:30 a.m.-5 p.m. Tue.-Sat. 501-624-0489. GALLERY CENTRAL, 800 Central Ave.: Paintings by Charles Harrington, featured artist; also paintings by Jacqueline Ellens, Janis Wylie and Jennifer Wilson. 501-318-4278.
JUSTUS FINE ART, 827 Central A: New work by Rebecca Thompson and Dolores Justus, along with jewelry and Christmas ornaments by Kari Albright and Jay Justus. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Wed.Fri. 501-321-2335. TAYLOR’S CONTEMPORANEA, 204 Exchange St.: Mixed media etchings by Kelly Moran, featured artist; also ceramics by Polly Cook, Nat Mitchell and John Wolfe; photographs by Thomas Petillo, Chuck Dodson and Marcus Menefee, and paintings by Warren Criswell, John Robinette, Darrell Loy Scott, Daniel Mark Cassity, James Wu and others. 501-624-0516.
ONGOING MUSEUM EXHIBITS
ARKANSAS SPORTS HALL OF FAME MUSEUM, Verizon Arena, NLR: 10 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Mon.-Sat. 663-4328. CENTRAL HIGH SCHOOL MUSEUM VISITOR CENTER, Bates and Park: Exhibits on the 1957 desegregation of Central and the civil rights movement. 9 a.m.-4:30 p.m. daily. 374-1957. CLINTON PRESIDENTIAL CENTER, 1200 President Clinton Ave.: Permanent exhibits about policies and White House life during the Clinton administration. 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Mon.-Sat., 1-5 p.m. Sun. $7 adults; $5 college students, seniors, retired military; $3 ages 6-17. 370-8000. HISTORIC ARKANSAS MUSEUM, 200 E. Third St.: “Beyond the Expected: Norwood Creech, Paulette Palmer and Edward Wade Jr.,” through Feb. 3, 2013, “Jared Hogue: Mini Faces,” through Jan. 6, 2013, “Barbie Doll: The 11 ½-inch American Icon,” through Jan. 6, 2013; “A Collective Vision,” recent acquisitions, through March 2013. 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Mon.-Sat., 1-5 p.m. Sun. 324-9351. MOSAIC TEMPLARS CULTURAL CENTER, Ninth and Broadway: “A Voice through the Viewfinder: Images of Arkansas’ Black Community by Ralph Armstrong,” through Jan. 5, 2013; permanent exhibits on AfricanAmerican entrepreneurial history in Arkansas. 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Tue.-Sat. 683–3593.
New Italian Chinese Japanese Mexican “Fun” Indian Other Ethnic Food Truck Vegetarian/Vegan
Barbecue Breakfast Brunch Catfish Fried Chicken Deli/Gourmet to go Hamburger Pizza
Go to arktimes.com/readerschoice13 to vote for your favorite restaurants in all categories in the Little Rock area and throughout the rest of the state. Users can only vote once. One rule to keep in mind: If you don’t specify the location of restaurants with multiple locations, your vote will not be counted. Votes must be cast by Jan. 7.
Seafood Buffet Steak Desserts Coffee Home Cooking Place for Kids Romantic Gluten Free Business Lunch Yogurt Wine List Server Chef
ONLINE VOTING ONLY
Arkansas Times once again presents its Readers’ Choice restaurant poll. Yes, it’s time to cast votes in the state’s longest-running annual assessment of the best places to eat in Arkansas.
READERS CHOICE AWARDS
REST OF STATE
BEST RESTAURANTS IN THE AREAS AROUND Benton/Bryant ________________________________
Eureka Springs ________________________________
Hot Springs ____________________________________
31 NOVEMBER 9, 2011 ARKANSAS TIMES
DECEMBER 19, 2012
PROUD TO BE FOR OVER 25 YEARS!
Netflix Pix Hidden gems from Netflix Instant. BY DAVID KOON
JIRO DREAMS OF SUSHI 2011
Capi Peck Trio’s
Mark Abernathy Loca Luna & Red Door
Supporting Local & Global Initiatives – Sourcing Local Suppliers & Growers Using Sustainable Seafood – No Trans Fats – Recycling – Using Recycled Products
MAKE A DIFFERENCE! GO GREEN IN 2013
End Of ThE WOrld
friday, dEcEmbEr 21 9pm - ‘Til ???
Bunker Party the end is here. so is the Beer. Featuring
$2 shoCk toP Bottles • $1 zoMBie shots • $2 end of the world shots hAlf off APPetizers After 9PM
313 President Clinton Ave • river MArket 501-374-1441 • www.gusAnosPizzA.CoM 42
DECEMBER 19, 2012
This writer likes people who do things with their hands, and absolutely adores those storied few who elevate something seemingly mundane to the level of art. That’s a big part of the reason I like sushi. Nobody does the mundane-as-art better than the Japanese, which is probably why sushi got started there. A little fish, some rice, a few veggies and a whole lot of artistic flair, and lowly ingredients can become abstract sculpture on the plate, something so pretty it can even make you feel a little guilty about eating it. In the lovely documentary, “Jiro Dreams of Sushi,” filmmakers take a close look at Jiro Ono, an 85-year-old Japanese sushi chef who has spent his whole life in pursuit of perfection, rising from poverty to become the undisputed master of the form. From a tiny, perfectly-appointed, ten-seat restaurant in a subway station, Jiro reigns like a Jedi master, dishing up perfect little morsels for $300 a plate to the rich and powerful, who are happy to wait two months for an audience with him. Adding to the poignancy of Jiro’s own pursuit is that of his sons — aging apprentices for whom Jiro has always been more of a boss than a father. Though they should be masters in their own right, they live in their father’s shadow, silently struggling with the reality that once Jiro is gone, they’ll wind up as also-rans in the minds of those who loved him. A beautifully made documentary that should delight any foodie, but especially those who love sushi.
Seasons 1 and 2
We’re going to talk about sex now, children. Not the sex your mother told you about. We mean the freaky stuff. While most people are just fine sticking to “missionary-with-the-lightsoff,” that just doesn’t cut it for some of the sexual spelunkers among us, those people whose crank can only be turned by whips, collars, patent leather boots and referring to their significant other as Master or Mistress. Yes, S&M is creeping into the mainstream, and is nowhere near as weird as it used to be. You can buy a ball gag at the mall these days, so one can only wonder where those who can only get off on
the fringe will have to go for satisfaction once Woman’s Day starts printing kinky sex tips for moms on the go. For those curious sorts who aren’t quite ready to make the leap into ropes, whips and chains without a little couch research, Netflix Instant offers the first two seasons of the Canadian reality show “Kink,” which aired from 2001 to 2006 (and probably on their version of latenight Cinemax, if the sexual situations and copious nudity are any measure). Each season features a revealing look at a group of kinky Canucks —”You like it when I spank ya, eh?” — both gay and straight, as they get their licks in, so to speak. I’ve only caught a few episodes, but what I’ve seen so far is promising. If you’ve ever been curious about how the local Spankers Union gets their groove on, this is an interesting place to start.
CLASSIC CONCERTS It can suck to be a fan of old time rock ’n’ roll, especially if you’re one of those who thinks the purest rock is the rock you see live. Thanks to the livefast-die-young culture that’s pervaded rock and roll — and later hip-hop — since the early days, there’s a good chance all hope of a true reunion tour for most bands died face down in a backstage restroom in 1976. Besides, you don’t want to see your rock idols when they’re fat and old, wheezing through their hits while they bankroll their retirement in the Bahamas. You want to see them in their prime — all piss and vinegar and attitude! Luckily for rock fans, Netflix Instant now features a very nice selection (available under the “music” subcategory if you hit the Netflix website) of shot-live concerts and making-of-the-album documentaries from many of the greats, including Lou Reed, Ike and Tina Turner, Bob Dylan, Black Sabbath, The Pretenders, Cream, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Issac Hayes, Korn, Edith Piaf, Michael Jackson, Wu-Tang Clan, Joan Baez, Elvis Presley, Neil Young, The Doors, The Who, Metallica and many, many others. Definitely cheaper than buying tickets to The Absolute Last Ever (For Real This Time) Reunion Tour of your favorite band, and you don’t have to watch in pity and horror as the guy whose music you once made out to changes his oxygen tank in the middle of the set.
DECEMBER 19, 2012
start 2013 in style
PHOTOGRAPHY BY BRIAN CHILSON
nother year is almost over and CUE is ready to ring in 2013 with a bang! This New Year’s Eve, there’s something in town for everyone. From a quiet dinner to dinner parties and late-night happenings, there’s plenty of fun for all. We’ve picked some great outfits for the big night to help you look your best. Forget about the ball drop — these chic, affordable looks are sure to make you the center of attention. We’d like to send a special thank you to Ashlee Long of Next Bistro and Bar, Robert Tju of RJ Tao and Mary Beth Ringold of Cajun’s Wharf for accommodating the photo shoot at their locations. Check out their plans, and other restaurants/ clubs around town, in our special Counting Down to 2013 feature. Continued on page 44
The perfect New Year’s Eve outfit is one that is sexy chic and exudes confidence. Solita Johnson and Jowaun Wright are dinner and party ready with these great looks. On Solita: 1980’s sweetheart neckline dress ($40) with 80’s geometric belt ($25), 1950’s Kramer choker ($60), rhinestone triple-strand bracelet ($28), vintage cocktail ring ($40) and 1960’s jewel clasp clutch ($20) all from VINTAGE SOCIALITE. Qupid shoes (sale price $24.95) from SHOE CONNECTION. On Jowaun: Ben Sherman vest ($120), Stone Rose woven shirt ($119) and Raven Denim ($195) all from EVOLVE.
Shot on location at RJ TAO. ADVERTISING SUPPLEMENT TO ARKANSAS TIMES
DECEMBER 19, 2012
BEFORE OR AFTER DINNER/PARTY
Eve menu, including special prices on house champagne.
MADURO CIGAR BAR & LOUNGE 109 Main St. 374-3710 www.facebook.com/MaduroLounge Join Maduro Cigar Bar & Lounge for a fun New Year’s Eve listening to Maduro’s signature Latin Jazz & Dance music while watching the New Year’s festivities on large flat screen TV’s. Specials include 20% off all wines (by the glass or bottle), including champagne!
COPPER GRILL 300 E. Third St. 375-3333 www.coppergrilllr.com Enjoy a specially created New Year’s Eve menu. Party room space available. Call for reservations.
LULAV 220 West 6th St. 374-5100 www.lulaveatery.com Three seatings to choose from – 5, 7 and 9 p.m. with Lulav house music. Fixed three-course menu at $59 per person with optional wine pairing at $20 per person. View the full menu on the Lulav Facebook page at www. facebook.com/lulavlittlerock.
DINNER COPELAND’S 2602 Shackleford Rd. 312-1616 www.copelandsrestaurantlittlerock.com Enjoy a special select New Year’s
Ringing in the New Year calls for sparkle! Mindy Van Kuren and Brooke Duszota will light up any party with these fabulous finds. On Mindy (left): Sheer chevron black and gold dress ($130), quartz ritual earrings ($62) and Dionysus ring ($85) all from BOX TURTLE. Pierre Dumas black strappy sandal (sale price $34.90) from SHOE CONNECTION. On Brooke: Free People red glitter empire waist dress ($148) and Lucy gold drop crystal earrings ($20) all from TULIPS. Nine West “Glamarama” pump (sale price $56.63) from SHOE CONNECTION.
Shot on location at NEXT BISTRO AND BAR.
RING IN THE NEW YEAR on THIRD THIRD ST. ST. in in the the RIVER RIVER MARKET MARKET on
EAT PLAY STAY
ROCK OUT WITH
THE K ARLA CASE BAND
SPECIALLY CREATED NEW YEAR'S EVE MENU
CALL NOW FOR
NO COVER CHARGE! DINNER FILET MIGNON WITH COLCANNON SPECIAL & GLASS OF HOUSE WINE $
Party Favors & Champagne Toast at Midnight
401 E. THIRD, LITTLE ROCK | 501.244.0542 DUGANSPUBLR.COM DON’T HAVE A DESIGNATED DRIVER?
DECEMBER 19, 2012
ADVERTISING SUPPLEMENT TO ARKANSAS TIMES
300 E. THIRD ST.
CALL FOR RIVER MARKET RESERVATIONS 501.244.0600 STAY IN THE
SONNY WILLIAMS 500 President Clinton Ave. 324-2999 www.sonnywilliamssteakroom.com Sonny Williams Steakroom will be offering a “Chef’s Dinner” as well as their regular menu. Free valet parking.
SUSHI CAFÉ 5823 Kavanaugh Blvd. 663-9888 www.sushicaferocks.com It’s dinner as usual at Sushi Café with extensive sushi offerings plus café specialties including American Kobe steaks. A bonus feature is that guests will receive passes for complimentary entry into the RJ Tao Dance Party. VESUVIO BISTRO 1501 Merrill Dr. #100 225-0500 www.vesuviobistro.com Vesuvio will be offering a special six-course prix fixe menu for New Year’s Eve featuring your choice of Beef Tagliata or Lobster Fabrizo
for the main course. Limited to 100 guests, reservations required.
BRING IN 2013 IN STYLE! NYE DINNER DINNER 3 Seatings • 5-7-9
DINNER & DANCE
All seatings will enjoy Lulav house music!
1620 SAVOY 1620 Market Street 221-1620 www.1620savoy.com Treat yourself to some fine dining, great music and dancing while ringing in the New Year at 1620 Savoy! This swanky, newly-redone hotspot is the perfect place to bring in the New Year in style. There will be three dinner seatings at 5, 7 and 9 p.m. followed by a New Year’s Eve party from 10:30 p.m. to 1 a.m. Enjoy live music by Pat Henry’s band durContinued on page 47
Three Course Dinner $59 per person See the full menu at facebook.com/lulavlittlerock Optional wine pairing $20 per person
Looking for casual glam without having to wear a dress? This flowy look just may be the answer. Off-white sleeveless tunic ($32) and multi-colored wide-leg pant ($68) from BARBARA GRAVES INTIMATE FASHIONS.
220 West 6th 220 6th Street Street www.lulaveatery.com www.lulaveatery.com www.facebook.com/LulavLittleRock
Get a FREE 25 Gift Card
Now Through Dec. 25 with Purchase of $100 in Gift Card(s)
Shot on location at CAJUN’S WHARF.
Shackleford Crossing • Shackleford & I-430 312-1616 • www.copelandsrestaurantlittlerock.com ADVERTISING SUPPLEMENT TO ARKANSAS TIMES
DECEMBER 19, 2012
L ake Liquor
store wide sale
2012 NYE Details: $35 Cover et from f f u b s re v u e ’o d Heavy hors 3!!! 7 p.m.-until 201 ats, leis, h ( g a w s E Y N ry Complimenta beads, etc ...) ment by in a rt te n e r u o H Happy Richie Johnson is PG-13 d n a B e g ta S in a M DJ Kramer
Now through the eNd of the year
Located right by the MauMeLLe-Morgan exit on i-40 coMing froM LittLe rock, turn Left off MauMeLLe-Morgan exit
All proceeds benefit the Little Rock Zoo
Monday, December 31, 2012 8:00 p.m. – 12:30 a.m. Food, drinks, music, parking, noisemakers, hats — EVERYTHING included for $75 per ticket Info and tickets online at http://www.showclix.com/event/ZooYearsEve2013
mon-sat from 4:30 p.m.
2400 cantrell road • on the arkansas river 501-375-5351
DECEMBER 19, 2012
ADVERTISING SUPPLEMENT TO ARKANSAS TIMES
BUY BY 12 p.m., DEC. 25 and get TWO TICKETS FOR $75 (Limit 2 discount tickets per transaction) #1 Zoo Dr., Little Rock, AR www.littlerockzoo.com
Sexy and fun go hand-in-hand on New Year’s Eve. Bring the sexiness to any gathering with these fantastic dresses. On Brooke (left): French Connection embellished crepe halter dress ($198) and gold/blue lapis hammered earring ($75) from BOX TURTLE. On Mindy: Pink and sequin dress ($68) and pink stone earrings ($55) from TULIPS. Qupid black velvet with pink Mary Janes (sale price $14.95) from SHOE CONNECTION.
ing dinner and then DJ ‘Below-DaRadar” takes over for the party. There is guaranteed to be lots of dancing and great party drink specials. Several gift certificates will also be given away leading up to the New Year countdown. No cover charge but reservations are required for dinner.
S – Gre L A D IgEe Finds in
CAJUN’S WHARF 2400 Cantrell Rd. 375-5351 www.cajunswharf.com Bring in the New Year at Central Arkansas’s favorite live music venue. Cajun’s will be serving up a heavy hors d’oeuvres buffet from 7 p.m. until 2013! There will be complimentary champagne toast at midnight and NYE swag including hats, leis and beads. Richie Johnson provides the Happy Hour entertainment and the main stage band is PG-13 along with DJ Kramer. Doors open at 4 p.m. and the cost is $35.
Vinta irs loft by sta the up
6800 Cantrell Road Shot on location at NEXT BISTRO AND BAR.
DUGAN’S PUB 401 East 3rd St. 244-0542 www.duganspublr.com Dugan’s Pub will be hosting the Karla Case Band starting at 9pm. The kitchen will be serving a dinner special including a Filet mignon with colcannon and glass of house wine for $28. There will also be party favors and a champagne toast at midnight.
Locally Handmade Sterling Silver and Bronze Necklaces
THE EMPRESS OF LITTLE ROCK BED AND BREAKFAST 2120 Louisiana (Quapaw Quarter) 374-7966 www.theempress.com Forget the noise and the noise makers! Attend the “Victorian Affair” Wine Dinner Dance like “Downton Abbey.” Enjoy an elegant dinner Continued on page 48
There’s sure to be lots of dancing while counting down to 2013. This Carmen Marc Valvo emerald halter dress ($159) from BARBARA GRAVES INTIMATE FASHIONS is just the thing to move with ease across the dance floor. Poetic License black suede shoes with emerald heel and sole (sale price $44.95) from SHOE CONNECTION.
Shot on location upstairs at CAJUN’S WHARF.
2616 Kavanaugh | 501.661.1167 M-F 10-6, SAT 10-5
ADVERTISING SUPPLEMENT TO ARKANSAS TIMES
DECEMBER 19, 2012
II into the
L on g Dress $ 165 XS-XL
Barbara Graves Intimate Fashions 10301 N. Rodney Parham Rd., 227-5537 Box Turtle 2616 Kavanaugh Blvd., 661-1167 Evolve & Vintage Socialite 6800 Cantrell Rd., 661-0644 Shoe Connection 9100 Rodney Parham Rd. #105, 225-6242 Tulips 5817 Kavanaugh Blvd., 614-7343
Sh ort Dress $ 110 XS-XL
FIND THE FASHIONS
Breckenridge Village • 501-227-5537
paired with fine wines by the house sommelier followed by dancing in parlors just like “the olden days.” The event is black tie, 8 p.m. to midnight. $225 per couple before December 26; $250 after. Limited Seating. Discounts available for overnight stay. Make reservations now.
THE PEABODY LITTLE ROCK Three Statehouse Plaza 906-4000 www.peabodylittlerock.com www.rivertopparty.com www.facebook.com/PeabodyLittleRock www.facebook.com/rivertoppartyatpeabodylittlerock Be a part of Little Rock’s largest New Year’s Eve celebration at Arkansas’s only four star, four diamond, five duck hotel; The Peabody Little Rock. Throughout the Peabody Little Rock Hotel, three great parties will be happening under one roof. Move easily between three stages of entertainment, each with a distinctly different party atmosphere; a high-energy dance party, rock n’ rhythm, R&B, Hip-Hop and smooth jazz. Check out Tragikly White and DJ Brandon Peck in the Grand Ballroom, DJ Tre Day and G-Force will be at the Lobby Bar, and Rodney Block and the Real Music Lovers in the Pinnacle Room. It only takes a $50 ticket purchased in advance to give you access to these three excellent parties.
RJ TAO 5501 Kavanaugh Blvd., Suite G 603-0080 www.rjtaorocks.com Celebrate New Year’s Eve with a three-course prix fixe menu for $35-60 per person. Reservations only starting at 5 p.m. At 9:30 the RJ Tao resident DJ begins and there’s a champagne toast at midnight. Free entry to the dance party for those 48
DECEMBER 19, 2012
ADVERTISING SUPPLEMENT TO ARKANSAS TIMES
Ring in 2013 with a sophisticated dinner at 1620 SAVOY.
with dinner reservations; $15 cover charge after 9:30 p.m. for the dance party only.
CLUB PARTY LITTLE ROCK ZOO #1 Zoo Drive www.littlerockzoo.com It’s the WILDEST party in town! Zoo Year’s Eve is back at Café Africa at the Little Rock Zoo from 8 p.m. to 12:30 a.m. Come dance the night away to the tunes of the Shannon Boshears Band and enjoy commentary by emcee Matt DeCample. Your $75 ticket includes everything – hats and noisemakers, hors d’oeuvres, wine, beer and champagne. Buy your tickets by midnight Dec. 25 and get two tickets for the price of one. Limit 2 discount tickets per transaction. Patron tickets are available for $125 and include a listing on table tents, thank you announcements throughout the event by the emcee and a listing/weblink on eblasts and the ZYE Facebook page. Online ticket sales close at 5 p.m. on December 31 however a limited number of tickets may be available at the door. Continued on page 55
Make reservations now for New Year’s Eve “Victorian Affair” Wine Dinner Dance - like - “Downton Abby” Known as one of the top events in Central Arkansas - join us for an evening of food, wine, dancing, entertainment and excitement Step back to December 31st, 1889, the Hornibrook family’s first new year in this magnificent mansion. The guests are arriving in their elegant attire. The food is all prepared. The music wafts throughout the house dressed in live greens and holiday finery. The laughter, excitement and anticipation are mounting with each minute that draws closer to midnight. The witching hour brings a champagne toast to “Auld Lang Syne”. Black Tie 8:00 p.m. until midnight, $225 per couple before December 26, $250 after. Seating is Limited “Don’t Drive” Romantic Getaways still available. Call now for reservations 501.374.7966 • www.theempress.com
An Exclusive N.Y.E. Event Rice Balls and Crab Cakes Served Family Style
Choice of: LENTIL SALAD WITH ARUGULA LUMP CRAB COCKTAIL
Choice of: BEEF CARPACCIO • SWORDFISH CARPACCIO LEMON SORBET
Choice of: BEEF TAGLIATA Roasted Beef Tenderloin served with Shitaki Mushroom Risotto LOBSTER FABRIZO Broiled Lobster served with Champaign Risotto
Family Style v egetaBleS
Choice of: PANETTONE BREAD PUDDING CHOCOLATE CREAM BRÛLÉE
RESERVE YOUR PLACE TO DRINK, DINE &
DANCE THIS NEW YEAR’S EVE 1620 Marke t St re e t Little Rock, AR 72 2 11 501 221 1620 | 16 2 0 SAVOY.COM
$100 P er P erson • o Ptional W ine P airing $40 l imited t o 100 g uests • r eservations r equired
1501 MERRILL DRIVE LITTLE ROCK, AR 72211 501.225.0500
Reservations Recommended Open Monday-Sunday For Dinner
Menu Available at
ADVERTISING SUPPLEMENT TO ARKANSAS TIMES
DECEMBER 19, 2012
Dining WHAT’S COOKIN’
LITTLE ROCK/N. LITTLE ROCK
1620 SAVOY The food is still highquality and painstakingly prepared — a wide-ranging dinner menu that’s sure to please almost everyone. 1620 Market St. Full bar, All CC. $$-$$$. 501-221-1620. D Mon.-Sat., BR Sun. ALL ABOARD RESTAURANT & GRILL Burgers, catfish, chicken tenders and such in this train-themed restaurant, where an elaborately engineered mini-locomotive delivers patrons meals. 6813 Cantrell Road. No alcohol. 501-975-7401. LD daily.
DECEMBER 19, 2012
2721 Kavanaugh Blvd. 663-1196 QUICK BITE In the mood for an after-dinner digestif? Head right next door to the Afterthought, the attached lounge that features a full bar, jazz music, and a dance floor. HOURS 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Monday through Friday, 5:30 p.m. to 9:30 or 10 p.m. Monday through Saturday, jazz brunch 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sunday. OTHER INFO All major credit cards. Full bar.
SUCCESS: Vieux Carre’s honey dijon chicken sandwich.
Vieux Carre hits the mark Nice atmosphere, reasonable prices, quality food.
aybe it’s our humble upbringing, but we’ve never felt comfortable in restaurants that couple a pricey menu with dining rooms so dark that we can’t get a good look at whatever it is that’s making us drop serious change. The folks at Vieux Carre in Hillcrest must harbor some similar sentiments, with a dining room that is just on the right side of pleasantly bright and large picture windows that let in the sunshine by day and give a nice view of Kavanaugh Boulevard at night. It’s a space that’s cozy without feeling cramped, and with a menu of fine food that features no item over $17 dollars, the self-described “Southern Bistro” remains one of our favorite places to dine for lunch and dinner both. The service is attentive and low-key, and while the restaurant could
BIG NEWS FOR FOODIES: The Capital Hotel has announced Chef Joel Antunes as executive chef, overseeing Ashley’s and the Capital Bar and Grill. Antunes won the James Beard Best Chef of the Southeast Award in 2005 for his work with his namesake restaurant in Atlanta. Back in the ’90s he helped London restaurant Les Saveurs win a Michelin star. So there is plenty of reason to hope that Little Rock has just landed a culinary star. The less-appetizing side of his bio: Antunes parlayed his success in Atlanta to a plum gig at the Oak Room in New York’s storied Plaza hotel and things did not go well. The New York Times gave it a onestar review, praising the service and atmosphere but, while calling Antunes talented, condemned the food as over-busy, overpriced and mediocre: “More than a few dishes were clumsily executed or vacuously luxurious. Seldom have I had so many black truffle shavings thrown at me to so little effect.” Antunes was canned after a less than a year. Since then he’s been at a few restaurants in London, where reviews have been more positive, though complaints that the food was good but overpriced have continued. One such critic called him “a cook in search of a restaurant,” so perhaps he’s found the right spot. One thing to watch: Antunes’s menus have tended to be heavily French. The managing partner of the Oak Room was quoted as saying, “I kept telling Joel to come up with more American dishes but he thought he was in Paris.” Antunes replaces Lee Richardson, who left last summer. Rumor is that Richardson may be working on new restaurant concepts in town.
UNIQUE: Black-eyed pea caviar.
easily flaunt itself as a stuffy, high-end place, the efforts at keeping prices low, quality high, and the atmosphere casual make it a fun place to eat. Choosing something from the extensive starter menu can be a challenge, with everything from crab cakes to bruschetta to tempt. An appetizer unique to Vieux Carre is the Black-eyed Pea Caviar ($7),
and it’s as fine a way to start as meal as we’ve found. The caviar is a cold salad of black-eyed peas, peppers, tomatoes and onions mixed together in a tangy dressing and served with toasted baguette slices. We weren’t too sure about the stuff at first bite, not being used to eating our peas cold, but a second bite won us over. Firm, tender peas gave way to a slight pepper bite, and the onions and tomatoes completed a flavor profile that we enjoyed more and more as we continued eating. We would have liked to turn the heat up on the peppers just a notch. Still, it was a fine start to our meal and a dish that sets Vieux Carre apart. We followed up the peas with a couple of sandwiches, and once again Vieux Carre made it hard to choose with items like a Reuben, a Hawaiian-style burger topped with pineapple and ham, and the decadentlooking Kavanaugh Club. We finally narrowed it down to two: the Honey Dijon Chicken ($8) and the Poppy’s Steak Sandwich ($10). Both sandwiches are served on soft, chewy ciabatta bread with a generous side of house-made potato chips — and these chips were so good that we wished we had ordered the appetizer featuring them with a Gorgonzola dip. It’s possible to substitute fries for a couple of dollars extra, but these well-made chips are a quite tasty and shouldn’t be missed. As for the sandwiches, both were excellent. The chicken sandwich featured two thin-pounded chicken cutlets that had been breaded and fried to a crisp golden brown, topped with Swiss and cheddar cheeses, lettuce, tomato, pickles and creamy honey mustard. Each bite was crisp and cheesy. Too many restaurants make the mistake of frying or grilling an entire chicken breast for their sandwich, resulting in rubbery chicken that is hard to eat; Vieux Carre’s thin cutlets were juicy and
Information in our restaurant capsules reflects the opinions of the newspaper staff and its reviewers. The newspaper accepts no advertising or other considerations in exchange for reviews, which are conducted anonymously. We invite the opinions of readers who think we are in error.
tender and very easy to handle. The steak sandwich was another success, with tender, thin-sliced ribeye steak holding up a pile of melted Swiss, lettuce and tomato. Unlike the sweet, mild mustard used on the chicken, this steak sandwich went with a bold, stone-ground mustard that accented the juicy beef without overpowering its flavor. Texture was again excellent, with no piece of steak sliced too thick, and no gristle or fat to be found throughout. It was a quality cut of meat prepared with skill and care, and while we would have liked the beef to be just a touch more rare, we still polished off the sandwich in record time. If sandwiches aren’t quite your thing, the Shrimp and Jalapeno Quesadilla ($8), a large flour tortilla filled with cheese, bacon, and shrimp and grilled to a crisp, is an option. The quesadilla is large and loaded with melted cheese, and there’s a definite spicy bite of peppers present. The rest of the ingredients don’t come through nearly as well, however, with no discernable flavor of bacon and a just a scattering of chopped shrimp. Still, coupled with a side of sour cream and the fresh tomato and onions served to the side, the quesadilla was good. Vieux Carre prides itself on creating New Orleans-inspired dishes, and one of the best is the Creamy Bowtie Pasta ($15), an ample portion of pasta served with blackened chicken, shrimp and a decadent cream sauce. We paired this dish with a bowl of smoky-flavored Red Beans and Rice ($4.50) for a trip to Creole heaven. Each piece of finely chopped chicken was well-seasoned and had just the right amount of char. The shrimp were (in contrast to the quesadilla’s) ample, and the pasta cooked just right — a perfect vehicle for the rich sauce. It’s one of the pricier dishes on the menu, but the large portion and abundance of good flavors make it worth the cost. Kavanaugh Boulevard is a street that is lined with some of Little Rock’s best restaurants, and it can be difficult sometimes for one to stand out from the crowd. Vieux Carre does this by hitting the sweet spot of good quality, well-prepared food for a price that other restaurants of its caliber can’t match. The menu is simple, but skillfully executed, and while some items are similar to those on menus in other South Louisiana-inspired kitchens, there are enough unique touches here to make what might seem commonplace at first glance special.
B Breakfast L Lunch D Dinner $ Inexpensive (under $8/person) $$ Moderate ($8-$20/person) $$$ Expensive (over $20/person) CC Accepts credit cards
Check out the Times’ food blog, Eat Arkansas arktimes.com
ALLEY OOPS Plate lunches, burgers and homemade desserts. Remarkable Chess Pie. 11900 Kanis Road. Full bar, All CC. $-$$. 501-221-9400. LD Mon.-Sat. BR Sun. B-SIDE This little breakfast place offers French toast wrapped in bacon on a stick, a must-have dish called “biscuit mountain” and beignets with lemon curd. 11121 Rodney Parham Road. Full bar, All CC. $$. 501-716-2700. BL Wed.-Sun. BAR LOUIE This chain’s first Arkansas outlet features a something-for-everybody menu so broad and varied to be almost schizophrenic. 11525 Cantrell Road, Suite 924. Full bar, All CC. $$-$$$. 501-228-0444. LD daily. 11525 Cantrell Road. 501-228-0444. BIG WHISKEY’S AMERICAN BAR AND
GRILL A modern grill pub with 30 flat screen TVs, whiskey on tap, plus boneless wings, burgers, steaks, soups and salads. 225 E Markham St. Full bar, All CC. $$. 501-324-2449. LD daily. BOBBY’S COUNTRY COOKIN’ Some of the best fried chicken and pot roast around, a changing daily casserole and wonderful homemade pies. 301 N. Shackleford Road, Suite E1. No alcohol, All CC. $-$$. 501-2249500. L Mon.-Fri. BOGIE’S BAR AND GRILL A menu filled with burgers, salads and giant desserts, plus a few steak, fish and chicken main courses. 120 W. Pershing Blvd. NLR. Full bar, All CC. $$. 501-812-0019. D daily.
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BOOKENDS CAFE Serving coffee and pastries early and sandwiches, soups and salads available after 11 a.m. Cox Creative Center. No alcohol, All CC. $-$$. 501- 918-3091. BL Mon.-Sat. THE BOX Cheeseburgers and French fries are greasy and wonderful and not like their fastfood cousins. 1023 W. Seventh St. No alcohol, All CC. $-$$. 501-372-8735. L Mon.-Fri. BUFFALO GRILL A great crispy-off-the-griddle cheeseburger and hand-cut fries star. 1611 Rebsamen Park Road. Full bar, CC. $$. 501-2969535. LD daily. 400 N. Bowman Road. Full bar, Beer, All CC. $$. 501-224-0012. LD daily. CATFISH CITY AND BBQ GRILL Basic fried fish and sides, including green tomato pickles, and now with tasty ribs and sandwiches in beef, pork and sausage. 1817 S. University Ave. No alcohol, All CC. $-$$. 501-663-7224. LD Tue.-Sat. CHEERS Good burgers and sandwiches, vegetarian offerings and salads at lunch and fish specials, and good steaks in the evening. 2010 N. Van Buren. Full bar, All CC. $$-$$$. 501-6635937. LD Mon.-Sat. 1901 Club Manor Drive. Maumelle. Full bar, All CC. 501-851-6200. LD daily, BR Sun. CHICKEN KING Arguably Central Arkansas’s best wings. 5213 W 65th St. No alcohol, All CC. $-$$. 501-562-5573. LD Mon.-Sat. CHICKEN WANG’S CAFE Regular, barbecue, spicy, lemon, garlic pepper, honey mustard and Buffalo wings. Open late. 8320 Colonel Glenn Road. No alcohol, All CC. $-$$. 501-562-1303. LD Mon.-Sat. CORNERSTONE PUB & GRILL A sandwich, pizza and beer joint in the heart of North Little Rock’s Argenta district. 314 Main St. NLR. Full bar, All CC. $-$$. 501-374-1782. LD Mon.-Sat. DAVE AND RAY’S DOWNTOWN DINER Breakfast buffet daily featuring biscuits and gravy, home fries, sausage and made-toorder omelets. Lunch buffet with four choices of meats and eight veggies. 824 W. Capitol Ave. No alcohol. $. 501-372-8816. BL Mon.-Fri. DAVID’S BUTCHER BOY BURGERS Serious hamburgers, steak salads, homemade custard. 101 S. Bowman Road. No alcohol, All CC. $-$$. 501-227-8333. LD Mon.-Sat. DOGTOWN COFFEE AND COOKERY An up-to-date sandwich, salad and fancy coffee kind of place, well worth a visit. 6725 John F. Kennedy Blvd. NLR. No alcohol, All CC. $-$$. 501-833-3850. BL Mon.-Sun., BLD Fri.-Sat.,. E’S BISTRO Try the heaping grilled salmon BLT on a buttery croissant. 3812 JFK Boulevard. NLR. No alcohol, All CC. $$. 501-771-6900. FLIGHT DECK A not-your-typical daily lunch special highlights this spot, which also features inventive sandwiches, salads and a popular burger. Central Flying Service at Adams Field. Beer, Wine, All CC. $-$$. 501-975-9315. BL Mon.-Sat. HILLCREST ARTISAN MEATS A fancy charcuterie and butcher shop with excellent daily soup and sandwich specials. 2807 Kavanaugh Blvd. Suite B. No alcohol, All CC. $$-$$$. 501-671-6328. L Mon.-Sat. THE HOP DINER Incarnation of the old dairy bar, with excellent burgers, onion rings, shakes, daily specials and breakfast. 201 E. Markham. No alcohol, All CC. $-$$. 501-244-0975. CONTINUED ON PAGE 52
DECEMBER 19, 2012
DINING CAPSULES, CONT.
EDITED BY WILL SHORTZ
A CROS S
informally of “Married … With Children” What a clock checker might want to know, in brief Jazzman Chick Science suffix Chit Aid for skipping out of school? Physics unit What opens and closes safes? “Try ___” “If only” Susan of “The Partridge Family” Sharp- edged plant growth? Blabber’s opposite Connect with Dutifully reverent
6 Katey 11
14 15 16 17 19 20
21 22 24
25 28 30 31
ANSWER S A B E R
A B A C I
A B B O T
B A Y L E A N A V D O M E O N U S G E S S T E E S M T E T R A T E I N S E
34 38 40 42 43 45
Actress Suvari, co-star of “American Pie” “Jeepers!” Herbal drink Allies of the Cheyenne Emphatic Spanish assent Rockets’ paths 1950s coup victim Opera ___ Did 80, say Shipment of noisemakers, e.g. ? Running back’s stat: Abbr. “You win” Novelist Morrison One shooting the breeze? “___ your lip!” Area of town where the supernatural hang out? Final letter
65 66 67 68 69
Up to Auto-racing family name Y : Spanish :: ___ : English Daft First Top 40 hit for Weird Al Yankovic
a massage, say 2 State animal of 48 Maine 49 3 Prisoners who write tediously? 4 Reggae’s 53 ___-A- Mouse 5 A previous time 56 6 “Same goes for 57 me” 7 Spaghetti 58 specification 8 Mount Olympus 59 dweller 60 9 Bio figure 10 Apollo, for one, musically speaking 64 11 Children’s song refrain TO PREVIOUS PUZZLE 12 Arms flank it T W O D A U N T S 13 Zero E B A N A D R O I T 18 Tapestrymaking device T A L K B R I D E S 23 Shout of E D E B B I E exuberance R O Y A L F L U S H C E L E T P T A 26 “Tony n’ ___ Wedding” Y S E A L S S T U N D S M A T H O N G 27 Wine bottle datum S K Y D I V I N G 29 Minstrels, often G I E R A E L D R U M S L A N A 31 U.K. V.I.P.’s I E S T A A D R E P 32 First Super Bowl that was N A T H E B L U E S actually called D R E R A S A B L E a Super Bowl A M R E T W A Y S 33 Santa ___ 46
Puzzle by JOE DIPIETRO
35 36 37 39 41 44
Robust religious observance? Old unit of conductance In the distance Dodge bullet dodger Sewn- on decoration Traditional family vacation
47 48 49
50 51 52
Quite the looker D.C. 100: Abbr. Something delivered in a box Not native Cordoned (off) With faux shyness
Words before ask or suggest
Comic strip canine
“I’ll take that as ___”
For answers, call 1-900-285-5656, $1.49 a minute; or, with a credit card, 1-800-814-5554. Annual subscriptions are available for the best of Sunday crosswords from the last 50 years: 1-888-7-ACROSS. AT&T users: Text NYTX to 386 to download puzzles, or visit nytimes.com/mobilexword for more information. Online subscriptions: Today’s puzzle and more than 2,000 past puzzles, nytimes.com/crosswords ($39.95 a year). Share tips: nytimes.com/wordplay. Crosswords for young solvers: nytimes.com/learning/xwords.
THIS MODERN WORLD
JASON’S DELI A huge selection of sandwiches, salads and spuds, as well as red beans and rice and chicken pot pie. Plus a large selection of heart healthy and light dishes. 301 N. Shackleford Road. No alcohol, All CC. $-$$. 501-954-8700. BLD daily. JIMMY JOHN’S GOURMET SANDWICHES Illinois-based sandwich chain that doesn’t skimp on what’s between the buns. 4120 E. McCain Blvd. NLR. No alcohol, All CC. $-$$. 501-945-9500. LD daily. 700 South Broadway St. No alcohol, All CC. $-$$. 501-372-1600. LD daily. KITCHEN EXPRESS Delicious “meat and three” restaurant offering big servings of homemade soul food. 4600 Asher Ave. No alcohol, All CC. $-$$. 501-666-3500. BLD Mon.-Sat., LD Sun. LASSIS INN One of the state’s oldest restaurants still in the same location and one of the best for catfish and buffalo fish. 518 E 27th St. Beer, Wine, All CC. $$. 501-372-8714. LD Tue.-Sat. MADDIE’S PLACE If you like your catfish breaded Cajun-style, your grits rich with garlic and cream and your oysters fried up in perfect puffs, this eatery is the place for you. 1615 Rebsamen Park Road. Full bar, All CC. $$-$$$. 501-660-4040. LD Tue.-Sat. MARIE’S MILFORD TRACK II Healthy and tasty are the key words at this deli/grill, featuring hot entrees, soups, sandwiches, salads and killer desserts. 9813 W Markham St. No alcohol, All CC. $-$$. 501-225-4500. BL Mon.-Sat. MASON’S DELI AND GRILL Heaven for those who believe everything is better with sauerkraut on top. The Bavarian Reuben is among the best we’ve had in town. 400 Clinton Ave. No alcohol, All CC. $-$$. 501-3763354. LD Mon.-Sat. NEWK’S EXPRESS CAFE Gourmet sandwiches, salads and pizzas. 4317 Warden Road. NLR. Beer, All CC. $-$$. 501-753-8826. LD daily. PACKET HOUSE GRILL An up-to-date take on sophisticated Southern cuisine served up in a stunning environment that dresses up the historic house with a modern, comfortable feel. 1406 Cantrell Road. Full bar, All CC. $$-$$$. 501-372-1578. D Tue.-Sat. PHIL’S HAM AND TURKEY PLACE Fine hams, turkeys and other specialty meats served whole, by the pound or in sandwich form. 11121 N. Rodney Parham Road. No alcohol, All CC. $-$$. 501-225-2136. LD Mon.-Fri. L Sat. SIMPLY NAJIYYAH’S FISHBOAT & MORE Good catfish and corn fritters. 1717 Wright Ave. No alcohol, All CC. $-$$. 501-562-3474. LD Tue.-Sat. SLICK’S SANDWICH SHOP & DELI Meat-and-two plate lunches in state office building. 101 E. Capitol Ave. No alcohol. 501-375-3420. BL Mon.-Fri. SPECTATORS GRILL AND PUB Burgers, soups, salads and other beer food, plus live music on weekends. 1012 W. 34th St. NLR. Full bar, All CC. $-$$. 501-791-0990. LD Mon.-Sat. SPORTS PAGE One of the largest, juiciest, most flavorful burgers in town. Grilled turkey and hot cheese on sourdough gets praise, too. 414 Louisiana St. Beer, Wine, All CC. $-$$. 501-372-9316. LD Mon.-Fri. STARVING ARTIST CAFE All kinds of crepes, served as entrees or as dessert. The Black Forest ham sandwich is a perennial favorite with the lunch crowd. Dinner menu changes daily, good wine list. 411 N. Main St. NLR. Full bar, All CC. $$. 501-372-7976. L Tue.-Sat., D Tue., Fri.-Sat. SUFFICIENT GROUNDS Great coffee, good bagels and pastries, and a limited lunch menu. 124 W. Capitol. No alcohol, CC. $. 501-372-1009. BL Mon.-Fri. SUGIE’S Catfish and all the trimmings. 4729 Baseline Road. No alcohol, All CC. $. 501-570-0414. LD daily. THE TAVERN SPORTS GRILL Burgers, barbecue and more. 17815 Chenal Parkway. Full bar, All CC. $-$$. 501-830-2100. LD daily. TROPICAL SMOOTHIE CAFE Smoothies, sandwiches and salads. 10221 N. Rodney Parham Road. No alcohol, All CC. $$. 501-224-2233. BLD daily; 400 President Clinton Ave. No alcohol, All CC. $-$$. 501-786-6555. L Mon.-Sat.; 524 Broadway St. No alcohol, All CC. $-$$. 246-3145. BLD Mon.-Fri. (closes at 6 p.m.) 10221 N. Rodney Parham Road. No alcohol, All CC. $$. 501-224-2233. BLD daily 12911 Cantrell Road. No alcohol, All CC. $$. 501-376-2233. BLD daily 400 President Clinton Ave. No alcohol, All CC. $-$$. 501-786-6555. L Mon.-Sat. UNIVERSITY MARKET @ 4CORNERS A food truck court where local vendors park daily. Check facebook.com/4cornersmarket to see what carts are scheduled to be parked. 6221 Colonel Glenn Road. CC. $-$$. 501-515-1661. LD daily. VICTORIAN GARDEN We’ve found the fare quite tasty and somewhat daring and different with its healthy, balanced entrees and crepes. 4801 North Hills Blvd. NLR. $-$$. 501-758-4299. L Tue.-Sat. WAYNE’S FISH & BURGERS TO GO Offers generously-portioned soulfood plate lunches and dinners — meat, two sides, corn bread — for $6. 2221 South Cedar St. 501-663-9901. WHITE WATER TAVERN Excellent, locally-sourced bar food. 2500 W 7th St. Full bar, All CC. $-$$. 501-375-8400. D Tue.-Sat.
BENIHANA JAPANESE STEAKHOUSE Enjoy the cooking show, make sure you get a little filet with your meal, and do plenty of dunking in that fabulous ginger sauce. 2 Riverfront Place. NLR. Full bar, All CC. $$-$$$. 501-374-8081. BLD Sun.-Sat.
DECEMBER 19, 2012
DINING CAPSULES, CONT. CHI DIMSUM & BISTRO A huge menu spans the Chinese provinces and offers a few twists on the usual local offerings. 6 Shackleford Drive. Full bar, All CC. $$-$$$. 501-221-7737. LD daily. 17200 Chenal Parkway. No alcohol, All CC. $$-$$$. 501-821-8000. LD Mon.-Sat., D Sun. FAR EAST ASIAN CUISINE Old favorites such as orange beef or chicken and Hunan green beans are prepared with care. 11610 Pleasant Ridge Road. Full bar, All CC. $$. 501-219-9399. LD daily. FORBIDDEN GARDEN Classic, Americanized Chinese food in a modern setting. 14810 Cantrell Road. Beer, Wine, All CC. $-$$. 501-868-8149. LD daily. FU LIN Quality in the made-to-order entrees is high, as is the quantity. 200 N. Bowman Road. Full bar, All CC. $$. 501-225-8989. LD daily, BR Sun. IGIBON JAPANESE RESTAURANT It’s a complex place, where the food is almost always good and the ambiance and service never fail to please. 11121 N. Rodney Parham Road. Beer, Wine, All CC. $$. 501-217-8888. LD Mon.-Sat. KIYEN’S SEAFOOD STEAK AND SUSHI Sushi, steak and other Japanese fare. 17200 Chenal Pkwy, Suite 100. Full bar, All CC. $$-$$$. 501-821-7272. LD daily. KOBE JAPANESE STEAKHOUSE & SUSHI Stands taller in its sushi offerings than at the grill. 11401 Financial Centre Parkway. Full bar, All CC. $$-$$$. 501-225-5999. L Mon.-Sat. D daily. NEW FUN REE Reliable staples, plenty of hot and spicy options and dependable delivery. 418 W 7th St. No alcohol, All CC. $. 501-6646657. LD Mon.-Sat. VAN LANG CUISINE Terrific Vietnamese cuisine. Great prices, too. 3600 S. University Ave. No alcohol, All CC. $-$$. 501-570-7700. LD daily.
CAPITOL SMOKEHOUSE AND GRILL Beef, pork and chicken, all smoked to melting tenderness and doused with a choice of sauces. 915 W. Capitol Ave. No alcohol, All CC. $-$$. 501-372-4227. L Mon.-Fri. CROSS EYED PIG BBQ COMPANY Traditional barbecue favorites smoked well such as pork ribs, beef brisket and smoked chicken. 1701 Rebsamen Park Road. Full bar, All CC. $-$$. 501-265-0000. L Mon.-Sat., D Tue.-Fri. 1701 Rebsamen Park Road. Beer, Wine, All CC. $-$$. 501-227-7427. LD daily. FATBOY’S KILLER BAR-B-Q This Landmark neighborhood strip center restaurant in the far southern reaches of Pulaski County features tender ribs and pork by a contest pitmaster. 14611 Arch Street. No alcohol, All CC. $$. 501-888-4998. L Mon.-Wed. and Fri.; L Thu. HB’S BBQ Great slabs of meat with fiery barbecue sauce, but ribs are served on Tuesday only. 6010 Lancaster. No alcohol, No CC. $-$$. 501-565-1930. LD Mon.-Fri. MICK’S BBQ, CATFISH AND GRILL Good burgers, picnic-worthy deviled eggs and heaping barbecue sandwiches topped with sweet sauce. 3609 MacArthur Dr. NLR. No alcohol, All CC. $-$$. 501-791-2773. LD Mon.-Sun. SIMS BAR-B-QUE Great spare ribs, sandwiches, beef, half and whole chicken and an addictive vinegar-mustard-brown sugar sauce. 2415 Broadway. Beer, CC. $-$$. 501-372-6868. LD Mon.-Sat. 1307 John Barrow Road. Beer, All CC. $-$$. 501-2242057. LD Mon.-Sat. 7601 Geyer Springs Road. Beer, All CC. $$. 501-562-8844. LD
EUROPEAN / ETHNIC
ALI BABA A Middle Eastern restaurant and grocery. 3400 S University Ave. No alcohol, All CC. 501-570-0577. LD Mon.-Sat. KHALIL’S PUB Widely varied menu with European, Mexican and American influences. 110 S. Shackleford Road. Full bar, All CC. $$. 501-224-0224. LD daily. BR Sun. THE PANTRY The menu stays relatively true to Czechoslovakian roots, but there’s plenty of choices to suit all tastes. 11401 Rodney Parham Road. Full bar, All CC. $$-$$$. 501-353-1875. LD Mon.-Fri., D Sat. STAR OF INDIA The best Indian restaurant in the region, with a unique buffet at lunch and some fabulous dishes at night. 301 N. Shackleford. Beer, Wine, All CC. $$. 501-2279900. LD daily. TASTE OF ASIA Delicious Indian food in a pleasant atmosphere. Perhaps the best samosas in town. 2629 Lakewood Village Dr. NLR. Full bar, All CC. $$-$$$. 501-812-4665. LD daily.
DAMGOODE PIES A somewhat different Italian/pizza place, largely because of a spicy garlic white sauce that’s offered as an alternative to the traditional red sauce. 2701 Kavanaugh Blvd. Beer, Wine, All CC. $$-$$$. 501-664-2239. LD daily. 6706 Cantrell Road. Beer, Wine, All CC. $$-$$$. 501-664-2239. LD daily. 10720 Rodney Parham Road. Beer, Wine, All CC. $$-$$$. 501-664-2239. LD daily. 37 East Center St. Fayetteville. Full bar, All CC. $$-$$$. 479-444-7437. LD daily. GUSANO’S They make the tomatoey Chicago-style deep-dish pizza the way it’s done in the Windy City. 313 President Clinton Ave. Full bar, All CC. $-$$. 501-374-1441. LD daily. 2915 Dave Ward Drive. Conway. Full bar, All CC. $$. 501-329-1100. LD daily. LARRY’S PIZZA The buffet is the way to go — fresh, hot pizza, fully loaded with ingredients, brought hot to your table, all for a low price. 1122 S. Center. No alcohol, All CC. $-$$. 501-224-8804. LD daily. 12911 Cantrell Road. No alcohol, All CC. $-$$. 501-2248804. LD daily. NYPD PIZZA Plenty of tasty choices. Even the personal pizzas come in impressive combinations, and baked ziti, salads are more also are available. Cheap slice specials at lunch. 6015 Chenonceau Blvd., Suite 1. Beer, Wine, All CC. $-$$. 501-868-3911. LD Mon.-Sat., D Sun. VESUVIO Arguably Little Rock’s best Italian restaurant is in one of the most unlikely places – tucked inside the Best Western Governor’s Inn. 1501 Merrill Drive. Full bar, All CC. $$$. 501-225-0500. D daily.
CASA MANANA Great guacamole and garlic beans, superlative chips and salsa and a broad selection of fresh seafood. 6820 Cantrell Road. Full bar, All CC. $-$$. 501-280-9888. LD daily 18321 Cantrell Road. Full bar, All CC. $-$$. 501-868-8822. LD daily 400 President Clinton Ave. No alcohol, All CC. $-$$. BL Mon.-Sat. CASA MEXICANA Familiar Tex-Mex style items all shine, in ample portions. 6929 JFK Blvd. NLR. Full bar, All CC. $$. 501-835-7876. LD daily. LA HACIENDA Creative, fresh-tasting entrees and traditional favorites, all painstakingly prepared in a festive atmosphere. 3024 Cantrell Road. Full bar, All CC. $-$$. 501-661-0600. LD daily. 200 Highway 65 N.
Conway. All CC. $$. 501-327-6077. LD daily. LA VAQUERA One of the few trucks where you can order a combination plate that comes with rice, beans and lettuce. 4731 Baseline Road. No alcohol, No CC. $. 501-565-3108. LD Mon.-Sat. LAS PALMAS Mexican chain with a massive menu of choices. 10402 Stagecoach Road. Full bar, All CC. $-$$. 501-455-8500. LD daily. MERCADO SAN JOSE One of Little Rock’s best Mexican bakeries and a restaurant in back serving tortas and tacos for lunch. 7411 Geyer Springs Road. Beer, CC. $. 501-5654246. BLD daily. RIVIERA MAYA Typical Mexican fare for the area, though the portions are on the large side. 801 Fair Park Blvd. Full bar, All CC. $$. 501-663-4800. LD daily. SAN JOSE GROCERY STORE AND BAKERY The fresh flour tortillas, overstuffed burritos, sopes and chili poblano are the real things. 7411 Geyer Springs Road. Beer, CC. $-$$. 501-565-4246. BLD daily. SUPERMERCADO SIN FRONTERAS Shiny, large Mexican grocery with a bakery and restaurant attached. 4918 Baseline Road. Beer, All CC. $$. 501-562-4206. BLD daily. TAQUERIA JALISCO SAN JUAN Their chicken tamales make it worth a visit. They also have tortas, quesadillas and fajitas. 11200 Markham St. No alcohol, No CC. $. 501-541-5533. LD daily. TAQUERIA LOURDES This Chevy Step Van serves tacos, tortas, quesadillas and nachos. Colonel Glenn and 36th Street. No alcohol, No CC. $. 501-612-2120. LD Mon.-Sat. TAQUERIA SAMANTHA On Friday and Saturday nights, this mobile taqueria parks outside of Jose’s Club Latino in a parking lot on the corner of Third and Broadway. 300 Broadway Ave. No alcohol, No CC. $. D Fri.-Sat. (sporadic hours beyond that). TAQUERIA Y CARNICERIA GUADALAJARA Cheap, delicious tacos, tamales and more. Always bustling. 3811 Camp Robinson Road. NLR. Beer, All CC. $-$$. 501-753-9991. BLD daily.
Daily. MIKE’S PLACE Delicious New Orleansinspired steaks and seafood, plus wood-fired pizzas. 808 Front St. Conway. Full bar, All CC. $$-$$$. 501-269-6493. LD daily. SLIM CHICKEN’S OF CONWAY Chicken in all shapes and sizes with sauces. 550 Salem Road. Conway. All CC. $$-$$$. 501-450-7546. LD Mon.-Sun. SOMETHING BREWING CAFE Coffee, pastries, sandwiches and such dot the menu of this longtime Conway favorite. 1156 Front St. Conway. No alcohol, All CC. $-$$. 501-3275517. BLD Mon.-Sun.
THE BLEU MONKEY GRILL High end, artfully prepared pastas, salads, sandwiches and appetizers. 4263 Central Ave. Hot Springs. Full bar, All CC. 501-520-4800. LD daily. CAJUN BOILERS Expertly prepared boiled shrimp, crawfish and such, served in a fun atmosphere. 2806 Albert Pike. Hot Springs. Beer, Wine, All CC. $-$$. 501-767-5695. D Tue.-Sat. HOT SPRINGS BRAU HAUS All the usual schnitzels are available, an inviting bar awaits as you enter, and the brick-walled place has a lot of history and coziness. 801 Central Ave. Hot Springs. 501-624-7866. LD. JASON’S BURGERS AND MORE Locals love it for filets, fried shrimp, ribs, catfish, burgers and the like at good prices. 148 Amity Road. Hot Springs. 501-525-0919. LD. OHIO CLUB Great atmosphere and a standout burger highlight what claims to be the state’s oldest bar. 336 Central Ave. Hot Springs. Full bar, All CC. $-$$. 501-627-0702. LD daily. ROD’S PIZZA CELLAR Terrific handmade pizzas highlighted by the Godfather, a whopper. Lunch specials are a steal, especially the buffet. 3350 Central Ave. Hot Springs. Beer, Wine, All CC. $-$$. 501-321-2313. LD Tue.-Sun. TACO MAMA Fresh, creative, homemade Mexican treats created with a Southwest flair. The menu is not huge, but there’s not a dud in the bunch. Truly a treasure for Hot Springs. 1209 Malvern Ave. Hot Springs. Full bar, All CC. $-$$. 501-624-6262. LD Mon.-Sat.
PETIT BISTRO Haute cuisine in a little cobblestone house transformed into chic eatery outside Bentonville. 2702 N. Walton Blvd. Bentonville. Full bar, All CC. 479-464-9278. LD Mon.-Fri, D Sat.
SOUTHFORK GRILL Serves up sandwiches, burgers and plate dinners as well as appetizers and big desserts. 2797 Southfork Dr. Cabot. All CC. $$. (501) 941-7500. LD Mon.-Sat.
EL ACAPULCO Tex-Mex served in hefty portions in a colorful atmosphere. 201 Highway 65 N. Conway. No alcohol, All CC. $$. 501-327-8445. LD Mon.-Sun. FABY’S RESTAURANT Nuevo Mexican and Continental cuisine meet and shake hands at Faby’s. The hand-patted, housemade tortillas are worth the visit alone. 2915 Dave Ward. Conway. No alcohol, All CC. $-$$. 501-3295151. LD Mon.-Sun. LOS AMIGOS Authentic Mexican food where everything is as fresh and tasty as it is filling. 2850 Prince St. Conway. No alcohol, All CC. $-$$. 501-329-7919. LD daily. MARKETPLACE GRILL Big servings of steak, seafood, chicken, pasta, pizza and other rich comfort-style foods. 600 Skyline Dr. Conway. No alcohol, All CC. $$-$$$. 501-336-0011. LD
DEVITO’S You absolutely cannot go wrong with the trout here -- whether it’s the decadent Trout Italiano, the smoky Chargrilled Trout or the cornmeal encrusted Trout Fingers. 5 Center St. Eureka Springs. Full bar, All CC. $$-$$$. 479-253-6807. D. ERMILIO’S Great mix-and-match pasta and sauces, all done with fresh ingredients and creativity. 26 White St. Eureka Springs. 479-253-8806. LD. GASKINS’ CABIN Solid American food highlighted by the fish specials and prime rib. Highway 23 North. Eureka Springs. 479-2535466. D. MYRTIE MAE’S Hearty country breakfasts, sandwiches and Arkansas-style dinner plates. 207 W. Van Buren. Eureka Springs. No alcohol, All CC. $$. 479-253-9768. BLD.
A TASTE OF THAI Terrific Thai food, from the appetizers to the entrees to the desserts. Only the brave should venture into the “rated 5” hot sauce realm. 31 E. Center St. Fayetteville. All CC. $$-$$$. 479-251-1800. LD Mon.-Sat. HERMAN’S RIBHOUSE Filets, not ribs, are the big seller at this classic, friendly, dumpy spot. The barbecue chicken is another winner. 2901 N. College Ave. Fayetteville. 479-4429671.
DECEMBER 19, 2012
Unlucky ’13 lurks
etting the jump on unlucky ’13, I’ve worked up a list of New Years resolutions. Thought I’d go ahead and share them early, as the world is scheduled to end on Friday and I wouldn’t want them to go to waste. Like they won’t anyway. OK. Resolved: In 2013 I’m going to cut down considerably on the number of photo-ops, and, unless more interest is shown, I may cut them out completely. I’m going to contact the high-class wallpicture place over at Bentonville and ask them to get custody of the Christ of the Ozarks and move it over there where it’ll be appreciated by real art-lovers and not a bunch of old gays and former hippies. I’m not going to eat the liver of anything that used to be alive, even if I die that notquite-dead death that obliges you to come back as a zombie that doesn’t do anything but stagger around looking for raw deadpeople’s livers to eat, not even using utensils or braising them lightly in a trash-barrel fire. I’ll not be baling my own hay. I’m going to tell Scalia the next time I see him that I think he’s an insufferable prick. I’m going to stop making excuses for tomatoes. I won’t be taking up whittling or spinning yarns, which is what men my age used
to do to pass the time. This wasn’t artistic whittling. It was mainly whittling sharp points onto nondescript BOB sticks, like sharpLANCASTER ening leadless pencils. These sharpened sticks weren’t good for anything except very rarely to point the way back to the main road to strangers who stopped to ask directions. The yarns were sometimes pretty good, though. Men my age also used to futz a lot. I’ll not futz. I won’t be tumping outhouses on Halloween — a tradition that’s lost its luster somehow — and I’ll hire an off-duty deputy to guard mine. If I can find one who’ll work cheap. And won’t make off with my Sears & Roebuck catalogue. I’ve bulldogged my last steer. I’ve also busted my last sod. I’ll avoid tight, bouldery places where I might be drygulched by bushwhackers or bushwhacked by drygulchers, or plugged or winged by either galoots or sidewinders. I’m not going to piddle around as much. God didn’t put us here to piddle. I’ll not make brooms, or learn entertaining old-timer pee tricks, such as directing it through the rear window on one side
of an Airstream singlewide and out the window on the other side without a single drop moisting a bunk mattress or throw pillow inside. I’ll not yodel. Not competitively anyhow. That means I’ll not be participating in the big annual Yodel-Off at Bucksnort, which is sort of our parochial version of “American Idol” or “The X Factor.” But say la vee and sick transit Gloria Monday. I’ll not agree to disagree. I’d rather just have it out and be done with it. I’ll not rest on my laurels. Or I wouldn’t if I had any. I’ll not update. Obliging you to is just their way of keeping you on the hook. Neither will I be ordering or installing new apps, or whatever it is you order and install these days. Just something else to worry about. I’ll not garden in the moonlight naked. I’ll not lose my breath and pass out cold again from leaning over the midriff tallow to whack off a bunch of toenails that grow about an inch a night — to keep them from looking like Howard Hughes talons that have ripped up just about every pair of socks that I own. I’ll halloo a nervy pedicurist first. I’ll not be decking the halls with boughs of poison ivy. Again. Though the white berries did provide some nicely understated decorative contrast to the red ones of the plastic holly. At the height of tick season, I’ll be extra vigilant regarding otherwise inexplicable
fruit movement in the breakfast raisin-bran bowl. I’ll not prejudge the new legislature. It couldn’t be worse than, say, Michigan’s. Though it will surely try. If I hire any Turks as domestics with access to the household cutlery, I’ll take care to refer to the footstool in the study as a hassock and not an ottoman. I’ll not go over to the Mormon cosmogony. I mean, I don’t mind a little far-fetchedness in the metaphysic, but damn! I’ll not wear a bow tie that lights up and flashes to a funeral. Or anyhow not to the funeral of anybody I knew and cared about. There’s a redheaded deadbeat that owes me domino money whose funeral I would wear it to, though. I’m going to struggle with what I’ve got left against the notion, which gained considerable impetus in Connecticut just last week, that this is No Country for Old Men who have seen enough. I’ll not be blowing up any more beaver dams, especially that close to sensitive government installations. I’ll not go on any more swamp treks looking for ivorybill woodpeckers, as I have peckerwoods enough to deal with already. I’ll not labor for the master from the dawn till setting sun, as the old hymn, probably written by Simon Legree, advocates. I’ll not be standing my ground if the other sumbitch is intent on standing his and has a higher-caliber piece.
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Continued From Page 48 NEXT BISTRO AND BAR 2611 Kavanaugh Blvd. 663-6398 www.facebook.com/nextbistroandbar The newest Hillcrest hangout offers an assortment of tapas, dips, delicious salads and grilled sandwiches. Our full service bar features top shelf spirits, a very unique wine selection, and beers for every taste. This will be NEXT’s first NYE Party! We will feature DJ Spence RX until 2 a.m. and every patron will receive party favors and a complimentary flute of champagne. 7 p.m. -2 a.m., $5 cover. Cheers!
MISS KITTY’S 307 West 7th Street 374-4699 www.traxnlr.com Come celebrate NYE with Miss Kitty’s Black Masquerade Ball with performances by Brittney Paige, Chloe Jacobs, Montanna Reed, Tionne Iman, ChiChi Valdez, Akasha Adonis and more. Come with your own mask and receive drink specials all night. Masks will be available at the door for those without them. From 9 p.m. to 11 p.m., sign up for the following giveaways: two $25 Visa gift cards, a $50 Visa gift card, a Samsung digital camera bundle and a 32-inch LED
Vizio smart TV. You must be present to win, the drawings will be held after midnight. TRAX 415 Main St. 244.0444 www.traxnlr.com Trax is hosting its annual NYE Party with champagne fountains, drink specials, great music and lots of the bubbly to go around all night long. There will also be a post-New Year’s Breakfast Buffett at the end of the party. 610 CENTER 610 Center Street 374-4678 www.traxnlr.com Join 610 Center for Ciroc’in New Year’s Eve in Blù with specials on Ciroc Vodka drinks and party favors sponsored by Ciroc Ultra Premium Vodka.
PARTY AT HOME KREB’S BROTHERS RESTAURANT STORE 4310 Landers Rd., NLR 664-5233 www.krebsbrothers.com If you’re planning a house party, do what the pros do and head to
Kreb’s Brothers Restaurant Store. There, you can stock up on new wine, champagne and cocktail glasses. Set the scene with matching stemware, serving dishes, unique cheese plates and festive cocktail napkins. Also save some time by stocking up on easy-to-make dip mixes. LAKE LIQUOR 20710 Arkansas 365, Maumelle 851-9903 Lake Liquor is your one stop party shop for everything you need to make your New Year fun. With crazy store-wide sales, what more can you ask for in creating the perfect party at home. There are mixers, glasses and Robby’s Salsa so stop by and stock up for a festive affair.
NEXT DAY DETOX HAMPTON INN 320 River Market Ave. 244-0600 littlerockdowntownsuites.hamptoninn.com Looking for a safe, convenient place to stay after the festivities are done? “Have Fun, Be Safe, Stay in the River Market!” Call for Reservations.
FLOATING LOTUS 900 N. University Ave. 664-0172 www.floatinglotusyogastudio.com The Floating Lotus is a full service health and well-being facility. The count down for the New Year happens and each one of us makes a New Year resolution or resolutions to rid ourselves of the toxic baggage from the year before. We vow to change for the better. This can look a variety of different ways; riding ourselves of negative thoughts, the excess Holiday fluff, or a pledge to be more nurturing to our overall health and well being. This is where The Floating Lotus can help you be the best you can be both inside and out. Their massages help circulate lymphatic flow and encourage the oxygenation of your blood, releasing stored toxins as well as loosening tight muscles. The Aloe Vera Body Wrap is a detoxifying treatment that uses the natural healing properties of the aloe vera plant to expel excess water retention and harmful substances, while healing and nurturing the skin, creating a more toned appearance of the body. The Fire and Ice facial is a detox to your face. The ingredients in the hot masque promotes circulation which gives your face a beautiful glow, perfect to jump start a New Year skin care regimen.
www.arktimes.com 2012 55 ADVERTISING SUPPLEMENT TO ARKANSAS TIMES DECEMBERDecember 19, 2012 20,55
Published on Dec 19, 2012