Page 1

Back by Popular Demand

call today for vendor information!

SATURDAY, APRIL 14, 2018 NOW ACCEPTING VENDOR APPLICATIONS Brought to you by: War Memorial Stadium, the Arkansas Times, and Arkansas Made Magazine FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT RICK TILLEY AT 501.537.5224 OR ARKANSASMADEARKANSASPROUD@GMAIL.COM ArkansasMadeArkansasProudMarket


JANUARY 04, 2018


RIVERDALE 10 VIP CINEMA ARKANSAS’S SOURCE FOR NEWS, POLITICS & ENTERTAINMENT 201 East Markham Street, Suite 200 Little Rock, Arkansas 72201




oldarktimes W: E:

PUBLISHER Alan Leveritt EDITOR Lindsey Millar SENIOR EDITOR Max Brantley MANAGING EDITOR Leslie Newell Peacock CONTRIBUTING EDITOR Mara Leveritt

Follow us on Instagram: ArkTimes




R | 10:30 1:30 4:15 7:00 9:45 PG-13 | 10:30 1:15 4:00 6:45 9:30


Follow Arkansas Blog on Twitter: @ArkansasBlog

2600 CANTRELL RD 5 0 1 . 2 9 6.9 955 | R I V E R DA LE1 0.CO M


PG-13 | 11:00 2:00 4:20 7:15 9:30 PG-13 | 11:15 2:15 4:30 7:15 9:30


PG-13 | FRI-SUN 11:15 9:05 MON-THU 1:45 9:05

R | 10:45 1:45 4:20 6:45 9:20


PG-13 | 11:15 2:15 4:30 7:30 9:35 THE DARKEST HOUR PG-13 | 11:00 2:00 4:30 7:00 9:30 ALL THE MONEY IN THE WORLD JUMANJI: WELCOME PG-13 | 10:45 1:30 4:15 7:00 9:45





PG-13 | 11:00 2:00 4:30 7:00 9:30 PG | FRI-SUN 1:45 4:15 6:45 MON-THU 4:15 6:45


175ML 175ML 175ML 175ML 175ML 750ML 750ML 750ML 12PK

Every Day



$38.99 $28.99 $22.99 $58.99 $28.99 $28.99 $62.99 $13.99 $13.99






association of alternative newsmedia

A reminder from your friends at ArkansasTimes:









ARKANSAS TIMES (ISSN 0164-6273) is published each week by Arkansas Times Limited Partnership, 201 East Markham Street, Suite 200, Little Rock, Arkansas, 72201, phone (501) 375-2985. Periodical postage paid at Little Rock, Arkansas, and additional mailing offices. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to ARKANSAS TIMES, 201 EAST MARKHAM STREET, SUITE 200, Little Rock, AR, 72201. Subscription prices are $42 for one year, $74 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.


WOMEN’S MARCH ON ARKANSAS LITTLE ROCK, AR Saturday, January 20, 2018 Participate

Lineup begins at 11:00 am at the corner of West Capitol and South Pulaski in Little Rock. RSVP here:




Tweet of the week “Churchill was hated by his own party, opposition party, and press. Feared by King as reckless, and despised for his bluntness. But unlike Neville Chamberlain, he didn’t retreat. We had a Chamberlain for 8 yrs; in @realDonaldTrump we have a Churchill.” — Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee (@GovMikeHuckabee) comparing President Trump to Winston Churchill.


Gov says open carry legal

Governor Hutchinson has informed the Arkansas State Police that he believes a 2013 law made open carry of handguns the law of the land in Arkansas and they should act accordingly. There is, as yet, no definitive court case that substantiates this view of the law. Since its passage, a debate has raged over the law’s meaning. Some contended it was merely meant to be a technical correction to Arkansas law that long had allowed the carrying of weapons on a “journey,” but not in all circumstances. Gun advocates argued that the wording validated open carry. Critics have argued that such an expansive view might override some of the restrictions in law on where concealed weapons may be taken. Hutchinson’s opinion carries no force of law, but the directive to an executive agency will have the effect of guiding state troopers, as indicated by a notice sent to troopers by Col. Bill Bryant, director of the State Police. Hutch i n son a l so i n for me d prosecutors, through the state prosecutor coordinator’s office, of his belief that open carry of guns was legal in Arkansas. Though a number of prosecutors 4

JANUARY 04, 2018


hold a similar view, Pulaski County Prosecutor Larry Jegley of Little Rock said the governor’s letter doesn’t change anything. “The governor doesn’t articulate law enforcement policy,” Jegley said.

GOP gubernatorial primary

Jan Morgan, the Hot Springs gun range owner, announced her expected Republican candidacy for governor at a New Year’s Eve party in Hot Springs. She said people know politicians are “taxing them into poverty, regulating them out of business and enslaving them with government entitlements.”

Among other specific references: after she ran off some dark-skinned • She wants required roll call votes Hindus. She claimed they were acting in legislative committee, no voice strangely and were not banned on votes. account of their skin color. • She seems to want to put an end to corporate handouts of tax money, such as the governor’s quick-closing First Western Bank of Booneville fund, and specifically criticized bought three properties owned handouts to foreign companies by Sen. Jake Files (R-Fort Smith), • Taxes were cut in some places, including his Fort Smith home on but raised in others, she complained. Free Ferry Landing, at foreclosure The tax burden needs to be reduced, sales to satisfy unpaid loans of $2.1 she said. And, of course, it can be million. The bank bid $2.048 million, done without a loss of vital services the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette by cutting “waste.” reported. • She suggested the Arkansas Files potentially faces bigger adoption of Medicaid expansion had problems related to how tax money made insurance more expensive and sent his way to build a local sports harder to get. “Socialized medicine,” complex was spent. The FBI has been she calls it. The best government investigating. Files is not seeking intervention in health care is none, re-election. she said. The Booneville bank won priority • “Arkansas is a constitutional on the properties against a long list carry state,” she s a i d . of people seeking money from Files, She’s also said she was a “born- including other banks, the Arkansas again Christian” and “genetically Development Finance Authority and conservative” and, among other firms that had done business with attributes, she said, “I ride my Files’ construction company. Files own Harley.” She won early fame also was on the losing end of a $1.8 for banning Muslims from her gun million foreclosure judgment in an range, a policy that came to light apartment project.

Files foreclosed on


A fresh start


or much of my adult life, I’ve tried to eat black-eyed peas and greens every New Year’s Day, worrying that if I didn’t, the year would be just awful. I’ve made resolutions. I’ve sworn off fast food. I’ve pledged to go to the gym three times a week. Out with the old. In with the new. It never works. This year, after getting sick during a postChristmas trip to Branson, I stayed home while the rest of my family participated in New Year’s festivities with extended family. Instead of fretting over missed traditions, I napped and ate frozen pizza. You know what? It felt great. Sometimes traditions do more harm than good. Sometimes trying to get a new start puts us back in the same old rut. As we enter 2018, I have a list of things we collectively need to leave behind in 2017. At the top of the list is the way we fall for the same old tired promise from politicians that they are the only person for the job and that we just cannot move forward without his or her (usually

his) guidance. This attitude has led to the smug paternalism that is prevalent in today’s politics. AUTUMN When I was TOLBERT young, a beloved aunt and uncle often took me to the state Capitol during my summer visits to Little Rock. It was all so fancy, with the marble staircases and gold letterboxes and bronze doors. It was a place of wisdom and knowledge. So I thought. Either way, like many kids, I’m sure, each visit had me more and more convinced that only the smartest and most benevolent walked through those doors as public servants. As an adult, I’ve found that those are certainly not the traits that get most people to our capitol or any capitol, for that matter. Confidence. Bravado. Fundraising. Self-importance. Dunning-Kruger Effect. These all seem to pave the

Undoing America


he U.S. Department of Labor will tell owners of restaurants and other businesses this month that they can keep the tips that customers leave for waiters and other service workers. In the past — before 2017 — you would have expected anger from every quarter if the government invoked a rule that took money out of the pockets of some of the country’s hardest-working and poorest laborers and gave it to their bosses. The United States became the world’s biggest tipping economy because people knew that waiters and waitresses were often exempt from wage-and-hour rules and largely depended on tips for their livelihoods. But cheers are in order at such moments now. This year began like last year, with promises from the Trump administration to lift the heavy hand of government from businesses and turn them loose to harvest bigger profits. Business deregulation was President Trump’s one achievement in his first year. Now you can add the law giving deep tax cuts and new tax loopholes to corporations, other businessmen, rich heirs and others with high incomes. No president has undone so many government rules that were set up, by

Republican and Democratic presidents and congresses alike, to protect workers, consumers, the ERNEST environment and DUMAS ordinary citizens from the perils of untrammeled commerce. By New Year, his administration had begun to unwind 67 business rules adopted under previous administrations. That doesn’t count scores of bills by Republican members of Congress that would roll back laws or parts of them that were enacted over the past 45 years restricting industries in some way, mostly affecting the environment. Richard Mason, an El Dorado businessman who writes a column for the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, roared against one of them Sunday: a bill by South Arkansas U.S. Rep. Bruce Westerman that would shut down public input and give the timber and paper industry that put him in Congress easier and more profitable access to national forests and other public lands. Other Republican members of Congress are herding bills to undo the Endangered Species Act, a goal of Trump. Nearly all the business restrictions

way for too many politicians these days. There is no convincing Womack or Cot“Elect me,” they say. “I can solve your ton, or Collins for that matter, that any problems.” But that just is not the case. way but their way is worth pursuing. Somewhere we lost the truth that the Instead, I’ll spend my energy on helping men and women in the legislature or in men and women candidates, especially Congress are really just ordinary peo- women candidates, get elected who are ple who are there to represent our best running not because they feel like they interests while we work and take care have all the answers, but because they of our families. Somehow, many of our want to find the best path forward for politicians have come to believe that by and with their communities. Candidates merely being politicians, they possess an who, instead of talking at us, talk to us. inherent wisdom that their constituents Instead of hiding behind telephone town do not. This is glaringly obvious if you’ve halls, NRA-funded studies and meet and ever been on the receiving end of a form greets only accessible by ferry boats, they letter from U.S. Rep. Steve Womack or come home to their district every chance U.S. Sen. Tom Cotton after expressing a they get and really listen to the people concern about health care, net neutrality they claim to represent. or tax reform. It’s something I’ve heard 2018 is a new start. We have a chance over and over from the women in my for a clean slate in many districts. We can district who tried to talk to state Rep. end the ridiculous tradition of “politiCharlie Collins (R-Fayetteville) about cian knows best.” We can fill our city guns on campus. Smug paternalism. And halls and legislatures with men and we stood by and let it get this way. women who mean it when they say they This year, I’m through writing let- want to help. ters and making phone calls to people And if all of this works, next year, I who don’t give a flip about what I have will again abandon my traditions on New to say. A phone call on behalf of a candi- Year’s Day and, instead of black-eyed date to a voter will go a lot further than peas and greens, I may just treat myself another call to a congressional staffer. to a movie and some nachos.

that Trump and many in his party inveigh against had their origins under President Richard Nixon, with primary support from congressional Republicans: the Clean Air Act, Clean Water Act, Occupational Safety and Health Administration, Council on Environmental Quality and Endangered Species Act. A scientist whom Nixon recruited to write and help pass the endangered species rules recalled that he had asked Nixon’s chief of staff if he could work with congressional Democrats to get it passed and the Nixon aide said he could as long as he never got his picture in The Washington Post with Democrats. They wanted to keep it a Republican triumph. Now it is a Republican triumph to undo it all. All those laws were enacted as a result of a national clamor for the government to do something about the pollution that people saw killing their forests and streams (like the death valleys that marked nearly every creek along my childhood road), fouling the air for their children and causing death and disability in dangerous workplaces. The passage of OSHA, the workersafety law, started the cry from industry that government was taking away American freedoms by telling businesses how to run their workplaces. What is shocking about the Labor Department’s plan to turn tips over

to the owner is that it is a transparent attempt to advance the interests of business at the expense of workers and consumers, although the agency says companies could, if they chose, redistribute the tips among their workers. But nearly all the regulations and laws that Trump and his congressional allies are scuttling are just as transparent. Trump withdrew the U.S. from the global-warming treaty, a profitable victory for the fossil-fuels industry. He is abolishing net neutrality, which allows AT&T, Comcast and Verizon to pick and choose who gets to sell their services on the internet and at discriminatory rates. Last week, the administration set out to roll back the safety rules imposed by the Obama administration on offshore oil drilling that aimed to prevent a repeat of the Deepwater Horizon disaster that killed a dozen people and billions of sea creatures in the Gulf of Mexico. A Trump official said it would save oil companies $900 million over 10 years. They will take their chances on another disaster. Also last week, they planned to stop government agencies from imposing restraints on oil and gas fracking, which is poisoning water supplies and causing earthquakes. They are undoing Obama rules that stopped mining companies from dumping poisonous debris in streams. They are … well, just watch the paper.

Follow Arkansas Blog on Twitter: @ArkansasBlog JANUARY 04, 2018


Hillary done it BARD BALL 2018 Lose yourself at the theatre Lose yourself at Bard Ball 2018 as we raise a toast to AST’s 12th season. Join emcee CHAD BRADFORD for an evening of magic and mystery: • Special performance by AST alum MICHELLE ALVES, “Anita” in our 2016 production of West Side Story and most recently seen on Broadway in the musical hit On Your Feet! • Heavy hors-d’oeuvres and complimentary drinks • Live and silent auctions BUY TICKETS AT ARKSHAKES.COM $75 a ticket/$800 per table of 10 COCKTAIL ATTIRE For more information, contact Geneva Galloway at 501-852-8223 or



Save the date for the first annual


ARKANSAS MUSIC AWARDS 7 p.m. Jan. 23, Ron Robinson Theater Presented by the Arkansas Times and Arkansas Sounds (a project of the Butler

Center for Arkansas Studies, a department of the Central Arkansas Library System). Learn more at


JANUARY 04, 2018



own at the courthouse, the kind of story President Trump is peddling is laughingly called the someother-dude-done-it defense. Among the president’s 23 (!) separate denials that his presidential campaign “colluded” with Russia during the 2016 presidential campaign during a halfhour New York Times interview was this preposterous line: “I actually think it’s turning to the Democrats because there was collusion on behalf of the Democrats. There was collusion with the Russians and the Democrats. A lot of collusion … starting with the dossier.” The other dude, in Trump’s addled mind, being “Crooked Hillary.” She’s the one that conspired with Vladimir Putin! You see, deep thinkers on the right have been arguing that it was a partially unverified report written by former British intelligence operative Christopher Steele that first convinced the FBI to open a counterintelligence investigation of Trump’s dalliance with the Kremlin. And since the Democrats (taking over from anti-Trump Republicans) had partly paid for the so-called “dodgy dossier,” the entire Russia probe amounted to nothing more than a “deep state” dirty trick. Because, as everybody knows, investigating a crime is exactly the same thing as committing one — an absurdly circular argument that would render law enforcement impossible. Which, in the case of Trump and the Russians, is exactly what’s intended. To Trumpists, “deep state” refers to anybody and everybody in the U.S. government whose first loyalty is to the Constitution rather than to Donald J. Trump. Just ask around at your friendly, neighborhood penitentiary. Maybe half the inmates will assure you that an unholy conspiracy among cops, prosecutors and lying witnesses is what put them there. Once in a blue moon, it’s even true. But I digress. Some fervid Trumpists even began to talk about a “purge” of the FBI — language no American should use. So somebody decided to set the record straight. The New York Times delivered itself of a New Year’s Eve blockbuster. See, it turns out that it wasn’t the Steele dossier that caused the FBI to open an investigation of the Trump campaign in the summer of 2016 at all.

“Instead,” the Times revealed, “it was firsthand information from one of America’s closest intelligence allies.” Specifically, Australia. “During a night of heavy drinking at an upscale London bar in May 2016, George Papadopoulos, a young foreign policy adviser to the Trump GENE campaign, made LYONS a startling re ve l a t i o n t o Australia’s top diplomat in Britain: Russia had political dirt on Hillary Clinton” in the form of stolen emails. “I can speak from experience,” my pal Charles Pierce has written. “Drinking with Aussies is not for rookies.” Certainly not in Papadopoulos’ case. At first, the Australians didn’t know what to believe. But two months later, as stolen DNC emails embarrassing to the Clinton campaign began to appear on Wikileaks, the Australians took what they knew to the FBI: At some level, the Trump campaign was in cahoots with the Kremlin. Only afterward were FBI agents dispatched to interview Christopher Steele — a respected intelligence professional. Along with the Aussies and the Brits, Germany, the Netherlands, Poland, France and Estonia also provided intelligence to the top-secret investigation. The Times story also establishes that, far from being the insignificant “coffee boy” depicted by Trump loyalists after he pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI, Papadopoulos exercised real influence at key intervals. Guided by one Olga Polonskaya, a young woman from St. Petersburg posing as Vladimir Putin’s niece, he helped craft Trump’s first major foreign policy speech on April 27, 2016 — in which the candidate spoke warmly about Putin, with Russian Ambassador Sergei Kislyak seated in a position of honor. While The Times could not confirm that Papadopoulos told the Trump campaign what he told the Aussies about Russian espionage, what would you say are the odds that he kept the secret to himself? Moscow was his meal ticket. With Papadopoulos as a cooperating witness, we can be confident that by this time Robert Mueller’s investigators know for sure.

AR Trump?


n terms of dramatic energy, the 2018 election cycle in Arkansas suddenly looks promising. A flurry of new Democratic candidates — most new to politics and many with interesting paths to the electoral game — announced their intent to run in 2018 in the closing weeks of last year, and Democrats were hopeful of more announcements in the early days of this year. Driven by various forces, from the national to the local to the personal, the next 10 months will determine the buoyancy of a Democratic comeback in the state. However, as shown clearly by her 10-minute announcement video, Jan Morgan’s challenge to Governor Hutchinson in the GOP primary is the most interesting development for sheer theatrics. The question now is whether the changing Arkansas Republican primary electorate has a significant appetite for a populist candidate — an Arkansas version of a Donald Trump — or sticks with its bent for more establishment figures since Mike Huckabee’s departure from the state’s political scene. Morgan, a Hot Springs gun range owner who became nationally famous in 2014 for explicitly barring Muslim Americans from admission to the business (and who later kicked out a Hindu father and son for being “Muslim”), has been visible in state politics since her aggressively ardent testimony against the “watering down” of the state “campus carry” gun legislation late in the spring 2017 legislative session. In a moment that has been watched numerous times on different video-sharing outlets, Morgan shows video savvy developed during her years as a local television reporter. While spending plenty of time on gun issues, the overarching theme of Morgan’s announcement video is a populist cynicism toward “professional politicians” who hide behind voice votes on controversial issues, use hardworking citizens’ taxes for “corporate welfare” to the governor’s “business buddies” and incentives for Chinese companies, and care only about rural citizens when they need their votes. All problems emanate from Little Rock, including high crime rates against which she promises to protect Arkansans. There is a good deal of Donald Trump in the style and phrasings of Morgan; also like the president, Morgan’s policy

responses are generally vague and often contradictory. In the lead-up to Morgan’s New Year’s Eve announcement, Hutchinson had evidenced concern about the risk she poses, not necessarily to cost him renomination, but to weaken his influence JAY over legislators BARTH and his brand of pragmatic conservativism in future election cycles. Hutchinson — the former point person for the National Rifle Association on school safety — has continually reminded Arkansans of his commitment to gun rights, culminating in last week’s directives to the Arkansas State Police and state prosecutors that, in his view, state law now allows open carry in the state. That move marked a stout statement from a typically riskaverse Hutchinson. There is some evidence that Hutchinson is right to be concerned about a Trump-like populist attack electorally. While public polling of the hard-to-identify GOP electorate is rare, polling by Talk Business & Politics/ Hendrix College across the year has shown significantly higher approval ratings among Republicans in Arkansas for Trump than for Hutchinson, despite the governor’s higher evaluations of job performance among all voters in the state. In the most recent Talk Business & Politics/Hendrix College survey, for instance, the governor was running a full 20 points behind President Trump among Arkansas Republicans with 59 percent approval (Trump was at 79 percent.). Barring a lightning strike, Hutchinson’s years of toiling on behalf of the state Republican Party and the connections it brings him, his name recognition, and his proven fundraising ability protect him from any real possibility of defeat by the newcomer. However, Morgan’s showing in the late May GOP primary generally and the additional conservative populism dancing that Hutchinson has to do in the coming months to protect himself will tell us much about Arkansas’s brand of Republicanism moving forward. The fundamental question that Morgan’s candidacy will help answer: Will pragmatic conservatism survive after Hutchinson?


The Weekend Theater As Bees in Honey Drown

12-13 19-21 25-27

The Studio Theatre


Glengarry Glen Ross

11-14 18-21

Performed by Precipice Theatre

Four Quarter Bar Mike Dillon’s Pocket Percussion Consortium feat. Jim Loughlin of moe.



CALS Ron Robinson Theater 2018 Central Arkansas Music Awards


23 JAN

CALS Ron Robinson Theater I Am Emily Doe


The Studio Theatre Breakfast at Tiffany’s

27 8-11 16-18

Barkus on Main DLRP


A Mardi Gras Parade of Pet Proportion


presented by


The Studio Theatre

Studio Theatre 2017-2018 Season Pass

Pet Parade, Live Music, Beer Garden, Hurricane Station, Gumbo, and a Crawfish Boil! A free family friendly event!

Sunday, February 11, Noon – 5 pm 300 Block of Main Street • Parade begins at 2:30 PM at 7th & Main

Parade entry at

The Weekend Theater

2017-18 Season Flexpass

Go to to purchase these tickets and more!

Arkansas Times new local ticketing site! If you’re a non-profit, freestanding venue or business selling tickets thru eventbrite or another national seller – call us 501.492.3994 – we’re local, independent and offer a marketing package!




Vintage Hog ball


rooT CaFe AND ARKANSAs Times PReSenT:

LitTLe rocK’S 6th ANnUaL BearD & mUSTacHe ConTeST

GRoW it AND ShoW it!


(Must have been “Certified Clean-Shaven” at the Root December 2nd or 3rd)

Fullest Beard • Most Original Beard

Lifetime Achievement CategorieS (Register day of contest; no pre-registration required)

Best Mustache • Best Santa Claus • Best Groomed Beard Best Natural Beard Under 6” • Best Natural Beard Over 6” Women’s Category

Best DIY Crafted Beard

PRiZeS FoR WinneRS! More Info: Phone: 414-0423 Email: 8

JANUARY 04, 2018


he Southeastern Conference victory. That alone is a rather critical era of Arkansas athletics has momentum-builder, as Mike Anderson represented something of an had previously won only one of his oddity in that historically, the two six SEC openers as flagship programs cannot seem to head coach on the be on steady footing simultaneously. Hill, and the Hogs Fortunately, at this moment, that have only won their means that the football woes of conference opener 2016 and 2017 (a sub-.500 record a total of four times that torpedoed Bret Bielema’s once- since Richardson BEAU WILCOX promising tenure and has ushered in was fired in 2002. Chad Morris) can take a momentary What that means, mind you, is that backseat to a basketball program that Razorback basketball is back, and this is truly and consistently resurgent team has the feel of a contender that for the first time in the post-Nolan could be playing on the other side of Richardson era. the vernal equinox. Barford is having a That is to say, things are exciting singularly terrific season at both ends aga in a nd Bud Wa lton A rena of the court, and he’s drawing rave doesn’t resemble an echo chamber reviews outside the state’s borders. anymore. On Saturday, a Top 20 Some pundits think he and Macon Tennessee team strolled in for the represent the best Razorback tandem conference opener and for about 37 since the inimitable Scotty Thurmanminutes the Volunteers threatened Corliss Williamson combo, and there’s to yank the rug of optimism out from merit to it beyond the mere statistics: beneath the Razorbacks’ speedy feet. These transfers have already amassed Ahead by nine with about three a 37-12 record in a season and a half, minutes and change to play, Tennessee and the mark is an even saltier 20-5 seemingly had the Hogs buffaloed. The over the last 25 games, which includes Vols had stroked the three-ball nicely, two losses to North Carolina and but most critically they had put the another to Kentucky. clamps on the Arkansas backcourt. This backcourt is dynamic, and Averaging 90 points per contest, is a throwback to Anderson’s days at Arkansas didn’t crest the 60-point Richardson’s side in the late 1980s mark until less than five minutes and early 1990s when junior college remained, and it all looked like a transfers like Lenzie Howell, Robert hopeless affair because the Volunteers Shepherd and Corey Beck came along were extraordinarily resistant to the to provide leadership and fearlessness Hogs’ signature runs. to the perimeter. This group has that Flash-forward about a half-hour, now, and Anderson’s vision for the and Arkansas, naturally, had won rebuild of the program is very much the game 95-93 in overtime. And that in operation as a result. three-headed senior guard combo  How far the team may go could be of Jaylen Barford, Daryl Macon and dictated by the progress that Daniel Anton Beard? Well, all they did was Gafford continues to steadily make throw in 71 points combined, with as the interior presence, the angular, the former duo being responsible for raw Corliss for a new era. Gafford career-high outputs of 33 (Macon) lacks Williamson’s polish and bruiser and 28 (Barford). Beard nailed a big mentality, but he and Bobby Portis three to trigger the Hogs’ critical represented the most pure interior 12-2 run in regulation, then dropped talent since the Russellville Allhome another in overtime to push American roamed the paint for backthe Razorbacks’ lead to 11 before to-back title game teams in 1994 and Rick Barnes’ remarkable little orange 1995. Portis in 2013-15 wasn’t blessed engine mounted one last charge with with the support that Gafford has and, 14 points over the final 40 seconds of in fact, he was leaned upon too heavily overtime to make it close. in his two short years in Fayetteville. When it was all said and done, Conversely, Gafford is getting quality Arkansas finally had the pollsters minutes and learning on the fly, but convinced it belonged inside the Top when he ends up in foul trouble, there’s 25, with a golden RPI, some terrific a measure of depth waiting to soak up nonconference victories, and a sellout some minutes and clog the paint while crowd urging it to an SEC-opening the scorers carry the load.


Baby driver L ong after rookie pilots in The Observer’s day went to test for a driver’s license, Junior, 18, finally took the plunge over the Christmas break and got his permit. It was quite an endeavor to get him to that point, four full years after he legally could have tested and received the same permit in the state of Arkansas. The Observer, like all our friends, was standing on the doorstep of the revenue office the morning we turned 14 with our nose pressed against the glass, repeatedly whispering “open, open, open,” and again at 16. We had long assumed it would be the same for Junior, but 14 came and went, then 16, then 18, his dear Ma and Pa cajoling and arguing and haranguing him the whole way about the wide-open world full of asphalt and adventure, free to roam for those with a license to drive. Junior just wasn’t having it, content to allow his unpaid chauffeurs to deliver and retrieve him on the rare occasions he was required to leave the house. Parents talk, mostly to make sure their kid is no weirder than anybody else’s, so we knew this resistance to driving is common among his generation. Based on our gathered, anecdotal study, it seems like lot of them just don’t want to make the jump from passenger to driver, perhaps content to go places in their minds and screens than drive somewhere to see the real thing. Still, for The Observer — who personally owned three running cars on the day we turned 16, having seen the gleaming, oil-slick heart of the motorvators’ pistons and crankshafts, the birdlike guts of their carburetors laid out on red grease rags, the mechanical ballet of their camshafts and timing chains, pushrods and rockers, intake and exhaust values, all moving as harmoniously as the spheres of the universe to send fuel and air to the tip of a sparkplug perfectly gapped to throw a divine blue spark and bring about The Big Bang — that kind of thinking just does not compute. Still, a year from now, Junior will be in college. So his mother insisted,

and the week after Christmas, off we went to the State Police Headquarters. There we stood in a snaking line filled with parents and their teenagers. Periodically, a woman with a badge behind the desk would bark at some newcomer with his phone out, pointing to the prominently posted signs saying there would be ABSOLUTELY NO CELL PHONE USE in that room. Other than the periodic warnings, we all stood there silently, waiting to be tested, the phone-addicted teens sweating bullets at their momentary withdrawal from the world of texting and Instagram and funny cat videos, adrift for an excruciating 15 minutes in the electronic dead zone. Junior passed his test, of course, even though he’d stayed up until 3 a.m. the previous night and hadn’t, as far as we could tell, studied a lick. He’s good like that. The Observer, meanwhile, had plentiful doubts about his potential success, having taken an online driver’s test the previous night and having failed — twice — even though we’ve been driving so long at this point we used to drag race Henry Ford. Shows what we know. So, belatedly, Junior’s Pa enters the new realm of anxiety known as The Student Driver. Driving is serious business, as John Milner tells young Carol in Gearheadism’s holy text, “American Graffiti,” just before (SPOILER!) Milner and his yellow deuce coupe get mowed down by a drunk driver. He was right. Young folks, for the most part, don’t understand Serious Business. But you can’t get to Carnegie Hall without practice, practice, practice, so now The Observer reluctantly gives up the wheel and heads for the passenger’s seat. As someone who once knew that first excitement of seeing the road roll out before us, knowing that if we stuck to it long enough, we could go anywhere and be anyone, we find quite a bit of excitement mixed in with our trepidation. We’re ready to see where Junior might go, and what he might do when he gets there.

11200 W. Markham 501-223-3120



SCOTCH –WHISKEY – VODKA – GIN Glenfiddich 12yo Single Malt Scotch Everyday $65.99 $58.98 Woodford Reserve Bourbon Everyday $69.99 $59.98 Smirnoff Vodka Everyday $19.99 $16.99 Citadelle Gin Everyday $43.99 $34.99

CONNOISSEUR SELECTION (750 mL) Dalwhinnie 15yo Single Malt Scotch Everyday $65.99 $54.98 Maker’s Mark Bourbon Everyday $27.99 $23.98 Aviation Gin Everyday $28.99 $24.98 Plantation Original Dark Rum Everyday $18.99 $14.98


Stone Cellars Cab, Chard, Pinot Noir, Pinot Grigio, S Blanc, Rose & Merlot Everyday $11.99 $9.98

Flying Solo Grenache Blanc/Viognier & Grenache/Syrah Everyday $12.99 $9.98

Sierra Cantabria 2014 Seleccion Rioja Everyday $13.99 $9.98


Gehricke 2013 Russian River Pinot Noir Everyday $45.99 $31.98 Gehricke 2015 Russian River Chardonnay Everyday $29.99 $23.98 Tower 15 Winery The Jetty & the Swell Red Blends Everyday $19.99 $14.98

Cloisonne 2016 Sauvignon Blanc Everyday $13.99 $10.98

Felino Viña Cobos 2015 Mendoza Cabernet Sauvignon Everyday $22.99 $16.97


3FOR THURSDAY – Purchase 3 or more of any 750ml spirits, receive 15% off *unless otherwise discounted or on sale. JANUARY 04, 2018



Will Arkansas join the red state revolt?


or the first time in more than a But several of the decade, the Republican stran- seats our model glehold on Arkansas state gov- identified as likely ernment is in jeopardy. Using a Democratic pickmodel developed by John Ray and Jesse ups proved surBacon that incorporates a blend of fun- prising, including BILLY damentals (presidential approval rating, Districts 24 (part FLEMING Guest Columnist for example) and legislative district-level of Hot Springs), demography (such as household income 28 (Saline County) and race), we find that Democrats are and 96 (Rogers) — places where incumpoised to break the GOP supermajority bent Republicans have gone unchalin the state’s House of Representatives lenged for far too long. this year. In fact, we estimate that as It’s important to note here that, of many as 16 of the 76 seats held by Re- the 16 districts that we’ve identified as publicans are likely to flip to Democrats likely to flip to Democrats in 2018, 10 do in 2018. not have a declared candidate yet. Those The scale of such a progressive wave communities are precisely where the in Arkansas cannot be overstated. A flip Democratic Party of Arkansas should of 16 or more seats between parties has be focused on recruiting a new generaonly happened once in the last half cen- tion of dynamic, first-time candidates. tury. That, of course, was in 2008 when I should also say that there are a an anti-Obama Republican wave crashed variety of important variables that we through a Democratic supermajority have yet to account for in our model. in the legislature. It marked the begin- The challenges that come from differning of a GOP resurgence in Arkansas ing levels of candidate quality, fundraisthat, over the next decade, would hand ing, dark money campaign expenditure conservatives control of all six congres- and a paper thin state Democratic Party sional seats, the Governor’s Mansion infrastructure could all attenuate the and a supermajority in both chambers progressive wave as it flows through of the state legislature. The election of Arkansas. Though we’ll eventually build Donald Trump is already doing the same those factors into our model, they are for progressives across the rest of the not factored into our current projecSouth. Arkansas appears poised to join tions. But, if last year’s elections in Virthe burgeoning red state revolt. ginia, Oklahoma and Alabama taught us Many of the seats that we expect anything about the viability of the antiDemocrats to flip in 2018 will be obvi- Trump resistance in electoral politics, ous to close observers of Arkansas pol- it’s this: No one knows much of anyitics. House Districts 25 (part of Hot thing about which races will be comSprings and Garland County), 38 (North petitive, which candidates are electLittle Rock), 65 (Conway and Perry able and whether or not progressive counties) and 84 (Washington County) values can win elections in the South. are perennial targets for both parties. Before any establishment Democrats



JANUARY 04, 2018


Safe Democratic Seats (23)

Likely Democratic Seats (3)

Lean Democratic Seats (3)

Tossup Seats (23) Lean Republican Seats (6)

Likely Republican Seats (8)

Safe Republican Seats (32) Budget Supermajority Threshold (75 votes)




Partisan Control Threshold (51 votes)


A MODEL FOR PARTY FLIPS: Democrats could take seats in districts representing parts of Hot Springs and Conway, Perry and Washington counties.

rush to tell me how different Arkansas fielding candidates of their own. Demis from those other places, know this: ocratic office-seekers would be foolish Oklahoma (65.3 percent), Alabama (62.1 not to seek these groups’ support in 2018. percent) and Arkansas (60.6 percent) As progressives gear up for this year’s had comparable Republican presidential elections in Arkansas, it’s important to vote shares in 2016. Democrats cannot remember just how long it took Republiwin where they do not field candidates cans to seize power. Though their wave and invest in organizing. began in 2008, the GOP had to continue Those elections also revealed that making gains through 2016 to garner its progressives can win anywhere, even in now-absolute control over state governplaces where the local Democratic Party ment. Democrats cannot erase those is a shell of its Republican counterpart. gains in a single cycle. But they can use In Alabama, a network of progressive 2018 as the first step in a multicycle effort activists — led by Indivisible, Woke Vote to reclaim the state legislature and erase and many others — organized the ground the corruption that comes from singlegame that delivered a Senate seat for party rule. Doug Jones in one of the nation’s most Though I worked in a Democratic conservative states. In Virginia, a simi- administration, I don’t have much faith lar coalition of local Indivisible groups, in the party’s ability to get many things Sister District activists and candidates right. But I do think the donors who prop recruited by Run For Something flipped it up and the grassroots organizations control of the state’s House of Dele- that elect its candidates should view gates and won a decisive gubernatorial last year’s wins as evidence of somevictory for Ralph Northam. Neither of thing important: The time to invest in those victories would have been pos- politics is now and the place to do it is sible without the resistance. in the South. A similar, nonpartisan infrastructure of progressive activists is maturBilly Fleming is the research director ing rapidly in Arkansas. Ozark Indivis- of the Ian McHarg Center at the Univerible, Little Rock and Central Arkansas sity of Pennsylvania, where he earned a Indivisible, Boone County Indivisible, Ph.D. in city and regional planning. He is Northeast Arkansas Indivisible, Moms a co-author of the “Indivisible Guide,” a Demand and March on Arkansas are co-founder of Data Refuge and a former already organizing in support of pro- Associated Student Government president gressive candidates. A few are even at the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville.


Applications released


he Medical Marijuana Com- local businesses. Doctors and pharmamission released 326 applica- cists will be on hand and healthy-living tions from persons seeking to classes will be held. be licensed as dispensaries and/or Wine will also do research into how cultivators of medical marijuana last cannabis affects the community using week, documents that did not identify Sheriff’s Office data on DUI numbers. the applicant but did provide business “Everything you experience when you names, phone numbers and names of walk into our door should be something the companies’ registered agents (in- that’s good for you,” Wine said. cluding Asa Hutchinson III, the son The dispensary applications did not of the governor, who is representing a ask for information on how the busiBentonville grower applicant). ness would benefit the community, nor The Arkansas Times called a few of did they ask if local politicians and the numbers, but many did not wish community leaders approved. “They to comment or did not call back. For don’t give you any credit for that in the example, Amber Weinzimer, who is application process, but I think they applying for a dispensary license for should have,” he said. Hot Springs Medical, responded “no A potential pitfall is that, as hapcomment” to questions about her cur- pened in Washington County, where rent job, what she hopes for her dispen- the Quorum Court denied a permit for sary to be like and her past experience the Native Flower cultivation center, that would be helpful. She did say she local governments could prohibit a applied “Just to help Arkansans” and state-approved dispensary or cultivathat she has no other investors backing tion. It makes Wine worry that another the project. “It’s me,” she said when kind of politics may come into play asked about her team. when the committee selects the comOne potential dispensary owner said panies to be licensed. “We didn’t come he would not comment because he did from money and we don’t have connecnot want to do anything to give the tions,” he told the Times. “We have a state a reason to deny his request. But strong team but that only goes so far that didn’t make any sense to Mitchell when politics comes into play.” Wine, applying for a dispensary license for The Hemp Cafe in Mountain View, If you’re looking to break into the in the heart of Stone County. “You dispensary industry, consider going wouldn’t do that if you were starting to the Arkansas Cannabis Dispensary some other business,” he said. Agent Training scheduled from 11 a.m. Wine and his partner, Chuck Wid- to 5 p.m. Jan. 20 at the DoubleTree mer, have gone before the Stone County hotel on Rogers Avenue in Fort Smith. Quorum Court and the Mountain View It’s being organized by the Arkansas City Council asking for permission to Cannabis Industry Association and open their operation and have spoken tickets cost $149. Speakers will include, with the Stone County Sheriff’s Office, among others: Frank Hawkins, a distoo. Wine says they hope to meet with pensary owner from Nevada and a the women’s shelter and animal res- former running back with the Oakcue and local businesses, too. They’ve land/LA Raiders; Josh Winingham, a pitched the potential dispensary as a pharmacist and owner of Arkansasnew hub of economic activity. based cannabis consulting firm called Wine thinks outreach is essential. PhytoPharm.D; and Sara Payan, the “I don’t think you can come in and just vice-chair of the San Francisco Cansell pot,” he said. “We need to come nabis State Legalization Task Force in and show the community what and a national writer about medical we’re about.” Wine hopes to open in marijuana. Certificates will be awarded a 7,000-square-foot building off state upon the completion of the training. Highway 66 that used to house the Topics will include everything from Stone County drug court; he is leasing tips for dealing with state regulations the building to buy for $1,500 a month. to the everyday running of a dispensary. (On the idea of a dispensary on a former Call 501-238-1800 for more informadrug court, he said, “It’s ironic.”) The tion. Tickets are available on eventcafe will also sell natural foods from


The story follows Emily Doe, the victim of the January 17-18th sexual assault case of 2015 at Stanford University in Palo Alto, California. The story shows the trauma, fear, and blame one faces after being the victim of sexual assault. With an ensemble of her peers telling the story, Emily must relive her experience one last time in hopes of shedding light on American rape culture and how our society blames victims and normalizes sexual violence. RECOMMENDED FOR MATURE AUDIENCES Hosted by CALS Ron Robinson Theater & Arkansas Coalition Against Sexual Assault 100 RIVER MARKET AVENUE LITTLE ROCK, ARKANSAS 72201 SATURDAY, JANUARY 27, 2018 7:00PM-9:00PM THEATER: (501) 320-5715 ACASA: (501) 246-3276

Get tickets at


Adam Miller Thursday January 18 7:30 p.m. The Joint 301 Main Street North Little Rock

Tickets $25

“His jazz-influenced style with finger-picking mastery creates a improvisation-filled live performance that is beautifully unpredictable.”

Available at the door or online at JANUARY 04, 2018


Arkansas Reporter



WCAD: The $20.3 million visual arts building is open.

A home for the visual arts UALR’s WCAD. BY LESLIE NEWELL PEACOCK


hen spring classes begin 64,000-square-foot Windgate Center for Jan. 16 at UA Little Rock, Art and Design. Built with a $20.3 million the 650 students enrolled in gift to the university from the Windgate fine and applied arts classes will find Charitable Foundation of Siloam Springs, themselves in a sleek three-story, steel- the center pulls together into one space panel-clad heaven of an arts facility: The the various segments of UA Little


JANUARY 04, 2018


Rock’s art and design department, once represent a significant increase in square scattered across three places on campus. footage, it does include technological The gift is yet another manifestation advances and new “maker” and digital of Windgate’s considerable investment in equipment space. the arts in Arkansas. College artists also When students aren’t busy in the have Windgate to thank for the recently north-lit painting and drawing studios, announced $40 million gift to UA Fay- the Fab Lab (fabrication area), the draftetteville to create what will be called the ing studios, printmaking studios, the Windgate Art and Design District and photography studios, etc., they can conthe $15.5 million arts center at UA Fort gregate in their own lounge, decked out Smith as well, to name just two examples. with silicone and fiberglass tree sculpWindgate also funds two artist-in-resi- tures by 2015-17 visiting artist Heidi Hogdence programs at UA Little Rock, and den. The hallways of the 2D building has made gifts of more than a million stretch its length and have windows at dollars to UA Pulaski Tech’s Center for either end; on the west side, the view is the Humanities and the Arts. of mature oaks that line Coleman Creek, Even more Windgate generosity will a wooded area intentionally preserved be on display when the arts center opens: by architects. the inaugural main gallery exhibition, Students will be initiated into the “Building a Collection: Recent Acquisi- building, gallery assistant Nathan Lartions Made Possible by the Windgate son joked, by spinning in one of three red Charitable Foundation,” artworks added Magis Spun chairs in the lobby, irresistover the past seven years to UA Little ible furniture that demonstrates design Rock’s permanent collection of 1,600 and physics at the same time. Students objects. In return for Windgate’s gift, also have a reading room on the first UA Little Rock is raising $3 million for floor; like the 75-seat theater on the first scholarships; it’s a third of the way there. floor, the walls are felted to dampen The faculty, which began moving in noise. The room looks out onto property in December, is ecstatic: Rather than that Roberson wants to see developed kicking back over the Christmas break, with studios for students and the public. photography’s Joli Livaudais was setting Besides attracting new students, the up the photography studios; small met- new building is likely to have an ecoals’ David Clemons was putting together nomic effect on the Fair Park neighborshelving, furniture’s Peter Scheidt was hood, something Windgate Foundation painting. They are, as development Executive Director John Brown noted officer Joseph Lampo put it, “happy as at the groundbreaking in October 2016. clams.” Asked why he thought WCAD would Who wouldn’t be? The 3D facil- have other benefits besides art educaity alone — which accommodates the tion, Brown said, “Two words. Crystal sculpture, metalsmithing and jewelry, Bridges.” Alice Walton’s investment in ceramics, furniture and woodworking the arts in Bentonville has literally transstudios — is nearly 30,000 square feet. formed the Northwest Arkansas town The applied arts program was formerly from its reputation as an undistinguished located in a former storefront in Uni- Walmart vendor hub to a mecca for peoversity Plaza south of the campus. Now, ple seeking fine arts, fine cuisine, fine gallery director Brad Cushman said, the lodging and arts-related entertainment. distance between disciplines will be WER Architects, which designed removed, so that there can be crossover the arts center, is seeking a LEED silinfluence among students who draw and ver certification for the building for paint with students who craft and weld, energy efficiency and water use. Stuin a single building open 24 hours a day. dios have important mechanical feaAll it lacks, artist-in-residence Clemons tures that draw off fumes from palettes, said, is a barista. printmaking inks, photography chemiThe WCAD, as it’s being referred to, cals and sawdust; exterior plantings are will “allow us to be better stewards of our local species that can thrive without budget,” Carey Roberson, interim chair watering. of the department of art and design, said, Almost every classroom in the 2D is because it will allow disciplines to share outfitted with a ceiling projector; the equipment. While the building does not classroom for drawing with a model has

Tune in to our “Week In Review” podcast each Friday. Available on iTunes &

lights that can be computer programmed both for intensity and direction. Photography students have access to printers the size of Volkswagens and can learn the historical gum bichromate processing technique, which Livaudais teaches along with other processes. She’s working to get an MFA program in photography created at UA Little Rock, to “raise things a notch.” Also opening Jan. 16 is an exhibition in the Lower Level Gallery, “Discovering Kate Freeman Clark,” impressionist works by a turn-of-the-century Mississippi artist. The show, which will include a portrait of the artist by William Merritt Chase, will mesh with Floyd Martin’s art history class that is exploring the same period. Annette Trefzer, an associate professor in the English department at the University of Mississippi, will lecture on the show at 2 p.m. Jan. 21. The public is invited to tour the new building at a $100-ticket grand opening event from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. Feb. 16: The steel anvil will be pounding away in the blacksmithing studio, molten bronze will be poured in the exterior foundry, students will paint and draw. Proceeds go to the scholarship fund. Cushman will give a talk on the “Building a Collection” exhibition at 2 p.m. Feb. 25. The catalog for the show, which includes large-scale drawings by Delita Martin (who has decamped from Little Rock to Houston) and Anais Dasse, and the Serie Project Portfolio of work relating to the Mexican-American experience will be released at an event in March. The art school faces competition from the School of Art being developed in Fayetteville, which the Walton Charitable Foundation is funding over the next five years with a gift of $120 million to the UA. But, Lampo noted, UA Little Rock will have its art facility, which has been in the planning for 16 years, open now. “The strength will be in the offerings here, and some things are being taught that aren’t taught in other places,” such as the applied design program’s furniture design, and faculty. That the community supports UA Little Rock’s new emphasis on the arts, Lampo said, is exemplified in the more than $1 million it’s raised since the beginning of the 2017 fiscal year. Here’s what also should make supporters happy: At last, the arts center will have visitor parking, right at its front door.


Inconsequential News Quiz:

BIG We Don’t Need No PICTURE

Education Edition

Play on the bus, as your coach careens toward disaster! 1) The week before Christmas, police said a Little Rock Burger King restaurant was robbed by an assailant who was a little different from most perpetrators. What was unique about the robber? A) It was Santa Claus, trying to score some cash to support a crippling powdered sugar habit. B) She only demanded a cardboard crown and a 5-gallon bucket of sliced dill pickles. C) The robber was 12 years old and opened fire with a handgun after employees laughed at him, thinking his demand to hand over cash was a joke. Luckily, nobody was hit. D) It was Ronald McDonald, with Papa John as his wheelman. 2) Governor Hutchinson recently told the Arkansas State Police and state prosecutors that it’s his opinion that an Arkansas law passed in 2013 legalized something that’s rather controversial. What’s A-OK now, according to the governor’s nonbinding opinion? A) Medical methamphetamine. B) The open carry of handguns. C) White shoes after Labor Day. D) The soulful sounds of Kenny G. 3) A social post from the Little Rock Police Department recently noted that it would “strictly enforce” the law related to a dangerous act some citizens engage in on New Year’s Eve. What’s the issue? A) A New Year’s Eve tradition in which Little Rock residents stealthily approach Mayor Mark Stodola, yank up his shirt, blow a raspberry on his tummy and then run like hell. B) Domestic violence related to couples trying to score the first Dutch oven of the New Year on a significant other. C) Celebratory gunfire at the stroke of midnight, which makes parts of the city sound like the Battle of the Bulge. D) Attempting to get one more run out of this year’s slutty Halloween costume by adding a glittery hat. 4) On Dec. 29, Lamar High School Coach Kevin Kyzer, 51, was arrested by the State Police. Why, according to police, was he arrested? A) He was allegedly drunk driving. B) He was allegedly drunk driving a school bus. C) He was allegedly drunk driving a school bus with nine teenage basketball players inside, on their way to a tournament. D) All of the above. 5) Once the state Legislature gives its final OK, a big change is coming for the estimated 19,000 Arkansas students who are “home-schooled” by their parents or guardians. What’s the change? A) Chemistry courses will now focus solely on how to make the blue supermeth from “Breaking Bad.” B) The core American History requirement can now be satisfied by watching any film in the “Back to the Future” trilogy. C) “Because of the Bible, I guess?” is now considered an acceptable answer to any question posed on a quiz or exam. D) Students will no longer be tested by the state to prove they have reached proficiency in any subject, allowing their “teachers” to simply teach nothing if they like. Answers: C, B, C, D, D



‘Protect and serve’ vs. ‘patrol and control’ As the Little Rock Police Department has increased traffic stops to crack down on crime, it says the stops can also be part of community policing. Other say it’s akin to stop-and-frisk. BY JACOB ROSENBERG


JANUARY 04, 2018




ne night in November, an eye on the stop. Person noticed car.” Person — who describes her none fatally — during a concert at LaJoy Person did not Porter, but focused on the officer car as “not nice” — did not forget to the Power Ultra Lounge nightclub, use her blinker when at her window. The officer asked use her blinker: It’s broken, one of inspired, police said, by a dispute making a left turn, and Person what she was doing in that many problems with the vehicle she between “rival groups.” then noticed a Little Rock Police car neighborhood and for her registration. can’t afford to repair. Police “were The suspected cause of the mass following her. She waited for officers After explaining herself and handing just assuming because of how my car shooting underlined a cruel regularity to pull her over, maybe give her a over some papers, Person looked looked that I was a no good person or to the rising violence. Soon officials ticket, but they just trailed. “[They] behind her and in Porter’s light she something,” she said. “It felt like they launched task forces and made even waited on me to stop at a stop was able to see fully the other officer wanted me to do something more than promises to crank up the federal sign [and] didn’t turn on their lights,” hovering at the rear of her car. just not signal.” prosecution of drug kingpins and she remembered. Only when Person “I saw a [female officer] out on Such stops are called pretextual or to address problems of poverty and arrived at her destination, a white the right side with her gun out,” investigative stops, in which officers unemployment and prisoner re-entry, shotgun house just south of Interstate Person said. “The gun was literally use petty traffic violations — a broken all long-term goals to curb the root 630 where her friend Dexter Porter out.” Porter confirmed this. “[The tail light, expired registration tags, causes of crime. But, in the meantime, has a home office, did blue lights flash. officer] had pulled her weapon from failing to use a blinker — as a means with national news outlets evoking Porter, who had been expecting her holster, but had it down,” he said. to inspect those they deem suspicious again the narrative of a gang war in Person to arrive to lend him a For 15 minutes Porter watched as the and possibly uncover more serious Little Rock (a situation in the ’90s textbook, saw the that still casts a pall lights and peeked over the city), the out the window public demanded of the home. He’s immediate action grown used to from the police being stopped on force. his street. “I’m It was in that numb to it,” he said. context that the He can remember LRPD began, in at least five times August, requiring in the past couple patrol officers to of years he’s been work an extra fourpulled over for hour shift once random stops (and a few twice) and searches of a week on top of his car. But he their 40 hours to did not expect to increase patrols. see Person pulled During a normal over. “I was kind shift, a dispatcher of surprised she d i re c t s p a t ro l was pulled over, officers to 911 calls because she’s such or other reported a known helper in incidents. This the community,” he leaves little time to said. Person, 39, has do anything other been, among other than responsive things, a substitute policing. During teacher for 10 LAJOY PERSON: Stopped for not using her blinker, she was issued a traffic warning by two officers, one of which had the overtime shift, unholstered her gun. years, a member patrol officers roam of a neighborhood neighborhoods that association, an police intelligence AAU men’s basketball coach (some stop continued: the female officer’s crimes. Officers hope to find a gun has shown have high crime and call her “Coach Momma”), a door-to- gun out but down, the other officer or drugs, leading to an arrest. More conduct traffic stops in large volumes. door community aide to help residents questioning Person, and blue lights often they find a driver like Person Overtime pay, from implementation get on health insurance, a volunteer spinning through the darkness of his and offer a warning. to Dec. 8, cost $970,434. for homeless aid organizations neighborhood. In Little Rock, Person’s story is Critics have compared these and a mother to three boys. Person The stop ended with the police becoming common, and so is the investigative stops to stop-and-frisk, and Porter are both studying to be officers giving Person a warning. It frustration. Since Aug. 18, the Little New York’s controversial policy of insurance agents, hence the textbook. was, in some ways, just another of Rock Police Department has been stopping people on the street to As one officer approached many routine police traffic stops. But paying 45 patrol officers overtime question and pat them down, often Person’s window and another took it had a big effect on Person. “It really to conduct increased patrols. The with only a police officer’s suspicion up a position at the back right side made me mad, because he pulled me move came after a violent summer as a motive. As with stop-and-frisk, of Person’s car, Porter decided he’d over for really no reason. Why [were] in the city. By July, Little Rock had 42 proponents of the policy say it’s a valid pretend to take out some trash, walk they trailing me for no reason?” homicides, the same number as the tool to keep down crime. Opponents in front of his house and activate a “I’ve always been doing community entirety of 2016. (At the end of the say it targets communities of color and motion-sensor light so he could watch. work,” she said. “But [the police] don’t year, there had been 55 homicides.) treats innocent people like criminals. He wanted to make sure he could keep look at me like that; they look at my On July 1, 25 people were shot — But in Little Rock, the debate JANUARY 04, 2018


has taken on a new dimension. The LRPD calls the many warning stops — when a pullover does not lead to an arrest or ticket — an opportunity for community policing, part of the department’s proactive strategy to create an amicable working relationship with the public to tamp down crime.

Wendell Griffen, who had been sitting in the back of the meeting room, echoed Richardson’s sentiments. “It is dumbfounding that the Little Rock Police Department would come out and brag about doing a rolling stop-and-frisk exercise and say, ‘Look, this is how we’re going to do community policing,’ ” he said after

and concerned. I think that’s fair. I think that we have an obligation to do everything that we can. However, like I said, we have not abandoned community policing. “We’re not moving in as some type of a major enforcement state. … I think that we are taking a course where we can — as we stop the crime — build a rapport and constructive contacts along the way. We’re not abandoning constructive contacts … even while we’re short-staffed. We’re trying to figure out a way to do both.” BRIAN CHILSON


community policing? Nobody wants to get pulled over, no matter what community you’re in,” she said. “It feels like stereotyping to me. … What was I learning from this, that I can die today, for nothing? ... That’s not making me feel good or comfortable. ... That’s not community policing. How is that community policing? ... If every

When top officers in the LRPD suggested at a public meeting, held Nov. 6 at the Willie Hinton Center on 12th Street, that increased patrols *** could serve as a way to improve community relations, few Others complain of bought it. treatment similar to what Ward 2 City Director Person experienced. Ken Richardson had called It was around dusk when the meeting after hearing the LRPD pulled Sheila complaints from residents Thomas (not her real name) like Person about the stops. over in November. She and a Richardson had earlier sent few friends were headed to the emails to fellow directors Senor Tequila restaurant on and city administrators about South University. the increased patrols. Under Thomas, a middle-aged the heading “Crisis In our African American, moved to Community,” Richardson Little Rock eight years ago and wrote, “Our police/community settled down in the sprawling relationships are horrible at and well-to-do West Little best and insulting and offensive Rock neighborhood of Chenal. at worst.” He said he’d seen She was not surprised to be “single car traffic stops [with] pulled over en route to the 4 or 5 [police] units committed” restaurant. Since coming home and that he’d been told by she’s been pulled over four people who’d been stopped times. Once was for speeding, that “officers were insulting, but she characterized the condescending … dealing with three other stops as simply the community members.” resulting from driving south of But Assistant Chief Interstate 630, long a dividing Hayward Finks told the dozen line between the city’s mostly or more people who attended white residents to the north meeting that he heard from and the mostly black and residents every day, too, mainly Latino residents to the south. those complaining about the Thomas, driving a Cadillac crime. Since police began the with tinted windows, knew the increased patrols, he said, calls ASSISTANT CHIEF HAYWARD FINKS: He says increased patrols are “constructive contact,” meant routine. She steered to the side reporting gunshots fired had to build rapport with the community while bringing down crime. of the road and began gathering declined by 32 percent. He up her documents. But this also said situations in which stop was different from the warnings were given, as with Person, time they pulling you over the gun the meeting. “So we’re not going to past ones: “By the time we looked up, allowed for “constructive contact.” is out?” do community policing, we’re going there were like six other patrol cars,” Police had only used force twice After the meeting, Richardson said to roll up on people and stop them. … she said. Thomas wondered what she amid thousands of stops, Finks said. the idea that investigative traffic stops but, be nice about it? And this is going did wrong and what warranted all the He said officers were respectful and were community policing was “crazy.” to be the way we establish trust and police. One of her passengers, just 19, that giving warnings was a way to “How do you build a relationship build positive relationships with a was “scared to death,” she said. keep crime down and to interact with by randomly pulling over people?” community that already has ample An officer approached and told her community members. Richardson asked. “That’s not reason not to trust us? It’s stupid.” the car’s headlights were not on and to Person was taken aback by Finks’ community policing. That’s random But in an interview, a week after step out of the car. “Magically, when logic when she heard it. “That’s not stops.” the meeting, Finks stuck to his point. we looked, [my headlights] were on,” community policing. How is that Pulaski County Circuit Judge “I mean it’s fair to feel frustrated Thomas said. She was not issued a


JANUARY 04, 2018


ticket and drove away with a warning. between her and the police officer patrol charged 349 felony counts (it’s it out on each other. Usually in some “It just felt it was more like my car rapidly turned hostile as the officer unclear, from LRPD data, how many form of violence.” and the area and just because … just questioned her and even tried yanking actual people received charges) by Finks has said the LRPD is wary trying to see who’s in the car more her from the car. She was arrested for Christmas. of a backlash. He said he knows the than anything,” Thomas said. “Once assaulting the officer. Bland was jailed But data shows the costs too: 5,823 response in Ferguson, Mo., to the they ran my name and thought I was and later found hanged in her cell. subject and traffic stops by increased killing of Michael Brown was in part clear they let us go.” “We have really done the cost- patrols in the same time span. That a result of over-policing for many Kim, a convenience store employee benefit analysis of this kind of policing was approximately 112 traffic stops years. But he says the rolling stops in Southwest Little Rock who declined tactic all wrong,” Epp said. “There of residents like Person and Thomas — and the number of warnings police to give her last name for fear of is a benefit to removing the drugs per one gun seized. have given vs. the number of citations reprisal, said she “watch[es] [the [on a successful search], but what — demonstrate a clear sign that the LRPD] give out warnings all night long we’ve failed to do is assign any kind *** new effort is not just a crackdown — sometimes six police cars will have of cost to a failed search.” Bland’s of enforcement but an effort in one person pulled over.” But, she said arrest and death show those costs The increased patrols have not community policing. she “didn’t totally understand it until bluntly. Investigative stops, Epp says, occurred in a bubble. A task force “The last thing we want to do is it happened to me.” She was exiting create “mutual distrust” that builds up including the State Police, the FBI, the bring the violent crimes down for a a store parking lot on 65th Street between police and the community, DEA and other local agencies is trying minute and then everything blows where there was a police officer in often minority and low-income, that to put together federal cases against up because everybody is so irate with the parking lot. As she left the lot, she is targeted. But when investigative major criminals in Little Rock. The the way the police department has failed to signal as she turned at a stop stops were mainstreamed, aggressive LRPD has touted its Violent Crime been responding to the community,” sign. A little down the road, she saw policing costs seemed secondary to Apprehension Team for making Finks said. “That’s the last thing that “blue lights blazing down 65th Street,” stopping violence. In the 1970s, James many felony arrests. This focus on we want.” Kim said. She pulled over, thinking Q. Wilson and other social scientists enforcement, said Sgt. Willie Davis “Community policing is not just police were going after someone else. developed the “broken windows” — a longtime member of LRPD and a narrowed down to the officers Three police cars pulled up behind her. policing philosophy. Wilson proposed community police officer who runs walking a beat. … The problem is a An officer approached and asked what stringent punishment of minor a program for young black men in lot of times, because of staffing, the Kim, a white woman, was “doing in crimes, such as a broken window, to the department — can be problematic. officers are just constantly going from this neighborhood.” He said she had prevent larger crimes. Holding people “[You] still need somebody to soften call to call and they don’t have to. It’s a taillight out, too, as well as failing to accountable for petty crimes, Wilson that blow because when you go into not because they don’t have the skills signal, and gave her a ticket. “I didn’t argued, maintained order and stopped a community like that — impacting or the will to do community policing. understand why he had to treat me the the erosion of community, which people — you have to have someone It’s because of the call load.” way he treated me,” she said. led to the more serious crimes. He to deal with the people or talk to the The LRPD doesn’t have enough Asked if she felt the officers’ actions advocated for stop-and-frisk. people that are not causing problems,” officers, Finks said. In August, when were helping the community, she said, Wilson acknowledged in a 1994 he said. Otherwise, “they can feel the patrols began, the police had 54 “No, no, no. They are not trying to get New York Times op-ed that stop- intimidated and left out of the loop vacancies (by Nov. 30, with a recent to know people — they can tell you and-frisk could result in profiling: in terms of helping solve the problem.” academy class graduating, the number that, but by my experience alone, “Innocent people will be stopped. This is especially true, Richardson was 21). Police can no longer walk no. I was almost in tears. I haven’t Young black and Hispanic men will says, because the trust between beats in neighborhoods, and have to done anything yet wrong, and you’re probably be stopped more often than police and the community has been respond quickly to 911 calls instead, treating me like a criminal.” older white Anglo males or women of a problem for years. He has repeatedly Finks said. “To be honest,” Kim said, police are any race.” For Wilson, stopping crime complained of heavy policing in “That’s great when you have “just pissing people off.” was more important. communities of color, saying, “There [officers] on bicycles that are walking Thomas also said her stop felt like Finks usues similar logic. He was are some parts of the city of Little Rock the beat in the neighborhood, getting a crackdown, not community policing. at the scene of a murder on Asher where it’s protect and serve for the to know the community. But, due to “I can tell the difference,” she said. Avenue that occurred during rush- Little Rock Police Department, and staffing concerns and issues, we had “That was a threatening interaction hour traffic when he called Chief in other parts it’s patrol and control.” to scale back how many officers we to me. I just think that type of thing Kenton Buckner and petitioned for He said police too often treat residents could put in the neighborhoods,” he is harassment. … I don’t hardly ride the LRPD to implement increased in areas east of I-30 and south of said. After a summer of violence, his at night now. I’m more worried about patrols. It was the third homicide in I-630 “like everybody is everybody’s department needs to simply try to becoming Sandra Bland.” as many days. criminal.” Under the LRPD’s method stem the violence. “I’m much more But Finks points to data that he says of policing, Richardson said, “One day concerned with that right now,” he *** demonstrates the program is working. you’re treated like a trespasser in said. During the first four months of the your community, the next day you’re With new recruitment classes, in a The arrest of Sandra Bland in Texas increased patrols, as compared to the treated like a friend.” Painting traffic year he thinks it’s possible the LRPD is one of the videos Derek A. Epp, an four months before the program began, stops as community policing is just the could have more police working a assistant professor at the University of traffic citations slightly declined, latest iteration, he says, of something community beat. Texas at Austin and one of the authors traffic warnings nearly doubled and that’s been going on for years. In an The LRPD has 19 officers assigned of the soon-to-be-published “Suspect the number of reports of gunshots email to fellow City Board members, to a community beat. Many are Citizens: What 20 Million Traffic being fired declined by 25 percent, he wrote, “I’m not sure if you guys concentrated in the River Market Stops Tell Us About Policing and Race,” from 905 incidents of shots fired from realize this or not but the quick short district, where nine officers patrol uses to explain investigatory stops. April 18 until Aug. 17 to 683 from Aug. term benefits may not be worth the on bicycles. The sprawling southwest Bland was pulled over on a highway in 18 until Dec. 17. There have been 52 long term effects. When these guys are and northwest districts have only two Prairie View, Texas, for not signaling weapons and 114 drugs seized, the upset about the humiliating treatment officers each on bikes. Downtown has when switching lanes. The interaction LRPD says, as of Dec. 25. The overtime by LRPD, they have a tendency to take three. JANUARY 04, 2018



JANUARY 04, 2018


to policing but a part of the job. “If any police officer thinks their job is not social, they need to get their brain looked at. This is social work that we do. I don’t care how you slice it. It’s social work,” he said. “I don’t buy that I don’t want to see them in a grocery store. I want them to see me in a grocery store. Not only that, I want them to see me and my son, who plays in the same park that their kids play in. I want them to know that I have a vested in the community where we all live. … Do I not want to go to church with you? What are we saying?” Remembering the officer who’d unholstered her gun during a traffic stop, Person said the police “need people in the community who are in the community who are not scared of the community. I don’t like scared police in the community, because the first thing a scared police does is shoot.” Davis was quick to defend his fellow officers. “We have a lot of good officers; we do. I think 98 percent of the time we get it right,” he said. “But there’s a small degree. And, there’s a few that will never accept the idea of community policing. In some cases it may be a person that acts as a leader — that may be a leader.” Davis was among the Black Police Officers Association members to criticize Chief Buckner. That’s why so many have been frustrated by the increased patrols, Judge Griffen said. “This is stupid at the policy level,” not just a beat cop going rogue, he said. “And it is going to do what stupid policy has been known to do for a half-century: create more distrust, create more possibilities for flashpoints.” And those flashpoints, he said, can turn into something larger in this city where, already, distrust is pervasive between the police and communities of color. “Little Rock is running out of time,” he said. BRIAN CHILSON

Residents say the reason during the tenure of former Chief why the police department is not they feel targeted is that many Stuart Thomas, the 44,000 square that interested in this area; they’re police officers are not part of the feet of office space in the block-long interested in where the money is.” community: A majority of officers building was supposed to take “the She had beamed with pride when live outside the city of Little Rock department into the future,” Thomas the station was opened — she (65 percent according to the most said at the time, adding, “We’re really thought it meant the police would recent data). looking forward to the opportunity to be part of the community and more LRPD Chief Kenton Buckner has get working and operating out of this businesses would move in. Now, also drawn criticism. Hired in 2014, facility and see how it impacts the rest she’s disappointed. After 34 years his tenure has been rocky at times. The of the neighborhood.” Police hoped on 12th Street, she wants to relocate. Black Police Association has asked the 12th Street Station would solve a “When they had the groundbreaking, for “an independent investigation chicken-and-egg problem: In order I thought it would make my clients into the discrimination, inequities to fix crime, people need jobs, and in more comfortable,” she said. “They and disparaging treatment of minority order for jobs to come, crime needs to are more frightened now than they officers and supervisors” under go down. Mocked-up designs of the were then. Buckner’s command. Critics have 12th Street Station made it look like “I tell you one thing. I couldn’t also said the chief is often rude when a modern mall. keep my door open before the police talking before community groups; At the Nov. 6 meeting at the station and I still can’t keep my door his supporters have said he speaks Willie Hinton Center next to the open. And I can see the police station, with a refreshing bluntness. Buckner, who declined to be interviewed for this article, often talks of “black on black” crime at community meetings and personal responsibility and downplays the idea that nonresident cops are a problem. “Unemployment for black and brown communities is going to [go away]? Now, you know that’s not going to happen,” he said in an interview with the Arkansas Times last year. “The problem is, we keep looking for penicillin pills. It doesn’t exist. Only heavy lifting is NOT A NEW PROBLEM: Increased patrols and resulting poor police-community relations. left. People are going to have to make some strong decisions about how they conduct themselves, station, Buckner said of the lack of and I still cannot keep my door open.” how they go about living their lives, businesses in the area: “You think it’s how they view education, choosing a coincidence that this commercial *** not to do drugs, choosing to have kids side of the 12th Street building is still in wedlock, fathers choosing to have vacant? There are several business Davis, the LRPD sergeant, said an active role with their kids. None of people in here: Who in their right that an emphasis on community that has anything to do with a police mind is going to bring their business policing could help bring down the officer living in the city.” into an area saturated with crime?” crime. Community members have The LRPD recently bought a “Here’s the thing: There is no way also complained about what they building downtown on Markham to any cop, in any city, in any country can perceive as the abandonment of the expand its headquarters. solve any problem unless someone original vision for the 12th Street Buckner’s take on the failure of says, ‘That guy had on a red shirt, Station, which was once promised the 12th Street Station to attract black shoes and he ran west.’ If you to be a mixed-use hub for the police commercial tenants resonated with don’t tell us that, we don’t know,” he and businesses but as of now only Denise Johnson, who owns a beauty said. He does not see community houses LRPD personnel. Built in 2013 salon across the street on 12th: “That’s policing as an extravagant add-on

2018 Big

sion s i m Sub line: d Dea

15th January 1st, 2018 Acts must be able to perform minium of 30 minutes of original material with live instrumentation.

f do




n s ou Huh S M , The e Uh RS ak es s, Th E N Sh one N I , Holy st B W E ick en , Gho S A Ch mad C W rus d No O SH nosau in, Ma n a ra nt Ty Mou

To Enter: Send streaming Facebook, ReverbNation, Bandcamp or Soundcloud links to and include the following: 1. Band Name 2. Hometown 3. Date Band was Formed 4. Age Range of Members (All ages welcome) 5. Contact Person 6. Phone 7. Email All musical styles are welcome.


2 ol.


Ca HOW Ve ts, R CA lve ed t K 4 SE en 0 , te, Ho WI Br -Hu NN oth m, er P o ERS An k er dy fa MI & H ce, X is B Ash V o ig D tray l. am Ba 1 n M by ou hea th d,


COLD HARD CASH! Live Spots at Festivals Around the State. Studio Recording Time and MUCH MORE... JANUARY 04, 2018


Arts Entertainment Truths, lies and Tareytons AND

the Union Pacific trains rolled by just outside the walls, I’d lean back in my chair to watch smoke ribbons lazily curl their way around the Stag Beer sign. As an adult, I’ve had my own important moments at The Forge: A few Christmas Eve nights bending elbows with a collection of divorced dads and long-haul truckers away from home, some particularly memorable birthday happy-hour gatherings. One tense night, I stood up, politely but firmly, to the whole bar in defense of President Obama. There was a long night with a good friend, commiserating about our girl troubles and challenging each

icy goblet while you pat a wandering dog named Freedom and listen to Merle Haggard songs. If you want dinner, it’s gonna be a Slim Jim or bag of chips from behind the counter served with a generous helping of “ why your friendly stoolmate’s old lady is actually the crazy one.” It’s a place for pool tournaments, friendly trashtalking, occasional shuff leboard games and figuring out how you and that guy next to you know each other. It’s a place where it’s oddly busy on weekday afternoons at 4 p.m., and emptier shortly after the five o’clock A love letter to The Forge. whistle blows. The clientele is the real deal at The BY GLEN HOOKS Forge, the kind of folks who’ve raised their share of hell, work with ust exactly how old is The their hands, maybe served a Forge, anyway? little time now and then, and No b o d y d r i n k i n g or have the stories to share. Like working today at this ancient plenty of our families here in cinder-block tavern in Levy Arkansas. My partner likes seems to know the answer to to tease me about my love for this question. Beverly — the “Grampa bars,” and she’s not bartender since pretty much wrong. I like ’em real. forever — can’t recall the date. When my sons were born, Both interior and exterior are I liked to imagine a time in faded and worn, offering no the future when we might evidence of updates beyond all get together and have a new TouchTunes jukebox a drink together as grown and a newish smoke removal men. Sometimes I envisioned fan. When it comes to pinning it being on my front porch, down an opening date for this other times I envisioned it establishment, the collection happening at The Forge. My of irregular regulars around recently legal son, Jacob, the cushioned bartop can accompanied me there for the only loudly proclaim how long first time this year, becoming it’s been since they started the fourth generation of Hooks holding down a seat here. men to help darken The Consensus verdict? It’s been Forge’s already dark door. TIMELESS: Regulars gather at the Levy dive for pool tournaments, dominoes and tales that get taller with each beer. “a good while.” We caught up, played the I’m no more accurate with jukebox, laughed with the the date myself, but The regulars and had ourselves Forge has seemingly always been in steamed, and she knew it would be other to play the single saddest a meaningful moment talking to my consciousness. My grandparents better for everyone if she didn’t go song on the jukebox. I’ve listened to each other as grown-ups. Where my lived up the street for decades, and in and grab Papaw herself. patrons quietly spilling their stories Papaw sat and drank, and my dad sat raised a passel of baby boomer kids In later years, Papaw would of job losses, legal troubles, new and drank, we now sat and drank — from the late 1940s ’til sometime take the little kid version of me to grandbabies and complicated custody and planned our return trip soon. in the early ’70s. Family lore has it The Forge, where I’d munch Fritos battles over dogs. This place matters So, how old is The Forge? that, on more than one night, Memaw while watching old men smoke to me for a lot of reasons, not the least It’s as old as family, as old as Hooks would drive my young dad Tareytons, drink Black Label beer, of which is the free entertainment. barstool friendships, as old as my down to The Forge and send him in play dominoes and tell lies. Those There a re ba rs t hat h i re Papaw’s Tareyton smoke that’s to fetch Papaw Hooks when Papaw were times when I felt like I should consultants and strategize clever probably still bouncing around inside was having too much fun to come try to speak a little more deeply and ways to achieve an “authentic” feel, its walls. Here’s to hoping it’s around home on his own. Memaw was a force sit up a little bit straighter, maybe and then there’s The Forge. Happy for the next generation or two of to be reckoned with when she was shake hands a little more firmly. As hour means slurping $1 drafts from an Hooks men to haunt.




JANUARY 04, 2018



JAN 12

Check out the Times’ A&E blog

A&E NEWS IN PARTNERSHIP WITH Arkansas Sounds, a project of the Butler Center for Arkansas Studies, the Arkansas Times presents the first Central Arkansas Music Awards. Performers,


radio hosts, venue owners and composers are up for awards for work created between Oct. 1, 2016, and Oct. 1, 2017. Among the nominees — chosen by the public and by an esteemed board — are Pallbearer, NVRMND The Morning Show, Bazi Owenz, Adam Faucett, Chris Maxwell, Arkansongs, Harvestfest, N’ell

Gourmet. Your Way. All Day.

300 East Third St. • 501-375-3333

Jones, G-Force, Ghost Bones, Rodney Block, John Willis, Katherine Williamson, Jim Mize, White Water Tavern, Gil Franklin, Country Florist, Lucious Spiller, Shoog Radio, Sumokem, Isaac Alexander, Tiffany Lee, Ted Ludwig, The Creek Rocks, The Wildflower Revue, Kari Faux, Peter Read, Stickyz, bLAck pARty, Mark Currey, Amasa

A museum of the Department of Arkansas Heritage

Hines, Matt White, Junkbomb, Chris King, The Salty Dogs, R.I.O.T.S., Karen Griebling, 607, Lark in the Morning, Charles Woods, Chuck Dodson,

300 W. Markham St.

Nick Devlin, Beth Ditto, Rah Howard, Jamie Lou Connolly, Shannon Boshears, Backroads, Henry Lee, Joe Joyner, South on Main, Joshua Asante, Joe Vick, Spirit Cuntz, Bonnie Montgomery and others. Winners determined by the CAMA board will be announced at a ceremony at the Central Arkansas Library System’s Ron Robinson Theater at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 23, with host Kevin Kerby and live performances from Dazz & Brie, Brethren (Zakk & Big Papa

Two new exhibits, #ArkansasMade beer and live music by Rena Wren

We will be open

Pyramid Place • 2nd & Center St (501) 801-0211

5 - 8 pm

for 2nd friday art night

523 S. Louisiana

A museum of the Department of Arkansas Heritage

Binns and special guests), The Legendary Pacers, Yuni Wa, Adam Faucett, Princeaus and The Brian Nahlen Band. Tickets, $5, are available at and include complimentary drinks. There’ll be a pre-party beginning at 5:30 p.m. at Cache and an afterparty at Revolution Taco & Tequila Lounge. THE ARKANSAS TIMES has extended its deadline for 2018 Arkansas Times Musicians

Showcase submissions to Jan.15. Original

material in any musical style is welcome. Finalists will be asked to perform in one of four semifinal rounds, to take place at Stickyz Rock ’N’ Roll Chicken Shack each Thursday night in February. Winners from each round will compete for a robust prize package in

It’s 2018 - welcome to the New Year and cold weather. Keep the spirit alive by checking out 2nd Friday Art Night January 12.


Our Free Trolley is making the rounds, so hop on and take advantage of the warm ride.

108 W 6th St., Suite A (501) 725-8508

Visit Old State House, CALS Cox Creative and the Butler Center, Copper Grill (new decor & menu), Historic Arkansas Museum, McLeod Gallery, Bella Vita Jewelry, Mariposa and Gallery 221.

Free trolley makes stops in the order listed above - roughly every 20 minutes.



Soundcloud, Facebook, etc.) of your band

was formed, age range of members (all ages are welcome) and a contact person’s name, email address and phone number. Semifinalists will be announced at the Central Arkansas Music Awards Tuesday, Jan. 23.



From your friends at Arkansas times!

the final round Friday, March 9, at Revolution.

performing to and

229 W. Capitol Suite A Little Rock, AR 72201


Send streaming links (Bandcamp, Youtube,

include band name, hometown, date the band

Luxury Photography Experience


Check out more events at

Follow Rock Candy on Twitter: @RockCandies JANUARY 04, 2018






SMALL WORKS, BIG IDEAS: Rex DeLoney’s “We Real Cool” is part of the Arkansas Arts Council’s “Small Works on Paper” exhibition, to open Thursday evening at the Mosaic Templars Cultural Center.



5:30 p.m. Mosaic Templars Cultural Center.

In July 2017, a call from the Arkansas Arts Council went out to Arkansas artists for works smaller than 18 by 24 inches. As part of an annual juried competition the council conducts, Howard University professor James Phillips considered hundreds of those pieces for selection to participate in a touring exhibition, and bestowed purchase awards allowing a handful of them to become part of the Small Works on Paper permanent collection.

Thirty-five artists’ works make up the exhibition, which will travel to 10 galleries around the state in 2018; next stop is Harding University in Searcy. Of those 35, Phillips chose six artists for purchase awards: Terry Lynn Dushan of Fayetteville, Robert Simmons of Little Rock, Rex R. DeLoney of Little Rock, Mitchell Skinner of Grady, Melissa Foster of Conway and Elissa Gordon of Mountain Home. This reception is your chance to check out the work and talk to the artists — or, if your pockets are jingling with Christmas cash, to pick up a few treasures from Mosaic Templars’ gift shop.





I don’t know if you can order a tall boy at the fancy new farm-to-table venue in El Dorado’s resculpted downtown Murphy Arts District, but the Griffin’s staff might want to consider a shipment of the 16-ounce domestic variety this week, when Baton Rouge country rocker CJ Solar takes the stage as part of the free Thursday Night Live concert series. Solar’s barroom self-affirmation “Tall Boy” will undoubtedly inspire anyone sipping a handcrafted cocktail to follow it with something that demands only a napkin as garnish, and Solar’s “Just Another Day in the Country” presents a wild juxtaposition for the spot’s “industrial chic” vibe: “Proud bunch of hicks way out in the sticks, smokin’ that John Deere green.” If this one isn’t in the cards, keep an eye out on this South Arkansas venue’s calendar for a winter road trip; Cody Canada plays the Thursday Night Live series on Jan. 18 and Keith Sykes plays a show at the restaurant Saturday, Feb. 3.

If you could get Google to stop second-guessing you with terabytes of information on The Federalist Papers, you’ll find a handful of songs from The Federalis, a Hot Springs-based group that marries straight-ahead blues drones with crunchy rhythm, lyrics about beating devils and dirty guitar riffs from guitarist Zakk Binns. All that should pair pretty nicely with a few thrashy, trashy rock anthems from Brother Andy and His Big Damn Mouth and the wavy gravy grooves of Couch Jackets, whose mission is recited on Bandcamp as the promotion of “positivity, individual empowerment and wholesome health through the outward expression of universal truths and unending questions” — and who describe their sound as “like an alligator’s eating us,” a bit of self-deprecation that belies the quartet’s tight arrangements and sweetly druggy interludes, a la “Kamels” and “Sonic Tea”: “There’s something in the baby’s room/I will not ask you to, there’s always so much shit to do, but I won’t mind.”

9 p.m. The Griffin Restaurant, El Dorado. Free.


JANUARY 04, 2018


Follow us on Instagram: ArkTimes

9 p.m. Maxine’s, Hot Springs. $7.


THURSDAY 1/4 Comedian Erik Knowles goes for laughs at The Loony Bin, 7:30 p.m. Thu.-Sat., 10 p.m. Fri.-Sat., $8-$12. The Arkansas Chinese Lantern Festival continues nightly at the Arkansas State Fairgrounds, 5:30-10 p.m., $10-$15. E.J.’s Eats & Drinks hosts a rock show with Salsa and Josh the Devil & The Sinners, 9 p.m. Brewski’s Pub & Grub hosts Karaoke in the Basement, 9 p.m.



‘FEELIN FREAKY’: John Nemeth and the Blue Dreamers get Kool-Aid pickly at Stickyz Friday night.



8 p.m. Stickyz Rock ’N’ Roll Chicken Shack. $7-$10.

John Nemeth’s 2017 solo project was produced by Luther Dickinson of North Mississippi Allstars, and its cover features the title, “Feelin’ Freaky,” next to a bumpy crimson Kool-Aid pickle, styled like Andy Warhol’s pop-art banana. That’s enough to let you in on Nemeth’s aesthetic, and to suggest the style of electric blues in which he deals, both under his own name and as vocalist for an outsized project called The Lovelight Orchestra. Like his vocal predeces-

sors Junior Parker and Bobby “Blue” Bland, Nemeth favors big, round horn riffs and nasty Delta guitar, a sound perfectly matched for anywhere that identifies itself as a “rock ’n’ roll chicken shack.” For a primer, check out Nemeth’s mean harmonica on “S.T.O.N.E.D.” and his ridiculous vocal range on the album’s banner ballad, “Rainy Day.” Then, go check out the family holiday card he posted on his social media accounts over Christmas, an endearing and surreal affair featuring Nemeth with his wife and children, perched among a dozen mannequins and a couple of monochrome animal statues.

The next Sandwiching in History Tour from the Department of Arkansas Heritage and the Arkansas Historic Preservation Program explores the First United Methodist Church at 723 Center St., noon, free. Mark Wyers and Jason Hale kick off the weekend with a happy hour set at E.J.’s Eats & Drinks, 6 p.m., free. Vénice Catherine De’Wilde hosts the open stage night at Club Sway, “Gayrobics,” 9 p.m. Empyrean, The Violet Hour and Three Miles From Providence share a bill at Vino’s, 8 p.m., $7. Revolution Taco & Tequila Lounge hosts the Winter All White Party, with dance music courtesy of DJ JJ Wilson and The Sleepy Genius, 9 p.m., $10. Brothers With Different Mothers take the stage at the White Water Tavern, with special guests The Shannon Boshears Trio, 9 p.m. It’s blues night at Kings Live Music in Conway, where Trey Johnson takes his stompbox set, with an opening jam from Jet Blu, 8:30 p.m., $5. Unraveled takes the stage at Thirst N’ Howl Bar & Grill, 8:30 p.m., $5. Foggy Bobcat, Rozenbridge, DJ Shortfuze and Crescent City Combo perform for “What’s Up Fayetteville,” a meet and greet at George’s Majestic Lounge, 9:30 p.m., $5. The Electric Cowboy invites all for country dance lessons with a Pure Hearts Country Swing Workshop, 8:15 p.m.



10 p.m. Four Quarter Bar. $7.

Count this show among the first of a hundred or more shows in 2018 for DeFrance, if 2017 was any indicator of the band’s schedule to come. A straightforward rock outfit whose riffs are polished to a shine by a dense calendar of barroom and festival shows, DeFrance sticks to the sort of “original recipe” rock ’n’ roll favored by its professed influences: Ryan Adams, Neil Young, Tom Petty & The Heart-

breakers. It does it damn well, too. Give a listen to the meandering title track from the band’s 2015 release “Home” and the feel-good opener “Good Love,” and trust anyone who’s heard the band lately and tells you those songs sound way more ballsy and solid than they did when they were recorded. If you don’t catch DeFrance in Argenta Saturday night, make a little scribble on your calendar and check it out at the Tom Petty Tribute and KABF-FM, 88.3, fundraiser at the White Water Tavern Saturday, Jan. 27, or later that same night at Midtown Billiards.

The Meteor hosts a coffee tasting and discussion of coffee-related facts and misconceptions, 10:30 a.m. The Mosaic Templars Cultural Center hosts its monthly Storytime Saturday session with “Proud to Be Me,” 11 a.m. Insvrgence, Castaway, A Fate Foretold and Oblivion Rising share a heavy bill at Vino’s, 8 p.m., $10-$12. Swayde’s Motown Comedy Blast features sets from Eddie Bryant, Mike Bonner, Swayde Wilson, Karl A. Youngman and Keith Glason at Robinson Center CONTINUED ON PAGE 25

Follow Rock Candy on Twitter: @RockCandies JANUARY 04, 2018








8:30 p.m. Revolution Taco & Tequila Lounge. $8.

And just like that, all your world-weary cynicism about bluegrass bands doing quirky covers of ’80s hits can melt away, because you watched Arkansauce take on the Dire Straits’ “Money for Nothing,” complete with three-part harmony, the sustained intro and sneering lyrics — though they do make some amendments to that homophobic bit in the second verse. Lest you take the stringed ensemble for a gimmick band, though, check out the video for their song “Canary in a Coal Mine,” filmed in front of Fayetteville’s “most famous tiny house, which belongs to Trans-Siberian Orchestra violin player Asha Mevlana and adventure journalist Ryan Van Duze.” The group’s got a strong collective sense of where the beat lies, and that rhythmic confidence affords it a crystal clear cohesion; too clean and smart to be lumped in with Banjo Billybo-singing Adele (that is a real thing), and too harmonically inquisitive to come across as a Flatt & Scruggs tribute. Wear comfy shoes; this is some sweet two-step music and the Rev Room’s got a great dance floor for it.



9 p.m. White Water Tavern.

When it comes to the blues, seniority and experience are prized, and it’s no wonder: How can you channel the languages of aches and redemption, after all, if you haven’t lived enough life to speak it? There are, however, at least two powerhouses of the new guard of local blues musicians, and they’re sharing this bill in what may be the closest thing we’ve got to an old juke joint. Morrilton native Akeem Kemp gets downright mean on the guitar. He’s been playing with the same musicians since they were young and it shows. Taylor, a soul crooner and wailer from Heber Springs whose voice can coo, shout and snarl in the same stanza, is backed by her own longtime ensemble, Gypsy Rain. If local blues music has been off your radar a while, this is one to catch. SALUTE THESE SHORTS: Handcrafted trophies await the winners of Low Key Arts’ Arkansas Shorts, a one-night-only showcase of short films at the historic Malco Theater in Hot Springs.



4 p.m. Historic Malco Theatre. 121 Central Ave., Hot Springs. $10-$20.

Reasons to be in Hot Springs for this evening with Low Key Arts include, but are not limited to, the following: 1. You love inventive film but missed last year’s Hot Springs Documentary Film Festival and just can’t wait until next October — or, lacking the stamina for multiday film festivals, you’ve never been to HSDFI and need all that fabulousness squeezed into a single evening where all the films are less than 10 minutes long. 2. You want to watch movies inside the historic Malco Theater on Bathhouse Row, a gem of an art deco building whose glitzy marquee once boasted the names of silent films and vaudeville shows. 3. You’ve got breadth. The Low Key Arts screening committee organized picks into neat blocks, as the press release details: “an International block; a North American block with films that have screened at


JANUARY 04, 2018


Follow us on Instagram: ArkTimes

festivals like Sundance, SXSW, and the Hamptons International Film Festival; a block of student films from this year’s Inception to Projection filmmaking class; and the Arkansas Shorts block, featuring a juried selection of films made by Arkansas residents and natives.” 4. You’ve got options. A Hamilton will get you into one of those blocks if you’re strapped for time, or you can pay the $20 all-access admission and get photographed by Thomas Petillo at the opening reception, watch all three blocks and get into the afterparty at the new SQZBX pizzeria and brewery at 236 Ouachita Ave. 5. As curator and filmmaker Jen Gerber said in a press release, “the seating is packed and the room is full of energy. I’ve traveled with my films to festivals around the world and Arkansas Shorts is one of the best screening experiences a filmmaker can get.” Reasons not to go? You or the little ones you’ll have in tow Saturday night are averse to strong language, nudity or violence, any combination of which may well be present in some of the films screened.



TRADITIONAL IRISH MUSIC SESSION 2:30 p.m. Hibernia Irish Tavern.

Every Sabbath, just about the time you peek in the refrigerator to discover you haven’t enough beer for a proper #sundayfunday, an informal session of traditional Irish music is kicking off at Hibernia Irish Tavern, and a host of Irish culture and music appreciators are sitting around a table casually playing fiddles and squeezeboxes and nursing pints of Guinness or Smithwick’s. Or maybe Miller Lite, who knows? Whether you’re a devotee to The Chieftains or just looking to expand your awareness to the realm beyond The Pogues, this weekly jam session deserves a wider audience, of which you could very well be a part.

Performance Hall, 8 p.m., $28-$38. Irma Gerd and Jess Kitten lead the drag party at Club Sway, “Club Camp: Dollar Menu,” 9 p.m. One Way Road performs at Kings Live Music, with an opening set from Jamie Patrick, 8:30 p.m., $5. Intruders entertain at Thirst N’ Howl, 8:30 p.m., $5. Heather Batchelor performs at By the Glass, 7 p.m., 5713 Kavanaugh Blvd., free. Bark Bar at 1201 S. Spring St. offers free admission to all rescue dogs, with animals from Central Arkansas Rescue Effort for Animals (CARE) on site for an all-day mixer (don’t forget to take along your dog’s shot records), 10 a.m. Funk Factory brings its grooves to George’s Majestic Lounge in Fayetteville, 9 p.m., $10. Rock City Rowing hosts a free indoor rowing class, 10 a.m., Little Rock Athletic Club, 4610 Sam Peck Road.

SUNDAY 1/7 El Zocalo Immigrant Resource Center kicks off the new year with a Dia de Los Reyes open house with hot chocolate, atole and traditional king cakes, 3 p.m., 5500 Geyer Springs Road. Macarthur Museum of Military History screens “The Trial of David Owen Dodd,” 2 p.m., free.

MONDAY 1/8 Tomes + Tea Book Club discusses Ram Dass’ “Cookbook for Awakening,” 6:30 p.m., Arkansas Yoga Collective, free.


Tweet shop LOCAL ARKANSAS TIMES Life is better with friends.


REDHOT & BLUE: Yale’s oldest all-gender a cappella group performs at the Arkansas State Capitol rotunda Tuesday morning at 10 a.m. and again that evening at South on Main.



8 p.m. South on Main. $10.

Yale University’s oldest all-gender a cappella group was founded in 1977 and is named after a musical by a revered alum and former president of the glee club: Cole Porter. Since those days, Redhot’s become a traveling affair, touring three times a year and peddling unaccompanied interpretations of Porter’s own tunes and other jazz standards from the Great American Songbook, peppered more recently with covers of spiritual and gospel works and percussive takes on Britney Spears’ “Toxic” and Cherry Poppin’ Daddies’ “Zoot Suit Riot.” This year, the group’s chosen to follow up its 2017 tour of Paris with some time in Arkansas in January (oof, sorry about that), and our ears will be the better for it. If you’re a loyal Pentatonix fan or are just curious what a wholesome, 15-voice version of “Hit the Road, Jack” might sound like, this isn’t a bad way to spend a Tuesday night.

“Casablanca” goes up on the big screen at Riverdale 10 Cinema, 7 p.m., $9. Blue Canoe Brewing Co. hosts Yoga on Draft, a yoga class that comes with a pint, 6:30 p.m., $10-$11. The Architecture and Design Group hosts “Revitalizing the Arkansas Delta Culture for the 21st Century,” a lecture from Martin Smith, PLA, ASLA, partner and landscape architect with Ecological Design Group Inc., 5:30 p.m., Arkansas Arts Center.

Call us at 501-242-4091 today to learn more! Experience independent retirement living in a community where neighbors become friends!

WEDNESDAY 1/10 Fretmoney Records hosts an Open Mic Night at Kings Live Music, or come early for trivia, 8 p.m., free. Ralphie Roberts takes his stand-up routine to The Loony Bin, 7:30 p.m. Wed.-Sat., 10 p.m. Fri.-Sat., $8-$12. CONTINUED ON PAGE 25

Andover Place

Independent Retirement Living


Follow Rock Candy on Twitter: @RockCandies JANUARY 04, 2018



FOR THE UNINITIATED, a poke (pokeeh) bowl is a healthy Hawaiian meal of raw (or sometimes cooked) fish doused in soy sauce, sesame and onions and such, sometimes over rice. Think open sushi roll. You’ll be able to try poke out when a Poke Hula franchise opens “after the first of the year,” its Facebook page announces, at 419 E. Third St., in the former Blue Canoe storefront next to the Tuf Nut lofts. The bowls feature tuna, salmon, shrimp, cucumber, edamame, even chicken. You can build your own poke bowl. The website lists hours as 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Friday and 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. 26

JANUARY 04, 2018



IF YOU WERE in SQZBX Brewery and Pizza Joint for lunch last Wednesday in Hot Springs, you might have gotten to hear music by “Larry the flugelhorn player.” That is something you might expect at a restaurant started by Cheryl Roorda and Zachary Smith of the polka duo The Itinerant Locals, and judging by Facebook reviews, you can expect good pizza and homebrewed beer. SQZBX (as in squeezebox, which Roorda plays) quietly opened Dec. 18 in a building the couple renovated at 236 Ouachita Ave. and has had a nice turnout, Roorda said. Smith, also known for his work at KUHS-FM, 97.9, the solar-powered radio station next to the restaurant, learned how to make pizza dough from scratch in North Carolina, and the couple makes all the bread they serve. The menu includes appetizers (bread knots, an antipasto plate and more), salads, submarine sandwiches and New York-style pizzas. By the time this sees print Roorda ought to have four SQZBX brews on tap; three on tap last week were American pale ale “Mile Marker,” light ale “Southern Lights” and Abbey ale “Winter Market.” There will be six homebrews eventually. You can also get the gluten-free “Glutiny” (New Belgium) and a choice of three wines. Besides their craft beer, the RoordaSmiths serve a cider on tap and bottled. They will have gluten-free pizza soon, when the flour comes in. Diana Bratton of Taco Mama and Cafe 1217 is providing the dessert — cheesecake — at the moment. SQZBX, which seats 91, made the local news recently when 10 workers from a shuttered Dixie Cafe in Hot Springs found work at the pizza parlor. “How lucky for everyone,” Roorda said at the mention of the workers’ good fortune. “We have a crew of people ready to work and it’s great.” Hours are 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays and 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Friday and Saturday.

A FEAST: The Loaded Nachos could feed two.

No meat, no matter

meaty and creamy. You can try it all in two trips. Start with the Loaded Nachos ($8). It comes with a bed of tortilla chips topped by Viva Vegan’s two proteins: Korean BBQ, a textured plant protein (100 percent better than the name suggests) cooked in a tangy marinade, and carnitas made of jackfruit, a big Viva Vegan will make you a believer. green fruit native to South Asia that, honest to God, looks like pulled pork n 2016, Springdale-based Tyson meat producer in the U.S. and the when it’s unripe. Unlike tofu, jackfruit Foods took a 5 percent stake in world’s largest chicken producer. It’s takes a marinade easily. Viva Vegan Beyond Meat, a leading vegan a positive sign for those of us who owner and chef Maria Larios slow“meat” manufacturer known for believe that factory farming is bad cooks it in a secret marinade for producing a burger made of plants for the environment, bad for human eight to 10 hours. The result: It also that “bleed” (Tyson added to that health and bad for animals. It’s also, tastes like pork, but without any of investment with an unspecif ied perhaps, a sign that makers of fake the saturated fat or cholesterol. On amount in December). Last year, meat are coming up with products that top of the meats comes a touch of Tyson Foods CEO Tom Hayes told Fox don’t taste like rubber or tofu. spicy kimchi, Korean-style seasoned Business, “Plant-based protein is Unconvinced? Try Viva Vegan, a vegetables, chopped red cabbage and growing almost, at this point, a little delightful newish vegan and gluten- a crema rich enough that you would faster than animal-based, so I think free restaurant that will make never guessed it’s made of pea protein. the migration may continue in that you forget how unfun “vegan” and The Korean BBQ ($3) and jackfruit direction.” “gluten-free” sound. There you’ll find carnitas ($3) also come in street-style T h a t ’ s p r e t t y s i g n i f i c a n t , Mexican-fusion tacos and nachos taco form, open face on corn tortillas. considering Tyson is the largest made without meat or dairy that taste


Follow Eat Arkansas on Twitter: @EatArkansas


Vote your conscience.

Check out the Times’ food blog, Eat Arkansas BRIAN CHILSON

Wait, we meant "stomach." Vote your stomach.

North Little Rock | Conway |

WE SPEAK SPANISH, DO YOU NEED HELP? ON 12TH FOR A REASON: Owner Maria Larios wanted to give her neighbors a more healthy and tasty food option.


25 DE MAYO 2017 • VOLUMEN 17 •

There’s also another taco treatment of jackfruit that tastes like a classic pork street taco and comes topped with minced onions, cilantro and lime. On one visit to the small but homey brick-and-mortar we split an order of Loaded Nachos and ceviche ($6) with a friend and left sated. The ceviche is made of hearts of palm and whatever other fresh vegetables Larios has on hand marinated in lime and seaweed, topped with an avocado tomatillo sauce and served with tortilla chips. We could eat it by the bucketful. Larios opened the restaurant late last year after running Viva Vegan as a pop-up operation for a time. After living in LA, she and her partner landed in Little Rock somewhat at random, she said. They were looking for a community with a lower cost of living than in LA and with natural beauty; Little Rock fit the bill. Another motivating factor for Larios was her desire to continue and expand her Burrito Project food justice outreach, where she works to pool resources in the community to make food for homeless and low-income people. She also does mini-cooking demos on cooking plant-based foods that are affordable and taste good. Locating Viva Vegan on 12th Street was by design. It’s near where she lives, for one. When she moved there, she

Our sister paper El Latino is Arkansas’s only weekly – audited Spanish language newspaper.




Viva Vegan 4601 W. 12th 901-303-8453 Quick bite

The horchata ($3), not available every day but often, is delightful. The innovative, revolving desserts — chocolate and strawberry cupcakes, chocolate chip cookies, carrot cake donuts — are good, if a touch sponge-y. Unlike the entrees, where nothing seemed lacking, we missed butter in the few we sampled. Larios says she’s contemplating expanding hours to include a Sunday brunch, by customer demand. On Sunday, Jan. 7, she’ll offer a special brunch event from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.


11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday.

Other info

Credit cards accepted.

said, she noticed that her neighbors didn’t really have many nearby food options. So far, many of her customers have been from the neighborhood, she said. A number of them have come in and said that their doctor has told them they need to cut back on meat, but after living on the same diet for all their lives, they’re at a loss of how to go about it. Viva Vegan is a good place to start.




Arkansas has the second fastest growing Latino population in the country and smart businesses are targeting this market as they develop business relationships with these new consumers. El Latino is a free publication available at 185 pickup locations in Central Arkansas.

Contact Luis Garcia today for more information! 201 E. Markham suite 200 • Little Rock AR (501) 374-0853 •


The Nervous System controls virtually everything about the body. When you work neurologically, you can change everything else for the better - and do it much faster.

Technology Enhances Natural Processes, It Doesn’t Replace Them

We use advanced technology to accelerate your body’s internal processes. When given the right signals, your body heals itself from injury, builds muscle, and creates good health.

Provide a Safe Environment to Push Beyond Your Comfort Zone Traditional training and rehabilitation often do not achieve results. We stimulate the body to adapt, so that it can make lasting improvements.

BUILD MUSCLE • BURN FAT• IMPROVE PERFORMANCE HEAL INJURIES • REDUCE PAIN • BUILD STAMINA JP FITNESS AND RECOVERY exists to help willing individuals activate the potential that is present inside of them. Our neurologically-based system is designed to help you achieve greater levels of neurological activation and control in order to heal faster, get fitter, and perform better.


APPOINTMENT ONLY! • Call or text 501-952-5735 or email JANUARY 04, 2018



IN THE SWIM OF THINGS: Elisa (Sally Hawkins) and her merman.

Girl meets amphibian Del Toro’s ‘The Shape of Water’ is, foremost, a love story. BY SAM EIFLING


hen a filmmaker becomes as influential and successful as Guillermo del Toro — a “Hellboy” here, a “Pacific Rim” there, “Pan’s Labyrinth” for the pure aesthetes out there — one hopes, surely, not to have to make demeaning, sound bite-sized pitches for projects. Yet the one that kept coming to mind during “The Shape of Water,” del Toro’s lush, strange and sort of pervy Cold War fairy tale about a woman and the fish-man she adores, the phrase that kept popping into my head was, it’s like “Amelie” meets “The Creature From the Black Lagoon.” Looking at the allowance del Toro received — less than $20 million for the picture — it must’ve read like that on paper. Lamented the beleaguered director/ screenwriter: “It was a terrible filmmaking experience. Very difficult, very difficult. We crammed $60 or $70 million of budget into a movie that had only $19.5 [million].” That’s a pittance, especially when you’re setting most of the action in a giant government facility slash research bunker; hiring as your stars Sally Hawkins, Octavia Spencer, Richard Jenkins and Michael Shannon, Oscar nominees all (Spencer, a winner); and building an anatomically credible man-shaped fish 28

JANUARY 04, 2018


creature replete with the sort of anatomical details (second eyelids, bristling quills, rad electrical currents) that make you believe, sure, the U.S. government found this specimen and maybe now wants to weaponize it, or at least make sure the Russians don’t get it? “The natives in the Amazon worshipped it,” says Shannon as Strickland, the brutal hardass in charge of the project and the antagonist. “Like a god. We need to take it apart, learn how it works.” But — on a budget, everyone. You won’t miss the expenditure, though; del Toro is a mastermind at visual storytelling, and for all the grandiosity of the setup, the real story unfolds not as a monster-action flick but as an old-fashioned romance. Hawkins and Spencer are cleaning staff at this quasi-military facility where the creature (credited as “amphibian man,” he’s played by Doug Jones) is brought in one day — ostensibly as a top-secret asset, though guarded with 1960 tech and apparently without regard for the help. Hawkins, as Elisa, is mute; Spencer, who is black, seems equally invisible to Strickland and the rest of the brass there. Elisa in particular is captivated by this creature they keep

chained in a tank, and which Strickland sadistically zaps with a prod. She smuggles in a turntable to play music for the creature; she gains his trust by leaving hard-boiled eggs on the rim of his pool; she teaches him some rudimentary signs so they can chit-chat. For an amphibian man, look, let’s just get this out of the way: He’s pretty ripped. Maybe someone out there has an inchoate thing for mermen or whatever. If so, you totally hit the jackpot. Anyway, Elisa and our swimming friend become pals, and maybe more than pals, and we know this is all going somewhere pretty romantical because the movie is pretty upfront about Elisa’s affinity for water (rarely in American movies will you see a character incorporate self-pleasure into her daily bath as forthrightly as Elisa). She enlists the help of her painfully lonely, gay, recovering alcoholic artist neighbor (Jenkins, movingly) to help her make a break with her crush. Shannon, on the other end of the pendulum, is as ever the hard-edged, block-jawed emotionally constipated mid-century American male. He likes his Cadillac, his pneumatic wife and maybe his kids, if he were to notice them. He doesn’t hear the Frenchtinged soundtrack, nor the jazz and blues of Elise’s records, nor does it cross his mind that if a god exists, that He might look completely different from the old European notion passed down to us through cathedral frescoes. He might, in fact, be a gentle, rad fish creature who gets the hots for a quiet janitor who has good vinyl and who is, foremost, in touch with herself.


THEATER “A Fertle Holiday.” The Main Thing’s rapid-fire holiday musical comedy about a “trouble-ridden holiday reunion in the tiny town of Dumpster, Arkansas.” 8 p.m. Fri.-Sat., through Jan. 13. $24. The Joint Theater & Coffeehouse. 301 Main St., NLR. 501-372-0205.



ARKANSAS ARTS CENTER, MacArthur Park: “49th Collectors Show and Sale,” works from New York galleries, through Jan. 7. 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Tue.-Fri., 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Sat., 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Sun. 372-4000. ARKANSAS STATE UNIVERSITY, Jonesboro: “Sorting Out Race: Examining Racial Identity and Stereotypes in Thrift Store Donations,” objects on loan from the Kauffman Museum, ASU Museum, Jan. 8-March 10, panel discussion 5-7 p.m. Feb. 6. 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays, extended hours to 7 p.m. Tuesday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday. 870-972-2074. BUTLER CENTER GALLERIES, Arkansas Studies Institute, 401 President Clinton Ave.: “Reflections in Pastel,” the Arkansas Pastel Society’s national exhibition, through Feb. 24; “Bret Aaker: Conatus,” Loft Gallery, through Jan. 27. 9 a.m.-6 p.m. Mon.-Sat. 320-5790. 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.: “Mandela: The Journey to Ubuntu,” photographs by Matthew Willman and recreation of Mandela’s cell, through Feb. 19, 2018; “Art of Africa: One Continent, Limitless Vision,” pieces from the Clinton Presidential Center’s archives as well as from President Clinton’s own personal collection, through Feb. 12, 2018; permanent exhibits on the Clinton administration. 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Mon.-Sat., 1-5 p.m. Sun., $10 adults, $8 seniors, retired military and college students, $6 youth 6-17, free to active military and children under 6, President Clinton’s birthday. 374-4242.


van Wyler captures the attention of Alexa Vere de Vere, a black-clad woman of mystery who has made the work of celebrity her home. Maybe she’s a record producer, maybe she’s a film agent, what is clear is that she wants Evan to write the screenplay of her life story. Evan discovers a chain of people who have fallen under her spell and acted as her meal ticket. JANUARY 12, 13, 19, 20, 21, 25, 26, 27, 2018 $16-ADULTS • $12-STUDENTS & SENIORS THURSDAY, FRIDAY AND SATURDAY NIGHT CURTAIN TIME IS 7:30 PM. SUNDAY AFTERNOON CURTAIN TIME IS 2:30 PM.

Please arrive promptly. There will be no late admission. The House opens 30 minutes prior to curtain. Box office opens one hour before curtain time. For more information contact us at 501.374.3761 or OUR 25TH SEASON IS SPONSORED BY PIANO KRAFT to purchase tickets and flex passes.

1001 W. 7th St. • Little Rock, AR 72201 • 501-374-3761


CRYSTAL BRIDGES MUSEUM OF AMERICAN ART, One Museum Way, Bentonville: “Native North America,” indigenous art, through Jan. 7, 2018; “Not to Scale: Highlights from the Fly’s Eye Dome Archive,” drawings and models of Fuller’s geodesic dome, through March 2018; American masterworks spanning four centuries in the permanent collection. 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Mon., Thu.; 11 a.m.-9 p.m. Wed., Fri.; 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Sat.-Sun., closed Tue. 479-418-5700. ESSE PURSE MUSEUM & STORE, 1510 S. Main St.: “The Power of Plastics: Reshaping Midcentury Fashion,” plastic handbags from Anita Davis’ collection, through Jan. 7; “What’s Inside: A Century of Women and Handbags,” permanent exhibit. 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Tue.-Sat., 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Sun. $10, $8 for students, seniors and military. 916-9022.

Get tickets at JANUARY 04, 2018




The holidays are over; start your new year off the right way and shop these stores!

Surround yourself

with style in 2018, from the market to the table, with housewares and more from Stifft Station Gifts.

Your favorite wines have arrived at your

neighborhood grocer, Edwards Food Giant in Tanglewood! They have them all…Grab dinner and drinks this week at Edwards Food Giant.

Want to add some whimsy to

your life in 2018? Choose from our adorable pillow collection! These dog pillows will bring life to any room. Find these and more at Cynthia East.

Pick up ingredients at

Colonial and stay warm with an Earl Grey Hot Toddy. You’ll need 2 Earl Grey tea bags, 1 ½ cups of boiling water, 1 ½ oz. of Old Grand Dad Bonded Bourbon (per serving), 4 Tbsp. of fresh lemon juice, 2 Tbsp. of honey, and a lemon slice for garnish. Add the tea bags to boiling water and let them steep for about 5 minutes (you want it dark and strong). Stir in the honey and lemon juice. Add the Bourbon to a mug, top with the tea mixture and add your lemon slice!


Find the featured items at the following locations: Colonial Wines & Spirits

11200 W Markham St. 223.3120

Cynthia East Fabrics

1523 Rebsamen Park Rd. 663.0460

Edwards Food Giant

7507 Cantrell Rd. 614.3477 other locations statewide

Stifft Station Gifts

3009 W Markham St. 725.0209

Translucent Orchids

Delicate and delightful patterns always in bloom.

1523 Rebsamen Park Rd | Riverdale Design District | Little Rock, AR 501-663-0460 | 10:00–5:30 Mon–Fri;10:00–4:00 Sat | 30




Manager, Program Engineering Support wanted by aircraft services co. in Little Rock, AR. For assigned model aircraft & vendor, monitor fleet airworthiness & tech’l issues to provide fleet w/ corrective solutions in collaboration w/ Dassault Aviation & associated vendors. Provide fleet info to Command Center, Field Service, Service Centers &/or customers upon request. Respond to customers orally & in writing & represent the Western Hemisphere customers’ voices. Reqs HS dipl. +4 yrs of exp in tech’l aspects of aircraft support or system dsgn, incl hands-on aircraft maintenance exp on Falcon or similar business aircraft. Reqs A&P (FAA Airframe & Powerplant) license; or in lieu of an A&P license, employer will accept Bach’s deg in Mechanical Engg, Aeronautical Engg, or closely related. Send resumes to: Dassault Falcon Jet Corp., Attn: Randall Lui, Teterboro Airport, 200 Riser Rd, Little Ferry, NJ 07643


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.


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.


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. JANUARY 04, 2018






Culinary Arts and Hospitality Management Institute


ARKTIMES.COM/RESTAURANTS18 This March, the Arkansas Times will put out the 37th edition of our Readers Choice restaurant awards. That makes us the oldest and most respected readers survey in Arkansas. Walk in many restaurants around the state and you’ll see our posters on the walls. Be a part of the tradition: Vote online for your favorite chefs and restaurants in dozens of different categories. Winners will be announced in the March 15 issue and an awards celebration sponsored by Ben E. Keith Foods, Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits, Southern Glazer’s Beers will be held at the UA Pulaski Tech Culinary Arts and Hospitality Institute who will prepare all the food for the celebration March 13.


JANUARY 04, 2018




Arkansas Times - January 1, 2018  

Community Engagement, LRPD Style - The Little Rock Police Department says traffic stops can be community policing. Some residents say it is...

Arkansas Times - January 1, 2018  

Community Engagement, LRPD Style - The Little Rock Police Department says traffic stops can be community policing. Some residents say it is...