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April 29, 2010

Vol 8 • No 16

The 2010 Arkansas Times Academic All-Star Team

Good things are happening in Arkansas schools.

Shuffling school deck chairs

Belatedly, a note that the Little Rock School Board declined last night to ratify Superintendent Linda Watson's idea to hire a new faculty for Forest Heights Middle School, where teacher absenteeism and discipline are among pressing issues for a school failing to meet academic targets.

In the field

I look forward to results of a robopollster in the field last night on the Democratic Senate primary.

Downhill slide

We're over the hump. The line is open.

Flo reports

Since our house burned in November, we have been so blessed. We have a nice cottage for seniors in Otter Creek. People have been so good to us. God has met our needs.

State of mind

As all know by now, Mike and Janet Huckabee say they have become legal residents of Florida, for unexplained “business” reasons. However, we noticed this 'tweet' on the Twitter account of Sarah Huckabee: "Going for a stroll with my old man in his neighborhood in NLR."

Footprints

I’ve been thinking about footprints. Instead of footprints on the sands, I’ve left mainly assprints on the couch.

The Week That Was, April 21-27

SEN. BLANCHE LINCOLN. She won some brief acclaim for tough legislation to increase regulation of derivatives trading. She also did well in a televised debate Friday night, not so well in an untelevised match with Bill Halter before a news organization.

Dilemmas

Early voting opens at 8 a.m. Monday, May 3. Among the quandaries remaining on the Democratic side of the ballot: the Democratic primary race for 2nd Congressional District, the race for state Supreme Court and the fight for U.S. Senate.

The Observer, April 29

On the way to work this morning, in the parking lot down by the freeway, The Observer found some money among the pigeon poop. It wasn’t a lot — two fives and two singles.

Blanche wants to be as liberal as Halter

A reporter from Politico asked U.S. Sen. Blanche Lincoln on Saturday if Bill Halter was more liberal than she. Her answer two weeks ago would have been pretty much this: “Oh, yes. Just look at who’s behind him, national labor unions and moveon.org."

Words, April 29

“Many corporations assume that agencies that accept equity in lieu of cash will be more incented because they will have ‘skin in the game.’” Barbara Jaquish writes, “I’ve ground my teeth over ‘incentivize’ and now comes ‘incented.’ Tell me this is an anomaly and this ugly word won’t take off.”

Swamp rock

Tony Joe White's steadily made music for 40-plus years, mixing curious swamp rock hybrids with a foray into Michael McDonald-esque yacht rock, a loop and breakbeat-infused album of revisited hits and a brief detour into -- gasp -- disco territory!

Bennett’s turns 140

maining businesses on Main Street are not old. The old-timers fled downtown or went out of business years ago. With one exception. Bennett’s Military Supplies at Third and Main is celebrating its 140th birthday.

Conway gem

The first thing we need to tell you about Faby's, which has two locations in Conway, is the tortillas -- hot, soft tortillas that are handmade from scratch each day. They're as flavorful as a good savory pie crust, but not so much that they distract from whatever you put them with. And that's far from all Faby's has to offer.

Endorsements

The primary elections are May 18 and early voting begins Monday, May 3. Here are some of the Arkansas Times’ choices, all of them candidates in the Democratic primary:

Orval

A&E News, April 29

We got the info too late to get it in the print calendar, but Memphis rap star Yo Gotti is coming to On the Rocks on Thursday, April 29, for Chris Bowen’s regular Thirsty Thursday party. Doors open at 8 p.m., $10 early admission, show starts at midnight.

In Brief, April 29-May 1

Big-beat, dubstep — how ’bout we just start chunking subgenres at the bass and see what happens? Bassnectar twiddles his knobs for an adoring public at Revolution, 9 p.m., $17 adv.

Lincoln plays Hattie

For an all-too-brief interlude it looked like Senator Blanche Lincoln might have settled on the staple Arkansas political strategy for hard and discontented times: go after Wall Street and the financial trusts.

What's Cookin', April 29

Ferneau has unveiled a summer menu that includes items like ahi tuna nachos, a Caprese salad, buttermilk fried chicken, shrimp and grits and rack of lamb on ratatouille.

'Pot? Kettle?'

That headline is not my comment, but Republican blogger Jason Tolbert's tweet on a news report that Arkansas tax fugitive Mike Huckabee has been quoted as saying Florida Gov. Charlie Christ is "only thinking about himself" in deciding to run for U.S. Senate as an independent.

UA -- D.C. campus

Walton money talks in education. We know that, witness influence, to name two, in University of Arkansas and Little Rock School District governance and program emphasis.

Fire in the hole

I know many have been following the continuing disaster of the destroyed drilling rig in the Gulf of Mexico.

The sound of silence

Where is Sarah Palin now? Where is her band of sycophants now?

Slow-walking judges

Arkansas's senators put forward the name of P.K. Holmes of Fort Smith for a federal judgeship in mid-December. (And a good nominee it was.) Four months later, President Obama has finally nominated him for confirmation by the Senate, where Republicans have been freezing virtually every Obama judicial nominee.

Thursday To-Do: Tony Joe White

TONY JOE WHITE 9 p.m., Juanita's. $10.

New burger on the (Bill) St.

I have been pestered repeatedly this past month about the Bill Burger at Bill St. Grill and Pub.

New at Crystal Bridges

You read Leslie Newell Peacock's Arkansas Arts Notes blog don't you? If you care about art, you should, naturally.

Start your engines!

It's not too late to sign up for the 2nd Rock Candy 500, an all-ages competition for those who never outgrew a fondness for the Cub Scout Pinewood Derby races.

Poll: Halter gains ground

A new Daily Kos poll shows Sen. Blanche Lincoln still leading Bill Halter, 43-35, but by a narrower margin.

Trailer gazing: 'Winter's Bone'

The Little Rock Film Festival doesn't announce its line-up until May 11, but I gotta think they've managed to snag the much-hyped indie "Winter's Bone."

Thursday: Yo Gotti, Bassnectar, Battery: Masters of Metallica

After pulling one over on Little Rock on April Fools' Day, Memphis' Yo Gotti brings his raspy 'Cocaine Musik' to On the Rocks, doors at 8 p.m., show at midnight, $5 early admission.Big-beat, dubstep — how 'bout we just start chunking subgenres at the bass and see what happens?

We interrupt programming

The Times staff is about to depart for our Academic All-Star Team awards ceremony at UALR, so posting is likely to be non-existent for some time.

Buy one get one free tix about to go on-sale for ZZ Top

Sales must be slow for ZZ Top because, beginning on Friday at 5 p.m. and continuing through Monday at 10 a.m., lawn seats are going two for one via Ticketmaster outlets.

Tough times for teachers

A teacher who provides "distance learning" under a contract with a regional education cooperative wrote me today to say all distance learning teachers had been non-renewed because of budget cuts.

As I was saying ...

... each salvo from a U.S. Senate candidate makes me less inclined to vote for the salvo-er.

Terry's Finer Foods The Restaurant

The name's a little clunky, but everything else about Terry's Finer Foods new adjacent restaurant, called Terry's Finer Foods the Restaurant and scheduled for a soft opening beginning May 4, sounds pretty good.I talked with dining room manager Barret Seymour last week for an item that's in this week's What's Cookin'.

Impasse in school talks

Little Rock School District attorney Chris Heller's report to the Little Rock School Board on today's talks with the attorney general's office on ending the Pulaski deseg case indicates a negotiated deal is unlikely. He says there's an impasse and the federal court is likely going to have to figure it out.

Over to you

The line is open. We had a great academic all-star awards ceremony at UALR.

Editorial

This Modern World

What can Foursquare do for your business?

With all the new social media tools available, it’s hard to tell which ones have real value and which ones are just fun time-wasters. Location-based social apps--like Foursquare-allow you to “check-in” and let your friends know where you are.

The malt shop

By the time you read this, Windell Gray will be making history, as well as suds, as the proprietor of the first black-owned brewery in Arkansas.

Smart Talk, April 29

Does the name of Roosevelt still have political magic in it? Evidently Bill Halter thinks so. Arkansas voters have received recorded messages from a grandson of FDR, urging them to vote Halter.

The Televisionist, April 29

When discussing the universe, it would be hard to imagine a better guide than all-around world’s smartest dude Stephen Hawking.

Talking trash in the River Market

Like a street in any nightclub district, President Clinton Avenue has a litter problem. Unlike most entertainment districts, however, it is also the street that tourists and others stroll to get to the River Market, the Clinton Library and other venues whose business is conducted during daylight hours and draws families.

The To-Do List, April 29-May 4

Tony Joe White, Foam Fest, Toad Suck Daze, 'Aladdin and the Wonderful Lamp,' David Kimbrough Jr., Cinco de Mayo, Deer Tick

‘Planet Earth,’ Disney-fied

From the filmmaking team of Jacques Perrin and Jacques Cluzaud, the film packages stunning photography of the ocean depths for a family audience. The opportunity to absorb these majestic images on the big screen should not be missed.

New on Clinton Ave.

Great name, cool place, creative menu, some hits and some minor misses – all in all, a not-too-bad start for the newest River Market haunt.

'Frost-Nixon'

Aside from that goofy double peace-sign wave, it’s difficult to remember Nixon as anything but a head, a great bulbous mass of broad Irish nose, laser eyes and jowls, flapping to the rhythm of all the terrible things he said.

Toad Suck

Arkansas's favorite annual family celebration of drunken riverboat crews -- who long ago would stop at a tavern outside of Conway, where they'd “suck on the bottle” until they swelled “up like toads” -- returns this weekend for the 39th year, with headliners like Clint Black.

UA skulduggery

The Democrat-Gazette reported today on backroom dealing by some members of the UA Board of Trustees to ease UAF Chancellor David Gearhart into the job of UA System president (when Alan Sugg retires next year) while retaining for a time his job as chancellor of UAF.

The Dirksmeyer case UPDATE

Why would the judge dismiss a juror from the panel hearing the Nona Dirksmeyer murder case?

Don't drill, baby

The Obama administration won't authorize new domestic offshore drilling until an investigation of the burgeoning Gulf of Mexico disaster is completed.

Weekend To-Do: Toad Suck

Skillet. TOAD SUCK DAZE5 p.m., downtown Conway.

Weekend To-Do: 'Aladdin and the Wonderful Lamp'

Not the Arts Center production, but flopped up here for the LOLworthiness. ‘ALADDIN AND THE WONDERFUL LAMP' 7 p.m., Children's Theatre, Arkansas Arts Center.

Friday To-Do: Foam Fest

FOAM FEST 6 p.m., River Market Pavillions. $25 adv., $30 d.o.e. For more than a decade, this has been one of the annual spring events a goodly number of local folks await for weeks.

Weekend: Velvet Kente-607, Magic Hassle-Literature, Leon Russell

VK doesn't know how to not kill it. FRIDAY 4/30One of the most reliably mind-blowing bands anywhere plays with one of the best rappers, period, for my show pick of the night: Velvet Kente hits the Juanita's stage with 607 at 10 p.m., $5.  Sticky Fingerz brings a second night of tribute bands with the band that could have been called “Ants Marching” or “Tripping Billies,” but that would have been way too obvious, right?

Back at it

Sorry. We've had Internet problems at the Times and I spent part of the morning at AETN to film "Arkansas Week," where the lead discussion was the increasingly tiresome Democratic primary race for U.S. Senate.

Mike Huckabee's new plan to capture hearts and minds

According to CMT, Mike Huckabee is in Nashville recording a country album. No info on who's participating in the sessions, just that the project will likely be officially announced in June.

Cornering Burnett

Judge David Burnett was hobnobbing at Ciao Bacci yesterday evening at what appeared to be a fundraiser for his state senate campaign when a few unexpected guests arrived.

Brummett: Pox on both houses

But he concludes grumpily, as I did yesterday, that Sen. Blanche Lincoln is the guiltier offender in the multi-million-dollar campaign of disinformation known as the Democratic primary race for U.S. Senate.

UA System stays in LR

John Ed Anthony, chairman of the University of Arkansas Board of Trustees, has issued a statement arising from news today about efforts he's apparently leading to promote UAF Chancellor David Gearhart to president of the UA System, which is headquartered in Little Rock.

UA System stays in LR

John Ed Anthony, chairman of the University of Arkansas Board of Trustees, has issued a statement arising from news today about efforts he's apparently leading to promote UAF Chancellor David Gearhart to president of the UA System, which is headquartered in Little Rock.

Saturday To-Do: David Kimbrough Jr.

DAVID KIMBROUGH JR. 9 p.m., White Water Tavern. $10.

Sunday To-Do: Cinco de Mayo

CINCO DE MAYO10 a.m., Riverfest Amphitheatre. $5.The 12th annual celebration, sponsored by the Central Arkansas League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC), is billed as “the largest showcase of Hispanic culture in Arkansas.” That means, from morning until near dark, there'll be singing and folkloric dancing and games for kids and all sorts of delicious Mexican and Latin American grub.

Lincoln brings in Big Dog

Can Bill Clinton work some magic for Sen. Blanche Lincoln? She hopes so.

Daily Digest: David Gordon Green, Dead Weather, 'splosions

David Gordon Green goes ever forward as the Bo Jackson of comedy, jumping into the inky world of animation.

Jury split in Dirksmeyer case

Tipster says the Russellville Clarksville circuit jury in the Nona Dirksmeyer murder case reported it was hung, but the judge has ordered further deliberations.

Proctor can't run for judge

The Arkansas Supreme Court has affirmed a circuit judge's finding that Willard Proctor may not run as a write-in candidate for the judgeship from which he was removed for ethical violations.

Turn out the lights

This party's over. You're up.

Oxford American sponsoring a Big Star tribute worth driving for

The remaining members of Big Star, Jody Stephens and Posies Jon Auer and Ken Stringfellow and original bassist Andy Hummel (who left the band just before "Radio City" came out), will offer a tribute concert to Alex Chilton at the Levitt Shell in Memphis Saturday, May 15.

Who is ...

Americans for Job Security. Besides, that is, the racist corporate bastards who are vanguards of Blanche Lincoln's twilights of the goddess' disgusting last-ditch effort to keep her Senate seat at any cost.

Dirksmeyer update

The judge sent the Nona Drksmeyer murder jury home for the night in Clarksville. They're still split -- 7-5, but it's unknown which direction.

Weather news

A bad night. The state Department of Emergency Management is reporting in an interview on Channel 16 that it has reports of deaths and injuries in Van Buren County as the storm system continues to tear through the state.

Proctor goes for broke

The Arkansas Supreme Court ruled definitively Friday that Willard Proctor cannot be an Arkansas judge again as a result of his removal for ethical violations in conduct of his Pulaski County circuit court.

Speaking of elections

Todays' the deadline for Arkansas House Republicans to mail ballots to elect a new minority leader for the GOP contingent.

The Chamber giveth ...

A New York Times blogger devotes some attention to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce's current robust support of Sen. Blanche Lincoln, even on legislation on which it has disagreed.

Buckaroo hits D.C.

NEAR SMACKOVER: An Arkansas History Commission photo of oil exploration of yore near Buckaroo stomping grounds.

Lincoln condemns ad

Those racist anti-Halter ads from the Chamber of Commerce front group? Blanche Lincoln condemns them.

Mistrial in Dirksmeyer case

If you follow our headline feature you already know that the jury hung in the Nona Dirksmeyer murder case and a mistrial was declared today on the third day of deliberations.

The line is open

You're up. Feel free to heap abuse on all those states rights Republicans in Louisiana (just saw the whore-hopping Sen. David Vitter on TV, to name one) who suddenly love the federal government and want it to save them -- right now -- from the offshore oil deluge.

Dos de Mayo

The 12th annual celebration in the River Market is billed as “the largest showcase of Hispanic culture in Arkansas.” That means, from morning until near dark, there'll be singing and folkloric dancing and games for kids and all sorts of delicious Mexican and Latin American grub.

On Bro. Wooldridge's gay phobia

John Brummett's attention is drawn to 1st District congressional candidate and homophobe Tim Wooldridge's breath-taking pronouncement to the Family Council that it should be legally acceptable to fire gay people simply because of their sexual orientation, no matter how good an employee they might be.

Charter schools: Mixed results

The New York Times has an extensive report today on charter schools. It's old news, but worth repeating:

Domestic terrorism?

NY Times has details on early morning developments on an SUV found with a crudely rigged explosive in Times Square.

Can he do that?

I note that Circuit Judge Bill Pearson reportedly ordered reporters not to question jurors as they left the courthouse following the hung jury in the Nona Dirksmeyer murder case.

Can he do that?

I note that Circuit Judge Bill Pearson reportedly ordered reporters not to question jurors as they left the courthouse following the hung jury in the Nona Dirksmeyer murder case.

Bill Clinton regrets

Thanks to Libertas for pointing me to a Salon article outlining some recent remarks by Bill Clinton over regrets of some of his administration's decisions.

Televisionist: 'Stephen Hawking's Into the Universe'

STEPHEN HAWKING'S INTO THE UNIVERSE8 p.m. SundayThe Discovery ChannelWhen discussing the universe, it would be hard to imagine a better guide than all-around world's smartest dude Stephen Hawking.

Beach bummin'

So I suppose you've been wondering where I've been.  Well, frankly, I've been working.  No joke.  I'm in Orange Beach, AL working on a sea-to-table story about shrimp.  Funny thing is, I had this planned out a while back.  Had no idea there'd be an oil spill involved.

'True Blood' author featured

Charlaine Harris, the Magnolia author of the Sookie Stackhouse novels on which HBO's "True Blood," is based is the featured profile in this week's NY Times magazine.

Another senatorial election factor

Newspapers in Fort Smith and Springdale have endorsed Sen. Blanche Lincoln, she's proudly been announcing, Twittering, Facebooking, etc. Of course they did.

Over to you

It's the Sunday open line. But, a belated media note, Gannett watchers might be interested in this press disaster in Louisville for the run of the Sunday paper with Kentucky Derby results.

Talking trash in the River Market

Like a street in any nightclub district, President Clinton Avenue has a litter problem. Cigarette butts lie thick on the street any day; on Saturday and Sunday morning, the debris from partying the night before runs the gamut from butts and broken glass to blood and vomit.

Decision time

Early voting begins today for the party primaries and judicial elections (separate non-partisan elections held at the same time).

The Civil War, again

Virginia plans for a fair and balanced treatment in the 150th anniversary commemoration of the Civil War, not a glorification of the fallen Confederacy.

Earth, Wind, and Fire to Riverfest

Riverfest just announced, via Facebook, their final headliner is going to be Earth, Wind, and Fire.

Earth, Wind, and Fire to Riverfest

Riverfest just announced, via Facebook, their final headliner is going to be Earth, Wind, and Fire.

Quote of the year

Maybe of the decade. From the St. Petersburg Times:

'Hip-hop prez' gets a plug

The prestigious Chronicle of Higher of Education has a glowing profile today on a deserving subject -- Dr. Walter Kimbrough, the dynamic  president of rebounding Philander Smith College.

Presidential scholars named

This year's presidential scholars from Arkansas are Emily Foltz of Cabot High School and Aidan Baker of Huntsville High School.

Welspun to add 230 jobs

Welspun, the Indian pipemaker with a plant in Little Rock since 2009, has announced a $30 million expansion that will add 230 jobs here.

Ad roundup

Jobs. Pickups.

Speaking of ads

Here's one from Judge John Fogleman, running for state Supreme Court. He's effectively used one of the best tools available to judicial candidates -- experience.

2nd District debates

The five Democratic candidates for 2nd District Congress will meet for a debate at 6 p.m.

Arkansas Music Tent schedule released

Hayes Carll. The Arkansas Music Tent returns to Riverfest for the third year on Memorial Day Weekend with it's most impressive line-up to date.

Independents file petitions

The secretary of state said 10 independent candidates had filed petitions today to qualify for the November general election ballot in various offices, including one for U.S. Senate and two for congressional seats.

Wetlands plan progresses

WETLANDS VISION: This sketch of the wetlands project was first released in 2007. City officials announced Monday that work would begin May 17 on the wetlands project announced in 2007 for seven acres west of the Clinton Library.

None of the above

Jason Tolbert reports that David Sanders, a candidate for state House, got a surprise when he went to vote today.

WWT, Cory and the last minute show

The Rock Candy compound got some cool news through the wires this afternoon. Cory Branan the alt-country superman that's, y'know, just Cory when he's at the bar, is doing a last-minute show tonight at White Water around 10 p.m. or so.

ZZ Top must really not be selling well

Because the buy-one-get-one free deal that we told you about last week has been extended through Thursday.

AEA backs Wills

The Arkansas Education Association has endorsed Robbie Wills' Democratic primary run for Congress. He had a good legislative record, the AEA says.

Early voting begins

The secretary of state provided a 4 p.m. total for early voting so far in about two-thirds of the counties.

Wooldridge video missing

Interesting blog item here. The Family Council has taken down part of its video of Democratic congressional candidate Tim Wooldridge from its on-line voter guide.

The line's open

Had to be out of the office for a while this afternoon. Now that I'm caught up, back to you.

Viva Mexico!

I should have mentioned earlier that a big announcement is planned Wednesday for a major event in Little Rock this fall celebrating the centennial of Mexican independence.

Air fare

Well, the adventure is over, finally.  Took about 10 hours to get from Gulf Shores back home (strangely enough, about how long it would have taken if I'd have driven) via two terribly turbulent and late flights.  But you know me, ever with an eye out for a story.  So I give you this review of a burger at Samuel Adams at Hartford Jackson International Airport in Atlanta, over at Tie Dye Travels.  Enjoy. 

Air fare

Well, the adventure is over, finally.  Took about 10 hours to get from Gulf Shores back home (strangely enough, about how long it would have taken if I'd have driven) via two terribly turbulent and late flights.  But you know me, ever with an eye out for a story.  So I give you this review of a burger at Samuel Adams at Hartford Jackson International Airport in Atlanta, over at Tie Dye Travels.  Enjoy. 

To-do

Deer Tick's taken the vocal cadence, relaxed finger plucking and facial hair of John Prine, combined it with a vague grunge demeanor and found itself leading way for a nation full of young Americana acts.

Getting fracked

Pro Publica, the non-profit journalism outfit, continues its reporting on the environmental issues related to the explosion of gas exploration in shale formations (see Arkansas).

Desperate measures

President Obama has recorded a radio ad for U.S. Sen. Blanche Lincoln. I suspect it's headed for black radio stations.

Terror suspect in custody

The New York Times reports that the suspect in the attempted Times Square bombing was aboard a flight to Dubai when it was called back to the gate at Kennedy Airport and he was arrested.

How bad is the Gulf oil gusher?

Could be worse. An interesting analysis from the NY Times.

Tuesday To-Do: Deer Tick

DEER TICK 9 p.m., Sticky Fingerz. $10.

Dalai Lama to UA

The Dalai Lama, the exiled Tibetan leader, will appear at the University of Arkansas next year, Chancellor David Gearhart has announced.

Ark. home sales robust

The Arkansas Realtors Association reports strong housing sales in March, spurred in part by the coming end of the federal tax credit program.

The north country fair

A physician friend traveling in Canada sent a report on the ills of its government provided health insurance:

Anti-gay 'expert' in the spotlight

Back in 2004, the state of Arkansas produced a dubious "expert witness" to defend the indefensible -- the Mike Huckabee administration regulation adopted by a board he packed with conservative religionists that prevented gay people (or people in homes that included gay people) from adopting or being foster parents.

Money's short; Beebe taps reserves

The state report on April tax revenue isn't good. Announcing an "unexpected shortfall," Gov. Mike Beebe today announced transfers from reserves  to shore up education, medical and other services.

Burris to lead GOP

Rep. John Burris, 24, of Harrison has been elected to lead the Republican House caucus. Gerard Matthews wrote an advance on this election, which came down to Burris against Rep. Les Carnine.

Lincoln's new advertising

This is a good ad. It would have been better long before now.

Guns in church

Now it's Louisiana's turn in that particular barrel. I'd bet that this will fly through the capitol in Baton Rouge like, well, you know.

New Sookie Stackhouse book splatters on shelves

"Dead in the Family," the newest book from Charlaine Harris, the best vampire writer in Magnolia, Arkansas, was released today.Check out the first chapter here.In related news, what the hell are you people reading?  A quick familiarization of the series leads me to "vampire hotel explosions" going down?

'Frost - Nixon' for free

We've still got a few tickets left to give-away to Friday's performance of "Frost / Nixon" at The Rep. The Times is hosting a pre-party beforehand, too.

Tuesday: Ryan Bingham, Mat Mahar, The See

Fayetteville has the chance to catch Ryan Bingham (above, hilariously), the young country singer-songwriter and recent Oscar winner for Best Original Song, thanks to his track "The Weary Kind" in "Crazy Heart."

Early voting

Here's a total as of 4 p.m. today on statewide early voting. More than 13,000 -- a pittance, but not all counties are represented.

More 'True Blood'

Just came across a couple of "mini-sodes" leading up to the third season premiere on June 13.

Tonight's thread

Here's a clean slate.

Dirksmeyer juror: No case

Thanks to Tina for alerting me to the Russellville Courier's extensive interview with a juror in the Nona Dirksmeyer murder case, who revealed the jury was leaning 8-4 toward acquittal of Gary Dunn when a mistrial was declared Saturday.

Some more sushi? Sure

More sushi, sorry. Readers have pointed out to me that my assessment of sushi bars in Little Rock wouldn’t be complete until I had dined at Wasabi.

Who'll succeed Vic Snyder

Democratic contenders for 2nd District Congress met in debate tonight at UCA. About 100 turned out, sounds like, most of them Robbie Wills supporters.

The greening of War Memorial

After several years of discussion and planning, work started in March to revivify War Memorial Park with a $5.2 million investment in the midtown park. Here’s the schedule for improvements over the next year.

Orval

New on Clinton Ave.

Bill Street does burgers and more.

The year of black Republicans?

Much has been made -- today by the New York Times -- of the 32 black Republicans seeking seats in Congress this year.

Why charter schools fail

A conservative think tanker who supports school choice programs -- charters, vouchers -- might surprise you with an op-ed in today's Times.

Built to Spill coming back to LR

But not to packed to the gills Vino's. This time the '90s indie rock heroes will play The Village.August 10.

It's not as bad as you might think

So, as I mentioned in the Krazy Mike's piece last week, I'm doing some research.  I've been working on a sea-to-table piece on Gulf shrimp.  Now, there's a lot of concern right now about how the oil spill is going to raise the price of seafood and such.  I talked with John Ray Nelson with Bon Secour Fisheries this morning.  He had some enlightening thoughts about the spill and the coverage it's been getting.

It's not as bad as you might think

So, as I mentioned in the Krazy Mike's piece last week, I'm doing some research.  I've been working on a sea-to-table piece on Gulf shrimp.  Now, there's a lot of concern right now about how the oil spill is going to raise the price of seafood and such.  I talked with John Ray Nelson with Bon Secour Fisheries this morning.  He had some enlightening thoughts about the spill and the coverage it's been getting.

So it looks like 'Beth Ditto, fashion designer' was not a fleeting thing

The most famous person to ever come out of Judsonia is going another round with British retail giant Evans.On the plus-sized designs Ditto is currently crafting, Lisa Marie Peacock, head of design at Evans, said: "We have a look a decade, taking inspiration from the world's greatest icons.

Joe Nichols bows out of 'Pure County'

http://www.billboard.com/column/chart-beat-wednesday-hall-oates-come-on-1004015649.story#/charts/country-songs?tag=chdrawerhttp://www.cmt.com/news/news-in-brief/1638019/joe-nichols-says-role-in-broadway-musical-pure-country-now-unlikely.jhtml

Demonstrators for Windstream meet

Those people distributing handbills outside the Capital Hotel this morning? They were members of the Communications Workers of America, on hand for a meeting of Windstream shareholders.

NEA endorses Causey

Chad Causey, hand-picked by Rep. Marion "Good Riddance" Berry to succeed him in Congress, has won the endorsement of the National Education Association.

Be still, beating Hog hearts

Razorback message boards have been popping with the news that head football coach Bobby Petrino's $2.2 million mansion on Bridgewater Lane in East Fayetteville was listed for sale on the Lindsey and Associates website.

Techno-Squid Eats Parliament unearths a wacky old video

Techno-Squid Eats Parliament's Aaron Sarlo just posted this salvaged gem from the early 90s. It's a high concept low budget for the Little Rock band's song "She Tells Me" from its eponymous album.

Golf club loses court appeal

The state Court of Appeals today affirmed a lower court ruling that holes of the Walnut Ridge Golf Club had improperly encroached on safety zones of the Walnut Ridge Airport and had to be removed, without compensation to the club.

Charter school changes site

The proposed Little Rock Urban Collegiate Public Charter for Young Men has proposed to open the school in a different location.

Ark. judge confirmed

One down and three to go. The Senate today confirmed President Obama's nomination of Appeals Court Judge Price Marshall of Jonesboro (pictured recently with Sen. Blanche Lincoln, who advocated his appointment) to a vacancy on the federal district court bench in Arkansas.

Cinco de Mayo: Velvet Kente, The Blue Party, Bang Tango

The new kid in the River Market, Bill St., hosts "A Very Funky Cinco de Mayo" with trumpet jazz by Rodney Block and the Real Music Lovers, the instrumental, experimental Mammoth Orange and the consistently brilliant Velvet Kente, 8 p.m.Town Pump has a free, happy hour set by Puddin'head at 5:30 p.m., then celebrates the holiday with New Orleans jams by The Blue Party, 10 p.m., $5.

PARTying for Peg

The aluminum fiddler and her eight square dancers poised at the south entrance to the Historic Arkansas Museum greet visitors as engagingly as Peg Smith would have. Join the party, they say — starting with the “pARTy for Peg.”
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