Wednesday December 11, 2013
The winter weather has set many local groups, including the Salvation Army, back in donations. Last weekend would have been a big donation weekend for their Angel Tree and Red Kettle campaigns, but because of the ice, nobody was out.
It is not too late to adopt an angel. This weekend is the last weekend to return gifts for the Angel Tree. You can pick up an Angel at Park Plaza Mall, McCain Mall and most local Wal-Mart stores.
Wednesday December 11, 2013
For holiday events, this Saturday is the day you can walk through the lights in Burns Park. You can also visit the Clinton Center to have your photo with Santa. The annual downtown Christmas parade is Saturday too.
There is quite a bit going on, so check the complete list of holiday events for more info.
This Thursday, there is a unique shopping event at Boswell Mourot Gallery. The animals at the Little Rock Zoo have made several paintings that are up for auction and you can just buy ornaments for your tree painted by them. They make great gifts for the animal lover that has everything (and the ornaments aren't the expensive). More info.
- Moonlight Madness at The Promenade at Chenal - The perfect time to finish up your shopping, the Promenade has free hot cocoa and refreshments and lots of sales the 13th-14th.
- The Nog Off at Historic Arkansas Museum - A fun eggnog competition at Historic Arkansas Museum from 5-8p.m.
- Encounter and Eagle at the Arkansas Nature Center - At the downtown nature center, find out eagle wintering in Arkansas and learn to identify a bald eagle.
- Bike Hike Historic Neighborhoods Bicycle Tour - A three-hour bicycle tour of the city. More info.
- Tim Ernst at the Arkansas Nature Center - Famed Arkansas nature photographer Tim Ernst presents "Buffalo River Beauty." He will present from 2-3 p.m. and sign books from 1:30-2 p.m. and 3-3:30 p.m. Tim will be available to sign books
Tuesday December 10, 2013
Hope everyone is finally thawing out. The big ice storm cancelled some of the biggest events of the holiday season. A few have been rescheduled.
The annual Big Jingle Jubilee Holiday Parade has been rescheduled for 2 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 14.
The Capitol lighting ceremony normally follows the parade, but the Secretary of State has said that the ceremony will not be held this year. The lights were turned on this weekend, however, and you can still go visit the large tree (the largest real Christmas tree in Arkansas).
This is the fourth time the since its inception 75 years ago that there will be no lighting ceremony. The Capitol remained dark at Christmas two years during World War II, and it was lit without ceremony during a major construction project in more recent history.
Wednesday December 4, 2013
Everyone is buzzing about Conway's Christmas tree. Most people were criticizing the cost of the tree. It cost the city over $130,000. Funds for it came from Conway's prepared food tax (the "hamburger tax"). It's an artificial tree that the city says it should last 10 years. Over 10 years, is $130,000 too much? They hope the tree will bring some Christmas shoppers to Conway.
Those who aren't talking about the price of the tree are talking about the size of the tree. It might be the largest artificial "tree" in the Midwest. There is some contention about what is considered a tree, but I am with those only counting "trees" with artificial limbs. It wins if you count that. Most of the trees that are larger are made of metal and lights only. The Conway tree is 54-feet tall, and 27-feet wide. It has 19,000 lights and ornaments on it.
There are more photos below the break. That flash of pink in the photo is me, shown for scale (you can click to get a bigger shot). To be honest, I was a bit disappointed in it. It's a pretty cool tree, and the lights and ornaments are neat, but I'm not sure it lived up to the hype. I do think it will be a cool place to get some family photos and show your kids the wonders of Christmas
If you want to see a really cool tree closer to home, head to the Promenade on Chenal. They have a neat tree that has a Trans-Siberian Orchestra-like light show to music. I'll post photos later this week.
If you want to see the Conway tree, it's in downtown Conway, on Oak Street (in Rogers Plaza, the GPS address is 900 Oak Street, but it's right as you enter the historic downtown area).