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Inaugural Arkansas Heritage Festival to be held this weekend

Word of the day: Heritage

1. Property that descends to an heir.

2. A. Something transmitted by or acquired from a predecessor.

B. Tradition.

Merriam-Webster. (n.d.). Heritage. In dictionary. Retrieved August 24, 2021, from

Festival Flyer

“The First Annual Arkansas Heritage Festival” held in Hot Springs Village will be a time of gathering and celebration of the many things that make Arkansas so magnificent and rich in history. Whether a native or new-comer, there will be much to learn at this free two-day festival on Aug. 27 and 28.

These two days will be packed full of all things Arkansas presented by historians, writers, artists, music and food and product vendors on Hot Springs Village's DeSoto Blvd. It all starts with an opening by Lt. Governor Tim Griffin at 9:45 a.m. Friday in the Woodlands Auditorium, 1101 DeSoto Blvd.

The full schedule and list of vendors can be found here.

A few schedule highlights include:

On Friday:

• Holly Hope's Reading Cemetery Symbolism from 10-11 a.m.

• Janis Kearney's My Arkansas Journey from 11 a.m.-noon.

• Dr. Sam Taggart's Arkansas' Country Doctors from noon-1 p.m.

• Terry Diggs's Folklore and Songs of the Ouachitas from 1-2 p.m.

• Rex Nelson's State of Disaster from 2-3 p.m.

• Arkansas PBS' Dreamland from 3-4 p.m.

On Saturday:

• Linda Pennington Black's The Negro Baseball League and Arkansas from 9-10 a.m.

• David Hill's The Vapors: America's Forgotten Capital of Vice from 10-11 a.m.

• Charlie Moore and Ken Tillery's Mountain Music and and Its Roots from 11 a.m.-noon.

• Lisa Carey's Arkansas' Heritage in Quartz from noon-1 p.m.

• Liz Robbins's Hot Springs' Tourism Heritage from 1-2 p.m.

• Butch Bennett's Hot Springs Village, Set in Stone from 2-3 p.m.

Other things not to miss include internationally renowned local artist Longhua Xu's exhibit "The Soul of Arkansas," which is a tribute to the America he is "now part of;" and the HSV's Veteran's Memorial, which is a "community effort honoring all branches of America’s Armed Forces."

On Saturday, there will also be a live concert by Nashville artist Gil Grand, The Grand Tour: A Tribute to Legends of Country Music. The $25 tickets to the show can be purchase here, or at the door.

For anyone who does not have access to HSV, pre-registration for a gate pass will be required, and can be done here.

The festival is hosted by the Lifelong Learning Institute through a grant from The Arkansas Department of Heritage. LLI Executive Director Larry Wilson said they expect 4-5,000 attendees for this statewide event. Masking will be encouraged.

"We’re going to be focusing on the arts and crafts of Arkansas," Wilson said. "We’re going to have Arkansas music, we’re going to have speakers that talk about the history of Arkansas, we’re going to have Arkansas food … we’re going to be highlighting a lot of Arkansas products and things like that.

"The primary purpose is just to introduce people to all things Arkansas."

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