A venture to this state park is on the must-do list for many, the park being the only spot in North America where you can dig for diamonds and other gemstones and keep your finds.
*GET YOUR CAN ON: The folks from the Root Cafe will be hosting a canning and food preservation workshop at Eggshells Kitchen Co. on August 21 at 6 p.m. Canning is a great way to keep the flavors of summer around during those cold winter months when it feels like spring will never come. Registration is $50, and the folks from the Root promise to give the most up-to-date methods of this old-fashioned art. Eggshells Kitchen Co. is located at 2100 Kavanaugh in Little Rock.
*GARDEN VARIETY ROCK: Local watering hole White Water Tavern is hosting a benefit concert for Dunbar Community Gardens on Thursday, August 16 at 9 p.m. featuring the Winston Family Orchestra with Tsar Bomba and Peckerwolf. Admission is $5 with all proceeds going to the garden project. I've been lucky enough to have eaten a lot of veggies from Dunbar this year, and the Chester Street project is one of my favorites in town. This is also a great opportunity to try White Water's new menu.
*CHEESE AND WINE: Boulevard Bread Company is holding a wine and cheese tasting at their South Main location on Saturday, August 25 from 4:30 - 6 p.m. Boulevard's resident expert Blair Graves will be providing samples and information about several American cheeses and wines. Space is limited for this one, and you can call Christina at 663-5951 for reservations or more information. Boulevard is known for both the quality cheese they serve and the quality cheese they make, so this is sure to be an exciting event.
*STEAK YOUR CLAIM: The 2nd Annual Great Steak Cook-off will be held Saturday, August 18 starting at 4 p.m. at the Conway Expo Center (2505 E. Oak Street) in Conway. There's still room for teams to compete for seared beef supremacy, and carnivores can purchase a steak from the competitors for only $8. A portion of the proceeds from the event will go to Arkansas Children's Hospital, and the meat will be available on a first-come, first-serve basis.
*CORNBREAD FESTIVAL: Lastly, the Arkansas Cornbread Festival is gearing up for their second annual event on November 3 by launching a new website to promote the celebration of all things cornbread. If you haven't been down Main Street lately, you're missing the new mural featuring the festival's new mascot, Cosmo Cornbread, a singing anthropomorphic pan of the Southern delicacy. Last year's festival planned for 800 visitors and received over 2,600 — so hopes are high for continued success this year.