IT WAS A GOOD WEEK FOR …
The CLINTON LIB-RARY. Some 25,000 people stood in long lines to get a free look at the new facility on the weekend after Thanksgiving.
The RIVER MARKET. You could build up a powerful hunger and thirst standing in those library lines.
EMPTY TALK. Ruffles and flourishes (and plenty of headlines, which is the point) for Gov. Mike Huckabee’s support for music and arts education in schools. A honking splat of a mistuned tuba for his failure to develop a state budget that will pay for it.
QUIGLEY STADIUM. We’re Central High fans and happy they advanced in the state football playoffs with a win over Springdale at the Tigers’ venerable home field. But it was particularly fun to see the old inner city stadium rocking with a capacity crowd of 15,000.
CARL REDUS. He easily won a runoff to become the first black mayor of Pine Bluff.
IT WAS A BAD WEEK FOR …
SCHOOLS. They need $2.2 billion worth of immediate repairs and $4.5 billion for facilities, all told. Legislators are worried more about the cost than the sorry facilities to which we are willing to entrust our kids. The court-mandated fix doesn’t seem likely to get done any time soon.
WAL-MART. It opened the Christmas season with flat sales. Maybe poor folks aren’t doing as well as the president insists they are. Or maybe you can’t be everything to everybody and other niche retailers, several of whom reported better results, have figured out ways to compete with the Arkansas behemoth.
The HOGS. LSU found a quarterback and trounced the UA, ending Houston Nutt’s unbeaten streak at War Memorial Stadium and leaving the Pigs with a losing season. Nutt hints that coaching changes might be in order. Of his assistants, of course, not the well-paid head man.
Hog fans just can't quit blaming the refs for the NCAA men's basketball tournament loss to North Carolina. Now the Arkansas Senate has gotten in on the act, with this resolution introduced by Democratic Sen. Keith Ingram and getting bipartisan co-sponsorship from that brutish and short sandlot roundball player, Republican Sen. Jeremy Hutchinson.
IndieWire breaks news long whispered downtown — a more ambitious successor to the Little Rock Film Festival is in the works, with backing from writer/director Jeff Nichols, a Little Rock native. His "Loving" has won wide acclaim recently.