Happenings! Blog

National Travel and Tourism Week 2016

Inaugural Argenta Irish Festival to follow St. Patrick's Day Parade March 12

Sudduth joins North Little Rock CVB as Sales & Marketing Director

North Little Rock Convention & Visitors Bureau announces Restaurant Month 2016

Five things to do over Thanksgiving weekend

Five central Arkansas Halloween events for adults

North Little Rock welcomes new Hampton Inn near McCain Mall

5 quick ideas for 4th of July weekend in North Little Rock

North Little Rock celebrates National Travel & Tourism Week

Central Arkansas attractions partner for Family Fun Days 2015

Arkansas Inland Maritime Museum boasts economic impact of more than $1 million


National Travel and Tourism Week 2016

(April 27, 2016) - As part of National Travel and Tourism Week, the North Little Rock Convention & Visitors Bureau will be offering refreshments the week of May 2, 2016, to all visitors that stop by the Visitors Information Center in Burns Park (Off I-40 exit #150). Tourism is a massive industry in Arkansas, and particularly in North Little Rock. The following infographics show the economic impact of travel and tourism to our city. National Travel and Tourism Week is a chance to stop and thank all of those who come to our city, who are locally employed by the industry and to educate the public about the economic effects of travel. #NTTW16























Inaugural Argenta Irish Festival to follow St. Patrick's Day Parade March 12

(February 29, 2016) - The inaugural Argenta Irish Festival will be held in the Argenta Plaza at 520 Main Street in North Little Rock on Saturday, March 12, from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. following the 17th Annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade.

“The festival will be fun for all ages, and we hope everyone will stay in Argenta afterwards to enjoy our restaurants, bars and entertainment venues,” said Donna Hardcastle, executive director of the Argenta Downtown Council.

The free festival will have live music a Kid Zone with arts and crafts. A beer garden will feature Lost Forty Brewing, Stone’s Throw Brewing, Diamond Bear Brewing, Flyway Brewing, Damgoode Brews and Bubba Brew’s Brewing Company. Food trucks will include Agrilla the Bun, Loblolly Creamery and BlackHound Bar-B-Q. For more information about the festival, go to Diamond Bear Brewing Company’s Facebook page.

The Irish parade starts at 1 p.m. in Little Rock at 3rd and Rock Streets and concludes at 6th and Main Streets in Argenta. Clowns, floats, antique cars, Irish wolfhounds and more will be part of the parade, hosted by the Irish Cultural Society of Arkansas. For more information about the parade, visit IrishArkansas.com. 


Sudduth joins North Little Rock CVB as Sales & Marketing Director

(February 16, 2016) - The North Little Rock Convention & Visitors Bureau has hired Scott Sudduth for its new position of Sales & Marketing Director.

Sudduth is responsible for managing the sales and marketing team, training and development, and developing and implementing marketing and sales plans.

Prior to working for the North Little Rock CVB, Sudduth was destination brand trainer for the Little Rock Convention & Visitors Bureau and state coordinator for the Arkansas Hospitality Association’s “Welcome to Arkansas” program. For twenty years, Sudduth served as director of marketing for Performance Food Group. Sudduth is a certified meeting professional (CMP), graduated from the Little Rock Leadership Institute and is a certified instructor for ServSafe. He was chosen as a “meeting professional to watch” by Convention South Magazine and was inducted into the Arkansas Hospitality Association’s Hall of Fame.


North Little Rock Convention & Visitors Bureau announces Restaurant Month 2016

(Nov. 3, 2015) ­– The North Little Rock Convention & Visitors Bureau, in partnership with the Arkansas Foodbank and the University of Arkansas at Little Rock Athletic Department, announced today that North Little Rock Restaurant Month will kick off January 1, 2016.

The newest promotion part of Restaurant Month is the inaugural “Dine Off”, set for January 22 – February 4. Select restaurants throughout North Little Rock will be collecting monetary donations on behalf of the Arkansas Foodbank in a friendly competition for the North Little Rock Dine Off 2016 Golden Plate. A list of participating restaurants and special promotions during the Dine Off are available at NLRRestaurantMonth.com.

“The local restaurants have really rallied together to help the community,” said Bob Major, Executive Director of the North Little Rock CVB. “We hope people will enjoy a nice meal in North Little Rock, support the Arkansas Foodbank at a time when supplies are low and experience family fun at a Little Rock Trojans game.”

The North Little Rock CVB is also repeating last year’s popular UALR basketball promotion. For the whole month of January, people are also encouraged to bring receipts from any North Little Rock restaurant to the Visitors Information Center in Burns Park or the North Little Rock Chamber of Commerce to receive free tickets to the Feb. 6 Little Rock Trojans basketball game.

Throughout the month of January, the North Little Rock CVB will be giving away weekly prizes in its #EatNLR Foodie Contest for social media posts featuring photos from North Little Rock restaurants and using the hashtag #EatNLR. Contest guidelines are available here: NLRRestaurantMonth.com/eatnlr-foodie-contest.

“After the holidays it is always important to remember that hunger is never seasonal,” says Arkansas Foodbank CEO Rhonda Sanders. “By participating in the Dine Off 2016, you are helping create a hunger-free community and making a difference in the lives of thousands of families, children and seniors who are dealing with food insecurity.”

For more information about North Little Rock Restaurant Month, visit NLRRestaurantMonth.com or call (501)758-1424.


Five things to do over Thanksgiving weekend

(Nov. 3, 2015) - You have family in town for the holidays, so what do you do after the feast? Show them some fun things to do around town, of course!

1. A Fertle Holiday, an original two-act comedy for the whole family, opens at The Joint Theater & Coffeehouse on Thanksgiving weekend. The Fertle Family reunites in the tiny town of Dumpster, Arkansas, and struggles to entertain their rich relatives from San Diego. The Main Thing comedy trio brings the quirky family to life by portraying all of the relatives and townspeople. Catch this comedy on Friday or Saturday night at 8 p.m.

2. The Arkansas Inland Maritime Museum and USS Razorback submarine will be open for tours Friday and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., and Sunday from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. There are discounts for children under 12, seniors and military. Don’t worry about the cold; the submarine and museum are both heated and the perfect place to spend an afternoon with the family.

3. As you’re reading this, seats available for the Thanksgiving Day river cruise on the Mark Twain Riverboat are filling up. Including a traditional Thanksgiving feast, the two-hour cruise boards at 12:30 p.m. and requires reservations by calling (501)372-5777.

4. Visit the Red Door Gallery's Arkansas “Zany” Holidays on Nov. 28. You are invited to a live painting demonstration featuring Tod Crites. Have him personalize your art purchase! Refreshments and holiday cheer. Complimentary gift-wrap, as always!

5. And, of course, for all of you shopaholics, start your Black Friday shopping at McCain Mall and Lakewood Village Shopping Center.


Five central Arkansas Halloween events for adults

(September 28, 2015) - When Halloween rolls around, it's all about the kids. Or is it? Adults can have fun, too, at these cool events going on in and around North Little Rock.

1. New this year, Wild River Country is offering “WILDS of Wild River Country” for souls willing to brave horrifying mutants, monsters and maniacs. Three terrifying haunted mazes, not recommended for children under the age of 13. 

2. Light-hearted fun is to be had at the annual Monster Bash hosted by Argenta Community Theater on Thursday, Oct. 29, at 7 p.m. Jack Skellington will host with four amazing bands, a magician, cash bar, silent auction and delectable delights from Good Food by Ferneau.

3. The Inaugural Maker Ball, hosted this year at the Capitol Hotel, is a grownup costume party where your imagination takes center stage! Every guest is encouraged to make his or her costume. Live music, food and open bar. All proceeds will benefit the Arkansas Regional Innovation Hub, a nonprofit organization that provides cutting-edge educational and entrepreneurial support to develop, attract and retain talent and to build our state’s economy.

4. For those that just want a chill Halloween evening, The Joint Theater and Coffeehouse will have improv comedy by The Joint Venture and music by The Big Dam Horns. Cover is only $10, costumes are encouraged.

5. The Arkansas Reapers Haunted House is a maze of 20 scenes with live actors off Crystal Hill Road in North Little Rock. 


North Little Rock welcomes new Hampton Inn near McCain Mall

(September 24, 2015) - Hilton Worldwide (NYSE: HLT) announced the opening of Hampton Inn by Hilton North Little Rock McCain Mall, its newest property to join Hampton by Hilton, the global brand of more than 2,000 mid-priced Hampton Inn by Hilton, Hampton Inn & Suites by Hilton and Hampton by Hilton hotels. The 76-room hotel is located at 3629 McCain Boulevard in North Little Rock. 

Those familiar with North Little Rock will remember a previous Hampton Inn open since September 1999 at 4801 W. Commercial, recently sold to Wyndham Hotel Group. Fortunately for North Little Rock, the same management has opened this newer facility and will carry forward the same customer service that guests have come to expect.

“Our new location is convenient for guests looking to shop, dine and explore the central Arkansas area,” said Angela Crouse, general manager. “Guests can take a trolley ride through our historic neighborhoods, explore the local scenery at the Arkansas River Trail, or see the Old Mill from the classic movie Gone With the Wind, all within just a short drive from our doorstep. We are excited to welcome visitors to the special sites and unique history of North Little Rock.”

Hampton Inn by Hilton North Little Rock McCain Mall offers amenities, such as free Wi-Fi, a 24-hour business center with complimentary printing, a fitness center and an indoor heated saltwater pool. The hotel also provides free On the House hot breakfast as well as Hampton’s On the Run™ Breakfast Bags, available Monday through Friday. 

The new hotel features the Perfect Mix Lobby, designed as an extension of the guestroom with a variety of seating and lighting options for both leisure and business travelers. Additionally, the hotel contains TREATS, a 24-hour convenience store filled with snacks, toiletries and drinks for purchase. Guestrooms are equipped with the brand’s signature Clean and fresh Hampton bed®, LCD flat-screen TV, fridge and coffeemaker. 

Hampton by Hilton team members proudly exhibit a unique culture described as Hamptonality. This term describes each hotel’s approach to friendly customer service and anticipation of guests’ needs and providing travelers with helpful suggestions about area attractions, historical facts and fun things to do around town. Additionally, hotels are infused with local photography and artwork, highlighting each property’s connection and support to its own community.

Hampton Inn by Hilton North Little Rock McCain Mall participates in Hilton HHonors®, the only hotel loyalty program that allows members to earn Points & Miles® on the same stay and No Blackout Dates on reward stays. HHonors members always get our lowest price with our Best Price Guarantee, along with HHonors Points, digital check-in and no booking fees only when they book directly through Hilton. For more information or to make reservations, please visit Hampton Inn by Hilton North Little Rock McCain Mall or call 1(501)537-7700. 

Read more about Hampton by Hilton at www.hampton.com and www.news.hampton.com.

Hampton Inn - McCain

3629 McCain Boulevard
North Little Rock, AR 72116
Phone: (501)537-7700
Fax: (501)537-7600
NEW: opened September 2015. Recognized as one of the top 6 Hampton Inns in the Americas in 2016 with the prestigious Connie Award.

Hampton Inn by Hilton North Little Rock McCain Mall offers amenities, such as free Wi-Fi, a 24-hour business center...
Read More »


5 quick ideas for 4th of July weekend in North Little Rock

(July 2, 2015) - So you have a three-day weekend, some of which it may rain...but you'll be too busy having fun to care. Here are five ideas - outside and inside - for how to spend your 4th of July weekend in central Arkansas.Pops on the River, Kurt Lunsford

1. Swim, of course! And not just swim...slide, float, splash and more at Wild River Country.

2. Fireworks are a must. Whether you're watching from Dickey-Stephens Park or USS Razorback submarine, the views of the downtown fireworks are spectacular on the riverfront. After the fireworks, enjoy live music by the Big Dam Horns at The Joint Comedy Theater. Show starts at 9:30 p.m. 

3. Enjoy a summer blockbuster like Inside Out (or Magic Mike XXL, we don't judge) at the brand new Regal McCain Mall Stadium 12 & RPX

4. Friday night, enjoy a comedy show at The Joint. Their latest, Hognado!, is exactly what it sounds like - plenty of fun with a tornado that hurls pigs.

5. Take the time to relax and ride the trolley. Stop at the Clinton Presidential Center to see their Dinosaurs exhibit - for FREE on Friday!


North Little Rock celebrates National Travel & Tourism Week

(May 1, 2015) - During the week of May 4 – May 9, 2015, the North Little Rock Convention & Visitors Bureau will celebrate National Travel and Tourism Week with refreshments and giveaways to thank visitors at the Visitors Information Center located at 1 Eldor Johnson Drive, North Little Rock. On Tuesday, May 5, everyone is encouraged to wear red for U.S. Travel Rally Day.

Travel impacted North Little Rock in the following ways in 2014:
• Travel-generated payroll: $79,416,021.00

• Travel-generated employment/jobs: 3,244
• Travel-generated state tax: $15,970,935.00
• Travel-generated local tax: $7,146,578.00
• Visitors (person trips): 1,426,463

The Visitors Information Center assisted 15,093 visitors from 51 states and 22 countries. While the majority of visitors came from Arkansas, other states topping the list are Oklahoma, Louisiana, Texas and Tennessee. Economic impact figures were compiled by the Arkansas Department of Parks and Tourism’s Division of Research. North Little Rock represents approximately a quarter of the total Pulaski County numbers. Local residents are also encouraged to stop by and pick up a copy of the Dining and Coupon Guide for discounts to North Little Rock restaurants and attractions.

Central Arkansas attractions partner for Family Fun Days 2015

(April 22, 2015) – Five central Arkansas attractions – Magic Springs, Wild River Country, Little Rock Zoo, Arkansas Inland Maritime Museum and Arkansas Travelers – along with Hiland Dairy are partnering for Family Fun Days, May 30 and May 31, 2015, to kick off the summer season and encourage families to spend time together.

“Spending time with the family doesn’t necessarily require an expensive getaway,” said Mike Flagg, general manager of Hiland Dairy. “There’s plenty of fun options for the whole family right here in central Arkansas. We’re hoping everyone will take advantage of a beautiful May weekend to get out and enjoy some time with their families.”

Family Fun Days Discounts (May 30 – May 31, 2015, only)
• Magic Springs: $10 off each ticket for a family of four
• Wild River Country: $80 for a family of four
• Little Rock Zoo: $2 off admission
• USS Razorback, Arkansas Inland Maritime Museum: $5 for adults, $4 for kids
• Arkansas Travelers, Dickey-Stephens Park: 10% off anything in the gift shop
• All locations – Two for $1 on Hiland Dairy ice cream treats

Families can take advantage of the offers both May 30 and May 31, giving them the opportunity to visit multiple attractions over the weekend. Magic Springs at 1701 E. Grand Avenue in Hot Springs offers rides for kids, families and thrill-seekers. Wild River Country at 6820 Crystal Hill Road in North Little Rock is Arkansas’ largest water park. Located at 1 Zoo Drive in Little Rock, the Little Rock Zoo features more than 700 animals that will awe and inspire the whole family. Tour a real, World War II-era submarine, USS Razorback, at the Arkansas Inland Maritime Museum at 120 Riverfront Park Drive in North Little Rock. Dickey-Stephens Park at 400 W. Broadway St. in North Little Rock hosts the Arkansas Travelers minor league baseball team.

For more information about Family Fun Days, follow @FamilyFunDaysAR on Facebook.


Arkansas Inland Maritime Museum boasts economic impact of more than $1 million

(January 27, 2015) - Arkansas Inland Maritime Museum (AIMM), home to World War II submarine USS Razorback, at 120 Riverfront Drive in North Little Rock reported an estimated economic impact of $1,003,800 in 2014.

“Locals drive by the submarine every day and don’t realize just how many people it attracts,” said Allison Hiblong, Director of Operations. “Arkansas residents and visitors from all over the nation and the world come to see the submarine. Last year alone, we had visitors from 50 states and 81 countries.”

2014 Attendance Summary

  • Total Attendance: 21,664
  • Individual Visitors: 15,557
  • Groups: 3,329
  • Birthdays: 155
  • Overnight Stays: 552
  • Other Events: 2,071

AIMM relies on volunteers to assist in submarine maintenance and give tours. Donating more than 4,500 hours in 2014, most of the volunteers are submarine veterans. The museum is currently in the middle of a capital campaign to bring USS Hoga from California and to expand the museum space. Aside from the submarine, AIMM hosts exhibits dedicated to America’s rich naval history in its museum. Currently the museum features artifacts from USS Arkansas and the McClellan-Kerr Arkansas River Navigation System. Free lesson plans, school group tours and teacher training are offered as well. 

AIMM is located at 120 Riverfront Park Drive in North Little Rock, Arkansas, one block south of Verizon Arena. During the winter, the submarine is open for tours Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays. Call (501)371-8320 or visit AIMMuseum.org for more information about the museum.