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Contact(s):Gretchen Hall
Director of Merchandising & Communications
Little Rock Convention & Visitors Bureau

Shannon Light
River Market

Friday, August 3, 2007

Downtown Little Rock is the hot place to be this summer

River Market, Statehouse and Robinson all see increase in visitors

LITTLE ROCK (August 3, 2007) – As a result of local, national and international visitors, Little Rock’s attractions as well as hotels and restaurants are deeming this season a successful one, and are very optimistic about the remaining weeks before Labor Day.

According to Shannon Light, River Market Manager, the River Market is as busy as it has ever been.

“We had more than 86,000 visitors in the River Market Hall in June alone,” Light said. “That’s more than one-and-a-half times that of last June, and we still have a month’s-worth of summer activities for people to enjoy in the River Market.” Light also noted that more than 230,000 visitors came though the River Market Hall from May through the end of July.

Downtown Little Rock has proven to be a popular destination among this summer’s travelers, as many attractions and businesses are already reporting substantial increases in activity during this summer’s tourism season.

Little Rock continues to be a popular site for summer conventions and seminars. Travelers from across the country, and for some occasions throughout the world, were drawn to the Capital City’s Convention Center from May through July.

“We have seen a substantial increase in the number of visitors to Little Rock,” said Dan O’Byrne, Chief Executive Officer of the Little Rock Convention and Visitors Bureau. “I believe Little Rock is becoming a true destination with visitors enjoying our fine restaurants, shops, galleries and museums. The River Market District is always a highlight for families, business travelers and conventioneers.”

Several events and new attractions have drawn the attention of visitors from all levels, with a few standing out in particular for 2007.

In June, the American Taekwondo Association opened the doors to Downtown Little Rock’s newest international attraction, the H. U. Lee International Gate & Garden, a $1.7 million hand-crafted edifice and authentic garden of Korean foliage. In MacArthur Park, a new Korean War Memorial was dedicated before a crowd of 1,000 visitors from all over the world.

The Clinton Presidential Center and Park continues to draw visitors from around the glove, across the nation and every county in Arkansas. In addition, the University of Arkansas Clinton School of Public Service has hosted public lectures with internationally prominent speakers and timely topics.

For lighter fare, visitors and locals alike have enjoyed The Full Monty at the Arkansas Repertory Theatre; exhibits at the Arkansas Arts Center, Museum of Discovery, Historic Arkansas Museum, MacArthur Museum of Arkansas Military History, Old State House Museum, and the Little Rock Zoo.

Riverfront Park continues to grow in popularity as a destination for fun events including playing host to concerts, special events like Riverfest, and a record-setting summer for Movies in the Park. And there’s always the continued success of the Farmers’ Market which has been a boon to the River Market since its inception.

Remaining Summer Weeks Provide Lots of Exciting Events for Visitors and Locals
River Market, Clinton School and Museum of Discovery are a few key highlights

In the remaining weeks of summer, downtown Little Rock will play host to a number of fun and exciting events. These events cater to a diverse audience looking for an enjoyable experience in downtown Little Rock.

“A Piece of My Soul: Quilts by Black Arkansans,” Daily, Old State House Museum.

“Farmers’ Market”, Every Tuesday and Saturday, River Market Pavilions

“Art at the Market,” Every Friday, Tower Plaza, 8:30 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.

“Step Back Saturdays,” Every Saturday through September 1, Historic Arkansas Museum, 10:00 a.m – 4:00 p.m.

“Ice Days,” August 4, Little Rock Zoo, 9:00 a.m.

“Chris Daughtry in Concert,” August 6, Robinson Center, 8:00 p.m.

“Panel on International Legal Systems featuring representatives from Bosnia, Ghana, Libya, Malaysia, Serbia, Suriname, Bulgaria, Cape Verde, India, Ukraine and Zambia,” August 8, Clinton School of Public Service, 12:00 p.m.

“Movies in the Park: People’s Choice Night,” August 8, Riverfest Amphitheatre, 8:00p.m. – 11:00 p.m.

“Imam Wallace Deen Mohammed, son of the late Elijah Mohammed,” August 10, Clinton School of Public Service, 12:00 p.m.

“2nd Friday Art Night,” August 10, River Market District galleries, 5:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.

“Documenting a Not So Distant Past,” Daily beginning August 10 thought November 4, Arkansas Arts Center, Sam Strauss, Sr. Gallery.

“Voices at the River,” August 15 – 18, Arkansas Repertory Theatre and other locations

“Cruisin’ in the Rock,” August 17, River Market Pavilions, 6:00p.m. – 9:00 p.m.

“Art and Social Change with playwrights Lynn Nottage and Luis Valdez,” August 17, part of the Arkansas Repertory Theatre’s Voices at the River at the Clinton School of Public Service, 12:00 p.m.

“Bob Barnett, Washington D.C. attorney and presidential debate advisor,” August 21, Clinton School of Public Service, 6:00 p.m.

“Marie Tillman, widow of former NFL star and U.S. Army Ranger Pat Tillman,” August 22, Clinton School of Public Service, 6:00 p.m.

“Breakfast with Small Carnivores,” August 25, Little Rock Zoo.

“River Market Cooking Club,” August 25, Bill and Margaret Clark Room, 9:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.

For more information on these events and all of the great things to do in Little Rock visit



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