Meet Filmmaker Taylor Feltner

When I first found out I'd be covering the LRFF, I asked my movie snob friends for their recommendations and they all immediately told me to see Man Shot Dead by Russellville native Taylor Feltner. The documentary follow's Taylor's effort to solve the mystery surrounding his grandfather's murder.

Photo courtesy of Taylor Feltner

Photo courtesy of Taylor Feltner

Now an LA resident, Taylor shared a few of his "most do's" when he heads back to the natural state.

What is your must visit place when you come back home to Little Rock? I mostly spend time up in Fayetteville with my family, but when I'm down in Little Rock I always want to be in the River Market area. It has everything you need from great bars to amazing restaurants, and I love seeing the trolley go by! 

What local dish/eatery do you most look forward to enjoying when you're in town? I absolutely have to have BBQ. Great BBQ is so hard to come by in Los Angeles, so I have to take advantage of eating it while I'm here. Some friends of mine and I went to Whole Hog last night. It was so delicious, and I love all the different sauces. I bought a bag of their BBQ rub, which I'm going to use when grilling out this summer.

Leave work a little early today and see Man Shot Dead at 4 p.m. at the Arkansas Historic Museum or catch the replay at 10:30 a.m. Sunday. 


Little Rock Film Festing

Things have been a little quiet around the ilovelittlerockAR.com offices (read: my couch), but we are shaking things up a bit to do a little seeing/be seen this week at the Little Rock Film Festival. 

From instagram.com/lrff

From instagram.com/lrff

On tonight's agenda:

Valley Inn - Emily Mason, a New Jersey college student, finds herself in a dusty dying small southern town, a thousand miles from home, selling Christian books door-to-door for the summer. Through a series of misadventures in “the Bookfield,” and her growing friendships with the endearing and often comical local residents, Emily begins to discover what is most valuable in life, at the Valley Inn. Tuesday, May 13, 8.30pm, CALS Ron Robinson Theater, 100 RiverMarket Avenue, Little Rock, Arkansas 72201 (repeat show Thursday, 1:45 pm at The Rep). 

Then, of course, we'll head to the post party at Stickz to hear some great tunes from Randall Shreve, Salty Dogs, Amy Garland and some other fine folks.

Stay tuned for more #LRFF2014 news, reviews photos and more. Now accepting agenda suggestions for the rest of the week! 

Purchase your passes or individual tickets at littlerockfilmfestival.org. See you there.

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LANTERNS! Outdoor Winter Festival

This blog post is part of an ongoing series in which I introduce my yankee husband to my favorite things around town.

I lived out-of-state during last year's Wildwood Park for the Arts' annual lantern festival, so I was excited when my friend Whitney suggested a double date to this year's event. Tickets were purchased and a plan was made to attend on Saturday night.

The festival celebrates the first full moon of the lunar year and showcases several geographical locations around the planet with food, beverages and live entertainment.

The event started at 6 p.m. and we arrived about an hour later. Wildwood Park was packed full of couples and families, all strolling around the property which was decorated with thousands of luminaries and decor inspired by each of the represented countries. At check-in, we reviewed the menu of offerings from each station and each couple decided to purchase $30 in Wildbucks.

First stop: Asia. The menu looked tasty -- hot and sour soup, honey sesame chicken, vegetable fried rice, and red curry chicken. We waited in line for about 15 minutes and were surprised to find that the only food offered was sushi from Kroger (at $1/roll) and miso soup ($3). Hmmm. Well, it was the first station so we gave them the benefit of the doubt. We passed on the sushi, but enjoyed the warm goodness of the soup and watched a young guy do a cool taekwondo routine with nunchucks (nunchucks, y'all!).

Next up: New Orleans. We were pretty hungry by this point so we immediately got in line for red beans and rice ($4). The person right before us literally got the last bean in sight. The volunteer manning the station was unsure if there would be more beans coming, so we forewent the option of having our palms read and moved on.

Our spirits were lifted by the site of giant turkey legs. We located Shakespeare's England and got in line. A little worried we'd wait in another long line only to find out there was no food left, I snuck toward the servers just in time to hear that they had three turkey legs left. Since we were about 45 people back, we abandoned post.

Well, surely Mexico would not disappoint! We headed toward the lively sounds of Mariachi music and eagerly anticipated the chips, salsa, guacamole we were sure to enjoy shortly. We danced the cha-cha in line and looked forward to finally enjoying some food. Sadly, they were out of chips, so we drowned our sorrows in Dos Equis ($3) and tequila shots ($4). 

I'm not going to lie, at this point we were pretty disgruntled with the entire thing. We had pre-purchased tickets, so surely the event planners had a general idea of how many people would be in attendance. I worked in non-profit marketing/event planning for the first three years of my Big Girl Career (and know what a difficult and sometimes thankless job it can be), so I tried to be lenient. 

After a brief trip to the moon, we saw a few carnivores with turkey legs in hand. Maybe they had restocked?? We high-tailed it back to England and finally got our paws on a turkey leg ($8). We stuck around for a few minutes to watch some performers engage the crowd in a round of Shakespearean Mad Libs, and I grabbed the last bag of shortbread cookies ($2 for 3) in the building. 

At 8:45 p.m., we decided to skip Jamaica and Rome, handed our remaining $4 in Wildbucks to some kid, and made the decision to head to Local Lime for an actual dinner (which was fantastic). 

Let me just say that I love Wildwood Park and the wonderful programs and services it provides to our community. The grounds are beautiful and I would highly encourage you to tour them during the day. Admission is free during non-events and is open daily until 5 p.m. 

As for the LANTERNS! event, maybe we'll give it another shot next year, BUT! we'll be sure not to arrive hungry.

Regardless, it was a fun night out with good friends--and good friends can save almost any questionable situation.

LANTERNS! OUTDOOR WINTER FESTIVAL | WILDWOOD PARK FOR THE ARTS | 20919 DENNY ROAD, LITTLE ROCK, AR 72223 | WILDWOODPARK.ORG

10 Little Rock Things I Love

In honor of Valentine's Day, here are 10 things from Little Rock that make my heart beat aflutter. In no particular order:

1. The fries at Stickyz Rock 'n' Roll Chicken Shack. They are those really good shoestring kind and they sprinkle some sort of mixture of Old Bay and sunshine on top. A side of Creamy Dill dressing for dipping makes them even better.

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2. My gold hoops by Myrrh Handmade Jewelry. I refused to tell my sister-in-law any other gift idea for myself so she was forced to go to Ember to buy them for me. Hey, that's what you get for asking me the day before Christmas Eve, Cristy!

3. The Love Factory print from RollandTumblePress that I've had my eye one forever. My sneaky husband bought it for me during a "trip to the bathroom" at the Heart of the Bar event. It's an excellent addition to my growing R&T collection.

4. One (or three) of David Burnette's Dark and Stormy cocktails, served to me while sitting on a barstool at South on Main

5. Silver Bullet earrings -- a gift from my girl, Bang-Up Betty. They are perfect for letting people know I mean business...and for precautions against werwolves. 

6. While originally from Argentina, I wouldn't know about TILIA's Malbec-Syrah if it weren't for the experts at Springhill Wine & Spirits. I love red wine, but like many folks, most varieties give me a migraine. This sustainably farmed red blend not only leaves me headache-free, but Dr. Oz says that Syrah is the healthiest. Win/win!

7. John Willis' King of the Cocktail Party. John's smooth timbre and catchy tunes keep my toes tapping even during my most stressful work days. 

8. The roasted zucchini salsa from Local Lime. Y'all. It sounds kinda odd, but it is so stinkin' good. It's made with a blend of roasted zucchini, green chili, cilantro, Mexican crema and lime, and is topped with toasted pumpkin seeds. The hubs and I are meeting friends there tomorrow night and all I can think about is getting my hands (and face) on it.

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9. My striped Choose Love tank from Erin Lorenzen's line of clothing. I didn't see any for sale in her Etsy shop, but rumor has it you can still get them at The Green Corner Store.

10. Can I get sentimental for a second? I want to include all of the lovely people of Little Rock -- both strangers and friends -- who have been so complimentary and supportive of this website. It's only been six weeks and I already have more readers than I ever imagined (seriously, like 5,000 last month alone, y'all!).  Yeah, so shameless plug: if you haven't already, head over to Facebook and hit "like." I kinda like you, too.

Loving the Love

We've received tons of great shout-outs, but this one is like finally being recognized by your more important big brother. Thanks, Arkansas.gov!

Boogie to Mulehead

This blog post is part of an ongoing series in which I introduce my yankee husband to my favorite things around town.

Hubs had heard me preach about my love of the band Mulehead for quite a while before I moved him to Little Rock. What's not to love? Clever/catchy tunes, witty banter from frontman Kevin Kerby, top notch instrumentation from Brent LaBeau, Geoff Curran and David Raymond…and the dancing. I live a pretty sedentary life, but I can’t help but shake my booty when Mulehead is on stage.

So when I heard they were going to start playing together again, I was pumped. The first chance we got, we headed to the White Water Tavern to see them play. Curt was already a fan of Slobberbone, whose lead singer was opening that night, so it was a no-brainer.

In addition to my old faves (Punk Rock Party, Cheap Red Wine, Crooked Spine, yada yada.), they introduced some new songs that did not disappoint. 

The only downside of the night was some overly-enthusiastic fan who was grinding on the ladies and booty-smacking everyone standing near the stage. To that guy: thanks, dude. You made Curt grumpy so we left before they played Black and White TV.

Unforgivable. 

MULEHEAD | FACEBOOK | LISTEN HERE.

Valentine Gift Guide

Are you stumped over what to get your loved one (or really-like-a-lot one)? Head downtown to Paper Scissors Little Rock and peruse their assortment of locally made goods for guys and gals. Need help? Macy and Lulu will be on hand to assist you.

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Weekend Picks for February 1

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