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story.lead_photo.caption FILE PHOTO: Tia Booth talks with Arie Luyendyk in this photo from the premiere of last season's "The Bachelor."

The journey of an Arkansan looking for love on ABC's The Bachelor came to an end Monday night — but not before a visit to the Natural State.

Tia Booth, a 26-year-old physical therapist and one of the show's final four contestants, took this season's serial dater, Arie Luyendyk Jr., to her hometown of Weiner, a city of fewer than 800 people about 25 miles southwest of Jonesboro.

"It's kind of like a big family," Booth said.

Some Arkansans took to Twitter to point out the show's mistake in abbreviating Arkansas as "AK," the abbreviation for Alaska, in a caption introducing the location.

The pair raced cars at Crowley's Ridge Raceway in Paragould and drank beers in the bed of a pickup before meeting Booth's family members at their home.

After toasting pigs in a blanket, the pair spoke separately with Booth's parents about their relationship.


"If you hurt her, I can find you on Google," Booth's father told Luyendyk.

Luyendyk explained his feelings for Tia to her father and older brother.

"She's such a strong, cool and very honest person," Luyendyk said. "A strong Southern girl who puts me in my place."

But when the final rose ceremony came around and the 36-year-old former racing driver had to decide which of the four contestants would advance to the final three, Booth was not awarded a rose.

"This is the hardest decision I've ever had to make in my life. It really is," Luyendyk said.

Booth said goodbye with tears streaming down her face but Monday night took to social media to express appreciation for the experience.

"I'm forever grateful for #TheBachelor for this opportunity to learn so much about myself and grow as a person," she wrote on Instagram. "It is ok to step out of my comfort zone and truly feel...actually it's encouraged. What a beautiful chapter of life."

But Booth may have more to say when she appears on the show's "The Women Tell All," a segment that airs Sunday in which the contestants talk about the season and the lead of The Bachelorette, a spinoff that airs in the spring, is revealed.

The Bachelor airs at 7 p.m. Mondays on ABC.

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  • hogfan2012
    February 20, 2018 at 2:49 p.m.

    She was so devastated - Broke my heart for her, but I eel that she deserves better. She is beautiful, smart and candid and I know there a lot of good men out there who would love to know her. I am so thankful that he let her go this week instead of next week after the fantasy suite dates. I have always thought that weeks' elimination is the most personal attack there is.

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