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ENTERTAINMENT NOTES: Fort Smith to play out history with walking tour

by Eric E. Harrison | March 30, 2021 at 1:49 a.m.
The Render Sisters — Mary-Keaton (left) and Stella Render — have been nominated for two Arkansas Country Music Awards — Young Artist of The Year and Video of The Year. They'll perform at the June 7 awards show in Conway. (Special to the Democrat-Gazette/Chad Crawford)

Elsewhere in entertainment, events and the arts:

Fort Smith walks

Re-enactors will portray "the most famous, and infamous, people" who have traversed Fort Smith's Garrison Avenue as the Fort Smith Museum of History, 320 Rogers Ave., hosts "A Walk Through Time: A Guided Walking Tour" at 2 p.m. April 17. Admission is included in the price of museum admission: $7 for general admission, $2 for children 6-15, free for children under 6 and $5 for active or retired military. Call (479) 783-7841 or visit

Sister act

The Render Sisters — Mary-Keaton and Stella Render of Pine Bluff — have joined the list of performers for this year's Arkansas Country Music Awards June 7 at Reynolds Performance Hall at the University of Central Arkansas in Conway. The pop-country teenagers are nominees for Young Artist of the Year and for Video of the Year, for their song "Lost Boy," directed by country star Pam Tillis. They will join Billy Dean, Amy Helm, David Adam Byrnes and Maybe April, Grace Stormont, Mae Estes, Spillwater Drive and TRIPPP on the show. A limited number of tickets is available at

Cemetery talks

The Downtown Dames' Mount Holly Garden Series resumes in April, after the cancellation of the 2020 series because of covid-19; as the cemetery at 1200 Broadway remains closed to larger events, the April, May and June meetings will take place in the yard of member Margaret Wyatt's house, 1600 Louisiana St., Little Rock.

All lectures and programs are at 9 a.m.; everyone attending will need to take a lawn chair, socially distance and wear a mask. No public bathroom will be available and no refreshments will be served (so feel free to provide your own cup of coffee). The schedule:

  • ◼️ April 17: "Fascinating Facts for Successful Gardens and Lawns" by Andrew Kenley of Natural State Horticare
  • ◼️ May 15: "Monarch Flower Gardens" by Leslie Fowler
  • ◼️ June 19: "Container Water Gardens, So Great to Grow" by Mark Gibson of Green Thumb Water Gardens. (Gibson will also sell organic blackberries and blueberries.)

Starting in June, the group will re-evaluate the situation; once it is "safe," lectures and programs will resume at the cemetery's Bell House. The rest of the lineup (all lectures and programs at 9 a.m.):

  • ◼️ July 17: "Wildflowers on Arkansas Roadways" by Joe Ledvina, Arkansas Department of Transportation, Department of Natural Resources
  • ◼️ Aug. 21: "Easy, Carefree Ground Covers, for Sun and Shade" by Master Gardener Susan Rose
  • ◼️ Sept. 18: "African Violets 101" by Danny Tidwell, Arkansas African Violet Society.
  • ◼️ Oct. 16: "Fall Plantings, Taking You Through Winter Into Spring" by Ted Lewis of Floral Express.

Call (501) 372-3372 or email

High, low 'Notes'

Retired University of Arkansas at Little Rock faculty member Ray Moore has turned his “Notes on Music” for radio station KLRE-FM, 90.5, into a recently published book. (Arkansas Democrat-Gazette/Cary Jenkins)
Retired University of Arkansas at Little Rock faculty member Ray Moore has turned his “Notes on Music” for radio station KLRE-FM, 90.5, into a recently published book. (Arkansas Democrat-Gazette/Cary Jenkins)

Ray Moore, professor emeritus at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock and a former music director of the Arkansas Choral Society, has recast the "Notes on Music" squibs he delivered in nearly 20 years on Little Rock public classical music radio station KLRE-FM, 90.5, into a book, "High Notes and Low: 300 and a Few More Whimsical Anecdotes Concerning Music and Musicians" ($12.99, Amadeus Press, an imprint of Hal Leonard Publishing Co.). The 113-page book is divided into six chapters, dealing with composers, performers, conductors, "Critics, Soothsayers and Charlatans," as well as performances and pieces; a miscellaneous grouping titled "This, That and Some of the Other" is also listed. An uncredited cover cartoon depicts the "Egyptian" supernumerary cleaning up after a camel during a production of Giuseppe Verdi's opera "Aida." Visit

Historic quilt contest

The Rogers Historical Museum and Northwest Arkansas Modern Quilt Guild are seeking Northwest Arkansas' oldest quilts to honor the region's heritage of quilting and quilt makers for the "Quilt Quest Contest 2021," part of the Rogers 140th Anniversary Celebration.

Holders of 19th- and 20th-century heirloom quilts with original designs or traditional patterns can submit two color photographs of each quilt — one focused on overall design and one a close-up view of stitching, workmanship and fabric — April 12-May 10 along with entry forms (one per quilt) are available at You don't need complete historical and/or technical knowledge of the quilt or quilt maker, but the museum and guild will consider any information, particularly family stories, as important clues to the quilt's age. Submit mail entries to Quilt Quest Contest, Rogers Historical Museum, 322 S. Second St., Rogers, AR 72756. There is no fee to enter.

A panel of quilt experts and local historians will carefully examine quilts that make the finals; final judging takes place June 5. They will not make financial appraisals. The winning entry, announced via the museum's website — — and on its Facebook and Instagram pages, will receive an official authenticity certificate to help document the quilt's history that will add to its value and increase its preservation possibilities.

Call (479) 621-1154 or email

Staff writer Sean Clancy contributed to this report.


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