ENTERTAINMENT: North Little Rock hosts World Cheese Dip Championship, Foam Fest and lights festival for weekend fun

The Northern Lights Holiday Festival EH illuminates North Little Rock's Argenta Plaza Saturday. (North Little Rock Convention & Visitors Bureau)


The World Cheese Dip Championship, now a joint event with the Foam Fest Craft Beer Festival, takes place 6 p.m. Friday at Dickey-Stephens Park, at the North Little Rock end of the Broadway Bridge. The championship is consistent with the brag that Little Rock is the place where cheese dip was invented in 1935. Cheese dip creators will be vying for awards for judges' and attendees' favorite. Foam Fest offers samples of hundreds of varieties of craft beer, cider and libations from around the world. An All-Access Pass (Cheese Dip Championship and Beer Festival) is $40 (and you must be 21); cheese dip-only tickets are $15, $10 for children 15 and younger. Part of the proceeds fund Harmony Health Clinic. Visit tinyurl.com/mrfebxe7.

  photo  Rhys McGill (left), 3, and his brother, Milo, 7, chow down on samples of cheese dip during the 10th annual World Cheese Dip Championship on Sunday at the Little Rock River Market. See more photos at arkansasonline.com/1011cheese/. (Arkansas Democrat-Gazette/Staci Vandagriff)

Northern Lights Festival

North Little Rock Tourism, the city of North Little Rock and the Argenta Downtown Council host the sixth Northern Lights Holiday Festival, 3-7 p.m. Saturday at Argenta Plaza, 510 Main St., North Little Rock. The event includes a holiday market, "Santa's Workshop" with kids' holiday activities, photos with Santa, music by the Big Dam Horns and North Little Rock's 38-foot Christmas tree. Food and drinks from food trucks and North Little Rock's Flyway Brewing and Diamond Bear Brewing Co. will be sold. (Restaurants and bars within the Argenta Outdoor Dining District will allow patrons to carry to-go beverages within dining district boundaries, which includes the plaza.) No concluding fireworks -- officials don't want to scare the horses at nearby Piccolo Zoppé's Winter Circus. Main Street will remain open; the contingent holiday market will move to the parking lot at the 600 Main building. Admission is free. Visit tinyurl.com/vptb4r7w or facebook.com/events/1449277769233368.


Architectural art

"Witnessing Space and Time," black-and-white documentary photographs and abstract studies of historic architecture by Y. Hope Osborn, opens Friday with a 6-8 p.m. Third Friday Art Walk reception at the Argenta Library, 420 Main St., North Little Rock. The exhibit will remain on display through Dec. 8. Library hours are 9 a.m.-6 p.m. Monday-Friday. Admission is free. Call (501) 687-1061 or visit NLRlibrary.org.

  photo  "Crossways" is part of "Witnessing Space and Time," an exhibition of documentary photographs and abstract studies of historic architecture by Y. Hope Osborn, going on display Friday at the Argenta Library in North Little Rock. (Special to the Democrat-Gazette)

Pastels exhibition

"Reflections in Pastel," the Arkansas Pastel Society's 10th National Exhibition, opens with a 5:30-7:30 p.m. reception and award ceremony Friday at the William F. Laman Public Library, 2801 Orange St., North Little Rock. Juror Tom Christopher chose 38 pieces by artists from across the nation for the biennial exhibition. It's on display until Jan. 12. Library hours are 9 a.m.-7 p.m. Monday-Thursday, 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Friday-Saturday. Call (501) 758-1720 or visit NLRlibrary.org.


'Bodyguard: The Musical'

KTM Productions stages "The Bodyguard: The Musical" (book by Alexander Dinelaris, based on the 1992 film, featuring songs recorded by Whitney Houston), 7 p.m. Friday-Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday in the auditorium at Hall High School, 6700 H St., Little Rock. The cast includes Chicago-based actor Simeon Henderson (TV's "Chicago Fire," "Chicago PD" and "Empire"). Tickets are $35. Call (501) 420-3704 or visit pic.ticketspice.com/thebodyguardlittlerock.


Rackensack circle

The Rackensack Folklore Society's Pulaski County Chapter hosts a "Folk Circle," sharing music, hot cider, hot chocolate and "tempting goodies" at 6:30 p.m. today at the Cox Building, on the Central Arkansas Library System Main Library campus, 120 River Market Ave., Little Rock. You can participate (take your tunes and/or instruments) or "just come and enjoy the music." Park in the Main Library lot; the society will validate parking stubs so patrons can exit the gate at no charge. Admission is free. Visit rackensack.wixsite.com/rackensack. The society moves its monthly meetings to the Cox Building starting Jan. 1.


Pine Bluff poetry slam

Tru Poet hosts "ART WORKS Presents: Slam Poetry," 6-8 p.m. Friday in the Adam B. Robinson Jr. Black Box Theater at ART WORKS on Main, 627 S. Main St., Pine Bluff. Poets 16 and older can share spoken-word selections and original creations. Entry is $10, $15 for members of the Arts & Science Center for Southeast Arkansas; no advance registration is required. Participants can enter for a chance to win door prizes. Drinks and snacks will be sold. Call (870) 536-3375 or email srahmaan@asc701.org.

'Living Treasure' nominations

Nominations are open through Jan. 26 for Arkansas Living Treasure, recognizing the lifetime achievements and contributions by masters of traditional crafts and/or folk arts to heritage arts and crafts of Arkansas. Visit tinyurl.com/5n7373kj.


'Dark Matter' tour

Comedian and actor Katt Williams brings his "Dark Matter" tour to North Little Rock with an 8 p.m. March 23 show at Simmons Bank Arena. Tickets, $63-$254 (plus service charges, with a limit of eight tickets per household), go on sale at 10 a.m. Friday via Ticketmaster.com.

  photo  Comedian and actor Katt Williams brings his "Dark Matter" tour to North Little Rock's Simmons Bank Arena March 23. Tickets go on sale Friday. (Special to the Democrat-Gazette)

'Potter in Concert'

The Arkansas Symphony Orchestra will perform John Williams' score as the film appears on a 40-foot screen behind it for "Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone in Concert," 7:30 p.m. April 20 at Little Rock's Robinson Center Performance Hall, 426 W. Markham St. at Broadway. Tickets, $56-$126, go on sale Friday via littlerock.com/robinson-center. The show is part of the "Harry Potter Film Concert Series" from Warner Bros., Discovery Global Themed Entertainment and CineConcerts. No other films-in-concert have yet been booked for Little Rock. Visit harrypotterinconcert.com.