Downtown Little Rock Partnership Announces New Ambassadors Program

In a press conference on February 15, 2017, on the corner of Sixth Street and Main Street, Downtown Little Rock Partnership Executive Director Gabe Holmstrom announced the start of an Ambassadors Program, a new resource for Downtown and its residents and visitors.downtown-little-rock-partnership-press-conference-new-ambassadors-pr

The program employs two ambassadors – Aaron Clark and Donovan James – to provide an additional, helpful presence in the area.  The two will be equipped with smart phones and a dedicated app which will allow them to report maintenance issues and any interactions with the public.

Joined by Clark and James as well as Little Rock Mayor Mark Stodola and Downtown Little Rock Partnership Board President Scott Schallhorn, Holmstrom said of the ambassadors, “Their focus is two-fold.  As they patrol the area, our ambassadors will take note of maintenance needs:  burned-out street lights, graffiti, trash, and the like. We will either report it to the city or, in some cases, fix the problems ourselves.  Their other focus is to be where people are, provide a welcoming presence.  This will involve walking people to cars, hotels and restaurants or even just giving directions.  Their job is to help those downtown in any way they can.”

The ambassadors will be wearing red, branded uniforms and cover a 45-block area Downtown.

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About Downtown Little Rock Partnership

We are a 501(c)3 non-profit whose mission is to accelerate the success of Downtown Little Rock, through leadership, partnership and initiative, sustaining and growing our vibrant urban core.

Three Fold headed to Main Street

threefoldThree Fold Noodles and Dumpling Co. plans to move from 215 Center St. to 613 Main St. by August, owner Lisa Zhang says. The new location, in the ground floor of the Arkansas Democrat Lofts building, is larger by more than 500 square feet, which will allow Three Fold to seat about 120 customers, up from 80 now. Another new addition: Baozi, a Chinese pastry with sweet and savory filling, will be offered for breakfast. Otherwise, Three Fold’s small menu of authentic Chinese noodles, dumplings and steamed buns served with an option of chicken, pork or tofu will remain the same.

Zhang said she was motivated to move by her desire to match her authentic Chinese cuisine with a more authentic Chinese serving style.

“When Chinese people eat a dumpling, they eat it very hot. Same thing with noodles,” she said. Her current location only allows for cafeteria-style serving.

“Aside from our food, I realize customers like us because we’re very efficient,” Zhang said. “The business lunch crowd, people going to the theater, coming home during rush hour, family travelers — they enjoy our fast but friendly service.” The new setup “won’t jeopardize speed, but it will have better service,” she said.

In the new space Three Fold will have an open kitchen where patrons can watch much of the preparation. Much like Pei Wei, customers will order from the counter and their food will be delivered to their table freshly prepared.

Zhang jokes that she’s been likened to the Soup Nazi of TV’s “Seinfeld” fame for her desire that customers eat the most authentic versions of her food. She hopes the open kitchen will help introduce diners to menu items they haven’t tried before. The new layout will allow Three Fold to push an option that’s available but not publicized by the restaurant: adding broth to noodle bowls. When Chinese people eat noodles, 80 percent of the time it’s as noodle soup, Zhang said. But “perfect noodle soup” can’t be done in the current service-line setup, she said. Noodles expand and lose their texture unless they’re served immediately after broth is poured over them. That will happen in the new location.

Barkus on Main: A Parade of Pet Proportions

Main Street in Downtown Little Rock will be the place to be for Mardi Gras fun this year!

Hounds Lounge Pet Resort & Spa will present Barkus on Main: A Parade of Pet Proportions in the Main Street Creative Corridor on Sunday, February 26… this parade is for the dogs!barkus-on-main-logoBarkus on Main will take place 1 p.m.-5 p.m. with a Barkus Pet Parade kicking off the fun at 2 p.m. from 6th and Main. After the parade, a Mardi Gras Block Party will be in progress in the 300 block hosted by the Downtown Little Rock Partnership, Soul Fish Café, Club Level, CJRW and Samantha’s Tap Room and Grill. Live music will be provided by the Big John Miller Band. Also available to attendees will be a Hurricane Station and Beer Garden, fresh Gumbo from Soul Fish Café and a Crawfish Boil from Club Level.

Registration for dogs is $25 before February 22, $40 after and day of the event. The first 100 dogs to register will receive Wag Bags; all dogs will be eligible for prizes. Prizes will be awarded for Best Pet/Owner Look Alike Costumes, Best Dressed Pet, Best Small Dog Costume, Best Large Dog Costume, Most Original Costume, Best Float and Judge’s Choice. Judges include Winnie Wright, THV11 Reporter, and Marine Glisovic, KATV Channel 7 Reporter and Victoria Price, Reporter/Anchor for KARK/Fox16 News. To register and for more details, go to barkusonmain.com.

Those pet owners who want his or her dog to lead the parade as the 2017 KING or QUEEN of Barkus on Main will be able to bid for the honor.  The auction will open Wednesday, February 1 and end Wednesday, February 22.  Bidding starts at $100.  Bids will increase at 5% increments. Go to barkusonmain.com for link to bidding.

The winning King and Queen will receive star treatment for the day including a Wag Bag, bragging rights and a trophy; the highest bidder will also receive $50 gift cards from Soul Fish Café, Rebel Kettle Brewery and Samantha’s Tap Room and Wood Grill.  In addition, the King and Queen will each receive a commemorative photo plaque of themselves to celebrate this honor.

Barkus on Main is going to be a howl of a good time!” said Gabe Holmstrom, Executive Director for the Downtown Little Rock Partnership. “Grandparents, kids and, of course, the family dogs are all welcome. Come on downtown and see what happens when we turn the Main Street Creative Corridor over to the dogs!”

The event will cap off a weekend of Mardi Gras events in Downtown Little Rock including the annual Mardi Gras  in SoMa (South Main) Parade on Saturday, February 25, noon to 3 p.m.

For more information about Barkus on Main, sponsorship, volunteering or bidding, check barkusonmain.com or call the Downtown Little Rock Partnership, 501-375-0121

New tenant at Tech Park: Ritter Communications

LR Tech Park, to open in March.

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Ritter Communications, a technology company based in Jonesboro, has signed a five-year lease for 1,328 square feet on the fifth floor of the Little Rock Technology Park, becoming the largest tenant to date in the Tech Park’s first building at 417 Main St.

The Tech Park is scheduled to open in March. Ritter, which offers advanced internet, phone and television services, was founded in 1906 in Marked Tree as E. Ritter Telephone Co. It remains a family business.

The park previously announced its first tenants, seven small startups and two individuals. The startups are leasing month-to-month, so the Ritter deal is significant to the park’s revenue flow. The park also announced that Blue Sail Coffee will open on the first floor.

MLK Day Camp at The Rep

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Celebrate the Martin Luther King holiday on Monday, January 16th, with a day of theatre activities hosted by Education at The Rep! Register your K-8th grade student for a day of creative and collaborative games, all centered around the theme of “dreams.” For more information, visit http://www.therep.org/learn/classes/camps.aspx.

Date: Monday, January 16
Time: 9:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
Grades: K – 8th
Tuition: $60 *

* Need-based scholarships are available upon application.

2nd LED Sign Being Installed on Main Street

The second of two LED signs will be installed this week on the northwest corner of the Main Street Mall building in the Little Rock Creative Corridor.

The curved monitor, like the “tickertape” monitor previously installed on the southwest corner of the building, will display digital posters and other images of events going on in Downtown Little Rock and provide additional visual interest in the 500 block of Main Street.

“It is exciting to see the transformation of this grand American street continue,” said Mayor Mark Stodola, one of the driving forces behind the Creative Corridor. “This new feature, in addition to being a helpful tool for sharing information, enhances the vibrant space and economic engine being created in the heart of downtown.”

Funding for both signs comes from the private foundation Educational Foundation of America.