(State of Arkansas)
- Location: Southern United States
- Capital: Little Rock
- Language(s): English
- Population: 3,012,574
- Total Area: 137,733 sq km
- Curious Alcohol Fact: Religion is strong in Arkansas and there are cities in the state where the sale of alcohol is prohibited.
- Most Popular Drink(s): Wine, beer, soft drinks, fruit juices
- Interesting Fact: The state is part of what is known as the ‘Bible Belt’
- Nickname: The Natural State
- What You Must Do in Arkansas: Visit the President William Jefferson Clinton Birthplace Home National Historic Site
The name of the state originated from the appellation given to the Quapaw Indians by the early French explorers. Arkansas shares borders with the following states: Mississippi and Tennessee to the east, Oklahoma to the west, Louisiana to the south, Missouri to the north and Texas to the southwest. Arkansas was admitted into the Union as a constituent state in 1836 as the 25th state. One of the most prominent physical features of the state is the Ozark Plateau and is located in the northern part of the country. It is important to stretch that the Ozark Plateau is also called the Ozark Mountain. The Arkansas River is also a major geographical feature in the area and in its valley; you will find Mount Magazine, which is the tallest in the state. You will also see the often-visited Hot Springs National Park in the area. The capital city is Little Rock and you will enjoy the climate in the state. Winters are mild even though summers can be hot.
More than four-fifths of the people in the state are Whites and a little over 10% of the residents are African Americans. Most of the Whites have either a Scottish or English ancestry and many of the early settlers migrated from Virginia. I learned that in some other parts of the state, African Americans can make up more than half of the population. Other people include Asians, Native Indians and Pacific Islanders. Christianity is the major religion in the state and many of the people follow the Roman Catholic Church, the Baptist Church and the Methodist Church. Unlike some of the other states in the country, Arkansas carries a strong religious fervor and you will not fail to notice the conservative and strongly-religious nature of the state.
Apart from visiting many of the historic sites, one other activity that I enjoyed very much in Arkansas was eating. The people of the state are excellent hosts and you will surely enjoy their superb outdoor dining. Although there are various dishes in the state, one that I will always remember and cherish is the barbeque and there are many BBQ centers all over the state.
For a state that is part of the ‘Bible Belt’, alcohol is a very sensitive issue. That implies that there are stringent laws on alcohol sale and consumption. Before you can consume liquor, you must be at least 21 years (as against 19 in Canada) and before you can even work in a bar selling alcohol, you must be at least 21! If you are thinking of working as a bartender in the Natural State, you need to take a good look at your birth certificate. For those on the right side of the law, there are fines wines and beers to be enjoyed.
- A resident of the state are also called Arkansawyer.
- There are countless caves all over Arkansas making it a favorite destination of speleologists.
- Arkansas is the birthplace of former US president, Bill Clinton.
- A nickname for the state in the past was the Land of Opportunity. Today it is also called the Natural State.
- Sam Walton is another prominent person from the state.
- The capital city of Little Rock is located in the center of the state.
- Like many of the other states in the country, the name of the state was derived from one of the indigenous Indian languages.
- Arkansas is one of the country’s largest producers of catfish.
Story By World By Shotglass
©2013 World By Shotglass. All Rights Reserved
Special thanks to our contributors:
Adebayo Ahmed Adebola (Ilorin, Nigeria).