Rex Nelson

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REX NELSON: Walking in Des Arc

Subscriber onlyIt's a summer afternoon in east Arkansas, and it's as if I've stepped back in time. Continue reading...

REX NELSON: Death of a mentor

Subscriber onlyIan Cosh, the Northern Ireland native who heads the Ben Elrod Center for Family and Community at Ouachita Baptist University in Arkadelphia, called me several years ago when I had no time for taking on extra projects. But when Cosh explained what he wanted--my assistance in writing a book on the life of Arkansas educator Ben Elrod--I couldn't say no. At night and on weekends, I worked to co-author with Cosh a book titled Giving Until It Feels Good. Continue reading...

REX NELSON: Promise at Palestine

Subscriber onlyIt's my March tradition. I go to Hot Springs to watch state high school basketball championship games for two days. I attend the Friday games, spend the night at the Arlington Hotel, have a big breakfast at the Pancake Shop on Saturday morning and then watch the Saturday games before heading home. Continue reading...

REX NELSON: Hail to the chef

Subscriber onlyWhen I see Lt. Gov. Tim Griffin, our conversations are rarely about politics. Griffin served in the U.S. House of Representatives, worked in the West Wing of the White House during the George W. Bush administration, and worked for the Republican National Committee. I was the political editor of this newspaper, spent almost a decade working for Gov. Mike Huckabee, and also served in the Bush administration. Continue reading...

REX NELSON: Benton: boomtown

Schools, job training, growing businesses and attractive amenities expand opportunities in this Saline County community.

Subscriber onlyI'm sitting in the offices of the Benton Area Chamber of Commerce and looking across Market Street at a sign that says United Steelworkers. Headquartered in Pittsburgh, the USW is the largest industrial labor union in the country. It once had a major influence on politics in Saline County. Those were the days when Reynolds Metals Co. and Alcoa dominated the county's economy. Continue reading...

REX NELSON: The people's game

Subscriber onlyOn Aug. 10, 1971, L. Robert Davis met 15 other baseball researchers at the National Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, N.Y., to discuss their mutual interests. That meeting marked the beginning of the Society for American Baseball Research, commonly known as SABR. A decade after its founding, there were almost 1,500 members. There are now more than 6,000. Continue reading...

REX NELSON: Celebrating Central High

Subscriber onlyI spent almost a decade working in the governor's office. There were many eventful days during that period, perhaps none more newsworthy than the first one--the tumultuous afternoon of July 15, 1996, when Gov. Mike Huckabee took office after his predecessor, Gov. Jim Guy Tucker, waffled on whether or not he should resign. Continue reading...

Well done, Mississippi

Subscriber onlyGreenwood, Miss., has long been one of my favorite places to visit. A stay at the Alluvian Hotel and meals at the Crystal Grill, Lusco's and Giardina's (order the flounder at Crystal Grill and go for the pompano at Lusco's and Giardina's) can cure whatever ails me. Continue reading...

REX NELSON: Lunch at Rabbit Ridge

Subscriber onlyDrilling activity has slowed considerably in the Fayetteville Shale Play due to the decline in natural gas prices in recent years. In February, Southwestern Energy announced that it had put its assets in this gas-producing area of Arkansas on the auction block. There's still enough action in the Damascus area, though, that I was told to look for white Southwestern Energy pickups in the parking lot. That's how I would know that I had reached Rabbit Ridge Farms in time for Wednesday lunch. Continue reading...

REX NELSON: The fintech hub

Subscriber onlyLee Watson and I were finishing our catfish at one of the businesses located in what has become restaurant row along Main Street in downtown Little Rock. Watson, with whom I've worked on projects in the past, is the founding CEO of the Venture Center, which is located just down the street in the Little Rock Technology Park. His title is now chief innovator. Continue reading...

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