Natural State Chautauqua Brings History to Life in Smackover

Zoie Clift
For history buffs, the 10th annual Natural
State Chautauqua starts today through June 5 in Smackover. The theme of the
performances are What Made the 20s Roar? and will feature three interesting
characters from the era. Chautauquas are local assemblies that flourished
in the U.S. in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. They provided education
combined with entertainment in the form of lectures, concerts, and plays and
were modeled after activities at the Chautauqua Institution of western New

The event is a chance to  step back into the past with
performances by living history characters who bring history to life. Each night
a different character will portray an individual from the 1920s that was
significant in our country’s history. 
Today, listen to President Calvin Coolidge talk about this interesting
time after World War I and before the Great Depression. On June 4 ( tomorrow), visit with
Henry Ford as he describes his Model T and the impact it had on a decade and
the world. Zelda Fitzgerald, the
“Original Flapper,” will tell the story of her life and times during
the time known as the Jazz Age on June 5. Visitors are invited to bring their
lawn chairs and sit back and relax as they enjoy the stories of a simpler era.  

All the performances, which
are free, take place from 7-8:15 p.m. at the Oil Field Park at the Arkansas
Museum of Natural Resources. While the Arkansas Museum of Natural Resources

the 46th park acquired by the state parks system

interprets all of Arkansas’s natural resources it
primarily focuses on oil and brine. The center
interprets the history of the resources, from the beginning of their creation
in the Jurassic Period. The museum, which has won numerous awards for its
exhibits and interpretive programs, is located on Ark. 7 two miles south of
Smackover and about 10 miles north of El Dorado. For more information, call 870- 725-2877 or visit Enjoy the show! 


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