Carin Schoppmeyer: Momentary marks a milestone

In short

Mo celebrates his 2nd birthday!

Who: The Momentary

What: The arts center celebrated its second anniversary with a members reception.

When: February 22

Where: The Momentary Tower Bar in Bentonville

Information: (479) 367-7500 or

Arkansas Tourism Hall of Fame Luncheon

Who: Arkansas Department of Parks, Heritage and Tourism

What: The group inducted Louis Cella and Bill Ott into the Arkansas Tourism Hall of Fame luncheon during the 48th Annual Governor’s Tourism Conference.

When: February 28

Where: Downtown Fayetteville

Information: (501) 682-7606 or

Members of The Momentary learned what’s on the horizon for the Bentonville contemporary art space as they helped the group celebrate its second anniversary on February 22, 2022 with a reception at the Tower Bar.

Organizers say the celebration was an opportunity for members to “first hear what’s happening at Momentary”, with programming and curatorial executives sharing what’s happening in the third year of the institution.

Guests heard from Cynthia Post Hunt, Dance/Theater Programmer; Argeo Ascani, music and festival programmer; Katie Robertson, Engagement Manager; and Kaitlin Garcia-Maestas, Associate Curator of Visual Arts.

This year’s schedule includes:

• April 2 — Rock Out with Anna Meredith, “This Scottish composer writes genre-defying music with a minimalist penchant for repeating patterns and a rocker’s willingness to kick things up a notch.”

• May 20-22 – Fresh grass | Bentonville’s Progressive Roots and Bluegrass Festival will feature headliners such as Emmylou Harris & The Red Dirt Boys, Margo Price, Sam Bush, The Jerry Douglas Band and Amythyst Kiah.

• June 1-12 — Live in America Festival, “a free two-week festival of live performances and cultural practices featuring more than 300 artists from a wide range of communities across the United States, its territories and Mexico”.

For a complete list, see April Wallace’s article in What’s Up! at]

Those who gathered for the birthday party included Zeek Taylor and Dick Titus, Marcela and Daniel Cruz, Dina and Tim Koch, Laura and Steve Johnson, Amanda Hawn, Kris Mullican; Laura Walker and Terry Cawood, Kristi Snyder and Erni Olsen, Anela Malik and Ahmed Zuhairy, Lynne and John Hehr, Silvia and Ted Robbins, Orson Weems, Jaclyn House, Jasmine Hudson and J’Aaron Merchant.

Leaders of the Arkansas Tourism Hall of Fame welcomed Louis Cella, president of Oaklawn Racing Casino Resort, and Bill Ott, veteran of Arkansas tourism communications, marketing and hospitality, as their two new members at a luncheon February 28 in downtown Fayetteville during the 48th annual Arkansas Governor’s Conference on Tourism.

Organizers say, “The Hall of Fame Award is presented annually to one or more individuals who have been actively involved in the Arkansas tourism industry for many years and who have made a substantial contribution to the improvement of the industry as a whole.

“Cella’s contributions to Arkansas Tourism can be seen in his stewardship of Oaklawn, one of the state’s top tourist attractions with more than 3 million visitors each year.”

Ott’s career has included leadership positions with a number of hospitality and tourism organizations, including the Hot Springs Advertising and Promotion Commission, Magic Springs Family Fun Park, Hot Springs Mountain Tower, and Mid-America Museum, the Hot Springs Chamber of Commerce, the Oaklawn Jockey Club and the 1886 Crescent Hotel and Spa and the 1905 Basin Park Hotel in Eureka Springs.

For more event photos —

Columnist Carin Schoppmeyer can be reached by email at [email protected]

Daniel and Marcela Cruz (left to right) and Gina and Tim Koch reunite at Momentary on February 22. (NWA Democrat-Gazette/Carin Schoppmeyer)
Photo Arkansas Tourism Hall of Fame inductee Bill Ott and Rebecca Lawson (seated, left to right); Allison McMillan; James and Elizabeth Wicker (standing, left to right); Jeremy Bragg and Regi Ott; and Clark Hopper attend the celebratory luncheon. (NWA Democrat-Gazette/Carin Schoppmeyer)
Photo Mark Foust, Superintendent, Buffalo National River, and Stacy Hurst, Secretary, Department of Parks, Heritage and Tourism, stand for a photo during the Hall of Fame luncheon. (NWA Democrat-Gazette/Carin Schoppmeyer)
Photo Emily Ironside and Orson Weems visit the Momentary Anniversary Celebration. (NWA Democrat-Gazette/Carin Schoppmeyer)
Photo Jaclyn House (left to right), Jasmine Hudson and J’Aaron Merchant attend Momentary’s second anniversary celebration on February 22. (NWA Democrat-Gazette/Carin Schoppmeyer)
Photo Todd Gadberry (from left), Ashley Dees, Pati Brown, Chris Barnes, Merle Buxton, Bill Barnes, Kellie Mishler and Cliff Mills represent Tri-Pennant Family of Resorts at the Arkansas Tourism Hall of Fame luncheon on February 28 . Bill is a Hall of Fame Honoree alumnus. (NWA Democrat-Gazette/Carin Schoppmeyer)
Photo Zeek Taylor (left) and Dick Titus attend the Momentary celebration at the museum’s Tower Bar. (NWA Democrat-Gazette/Carin Schoppmeyer)
Photo Ahmed Zuhairy and Anela Malik take a photo during the rally to celebrate Momentary’s second anniversary. (NWA Democrat-Gazette/Carin Schoppmeyer)
Photo Ahmed Zuhairy and Anela Malik take a photo during the rally to celebrate Momentary’s second anniversary. (NWA Democrat-Gazette/Carin Schoppmeyer)

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