OCT. 1, 2019: Taking a toddler to Northwest Arkansas

It's been a little over two years since we last visited Northwest Arkansas, and a lot has changed. Bentonville has grown and so too has Griffin, as you can see in the photo sliders above comparing May 2017 and September 2019.

Here's ten takeaways from a quick visit that had a lot of highlights.

MARCH 24, 2018: 20 years since school shooting

Today marks 20 years since two middle school students in northeast Arkansas opened fire outside their school, killing four classmates and a teacher and wounding 10 others. Arkansas Democrat-Gazette reporter Jeannie Roberts visited with some of the survivors for an in-depth story, and I built the online package to showcase it. Included are never-before-published photos, full transcripts and video from depositions where the two killers were questioned, a video by photojournalist Mitchell Pe Masilun and much more. See it all here.

MARCH 9, 2018: Potholes in Little Rock

After a month of record rainfall, it seems like potholes are everywhere in Little Rock. I used data from the city's citizen complaint website to map all the locations of pothole complaints so far this year. Each one lists the time the complaint was received and the time it was cleared, which also allowed a fairly simple calculation of the average time it takes to repair a pothole in different wards of the city. Here's what I found.

MARCH 5, 2018: More marathon coverage

I have started using a new layering tool to add interactive elements to our e-Edition online replica of the print newspaper. This Little Rock Marathon page was the first opportunity to plan a sequence, create an animated gif and then place that over the static image that appeared in print. (We're not quite there, but it's a step in the right direction toward the magical newspaper in Harry Potter.)

See the marathon animation in action in the replica edition here, where you can click on it to get a photo gallery of some of the staff's best race-day photos.

MARCH 4, 2018: Little Rock Marathon

Thousands of racers descend on Arkansas' capital city each March for the annual Little Rock Marathon, and Arkansas Online always has strong coverage. We start planning months in advance knowing there will be a surge of interest from participants as well as their friends and family. Here's this year's special online section, which features hundreds of photos from all parts of the 26.2-mile course plus video of the winners and a surprise finish-line proposal.

FEB. 26, 2018: Johnny Cash in Arkansas

Johnny Cash is one of Arkansas' most iconic and beloved native sons, so I put together this special page in honor of what would have been the singer's 86th birthday.

Featured in the mix are: an interactive 360-degree tour of Cash' boyhood home in northeast Arkansas that I shot while on vacation a few months back; the sign and monument on display at his birthplace in south Arkansas; a video of a somewhat bizarre but nevertheless cool animatronic Johnny Cash at the Arkansas Entertainers Hall of Fame; and one of the first references to Cash I could find in the newspaper archives.

FEB. 15, 2018: Talking about social media

I had the pleasure of co-leading a presentation about social media for the Arkansas chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists. We touched on a variety of topics with a strong emphasis on Twitter. My biggest takeaways are to embrace your own personality -- without veering into opinion -- and to take full advantage of the suite of analytics Twitter offers to maximize your impact. If you missed it, the whole talk is online at the SPJ Facebook page.

FEB. 13, 2018: New emails

We are greatly expanding our number of email newsletters at Arkansas Online, and subscribing is completely free. You can click here to sign up for all of them, which I recommend, or we've got individual signup pages for each of them below.

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