Arkansas Heritage Month

Arkansas Heritage Month is a program of the Division of Arkansas Heritage (a division of the Arkansas Department of Parks, Heritage, and Tourism) with a mission “to encourage communities and organizations to celebrate their history and heritage.” It began as Heritage Week in 1982 and expanded into a month-long program in 1998.

Each year, the Division of Arkansas Heritage selected one of its various agencies to highlight during the month of May. In 2018, for example, Arkansas Heritage Month’s theme was “Off the Beaten Path: Explore and Enjoy Arkansas’s Natural Heritage.” This theme highlighted the work of the Arkansas Natural Heritage Commission (ANHC).

Various events are held throughout the state as part of Arkansas Heritage Month, including festivals, space studies, concerts, nature walks, and tours. Every year, the Division of Arkansas Heritage releases an exclusive poster for that Arkansas Heritage Month.

The Division of Arkansas Heritage instituted an annual Arkansas Heritage Month Grant Program to assist nonprofit organizations in projects that further the highlighted agency’s mission. Recipients of these grants (which have been worth up to $5,000) vary in organization type (arts centers, preservation societies, museums, schools, nonprofits, etc.). Preserve Arkansas’s Most Endangered Places list has been a regular recipient of the grant.

For additional information:
Division of Arkansas Heritage. (accessed March 31, 2020).

Wassell, Irene “Events Co-ordinated for Heritage Week: Crafts, Antiques, Country Music, Dance…” Arkansas Gazette, May 5, 1983, p. 1C.

Katelynn Caple
Henderson State University


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