Wednesday, March 28, 2012

North Little Rock, Arkansas

We are now parked in North Little Rock, by the Arkansas River. Looking across the river we can see downtown Little Rock. We took the above picture at sunset from a bridge which is near our recreational vehicle park. That old railroad bridge was built in 1899 for the now-defunct Choctow, Oklahoma, and Gulf Railroad. In 2011 it was dedicated in 2011 as part of the Clinton Presidential Park and changed into a pedestrian/bike pathway. The old Choctow Route railway station has been renovated into the University of Arkansas Clinton School of Public Service.
 At the end of the bridge is a walkway to the William J. Clinton Presidential Library. Surrounding the building is a wetlands area as well as a beautifully landscaped park which has trees and plants from Arkansas. The building has met the highest standards for energy efficiency. Floors of the library are made of bamboo, walls and ceilings have been constructed from recycled aluminum cans. Some of the carpeting has been made from the rubber of used tires. Another interesting feature of the building, which certainly make it most different from other presidential libraries, is that there is a penthouse on it where Clinton has living quarters, complete with a 4 hole putting green. It is where he stays when he visits Little Rock. This library is the largest of all the presidential libraries previously constructed. There is also space to showcase exhibits that are changed on a regular basis. We are fortunate that currently on display is a Cardinal baseball exhibit, complete with items from the Cardinal Baseball Hall of Fame in St. Louis. Our tour guide for the library told us that one of his fondest memories growing up was that of listening to Cardinal baseball on the radio.  Because of the current exhibit in the library, a large St.Louis Cardinal banner is draped above the entrance to the building.

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