NPC Student Government Association (SGA) Visits State Capitol

Hot Springs, Arkansas – The National Park College (NPC) Student Government Association (SGA) visited the state capitol this week. Students toured the capitol complex, observed legislative committee meetings and House and Senate sessions.
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The day included a visit with Governor Asa Hutchinson. SGA President, Roger Powell presented the Governor with a resolution on behalf of the student body thanking him for his support of higher education. The resolution was also presented to Senator Bill Sample, Senator Alan Clark, Representative John Vines, Representative Bruce Cozart, and Dr. Brett Powell, Director of the Arkansas Department of Higher Education.
Students were introduced as special guests at the afternoon sessions for both the House and the Senate. They observed as the House voted to approve House Bill 1065, the state appropriation for National Park College.
Other parts of the tour included visits to the State Treasurer’s office, and a private tour of State Auditor, Andrea Lea’s office. Senator Alan Clark invited the group to the Senate floor for photos and also provided a private tour of his office.
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“This experience has taken my love for politics to a new level. I truly appreciate National Park College for investing in me and giving me the experience I need to move forward.” said Roger Powell. SGA Advisor, Samantha Christian added, “I love working with such professional and hardworking students. This was a great learning opportunity for our SGA officers to interact with our state government officials.”
Top Photo: Left to right, Senator Bill Sample, Advisors Samantha Christian and Melony Ritter, Aaron Johnson, Roger Powell, Governor Asa Hutchinson, Michelle Godwin, Representative John Vines, Riley Goad, Bruce Cozart, and Blas Cheairs Aguilar.

Magic Springs Crystal Falls Water Park Opens May 7

Crystal Falls Water Park will open May 7. Crystal Falls is Arkansas’s largest water park, boasting a wave pool, tube and race slides, and the Boogie Blast surf ride.

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The Magic Springs summer concert series will offer a star studded concert series with high- energy performances by top recording artist’s like Hunter Hayes – June 4 , MercyMe- June 18, Cheap Trick -June 25, . 38-Special takes the stage on July 23rd plus many more exciting concerts through August 13. All concerts are included with a season pass or general admission ticket with free lawn seating on a first-come, first-served basis at Timberwood Amphitheater. To view the entire lineup, visit MagicSprings.com/concerts.php.

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A Magic Springs season pass is $74.99 plus tax. This price allows for unlimited visits to the park plus up to 12 free shows at Arkansas’s largest concert series. The season pass also includes in-park discounts and opportunities to gain other perks, such as a souvenir bottle with discounted refills and a free friend ticket when the pass is processed at the park by specific dates. For more information on park pricing or to purchase a Season Pass, visit MagicSprings.com or call 501-624-0100.

Magic Springs Water and Theme Park is located at 1701 E. Grand Ave., Hot Springs, Ark., 71901.

Magic Springs Water and Theme Park was founded in 2000, and is Arkansas’s only water and theme park. For 16 years, Magic Springs has entertained thousands of Arkansans with gripping coasters, thrilling water rides, entertaining concerts and special events including Magic Screams and Hispanic Day. For more information, visit MagicSprings.com.

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Fifth Annual Hot Springs Fishing Challenge Starts May 1

Big Al is back, and he’s become a bit arrogant after eluding the best lures that anglers have thrown at him in the last four years! He’s worth $10,000 in cool cash to the person who manages to wrangle him to shore beginning May 1 in the Fifth Annual Hot Springs Fishing Challenge on Lakes Hamilton and Catherine at Hot Springs National Park, Arkansas.

Pot Sweetened to $86,000 again in the 5th Hot Springs Fishing Challenge With Bonus Fish and Locations Where Those Extra Fish Are Released

“Big Al may have become a bit too cocky after thumbing his nose at everyone who’s attempted to catch him since 2012,” Arrison said. “This could be the year his luck runs out and we hand over $10,000 to the lucky angler who brings him to the shore. I’d be happy if that happened.”
Big Al is the name given to a fish — could be a largemouth bass or one of five other species — bearing the lucky 2016 white tag.

“Once again, we are partnering with our friends at the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission and the Andrew Hulsey Fish Hatchery to bring this fun-filled contest to the people of Arkansas and our visitors. They select and tag the prize fish for us and they supervise the release of the fish into the lakes. Without them we could not possibly stage the Challenge.”

The Hot Springs Fishing Challenge begins at 6 a.m. May 1, 2016 and ends on July 31, 2016 at 5 p.m. Central Time. The Challenge provides anglers the opportunity to catch tagged fish that can be redeemed for cash prizes.

The contest is open to anyone with a valid Arkansas fishing license. Employees of the Hot Springs Advertising and Promotion Commission, the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission at the Andrew H. Hulsey Fish Hatchery, and their immediate family members, and/or those living in the same household of each are ineligible to win a cash prize.

How It Works: Sixty (60) tagged fish (total) will be released in Lake Hamilton and Lake Catherine.  The fish released will be largemouth bass, bluegill, catfish, white bass, crappie, and walleye. The tags will have a phone number and a prize number on them. If a fish is caught the angler must call the number and present the fish with the tag attached. The 11 bonus fish will be released one at a time on Tuesdays, starting May 12 and ending July 21.

The fish will be tagged by the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission and released in both lakes by a third party of impeccable credentials. No one will know the exact location of the release points except for this individual.

No cash prize will be awarded to any participant presenting a tagged fish that has been caught other than during the fishing period. Tags must be presented during the fishing period to be redeemed. All tagged fish must be caught in accordance with all state and local laws, codes, rules and regulations. Rules and regulations can be found at: http://www.agfc.com/fishing/Pages/FishingRegulations.aspx.

No cash prizes will be awarded to any participant who does not comply with state and local laws, codes, rules and regulations.

Publicity Release: Each angler who catches a prize fish grants Visit Hot Springs the rights to use their name, likeness, biographical information, and photographs, without compensation, in any and all media without limitation for advertising and promotional purposes.

General Prize Conditions: Prize winners shall be solely responsible for all federal, state and/or local taxes associated with their prize.

Prize Distribution: The tagged fish will each be assigned a number. Prize money will be divided as follows:
• 1 fish  $10,000
• 4 fish  $5,000
• 35 fish $1,000
• 11 bonus fish worth $1,000 each to be released one at a time on Tuesdays, starting May 12.
• 20 fish  $500

Total possible prize money if all fish are caught during the contest period is $86,000.
For additional information call Steve Arrison at 501-321-2027

Police Log

On April 29, 2016 at approximately 2:10 p.m. a white male, later identified as Richard Gale Cotton (DOB: 10/16/1967) entered the Simmons Bank at 515 West Grand Avenue. Cotton had a backpack with him and approached a bank teller. Cotton handed the teller a note indicating he had a bomb and demanded money.
The teller complied with Cotton’s demand and provided Cotton with an undisclosed amount of money. A GPS tracker was embedded in the money given to Cotton. Cotton fled the bank, leaving his backpack inside the bank. As soon as Cotton exited the bank, the GPS tracker alerted the Hot Springs Police Department of the robbery and the exact location of the money.
Officers responded to Simmons bank and evacuated the bank while other officers responded to the location of the GPS tracker embedded in the bank money. The GPS location with the money was being monitored real time by Hot Springs Police Dispatch and relayed to officers. HSPD officers located and conducted a felony traffic stop on a white 1997 Toyota Camry, which coordinated with the exact location of the embedded GPS device. The suspect vehicle was located and stopped at Broadway Street and Malvern Avenue. Richard Cotton was taken into custody without incident and arrested for Aggravated Robbery, Theft of Property over a $1000 by Force and Use of a Hoax Substance. Cotton was given no bond. An occupant in the 1997 Toyota Camry was interviewed and later released.
The Arkansas State Police Bomb Squad responded to Simmons Bank and after examining the backpack determined there was no bomb.

Hot Springs Street Closing Update

Olive Street, from Ouachita Avenue to Broadway, this includes crossing Central Avenue, will be closed to through traffic from Monday, May 2 until Friday, May 6 for a water line project. Signs will be posted, and motorists are advised to seek an alternate route during this street closure.