A very merry Maumelle
Chad Gardner and the Maumelle City Council report, Planning Commission meets, Muss Bus has a flat tire, White Christmas? "Not Gonna Happen." Poinsettias are beautiful plus news and sports headlines
Note to subscribers: An annual or monthly subscription is billed to your debit or credit card as ARKANSAS.SUBSTACK.COM and if you have questions, please email firstname.lastname@example.org. Thanks for reading and subscribing!
Due to the Christmas holiday, city offices in Maumelle and North Little Rock will be closed Thursday, Dec. 23 and Friday, Dec. 24. The ArkansasNewsroom.com office will be closed both days as well, with the newsletter coming out today
A very merry Maumelle
Arkansas Razorbacks: It was a disappointing night for the Arkansas Razorbacks on Saturday as the No. 24 Razorbacks lost, 89-81, to unranked Hofstra at North Little Rock and read more by clicking Hofstra 89, No. 24 Arkansas 81: Hogs lose at Simmons Bank Arena or click the image above.
Neal Moore is taking the week off.
Arkansas Newsroom is a reader-supported publication. To receive new posts and support our work, consider becoming a free or paid subscriber.
At this week’s Maumelle City Council meeting, Mayor Caleb Norris recognized Thomas Miller from the Public Works Department as the city’s employee of the month. By Chad Gardner and to read more click Maumelle City Council report
The Maumelle Planning Commission had its meeting a week early due to the Christmas holiday as it was held last Thursday, Dec. 16.
The meeting had three items of new business and you can view the agenda by clicking here and watch a stream of the meeting by clicking below.
The meeting was an hour and 10 minutes long, so get a cup of coffee if you want to watch the whole thing.
To read more click Maumelle Planning Commission meets
Keep dreaming, Bing, because “it is not gonna happen.”
At least in terms of having a White Christmas here or anywhere else in Arkansas.
Meteorologists at the National Weather Service office in North Little Rock wrote, “The odds of seeing a white Christmas in Arkansas are already low to begin with but with widespread highs in the 60s [and] 70s on Christmas day this year, its simply not gonna happen.”
So maybe plan a new tradition? Like a cookout and cornhole tournament on Christmas Day? Maybe instead of the Christmas sweater contest, you compete with Christmas flip-flops? A luau? It will be a beautiful day, so at least try to be outside for a bit.
Historically, a White Christmas here has been extremely rare.
The National Weather Service has been keeping records in Arkansas since 1875 and the state saw snowfall in just 12 of those years on Christmas, while in three other years, the state already had snow on the ground, so people at least woke up to a White Christmas.
Of the 15 times, Arkansas has had a White Christmas, measurable snow was seen four times, with flurries or trace amounts falling eight times. The other three times were from Christmas Eve, or earlier, snow.
“Going by the averages, there is snow in the air or covering the ground on Christmas about once every nine to ten years,” the meteorologists said in 2019. “It is much more rare to have snow start on Christmas and accumulate (more than a trace on the ground) before the end of the day.”
That’s happened just twice, 1926 and the still somewhat recent Blizzard of 2012.
And 2012 was memorable for more than just being a White Christmas, it was the day where Arkansas saw a recorded nine inches of snow.
That was just what was recorded in Little Rock, most other parts of the state saw more than 10 inches of snow, with portions of north-central Arkansas getting 15 to a high of 17.5 inches, fall that day.
The snow didn’t stop either, 1.3 inches of snow were recorded in Little Rock on the following day, with other portions of the state getting more.
That White Christmas was also the first, and last, time the Weather Service issued a “blizzard warning” for northeast Arkansas. Making it the state’s first “official blizzard.”
The results from the snow were fairly typical, snarled roads, stranded travelers and more than 260,000 homes and businesses lost power that day, with the state taking a week, or more to recover.
Past White Christmases
1876: Two inches of snow was on the ground from snowfall on Christmas Eve.
1879: Christmas Eve rain changed to snow, which continued into Christmas morning.
1887: Snow fell with no accumulation.
1897: one inch of snow fell on Christmas Day morning.
1913: Snow started at midnight and continued on Christmas Day. A total of 1.5 inches of snow fell.
1914: Snow fell with no accumulation.
1918: Snow fell with no accumulation.
1926: Sleet turned into snow with a total of 1.7 inches of sleet and 2.5 inches of snow.
1935: Snow fell with no accumulation.
1939: Snow fell with no accumulation.
1962: Christmas Eve snow of 1.5 inches but it melted during the night leaving only patches of snow on the ground Christmas morning.
In 1963: Heavy snow on Dec. 22 left more than four inches still on the ground by Christmas Day.
1975: Snow fell with no accumulation.
1983: Snow from earlier that week left about an inch of snow and ice still on the ground.
1990: 2.4 inches of snow and sleet fell earlier in the week and most of it remained on the ground through Christmas Day.
2000: A trace of snow was on the ground on Christmas Day but the worst was still to come as a major long-term ice storm developed that day and continued through Dec. 27. It left three inches of ice in Little Rock and more around the state, completely shutting down Arkansas in one of the worst ice storms in recorded history.
2009: Snow fell with no accumulation.
2012: Nine inches of snow in Little Rock, with more around Arkansas for the state’s snowiest White Christmas.
As Christmas traditions go, a poinsettia wasn’t among them.
Perhaps it was the plant’s reported toxicity towards pets and children that kept them away or perhaps it was something else, but the bright red, white and green foliage, while familiar, wasn’t a Christmas constant like, say, a Christmas tree or stockings.
That’s not true for everyone and it was much appreciated when Rebekah Hall with the U of A System Division of Agriculture, offered some helpful tips and trivia on the poinsettia.
Most importantly, “poinsettias are not very toxic to pets,” Hall wrote. It is true that the plant’s milky sap can be a mild irritant to the mouth of pets when the plant is chewed, so it isn’t great for pets, or curious toddlers, but not toxic.
There’s also a connection between Arkansas and the Poinsettia that wasn’t taught in the history classes, it might have also been a lack of attention that missed this connection but Arkansas’s Poinsett County and the plant are both named for the same person – Joel Roberts Poinsett of South Carolina, who was a congressman there and also a botanist. He was also a native of Mexico, and brought clippings back from his home country to plant in the United States.
Poinsettia plants also happen to bloom around the Christmas holiday, which also helps its festive connection.
The plant’s popularity surged in the 1960s when they were used as decoration in television studios and were prominent in holiday specials from Bob Hope as well as Johnny Carson’s Tonight Show.
If you get a poinsettia, you can keep it alive throughout the year with just a little care.
Avoid exposing the plant to heat above 80 degrees or below 50 degrees and try to place the plant in direct sunlight. The plants also prefer moist soil, so water when the potting feels dry but be sure that the water drains as that will keep the plant from getting root and stem diseases. An occasional round of houseplant fertilizer will help keep the poinsettia going but isn’t necessary.
When summer arrives, the poinsettia can move outside to indirect sunlight and this is when fertilizer becomes more important.
When September rolls around, the plant needs to move back inside and make sure it gets plenty of sunlight at least until October. That’s when the plant needs 11 hours of bright sunlight daily, but also 13 hours of complete darkness. The darkness is what makes the blooms so vibrant, so you’ll need a box to cover it.
Until Thanksgiving, that’s when the box comes off and move the plant so it gets six hours of direct sunlight daily.
For an informative video, watch below: