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Facelift coming for iconic Hot Springs building


HOT SPRINGS, Ark. (KTHV) -- The skinny white brick building at Central Avenue and Bridge Street is a familiar sight to millions of Hot Springs visitors, but for 40 years, the old First Federal building on the route of the world's shortest St. Patrick's Day Parade has been gradually decaying.

"It was actually the city's first skyscraper," said Cole McCaskill, the Downtown Development Director for the Hot Springs Metro Partnership. "Rumor has it the original contractor went bankrupt mainly because he spared no expense."

Being solidly built using now impossible to find Tiffany brick may be why this seven-story structure doesn't look more rundown, despite being vacant since 1978 when First Federal Mutual and later Citizens Bank cleared out.

Now, owner Jason Taylor has big plans for the landmark.

City of Hot Springs begins adding fluoride to water supply


HOT SPRINGS, Ark. (AP) - The city of Hot Springs has started adding fluoride into its water supply.

City officials said Tuesday that the process of introducing fluoride began Monday at the city's Ouachita Water Treatment Plant.

The Sentinel-Record (http://bit.ly/1ZC0QRu) reports a law enacted by the state Legislature in 2011 requires certain municipalities, based on population, to use fluoride during water treatment. Based on the requirement, the Hot Springs plant implemented a plan to install equipment needed to introduce fluoride in the water.

Larry Merriman, major capital projects manager for the city, says Arkansas Department of Health officials were on hand to help calibrate devices.

Rabies confirmed in bat found near Hot Springs apartment


HOT SPRINGS, Ark. (AP) - Hot Springs officials say a bat found outside city limits has tested positive for rabies.

Animal Services Director Dan Bugg says a woman who lives in an apartment found the bat earlier this week when she went outside to walk her dog. An animal control officer safely captured the bat, and officials say there was no evidence of human exposure to the bat.

The Arkansas Department of Health has recorded 73 confirmed cases of rabies in animals so far this year. Most of those are in skunks, but there are also 16 bats, two cows, one dog and one fox that have tested positive.

The department says Pulaski County has the highest number of rabies cases at 12.

(Copyright 2015 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)


Hot Springs' website wins Ark. Business' Distinction Award

Hot Springs' website wins Ark. Business' Distinction Award

HOT SPRINGS – Members of the Hot Springs Board of Directors accepted Arkansas Business’ 2015 City of Distinction Technology Advancements Award for cities over 20,000 in population at an awards ceremony during the recent Arkansas Municipal League Fall Conference.

The award was given to Hot Springs for the development of its website. It is featured in a full-page article within an Arkansas Business special report.

Hot Springs museum caters to Star Wars fans


HOT SPRINGS, Ark. (KTHV) - On Hopson Avenue in downtown Hot Springs, there's a bright yellow building filled with Star Wars memorabilia.

And on the eve of the big release of The Force Awakens, it's a Star Wars fanatic's dream you have to see.

Episode 4, A New Hope, was the 1977 Star Wars movie that started it all for Jon Clowers. The Hot Springs man began collecting Star Wars memorabilia as a child.

Hot Springs recognized as "Thriving Community" by Ark. Coalition for Obesity Prevention


HOT SPRINGS, Ark. - The city of Hot Springs was recognized as a "Thriving Community" by the Arkansas Coalition for Obesity Prevention for its Growing Healthy Communities work during the past year.

Thriving Community, the highest designation awarded by ArCOP, is based on the city's efforts to become a healthier community through data collection, environmental changes and policy changes. Hot Springs was among eight communities in Arkansas to receive the top award. In addition, 12 Arkansas communities received the Blossoming Community designation, and 17 received Emerging Community status.

Henderson professor to talk heroes, superheroes at ASMSA lecture

Henderson professor to talk heroes, superheroes at ASMSA lecture

HOT SPRINGS, Ark. — Henderson State University psychology professor Dr. Travis Langley believes comic book superheroes have the ability to teach us about heroes in real life.

Langley will share some of his knowledge about the subject at the Arkansas School for Mathematics, Sciences and the Arts Science and Café Lecture on Thursday. He is the featured speaker at the event, which will be held at 7 p.m. at Kollective Coffee and Tea, 110 Central Ave. He will speak on “Psychology and Superheroes,” including how superheroes are good stand-ins for the study of what makes real-life heroes.

His lecture will focus on several particular superheroes such as Iron Man, Captain America and Batman. He called them some of the most down-to-earth superheroes, because they don’t have superpowers. They have very human qualities that make them more relatable to real-life individual, according to Langley.