Oh sure, like being a nerd is such a bad thing in the 21st century. The geek has finally inherited the earth and continuously improves upon it through education and technology. Thankfully, Arkansas has its share of tech lovers, comic fans, culture critics, and those who are just overall curious about society’s less explored niches.
Northwest Arkansas has poured money into the arts scene to preserve culture, and from that cool idea we now have a generation full of many talented young people with their minds on paintbrushes and canvases - as well as other mediums. Seriously, Bentonville has become one of the best towns in the country for art geeks to come and get their creative juices flowing.
The great thing for niche specialists in northwest Arkansas are the number of bookstores and collector's boutiques that are in business. Rock Bottom Comics in Fayetteville is one great example of a location where comic fans and collectors can get their fill of enjoyment (and maybe come across a rare, vintage action figure)!
8. Siloam Springs
Someone must have spread word on social media that Siloam Springs is one of the most beautiful places in Arkansas (which it is), has some of the best coffee houses and farm-to-table restaurants in the state (which it does), and that every hipster in the midwest should go there either to live, work, or hang out in large groups at the coffee houses to sit around like an episode of Friends and play Candy Crush on their phones (which they did). Not that it's a problem at all, kids...just an observation. "Culture geeks" do exist...we just call them hipsters.
Did you go to GlitchCon this year? If you're "in the know"...then you did! Springdale hosts this three-day event that spans everything from anime, sci-fi, steampunk, and every kind of fandom you can imagine. Normies, stay home!
6. West Memphis
Comic fans in West Memphis have it pretty nice on the border. Not only do they get to enjoy the Memphis Comic and Fantasy Con coming up in November, but the town itself also hosts ShadowCon, a two day event each January that features fencing tournaments, vampire live action rol...oh, just call it LARPing, a belly dance party, and an "Auction of the Strange and Unusual" among many more events. Now THAT sounds like a good time!
Texarkana has been having a Renaissance Faire, and it's growing every year! The town has just celebrated its 4th annual event and the Faire looks to have been an awesome time. Not only does Texarkana get down with the RenFest set, but they also get to check out the Ark-La-Tex Comic Con every September as well!
4. Eureka Springs
I have a friend (he lives in Austin, Texas now, so he should know a thing or two about geekdom) that would always refer to Eureka Springs as "the land of the lotus eaters". It's true. If you don't fit in anywhere else in Arkansas, Eureka Springs is the place for you. Behind the charming Victorian town is a hotspot for different thinkers...was that you at the Ozark Mountain UFO Conference back in April, or was it at Zombie Tag the month before?
3. North Little Rock
Argenta is home to the Arkansas Regional Innovation Hub, a place where techies can not only feel at home and find like minded folks but also get quality education and information on how to make money from their technological talent, such as forming startup companies and pitching creative ideas.
2. Little Rock
Conway remains the home of Acxiom, but Little Rock is where a lot of the action is for tech specialists, too, as the company's headquarters are downtown. Technology isn't the only thing Little Rock nerds flock to, either - comic conventions have grown in popularity and both the Little Rock Comic Con and the River City Comic Expo have more and more visitors and media attention each year.
Stroll around the campus of UCA for a little while and you'll find where the techies are pretty quickly. In fact, courses in computer science, programming, and management are gaining popularity thanks to our quickly changing world. Don't forget that Conway is the homebase of global marketing corporation Acxiom, either. Thanks, tech guys!
So where are you at, techies? Sound out, cosplayers! Show these normies what you’re all about and tell us where else in Arkansas you like to go to be yourself. Post a comment about these towns and other places in the Natural State that are naturally made for the geek elite!