Before 2007, I had never heard of Lakeport Plantation. To me, Lake Village, AR, was just a dot on a map. In September 2007, I was introduced to this fabulous treasure of Arkansas by Dr. Jeannie Whayne, a professor of history at the University of Arkansas. Dr. Whayne and I, along with two other history students, went to the Grand Opening of Lakeport Plantation. We had an AMAZING time! Lakeport is an Arkansas Heritage Site - part of ASU’s preservation work in the Arkansas Delta. The 1858 plantation was donated to Arkansas State University in 2003, and after 4 years of hard work and dedication to historical accuracy, Lakeport was opened to the public.
The weekend of spring break, I had the opportunity to return to Lakeport with my family, and it was just as beautiful as it was at its Grand Opening! So much more work has taken place in the house and on the grounds. Sarah Long, Museum Assistant, remembered the University of Arkansas group from the Grand Opening, and she was just as hospitable this time as she was in 2007 - she gave us a first-class tour. The plantation and education center are both open on weekdays at 10:00 and 2:00, and a tour is well worth the trip!
When the U of A group went to Lake Village in 2007, we discovered a place called Rhoda's Famous Hot Tamales on St. Mary Street. I could not let a trip to Lake Village pass without stopping in to say hello to Miss Rhoda and to eat a few tamales and a fried pie! Miss Rhoda kept my family laughing the whole time. We can't wait to go back!
Thank you, ASU, for your dedication to the Delta, a place full of culture, history, and beautiful places. Thank you, Sarah Long, for the fabulous tour (and for the fried chicken in 2007 from the Lakeshore Cafe!). And thank you, Miss Rhoda, for your famous hot tamales and beaming personality. Looking forward to another trip!