Ten things you may not have known about Arkansas:
- Crater of Diamonds State Park, located just outside Murfreesboro, allows dedicated prospectors to search for precious gems including diamonds, amethyst, garnet, jasper, agate, and quartz.
- Arkansas became the 25th state admitted to the Union on June 15, 1836.
- The apple blossom is the official state flower.
- Ouachita National Forest in western Arkansas is the oldest national forest in the South.
- The geographic center of the state is located in Pulaski, 12 miles northwest of Little Rock.
- The World's Championship Duck Calling Contest is held annually in Stuttgart.
- Arkansas contains over 600,000 acres of lakes and 9,700 miles of streams and rivers.
- 47 hot springs flow from the southwestern slope of Hot Springs Mountain, at an average temperature of 143 F.
- Arkansas ranks 14th among states in cash receipts from farm marketings, with a total of 4,973,164 harvested acres.
- As I write this, I am about 997.72 miles from Little Rock, Arkansas.
Fact no. 10 comes via the startlingly useful "How far away are you?" feature of the Arkansas Department of Parks & Tourism web site. This is exactly the kind of thing that makes the Internet great.