Organizers say new attendees will be “blown away” by programming
CONWAY, Ark. (April 9, 2019) – In less than one month, the 38th annual Toad Suck Daze festival will kick off in downtown Conway. Today, presenting sponsors Cherokee Nation Entertainment and First Arkansas Bank & Trust announced entertainment, expanded programming, and $130,000 in charitable contributions.
Friday night entertainment will feature country music group A Thousand Horses. Their debut single “Smoke” went all the way to No. 1 on the Billboard charts. They have landed multiple awards show nominations, most recently vying for the title of “New Vocal Duo or Group of the Year” at the 52nd annual ACM Awards.
Saturday night brings three-time Grammy winner and songwriting legend Steve Earle to Conway. Earle’s hits “Copperhead Road” and “Guitar Town” launched a genre-crossing career that has spanned five decades.
All festival entertainment is presented by Crain Buick GMC and Crain Kia of Conway.
Expanded Tinkerfest Activities
In 2018, Toad Suck Daze partnered with the Museum of Discovery to provide a Discovery Network membership to 24 central Arkansas elementary schools. The Discovery Network provides high-quality professional STEM development and training opportunities to participating schools. During this year’s festival, those schools will help anchor a “Toad Suck Daze Tinkerfest” area that will double in size.
Presented by Acxiom, this year’s Tinkerfest area will take up two city blocks and include these attractions:
- Museum of Discovery “Awesome Science” shows, Conway Symphony Orchestra “Instrument Petting Zoo,” and interactive performances from Arkansas Shakespeare Theatre, all sponsored by Crain Hyundai of Conway & More
- PBS Kids characters sponsored by Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield
- Mobile MakerSpace from the Arkansas Innovation Hub sponsored by American Management Corporation
- Programming from the Conductor sponsored by Flywheel Energy
- A 5,000-square-foot temporary Museum of Discovery Exhibit sponsored by Nabholz Construction
- And dozens of other educational and fun stations.
The Toad Suck Daze Committee presented more than $130,000 in contributions to seven area nonprofits and scholarship recipients at the Tuesday announcement:
- Arkansas Discovery Network - $43,000
- Imagination Library - $30,000 (This will provide books monthly to 1,200 children ages 0-5.)
- Conway Downtown Partnership - $20,000 (This pays for more than 400 hanging baskets downtown.)
- Arkansas Shakespeare Theatre - $3,500
- University of Arkansas Community College at Morrilton - $2,000
- Conway Symphony Orchestra - $2,000
- Red Curtain Theatre - $1,500
The committee also announced $18,000 in scholarships to seven Faulkner County students.
Brad Lacy, president and CEO of the Conway Area Chamber of Commerce, says that the festival has grown far beyond its local origins.
“Toad Suck Daze is an Arkansas icon that continues to grow in influence. Our sponsors are from around the state and surrounding states. Our contributions are helping kids all over Arkansas. I think families that are attending the festival for the first time will be blown away by the variety and quality of our programming.”
About Toad Suck Daze
For more than 35 years, a central Arkansas festival with a quirky name has contributed more than $1.8 million to scholarships, scholarship endowments, preschool funding, and arts education. As Arkansas’s largest festival, Toad Suck Daze attracts more than 100,000 festivalgoers of all ages to downtown Conway the first weekend of May for national and local musical entertainment, food-on-a-stick, retail and arts-and-crafts vendors, and most notably, the World Championship Toad Races. For more information about Toad Suck Daze, visit ToadSuck.org.