Exploring Arkansas

Get a new perspective on Arkansas and the world! "Exploring Arkansas" is joining "Nature" and "NOVA" on Think Wednesdays at 6:30 p.m.

Before coming to AETN, Chuck Dovish was mainly known for his "Travelin' Arkansas" segments which aired on KTHV-Channel 11 for more than 25 years. Since October of 2005, Chuck has been producing and hosting "Exploring Arkansas" which showcases all the high adventure the Natural State has to offer. This one-of-a-kind program features the most breathtaking and spectacular sights in Arkansas. There's extreme adventure like hang gliding, kayaking, rappelling, rock climbing, wild caving and not to mention some of Arkansas's best kept secrets such as secluded and scenic waterfalls.

Chuck has been exploring Arkansas for more than 40 years and continues to surprise and entertain viewers with his sights and subjects. His philosophy throughout the years has always been to illuminate the culture and heritage of Arkansas, in addition to conservation and preservation of the pristine outdoors of the Natural State. Exploring Arkansas was the 2009 recipient of the Sierra Club Conservation Award. Chuck says he's always trying to promote our great state in any way, shape or form that he can.

Episodes in August

8/2 Marinoni Scenic Area, Old Fort Days Dandies, AR Fiddlers Convention, Birdhouse Capital of America
The Marinoni Scenic Area north of Ozark in the Ozark National Forest near the Mulberry River, is an enchanting and exhilarating place with waterfalls, majestic bluffs, giant ferns and boulders. Branson may have the Dixie Stampede, but Fort Smith has its own Old Fort Days Dandies - a special group of young ladies who are known for their superior horsemanship across the country. The Arkansas Fiddlers Convention is a four-day jam session extravaganza held every May in Harrison. The small Arkansas Delta town of Elaine - population 636 -- is known as the "Birdhouse Capital Of America" - 800 and counting.
8/9 Bayou Bartholomew - World's Longest Bayou
Examines the history of the bayou dating back 3,000 years, but it also reveals how it's been long overlooked for its contribution in developing the heart of the Delta and neglected in American history. People who have lived all their lives along the bayou, in both Arkansas and Louisiana, will also share their stories dating back to the steamboat era on the bayou.

8/16 (Re-air of August 2)
Marinoni Scenic Area, Old Fort Days Dandies, AR Fiddlers Convention, Birdhouse Capital of America.
8/23 Crappie Fishing, Mountain View Swimmin' Hole, Jacksonville Museum of Military History, Charlotte's Eats & Sweets
Lake Greeson in southwest Arkansas has long been known for its great crappie fishing. Catching "slab" crappie in the 17-inch category is not out of the norm. Along North Sylamore Creek near Mountain View, near the North Sylamore Creek Trailhead is a secluded swimmin' hole complete with a rope swing that is quite popular with the locals. Jacksonville Museum of Military History sits on the old Arkansas Ordnance Plant site which manufactured bomb parts during WWII. She's known to many as the pie queen of the South—Charlotte Bowls of Keo who creates her 10-inch high meringue pies in a historic pharmacy building.
8/30 Buffalo River Millie, Whitewater Recreation Park, Longpool Swimmin' Hole
88-year old Millie Calhoun's dream has always been to float the Buffalo National River. We made that dream come true by arranging her very first float trip down America's first national river. The Whitewater Recreation Park along the Illinois River south of Siloam Springs, provides kayaking adventure for both beginners and experts…not to mention tubing fun for everyone. A popular swimmin' hole is located at the Longpool Recreation Area along Big Piney Creek near Dover. Huge boulders provide natural diving platforms. Kayaking and canoeing can also be enjoyed on this creek.
"Exploring Arkansas" received the Second Place Journalism Award from the Arkansas chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists in 2011.

Episodes

Blog

  • Chuck’s Blog – “Exploring Arkansas: August 2017”
    Hiking through the breathtaking Marinoni Scenic Area, hanging out with the precision riding team known as the “Old Fort Days Dandies,” fiddling around at the Arkansas Fiddlers Convention and visiting the Birdhouse Capital of America – it’s all coming up during a brand new episode of “Exploring Arkansas” on Wednesday, Aug. 2.
  • Chuck’s Blog – “Exploring Arkansas: July 2017”
    Reliving the Doolittle Raid with a Marine B-25 “ghost” plane, hiking to Rattlesnake Falls in the Ozark National Forest, visiting the historic town of Leslie, attending the World Championship Steak Cook-Off in Magnolia and mountain biking along the Pigeon Creek National Recreation Trail along the shores of Norfork Lake near Mountain Home – it’s all on the next brand new edition of “Exploring Arkansas,” Wednesday, July 5, at 6:30 p.m.
  • Chuck’s Blog – “Exploring Arkansas: June 2017”
    Frolicking throughout Camden’s millions of daffodils, getting a haircut in the oldest barbershop in the nation, attending the Arkansas Outdoor School and having lunch at the iconic Pickens Store and Restaurant: it’s all coming up during a brand new edition of “Exploring Arkansas,” Wednesday, June 7.
  • Chuck’s Blog — “Exploring Arkansas” May 2017
    Experiencing Conway’s unique Cadron Settlement Park, digging for quartz crystals near the Quartz Crystal Capital of the World, exploring the long lost resort town of Monte Ne along the shores of Beaver Lake, and floating Grassy Lake at the Bell Slough Wildlife Management Area near Mayflower – it’s all coming up during a brand new episode of “Exploring Arkansas” on Wednesday, May 3!
  • Chuck’s Blog — “Exploring Arkansas” April 2017
    Observing bald eagles, hiking to a Native American bluff shelter with a historic spring, visiting the oldest log structure in the state and chowing down on some famous hot tamales – it’s all coming up in a brand new edition of “Exploring Arkansas” Wednesday, April 5!
  • “Exploring Arkansas” – Feb. 2017
    From a cast iron cook off and driving along the Pig Trail Scenic Byway to hiking the Black Fork Mountain Trail and learning about the pioneers who farmed the Grand Prairie of Eastern Arkansas, it’s all in the next edition of “Exploring Arkansas,” airing Wednesday, Feb. 1, at 6:30 p.m.
  • “Exploring Arkansas” – Jan. 2017
    Experiencing folklife in the Ozarks from long ago, enjoying a backyard railroad like none other, taking a drive along the Ozark Highlands Scenic Byway, and teaming up with a mule team wagon train – it’s all coming up in a brand new episode of “Exploring Arkansas” Wednesday, Jan. 4!
  • “Exploring Arkansas” December 2016
    Alligators, a recreated 19th century village, a Native American bluff shelter with petroglyphs that happens to be on a golf course, and a five-star restaurant in the middle of nowhere? It’s all coming up in a brand new edition of “Exploring Arkansas,” Wednesday, Dec. 7, at 6:30 p.m.
  • Chuck’s Blog — “Exploring Arkansas” November 2016
    Coming up Nov. 2 in a brand new “Exploring Arkansas” episode, we’ll take you from one historic swinging bridge near Mountain View to another one in Beaver, check out some unusual fairy tale sculpture/architecture near Eureka Springs, visit the oldest church in Arkansas near Searcy, and look back to the day folks in Paragould thought they were experiencing the end of the world.
  • Chuck’s Blog – “Exploring Arkansas” Sept. 2016
    From crappie fishing to taking a cool dip in an Ozark swimming hole to chomping down on one of the South’s prized coconut cream pies — it’s all coming up (and then some!) in a brand new episode of “Exploring Arkansas” on Wednesday, Sept. 7, at 6:30 p.m.
  • Chuck’s Blog — “Exploring Arkansas” Aug. 2016
    Coming up in a brand new episode of “Exploring Arkansas” Wednesday, Aug. 3, we’ll attend an open air painting festival in Eureka Springs, take part in all the fishing fun at Bear Creek Lake in the St. Francis National Forest, dine in a jetliner restaurant and learn about the forgotten tragedy of the sinking of the Sultana near Marion.
  • Chuck’s Blog – “Exploring Arkansas” July 2016
    From pickin’ and grinnin’ at the Arkansas Folk Festival … to visiting an Ozark paradise complete with cabins and waterfalls…to visiting a town which was once called “Arkansas’s Dream Town”— it’s all coming up in a brand new edition of “Exploring Arkansas,” Wednesday, July 6, at 6:30 p.m.
  • Chuck’s Blog – “Exploring Arkansas” June 2016
    From hiking to a remote waterfall in the Ozark National Forest and tiptoeing through the tulips at Garvan Woodland Gardens to making a phone call from one of the last remaining working phone booths and enjoying a bologna sandwich at the Hollis Country Store – it’s all coming up in a brand new edition of “Exploring Arkansas.” 
  • Chuck’s Blog: Exploring Arkansas Feb. 2016
    A dream castle, the re-opening of a 1905 general store, a moonshiners cave by the falls and enjoying a huge hubcap burger – it’s all coming up in the next brand new episode of “Exploring Arkansas” Monday, Feb. 1, at 6:30 p.m.
  • Chuck’s Blog – “Exploring Arkansas” Oct. 2015
    Take the old poodle skirt out of mothballs, get out the butch wax for that flat top haircut and shine up the chrome on the ‘57 Chevy, ‘cause we’re taking you to back to the drive-in during a brand new episode of “Exploring Arkansas,” Monday, Oct. 5, at 6:30 p.m.
  • Chuck’s Blog - “Exploring Arkansas” August 2015
    Coming up in a brand new episode of “Exploring Arkansas” on Monday, Aug. 3, we'll explore the outdoor world in a fascinating way with a new addition at Mid-America Science Museum, take a dip in the "Shine Eye" swimming hole, visit the 20th Century Doll Museum and stop by the Potts Inn!
  • Chuck’s Blog – June “Exploring Arkansas”
    The Natural State’s newest scenic byway, an impressive twin waterfall, one of the South’s most famous grist mills and a picturesque backpacking trail in the Ouachita National Forest – they’re all in store for the latest edition of “Exploring Arkansas” coming up Monday, June 1, at 6:30 p.m.!
  • Chuck’s Blog – “Exploring Arkansas” May 2015
    Coming up in a brand new “Exploring Arkansas” episode for May 4, we’ll hike to one of the largest natural stone bridges in the state, shoot some arrows with a primitive bow maker and get a taste of heaven on the palate with a family whose maple syrup gathering spans six generations.
  • Chuck’s Blog — “Exploring Arkansas” April 2015
    Coming up in a brand new episode of "Exploring Arkansas" on Monday, April 6, at 6:30 p.m., we’ll visit and jam with Arkansas’s Fiddle Queen, take you to view bald eagles along the White River near Bull Shoals and introduce you to the original duck dynasty.
  • Chuck’s Blog - “Exploring Arkansas” February 2015
    Reliving the lifestyle and adventure of the American frontier, going on a photography outing along the Mulberry River in autumn and restoring wagons of the Old West – it’s all coming up during a brand new “Exploring Arkansas” episode on Monday, Feb. 2, at 6:30 p.m.!
  • Chuck’s Blog – January 2015 “Exploring Arkansas”
    The first new “Exploring Arkansas” for 2015 includes fly-fishing with a world champion gold medalist, float-fishing for smallmouth bass and spending time with a log master craftsman – all coming up Monday, Jan. 5, at 6:30 p.m.
  • Chuck’s Blog — “Exploring Arkansas” Jan. 2016
    From 4-wheeling atop Mt. Magazine, to attending the South’s largest craft fair, to touring a historic Victorian mansion, to taking a drive along the “Take Your Breath Away” scenic route — it’s all coming up during a brand new episode of “Exploring Arkansas” on Monday, Jan. 4, at 6:30 p.m.
  • Spring is here! Make the most of season with "Exploring Arkansas."
    The sun's shining, the flowers are blooming and these balmy temperature make it easy to enjoy Arkansas's great outdoors! Shake off the winter blues and get ready to discover the wonders around you with the "Exploring Arkansas" website. From Chuck Dovish's top 10 favorite places to a search feature that lets you find sights and activities near you, we have everything you need to plan your own adventure!
  • June “Exploring Arkansas” - Hiking, Boatbuilding, Expeditions & Battlefields
    From hiking a picturesque trail overlooking the Little Red River in Heber Springs, to visiting with a wooden boat builder in Bentonville, to spending time with students at DeSoto Bluff overlooking the Ouachita River in Arkadelphia, to learning about a Civil War skirmish at Reed’s Bridge Battlefield Heritage Park in Jacksonville – you won’t want to miss the next brand new edition of “Exploring Arkansas” airing Monday, June 2, at 6:30 p.m.
  • Chuck’s Blog - “Exploring Arkansas” April 2016
    Wednesday evening, April 6, marks the start of a brand new night for “Exploring Arkansas” with a special new episode that stops into Osage Clayworks, the National Park Aquarium, Arkansas Living Treasure Lorrie Popow’s studio and the Palarm Creek Waterfowl Rest Area. Join us to kick off AETN’s Think Wednesday programming (and stay after with great episodes of “Nature” and “NOVA”) at 6:30 p.m.
  • Chuck’s Blog – “Exploring Arkansas” Sept. 2015
    From Pivot Rock to Rock ‘n’ Roll Highway 67 and everything else in between – the brand new Labor Day edition of “Exploring Arkansas” promises to give you some great ideas to get out and explore The Natural State during this holiday period. Tune in Monday, Sept. 7, at 6:30 p.m.
  • "Bayou Bartholomew" Premieres Thursday, March 14
    Two years in the making, our one-hour documentary on the world’s longest bayou – Bayou Bartholomew is finally set to premiere on AETN Thursday, March 14, at 6:30 p.m.  
  • Chuck’s Blog - “Exploring Arkansas” July 2015
    The Arkansas Sphinx, big bass on little Lake Atkins, and life at Subiaco Abbey and Academy – it’s all coming up in a brand new Exploring Arkansas episode Monday, July 6 at 6:30 p.m.
  • Exploring Arkansas: Northbound & Down … Loaded Up & Truckin’
    Monday, Jan. 7, at 6:30 p.m. "Exploring Arkansas" is going to do what definitely can be done: take you down the Ozark Moonshine Run, which forms a 110 mile loop south of Harrison, utilizing six state highways. Now, while running into some “white lightning” is highly unlikely, you will experience what many travelers refer to as “the most picturesque route in northwest Arkansas,” since part of the drive takes you along a couple of the less traveled roads in that part of the state. 
  • Chuck’s Blog – “Exploring Arkansas” May 2016
    “To the Bat Cave, Robin!” That was a classic line in the old “Batman” TV series, and we visit Batesville to go there - in a sense - and then make stops at Gravity Hill, the Josephine Tussaud Wax Museum and Mount Magazine in a brand new episode of “Exploring Arkansas”! Come with us on Wednesday, May 4, at 6:30 p.m.
  • Chuck's Blog - Plantation Homes of Arkansas
    They came to Arkansas from Kentucky, Tennessee and Virginia to the rich river soil of the Delta. “Planters” arrived to grow the king of all crops – cotton. The stately homes these planters built with a unique architectural style, steeped in Southern history, exemplified the plantation era. Experience the plantation homes of Arkansas that have not … gone with the wind ... Monday, Dec. 2, at 6:30 p.m.
  • Chuck's Blog - October "Exploring Arkansas"
    Aircraft from the Golden Age of Aviation, visiting the place where the “man in black” grew up, and wild and woolly rawhide adventure racing chuckwagons – it’s all on the next brand new episode of “Exploring Arkansas,” Monday, Oct. 6, at 6:30 p.m.
  • Chuck’s Blog - September “Exploring Arkansas”
    From walking on water, to mountain biking, to mountain man trout fishing to taking a dip in not one but two refreshing swimmin’ holes – it’s a great way to travel the Natural State in a brand new episode of “Exploring Arkansas” on AETN!
  • Arkansas's National Wildlife Refuges
    Often referred to as “America’s Best Kept Secret,” National Wildlife Refuges protect unique ecosystems all across America. Host Chuck Dovish travels to nine of Arkansas’s national wildlife refuges that host waterfowl, bald eagles and other unique plants and animals.
  • Chuck’s Blog – “Exploring Arkansas” Nov. 2015
    Ever get stuck between a rock and a hard place? Well, in a brand new episode of “Exploring Arkansas” on Monday, Nov. 2, I found myself in exactly that kind of predicament during a mountain bike outing in Fayetteville.
  • Chuck's Blog - Snorkeling, Wildcaving & Kayaking
    Snorkeling, wild caving and floating down the river! Three fantastic ways to enjoy and explore Arkansas are coming up Monday, Nov. 4, at 6:30 p.m. during a brand new episode of “Exploring Arkansas.”
  • “Exploring Arkansas” – March 2017
    Coming up in a brand new edition of “Exploring Arkansas,” we’re seeing how restoring murals is revitalizing a town’s history and art; reliving Ozark history by experiencing the lifestyle in early pioneer historic buildings; finding out about the “white” in White Cliffs Natural Area and trying not to “shoot my eye out” at the Daisy Airgun Museum. Watch with us in the premiere on Wednesday, March 1, at 6:30 p.m.
  • “Exploring Arkansas” now in HD – premieres January 2
    “Exploring Arkansas” in HD – premieres Jan. 2 and includes trips to some truly unexpected places you can’t always find in Arkansas.  And believe me, you won’t want to miss Chuck in a pirate’s shirt.  What struck me is how appropriate it looks on him.  A previous life as a pirate explorer me thinks?  I’m not too sure I’m that far off with that one mateys.  And now shot in HD, even more beautiful.
  • February "Exploring Arkansas" - An Ozark Winter
    From a snowy river overlook, to an icy waterfall, to a “snow float” – the beauty of an Ozark winter will be featured during the latest “Exploring Arkansas” episode Monday, Feb. 3, at 6:30 p.m. Learn more about our visits to the Mulberry River, Glory Hole Falls, Crooked Creek and the Grant County Museum after the jump.
  • Exploring Arkansas - New Februrary Episode
    If you’d like to get a jump on  the upcoming float season…check out our brand new Exploring Arkansas episode on Monday, February 4.  In the first segment we’ll take you down War Eagle Creek north of Huntsville near Withrow Springs State Park. Also, join us to explore Blanchard Springs Caverns, the Petit Jean River WMA and newly discovered waterfalls near Ozark, Ark.
  • Chuck’s Blog – “Exploring Arkansas Special Edition: Hauntings of Arkansas”
    There are ghost stories, and then there are GHOST stories! Just in case you didn’t know it, Arkansas happens to allegedly be quite haunted! Yes, ghost stories abound everywhere and on Wednesday, Oct. 5, at 6:30 p.m. in a special edition of “Exploring Arkansas,” we’ll bring it all to you in “Hauntings of Arkansas”!
  • Chuck’s Blog — “Exploring Arkansas” March 2016
    From striper fishing ... to being catapulted in the air at a bike park ... to exploring a cave for a lost civilization … to chowing down on some ribs at a popular family-owned barbecue restaurant – it’s all coming up Monday, March 7, at 6:30 p.m. on “Exploring Arkansas!”
  • July "Exploring Arkansas" – Hiking, Biking & Legendary Knife-making
    Monday’s brand new EA episode will take you mountain biking along beautiful De Gray Lake near Arkadelphia, going back in time at Historic Washington and taking in the gorgeous views along Yellow Rock Trail at Devil’s Den State Park. Get the details about our July 1 episode after the jump!
  • Chuck’s Blog – November “Exploring Arkansas”
    A couple of rides from the past and one from the 21st century are in store with visits to Fort Smith, Fayetteville's Drake Field and Wooly Hollow State Park during the next brand new episode of “Exploring Arkansas” airing Monday, Nov. 3 at 6:30 p.m.
  • Autumn In Arkansas
    From all indications, autumn in Arkansas this year should be a good one.  All the ingredients thus far are there -- crisp, cool nights and warm, sunny days which are allowing leaves to do their thing.  Yes, to do their thing. If you want a more scientific explanation of leaves changing color..you'll have to go elsewhere.  Sorry, I'm not a botanist or scientist -- I only explore Arkansas.  One of the best ways to experience Arkansas's autumn splendor is by taking one of the many designated scenic drives throughout the state.
  • Chuck's Blog - "Exploring Arkansas Special Edition: Underground Wonders of Arkansas"
    In this special edition of “Exploring Arkansas,” we’ll take you on a wild caving adventure to some of our most memorable caverns throughout the state. You’ll see formations beyond imagination and fascinating, creepy creatures, which can only be found in caves. So, let us do the crawling through cave mud for you as we bring you the underground wonders of Arkansas in our brand new December episode!
  • Natural State Wildflower Byways
    Now that spring has sprung -- and will be blossoming into all its glory...I need to tell you about the Highway Department Wildflower program. Yes, their job never ends you know -- in February they had to clear all the ice and snow...and now they have to plant wildflowers of all things !  Ahh, but it's well-worth it !  Crimson and clover....crimson and clover.....oops !  Sorry, daydreamed off their for a sec. Anyway...yes, this is about the coolest thing the Highway Department has come up with in awhile, other than those info signs that you see as well --and the orange barrels -- can never have enough of those.
  • My Favorite Winter Getaways
    Now that the snow is finally flying in the air and is sticking to the ground in some areas...it's time to venture out to one of the Natural State's magnificent winter weekend getaways.  Here are a few of my favorites while Exploring Arkansas.
  • Meet Me In The Park - continues
    Just a note of "thanks" to all who were able to make it on August 29 to the Buffalo National River at Tyler Bend Visitor Center for AETN's Meet Me In The Park events.
  • Exploring AR's National Parks
    "Exploring Arkansas's National Parks" -- airing 4pm September 27.  DVD's of the program will be available. Speaking of National Parks  -- in case you haven't heard, you can explore your parks this summer during AETN's Meet Me In The Park events, which I'll be be attending several down the road.
  • Falcon Bottoms Natural Area
    Just want to thank everyone who came out to the Rotary meeting in Magnolia on Thursday the 18th before we headed out on Dorcheat Bayou in the Falcon Bottoms for a segment we did there that will air on Labor Day, September 7th at 6:30pm.
  • Dorcheat Bottoms
    Big turnout in Shirley last Saturday during their homecoming parade and the Lucky Ducky Regatta !  Thank you all for those who attended! Magnolia is next on tap for June 18th. First, at noon we'll partake of all the good eats at Millers Cafeteria and then I'll be speaking to the Rotary Club there.
  • Shirley, Arkansas visit
    Hi there friends and viewers !  Welcome to my first blog on AETN ! Wonderful time coming up this Saturday June 6th as I pay a visit to one of my favorite Arkansas towns -- Shirley !! SALUTE !!  As they used to say on Hee Haw!

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