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LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) - When you stand here at the river and soak it all in, you can easily get distracted. First by the smells--the food is overwhelming—the barbecue, the kettle corn, the funnel cakes the fajitas. You name it! We can get distracted by the people—all shapes and sizes, moods and dispositions, makes and models, and all endlessly fascinating.

For most everyone here, the music is the main destination. Standing in the middle of the midway, it can beckon you from every corner of the festival, but the one true star in all this is the river. It is why we're here. No, literally! It's why we're here.

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Native Americans came here, followed by French and English explorers, then commerce made it here, and then people—through feast and famine, wars and peace, from the steamboat to the ski barge, telegraph to hashtag.

Whether the river is up or down, frozen or shallow, it has always been here connecting every Riverfest and connecting us all—the beautiful, unpredictable, glorious, natural Arkansas River.

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