Jacob Slaton

Johnathan and McKenzie enjoy spending most of their time at Argenta shops, Downtown bars and locally-owned restaurants.

Moved From: Alexandria, Louisiana | Neighborhood: Argenta/North Little Rock

Not many 20-year-olds think of Central Arkansas as a region to relocate to post-college graduation – but Johnathan and McKenzie Cleghorn are big advocates for young adults to give the Metro a try. While their friends and acquaintances moved to big cities like Dallas, Denver and Nashville, the Cleghorns planted roots in North Little Rock’s Argenta neighborhood and have never looked back.

"Before I moved here, I honestly had no idea how beautiful the nature was. The views are to die for, especially in the fall. The weather is crisp and the colorful trees on our rolling mountains are stunning."

Johnathan moved to Central Arkansas in 2021 after landing a job at the Dillard’s corporate office and quickly fell in love with the friendly community and vibrant nightlife. McKenzie would often visit Johnathan while finishing up her senior year at John Brown University and was constantly surprised by the natural beauty all across the state.

“We moved from Siloam Springs in northwest Arkansas,” McKenzie said. “We love Northwest Arkansas [and] think it’s so cute, but we weren’t expecting to like Little Rock even more than booming Walmart country.”

The high school sweethearts tied the knot at The Anthony Chapel in Hot Springs (a 50-minute drive from Little Rock) and settled down in their first home on Main Street in Argenta in 2022. McKenzie accepted a job at Agency GWL as a graphic designer and Johnathan later joined the company as a digital strategist. During their free time, the newlyweds can be found running at Two Rivers Trail, playing pickleball with friends, or kayaking the Arkansas River. 

“We pass the Big Dam Bridge on our way to work every day, and it gives me so much serotonin,” McKenzie said.

They adore Arkansas’ daytime outdoor activities, but the couple truly fell in love with the city after discovering its electric nightlife. McKenzie can be found at Brood & Barley or Rocktown Distillery with her girlfriends while Johnathan’s been visiting Little Rock since he was a teenager to attend hardcore concerts with his friends and explore the city. Now, he’s back and playing bass in his own band, Death Rattle. 

“We’ve really tried to stay true to Little Rock’s hardcore [scene] by taking inspiration from those before us like Terminal Nation, Second Life and Morbid Visionz,” Johnathan said. “The scene has grown so much since my first show here back in 2021.”

The two can be spotted with their close friends at trivia nights hosted by Flyway Brewing or grabbing a drink at the many bars Argenta has to offer. They frequent Arkansas Museum of Fine Arts, Rocktown Distillery and events in the Argenta neighborhood. 

“The nightlife here is perfect. It’s big enough that you get to change things up when you want to, but small enough to where you can still feel like a regular,” Johnathan said. “There are shows for every type of music enjoyer and events that anyone would love. If you’re looking for a cool spot for shows in Conway, definitely hit up Full Moon Records.”



Beloved Local Businesses: David’s Burgers; Four Quarter Bar; White Water Tavern; Bang-Up Betty

Favorite NLR Attraction: “The Trolley,” McKenzie said. “It’s free, [it offers an] amazing view of the river and the drivers are so nice. Sometimes, the drivers will even give you a history of the city while you ride. It’s a great option if you hate parking Downtown or if you don’t want to deal with driving after a night out.”