HOT SPRINGS NATIONAL PARK, Arkansas — “Duck Dynasty’s” Mountain Man will be the official starter for the First Ever 11th Annual World’s Shortest St. Patrick’s Day Parade next March 17 on world-famous Bridge Street in downtown Hot Springs.
“We thought it would be a nice touch to have a guy be the official starter who talks so slowly that the parade could be over by the time he tells the crowd his name,” said Steve Arrison, CEO of Visit Hot Springs. “Mountain Man fits the bill perfectly.”
The world-famous parade’s entire route consists of the 98-foot length of Bridge Street, the world’s shortest street in everyday use.
Actor/comedian Jim Belushi will be the parade’s grand marshal, the latest in a series of celebrities that includes Bo Derek, John Corbett, Tim Matheson, George Wendt, Mike Rowe and others.
“’Duck Dynasty’ is enjoying unprecedented popularity,” Arrison said, “and Mountain Man will have hundreds of fans on hand to see him in the parade.”
Mountain Man’s real name has never been included in any of his “Duck Dynasty” episodes.
He is the slow-talking air-conditioning repairman/radio host who is a neighbor to the Robertsons, the Louisiana family that made a fortune from its best-selling Duck Commander duck calls, and around which the show is based. Mountain Man is the only semi-regular cast member who is not a Robertson family member or employee of Duck Commander.
“Duck Dynasty’s” August 14, 2013, Season 4 premiere had 1.8 million viewers — the largest audience ever for a nonfiction cable series. It is cable’s top reality program this year, and the No. 2 original series overall.
While he was born in Louisiana, Mountain Man moved around a bit in his youth, spending time in Minnesota, Tennessee and Indiana. But the lure of the Bayou State was too strong, and he returned to Louisiana, which has been his home for the last 25 years. He lives in Monroe, La., the small town made famous by “Duck Dynasty” and the Duck Commander duck calls.
His weekly radio show on Monroe station Z107.5 has become popular all over the globe, with people tuning in, via the Internet, to hear Mountain Man’s delightful mix of common sense, sports, music – and usually a Bible verse or two.
To know Mountain Man is to know a man whose Christian faith is a big part of who he is. “Life’s not easy, but I have God in my life and it’s so much better. So much better,” he has said.
This faith, as well as his recent celebrity, is now allowing him the opportunity to reach out to people who need inspiration: “I love being able to actually go to schools and give speeches about bullying, drugs, and abstinence. It makes my soul feel good,” he said.
Mountain Man is also an avid outdoorsman, enjoying both fresh- and salt-water fishing, as well as hunting for everything from wild boar to, well, ducks, of course.
“I’ve never been a person to judge, or to hold grudges. I don’t hate anybody, and I don’t even have the ability to do so. I’ve always tried to treat others like I would like to be treated,” he said.”I’m just a country boy…a redneck sticking to my roots.”
For more information call Steve Arrison at 501-321-2027.