August 2012

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August 2012

publisher’s column ™

Vol. 3 No. 4 August 2012

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Ann Gray

Graphic Designer:

Emilie Gorman

Contributing Editors: Derek Dague Tiffany Hellerstedt Renee Oelschlaeger

Contributing Photographers:

Keith Branch, Arturo, David Bell, J.P. Bell

Account Executives: Warren Adcock

Kimberly Fielding Winters

Community Outreach Representative: Russ Anzalone

Contributing Writers:

Marilyn H. Collins, Amy Giezentanner, Bethany Stephens, Linda Moea’i, Donna Hamilton

Contributing Guest Writers Dr. J.E. Block, David Bell, Alison Taylor Brown

Welcome to the August 2012 issue and the very first monthly magazine for 2NJoy! Our first bimonthly issue went into distribution on December 4, 2009. Due to the economic woes nationwide, we chose a very cautious approach to our new venture. However, in the last year we have had amazing growth along with overwhelming response from our readers and advertisers. We sincerely thank you all for your support and encouragement. No one has worked as hard, nor has anyone worked more unselfishly and honestly, than Carolyn Joyce of the Fort Smith Convention and Visitors Bureau. Her dedication, tenacity and love for the State of Arkansas is recognized in the tourism industry nationwide. Carolyn celebrates her 20th year promoting the history and story of Fort Smith. She truly has earned the title “First Lady of Tourism.” This article is one you will not want to miss, along with Marilyn Collins’s entertaining, historical account of the State’s second largest city. Arkansas’s very own Yarnell’s Ice Cream is back home and now on your favorite grocers’ shelves. Beth Stephens shares with us their deeply committed journey from their beginning in 1932 through today’s efforts to rebuild this Arkansas legend. In this issue, we would like to introduce two new sections we hope you will enjoy. The 2NJoy Supper Club will give you a glimpse of some of NW Arkansas’s wonderful dining establishments, their owners, chefs and maybe even some of their clientele. Also, the Writer’s Colony at Dairy Hollow will be joining us with inspiring short stories on the last page of each issue. Alison Taylor Brown will urge you to join the community writers’ program and tell your own story. We thank you, our readers, for your suggestions and input. Our advertisers also appreciate hearing your comments when you visit. We are excited to be a part of your lives on a more frequent basis, and there is no denying that you continue to influence ours and fill our pages with great stories. See you next month. May God Bless, Ann But whoever has this world’s goods, and sees his brother in need and shuts up his heart from him, how does the love of God abide in him? 1 John 3:17

The contents contained herein may not be copied or reproduced in any manner without the written permission of the publisher. Products and services advertised in the magazine are not necessarily endorsed by 2Njoy, Inc. Views expressed herein are those of the authors and advertisers and do not necessarily reflect the opinion of this magazine. 2Njoy, Inc. All Rights Reserved.


August 2012


featured contributors

Amy Giezentanner

Marilyn H. Collins

Bethany Stephens

Amy Giezentanner is a lifelong learner and lover of all things beautiful. She spends as much time as she can on stage, writing, playing with animals, cooking and baking, and reading. She loves to travel and dance, and thinks spending time with family and friends is the best way to spend a day.

Marilyn H. Collins is an award-winning author of nonfiction books and over 100 magazine articles and newspaper features. Collins is author of a new ebook series. She is a frequent conference speaker and workshop leader. Collins is currently owner of CHS Publishing.

Bethany Stephens cites Death by Chocolate as her favorite Yarnell’s flavor. She is fond of just about anything made in Arkansas, including her husband Fred and daughters Sophie and Ainsley. Beth has worked in tourism, economic development and now serves as a marketing consultant for two firms.

Contributors: Marilyn H. Collins, Amy Giezentanner, Bethany Stephens, Linda Moea’i, Donna Hamilton Guest Contributors: David Bell, Dr. J.E. Block , Alison Taylor Brown GCFS 2NJoy Catering Ad_Layout 1 7/17/12 12:00 PM Page 1

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When it comes to catering, if you can dream it, then we can do it. In the River Valley or Northwest Arkansas, we can cater sit down dining affairs for up to 1,000. For weddings, family reunions, business functions, casual BBQ’s – whatever your need, we can develop a menu and help you plan to impress or simply feed the team. Call our catering contacts Debra Presson or Mike Watts at 479- 484-1040.

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August 2012

content 06

02 Publisher’s Column 04 Contributors 05 Content Page


06 Thorncrown Chapel Lighting the Way for 32 Years 10 Fort Smith Theatre On With the Show!


12 Dr. Block Turning Back Time 14 Yarnell’s Ice Cream We are Scream, “Welcome Back!” 19 Recipes What’s in the Mix 20 Cellar Creekside Savory Surprises from the Cellar


24 Miss Laura Cheers for 20 Years! 30 Fort Smith Feature History and the Arts Await 38 The Write of Way Intro to Dairy Hollow 40 Fayetteville Farmers’ Market Sampling the Pulse of the Community

VOTED THE “BEST OF THE BEST” 8 YEARS RUNNING 1120 S. Walton Blvd. Bentonville (located 5 min. from Walmart Home Office)

48 The Writer’s Colony Everyone Has a Story to Tell

Correction: Making Memories Tours website is


On the Cover: Carolyn Joyce as Miss Laura of the Fort Smith Visitor Center


Photo courtesy: Doug Reed


August 2012

A Light Shines Through: 32 Years of Thorncrown Chapel by David Bell


resting a hill high in the Ozarks is Thorncrown Chapel, where for 32 years pilgrims of faith and beauty alike have f locked daily. Whether they come by the bus load or visit in pairs, this gorgeous wood and glass chapel always seems filled with a presence. Celebrating 32 years of service, this chapel still has such a powerful effect on those that visit. Whether it is the grandeur of the architecture or the power of prayer, this majestic place of worship continues to inspire awe and reverence.

“Over the years I’ve seen how this place can have a profound effect on people,” said Doug Reed, pastor at Thorncrown and son of Jim and Dell Reed, who built the chapel. “We’ve had [everyone from] Hells Angels to Amish visit Thorncrown.” Whether it’s from the knowledge that it’s a sacred place dedicated to the Lord, the sheer beauty of the building and surroundings or a combination of both, Thorncrown Chapel is recognized by pilgrims as a place deserving of reverence and respect.

Photo courtesy: Doug Reed


Why is it that this masterpiece of architecture should command such respect? “There is a connection between the environment and the building’s design... they’re blended together perfectly,” Reed said. Some folks walk in and sit with their heads bowed in quiet contemplation; others look at the architecture in appreciation of how it seems to be an organic part of the environment surrounding it. All are moved in one way or another by their encounter with Thorncrown. “Several Hells Angels came once and were afraid to go in,” Reed said. “We talked to them and [assured them] that they were welcome there.” Thorncrown Chapel is the dream of a retired school teacher, the late Jim Reed, and was brought to reality by renowned architect E. Fay Jones. Since 1980 over 6 million visitors have been touched by this very simple place nestled on a mountainside in the Ozarks. Would Mr. Reed be surprised by the millions of people who have been touched by Thorncrown? “Fay Jones and Dad were worried people would never see the chapel,” Reed relates. Fay once even told Mr. Reed, “Too bad no one will ever see it.” But they were amazed by the large numbers of visitors and the bonding these people experienced with Thorncrown, Reed said. “They [Dad and Fay] would sometimes come and sit there for hours and watch people have a worship experience.”


August 2012

Photo courtesy: David Bell

Aaron’s Custom Landscaping Arbors & Waterfalls Landscaping Creative Pathways Stonework Retaining Walls Customized Patios & Decks Personally designed landscape drawings


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The Rich Tradition of Community Theater... Everyone plays a Part by Amy Giezentanner


ommunity theaters are famous for their longstanding tradition of volunteerism. It takes passion, vision, and dedication, to keep these theaters going. With the area’s rich and colorful history, it is no wonder the Fort Smith Little Theatre is Arkansas’ longest standing, and continuously operating, group of passionate theater volunteers. Now nestled firmly in a historic neighborhood at 401 North 6th Street, Fort Smith, AR 72901 (479) 783-2966, the Fort Smith Little Theatre took root in 1947 when the Young Ladies’ Guild of Sparks Memorial Hospital sponsored a theater production as a fundraiser. There wasn’t a home for it at the time, but the event was a success and the group flourished. By 1952, 10

August 2012

they were able to buy an old grocery store to call home. They renovated it into a theater-in-the-round, with the capacity to hold an audience of 150. After sixty-some years later, countless productions, and another building, the theater now stands as a treasure that gives back to the community that brought it to life. Each year, the all-volunteer operation serves about 9,000 children and adults through a variety of programs ranging from musicals and plays, to classical Shakespeare, and other off-season shows, which give new directors the experience they need. Also, it sponsors a children’s theater workshop for residents of Ragon Homes, collaborates with five organizations on their fundraisers, and provides free dress rehearsals for about 700 students and elderly

residents. They garner so much community support that they operate in the black–a testament to the symbiotic relationship the theater and town of Fort Smith enjoy. Recently, I met with Angela Covey, the theater’s warm and enthusiastic president, to take a tour of the facility and to “get the scoop.” The current building was completed in 1986, and was expanded six years ago to better accommodate the needs of a busy community theater; so busy in fact, that they are renovating once again to extend the lobby and to allow easier access to the sound and light booth. Volunteers will no longer have to climb a ladder to reach it--an excellent thing, given that they range in age from children to retirees. Volunteering at a community theater is not all about the acting,

although running such a tight ship Ozarks, located at 214 South Main requires talents that run the gamut Street in Springdale, Arkansas, got from fundraising, set-building, its start more than 40 years ago, cleaning, and ticket selling, to and is home to both performing directing, acting, costume design, and visual arts. It, too, relies on a and strategic planning. There is even network of volunteers, and it sports a 50-member board whose members an array of classes for children and rotate out of service every three years. adults year-round; e.g., painting, I was able to meet Wayne Matthews, acting, writing, directing, and even who was cleaning the lobby to prepare cooking. New classes rotate each for the expansion; and Lora Rice, semester and during the summer, so, who “manned” the ticket office if you don’t see something you like that night. They both are regular this time, you can always check again volunteers--and just like the cast who in a few months. Call them at (479) was there to rehearse, the show could 751-5441, or drop a note at www. not “go on” without these dedicated and ask to people to support every aspect of the be put on the mailing list for audition theater’s operation. notices, volunteer opportunities, and The Theater’s board makes class mailings. it very easy for local residents to get The Village Players, in Bella involved, no matter their talents. Vista, Arkansas, celebrate thirty years Auditions for upcoming productions of shows this year, with performances are advertised on of “Godspell” and the web and in “Philadelphia Story.” the newspaper. Check them out at www. It takes passion, (You can follow for vision, and them on their details, or call them at dedication, to keep website at www. (479) 876-1481. these theaters going.; and Rogers’ Little Theater “Like” them starts its 27th season on Facebook, this year. Located in the or “Follow” them on Twitter. You “Victory Theater” at 116 South 2nd can even sign up for their email list Street in Rogers, Arkansas, 72756, it through the “Contact Us” link on the is another prolific community theater webpage.) With an upcoming season that thrives on volunteer involvement. that includes “Hallelujah Girls,” It offers up a dinner theater at plays “Little Women,” and more, there will and musicals, workshops for children, be plenty of volunteer chances for a and a 2nd stage for additional variety of volunteer talents in Fort productions. Check them out at www. Smith., or call them at Do you love the theatre (479) 631-8988. and want to be involved? Northwest There are so many wonderful Arkansas has several community theaters in the Northwest Arkansas theaters that would not exist without area that would love to have new the love and support of their participants. Tap into your inner volunteers. Here are a few more: artist, or volunteer--get involved with The Arts Center of the one today!

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The Clock-Like Body by Dr. J.E. Block


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August 2012

ith my patients, I often compare the aging process to a clock. We are born with just so many tick-tocks embedded in our genes or given to us by our Creator. As we get older, the clock winds down as all clocks wind down eventually—even a nuclear one. But just like the spring-loaded clocks made in the last 400 years, we should work perfectly until the last several minutes, falter slightly—and then stop. We should have 100 years of prime living before the clock strikes “Old Age”. To continue the analogy of the clock, starting at age twenty, when we reach adulthood, we cannot and should not turn the hands on the clock backward, although it can be slowed with knowledge of proper bionutrition. In the last 100 years, our life expectancy from birth has increased thirty-five years, but the maximum human lifespan has not changed much. Decreased infant mortality, better hygiene and vaccines account for 85 percent of the improvement; medical technology with antibiotics and sophisticated surgery accounts for only 15 percent. But caloric restriction without malnutrition slows aging and increases lifespan in both lower forms of animals and humans. Aging is primary and secondary. Primary aging is the progressive deterioration of our structure and function due to the natural shortening of the cell nuclear telomere (the

segment of DNA that occurs at the ends of chromosomes). Secondary aging is due to degenerative diseases such as cardiovascular (blood vessels), cancer, infection (immune system), and diabetes (metabolism). The more one eats, the more oxidative products are generated by the breakdown of food, particularly low nutritious carbohydrates. This result causes chronic inflammation and metabolite alteration with the accumulation of injurious chemicals. Inexpensive Metformin (oral treatment of type II Diabetes) has been shown to encourage weight loss, as well as to prevent and even help treat some cancers. The downside is that it depletes the body’s B12, which should be supplemented. Lower body weight causes a slight decrease in body temperature and raises DHEA, both of which are associated with less disease. Of

interest, rats that maintain low body fat by regular vigorous exercise in a running wheel did not increase their lifespan like their sedentary mates who were just food restricted. In humans, the Atkins Diet did better, paradoxically, than a program of Lifestyle, Exercise, Attitude, Relationship, and Nutrition (LEARN), per a recent JAMA article. Easily accessible biomarkers, such as fasting plasma blood sugar, low density lipoprotein and blood pressure, as well as more sophisticated studies like left ventricular diastolic function, adrenaline metabolites and insulin sensitivity were markedly improved in calorie-restricted people. Studies of European World War II survivors showed marked decrease of coronary artery disease, which increased after the war and the return of adequate nutrition. Okinawans, with the largest number of centenarians in the world, eat 30 percent less than the average relatively long-lived Japanese residing elsewhere, and they have a 35 percent lower incidence of heart and cancer mortality. Although a caloric restriction is recommended, it is hard to follow. A pill would be better. Metformin, 2-Deoxyglucose and Resveratrol decrease serum glucose,

insulin, heart rate blood pressure and adrenaline. Even intermittent fasting is better than nothing for life extension. The downside of caloric restriction is osteoporosis, anemia, muscle wasting, depression and irritability. A moderate reduction of calories, a fair amount of exercise and decreased psychological stress will go a long way in allowing you to go a long way.



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For more information see our website or call 479-876-1877


Yarnell’s Ice Cream: The Sweetest Comeback by Bethany Stephens


n 1932, Mr. Ray Yarnell purchased a bankrupt ice-cream company in Arkansas. The aftershocks of the stock market crash three years prior began to weave throughout the southwest, but somehow he kept the business afloat during the Great Depression. This feat was no small miracle given that sugar was one of the first staples to be rationed in the 1940s. The family-owned ice cream company experienced growth in the 1950s, and it began moving outside Arkansas and producing private label goods for other companies in the 1980s. However, in June 2011 seemingly insurmountable challenges forced the Searcy, Arkansas-based company to shutter. But it should come to no surprise that a company formed in the shadow of the most widespread economic downturn of the 20th century and the haze of World War II learns to turn trials and tribulations into nothing more than notches in its belt. Happily, Yarnell’s Ice Cream Company is back on the shelves at retailers all over the state, and every indicator points toward Arkansans enjoying the brand for eighty more years. In fact, Mr. Albert Yarnell (now 88) stops in at the plant regularly to make absolutely certain the company is still fulfilling its top priority: making great ice cream. Described as a true Southern gentleman with a sharp mind, Albert was just a boy when his father acquired the company, and he endured growing pains alongside it. Mitch Evans, now Vice President of Sales, began his career with Yarnell’s twenty-eight years ago driving a delivery route. He is deeply committed to the company, and he speaks with pride about efforts to rebuild the Arkansas legend. Chicago-based Schulze & Burch Biscuit Company acquired the company in January and turned around nothing short of a miracle in getting the facilities revamped and ice cream on the shelves by April. The S&B team had faith in the Yarnell’s product and its people, and with good reason: Evans tells of the way so many team members, 14

August 2012

The new owners of Yarnell’s found an old vintage milk delivery truck that they refurbished and branded as the truck that Scoop, Yarnell’s new “mascot,” takes around to community events.


Above: Employees from 1934 pose in front of the Yarnell’s ice cream plany in Searcy. Left: A look at the Yarnell’s plant back in the day.

Right: A vintage photo of a local Arkansas baseball team sponsored by Yarnell’s.


August 2012

Kevin Boyle, CEO of Schulze & Burch Bisquit, which bought Yarnell’s in November 2011, shares the first carton of the “new” Yarnell’s off the line with former owner and namesake, Albert Yarnell.

Mountain View on a hot July day. He went to the truck to grateful for the chance to reclaim jobs with the company, get an order for a store and saw a pretty little girl of five mounted an all-hands-on-deck approach to bringing it back or six years old who asked him sweetly for an ice cream to life. “I helped in production one day because they were sandwich, something the drivers often keep handy for just short-handed, and I asked a guy who normally worked in such an instance. He turned around to get it for her, and the freezer section what he was going to do that day.” The when he turned back the little girl had reply: “Whatever they need me seemingly multiplied instantly into ten to do.” Today, Yarnell’s is back eager children! For Evans, that’s what to producing its seventeen basic “I’ve never handed anyone makes returning to his job so welcome. flavors of ice cream, frozen yogurt a sample or a scoop of ice “I’ve never handed anyone a sample or and its Guilt-Free line. Many of cream and not gotten a a scoop of ice cream and not gotten a the flavors have an Arkansas twist, smile in return.” smile in return.” such as Homemade Strawberry, Ozark Black Walnut and Blueberries ‘n Cream. “Our target is the Arkansas market – we want to get it right here before we do anything else,” says Evans. The Yarnell’s plant manager, Alex Bell, is incredibly focused on the product and adamant about making great ice cream. In fact, the production team has made a few improvements for the company’s second wind; there are more inclusions than ever, according to Evans. To the layperson, “inclusions” mean the good stuff: larger homemade strawberries and more pecans, peaches and blueberries. In turn, the people of Arkansas have been amazing in terms of the reception to the return of “their” brand. A team member named Marcus making deliveries in south Arkansas during the first weeks of the Yarnell’s return reported back: “I’m just feeling the love!” Evans tells of running a route in the early days and being in

There are more smiles in store; just around the time this magazine lands in your hands, Yarnell’s ice cream sandwiches will be returning to Arkansas stores. There are chocolate and vanilla wafer varieties, and they were the number one ice cream novelty item in both Arkansas and Mississippi when they last sold from the shelves in 2011. Americans love to find a product made in their own backyard and show their loyalty to it. Evans says that Arkansans have said they’re glad Yarnell’s is back with words, but they’ve shown it with their enthusiastic purchases. He says the team just wants to say thank you to the people of Arkansas for standing by Yarnell’s. “You’re the reason we’re back.” For more history on Yarnell’s as well as a list of all the ingredients that go into making each of the company’s flavors of “down home goodness,” visit




ne constant with the human experience is that food brings people together. In spite of the modern tendency to ever speed onward, there is a time when we must slow down and make time for food, family and fellowship. The 2NJOY Supper Club is our way to not only offer a taste of cuisine that you might have missed on your daily commute, but also to introduce you to the folks in the kitchen that truly make the dining experience great. Monthly we will give you a glimpse of the ambience of some of the best dining places you’ve never tried, and we will speak to the planners, chefs and food lovers that have been there first hand. The menu is ready and the table is set; all that is missing is for you and yours to come, sit and NJOY.

2043 E. Van Buren Eureka Springs, AR 72632


Wedding Cakes, Special Order Cakes, Cupcakes, Cookies, Pastries, Scones, Cheesecakes, Breads, and more! (Sugar Free and Gluten Free Available Daily) Coffee, Fresh Brewed and Flavored Teas, Fresh Squeezed Lemonade

Hours: Seasonal: Tues.-Sat. 7:30am-6:00pm Sun.-Mon. 7:30am-2:00pm FREE PARKING! see The Celler at Creekside on page 20


August 2012

Recipes by Linda Moea’i

Simply Delicious Spinach Strawberry Salad This is simply the best, easiest, and most beautiful salad I’ve ever eaten…so refreshing! 1 package organic baby spinach, washed and sorted 1 pint strawberries, stemmed and cut into ¼ wedges 1 small can Mandarin oranges, drained Now here is the fun part! You can add or subtract any ingredients as you like! Suggestions: feta cheese, slivered almonds, Chinese noodles, sun flower seeds, blackberries, blueberries, chopped Italian cucumbers, chopped green, red, and orange bell peppers… the garden is the limit! Dressing: Brianna’s Home Style Blush Wine Vinaigrette or Brianna’s Home Style Poppy Seed dressing… Delicious and all natural ingredients! Enjoy!

Grilled Lemon Chicken Kabobs 2 lbs. chicken breasts (best if pounded evenly for an equal cooking time and cut into 1 ½ inch pieces). In a small bowl, mix the following ingredients for your meat marinade (marinade overnight). * Retain about ½ cup for basting the kabobs while they cook. ¼ cup light soy sauce 3 Tbs. white wine vinegar 2 Tbs. brown sugar – or Stevia to taste ½ tsp. garlic powder ½ tsp. seasoning salt ½ tsp. lemon pepper seasoning 4 oz. fresh-squeezed lemon *Pre-soak wooden skewers in warm water for 3-4 hours to keep them from burning. Chop veggies alternating meat and veggies of your choice on skewers. (Suggestions: bell peppers strips, fresh mushrooms, cherry tomatoes, fresh pineapple.) Lightly oil grill grates and cook kabobs for about 10-15 minutes, or until it has reached your desired doneness.




August 2012


by Amy Giezentanner


unning a successful restaurant is more art than science. It’s an art that requires diligence, talent and stamina. Some restaurants have all those things but still don’t make it – not for lack of good food, but because they lack that special “something” that sets them apart from the restaurants that get it right. It’s hard to define that “something” until you see it in action, and then you know it instantly: hospitality - lots and lots and lots of good ol’ fashioned hospitality. All other things being equal, people will go out of their way for the place that makes them feel welcome. The theme song to Cheers summed it up well: “Sometimes you wanna go where everybody knows your name, and they’re always glad you came.” There’s a place just like that in the small, out-of-the-way town of Sulphur Springs, population 709. It’s the kind of town most people drive through on the way to somewhere else, not a place they go to for the sake of being there. At least not until The Cellar Creekside came along, and now foodies from all over Northwest Arkansas drive to eat there. Deb and Bill Murphy, owners of The Cellar Creekside, have turned their hidden gem of a bistro into a true destination restaurant. Tucked into the back of the park down a dirt road in Sulphur Springs, you’d never know it was there unless someone told you where to look. And if you missed it, you’d miss great food and a charming, intimate atmosphere set against the backdrop of true hospitality. My first trip to The Cellar was for a monthly Supper Club dinner with friends. We normally convene at one of our homes, but our fearless leaders felt

it was important to introduce us to the place. So we went and sat at the bar – perhaps the most unique in Northwest Arkansas – where we were served via the model train that runs the length of the counter. That also meant we could see a tiny bit into the kitchen and talk to Bill about the magic he creates in there. It’s delicious magic, the food he makes. I’ve been back three times and haven’t been disappointed yet. But what amazes me most about his passion for food and Deb’s passion for service is that they both had full-time careers when they opened the restaurant. They each worked 40 hours a week outside the restaurant before arriving for their Friday-Saturday service, and they somehow found the energy to come back for more. They’ve been so good at what they do that Deb finally gave up her other career to devote her energies to The Cellar Creekside. It seems apparent when you meet her that this move was an act of natural selection. She excels. She knows her wines. She knows her service. She knows her customers. She acknowledges each by name and with natural warmth that she and Bill both possess. It’s enough to make you come back for more. Perhaps it’s because they have that passion for hospitality. Perhaps it’s because they have true culinary talent. Or maybe it’s the cute little restaurant design. Whatever it is that brings people back, it’s worth the 2-hour round trip to be lavished on the way only Deb and Bill know how.

134 Wood Ave. Sulphur Springs, AR 72768 479-298-0009


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August 2012

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by Marilyn H. Collins


August 2012


n the raucous Wild West days of the late 1800s and early 1900s, Fort Smith offered everything a person needed for entertainment, often accommodating bandits like James Dalton, Belle Starr, and Cherokee Bill. After their deeds of violence, bandits could easily cross the Arkansas River and escape into Indian Territory. But while in town, “The Row” of bawdy houses offered frivolity and a place to spend ill-gotten gains. Miss Laura’s Social Club was the most elegant of the houses and catered to the more affluent customers. On a good Saturday night, champagne was iced down in a bathtub upstairs and shared with the guests. Miss Laura’s “girls” were well trained—never seen on the first floor unless fully clothed. Rather than permitting the girls to walk the streets and shop, merchants brought goods to the house for them to purchase. However, once a month Miss Laura took her girls to the theater. They sat in the balcony as targets for hostile stares from wives seated below; I imagine many men slouched down and stayed face forward in their seats. By 1910, public opinion and a freak fire closed most of the houses on “The Row.” Miss Laura’s house was unharmed, but that eventful night resulted in a “lingerie parade” of girls and embarrassed customers fleeing the burning inferno; it only added to the colorful saga of the Social Club. Other disasters came later to the building after Miss Laura’s time: the 1943 flood, the 1963 wrecking ball, and the 1996 tornado that ripped the roof from the building. Five and one-half inches of rain drenched the interior. The building was shifted to a new foundation, one building wide as required by the National Register. Carolyn Joyce entered the

story in 1992 when the Fort Smith Visitor’s Bureau opened at 2 North B Street—formerly Miss Laura’s. After restoration funds were earlier provided by Donald W. Reynolds, founder of Donrey Media Group, Carolyn was asked to help set up the offices for the center. Accepting the challenge, she envisioned a much larger role for the space and decided to keep Miss Laura’s story alive as something enticing for visitors to enjoy. “All I needed was a costume and an attitude,” said Carolyn. Sparkling with energy and a zest for life, her marketing genius is well known in Fort Smith and throughout national tourism circles. Realizing that Fort Smith needed an added “oomph” to bring the motor coach trade off the Interstate and in the city overnight, she created the persona of the historic Miss Laura and her Social Club in 1992 to keep this part of the city’s history alive. Claiming the honor of being the first ever bordello placed on the National Register of Historic Places and still retaining the flair and some furnishings of its former life, her idea for the site has been a smashing success. After the tornado and flooding in 1996, Carolyn chose softer and warmer colors for the wall paper and other appointments for further restoration. When motor coach visitors arrive, Carolyn welcomes them at the door dressed as Miss Laura. She leads them through the restored bordello, still furnished much as it would have been on its busiest evening. Pointing out names of the girls painted on the transoms above bedroom doors, she weaves a delightful story of the early days on the frontier. One special treat is the room devoted to a display

Owen and Lily

Henry Award Hall of Fame 2011

Miss Laura welcomes tour groups to the Visitor Center


of Miss Laura’s costumes, complete with hats and jewelry and to help keep the group overnight in the city. “The created just for her. Carolyn’s husband T. Bob (see sidebar) Medicine Show on Hangin’ Day” is a musical comedy was a strong supporter and loved her playing the role of exaggerating the public draw that Judge Parker’s hangings Miss Laura. He provided over $30,000 for her costumes over had on the area. Back then people would come by wagon the years leading to the celebration of her 20th Anniversary from miles around to see the hanging, often bringing their as Miss Laura in 2012. Costumes are professionally made dinner with them. In the play, Miss Laura brings two or and true to the period. Carolyn explained the process of three girls to the public gathering and entertains along creating her ensemble: with a Huckster hawking his “Les Johnson makes elixir assured to cure most any “The media and people touring the all the costumes ailment a body might have. area love the idea of Miss Laura and have without a pattern. She The crowd joins in singing spread the word throughout the first starts by bringing “Red Garters,” “Mississippi industry,” said Carolyn. material swatches to Mud,” and “Swing Low, me in various colors. I Sweet Chariot.” For larger choose ones that I like and tell her the kind of dress I want. groups, performances may be in a hotel or restaurant; Les then sketches the outfit.” Leftover scraps from the dress smaller groups enjoy the play in the dining room at Miss are then sent to the Milliner Cathy Burk in Bakersfield, Laura’s. “The media and people touring the area love the California. Cathy is well-known for hats she created idea of Miss Laura and have spread the word throughout for actress Jane Seymour of Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman the industry,” said Carolyn. She also spends time traveling television fame. The final piece is jewelry made by Jolene around the country promoting the history and story of Fort Wiltsie in Davie, Florida. Miss Laura’s latest attire is then Smith. “We live history every day,” said Carolyn. complete. Carolyn’s entire family joins in the tourism fun. Carolyn next created and developed “Miss Laura’s Her grandchildren even dress in western costume to help Players” for the chartered bus groups as entertainment promote the Fort Smith rodeo and similar events. Carolyn Joyce


photo by Arturo


August 2012

grew up with four brothers; she was well prepared for her outgoing role. Born on a cotton and rice farm in Brinkley, Arkansas, she developed strong family values and a strong work ethic from her parents. Her ability and creative drive awarded her induction into the Arkansas Tourism Hall of Fame in 2010. Accolades that day included the comment, “Carolyn has always taught us that when it comes to visitors, ‘perfect will be just fine.’” Mayor Sandy Sanders spoke highly of her. “Carolyn for her entire career has done a marvelous job making visitors to Fort Smith feel special. I’m looking forward to many, many more years of her involvement in the tourism industry. She is a special lady.” Claude Legris, Director of Fort Smith Convention and Visitors Bureau said, “Carolyn has helped the staff quickly realize that we have the absolutely best jobs in the world - tourism. We get paid for helping other people have a good time.” Volunteers play a vital role in keeping Miss Laura part of the growing tourism effort of the city. “We couldn’t handle the leisure travel without their help,” said Carolyn. Over 70 volunteers including seven or eight charter members who’ve been here from the beginning provide house tours. One volunteer charter member even drives from Gravette to Fort Smith. “Miss Laura’s story has not changed from 1903 to today. She stays here,” said Carolyn. Although times have changed, “Miss Laura has always taught us that ‘it’s a business doin’ pleasure with ya!’”

In Tribute

T. Bob Joyce March 30, 1935 – May 6, 2012

T. Bob and Carolyn Joyce would have celebrated their 37th

anniversary on June 28 of this year. Carolyn smiles through tears as she tells how her husband always wanted her to enjoy what she did. With every new idea, his response was “Go for it.”

T. Bob supported her long hours, travel, and amazing role as

Miss Laura. Carolyn always saw her role as an opportunity of a lifetime, never a job. Busy with his own business, T. Bob managed multi-national corporations on a senior level. He retired in 2001 as President of J.L.S. Enterprises, a financial holding company. He had a strong work ethic and demanded as much from himself as people who worked with him.

Family came first for T. Bob. He always made each family

member’s birthday cake from scratch and was an involved father to her two children. They lived in a home built on land where T. Bob was born and lived his last 40 years with Carolyn. He was also a romantic man. They kept several traditions each year on their anniversary. Their cake had the same colors as the original wedding cake. They lit the same memory candle and each year shared champagne aged from the year before.

“I was always a little girl skipping along with no cares in the

world. He was the rock that I held in my hand. I’m not yet sure how to skip again without my rock,” said Carolyn. “But I know that his strength and love will continue to sustain me.”

Family members shared their thoughts in the tribute written about


him including: It was not as much about the house he built with his own hands on his family homestead as rocking on the

709 Garrison Ave. Fort Smith, AR, 72901

front porch with his wife and children. 31

FORT SMITH Who Knew History Could Be Such Fun? by Marilyn H. Collins


August 2012


eenagers in your family won’t have the chance to roll their eyes—and neither will anyone else—when visiting Fort Smith, Arkansas. The personification of the old Wild West and early American history, this big city has plenty of sights to keep them occupied. Who can resist the stories behind buildings such as Miss Laura’s Bordello (today’s Visitor Center), Judge Parker’s jail and gallows, the newly erected statue of U.S. Marshal Bass Reeves, the Trolley Museum, and much more? History is on every corner!

Energy and enthusiasm pervades the State’s second largest city, with a yearning for life in Fort Smith from 1842 to today’s busy world of 2012. Mayor Sandy Sanders enters into the frontier spirit on occasion by playing the role of Rooster Cogburn of True Grit movie fame. The release of the new Coen brothers’ movie portraying the famous Judge Parker’s jail and gallows brought out over 500 “Rooster Cogburns”—each complete with eye patch. Fort Smith has had the recent distinction of being selected over several cities, including Washington, DC; Nashville, Tennessee; St. Louis, Missouri; and Laramie, Wyoming, to be home of the newly planned U.S. Marshals’ Museum. I saw the architectural drawing of the museum for the first time in Mayor Sanders’s office, and I truly gasped at the beauty this art form will create on the banks of the Arkansas River. Although still in its fund-raising phase, anticipation is high for this project. In keeping with the “marshal” theme, a fleet of law enforcement officers escorted the statue of U.S.


Photo courtesy: J.P. Bell


August 2012

Deputy Marshal Bass Reeves, astride his horse with his trusty dog at his side, from the Oklahoma studio of artist Harold T. Holden across the Arkansas River to Fort Smith in May. Deputy Marshal Reeves was the first African-American to serve as Deputy U.S. Marshal West of the Mississippi River and the first to ride for Judge Parker. A skilled rifleman, as well as ambidextrous with a pistol, he brought in over 3,000 felons while serving for 32 years in Oklahoma (then Indian Territory). Although he spoke several American Indian languages, he could not read; thus, he memorized court warrants read to him by others. Close by his statue are the Fort Smith Historical Museum and the Fort Smith National Historic Site, both revealing glimpses into early Western frontier history, as well as that of the city itself.

“There is a romanticism about these early days. The whole epic of the ‘hanging judge’ and the stories of outlaws in Indian Territory fascinate people of all ages,” said Michael Groomer, Chief of Interpretation for the National Historic Site. “But it’s not all about nooses and gunpowder,” he continues. The early chapters of the city also include the traumatic “Indian Removal” [SIC] called the Trail of Tears, which led to the need for the first and second forts during this period. Antique tools, an 1862 Bronze Napoleon cannon, a 1908 American steam-pumper-fire engine and a period timeline add to the core exhibit of the historical “Fort Smith was the museum, presenting the jumping off place for day-to-day lives of early folks going West— people beginning with rushing for gold and the Native American land, and just going,” Indians and continuing said Carolyn Joyce. up to today’s modern city dwellers. Much of old Fort Smith appears in oil on canvas by John Belle, Jr., found in galleries and businesses around town. Visitors to the city begin their quest at Miss Laura’s Visitor Center (2 North B Street) adjacent to the future site of the U.S. Marshals’ Museum. Holding the distinction of

being the first bordello listed on The National Register of Historic Places, Miss Laura’s offers a tour of this restored Victorian mansion—the last of seven 1900s houses on “The Row.” “Fort Smith was the jumping off place for folks going West—rushing for gold and land, and just going,” said Carolyn Joyce, Administrative Coordinator of the Visitors’ Center. Joyce has greeted visitors in costume as Miss Laura since the Center opened in 1992. “I was even inducted into the Arkansas Tourism Hall of Fame!” she exclaimed. Another exuberant cheerleader for the city and its stories is the Convention and Visitors’ Bureau’s Executive Director, Claude Legris. “You can’t spit out a window in this town without hitting history!” he exclaims. Legris went on to indicate Fort Smith as a draw for visitors because of its strategic location on the Arkansas River. History shows, as well as tells, a fun and economical place for families to vacation. The new slogan

is, “The New Spirit of the Old West”. The Fort Smith Symphony, Fort Smith Chorale, various festivals throughout the year and live entertainment in local establishments mix with great retail and restaurants. Add the abundance of friendly people to the mix for a welcoming environment to visitors all year long. “We are becoming well known for great music. I think our local talent could be some of the best anywhere!” said Jayne Hughes, Downtown Coordinator. The retail story includes fourth-generation owners like Kelly Newton of Newton’s Jewelers (701 Garrison Street). As part of this family legacy, he learned to set diamonds at the age of ten. “People favor us when they come through our doors,” said Newton. “We specialize in perfectly cut diamonds.” “All of our staff hold professional designations and are here to help customers find just the right piece of jewelry or gift—we don’t hard sell,” he mentions. Newer businesses like Garrison Avenue Antiques (709 Garrison Avenue) and Belle Starr Antiques (21 North 4th) add new flavor and fun to shopping. Downtown shops offer clothing, shoes, gallery prints, western wear, music, flowers, tattoos, antiques, and more. Restaurants are plentiful in downtown Fort Smith.


Shops on Garrison Avenue

Young Cogburns

Belle Grove Historic District

Trolly on Garrison Avenue


August 2012

Garrison Avenue offers several places to relax over a meal: “Rolando’s” specialty is Pesaro de Mesias (Tilapia with tequila and caper sauce); “Sacred Grounds” serves great coffee and sandwiches; “Creative Kitchen,” with their own muffin baker, is chocked full of fun and useful kitchen gadgets; and the “Garrison Point Market and Café” recently opened. You’ll find live music and great fajitas at “La Huerta Grill” near the Fort Smith National Historic Site. Sample these and other fine restaurants when in town. Take time to enjoy fine Italian dining in the beautifully appointed “Taliano’s” Italian Restaurant, located in the restored 1887 Sparks Mansion (201 North 14th Street) where James Cadelli, partner with Tom Caldarera, Jr., readily showed his love for his work. “The only reason for our business is the customer,” said James. They prepare food on site, offering customer favorites while creating new dishes to delight their guests. Maintaining the integrity of the architecture throughout the city is a high priority. Plans for exterior changes to both buildings and homes in designated areas are subject to review, keeping the beauty and history intact. Among these special areas is the oldest residential neighborhood in Fort Smith—the “Belle Grove Historic District” featuring a 22-square-block area showcasing styles including French Colonial, Federalist, Colonial Revival, Italianate, Second Empire, Carpenter Gothic, Folk Victorian, Queen Anne, Eastern Stick, Eastlake, Richardsonian Romanesque, Romanesque, Classical Revival, American Foursquare, Craftsman, and Mission—all built over a 150-year period. Fort Smith doesn’t just rely on its history to encourage visitors to their city. The newly expanded Convention

Center welcomes groups to enjoy its 1,331-seat theater, 40,000 sq. ft. exhibit space with 145,000 sq. ft. of total meeting area. The adjacent Holiday Inn-Fort Smith City Center on Rogers Avenue “boasts a verdant atrium lobby and a spectacular five-story waterfall,” said General Manager Barbara Israel. “The hotel is located in the heart of the downtown entertainment district and is a great place for a romantic getaway or to schedule business meetings.” Future attractions to the city include a Fort Smith Regional Art Museum, a Fort Smith Aquatic Center (recently approved for Ben Geren Park), and as previously mentioned, the world class U.S. Marshals’ Museum and the newly erected U.S. Marshal Bass Reeves statue. “Basically we have preserved our history and kept the story going,” said Downtown Coordinator Jayne Hughes. “We are fun, we have great living space and attractive pedestrian areas—friendly and safe.

Our downtown slogan, ‘Live, Work, Play,’ has been successful.”

Sandy Sanders, Mayor of Fort Smith

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Intro to Dairy Hollow THE WRITE OF WAY

by Marilyn H. Collins


he vision of a writing space where even your Muse will behave is the legacy that Ned Shank and Crescent Dragonwagon turned into reality. Their B&B/restaurant in Eureka Springs, Arkansas, became “The Writers’ Colony at Dairy Hollow”—a retreat intentionally designed as a refuge for creative people to think and work undisturbed. Just think about those works of fiction, nonfiction, or poetry you’ve been planning to write if only you had the time and space to create. No daily routine, appointments, cell phone, or to-do list to pull you away from the computer. “When I’m at the colony, I’m with kindred spirits. I feel an incredible sense of time, place, self and energy,” said Kim McCully-Mobley a self-proclaimed writer, teacher, storyteller, historian, gypsy, rebel, and cowgirl. “I am truly myself and my memories are anchored there.” Another alumnus, Joe Cangelosi is planning his ninth consecutive year at the colony. He comes for “more than just writing.” He feels that he grows “not only intellectually, but also spiritually, emotionally, and physically.” When taking a break, he finds “Eureka Springs an enchanting place. Downtown is where I meet and talk with people, eat, and listen to music. I feel better about myself when I’m in Eureka Springs.” Programs are not only for writers, but also for artists, musicians, architects, and culinary specialists. Each individual seeks the colony as a place to hone his or her craft. Dairy Hollow is the only colony that recognizes 38

August 2012

culinary arts as a legitimate writing genre and provides a state-of-the-art gourmet test kitchen for their creations. What could be better for residents? Dinner is prepared five nights a week by Jana, the Colony’s chef. the culinary arts folks. A fully-stocked kitchen also offers a fix-your-own breakfast, lunch, or a midnight raid of the refrigerator. Creative time is “fiercely protected” but, knowing writers, they also crave time to talk about what else—their writing. They can share frustrations as well as successes. A perfect time to encourage camaraderie is after a dinner you didn’t fix. Residents often gather and share their stories. Three residential suites are available in the original Dairy Hollow Colony facility. An exciting new space has just opened in the adjacent 505 Spring Street gifted by Marty and Elise Roenigk that offers five more suites with full private baths, writing area with wifi, multiple decks, and conference area. Architects may especially enjoy this Frank Lloyd-Wright inspired, mid-century classic design. Wright coined the phrase “Usonian,” an architectural design simplified to control costs and provide affordable housing. Joe Cangelosi was the first writer to stay in the newly renovated 505 Spring Street. “That was a real privilege. It was a great experience and I was unusually productive.” Sharing with the community was an important part of Ned and Crescent’s overall plan. Both those who apply for Fellowships or a General Residency share a small portion of their talent and time to lead workshops, sign their books, or participate in a project tailored to their talent. “All participants are encouraged to give back to the community,”

said Board President Sandy Martin. “One such collaborative relationship is in support of “Books in Bloom,” a well-known writers/readers event held each May in Eureka Springs.” 2Njoy Magazine joins in sharing the creative work by residents of The Writers’ Colony at Dairy Hollow. “I’m excited to offer the last page of each issue to feature various aspects of their work,” said Publisher Ann Gray.

Since the colony opened in the year 2000, 850 established and emerging writers from 44 states and 11 countries have worked on their projects in this setting of creative energy. For costs and additional information, contact The Writers’ Colony at Dairy Hollow, 515 Spring Street, Eureka Springs, AR 72632:,, or call 479-253-7444.




August 2012

photos courtesy of Fayetteville Farmers’ Market


aybe it’s the scent of fresh daylilies that you notice first, as it draws you through the sea of men, women and children to the downtown Fayetteville square. Or perhaps it’s the sight of a multitude of fresh, colorful vegetables – the rich deep purple eggplants, the bright red of freshly picked tomatoes or the forest green, yellow and ruby bell peppers. Your eyes are definitely bigger than your stomach, and you find yourself pulling out your wallet at stall after stall as you anticipate baking, roasting, boiling or broiling the inviting treats you’ll prepare that evening. The vendors are friendly and offer their knowledge freely, sharing preparation tips to bring out the flavors of their produce. But it’s not just produce or flowers; you’ll find a little bit of everything “folksy” at the market. The market is alive with street performers, from local musicians to jugglers to mimes. At times the music is soft and lilting as a trio of young girls lifts their voices for

your enjoyment. On another corner, you may find frenzied bluegrass banjoes and guitars filling the air. On especially sunny days you might even indulge in a chair massage from a therapist like local professional Rex Roberts, who lends his skill at chair massages while he enjoys a little people watching on the square. In fact, with the coffee and baked good vendors abounding, he’s not the only one doing the people watching. Fresh coffee and a bagel or Danish is available to complement the morning’s activity. Children play in the waterfall, climbing the rocks carefully to avoid a sudden spill. The Animal Shelter dogs circle the square, leashed and wearing little dog blankets identifying their availability of adoption to passersby. More than 60 vendors line the square and the walkway to the Town Center building, and many non-profit organizations set up shop there to share their purposes and messages with the town folk and tourists. It is election year, and you’ll be able to visit with your current and future elected officials at the


square, the meeting place for minds as well as stomachs! You may encounter a solicitor or two asking for your signature on a proposed addition to the ballot. Friendly is the definitive word here for those seeking your vote or your tangible support, and somehow it all fits together for a unique experience. If you’re a gardener, you may already have your own mini-market in your back yard, but you’ll find some unexpected or unusual plants to add to your own after visiting several of the vendors. Even cheese, lamb, pork, and honey can be purchased from local farmers. With the huge assortment and readily available fast food in our region, it’s sometimes easy to forget the concept of fresh food. Head to Fayetteville on any Tuesday, Thursday or Saturday morning from April to November, and you’ll find a wealth of freshness. Fayetteville’s Farmers’ Market has been voted #5 in the nation, and it’s never a disappointing experience. The market is open from 7:00 am to 2:00 pm on Saturdays and 7:00 am to 1:00 pm on Tuesdays and Thursdays, and it’s a refreshing trip that reminds us that the simpler things in life still taste sweet.

LOCAL AREA MARKETS Bentonville Farmers’ Market, Downtown Square Saturdays, 7 – 1. April - October 30th. Fayetteville Farmers’ Market , Downtown Square Saturdays, 7 - 2. April - November. Fayetteville Farmers’ Market at the Mill Thursday evenings, The Mill District Fayetteville Farmers’ Market Botanical Garden of the Ozarks Sundays April - November. Eureka Springs Farmers Market Tues –Thurs 7- Noon. April-November. Pine Mountain Village, Eureka Springs Gravette Farmers’ Market Sat, 9 to 1. May- September. 110 Park Dr in Old Town Park. Madison County Farmers’ Market, Huntsville Square Tues and Sat, 7- Noon. May - October Rogers’ Farmers’ Market Downtown Rogers. Wed and Sat, 7 – 1. Mon 4 -7 . May - November Springdale Farmers’ Market Jones Center for Families Tues, Thurs, and Sat, 7 - 1. May - October. Shiloh Square Downtown Springdale, Sat 7 – 1. Mon 4 -7. West Fork Farmers’ Market Sat 7 - Noon. April - 1st frost. Wed and Mon. through Sept.


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The Writers’ Colony at Dairy Hollow provides creative residencies with uninterrupted time for writers of all genres including culinary, composers, and artists. More than 850 writers from 44 states and 11 countries have created at the Colony since its founding in 2000.

by Alison Taylor Brown


o write as a celebration of our own rare and eccentric personhood, our own frailty and beauty, is to light our individual candle and hold it up. This year, I attended the American Association of Writers held in Chicago. So did almost 10,000 other people. The majority of these writers dream of writing an important book that makes a bestseller list. The lines for writing fame are long. Writers feel overwhelmed by the odds against winning recognition, when so many are in the race. Overwhelmed by competition for readers, when there 48

August 2012

is so little reading time. Rather than a celebration of the joy of writing, the conference reminded us of these grim realities. But this totally misses the point, just as no two zebras are alike, no two writers are alike. Each individual is a combination of his traits and traumas, history and hopes, pain and passion. Through writing, we celebrate our uniqueness, and through our uniqueness, the universal. A well-known writer says that if a depressed person on a subway reads about another depressed person riding a subway, he becomes a little less depressed. He sees that he is not alone, not singled out for misery. Through writing, we examine our pain, but we also see it as a part of the universal pain. We unearth our own hope, a fragment of

mankind’s hope. And hope is the fuel for, not only continuing this life’s journey, but actually enjoying it. So if you want to write, do it. Jump into the river of creativity and splash around playfully. It’s true that there are a lot of us in here. But the river is wide. Don’t you want to tell your story? For more information contact: alison@writerscolonyorg or 479 292-3665.









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August 2012