November 2019

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DEMACEO WHITTIER Athlete Orthopaedic Patient High School Student Volunteer HOSPITALS • CLINICS • SPECIALISTS We are friends, neighbors and caregivers. Together, we share a common bond. We love our community and those who make it what it is. November 2019 | 3


501 LIFE

OWNERS Donna Spears, Sonja J. Keith OFFICE MANAGER Tracey Wilkinson EDITOR Sonja J. Keith


ART DIRECTORS Jennifer Godwin and Nick Walker ASSOCIATE EDITOR Levi Gilbert PHOTO DIRECTOR Mike Kemp

DISTRIBUTION MANAGER Tom Keith CONTRIBUTORS Donna Benton Don Bingham Kellie Bishop Adam Bledsoe Tanner Cangelosi Brittany Gilbert Laurie Green Linda Henderson Vivian Hogue Karl Lenser Mark McDonald Mark Oliver

Kiera Oluokun Todd Owens Bill Patterson John Patton Susan Peterson Dr. Robert Reising Robin Richards Jan Spann Donna Lampkin Stephens Callie Sterling Jaison Sterling Megan Stroud


Wreaths are lined up, ready for volunteers to place them last year at Little Rock National Cemetery. (Sonja J. Keith photo)

A season of thanksgiving This year has flown by, and it’s that time again – the season of thanksgiving. Many of us are blessed beyond measure, but sometimes we let the busyness of life get in the way of an attitude of gratitude. Instead of focusing on the positive, it’s all too easy to dwell on the negative. It helps to take a moment to breathe and think about all of those things for which we can be thankful. With Veterans Day happening just a couple of weeks before Thanksgiving, it’s only natural that we would reflect and give thanks for the many men and women who have served our country as well as those in the military today. We appreciate their willingness to serve and are grateful not only in November, but throughout the year. There’s a special event coming up at 11 a.m. Saturday, Dec. 14, that we would like to encourage everyone in the 501 to support – Wreaths Across America Day 2019. The mission of Wreaths Across America is to remember the fallen, honor those who served and teach our children the value of freedom. It is carried out in part by coordinating wreath-laying ceremonies on a specified Saturday in December at Arlington National Cemetery, as well as veterans cemeteries and other locations in all 50 states and beyond. Last year, my family and I had an opportunity to attend and participate in placing a wreath at a headstone. We paused for a moment and said the name of the service member who was buried at each spot. We didn’t know the veterans we honored, their personal stories or the sacrifices they made, but that didn’t matter. What a honor to remember each and thank each one. This year, Little Rock National Cemetery needs 22,000 wreaths in order to honor every veteran and more wreath sponsors (individuals, businesses and groups) are needed. The year’s theme is “Everyone Plays a Part” and we join organizers in asking for the community’s help to ensure that no veteran headstone is left empty. To sponsor a wreath ($15) or for more information, go to Information is also available on the Arkansas Run for the Fallen page on Facebook. Yes, it’s a busy time of year with more events and activities packed into October and November than I can remember, but if a little time allows, attend one of the Veterans Day celebrations in the 501. And given an opportunity, whether in November or any other time, thank a veteran for his or her service. In addition to family and friends, I am thankful we live in such a beautiful area with amazing people. I’m also deeply appreciative of those involved in 501 LIFE – from our advertisers and editorial board members to our incredible team of contributors. The magazine has been such a blessing in my life, and I hope in the lives of others. Until next month, here’s to “Loving LIFE” in the 501.

Johnny Adams Jack Bell Don Bingham RaeLynn Callaway Glenn Crockett Kay Dalton Beth Franks Russ Hancock Spencer Hawks Mathilda Hatfield Roe Henderson Jerry Hiegel Mike Kemp

Julie LaRue Karl Lenser Lori Melton Kiera Oluokun Deanna Ott Pat Otto Jon Patrom Amy Reed Lori Ross Margaret Smith Jan Spann Kim Tyler Jennifer Whitehead

CONWAY COUNTY EDITORIAL BOARD Mary Clark Shelli Crowell Dr. Larry Davis Shawn Halbrook Alicia Hugen Alisha Koonce

Stephanie Lipsmeyer Stewart Nelson Kristi Strain Jim Taylor Morgan Zimmerman

WHITE COUNTY EDITORIAL BOARD Betsy Bailey Tara Cathey Cassandra Feltrop Phil Hays Natalie Horton Matt LaForce

Hannah Owens Mike Parsons Brooke Pryor Carol Spears Kristi Thurmon

To subscribe or order back issues, visit The subscription rate is $20 for one year (12 issues). 501 Advertising and Publishing 701 Chestnut St. Conway, Ark. 72032 501.327.1501 501 LIFE is published monthly by 501 Advertising and Publishing (701 Chestnut St., Conway, Ark. 72032, 501.327.1501). The contents of 501 LIFE are copyrighted and materials presented may not be copied or reproduced in any manner without the written permission of the publishers. Articles should not be considered specific advice, as individual circumstances vary. Products and services advertised are not necessarily endorsed by 501 LIFE. 501 LIFE is produced on recycled paper.

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November 2019

Volume 12 Issue 7

features&departments 40 Feature


This year’s Dazzle Daze will have a new look and feature some major changes.

44 Faith

On the cover

The historic neighborhoods in Conway are always ablaze with fall color. JJ Robinson, son of Jacob and Samantha Robinson, pulls a wagon of fresh pumpkins beneath a brilliant yellow ginkgo tree. (Donna Benton photo)

Dr. Mark Cooper has seen firsthand through his missionary work and nonprofit organization Chicks for Children Foundation that “it takes a village.”

52 Entertaining

With Thanksgiving and Christmas around the corner, it’s time for baking and trimming trees, and enjoying the truly important things in life.

66 Business

An estimated 200 people recently attended the grand opening of the Crow Group’s newly renovated corporate headquarters in Downtown Morrilton.

72 Sports


Faulkner County’s premiere football rivalry ignites again this November as Greenbrier and Vilonia vie for the First Service Cup.

neighbors 24 Couples

Maret and Jeff Wicks are loving life in the 501, where they both will be helping with the United Way’s Turkey Trot planned on Thanksgiving Day.


26 Youth


Nabiha Khetani has been a writer since before she knew what that meant.

28 Maumelle

Flying has been a part of Billy Mitchell’s life for 80 years.

4 8-9 10-17 52-58 82


82 Person of the month

The South Conway County School District recently recognized former principal Henry Turner for his service. This edition of 501 LIFE includes a feature story on this year’s Dazzle Daze co-chairmen MissE Newton and Shelia Isby and plans for this year’s event (Page 40-42), as well as a Dazzle Daze special insert. 501 LIFE is proud to serve again this year as a Presenting Sponsor for Dazzle Daze, which is presented by the Conway Regional Women’s Council.

LIFE pics 18-21

'501 KIDS' 501 LIFE contributors Kellie Bishop and Brittany Gilbert have great tips in the 501 Kids section (Pages 62-64). Have a story idea or a young person you would like to see featured? Send suggestions to info@501lifemag. com.

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Editor’s Note Calendar Loving LIFE Home Person of the month

501 LIFE would like to thank its advertising partners for their continued support and encourage our readers to support these businesses:

501 LIFE is you! /501lifemag

A Arkansas Dental Centers, 29 Arkansas Dermatology, 43

B /501lifemag

Bledsoe Chiropractic, 39

C Central Arkansas Pediatrics, 63 Conway Corporation, 19 Conway Downtown, 23 Conway Regional Dazzle Daze, 61 Conway Regional Health System, 83 Conway Regional Rehab, 65 Conway Symphony Orchestra, 57 Crow Construction, 67

D DJM Orthodontics, 73 Double Springs Grass Farms, 58

E E. L. Clinical Esthetics, 49 Edward Jones, 54

Get “LIFE” at home! For a limited time, 501 LIFE is offering a special subscription rate for new subscribers - have the magazine delivered to your home for only $20 for one year, $40 for two years. While the magazine is distributed through more than 700 locations in Central Arkansas, copies go fast. Home delivery ensures readers they won’t miss a single issue. Readers can visit or call 501.327.1501 to subscribe.

Tune in at 12:30 p.m. the last Tuesday of each month to KARK Channel 4 for a segment on the current issue of 501 LIFE.

F First Security Bank, 84 First Service Bank, 13 Freyaldenhoven Heating and Cooling Inc., 51

Writers’ Room

H Hartman Animal Hospital, 81 Harwood, Ott & Fisher, PA, 33 Heritage Living Center, 5 Hiegel Supply, 58

M MSC Eye Associates, 31 Methodist Family Health, 42

O Ott Insurance, 45

P Patterson Eye Care, 57

S Salem Place Nursing and Rehab, 25 Searcy Small Business Revolution, 37 Shelter Insurance, 60 Sissy’s Log Cabin, 35 St. Joseph Schools, 64 Superior Nursing & Rehab, 2

T The Bridgeway Hospital, 75

U UCA Reynolds Performance Hall, 59 Unity Health, 3 University of Arkansas Community College Morrilton, 27 University of Central Arkansas, 53

W Wilkinson’s Mall, 31

Vivian Lawson Hogue is among the rare “native” segment of pre-mid-20th century Conway residents still living where she was born in 1943. A graduate of Conway High School, Vivian attended Hendrix College for two years and graduated from the University of Central Arkansas with a bachelor of science in education degree in art education. Vivian writes a regular column for 501 LIFE, oftentimes with an historical perspective. “Writing just slipped into my life by a happy accident.” To contact Vivian, email vhogue@

Recognized throughout the state as an accomplished chef, Don Bingham has called the 501 his home for 47 years. “I enjoy most the people of the 501 – their heart and passion for life and for each other.” A graduate of Dallas Theological Seminary, Don has a bachelor’s degree in communications and is a certified chef. He and his wife, Nancy, have five married children and 12 grandchildren. His interests include music, interior design and event planning. He serves as the board chairman for Renewal Ranch and is a worship pastor. He can be reached at Dwain Hebda is a writer, editor and journalist living in Little Rock. The president of Ya!Mule Wordsmiths, he’s covered a wide range of subject matter over the course of his 40 years of professional writing that includes magazines, newspapers and books. When he’s not bringing the tales of Arkansas and her people to the page, Hebda and his wife spend their energy on their four grown children and three lovely dogs. November 2019 | 7


Straight No Chaser, a Best of Reynolds event sponsored by 501 LIFE, will perform at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 7, at the Reynolds Performance Hall at the University of Central Arkansas. The group performed at Reynolds (pictured) in 2014. For more information and to purchase tickets, visit

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Several events are planned in November at the Reynolds Performance Hall at the University of Central Arkansas: Straight No Chaser, 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 7, presented by 501 LIFE “The Color Purple,” 7:30 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 10, presented by KOKY 102.1 “Boston Brass – Christmas Bells are Swingin’!” 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 21, presented by UCA’s College of Fine Arts and Communication For more information and to purchase tickets, visit uca. edu/Reynolds. The Community Action Program for Central Arkansas will host the “Change the World” Challenge throughout the month of November. Participants are asked to collect change during the month as part of a series of activities to raise awareness about 8 | 501 LIFE November 2019

the homeless. Sponsors are also being sought for Project Homeless Connect planned Thursday, Jan. 23. For more information, call 501.269.9351, or visit or projecthomelessconnect.arkansas. Pioneer Village, in its 51st year, will celebrate its Annual Fall Fest from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 2, and noon to 4 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 3. Activities specifically for children include pioneer games, milking a cow, and farm animals. There will be food, live music, kettle corn, fresh roasted peanuts, dancing, pioneer life demonstrations, antique tractors and crafters. Village buildings will be open for touring. Admission and parking are free. Donations accepted. All proceeds benefit the maintenance, upkeep and improvement of the Village, which is part of the White County Historical Society. For more information, please call 501.580.6633 or 501.278.5010. The University of Central Arkansas will host its Annual Veterans Day Celebration from 1 to 3 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 7, in the McCastlain Hall ballroom. The event will help raise money for an endowment scholarship fund to create an annual veteran student scholarship program. The theme is “Honor our Homefront,” which will pay tribute to the families of service members who have been deployed. For more information, contact David Williams at veteranservices@uca. edu or 501.852.2999. The UA Community College at Morrilton SkillsUSA chapter will host the 13th Annual UACCM Pageant on Saturday, Nov. 9. The pageant will begin at

10 a.m. in the Fine Arts Auditorium on the UACCM campus. The public is invited. Admission to the pageant is $3. Children under age 4 get in free. For more information, call Linda Zambrano at 501.977.2061. Preregistration deadline is Monday, Oct. 28. The final deadline to register is by 4 p.m. Monday, Nov. 4. ComiConway, presented by the Faulkner County Library, will be held Friday, Nov. 15, through Sunday, Nov. 17. It will feature more than 100 pop culture vendors, top writers and artist guests and panels, cosplay contests for all ages, kids’ activities and a game room. Events on Nov. 15 include a cosplay contest at the Faulkner County Library, at 1900 Tyler St. in Conway. It is free and open to the public. Events on Nov. 16 and Nov. 17 will be held at the Conway Expo Center and Fairgrounds, l2505 East Oak St., and will include cosplay contests, vendors, panel discussions, displays and a game room. Admission tickets are $25 for a VIP pass, which includes a commemorative 2019 ComiConway T-shirt, swag bag and early admission privileges. A weekend pass is $5, with $3 for Sunday only admission. Visit for event and ticket information.

To submit a calendar item, please send information to To see a complete list of items, please go to

Time to think about adult vaccines


As the 501 gets ready this fall for another cold and flu season, it is a good time to think about which vaccines are recommended. The three main vaccines recommended for adults are flu, pneumonia and shingles.


Andy Dallas Andy Dallas, PharmD, is a pharmacist at Baker Drug Store in Downtown Conway.

Flu shots are recommended for everyone over the age of 6 months who does not have an allergy or other contraindication. Most insurances cover flu shots for no copay including Medicare Part B. There are many new options in flu shots, including ones for people with egg allergies and for ages 65 and older, so talk to a health care professional about which one is best for you.


There are two pneumonia vaccines available for adults, Prevnar 13 and Pneumovax 23. It is recommended for all adults over the age of 65 to get one dose of each vaccine at least one year apart, with Prevnar being the first. If you received a dose of either vaccine before you turned 65, you should get revaccinated after you turn 65. Pneumonia vaccines are covered by Medicare Part B for no copay. For adults from 18 to 65 years old, a pneumonia vaccine is recommended if you have any chronic health condition such as diabetes, heart disease, lung disease and other disorders. Most insurances cover pneumonia vaccines for no copay as part of a wellness program.

SHINGLES Shingles is a painful rash that can flare up if you had chickenpox as a child. The Herpes Zoster virus lays dormant and can come back as shingles. You cannot catch shingles from someone with an active rash, but you could get chickenpox if you were never exposed or vaccinated against it. Studies show that more than 99 percent of adults over 40 had chickenpox even if they don’t remember having it. The main complication from shingles is postherpetic neuralgia which is pain that can last after the rash is gone due to nerve damage from the disease. There are two shingles vaccines available for adults over 50. Zostavax was launched in 2006 and is indicated for prevention of shingles in adults 60 and older. It is a live attenuated vaccine that is about 51 percent effective

at preventing shingles and 67 percent effective in preventing post herpetic neuralgia. Since it is a live vaccine it is contraindicated for people with a weakened immune system or on medications that suppress the immune system. In 2018, Shingrix was released and was immediately the preferred of the two options. Shingrix is not a live vaccine, so there are less restrictions on who can receive it. It is more than 90 percent effective at preventing shingles and is recommended for all adults ages 50 and older, including those who had previously received a dose of Zostavax. Shingrix is a two-dose series with the second dose coming two to six months after the first. Most private insurances cover Shingrix for no copay, but for people on Medicare it is covered through part D or your drug plan. This means all of the copays, deductibles and coverage gaps apply and cost can range anywhere from $30 to $170 per dose unless you qualify for lower copays. Due to unanticipated demand there were immediate shortages of the vaccine and now Glaxo has it on allocation where you can only order 10 doses at a time. If you want to get Shingrix in the near future, check around or get on a waiting list because it will be in short supply for the time being.

Conway orchestra plans Nov. 3 concert The Conway Symphony Orchestra, with music director and conductor Israel Getzov, will present “Echoes of Desire,” its first season concert in Reynolds Performance Hall at 4 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 3. The concert will feature staples of the orchestral repertoire.

Guest conductor Isaac Terceros will lead the orchestra in Giuseppe Verdi’s Overture from La Forza del Destino and Lorraine Duso-Kitts will be the featured soloist for Mozart’s Oboe Concerto in C Major. Included in the concert is Beethoven’s Symphony No. 6 which will conclude the Conway Symphony Orchestra’s seasons long Beethoven cycle under the tenure of music director Israel Getzov. “For an orchestra to

say that they have performed all nine Beethoven symphonies is a testament to the talent within the orchestra and the dedicated community members who have stood beside them throughout the years,” he said. Echoes of Desire is sponsored by Centennial Bank. For more information and to order tickets, visit

La Fiesta Orquesta on Nov. 1 The Conway School District’s Orchestra Program will host its annual La Fiesta Orquesta fundraiser from 5 to 8 p.m. Friday, Nov. 1, at Conway High School. The event features a taco supper and silent auction, which begins at 5:30 p.m. The meal will be served in the school cafeteria.

Tickets will be available at the door and are $10 for adults and $5 for children under 12. Orchestra members will perform throughout the evening in Buzz Bolding Arena, where the silent auction will be held: 6 p.m. – Citywide seventh-graders.

6:30 p.m. – Conway High School and chamber orchestra 7:30 p.m. – Citywide sixth-graders. 8 p.m. – Conway Junior High School For more information, visit the Conway Public Schools Orchestra page on Facebook. November 2019 | 9


Sharing the 501 LIFE spirit

501 readers are enjoying LIFE and sharing their trips and special occasions with others. An overwhelming number of readers are submitting “Loving LIFE� photos for inclusion in the magazine, and every effort is being made to publish them as soon as possible. Headed out on a special trip? Pack a copy of 501 LIFE in your suitcase, snap a photo at your destination and send it to us for publication in a future issue. Have a special occasion or get-together coming up? Take 501 LIFE along, take a photo and send it to us. Photos can be submitted by email to or by mail to Reader Photos, c/o 501 LIFE, 701 Chestnut St., Conway, Ark. 72032. Please include the names of those in the photograph and their hometowns along with contact information. (Sorry, photos will not be returned by mail but can be picked up at the 501 office.) Here’s to “Loving LIFE.� – Sonja Keith

‘Loving LIFE’ and Greenbrier’s sister city Members of the Greenbrier community recently gathered at the high school for a special group photo presented to sister city Greenbrier, Tenn. Mayor Sammy Joe Hartwick and his wife, Cheryl, traveled to Tennessee and met with the mayor of Greenbrier there and other city leaders. “We started this project in July as a way to reach out to another city similar to ours and share the great community spirit that we have in Greenbrier,� said Dustin Chapman, president of the Greenbrier Chamber of Commerce. “The City of Greenbrier, Tenn., was obviously a perfect fit for this project. After we reached out to them about the idea, the fun ideas just kept growing from there. The pictures we took on the football field were such a great way to capture the exciting energy and community spirit that we have here, and we were excited to share it with our sister city in Greenbrier Tenn.�

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The Children’s Advocacy Alliance Team was “Loving LIFE” as members celebrated partners and community at the 2019 Appreciation Luncheon.

Betty Jackson was “Loving LIFE” after retiring with 20 years of service at Conway County Regional Water. She was honored with a meal with employees, family and friends.

Guy-Perkins Elementary School first-graders took 501 LIFE along to the Arkansas Frontier pumpkin patch.

Faulkner County Library Tai Chi students were “Loving LIFE” while celebrating World Tai Chi and Qigong Day at Pulaski Heights United Methodist Church. Arthritis and diabetes organizations worldwide support Tai Chi to improve well-being and quality of life. Participating were Carmen Prowse (front, from left), Mei Chu, Ileina Ferrier (Master Trainer), Sachiko Halter, Xiao Fang, Janet Lane; Carol Clark (back), Lynn McClure, Paul Guerin and Harold Booher.

Shania Cogdill took 501 LIFE along to Governor’s School at Arkansas Tech University.

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Line dancers from both the basic and intermediate classes taught by Libby Wren Rannenberg at the Ola and John Hawks Senior Wellness and Activity Center took 501 LIFE along to a luncheon at Starlight Ridge Retreat Center owned by Katherine Friday (front). Katherine was the event hostess and Sharron Johnson assisted. Those attending: Katherine Friday (from left), Sharron Johnson, instructor Libby Wren Rannenberg, Donna Bivens, Joyce Moore, Mary Ann Matthews, Donna Holt, Linda Taylor, Jackie Howe, Carla Humphreys, Marie Richardson, Argie Davis, Sandy Brink, Wanda Strong, Sue Spradlin, Susan Usko, Denise Thomas and Bert Lackey. Not shown: Sandy Brooks and center director Debra Robinson.

Nemo Vista students and teachers were “Loving LIFE� as they celebrated Dr. Seuss Day on Feb. 28. Brooke Adams, Lindsey Ketchum and Sammie Beene dressed as characters from “Ten Apples Up On Top� by the famous author.

Students from Vilonia Freshman Academy and Vilonia High School took 501 LIFE along as they participated in the ACTM Regional Math Contest at the University of Central Arkansas. Katelyn Ohlde placed first in Algebra 2.

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to live in the community we serve.


We are... CONWAY | 501.932.5050 | CONWAY | 501-932-9700 CLINTON | 501.745.7200 | GREENBRIER | 501.679.7300 | LITTLE ROCK | 501.801.7402


“Loving LIFE� and celebrating with lifelong friends from Morrilton High School (Class of 1962) as they vacationed in Seattle: Peggy Janes (front, from left), Ann Wikstrom; Jane Crum (back), Shirley Underwood and Prudy Seidenschwarz.

The First Security Bank Gold Clubs from Saline County and Searcy took 501 LIFE along on a 12-day land/cruise tour of Alaska.

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Clinton resident Catherine Swift was “Loving LIFE� with grandkids Adalyn and Aiden Arbuckle, and Bryson and Benjamin Dacke at their Mustang Island beach house for Easter.

A group of sisters were “Loving LIFE� while enjoying the production of “Samson� in Branson: Freida Brooks of Conway (from left), Margaret Johnson of the Center community, Virginia Collins of Monticello and Florine Davis of Center.

Larry and Carlene Davis from Morrilton were “Loving LIFE” on a recent trip to the Smoky Mountains, visiting Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg, Tenn.

Argie Davis and Debbie King were “Loving LIFE” on top of Mount Helena in Helena, Mont.

Floyd and HD Ray were “Loving LIFE” at Saxman Totem Park in Alaska, the largest display of authentic native totems in the world. Pictured is the Chief Ebbits Totem dated 1842.

Pam Murray (from left), Stanley Murray, Carrie Ward and Randy Ward took 501 LIFE along as they celebrated the Regions Bank Chairman’s Club in Washington, D.C.

November 2019 | 15


Van and Marilyn Short and Ginger and Ronald Beene were “Loving LIFE� at Airlie Beach in Australia.

Van and Marilyn Short and Ginger and Ronald Beene were “Loving LIFE� and enjoying the Bay of Islands in New Zealand.

David and Debi House of Conway took 501 LIFE along as they celebrated their 40th wedding anniversary in Florence, Italy, and Nice, France.

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Heath and Krissy Lewis were “Loving LIFE” at the annual Reagan -Rockefeller Banquet.

“Loving LIFE” at the annual Reagan-Rockefeller Banquet at Centennial Valley Country Club in Conway: Crystal Taylor (from left), Krissy Lewis, Margaret Darter, Melonie Gillic, Sherry Koontz and Alyson Miller.

“Loving LIFE” at the annual ReaganRockefeller Banquet: Sen. Jason and Laurie Rapert with their daughter, Olivia.

“Loving LIFE” at the annual Reagan -Rockefeller Banquet: Margaret and Joe Darter.

U.S. Congressman French Hill (from left), Sen. Mark Johnson and John Nabholz.

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Participating in the groundbreaking ceremony for a $13 million medical office building at Conway Regional Medical Center were community leaders, hospital executive leaders and board members, and physicians and staff from Conway Obstetrics and Gynecology Clinic.

Conway Regional embarks on $13 million office building Conway Regional Health System recently broke ground for a $13 million, three-story medical office building. It is the first new building on campus in 18 years and will provide additional clinic and physician office space. The 42,530 square-foot building will house the Conway Obstetrics and Gynecology Clinic on the third floor, combining two current locations into one. The providers in the clinic include Drs. Andrew Cole, Carole Jackson, Phillip Gullic, Keitha Holland, Lauren Nolen and Katy Cox and nurse practitioner Katie Boyd. The additional building is the next step in a $60 million capital investment project that will expand and enhance services throughout the Conway Regional Health System, touching a total of 19 areas of the health system. “This initiative allows us to continue meeting the current needs of our patients, while also preparing to continue growing and adapting our health system alongside our growing communities,” said Conway Regional President and CEO Matt Troup. “As we focus on broadening areas of our health system, our priority is always our patients. Each day, our staff answers the call to deliver exceptional health care. These changes will enrich the experience of our patients and their families as we provide additional capacity, convenience and comfort.” Other elements of the capital investment project include a new and expanded critical care unit, 18 | 501 LIFE November 2019

investment in the pharmacy and lab services and expansion of the hospital’s family practice clinic in Greenbrier. The first step of the project featured the renovation of the Conway Regional Health and Fitness Center that was completed last winter and is open to the public. “As Conway Regional embarks on its second century of service through Central Arkansas and the River Valley, our goal is to provide health care that is recognized on a regional and national level,” said hospital board chair Andrea Woods, J.D. “We will achieve these goals by employing skilled and dedicated physicians and staff, investing in innovative technology and techniques and improving health care and outcomes for our patients.” Funding for both the new medical office building and the capital improvement projects is a combination of 2018 bond proceeds and revenue from operations. The office building will be located at 2180 Ada Ave. Cromwell Architects Engineers designed the building, and Conway-based Nabholz Construction is the general contractor. Plans call for the facility to be connected to the main hospital via a new, enclosed walkway. A recently-completed parking lot on Robinson Avenue, behind the hospital’s Ambulatory Surgery Center, will provide additional convenience for patients visiting the new building. Construction of the new facility is slated to be complete in the fall of 2020.

Conway Mayor Bart Castleberry speaks at ceremony.

Gaylin and Dr. Paul McChristian at the hospital paver recognizing him as Conway’s first OB/GYN.

Health system board members Wayne Cox (left) and Jeff Standridge.


Margaret Smith - Conway Corporation. Conway Regional Health System associates.

United Way ‘Stuff the Bus’ United Way of Central Arkansas partnered with Y107, Andy’s Frozen Custard, Conway Public Schools Transportation Department, Kona Ice and WalMart to host the annual “Stuff the Bus” school supply drive. The event eases the financial burden on families with school-aged children who are struggling to make ends meet. This project gives a student in need the required supplies, which promotes learning, encourages self-esteem and helps kids stay in school. It’s so much more than school supplies. It’s the first step to prepare students for a fulfilling, successful future. The community came out and helped the agency set children up for success in Faulkner, Perry and Van Buren counties. This year, more than 12,000 items were collected with a value of more than $30,000.

Erin Simpson - First Security Bank.

Crystal Floyd - Acxiom.


Mark England Freyaldenhoven Heating and Cooling.

Just like you.

You don’t take a break from taking care of the ones who matter most. Our people can appreciate that. At Conway Corp, we never stop thinking about the families we serve throughout the community. We’re a part of the big moments, as well as the mundane. And the goal? Making sure you don’t have to think about us.


Powering Conway since 1929.


(501) 450-6000



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Vinh Long grand opening Sonja J. Keith photos

Gov. Asa Hutchinson and other dignitaries were on hand in September for the grand opening of the Vinh Long – Arkansas plant in Morrilton. The company’s mission is “to bring quality furniture and home décor to shoppers who seek simple, well-made and stylistic products at an affordable price point.” Vinh Long strives to excel in quality in manufacturing, product and service. Vinh Long is the first Vietnamese plant to locate in the U.S. There are about 50 employees at the Morrilton plant, with plans to hire additional workers. For more information, call 501.242.6004 or visit

Han Tran (left) and Stephanie Lipsmeyer.

Cutting the ribbon at the grand opening: Mike Preston (from left), Allen Lipsmeyer, Gov. Asa Hutchinson and Madam Hanh.

Mayor Allen Lipsmeyer (from left), Gov. Asa Hutchinson, Madam Hanh and Mike Preston, executive director of the Arkansas Economic Development Commission (AEDC) and Secretary of Commerce.

Madam Hanh (front, from left) with Ott Insurance representatives Patsy Bajorek, Ashley Spencer, Michelle Mallett; Stanley Gordon Jr. (back) and Chris Phillips of Auto Owners Insurance.

Matt Twyford (from left), Morrilton Mayor Allen Lipsmeyer, County Judge Jimmy Hart, Rich Moellers and Dale Gifford.

County Judge Jimmy Hart (from left), Dung Tran and Dale Gifford.

Ruby Johnson (from left), Lolita Johnson and Gary Green.

Sonny Stoven (from left), Shawn Halbrook and Trenton Anderson.

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CSO Guild hosts Jazz It Up gala Todd Owens photos

The Conway Symphony Orchestra Guild recently hosted Jazz It Up, its annual community fundraising gala, at the Centennial Valley Country Club Event Center. This year’s theme was “Rockin That Jazz,” with music provided by the local classic rock band “Get Off My Lawn.” Kevin Bass heads the band, which played classic rock tunes that showcased some symphony players collaborating with the band. One exciting number featured the Conway Symphony Orchestra’s Maestro Israel Getzov accompanying the band on violin. For more information on the CSO Guild, contact board president Bev Freiley at 501.908.9855.

Alpha Sigma Tau volunteers: Zoey Rofkahr (front, from left), Hattie Howard, Blaire Bledsoe; Anna Wade (back), Sarah Sparks, Bailee Stevens, Emma Reed, Mattie Elsinger and Alexis Roach.

Dr. David and Bertie Doyle.

Fran and Jerry Nichols.

Liz Taylor McMullen and Izzy Getzov.

Bill and Sandra Devore.

Pam Strassle (left) and Lynne Duncan.

Paul and Shirley Taber.

Rob and Leigh Ann Hambuchen.

Bev Freiley (left) and Vicki Crockett.

Sadie and Ray Crumbley.

Sarah Frost (left) and Sarah Morse.

Stefanie and Paul Dickinson.

November 2019 | 21


501 LIFE Make Me Over winners Vicki McCauley (seated, from left) and Tracy Martin met with Kayla Thomas (back), Dr. Rachel Deal, Kim Burgin and Traci Henderson.


Journey continues for winners Tracy Martin and Vicki McCauley have taken a few more steps in their 501 LIFE Make Me Over journey. 501 LIFE teamed up with some amazing sponsors to offer Tracy and Vicki a unique makeover experience. The two were selected from entries submitted for the contest. Sponsors include Bledsoe Chiropractic, Conway Regional Health and Fitness Center, Daisy-A-Day Florist and Gifts, E.L. Clinical Esthetics, First Service Bank, Harrington and Company, Julie’s Sweet Shoppe and Rachel Deal General Dentist. Tracy and Vicki recently met with three of the sponsors – Dr. Amanda Bledsoe, Dr. Rachel Deal and Susan Isom at E.L. Clinical. “Dr. Bledsoe fitted me for shoe inserts to help with the leveling of my hips,” said Tracy. “I received vitamins which are very beneficial, and a massage. The massage released so much tension that my body wouldn’t have released. It was very relaxing! “Everyone in the office was so nice and encouraging.” Both makeover winners were also impressed with Deal and her clinic staff. “I received X-rays, teeth cleaning and was fitted for molds for teeth whitening trays,” said Tracy. “Everyone was helpful and very friendly!” In addition, Tracy and Vicki visited E.L. Clinical for a skincare consultation and treatment. The two previously went to the Conway Regional Health and Fitness Center, where Amanda Castillo, marketing coordinator and group exercise coordinator, presented them with a six-month membership. The two also met with Sarah Money, 22 | 501 LIFE November 2019

E.L. Clinical’s Susan Isom (from left), Vicki McCauley and Tracy Martin. wellness coordinator and registered dietitian. Both Tracy and Vicki are pleased with the progress that has been made during the makeover and appreciative of the services they have received from sponsors. “Things are going well,” said Tracy.

November 2019 | 23



Maret Cahill Wicks

NATIVE OF: Tempe, Ariz. EDUCATION: Studied art and interior design in college. JOB: Executive director of United Way of Central Arkansas for seven years, with nine months as resource director. WHY DID YOU CHOOSE YOUR VOCATION: My family is very community driven and gives back through service. Dad was a city councilman in Tempe for years and then went on to be the director of apprenticeships for the State of Arizona. My big brother is the president of the Bricklayers Union in Arizona and New Mexico. My sister was the director of a senior center and then worked in programming for parks and rec in Tempe. My baby brother is a Navy Seal. There was always a strong push that we should give back to the community we live in. FAVORITE THANKSGIVING TRADITION: I work for United Way and we put on the annual Turkey Trot on Thanksgiving morning so that by default is my family’s holiday tradition. My children help with it every year and now that they are beginning to bring home significant others that help as well. But, my favorite tradition grew from Turkey Trot. As you can imagine by the time we get home around 11:30 a.m. I don’t feel much like cooking and cooking the days leading up is also very hard. We made a new tradition where each kid brings a side dish to share and we vote on the side dishes. The winner gets bragging rights for a year. It makes for a very fun day! HOBBIES/SPECIAL INTERESTS: I love to paint, bike ride and read. I am an exercise enthusiast. HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE YOURSELF: An outgoing introvert. I am a loving wife and mother. I truly enjoy hanging out with my adult kids and my hubby. WHAT IS ONE THING PEOPLE DON’T KNOW ABOUT YOU: I love mysteries. MOST ENJOYED WEEKEND ACTIVITY: Hanging out in the backyard by the pool and playing games with the kids; and painting with my daughter. WHAT IS YOUR MOTTO: Simply….be kind! WHAT DO YOU ENJOY MOST ABOUT LIVING IN THE 501: We are so blessed to live in an area where we can be outdoors most of the year. People are just so nice in this area and I can say that from experience. I have lived in four states and this is a great state!

24 | 501 LIFE November 2019

Maret and Jeff Wicks are loving life in the 501, where she is the executive director of United Way of Central Arkansas and he is an Edward Jones financial advisor. Both will be helping with the United Way’s Turkey Trot planned on Thanksgiving Day in Conway. (Mike Kemp photo)


Jeff Wicks

WHERE DID YOU GROW UP: Tioga, Pa. EDUCATION: Bachelor’s degree in business administration from Mansfield University, in Pennsylvania. JOB: Financial advisor with Edward Jones Investments. WHY DID YOU CHOOSE YOUR VOCATION: I wanted to use my years of sales experience to help others. FAVORITE THANKSGIVING TRADITION: Working the United Way Turkey Trot with my wife and family. HOBBIES/SPECIAL INTERESTS: Working on projects with my wife, watching my youngest play baseball, hanging out with our blended family HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE YOURSELF: Caring, helpful and always willing to help a friend. WHAT IS ONE THING PEOPLE DON’T KNOW ABOUT YOU: I was a drummer in a rock cover band and I used to be the instructor for a drum corps. MOST ENJOYED WEEKEND ACTIVITY: Relaxing in our pool in the summer and bike riding in the fall. WHAT IS YOUR MOTTO: Early is on time, on time is late WHAT DO YOU ENJOY MOST ABOUT LIVING IN THE 501: The weather. I moved from upstate New York and grew up in Pennsylvania where we had six months of winter. I love that it is warm here and so are the people.


Fifth Annual United Way of Central Arkansas Turkey Trot 5K

The Fifth Annual United Way of Central Arkansas Turkey Trot 5K – Family Fun Run and Walk will be held Thursday, Nov. 28, at Centennial Valley Country Club. Early registration is $30 for the 5K (which starts at 8:30 a.m.) and $20 for the 1-mile run (which starts at 8 a.m.) for children 10 and younger. Prices go up after Sunday, Nov. 10. After the 5K, there will be the presentation of medals and awards as well as costume and pet costume contests. To register or for more information, visit


CITY: Conway.

HOW WE MET: We were set up on a blind date by a mutual friend and we just hit it off immediately. THE PROPOSAL: We had a short courtship in traditional terms but we knew we wanted to be together. Our kids all liked each other, and everyone just got along. We only had two kids at home, and they hit it off too. We chose our wedding date to honor Maret’s grandparents because they were married after only knowing one another for two weeks. They may have only known each other two weeks but they were married more than 60 years so we felt that would be good luck. WEDDING BELLS: Nov. 17, 2014, at Traci and Josh Smith’s backyard in Conway. It was quick, because it was the coldest day of the year, but it was perfect. We then took the whole family to Arizona to meet Maret’s family. CHILDREN: Maret’s – Andy, Ethan and Grace. Jeff’s – Kyle and Jordan. PETS: Two dogs, Stella and Cali, and the alpha cat, Kitty. FAMILY ACTIVITIES ENJOYED TOGETHER: Backyard barbecues and hanging out in the pool.

November 2019 | 25


A love of writing

Student leads efforts for online paper Conway High School’s Nabiha Khetani’s efforts to create an online newspaper were successful and the Wampus Cat Student News launched her junior year. (Mike Kemp photos)

26 | 501 LIFE November 2019

by Katie Kemp

Nabiha Khetani has been a writer since before she knew what that meant. “When I was little and didn’t know the alphabet or how to write, I would just scribble on a notebook and pretend I was writing,” she said. It’s no surprise that as she grew up, she developed a knack for putting real words on pages. When she enrolled in Jamie Bratton’s Journalism I class during her sophomore year at Conway High School, she did so as a prerequisite to joining the yearbook staff. But she quickly identified an opportunity she felt journalism students could benefit from: a school newspaper. As one of the first assignments of the class, Khetani and a classmate outlined their vision for a student-led newspaper. “One of my friends at Central High School in Little Rock was really involved in newspaper, so that’s kind of what caught my interest,” Khetani said. “ I knew I wanted to do yearbook the following year, but then for newspaper, it wasn’t a thing. I was really questioning as to why it wasn’t, because smaller schools had it, so why didn’t we?” Rather than get a grade for the assignment and call it a day, Khetani decided to put the plan into action and work toward To check out the Conway High establishing an online School online newspaper, visit newspaper for Conway High students. It took a year of conversations with administration, but during Khetani’s junior year, Wampus Cat Student News went live online. On the website, you’ll find campus news, sports coverage, features, profiles and opinion pieces – all written by Conway High students. As students in Jamie Bratton’s Journalism I class learn the basics of news and feature writing, they are given the chance to have their work published through the newspaper. “The first unit (of the class) is just writing. How to write news stories, how to write feature stories, learning the basics of it,” Khetani said. “So as the year progressed and they got into the class, they became better writers as well.” Khetani was quick to recruit students outside of the journalism classes, though – she told her friends, hung up posters, posted on social media and encouraged anyone interested in writing to get involved. What you’ll find on the website now is a collection of stories written by all kinds of students with a diverse range of interests, from opinion polls to weather reports to pop culture commentary. The publication was started with a mission to “provide first-hand experience for the staff of potential journalists, but also to exemplify the students of Conway High School.” You don’t have to read far to see how both of these goals were accomplished in one fell swoop. As more stories were published and more students started to gain interest,

Wampus Cat News

both Bratton and Khetani saw potential for the publication to stand out against those from other schools. The Arkansas Scholastic Press Association holds an annual competition for student-led publications in Arkansas, and Bratton and Khetani decided to take a chance and submit the still-new online newspaper for review in the competition. They believed the work the staff had done could succeed, but were nonetheless pleasantly surprised at the results. Because the site was still in its infancy and its staff was still small, no Conway High students were able to attend the awards ceremony. Khetani learned the results secondhand. “One of my friends from Central High actually texted me about it. She said, ‘Congratulations on getting online editor of the year!’ And I was like, ‘Wait, what?’” The news site received an overall “Excellent” rating, and Khetani was honored as Online Editor of the Year. In addition to these overall awards, several students were recognized for their work on the site. Khetani received an excellent rating in news writing and an honorable mention in sports feature; Savannah Eckle received an honorable mention in feature story and an excellent rating in column; Sydney Greathouse received an excellent rating in editorial; Karen Demeyere received an honorable mention in personality profile; Mason Choate received an honorable mention in sports news story; and Hannah Taylor received an honorable mention in photo essay, as well as both superior and “Best of ASPA” ratings in review. “You always try to tell students, ‘I’ll see what I can do; we can make this happen.’ But I don’t know that the expectation is that a student will really take an idea like this and run with it and see it through to its completion, but she did,” Bratton said. “I’m just really proud of what she was able to do.”

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November 2019 | 27

NEIGHBORS maumelle

Born to fly WWII veteran recalls service by Donna Lampkin Stephens

Flying has been a part of Billy Mitchell’s life for 80 years — since he was 17. Now 97, the Maumelle man has a lifetime of memories of sailing through the sky, including service in World War II as a member of the Army Air Corps. “The older I get, the fewer of us (WWII veterans) there are, and the more notoriety we get for being some of the few left,” Mitchell said. “But my flying helped me all of my life. It was the center of my life.” Mitchell grew up in Paragould and graduated from Paragould High School in 1939. That fall, he came to what was then Arkansas State Teachers College (now the University of Central Arkansas), which offered a civilian pilot

training course. “(President Franklin D.) Roosevelt was getting us ready for war,” Mitchell remembered, referring to the expansion of Adolf Hitler’s Nazi Party from Germany all across Europe. Mitchell’s father had the $40 it cost to get his son into the ASTC training program, which he started early in 1940 — before he turned 18. “I think maybe I had never touched an airplane until I was at Teachers College,” he said. “I think I just wanted something to do.” He recalled his English professor sharing news of the war in Europe from the Swiss German-language newspaper Der Bund. “In ‘39, the Germans had taken Poland,” he said. “And back then, people in the U.S. still remembered World War I, and they wanted to be far away from combat, so Roosevelt couldn’t

Billy Mitchell served in World War II as a member of the Army Air Corps. (Mike Kemp photo)

28 | 501 LIFE November 2019

get into the war until something happened.” After completing the first part of the course, he earned his private pilot’s license on June 8, 1940, and he began the second course in the summer of 1941. That course entailed flying a bigger plane and even some aerobatics. “That one didn’t end until sometime in October, and I was tired of school, so I dropped out and went to St. Louis and got a job in an airplane factory,” Mitchell said. The Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor on Dec. 7, 1941, resulting in America’s entry into the war. Mitchell said he took a better job with airway traffic control in Kansas City and later went to Memphis, where he passed his written exam for a commercial license. From there he worked at the West Memphis airport and gained the flying time to earn the commercial license in the fall of ‘42. He later worked as a civilian for a ferrying group in Memphis in early 1943. “At that time, there was a shortage of pilots, so the ferrying group (part of the Army Air Corps) would take commercial pilots in with a commission and wings,” Mitchell said. “I was classified 1-A (available for military service); I was about to be drafted, so that’s when I took the job with the Air Corps in February of ‘43. “I just went to work with good pay and got my commission as a second lieutenant with wings, and I stayed there three years.” Not quite 23, he found his first military assignment in Great Falls, Mont., where he joined other pilots flying Bell P-39s, “little fighter airplanes” to Fairbanks, Alaska, where Russians would pick them up and take them back to Europe to aid the Allied effort.

After 15 months, he was sent to India, where he served as an administrative pilot to Burma and Singapore, flying PX supplies and mail, and where he “flew the Hump” from India into China. According to, Allied pilots christened the operation that crossed the Himalayan foothills and supplied aircraft and equipment to the Chinese “the Hump.” “That was the only way we could supply them because the oceans were controlled by the Japanese,” Mitchell said. “The conditions for flying were terrible — you’d have warm, moist air coming up over the Bay of Bengal, and when it would reach the mountains, it would form terrific thunderstorms. It was terrible flying. I had several friends who never came back from the Hump.” According to the website, more than 1,000 men and 600 planes were lost navigating the 530 miles of the Hump. Mitchell recalled the base in Eastern India that contained a room with maps “that sort of kept us in touch and showed us when the war was won in Europe.” Victory in Europe Day (V-E) came on May 8, 1945, shortly after Hitler committed suicide. “Then we were anxious — we wanted to come home,” Mitchell said. “We were glad the (Allied) effort would be put into the Pacific rather than Europe. There were rumors that something big was going to happen, but I think no one really knew that the bomb would be dropped.” American forces detonated nuclear weapons over the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki on Aug.

Veteran continued on Page 70

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Lance Nail has used unique approaches in his classroom at Woodrow Cummins Elementary School in Conway. (Mike Kemp photos)

‘Nailed it’

Educator ushers in new teaching pedagogy by Dwain Hebda

There was never any doubt, as even he himself will tell you, that Lance Nail would grow up to be a teacher. “My entire family is made up of educators,” he said. “My dad teaches at the college level; my mom is a teacher at Hendrix College in Conway. My brother is a high school baseball coach and middle school math teacher at Ouachita High School near Arkadelphia. My grandparents on my mom’s side are both educators at the college level. My aunt is a middle school teacher.” When you come from a stable like that, it’s hard to stand out. But that’s exactly what the 27-year-old third-grade teacher at Woodrow Cummins Elementary 30 | 501 LIFE November 2019

in Conway has done. First, there’s his gender. Depending on which source you consult, only about 11-13 percent of primary school educators nationwide are men. Nail said this statistic was more motivation than deterrent. “I know how prevalent divorce is and no fathers in the home, so having that positive male role model early on is important,” he said. “I’ve known since high school that I was going to be going into early childhood education.” After graduating from the University of Central Arkansas, Nail taught first grade his rookie year at Woodrow Cummins, then switched to third grade. He said he favors teaching third-graders, “because they’re old enough to read and tie their shoes, but they aren’t

at that age yet where they are back-talking their teacher and they’re too cool for school. “That’s another reason why I wanted to become an elementary school teacher. I believe it’s really important to reach these kids and get them to love school early on.” To this end, Nail has developed innovative teaching practices that challenge conventional ideas of how learning happens. Bucking generations of teaching pedagogy that demanded students adapt to rigid, almost militaristic formulas, Nail embraces bending both environment and content delivery to fit each student’s learning style. It’s a concept backed by research but also something Nail understands intimately. “I remember my second-grade teacher calling in my

parents to have a conference about my inattentiveness in class,” he said. “That conference led to a series of events which enabled me to be diagnosed with ADHD. School was never easy for me as a kid. I was constantly fidgeting, getting in trouble and had poor impulse control. “I felt I was called to be a teacher especially for those with similar struggles, because I have an understanding of what a lot of kids go through.” Nail’s classroom philosophy starts at the most fundamental level – seating. There are no assigned seats in his classroom nor is seating limited to desks. Instead, he offers a range of options and lets his students decide where they are going to sit and on what. “In my classroom I have flexible seating, that is a new educational trend that allows students to get their wiggles out,” he said. “The analogy that’s been connected to flexible seating is the Starbucks-style classroom. In my classroom I have different sizes and heights of tables and with this I have yoga balls, wobble stools, I have floor rockers, benches, bar stools and crate seats. “In addition to all those different types of seating, I have a group carpet that can fit all 25 of my kids where we do a lot of our whole-group learning. I have a couch, bean bags and some more little cushions as well.”

Nail combines this unconventional seating with technology. He moves around the classroom teaching from an iPad Pro, casting lessons and videos on dual 65- and 55-inch flatscreen televisions. He edits worksheets and marks paper with an Apple Pencil instead of being moored at a hard-wired PC, which makes him more efficient, too. “I’m really passionate about the technology that I use in my classroom,” he said. “I was able to get a lot of technology and all of this flexible seating from a donation my grandmother made to my classroom. Since she was an educator, she knows the struggles of funds in education. She saw my vision of what I wanted, and she decided to donate a pretty large sum of money.” If all of this sounds a little touchy-feely, Woodrow Cummins parents don’t seem to care. Nail’s curriculum is challenging, but because he accommodates his students’ individual learning styles, he’s getting results. And, his tactics are starting to spread to other classrooms throughout the school. At his principal’s request, he taught his fellow educators to use the technology and then he went before the PTO to ask for additional hardware. “I ended up convincing the PTO to spend some money to get 65-inch TVs, iPads, Apple Pencils and Apple TVs for almost every single one of the teachers at our school,” he said. “It was about a $14,000 presentation.” For his efforts, Nail was named the 2019-2020 Woodrow Cummins Elementary School Teacher of the Year. It’s a nice award that he’s proud of, but not nearly as proud as he is of what’s happening daily in his classroom and throughout his school. “I don’t see myself as just a teacher; my job title is ‘teacher-relationship builder,’” he said. “I believe building personal relationships with students is the cornerstone of having a successful classroom. Therefore, I am constantly trying to find new ways to build those relationships with students.”

I believe building personal relationships with students is the cornerstone of having a successful classroom. — Lance Nail

November 2019 | 31


Non-traditional Morrilton teachers sport unconventional backgrounds

Morrilton High School teachers Jasmine Wilson (seated), Jamie Mullins (back, from left), Krystle Hooten and Stephanie Bates took a non-traditional path to teaching in the classroom. (Mike Kemp photos)

32 | 501 LIFE November 2019

by Dwain Hebda

Some people know early on what they want to do in life. Then there are others who take the scenic route to their final professional destinations. For four teachers at Morrilton High School, the road to the classroom has been littered with detours and roundabouts. But as each finds their home shaping young minds, they bring with them the collective wisdom and insights that their journey gave them. “At Morrilton High School, we search for

educators who have a true heart for kids. I personally love to recommend individuals who have demonstrated a burning desire to enrich and change kids’ lives,” said MHS Principal Danny Ketcherside. “God blessed us with four educators who came from various walks of life but found their heart at Morrilton High School. Some were military, managers, corporate members or started in the Game and Fish area. We are truly blessed that their paths led them to be members of the Devil Dog Nation.”

Jamie Mullins Math, AP calculus, pre-calculus, trigonometry, honors algebra II Grades 10-12

Each of us can remember a teacher whose investment of time or attention altered the course of our lives. Jamie Mullins hopes to be one such teacher. The Morrilton native graduated from the same high school where she now teaches mathematics. Over the past three years here, she’s regularly come face-to-face with the teenage version of herself. “Every class period I see myself in someone,” she said. “I will even tell my students ‘Oh man, you remind me of me when I was your age.’ But I love it because it’s a challenge for me to try to figure out what’s going on in their brain and show them the other side of things.” After high school, Mullins earned an associate’s degree and toyed with the idea of owning a restaurant. In truth, she didn’t know what she wanted to do, and she drifted. “I was sort of a free spirit, very much all over the place, going wherever the road took me,” she said. “It wasn’t until I started getting my life right with God and I started letting Him guide me that things came together. I prayed about it a lot and decided I needed to go back to school but I still didn’t know what I was going back to school for. I was just going to get the rest of my general education.” A college algebra professor saw her potential and turned her on to the idea of pursuing higher mathematics courses to become a teacher. Along the way she learned mathematics could be as rigid or flexible as you need it to be, a concept she uses with great skill with students. “At first the structure is what I needed. I needed there to be a grounded right or wrong answer for everything,” she said. “But then the more I grew in math, the more I’ve come to realize that there’s not a right or wrong answer to everything. It’s all in how you word the question. “In my classroom, I’ve learned to give my students the freedom to find the loopholes and to find the errors in my questions so those students who were like me and struggled like I did, it gives them a challenge. They get to use their creative brain to figure out what I’ve messed up and how I’ve worded it wrong so that they can make the problem easier. There is lot of creativity in math; you just have to be creative. “Teachers live for the ‘A-ha!’ moments, the moments where the students say, ‘Oh, now I get it.’ Honestly, I can’t envision myself not having those moments with my kids.”

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Stephanie Bates

Jasmine Wilson

Krystle Hooten

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Integrated biology

Grades: 9-12

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Jasmine Wilson is early in her career in the public school system, but teaching has long been part of her professional life, having held a variety of trainer roles during a career in business. “I worked for Arkansas Tech University for several years and Pulaski Tech and for UCA,” she said. “While I was working for UCA in their extension office, I was coordinating and developing training for them. My responsibility was to work with the business community to figure out what their needs were and to contract our teachers for training.” When Hewlett-Packard came to Conway, Wilson was the liaison between the company and the university to set up pre-employment training. The company eventually hired Wilson, specifically working within human resources. Eventually the family found themselves in Dallas where corporate life began to wear on her. “We moved back home and chose Morrilton because my dad has a business here and my mom is getting a little older and we wanted to be close,” Wilson said. “We have a 7-year-old and with all those things in play, my husband said, ‘Why don’t you do what you wanted to do anyway?’ I just jumped at the chance to come and teach.” Having come from the business world – and human resources, no less – Wilson misses no opportunity to prepare students for success in a career. “Any time you ask the business community what they’re challenged with when they hire entry level employees, their overwhelming response is soft skills,” she said. “Having people show up on time and come in and not just earn a paycheck but have a passion to want to pursue a goal, or even have a goal, is hard to find. I’ve been on the other side and I’ve seen that’s the truth.” Wilson sees the same short-sightedness in many students regarding their education. She considers her role a buttress against these attitudes which carry over, for good or for ill, to the working world. “The challenge for me is, you do have some students, especially during ninth or tenth grade, where they’re not really motivated or don’t understand the importance of setting goals,” she said. “If you have a goal, then you have a reason to come to school every morning because you know you want to do something after high school, whatever that something is. “Many of these students may not have any aspirations to leave [Morrilton] which is totally fine. But they at least need to have a goal to start their career or start their college journey. There’s always a way to reach those kids. I just try to find creative ways to do that.”

Grades 10-12

Grades 9-12

A desire to serve others has always reigned in Stephanie Bates’ life. The second year MHS teacher will soon observe 20 years of military service – eight of them active duty – in the United State Air National Guard. She sees teaching as an extension of the investment she has made in the health and welfare of her community. “I have always wanted to be in the education field,” she said. “When my family and I relocated to Morrilton for my husband’s career as an Arkansas State Trooper, I took this new adventure and seized the opportunity to utilize my military education benefits to attend college full-time and complete my bachelor’s degree.” Bates, who served as a paraprofessional at Morrilton Elementary School while attending college full time, completed her degree in business management from the University of Arkansas e-Versity to complement the skills she’d picked up in the service. “The tools and extensive training I have obtained in the USAF in the past 19-plus years have instilled strong leadership skills, discipline and a strong work ethic,” she said. “Teaching is a profession that literally keeps you on your toes and keeps you young at heart. It’s a job where you have a purpose and you are allowed the opportunity to enhance the lives of students and contribute to making their future one that is bright and productive.” The East Detroit, Mich., native said she has modeled her classroom to reflect her diverse background of experiences, while still allowing students to be their own person. “My classroom is a fun, colorful and inviting environment, where my students genuinely enjoy coming to,” she said. “My teaching style is real, relatable, relevant, caring, compassionate. It is okay to make mistakes here, as long as you own it, grow and learn from it.” All that said, Bates is the first to admit that it took some time to get comfortable in the classroom, so she leveraged some in-house resources – her three teenage sons – to get up to speed. Part of her success is recognizing that she doesn’t have things completely figured out and that leaves her open to learn and discover better ways of doing things. “Every day is a learning opportunity to make things better for the next day,” she said. “Each day I come up with a better way to make the next day fabulous. I am always learning and growing to be the best that I can for my students. “Challenges are what make life interesting and overcoming is what makes life interesting. We don’t grow when things are easy; we grow when we face challenges.” 34 | 501 LIFE November 2019

It may have taken Guy native Krystle Hooten a decade to use her biology degree from the University of Central Arkansas professionally, but she was never far from the natural world. “I have a 9-year-old and an 8-year-old and I’m really outdoorsy,” she said. “I like to fish, love to go hiking; pretty much anything that I can be outside, I like to do that. “When I would go in the mornings and go run with my kids, I’d always tell them things like, ‘Do you hear that bird? That’s a mockingbird singing. Do you see that tree? That’s a red maple or that’s a sycamore tree.’ When we’d go fishing, we’d always identify the fish and sometimes we’d catch hybrid fish and that was always really exciting because you got to see something in nature that you wouldn’t ordinarily see.” Hooten’s original goal in college was to work for the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission but when that didn’t pan out, she left biology behind, save for these interludes with her children. Teaching never crossed her mind. “[Teaching] was never, ever in the back of my head,” she said. “As a matter of fact, when I was an undergrad, I remember I was in a lab with another student and she was in for education and we talked about it. I was like, ‘You’re crazy. I can’t believe you want to be a teacher. That’s going to be so hard.’ Now here I am.” Hooten earned her master’s degree in teaching from UCA in 2017 and is in her second year teaching at Morrilton High School. She admits to being “terrified” on her first day but found out later the students were more intimidated of her than she was of them. Since then, she’s found her stride and values every day with her classes. “I think maybe I scared my students really bad,” she said. “I had to learn what was going to work; I learned that I couldn’t be a dictator. I had to, not become friends with them because I’m still their teacher, but I had to bring it down to their level. I had to get in my groove, know what was going on and what I was doing. “They said they were terrified of me the first day whenever we went over the rules, and the first week was really stressful. Then I really got to know my students and they’re fantastic. I mean they’re amazing kids. They’re very respectful and I think it’s maybe because they appreciate that I love them.”



November 2019 | 35

A revolution FEATURE

Searcy, businesses featured on show Story and photo by Megan Stroud

After nearly a year of coming together as a community under the rallying call of the revolution, Season Four of The Small Business Revolution is here, but the momentum of the revolution in Searcy is far from over. The Small Business Revolution — Main Street is an eight-episode television series presented by Deluxe to feature the impact small businesses have in towns across America. Co-host and marketing expert Amanda Brinkman’s idea to spend Deluxe’s marketing budget helping other businesses has grown into a movement. After submissions, town visits and a public vote, Searcy was chosen to be the featured town on and received a $500,000 investment, marketing training from Deluxe and Amanda Brinkman, and help from co-host and renovation icon Ty Pennington. “From the beginning of the campaign to try and win Small Business Revolution, we experienced community-wide unity unlike anything I’ve ever experienced before,” said Mat Faulkner, owner of Think Idea Studio. “All city departments, universities, churches, schools, businesses, community members — everyone focused their efforts on one common goal. This unity in itself is paramount to Searcy continuing to see positive growth and change moving forward. I believe we were already headed in the right direction before Deluxe came to town, and this experience really accelerated our progress.” During his first visit, Pennington was “enchanted” by the charm of Searcy’s downtown square, the art movement and murals, and the historic architecture in places like the Rialto Theater. Brinkman was taken with Searcy’s heart for the foster care community and the drive of the town to move forward. “In our very first visit when Searcy was in the Top 10 phase before we had moved on to the final six that were put up for public vote, I was just so struck by how many parents I met who were foster care families,” Brinkman said in a Skype interview on the day the show premiered. “I just think it’s such a sign of love and openness to do that. From the very first moment I stepped into Searcy, I heard a lot about that and it was certainly something that helped Searcy stand out to us.” After being chosen as the featured town, Deluxe took applications and chose 12 finalists that ultimately became the six businesses featured on the show. In the first episode Brinkman discusses choosing these six businesses and the challenge it was to not only pick, 36 | 501 LIFE November 2019

Watch all eight episodes of The Small Business Revolution, meet the people and places seen on the show and learn more about Searcy at Searcy residents recently gathered at the Rialto Theater in downtown for the premiere of Season 4 of the Small Business Revolution. but to select businesses that represented Searcy’s business landscape. “Every year we are looking for what makes this particular town unique. In Searcy, the thing that stands out most is their universal commitment to giving back, so it’s only appropriate that two of our 12 finalists were non-profits,” Brinkman said on episode one of Small Business Revolution — Mainstreet. Ultimately, Whilma’s Filipino Restaurant, ARganic woodwork, El Mercado, Nooma Yoga Studio, Zion Climbing and Event Center, and Savor and Sip Coffeehouse were chosen, and each received mentor relationships, personalized marketing strategies, new websites, $25,000 in renovations, and financial advice from experts at Deluxe with an episode of the show summarizing their journey. “The six businesses that won a spot on the show received improvements from Deluxe, but the improvements didn’t stop there,” Faulkner said. “Other businesses throughout town jumped on the wave of excitement and took time to care for and improve their own businesses. Owners began cleaning the exteriors of their buildings, updated their branding and launched new marketing efforts. We also experienced an increase in cooperation and cross-promotion from one business to another. Even competitors reached out to refer customers to each other.” Businesses across town came together to help

each other, expressing what Pennington described as a “synergy.” At Beats & Eats, which became the backdrop for the finale episode, Brinkman encouraged the community to continue to support each other and said, “Searcy is certainly poised to prove what happens when a town leads with love.” In addition to the renovations of the six businesses, Deluxe also announced at Beats & Eats that they were funding a grant for Sparrow’s Promise to fund the foster care work in Searcy, a revitalization of Citizen’s Park complete with a stage for live outdoor performances, and a mural representing diversity and inclusion. After all the work they did, the momentum shouldn’t stop here. It’s meant to carry Searcy further into a revolution of its own. In the finale episode, Pennington said, “We want to come help you succeed, and we will give you all the tools we have at our disposal to make that happen, but after that it’s up to you.” “The magic question is ‘What’s next? How do we make the most of this gift?’ I think the answers lie in reflecting on what it took to get to this point,” Faulkner said. “Sustaining collaboration, communication and unity among all organizations and leaders is vital to continued growth and progress. This is everyone’s hometown, and we all need to take an active role in making it better.”

November 2019 | 37


A few of Vivian Hogue’s personal items that evoke special memories. (Mike Kemp photo)

The value of stories retold The autumnal time of the year is often one that prompts reminiscing, whether about recent or longpast matters. We may remember people, experiences or items in our past, usually suggested by unexpected sights, sounds, touches, words or smells. I can still call into my senses the smell of my grandparents’ log cabin – old wood, both in the structure and in the kitchen’s woodbox of kindling for the woodburning cook stove. The interior walls of red oak logs and chinking were covered with newspapers topped with ancient wallpaper. Besides the hum of resident dirt-daubers, it held the many decades of scents of cooking, fireplace smoke, Granddad’s rope Vivian Lawson of chewing tobacco, cedar at Christmas, kids growing and the elderly dying. Hogue One of my favorite items of remembrance is small. It is my dad’s 5X to 20X “loupe,” which is a set A native of Conway, Vivian Lawson Hogue graduated of three tiny magnifying glasses of varying strengths from the University of Central and diameters that fold into a protective housing. Arkansas with a degree in art education. A retired teacher, she They are used by many professions, but in his field worked in the Conway School of botany, they could help observe small identifying District for 23 years. She can be reached at vhogue@conwaycorp. characteristics in plants, rocks and soils. He would sit net. at our coffee table with plant or soil samples spread around while doing his “homework.” Sometimes he would call me over to look at a miniscule bloom through his loupe that hung from around his neck by an old black shoelace. The shoelace is still attached, although broken and shortened now by its 80-plus years of use. Before the 1750s, men and women left handwritten notes at the home or business they visited but found the person not present. By the late 1800s, “calling cards” were the fashion and could be very elaborate. They had their own system of etiquette or presentation and were collected in special books. Today they would correspond to business cards of about the same size. 38 | 501 LIFE November 2019

My mother’s calling cards remain in a book covered with dark red velvet and trimmed with metal corner protectors and a lock. The pages contain spaces for several cards, each with four diagonal slits into which the card corners fit. The cards have her embossed name and the usual richly-colored motifs of flowers, hands in friendship and perhaps an uplifting message. Some have raised or twodimensional designs. One can step back into the 1890s in a second just by turning pages. On my 30th birthday in 1973, my mother presented to me an endearing gift. She had decided to have my baby shoes bronzed. I felt so cherished, so fortunate to have had such shoes as a toddler, but I did notice there was only half of a pair. The details came when I discovered her handwritten note, folded and proudly tucked inside the shoe. She wrote, “Vivian, this little shoe was worn by Noel in 1939, then again by you in 1943. Noel will get the other one for his birthday in July. Love, Mother.” I still treasure it, but it reminded me that as the family’s last child and only girl during mid-World War II, it was the beginning of my wearing boyish hand-medowns. A photo of me as a 3-year-old wearing some anonymous brother’s leopardskin patterned swim trunks is all the proof I need to make my point. There were a few times she did get excessive with ruffles and ribbons. I would bet, however, and sincerely hope she wouldn’t have reversed the situation had I been the only boy and the rest were girls. The older brothers do insist, though, that as youngsters they were forced to serve as mannequins for young girls’ dresses she made for a college sewing class assignment. They were good at telling eye-rolling ‘‘enhanced” stories, but I do believe that one was true. My keepsakes of my children’s art work, notes and cards are safely stored and there is a box of vintage 19th- and 20th-century photographs of people and places, many unlabeled and unnamed. Although others could view them and be reminded of other times and people, no recollections will be like mine nor will mine be like theirs. Indeed, not everyone can have an Aunt Zula who removed her prosthetic eyeball and false teeth to the shock and delight of my children. Everyone has a story and is a story. The story may become “enhanced” over time, but if it produces a smile or tear, it is worth telling.


The most wonderful time of year We made it! It’s finally here! It’s my favorite time of the year! Lots of bad punctuation, but I just can’t help it. I’m literally beside myself as I contemplate the events directly ahead. Cool weather, fall foliage, pumpkins, pumpkin pie, pumpkin soup, pumpkin lattes, football, deer camp and family. Yep, it’s the most wonderful time of Adam the year. Bledsoe My brain is flooded with some of my most Originally from Northeast Ohio, Adam Bledsoe moved to Arkansas fond memories, so pardon in 2000 to attend Harding me for jumping all around University after active duty service in the U.S. Air Force. He is on this one (what’s new, married to Dr. Amanda Bledsoe, right?). For me, Thanksand they have two children, Audrey (10) and Hunter (6), who giving time is about so attend Wooster Elementary. much. As an outdoorsAdam is newly employed by man, I enjoy getting out THV11 as a feature reporter, focusing on a variety of feel-good in the woods during the community related stories. hunt. Spending time alone in the woods does a couple things for a person. Sometimes I drive myself crazy reflecting on the many mistakes made in the past, and I often find myself in deep conversation with the Lord confessing how sorry I am. The flip side of that coin is when I’m able to reflect on the many blessings I’ve been given. Another pastime in the deer stand is sleeping. There’s no telling how many amazing deer have passed me up because I was sleeping. When I was new to deer hunting, I would sit there and scan constantly without wavering. The older I get, the more I enjoy a nice nap in my cozy fiberglass deer stand. But in all seriousness, that time alone gives me an opportunity to reflect upon for what I should be grateful. Most times, it’s easy to look at the material blessings and be grateful. However, I believe it’s extremely important to be thankful for the intangible things given to us as well. My wife and I have been blessed beyond imagination in so many ways. Interestingly enough, there have been some hiccups and road bumps in the past few months which had us scratching our heads and wondering what we were to take away from those moments. We literally asked each other what He was trying to show us. What was the takeaway? Our relationship grew in great depth during each trial. One weekend we spent an evening in the emergency room (all is well and good) with no cell phones or children. All we had was each other. It forced us to sit quietly with each other and wonder if God was trying to get our attention. It has worked during each stressful moment. Many of you can agree, as a nation we are more blessed than we’ll ever know. We are blessed to live in a wonderful area code. We are blessed to have modern conveniences. You often forget how good you’ve got it once you lose it. I dislike it when the power goes out,

but what about running water? NOT OK! Thanks to those who keep our power on, our water flowing, our roads in tip-top shape. Thanks to the men and women who serve in the greatest military in the free world. Thanks to every firefighter, police officer, paramedic, teacher, nurse, doctor, restaurant employee, furniture maker, motor home manufacturer, landfill employee, farmer, and the list goes on. Now is the time to sit back and reflect on how good you have it. Going through some struggles right now?

Ask yourself what He is trying to show you. What is your take-away from this trial and tribulation? Get outside and enjoy the beautiful weather. Defeat your depression that has you held captive and keeps you locked in your house. I understand your feeling. I spent an entire Thanksgiving Day by myself once because of a situation such as this. Never again. Remember nobody controls your happiness but you. Don’t forget...I love you. Have the best day of your life!


Dazzle Daze Committee members: Lauren Allen (seated, from left), Brittany Butler, co-chairs Shelia Isby and MissE Newton, Alicia Langston, Amelia Day; Beth Fahr (middle row), Courtney Reynolds, Dot Welch, Mollie Long, Marla Hambuchen, Stefani Vann, Amanda Horton, Janie Childress; Dallas Gosa (back), Lori Ross and Laura Fehr. Not pictured: Aimee Prince, Brandi Keith, Donna Evans, Ginny Hogue, Grace Rains, Heather Shaw, Janet Criswell, Jay Gamble, Jen Moix, Joanna Nabholz, Jodi Strasner, Kathy Bright, Kiera Oluokun, Lisa Bernardini, Liz Hamilton, Melanie Crnic, Michele Freyaldenhoven, Michelle Phillips, Pam Sims, Shelby Roofener, Sonja Keith, Stephanie Mulkerins, Sue Dablock and Valari Bristol. (Donna Evans photo)

Holiday market Dazzle Daze co-chairs excited about updates 40 | 501 LIFE November 2019

This year’s Dazzle Daze will have a new look and feature some major changes. Dazzle Daze co-chairs Shelia Isby and MissE Newton are leading efforts to plan the event and help raise funds to help purchase the latest in 3D mammography equipment, improving screening and diagnostic results for women from all walks of life. Shelia and MissE are members of the Conway Regional Women’s Council, which is planning the 18th Annual Dazzle Daze on Thursday, Nov. 21, through Saturday, Nov. 23, at the Conway Expo Center and Fairgrounds. Since its inception, Dazzle Daze has raised more than $760,000, which has been used to purchase equipment at Conway Regional Medical Center, fund scholarships, patient and community programs and provide teacher grants. “We are creating a holiday market atmosphere,” said MissE, adding that the event’s layout and décor will reflect the new theme. “We have also included an Ultimate Girls’ Night Out ticket and have made changes to our grand raffle with 10 chances to win fabulous prizes. I am very excited about the changes to Dazzle Daze this year.” Shelia has been on the women’s council for 18 years and is the only original member from the founding group. “Dazzle Daze is important to me because it’s an event that supports women’s health and health in our community through Conway Regional Health System,” said Shelia. “It provides a network for women to meet, volunteer, shop and form everlasting


Dazzle Daze co-chairs MissE Newton and Shelia Isby. friendships all while supporting a great cause.” MissE has served on the women’s council for about eight years. “I began working on Dazzle Daze by volunteering to help a friend at the event. I loved it and the women who pull it together, so I joined the Dazzle Daze committee the next year,” MissE said. Both have put in many hours, along with the Dazzle Daze Committee, to plan this year’s event.

Theme: A Holiday Market

Ultimate Girls’ Nite Out ticket

Expanded Grand Raffle

Dazzle Daze T-shirts

“Dazzle Daze provides an awesome shopping event for the community and surrounding areas,” said Shelia. While it will look different this year, raising money to help meet health care needs remains at the heart of the event. “Dazzle Daze is important to me because it is an exciting event that funds health care needs in our community, such as 3D mammography,” said MissE.

GIRLS’ NITE OUT Dazzle Daze will kick off with early bird shopping at Girls’ Nite Out from 6 to 9 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 21. “Girls’ Nite Out is a fun-filled evening for ladies to get together and shop with their friends and share fellowship,” said Shelia.

501 LIFE is a Dazzle Daze Presenting Sponsor, and the sponsor for Girls’ Nite Out. The evening will include free food, door prizes and an opportunity to get the first peek at the items offered by the 80-plus merchants in the juried show. 501 LIFE will serve a signature dessert from Julie’s Sweet Shoppe. The first 500 in the door will receive a SWAG bag with special items ranging from cosmetics and coffee to jewelry and potpourri. This year, Sissy’s Log Cabin is providing a $50 gift card for each bag. To see SWAG bag items, check out the women’s council Facebook page beginning Friday, Nov. 1. Also at Girls’ Nite Out, Conway Women’s Med Spa is donating $10,000 in gifts and prizes (must be present to win). Courtney Utley will be on hand to take girlfriend photos. New this year is the Ultimate Girls’ Nite Out ticket, which includes early admission through a VIP entrance and a reserved SWAG bag. “There is no need to wait in line,” said Shelia. Ultimate ticketholders will also get an exclusive gift, a reserved coupon book and 12 Reindeer Raffle tickets for a chance to win prizes valued at $250 and more. The Ultimate ticket, which is $100 with only 100 sold, can also be used to shop all weekend. Ultimate ticket-holders will be entered into a November 2019 | 41

special drawing for a chance to win jewelry donated by Sissy’s Log Cabin. Tickets may also be purchased for $10 each. Regular Girls’ Nite Out tickets are $30 online and $40 at the door. Girls’ Nite Out tickets and other prizes will be given away to the winner of the Dazzle Diva contest to be held through Tuesday, Nov. 5. To enter, visit the Conway Regional Women’s Council Facebook page.

GRAND RAFFLE This year’s Dazzle Daze Grand Raffle has a new look. “This year, we are offering new and different prizes, with something for everyone,” said MissE. “Plus, there are more opportunities to win,” added Shelia. Tickets are $100 each and only 500 will be sold. The prizes include: • Grand Prize: A 14 Kt. yellow gold diamond tennis bracelet set with 5 carat total weight. Retail value: $9,000. From Lee Ann’s Fine Jewelry • Second: A Spartan RT Pro 54” Zero Turn Mower from Moix ETC • Third: Winner’s choice travel package – Costa Rica, Walt Disney World or Sonoma Wine tour, compliments of the Women’s Council • Fourth: Louis Vuitton package from Braswell & Son • Fifth: Traeger Wood-Fired Grill from Moix ETC • Sixth – 10th: $200 cash Raffle tickets are available now at the Conway Regional Health Foundation, Conway Regional Health and Fitness Center, 501 LIFE office at 701 Chestnut St. in Downtown Conway, H3 Home+Décor, Michelle Phillips CPA, First Security Bank (Old Morrilton Highway, East Oak and Greenbrier), Lee Ann’s Fine Jewelry, H + N Architects, Smith Family Pharmacy, Smith Ford, United Way, Farris Agency, Med+Care Pharmacy, Cajun Brothers, Model Laundry, Amity Rd. Pharmacy, Daisy-A-Day Florist in Greenbrier, First Service Bank in Greenbrier, Harwell Designs in Vilonia and La-Z-Boy Furniture Gallery in Little Rock.

REINDEER RAFFLE Prizes valued at $250 and more will be given away as part of the Reindeer Raffle held during Dazzle Daze. Tickets are $5 for three tickets. The purchaser decides which drawings to

enter. Some of the prizes to be given away include a chair donated by H3, a camping package, Downtown Conway gift certificates, dinner for eight donated by Jill McCollum, a Teal Grill package for 50 and a Fairfield Bay getaway. The drawings will be held at 3:45 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 23, at the conclusion of Dazzle Daze. Winners need not be present to win.

TICKETS Other activities planned at Dazzle Daze include a Teddy Bear Clinic for children and photos with Santa, taken by photographer Courtney Reynolds. Dazzle Daze tickets are $30 online/$40 at the door for Girls’ Nite Out; $7.50 online /$10 at the door for general admission. For more information, visit

INVITATION Shelia and MissE are extending a special invitation to those in the 501 to attend Dazzle Daze. “Dazzle Daze provides a fun, shopping opportunity but more importantly it allows women and residents in the community and surrounding area an opportunity to support the overall wellness of women through Conway Regional Health System,” said Shelia. “The Women’s Council and the Dazzle Daze Committee are champions for this cause.”

Rebuilding the Lives of Central Arkansas's Children and Families The state's only complete continuum of care for children who are abandoned, abused, neglected or struggling with psychiatric, behavioral, emotional and spiritual issues. Find healing, hope and stability for your child and family at Methodist Family Health.

Central Arkansas Locations: Benton Heber Springs Hot Springs Little Rock

Maumelle Searcy Van Buren County Vilonia

Contact Us 501-661-0720 42 | 501 LIFE November 2019

Services Include:

Methodist Behavioral Hospital, the state's ONLY nonprofit behavioral hospital for children An emergency shelter Arkansas Center for Addictions Research, Education and Services (Arkansas CARES) Kaleidoscope Grief Center Two psychiatric residential treatment facilities Two therapeutic day treatment programs Eight therapeutic group homes Eight outpatient counseling clinics Nine school- and community-based counseling clinics


The shape of my heart There is no greater tragedy than living a life that appears to be so full and yet you are all alone. My husband and I recently watched a documentary on the life of Prince. It seemed so strange to me that someone so famous could be so lonely. I mean seriously, how does that even happen? It got me to thinking that this occurs a lot more than we probably even realize, regardless of how much fame we have or don’t have. There was a time in my life where I was so lonely and yet constantly surrounded by people. I had a lot of surface friends, people who knew my exterior, but knew the “real me.” I actually believed that was Laurie Green never the way it worked and I always kept people at a safe A Greenbrier native, Laurie is the distance. However, God had completely different wife of Will Green. The two share plans for my life and my friendships, and I have seven children, five grandchildren and a golden retriever named something that no amount of money or fame can Marlo. They own and operate ever buy – authentic friendship! a lawn care business and are Authentic friendships are those people who know members of New Life Church in Greenbrier. Laurie can be every sordid detail about you and they still like you reached at (lol). I have a few women in my life who make sure that my thoughts and actions line up with the word of God. And when it doesn’t, they are quick to pull me aside and remind of the truth and get me back on track. I call them my “iron sharpening iron” friends. I wonder if Prince ever had those kind of people in his life? People who weren’t afraid to say no. People who love you enough to speak Godly truths to you. People with no agenda other than to run this race of life with you, to cheer you on and pick you up when you feel weary. Those are the type of friendships we need in our lives. Those are the people who shape our hearts. As I reminisced on all the seasons and authentic friendships that God has blessed me with, I realized it would be impossible to mention them all, but God gave me such a great idea to honor each of them. Each night before I fall asleep I write down three names of people who have shaped my heart. They are people who have impacted my life for the better, whether they realize it or not, and the next day I text them. Sometimes I get lucky and I actually run into one of them in public and I say how thankful I am for them. It has honestly became a highlight of my day. I encourage you to give it a try! Go ahead, stop reading this for a minute and think of three people who matter to you. Have you got them? Now go call or text

them. People need to know they matter. They need to know they make a difference. They need affirmation. And once you’ve done that just keep going. Think of the next three and then the next and if you get stumped, ask God to remind you of more! Life is but a vapor and it is simply too fast and too hard to go at it alone. I want to encourage you to step out of your comfort zone; find those people who speak truth and keep you grounded in a Godly foundation. People who will pray with you and for you. People who make you the best version of me, they are out there. Lastly, I’d like to thank my tribe of ladies who have made me who I am today. Each of you know EXACTLY who you are and how much you mean to me. Thank you for blessing me with something that can’t ever be bought and is more precious than jewels ... your friendship.

November 2019 | 43


Out of Africa

Foundation brings new hope to Kenyan orphans Hellen Makani, who co-founded Seeds Ministry with her husband, holds a copy of 501 LIFE and was “Loving LIFE” with others in Kitale, Kenya. (Cindy DeRosa photos)

44 | 501 LIFE November 2019

by Dwain Hebda

The well-worn phrase “It takes a village to raise a child,” is credited to an African proverb and speaks to the community’s collective responsibility for the welfare of the children in its midst. It is therefore the height of irony that in many places on the African continent, street children are increasingly abandoned, abused and forgotten, left as outcasts to survive by whatever means necessary. Dr. Mark Cooper has seen this firsthand through his missionary work and nonprofit organization Chicks for Children Foundation. And the plight of these youngsters, the luckiest of whom end up in local orphanages if there is room for them, is what inspires the retired University of Central Arkansas professor to crisscross the globe to support them. “Increasingly, the focus is not so much on orphanage building as it is on community

transformation,” he said. “Community transformation requires a community of people who are more inclined to assume that role and responsibility to raise that village. More and more third world countries are really putting a whole lot more education and emphasis on the concept of ‘It takes a village.’ “The problem with that is, some villages don’t necessarily have people who have assumed roles and responsibilities to raise their village, to transform their community.” Into the breach stepped Seeds Ministries, a local organization in Kenya that sought to provide the orphans with a better life through education, nutrition and other basic elements for a better life. “What happened with Seeds Ministries and [founders] Pastor Richard and Hellen Makani is, they were introduced to a child that they noticed was

Foundation continued on Page 46

Dr. Mark Cooper with some of the children in Kitale.

“Loving LIFE” at the group home in Kitale.

November 2019 | 45

Foundation continued from Page 45 abandoned, was starving,” Cooper said. “They asked the question, ‘Where did this child come from?’” Cooper’s son, Jimmy, paved the way for the rest of the family, having felt a calling to missionary work with Seeds Ministries. Hearing of the conditions and the daily life of the youngsters, Mark and his wife, Linda, felt inexorably pulled to assist Jimmy in the care of the youngsters. “At the time Jimmy went to Kenya they had about 23 orphans,” Mark said. “They also had an academy of a few dozen kids. And so, Mom and Dad become introduced to ‘his children.’” In 2009, Mark and Linda traveled to Kenya for the first time to see Jimmy and his work up close. They came home inspired to help and founded the Chicks for Children Foundation in 2010 as a means to help support the work of Seeds Ministry serving local orphans. “We recognized the need to find a credible way to engage people in providing funding support to grow the capacity for this Seeds Ministry and that’s what we did,” Mark said. The couple’s activism on behalf of “Jimmy’s kids” has accomplished things that stretch the boundaries of possibility including building a medical clinic, greenhouse and arguably the most significant among the capital campaigns, new orphanage housing. “I listened to a video the other day by a person who said, ‘If you want to know what to do, answer the question ‘What breaks your heart?’” Cooper said. “I thought, that explains the orphanage build. It broke my heart to recognize that you had kids, especially girls, who are at Seeds Ministries under the Seeds Ministries umbrella, they were at the academy, they were going to school, they were being medically treated, they had food to eat. But I saw pictures of them, in uniform, standing in front of their trash houses. Broke my heart.” Just as Jimmy’s commitment to the orphans inspired his parents’ participation, so too have the Coopers’ passion for the cause inspired others here at home. Among the more unique events Chicks for Children hosts is the Chicken Dance Marathon fundraiser which started as a partnership between the foundation, a local Chik-fil-A restaurant and the Conway School District. It has since grown into school districts in England, Vilonia, Greenbrier and North Little Rock as well as several districts in Georgia, Colorado and Tennessee. More recently, Mark Cooper developed a curriculum stressing leadership skills, rooted in faith, for which he recruited one of his former UCA students, Cindy DeRosa and her husband, David, to help refine and deliver. The couple accompanied the Coopers to Kenya and were moved by the experience. “There’s one thing that stuck with me, when Dr. Cooper said when we help others and serve others, we become aware of our own strengths,” Cindy said. “So then others become aware of their strengths as well and they become equipped. He has visions of this effort giving back; it’s not like we go and serve these kids and feel sorry for them and bring all kinds of gifts. We don’t do that at all. “His goal is to go and equip them with skills that do not require anything tangible, like actual leadership skills. It ultimately empowers them and they really step up. I was so blessed by witnessing some of these students as someone with so little who could offer so much.” 46 | 501 LIFE November 2019

Chicks for Children Foundation Mission: Our overarching mission is to reduce or eliminate the devastating consequences of physical and psychological poverty characterized by a lack of food, clean water, homelessness, illiteracy, sickness, despair, a lack of purpose, hopelessness, voicelessness, fear, abuse, and social isolation. For more information, visit or call 501.472.5452.

Cindy DeRosa with students.

David DeRosa and Linda Cooper with some of the children.

Linda and Dr. Mark Cooper with a former student.

Dr. Mark Cooper with one of the children in Kitale.

Missionary Jimmy Cooper with students.

Dr. Mark Cooper (left) and David DeRosa prepare for presentation.




UCA student loses ovarian cancer battle

UCA senior Alexis Faupel was diagnosed with germ cell ovarian cancer and died in early September. Story and photos by Daniel Adams

Items placed in front of Alexis Faupel’s room at the University of Central Arkansas.

Ovarian cancer symptoms What happened to UCA student Alexis Faupel was a rarity among ovarian cancer diagnoses. According to the Mayo Clinic, germ cell tumors aren’t common overall but are seen more often in younger women. While this type begins in the egg-producing cells, there are two other primary types of ovarian cancer. Epithelial tumors begin in the tissue covering the ovaries while stromal tumors emerge from the hormoneproducing tissue in the ovaries.

Typically, according to the advanced risks on the Mayo Clinic website, women between ages 50 and 60 are at the most risk of getting ovarian cancers. Those who are undertaking estrogen hormone replacement treatment are also at advanced risk for cancer. Symptoms of any form of ovarian cancer include: • Abdominal bloating and swelling • Quickly feeling full when eating • Weight loss • Pelvic discomfort • Severe changes in bathroom habits Anyone with these symptoms should get checked out by their doctor.

University of Central Arkansas senior Alexis Faupel lost her battle with germ cell ovarian cancer on Sept. 2, after having been diagnosed over the summer. A native of Cabot, Alexis was a kinesiology major who was known for constantly bringing positivity to a room and improving the lives of everyone she met. She’d volunteered with organizations like the UCA Wesley Foundation and the Bryant Methodist Church. Abby Barkhimer, a 2018 UCA graduate, first met Faupel in Texarkana at a camp for Ozark Mission Project (OMP) in 2012. The two were part of the week-long camp where youth went around town and completed projects ranging from wheelchair ramps and painting to house washing for those in need. The two of them got along fantastically and became close friends. “She was kind to everyone regardless of anything,” said Barkhimer. “She spoke the truth and kept it real, even when that meant uncomfortable conversations.” Maggie Rogers, a graduate student who’s also been a member of the Wesley Foundation, called Faupel a comforting presence to have around, no matter how things were in life. “She was one of those people that was definitely life-giving, not life-draining.” Following her funeral service, Faupel’s body was donated to the Memphis-based Genesis Legacy Whole Body Foundation for research. In lieu of flowers, the family asked that donations be made to the Wesley Foundation and Ozark Mission Project through the Cabot Methodist Church. Donations are still being accepted. For those who wish to help the family directly, a GoFundMe has been created to provide money to help the Faupels handle the medical bills from their daughter’s time in the hospital. The goal is $100,000. To help, go to and search for Alexis Faupel. November 2019 | 47


Unity Health – White County Medical re-designated Level III Trauma Center The Arkansas Department of Health has re-designated Unity Health – White County Medical Center as a Level III Trauma Center as part of the statewide trauma system. Unity Health RN and Trauma Program Manager Margaret Duggan said the designation as a Trauma Center by the state demonstrates to the community Unity Health’s commitment to meet defined trauma standards set by the trauma section at the ADH. “We have demonstrated to the ADH we continue to be appropriately equipped and trained to care for, stabilize and determine if transfer of the trauma patient to another facility for a higher level of care is required,” Duggan said. “Specific certifications and training are required and must be current by all ED physicians and nursing staff in order to keep our Level III designation. Being located in a rural area, knowing their own community hospital has the equipment and the trained professionals to provide the care a loved one may need in a trauma situation gives peace of mind.” Trauma Level re-designation occurs every three years by the Trauma Section at the Arkansas Department of Health (ADH). Evaluators survey and review the facility to make sure Emergency Departments are following correct protocols and meeting specific standards. “The re-designation is important for our community because if we are taking care of our patients the correct way, they have the best chances of survival, health

and healing,” LPN, Trauma Program Registrar Jasper Fultz said. “Everyone plays a role in taking care of trauma patients from the nurses, physicians and surgeons to lab and X-ray technicians.” Unity Health first applied to become part of the Arkansas Trauma System in 2012, becoming the first hospital to receive a Level III designation in the NorthCentral region of the state at the time. With the re-designation, Unity Health will continue to provide definitive care for emergencies and stabilize those who may need transportation to a Level I or Level II Trauma Center. For more information about the Arkansas Trauma System and the designation process, visit

UCA School of Nursing awards scholarships The University of Central Arkansas School of Nursing recently announced the award of undergraduate and graduate scholarships for the 2019-20 academic year, as well as the 2019 excellence awards. Scholarship recipients: Ashcraft Nursing Scholarship – Suleima Gomez of Belleville. This scholarship is for current UCA BSN Level III students from an underrepresented minority (racial, ethnic, and/or gender) in good academic standing. Crystal V. Crawford Nursing Scholarship – Emma French of Vilonia. This scholarship endowment was established by Chris and Kim Fowler in honor of their daughter, Crystal V. Crawford, for the purpose of providing scholarship aid to nursing students at UCA. Clara M. Forsberg Nursing Scholarship – Madison Pierce of Jonesboro. This scholarship endowment was established by the estate of Dr. Carl and Mrs. Clara Forsberg. Mrs. Forsberg was a faculty member in the School of Nursing when the program was first established. Suzanne Harvey Graduate Nursing Scholarship – Haley Hooper of Conway. This scholarship endowment was established by Suzanne Harvey’s husband, Dr. David Harvey, and the family of Mrs. Harvey in her memory. She was a graduate of UCA’s 48 | 501 LIFE November 2019

first nurse practitioner class and practiced for a number of years as a nurse practitioner before her death. Linda Vail Holbert Scholarship – Amelia Wright of Greenbrier. The scholarship is for a junior or senior nursing student enrolled full time in required nursing courses and in good academic standing. Lauretta Koenigseder Nursing Scholarship – Lauren Trickey of Conway. The scholarship is for a junior or senior nursing student who is enrolled full time in required nursing courses, in good academic standing and who demonstrates quality nursing care and professionalism. Betty Martin Nursing Scholarship – Savannah Riddell of Conway. This scholarship was established in memory of Dr. Betty Martin, who was chair of UCA School of Nursing for a number of years. Excellence award recipients: Undergraduate Clinical Excellence Award – Ashley Mezel of Sherwood. Undergraduate Academic Excellence Award – Sara Chavis-Howard and Rachel Basham, both of Maumelle. Outstanding DNP Student Award – Sarah Williams of Benton. Outstanding Undergraduate Student Award – Kaitlin Johnson of Bryant.


Say ‘yes to the best’

Susan Isom Susan Isom has acquired considerable experience in the world of skin care and has received numerous awards and special recognition during her career. She has deservedly earned an excellent reputation in Arkansas for her skincare expertise. She writes monthly skincare articles for state and local publications. Consultations and assessments are conducted in the privacy of her beautiful facility in a relaxed, congenial atmosphere. She partners with cosmetic surgeon Dr. Michael Devlin of Little Rock.

Botox injections remain the most popular nonsurgical cosmetic procedure in the United States. What a decade ago seemed scary and taboo — needles filled with botulinum toxin being prodded into wrinkleprone facial areas — is now widely accepted, and sometimes considered part of one’s beauty ritual. With that growing comfort and popularity comes the expected jump onto the bandwagon, with an overwhelming number of practitioners now offering Botox.

Compare prices, but don’t shop by price alone

This isn’t the time for a Groupon. We receive many calls asking to compare our prices to those offering a deal on Botox, but most have circled back as soon as they realize there is a difference — in placement, longevity and skill. Millimeters make a difference. As a master injector, I look at the shape of a patient’s eye and eyebrow, for example, and match dosage and dilution for the desired effect. I may inject a 55-year-old woman’s forehead differently than a woman in her early 30s. It’s fine to price-shop to some extent, but know that sometimes you’ll pay more for injections administered by more experienced practitioners. Botox treatments may be advertised for $250. But be wary of a price that sounds too low. You should expect to pay at least $400 an area for a seasoned injector.

Compare units and understand your number Most practitioners price Botox by the unit, meaning the number of units of botulinum toxin needed per area. Typically, the area between the eyebrows requires around 20-25 units, while horizontal forehead lines average between 14 and 18 and crow’s-feet 9 to 12 per eye. These are just guidelines, and one should ask questions about the amounts he or she tends to use. In general, the greater the amount, the more chance you could end up with a frozen forehead. Botox and similar neurotoxins, including Dysport and Xeomin, can be administered in a lighter or more aggressive dosing so talk with your injector about the look you want. Most of my clientele want a less aggressive approach. Smaller amounts of strategically placed Botox deliver the best results, in my experience. A “new approach” of administrating Botox is called Baby Botox. It’s a technique using microinjections of product, so we can eliminate fine lines yet retain some muscle movement. Remember that a good injector will keep your unit numbers on file for a future visit, so you can discuss whether you felt the amount was too much or not enough for your desired look. There’s no such thing as one size fits all when it comes to Botox, which is why understanding injection quantities can make you a more educated consumer. The longevity of Botox can also vary depending on who does the injections. Some practitioners, typically those offering too-good-to-be-true deals, tend to water down Botox more than a reputable injector will. There are guidelines to how many cc’s of saline should be used to dilute the toxin, which is standard procedure, but some injectors add a bit more to increase the number of injections they can get per vial. Unfortunately, patients won’t know if they’ve received over-diluted shots until the Botox

Beauty continued on Page 70 November 2019 | 49


A common enemy

Luncheon honors women battling breast cancer by Taryn Brown

For the last 25 years, Unity Health has celebrated women who have battled breast cancer and overcome, as well as those who are currently battling, at the annual Barbara Montgomery Memorial Breast Cancer Awareness Luncheon. The luncheon is named in honor of former Unity Health President/CEO Ray Montgomery’s wife, who lost her battle with breast cancer. Survivor Photo 2005

2013 survivor guest speaker Phyllis Wallace (from left), THV 11’s Dawn Scott, Dr. Whit Robertson and Dr. Ryan Koch. Survivor Photo 2012

Survivor Photo 2016

Survivor Photo 2018 50 | 501 LIFE November 2019

Survivor guest speaker, Kathy LaFerney (third from left) with her family at the 2017 luncheon.

Unity Health oncologist Dr. Ryan Koch and then-President/CEO Ray Montgomery at the 2018 Breast Cancer Luncheon.

Each year the hospital invites a guest emcee, a guest speaker to speak over breast cancer education or advancements in treatment and a survivor to share their story. Past years have included emcee Erin Hawley and Elicia Dover from KATV Channel 7, Unity Health oncologists Dr. Ryan Koch, Dr. Stacie McCord and Dr. Whit Robertson, dieticians and survivors from the community. During the luncheon, survivors, current patients battling breast cancer and those who have lost their battle with the disease are recognized and honored for their strength. Women are able to share their experiences, lift each other up and celebrate with a community of supporters. “I am honored to plan the luncheon every year to remember, celebrate and honor so many amazing women who have been impacted by this disease,” Unity Health Marketing Coordinator Anna Brumfield said. “Breast cancer impacts us all in different ways but it is a common enemy we all have. These women inspire us all by their strength, courage and faith, and I have personally been blessed to develop wonderful friendships and gain role models through this special event.” The 25th annual luncheon was the first year breast cancer survivors were encouraged to write letters to those currently battling the disease and receiving treatment for any type of cancer at the Unity Health – White County Oncology clinic. The Pyeatt Family Cancer Center in Searcy includes the White County Oncology, CARTI and Radiology Associates, P.A. (RAPA) all at one location. The collaboration between all three clinics and being a member of the Mayo Clinic Care Network allows patients to feel confident they are receiving the highest standard of care, and appointment scheduling is streamlined. White County Oncology recently added Breast Cancer Navigator Lisa Hill, RN to the team. Hill’s role as Clinical Breast Cancer Navigator is to guide and support patients through the challenges of cancer. She is trained in providing resources and education to assist patients in making informed decisions throughout their diagnosis and treatment. She also works with the healthcare team to promote health and quality outcomes. Hill works side by side with a patients’ physician to ensure quality and timely care. She is also a guide for patients in connecting them with other providers in areas including dieticians, counselors and financial aid counselors. According to the National Breast Cancer Foundation, one in eight women in the U.S. will be diagnosed with the disease in her lifetime. The Breast Cancer Research Foundation said it is estimated 271,270 new cases of invasive breast cancer will occur in women in the U.S. in 2019, and there are more than 3.5 million breast cancer survivors alive in the nation today. Women ages 40 to 54 should receive mammograms annually. The 26th Annual Barbara Montgomery Memorial Breast Cancer Awareness Luncheon was held Oct. 18 at the White County Extension Building Conference Center in Searcy.

For more information about cancer services, please call White County Oncology at 501.278.3297. For more information concerning breast cancer, visit November 2019 | 51



Glad tidings we bring 52 | 501 LIFE November 2019

Ginger and Raisin Scones are perfect during the holidays. (Mike Kemp photos)

With Thanksgiving and Christmas around the corner, it’s time for baking and trimming trees, hauling out the holly and decking the halls. It’s a time of reflection and enjoying the truly important things in life. The more Thanksgiving and Christmas seasons we experience, the more precious each one Don becomes as we celebrate Bingham with family and friends Recognized throughout the those traditions we count state as an accomplished as most dear to our hearts. chef, Don Bingham has authored cookbooks, How many Christmas presented television and Thanksgiving seasons programs and planned elaborate events. can you remember? I think I can recall these amazingly colorful seasons of the year from about age 5 or 6. This means I can remember a lot of different holiday seasons and the changes from cedar-sprayed Christmas trees and silver tinsel on rotating stands to current days of barn board and elegant country décor. With each change in styles, one constant has remained – it’s the most wonderful time of the year! I’ve been looking at the various songs that were sung around the occasion of the birth of the Christ Child. There were several, beginning with

Zachariah, then Mary’s song, the heavenly hosts and even Simeon’s joy in beholding the promised Messiah. All are beautiful and hold such meaning for many of us. There’s music at every turn during the holidays. Songs range from reflective to joyous, from change in our seasons of life to the prospect of new life and “baby’s first Christmas.” We’ve decided to return to the tradition of hanging stockings this year. We have purchased 12 of them – one for each grandchild. Progress is slow at the moment in the movement toward filling them with countless little treasures, but we will fan the flame of enthusiasm in the near future. Cooler weather would help bring on inspiration, I’m quite sure. Methinks that in the retirement years, we are afforded the gift of having seen the seasons come and go, and people and events come and go. Yet, one thing is really necessary and that’s diligent goals to build in times to be quiet, reflect, be grateful and meditate. We can then express our thanksgiving and gratitude to family and friends and celebrate “unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given – and the government will be upon His shoulders.” How quietening and reassuring are these pearls of scripture to our hearts. I think we will need some holiday cheer throughout the coming days, when we sit long enough to enjoy some of the delicacies of the November and December days. Let’s consider baking

some Ginger and Raisin Scones. Place most of them in the freezer and have them ready to pull out at a moment’s notice. I also re-discovered this wonderful eggnog dessert that one must be seated in rich reverence to be able to enjoy; and a recipe for chocolate truffles that we have had in our collection for years. Something old, something new – like the rest of us. Happy Thanksgiving!

CREAMY CHOCOLATE TRUFFLES 1 1/2 cups heavy cream 7 ounces bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped Powdered unsweetened cocoa, cinnamon, grated chocolate or ground nuts (for rolling) In a large, heavy saucepan, bring the cream to a boil over moderately low heat. Boil, stirring constantly (about 10 minutes) until reduced by half to 3/4 cup. Remove from the heat and add the chocolate. Stir until smooth. Scrape into a shallow container and refrigerate, uncovered, until firm, about 4 to 5 hours. For each truffle, form about 2 teaspoons of the cold chocolate mixture into a rough ball. Roll the truffles in the coating of your choice and refrigerate, covered, until ready to serve. They keep in the refrigerator for up to three weeks or may be frozen for several months. The creamy truffles may be rolled in powdered cocoa, cinnamon, grated chocolate or nuts. They are best made with top-quality chocolate. For a special treat, serve them with coffee and brandy. Makes about 2 dozen.



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November 2019 | 53

Meringue – In the top of a double boiler, whisk together egg whites and sugar. Cook, whisking constantly over simmering water until a candy thermometer registers 140 degrees. Remove from heat. Pour mixture into the work bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Beat at high speed until thick, white and fluffy, about 10 minutes. Use immediately.


BOURBON MOLASSES EGGNOG WITH TORCHED MERINGUE 4 cups refrigerated eggnog 1 1/3 cups heavy whipping cream 1/2 cup bourbon 1/4 cup molasses Meringue Garnish: Molasses For meringue: 4 egg whites 1 cup sugar In a large bowl, stir together eggnog, cream, bourbon and molasses. Cover and refrigerate for at least four hours. Makes 4 to 6 servings. To serve, pour eggnog mixture into 4-6 serving glasses. Top with desired amount of meringue. Brown meringue with a culinary torch and drizzle with molasses, if desired. Serve immediately.

54 | 501 LIFE November 2019

2 cups all-purpose flour 1/4 cup sugar 2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder 2 teaspoons ground ginger 1/2 teaspoon salt 4 tablespoons cold butter, cut into pieces 1/2 cup golden raisins 1/4 cup finely chopped candied ginger (optional) 1/2 cup plus 4 tablespoons cold heavy whipping cream, divided 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract 1 tablespoon sparkling sugar Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking powder, ground ginger and salt. Whisk well. Using a pastry blender or two forks, cut in butter until mixture is crumbly. Add raisins and candied ginger, stirring to incorporate. In a measuring cup, combine 1/2 cup plus 3 tablespoons of cream and vanilla extract, stirring to blend. Add to flour mixture, stirring to combine. Working gently, bring mixture together with hands to form dough. If dough seems dry, add more cream, 1 tablespoon at a time, until dough is uniformly moist. On a lightly floured surface, knead dough four to five times. Roll dough to a 1-inch thickness. Using a pastry knife, cut round into 12 wedges. Place scones 2 inches apart on prepared baking sheet. Brush tops of scones with remaining 1 tablespoon cream. Sprinkle with sparkling sugar. Bake until edges of scones are golden and a wooden pick comes out clean, about 15-20 minutes. Serve warm. Store at room temperature for up to three days. Makes about 12.





Even the antique chair in the corner is given a pop of autumn color, from the nubby, fringed throw to the old basket filled with gourds, leaves and pumpkins. (Mike Kemp photos)

November 2019 | 55

Piles of pumpkins fill a cherished creme bowl on the coffee table in the den. A hound’s-tooth print scarf does double duty as a fall runner.

56 | 501 LIFE November 2019

Julianne Milner A self-taught baker, Julianne Milner is a caterer, seasonal stylist and owner of Julianne’s Southern Table. She can be reached at

When the summer humidity finally gives way to autumn’s cooler temperatures and short days, I delight in the simple pleasures of home. I switch linen fabrics for velvets, cottons for wool, and store the brightly colored items – replacing them with the warm, cozy tones that are abundant this season. Those close to me know that I start burning fall candles mid-August. I can’t help myself. There’s nothing I love more than decorating my house for fall. I wanted to share with 501 LIFE readers some simple things you can do to warm up your home this

season. • Place a warm, lofty throw across a chair arm or sofa. • Buy a heavier comforter for your bed and place a throw across the foot of the bed. • Burn a fall candle. • Pull out a few of your favorite vessels and add gourds, berries, feathers, etc. to place on your tabletop and mantel. • Put a runner or quilt on your dining table. • Remove your summer floor coverings and replace with a textured or shag rug. • Metallic decor radiates light. Replace a few of your regular pieces with bronze or gold pieces. • Pile up some fiery orange pumpkins and mums by your front door to welcome guests. Encourage loved ones to gather at your home this fall by doing some of the above ideas to cozy it up! After you have warmed your house up, I encourage you to try some wonderful fall soups, stews and desserts. Being a baker, I enjoy the fall recipes most of all, with their cinnamon, nutmeg and allspice. I’m including one of my very favorite fall recipes that I hope you will try! I came across this Cinnamon Apple Cake recipe many years ago and it has been one of my family’s favorites ever since. The cream cheese in this batter gives the cake lots of moisture. Because it’s so tender, use a serrated knife for cutting. This cake is wonderful paired with a hot cup of coffee.

Cinnamon Apple Cake is a family favorite.

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CINNAMON APPLE CAKE 1 3/4 cups sugar, DIVIDED 1/2 cup butter (room temperature) 1 teaspoons vanilla extract 6 ounces block-style cream cheese (room temperature) 2 large eggs 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour 1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder 1/4 teaspoon salt 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon 3 cups (about 2 large) Rome apples, peeled and chopped (Braeburn or Jonathan apples can be substituted if needed)

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Cinnamon continued from Page 57 Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Beat 1 1/2 cups sugar, butter, vanilla and cream cheese at medium speed of a mixer until well blended (about 4 minutes). Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Combine flour, baking powder and salt. Add flour mixture to creamed mixture, beating at a low speed until blended. Combine 1/4 cup sugar and cinnamon. Combine 2 tablespoons cinnamon mixture and chopped apples in a bowl and stir apple mixture into batter. Pour batter into an 8-inch springform pan coated with cooking spray, and sprinkle with remaining cinnamon mixture. Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour and 15 minutes or until cake pulls away from the sides of the pan. Cool the cake completely on a wire rack, and cut using a serrated knife. Yield: 12 servings.

SKILLET S’MORES 6 (1.55 ounce) individually wrapped Hershey’s chocolate bars, broken into 12 pieces 1 (10 ounce) bag miniature marshmallows Graham crackers or Graham sticks Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In 12 small cast iron skillets, place six chocolate pieces, and top each with a small handful of marshmallows. Bake for 5 to 7 minutes or until chocolate is melted and marshmallows are toasted. Serve on a heatproof tray with graham crackers. Makes 12 servings. Whether you’re hosting a dinner party of eight, sharing a coffee with your best friend, or serving individual s’mores after the home game, I wish you a rewarding autumn season filled with laughter and love, and a big dash of cinnamon!

58 | 501 LIFE November 2019

Guests love having their own s’more skillet.

November 2019 | 59


Enjoy an energy-efficient Thanksgiving Cooler temperatures and the return of pumpkin spice everything means fall has officially arrived. And with Thanksgiving just weeks away, it’s also the start of holiday gatherings. Surprisingly, Thanksgiving takes a lot of energy. Between cooking meals, watching football Beth and Black Friday shopping online, Americans Jimmerson consume a lot of power A long-time Conway resident, Beth McCullough Jimmerson is over the holiday. the manager for marketing and A few minor changes communications for Conway Corp. She has a bachelor’s degree can save you from an from the University of Central increased energy bill so Arkansas and a master’s degree from the University of Arkansas. you can stay focused on She can be reached at beth. amazing food and good times with loved ones. Use these five simple tips to keep your Thanksgiving energy efficient:

MAXIMIZE OVEN USE Most of the action takes place in the kitchen on Thanksgiving. That’s why it’s so important to use your oven efficiently. Set a timer, keep the oven door closed and cook multiple dishes at once. Use glass and ceramic baking dishes – they retain heat better than metal and allow you to reduce the oven temperature by 25 degrees. Avoid preheating your oven. Turkeys are traditionally stuffed in the morning and roasted for hours. Since it’s a long and slow process, there’s no need to preheat your oven. This also holds true for a holiday ham. It might take a few minutes longer to cook, but it’s a great way to cut costs because your oven won’t be wasting energy while it’s empty.

LOWER THE THERMOSTAT With all the action going on inside the kitchen, the rest of the house will reap some benefits. Cooking and conversation will heat up fast so go ahead and turn the heat down a few degrees. The heat from the oven and extra people in your home will heat up 60 | 501 LIFE November 2019

the other rooms. Your guests will still be comfortable while you keep your heating costs to a minimum.

CLEAN SMART Dishwashers require 37 percent less water than washing dishes by hand. When dinner is done and everyone is resting in the living room, the kitchen is full of dirty dishes. Skip handwashing and use the dishwasher instead. Dishwashers require 37 percent less water than washing dishes by hand. Scrape off plates into the garbage can instead of rinsing and make sure the dishwasher is full. Allow dishes to air dry rather than using the heat-dry cycle to save even more. Turning off the heat-dry cycle can save more than $40 a year if you run one load a day.

MIND YOUR LEFTOVERS The second best part of Thanksgiving is the leftovers you eat the next day. Store leftovers in glass, reusable containers. Before you put them in the fridge, let them cool completely. Putting warm food in a fridge affects its resting temperature causing it to work harder to reach the ideal cool temperature. When you’re ready for round two, use a microwave. Microwave ovens are fast and efficient. They use 50 percent less energy than conventional ovens. Plus, they won’t heat up your kitchen. If you’re rewarming food on the stove, make sure to match the size of the pan to the heating element so more heat will get to the pan and less will be lost to the surrounding air. Believe it or not, a six-inch-pan on an eight-inch burner will waste more than 40 percent of the energy used.

Give Thanks

GET ENERGY SMART Saving energy is a habit you should practice all year long, and the holidays are a great time to start. Just simply being aware of your energy usage can help you save energy and money. Conway Corp’s Energy Smart program was designed to help you balance increasing demands for electricity with our commitment to providing affordable rates. Conway Corp offers free residential energy audits to help you identify how much energy your home consumes and how to make your home more energy efficient. Annually, homes that have received a free audit from Energy Smart save $148,000 combined in utility costs. Over the lifetime of the program, these homes have saved more than $2.6 million. To schedule a free energy audit or to learn more ways to conserve energy, contact Conway Corp at 501.450.6000 or visit

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501 kids

Remembering why we celebrate

Kellie Bishop Kellie Bishop is a pediatric nurse practitioner at Central Arkansas Pediatrics in Conway. She lives in Plumerville with her husband, Greg, their son and two dogs. She obtained her bachelor’s degree in nursing at the University of Central Arkansas and her master’s and doctorate degrees in pediatric primary care at UAMS.

Turkey, dressing, sweet potatoes, cranberries, family, friends, football and Black Friday are just a few of the things we tend to associate with Thanksgiving. Kids anticipate a few days off from school while enjoying good food with family and friends. The roads are filled with people travelling to be with loved ones for the holiday that kicks off the holiday season. In the midst of all the travelling, cooking and shopping, how often do we stop and appreciate our blessings the way that was intended on this holiday? How many of us take the time to make

62 | 501 LIFE November 2019

sure our children understand that the holiday is about much more than just a long weekend and a big meal with family? It is important for us to remember the real meaning of holidays as we celebrate them. As we approach Thanksgiving this year, let’s take a few minutes to remember why we celebrate this holiday. The Pilgrims came to the New World on the Mayflower in 1620 seeking religious freedom from the King of England. Upon landing in Plymouth, they had a long, cold winter with little food or shelter. However, they befriended the Native Americans who lived in the region, and the Native Americans helped them survive. Although many Pilgrims did not survive the first year, those who did had plentiful fall harvests of crops grown from plants and seeds gifted to them by the Native Americans. The Pilgrims wanted to celebrate the blessings they had been given so they had a large, three-day feast and invited the Native Americans who helped them to enjoy the food they helped harvest. That feast is now known as the first Thanksgiving and has remained an important tradition that we celebrate each November in the United States. It isn’t important for us to remember the story of Thanksgiving, just to know the history of the holiday.

It is important to teach our children the real meaning behind the holiday and open up the discussion about why it is important. There are many lessons we can teach our kids from the Thanksgiving story. In a world in which kids are accustomed to instant gratification, the story of the first Thanksgiving teaches the importance of hard work, perseverance and team work to accomplish great things. Additionally, we now live in a culture that tends to emphasize the differences among us and use those differences to generate tension. However, the story of the first Thanksgiving is a good reminder for all of us, and a great lesson for our children, about the growth that can happen when we come together as friends and help one another despite our differences. Finally, the concept of being thankful for our blessings and taking the time to give thanks for those blessings is a vital lesson to make sure children understand and practice. Thanksgiving marks the beginning of the holiday season, bringing with it a great deal of travel, shopping, gatherings and joy. This year, I hope we all remember the story of the first Thanksgiving, teach our children the story and the importance of it, and stay safe. May you all have a very happy Thanksgiving!


KID OF THE MONTH Sophia Mireles AGE: 5. CITY: Conway. SCHOOL: Pre-K at the University of Central Arkansas Child Study Center. FAVORITE SUBJECT: Art. FAMILY: Parents, Gaby and Alfredo; and siblings Felix and Emma. FAVORITE MEAL OR SNACK: Pizza. MOST CHERISHED POSSESSION: Soccer ball and gear.

November 2019 | 63


501 kids

Fall and holiday sensory creations

Brittany Gilbert Brittany Gilbert is a former FACS teacher at Maumelle High School. She and her husband, Levi, have three children and live in Conway. Brittany can be reached at

I’ve always loved sensory bins. The variety of materials and the creative play that is attached to this type of activity captivates me as well as my children. Sensory bins are most commonly some sort of plastic tub that has different materials or objects that stimulate the senses. This simple idea leaves so much room for a kid’s imagination to soar. Kids learn so much better when they can touch and feel things, and sensory play is so beneficial. There are several ways to create sensory bins. You can use shredded paper, rocks, sand, small

figures, beads, water, etc. Here are some really fun fall- and holiday-themed sensory bin ideas that you can create at home.


a really colorful sensory experience. To dye rice, place a few tablespoons of vinegar along with food coloring and a couple cups of rice in a Ziploc bag. Swish it around until the rice is

saturated with color and then dump on to foil to dry for a couple of hours. Repeat with other colors. Unlike playdough and sand, rice isn’t moldable, but it’s still a valuable sensory opportunity. Use empty paper towel and toilet paper holders with funnels and create tunnels that the rice runs through. Hide dinosaurs, puzzle pieces or cars in the rice, or just let them get their hands in the rice and play with it. Filling and emptying cups can be really therapeutic, too. Make sure to have a large plastic tub for both sand and rice bins. As you can imagine, both ingredients are easy to get all over the place. Don’t let that deter you from providing this experience to your kids. Sensory bins are excellent for kids with sensory processing disorders, but are also really awesome for everyone. As an adult, I find myself running the ingredients in my hands and feeling relaxed. Get creative with the theme and colors. Like with anything, it’s easy to get bored doing the same thing all the time, so mix up the toys for the bins with the holidays and seasons.


Playdough sensory bins are one of my favorites. Playdough is easy to shape and create so many things. You can stamp objects into the dough, too. Leaves look so pretty when they are stamped in dough. Also, when you use edible dough, you don’t have to worry about constantly cautioning your child to avoid putting it in their mouth. Objects for a fall-themed bin would be fake leaves, pinecones, acorns, twigs, rocks and a fall theme cookie cutter. Let your child use their imagination and go wild with this one. Don’t feel like you have to stick to what I’ve used. Use whatever you can find or whatever you think your kids might enjoy. Also, switch up the colors and themes for the different holidays. Create a Halloween-themed bin or a Christmas one. There are so many possibilities.

SAND Sand sensory bins are really popular. Kinetic sand is one of the most fun sensory experiences. It’s not necessary to use kinetic sand; however, it’s easier to clean up and feels smoother than regular play sand. Cookie cutters, molds, small shovels and cups are great to use with sand. Create a treasure hunt by hiding different small objects in the sand, and then give your children a challenge to find everything. Use construction toy vehicles and hide rocks in the sand to be dug up. The same ingredients you use with the playdough fall bin can be used with sand as well.

RICE Rice is another great product to use for sensory bins. It is easy to dye, so you can create 64 | 501 LIFE November 2019

Pre K- 12 818 4th St. Conway, AR 72032 501-336-8149


Banker pens guide to debt-free living Do you want to save enough money to retire comfortably? Do you have a son, daughter or grandchild who will soon be living independently? Perhaps you know someone who spends money beyond his/ her means and is trying to get out of debt? If no one comes to mind, could this person be you? If you answered yes to any of these, Brian Wade Atkins’ book, “Everything Counts! Your Personal Guide to Debt Free Living,” may be just the read! Brian has worked in the banking industry since 2001, and he is currently a first vice president and commercial lender for BancorpSouth in Conway. A graduate of the University of Central Arkansas, his Susan first post-college job was auto sales, which he says Peterson gave him real-life experience in dealing with a variety of people and finances. Susan Peterson holds a PhD in education and taught But he first became aware of money and money at the University of Central management while growing up on his family farm Arkansas and Slippery Rock University in Pennsylvania. She near Stuttgart. He observed many friends and relaretired in 2004 and now spends tives living paycheck to paycheck, causing undue her time doing artwork (painting and pottery). She is the executive tension and stress. He also witnessed how proper secretary of the Arkansas Reading money management and frugal living paid off for his Association, a professional grandparents and others. Brian opted for the latter organization for educators that has about 800 members route. statewide. As frugality became a way of life, Brian’s friends and family began asking him for tips and advice on how to save. His book, which he published in 2013 using Amazon’s Create Space, is an extension of that list. The “hero” on the cover is actually Brian. “The photo symbolizes two of my favorite things – comic book heroes and saving money, he said. ” To those who know him, saving money is undoubtedly his superhero power. His book offers practical advice in an easy to read format. Sometimes it’s just learning how to say no to little temptations, whether a cup of coffee or dessert at a restaurant, that can add up. “The question is never what you can afford to spend, but rather what can you afford to save.” He stresses that now, more than ever, families must be responsible for their own future financial welfare. “There are no guarantees that your retirement plan at work or other programs will be enough or will even be there when you need

them.” Although Brian initially wrote the book for young adults, it is suitable for any age. One reviewer wrote, “I bought the book for my college-aged son, but I found so much useful advice in it that I read it and took notes! A bit of advice for every situation and life event. Such a great and easy read.” Brian is married to Terina Atkins, media specialist at Vilonia High School. They have two children, Megan, 19, and Mason, 17. Brian and Terina practice what they preach. For example, rather than hiring a photographer, the cover image of Brian on the book was taken by Terina. By paying attention to daily expenses and applying the principle of delayed gratification, they have been able to provide experiences their family Terina and Brian Atkins. may not have otherwise been able to afford. Even then, Brian always makes sure he is getting the best bang for the buck in the form of airline and hotel points, special credit card promotions, etc. The couple also imparted their frugal lifestyle to their children. They openly discuss family finances and explain reasons for making certain decisions. Brian believes that sharing in financial success with the entire family is critical to demonstrating tangible results from their efforts. This, he says, is where you get real results -- not from some one-time effort, but from a sustained set of life choices practiced over decades. Applying the principles found in Everything Counts! Your Personal Guide to Debt Free Living can help attain a better financial future and, if applied early enough, can help to attain a secure retirement. But the time to start is now. The book is available from Amazon and Barnes & Noble in print form as well as Kindle.

November 2019 | 65


The Morrilton Area Chamber of Commerce hosted a ribbon-cutting and Business After Hours at the grand opening of the Crow Group corporate headquarters in downtown.

Grand opening

Crow opens headquarters in Downtown Morrilton

Crow Group President Brian Rohlman (left) and Morrilton Mayor Allen Lipsmeyer (right) hold the ribbon as Crow Group Owner Mike Miller prepares to cut it. Sonja J. Keith photos An estimated 200 people recently attended the grand opening of the Crow Group’s newly renovated corporate headquarters in Downtown Morrilton. The company celebrated with employees, the community, clients and vendors with a ribbon-cutting and business after hours event co-hosted by the Morrilton Area Chamber of Commerce. Festivities included comments from Crow Group President Brian Rohlman, Crow Group Owner Mike Miller and Conway County Economic Development Corporation President Jerry Smith who closed the comments with a resounding, “It’s a great day for Conway County� cheer. Morrilton Mayor Allen Lipsmeyer also 66 | 501 LIFE November 2019

Mike Miller (from left), Ronnie Mobley, Austin Foshee, Philip Freyaldenhoven and Brad Deaver. commended the Crow Group for its investment in Morrilton and commitment to providing employment opportunities in the area by proclaiming it “Crow Group Day.� The ribbon-cutting was followed by guided tours of the historic Coca Cola bottling plant, which many people in the community had not seen since the renovation kickoff event in November 2018. The building, originally constructed in 1929 by the Coca Cola bottling company, was also the site of the original Morrilton Walmart Number 8 Store in the 1960s and most recently served as Morrilton City Hall and the Morrilton Police Department. Crow purchased the property in 2018 and worked with the National Park Service Historic Preservation Department to preserve the historic architecture while

Stephanie Lipsmeyer (from left), Courtney Martin and Morgan Zimmerman.

Marlin Boyle (left) and Brian Rohlman.



The Crow Gym. modernizing the facility for use as the home office for Crow’s construction and engineering services. “We are overwhelmed with the outpouring of support from this community,” said Crow President Brian Rohlman said. “Big things are happening in this community and we need to capitalize on that and continue to sell ourselves to the outside world and remind them how great we are. We look forward to the Crow Group continuing to have a presence in that movement.” Rohlman added, “This is just the beginning of what’s to come for Crow. We’ve been fortunate to have the blessings of our owners, Mike and Suzan Miller,

throughout this project and in everything we do that has allowed us to be aggressive and achieve this rapid growth. We love living here and we like working here and we hope the citizens of Morrilton will be as proud of this project as we are.” Crow Group is a diversified construction and engineering service provider headquartered in Central Arkansas. It offers services across multiple divisions including commercial, industrial, heavy civil and waterwastewater for clients across the United States. For more information, contact Morgan Zimmerman at 479.264.4332 or visit




• Construction Management • • Design Build • • General Contracting • • Engineering • Call us today to discuss your project

(501) 354-6511

Osmar Garcia (from left), David Andrews and Gilberto Garcia.

Downstairs reception and meeting space. November 2019 | 67


Conway Corp receives award Conway Corp’s local programming department received a MIDI Award at the 2019 Mid-America Cable Show held in Kansas City. Conway Corp senior programming coordinator Ryan Tucker and production coordinator Ashtyn Brown were recognized for their work on community series programming. “We love to create unique entertainment options for Conway and are proud of our original programming,� said Chief Marketing Officer Crystal Kemp. “We are honored that our work has been recognized by industry peers.� The MidAmerica Cable AsConway Corp sociation is production coordinator an industry Ashtyn Brown. association formed in 1958 to help telecommunication providers promote technical excellence, superior customer service, exemplary Conway Corp senior marketing programming and student coordinator Ryan scholarship. Tucker. It includes cable telecommunications system operators in Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Iowa, Arkansas and Texas. Conway Corp was competing with systems of 10,001-50,000 cable subscribers. To learn more about Conway Corp’s community programming, visit ConwayCorp. com/Channel5. 68 | 501 LIFE November 2019

First Service named among ‘top extraordinary banks’ First Service Bank, a local Arkansas icon, was recently named among the top extraordinary banks in the United States by The Institute for Extraordinary Banking. First Service Bank was recognized with the Institute’s Banky Award for its commitment to strong community banking. This recognition is given to top community banks across the country to help people find the best banks in their communities. “It is an honor to be recognized with the Banky Award,� said Tom Grumbles, President, CEO and chief lender at First Service Bank. “I believe this award is a testament to our employees’ hard work and dedication and, most significantly, the customers and communities we serve.� Roxanne Emmerich presents The Extraordinary Bankaward to Tom Grumbles, ing Awards highlight the vital, chief executive officer and yet often overlooked, role that board chairman at First local community banks play Service Bank. in the economy. Without a vibrant local banking industry, small businesses and families often lack the have-your-back support of a true community bank that makes communities really thrive. The Extraordinary Banking Awards recognize the best of what community banks offer to cities, towns and nation: a true commitment to the success of the small businesses and local

On hand for the award presentation were First Service chief financial officer/chief operations officer Kenneth Barnard (from left), Chief Operations Officer/Chief Mortgage Officer Robin Hackett, Roxanne Emmerich, President/CEO/Chief Lender Tom Grumbles and Market President and Loan Officer Darla McJunkins. community they serve. “Community banks are the backbone of America,� said Roxanne Emmerich, chair and founder of The Institute for Extraordinary Banking. “They are what keep a community thriving. When a community bank leaves a community, small businesses often struggle to stay, and jobs leave. Every robust community has a strong community bank that understands how to help that community thrive and grow.�

501 photographer Kemp recognized A photograph created by Mike Kemp of Mike Kemp Photography in Conway was recently accepted into the Loan Collection of Professional Photographers of America’s 2019 International Photographic Competition. Two additional images were accepted into the General Collection. Kemp’s work will be on display at the International Photographic Exhibition in Nashville, Tenn., Sunday, Jan. 19, through Tuesday, Jan. 21. Mike Kemp is the The exhibition is held in conjuncowner of Mike tion with Imaging USA, an annual convention and expo for professional Kemp Photography in Conway and the photographers. A panel of 36 jurors from across photo editor for 501 LIFE. the United States selected the top photographs from more than 5,200 total submitted entries. Judged against a standard of excellence, 625 (roughly 12 percent) were selected for the esteemed Loan Collection – the best of the best. The Loan Collection images will also be published in the “Loan Collection� book by Marathon Press. Included in the Loan Collection will be the image titled “Honor.� The photo features World War II veteran Bill Ledbetter. Kemp photographed Ledbetter for the July 2019 issue of 501 LIFE. “To be selected for the Loan Collection is one of the biggest honors I have received as a photographer,� said Kemp. “Being judged by some of the industry’s most respected

photographers and competing against a large number of talented peers can only help me improve my work and provide even better images for my clients.� The image was also given a Judge’s Award and voted “Best Portrait of a Man� at the recent Arkansas Professional PhotograA photo taken by Mike Kemp, which phers Association’s appeared on the cover of 501 LIFE, Capture 2019 was recently recognized. image competition. Founded in 1868, Professional Photographers of America (PPA) is the largest and longest-standing nonprofit photography trade association. It currently helps 30,000-plus pros elevate their craft and grow their business with resources, protection and education, all under PPA’s core guiding principle of bridging the gap between photographers and consumers. To view more of Mike’s work, visit mikekempphoto. com.

The University of Central Arkansas recently hosted a groundbreaking for Greek Village Phase II on the UCA campus. Participating in the event were Kale Gober (from left), vice president for University Advancement and president of the UCA Foundation; board of trustees members Kay Hinkle and Shelia Vaught; Interfraternity Council president Colton Rowe; National Pan-Hellenic Council representative Jarrett Counts; Ronnie Williams, vice president for Student Services and Institutional Diversity; UCA President Houston Davis; and trustees Dr. Terry Fiddler, Bunny Adcock, the Rev. Cornell Maltbia and Elizabeth Farris.

Groundbreaking held for UCA Greek Village The University of Central Arkansas recently hosted a groundbreaking for Greek Village Phase II on campus. Phase II includes Interfraternity Council (IFC) houses for Sigma Tau Gamma, Sigma Nu and Pi Kappa Alpha, along with a National Pan-Hellenic Council (NPHC) fraternity complex that will house meeting spaces and chapter rooms for Alpha Phi Alpha, Kappa Alpha Psi, Omega Psi Phi and Phi Beta Sigma. “Greek Village Phase II would not be possible without the vision, contributions and dedication of our Greek alumni,” said UCA President Houston Davis. “Our Greek system and their alumni contribute greatly to the quality of campus life and our community.” The project is made possible through private donor support from Greek alumni, parents and students. Each fraternity has a fundraising chair and committee. “Our fraternity fundraising committees have been incredible to work with, and I can’t give them enough praise. Through their efforts, we have raised more than $1.4 million for Greek Village from over 700 donors,” said Haley Fowler, director of annual giving. “Our fundraising efforts will continue as we work together to raise funds for amenities and furnishings.” Definitive talks for the second phase of Greek Village began in 2018. The UCA Foundation is funding

the project to support the university. UCA will lease the fraternity houses from the UCA Foundation, and UCA will maintain and operate the houses as residence halls. Each fraternity house will be approximately 7,365 square feet and include 11 bedrooms for 20 students, a chapter room, living room, study room and kitchen, with other amenities specific to the current and future needs of the individual fraternities. The NPHC fraternity complex will be located adjacent to the NPHC sorority complex and will include 4,730 square feet of chapter rooms and other features to support the meeting and event needs of each chapter. “The completion of Phase II will be a dream come true for our Greek fraternities and further elevates Greek life at UCA,” said Ronnie Williams, vice president for Student Services and Institutional Diversity. “This brings all of our Greek fraternities and sororities closer together physically and figuratively, fostering opportunities to build deeper relationships, strengthen academic support structures and expand service opportunities.” Greek Village Phase I opened in August 2015 and included residences for the five sororities of the Panhellenic Council and an NPHC sorority complex. Some of the primary areas of focus for Greek or-

ganizations include scholarship and service. Currently, more than 1,000 students are members of the Greek community at UCA, with a cumulative 3.24 GPA for the spring 2019 semester. Last year, UCA Greeks participated in more than 800 volunteer projects, donated more than $42,000 in philanthropic support and logged more than 11,000 hours in community service. “In addition to academics, our Greek men focus on becoming exceptional leaders in their fraternities and through campus and community service projects. These new facilities will foster new opportunities for their personal growth,” said Kaylon Bradford, director of Student Life. The new IFC fraternity houses and NPHC complex will be situated at Donaghey and College avenues, near UCA’s existing sorority houses and NPHC sorority complex, with an anticipated move-in date of fall 2020. Architects for the project include WER Architects/Planners and H+N Architects. Nabholz Construction is the general contractor for the project. For more information, contact Haley Fowler at 501.450.5698 or visit Donations to Greek Village II can be made at uca. edu/givegreek.

Debra Robinson (second from right), executive director of the Ola and John Hawks Senior Wellness and Activity Center in Conway, was named earlier this year as the “Community Leader of the Year” by the Conway Morning Rotary Club. Club members were on hand Aug. 23 at the center to present her with a plaque listing names, including hers, of community members who have been honored by the club. Presenting the plaque were president-elect Linda Tyler, Mary Kay Dunaway and past district governor Carolyn Ishee. The plaque will be displayed at the center until next year’s awardee is named. November 2019 | 69

Veteran continued from Page 29 6 and Aug. 9, 1945, respectively. The Japanese surrendered unconditionally on Aug. 15, which came to be known as Victory over Japan (V-J) Day. “We were in India when the two bombs were dropped, so the war was over,” Mitchell said. “I got home about three days before Christmas in ‘45, and then I was discharged a few months later (in February 1946).” Although he didn’t see combat, his service, like so many others in supportive roles, was absolutely vital to the war effort. “I think all of the country put a lot of effort into it,” said Mitchell, who was discharged as a captain. “We were united, and of course, in an operation that big, we did lots of things wrong, but we did lots of things right in our production and our training. “It would be a different war today with all the changes in technology and equipment.” Flight followed him after the war. He was a flight instructor and a crop duster before getting into the chemical business when he founded Helena Chemical Company in 1957. He sold his interest in the business in the mid-1960s. It is now Helena Agri-Enterprises, “one of the foremost agronomist solutions providers in the United States,” based in Collierville, Tenn., with more than 4,000 employees in about 450 branch locations, according to “The flying got me into that,” Mitchell said. David Mitchell, his son, said the company, which formulated agricultural chemicals, was all over the Southeast. “He picked Helena because of the long fields, the flat ground in the Delta and several other successful ag chem businesses,” David Mitchell said. After he went into business, flying went from his vocation to his hobby. “We had an airplane up until he was 84,” David Mitchell said. “He gave up his license when he turned 84,

Beauty continued from Page 49 begins to dissipate.

Get your dollars’ worth Administered properly, Botox typically wears off within three to four months. The protein found in Botox is no longer present in the body three weeks after injections but the results from the product will continue for months. Some patients may experience extended results lasting longer than four months. There are possible side effects to Botox, such as drooping eyelids or eyebrows. The complication, though rare, tends to occur when the practitioner is less experienced and isn’t as well versed in facial anatomy. In cases of severe eyelid drooping on one side, the injector has usually botched the placement of the Botox above the eyebrows. Sometimes this can be made better by placing more Botox to balance the mistake and lift the droop, but most times the patient must wait out the injection period, typically resulting in a droop lasting three to four months There are tricky spots that can stump even the most established practitioner. Injecting the lower face, around the jawline or lips and mouth, is less forgiving than injecting the frown lines or the eyes. Fewer units are needed in these spots, but muscle attachments, and how muscles work together, are more intricate. Be sure that whomever you select has 70 | 501 LIFE November 2019

Flying helped Billy Mitchell most of his life. “It was the center of my life,” he said. thank goodness. I was leery about his driving, and he gave up his flying. It was due to a medical thing. By that time, licenses required yearly physical exams. He said he didn’t want to compromise the physician’s integrity.” About a year ago, Mitchell, who had split most of his adult life after the war between Helena and Florida, moved to the 501 to be near his children, David, Timothy and Brenda Saunders. Son Joe died a few years ago. Mitchell, who will turn 98 on March 29, remembered an experience from his second flying course at ASTC with a red-headed classmate named Raymond Mitchell. They were on a flight with an instructor who was demonstrating an approach in which the plane is slowed, but instead it stalled, hit the ground and bounced back up in the air.

“I put my feet up on the dash and covered my face ready for a crash,” he remembered, chuckling. “The instructor told us we didn’t hit the ground, but he asked me to taxi in. He wanted to smoke a cigarette. “Raymond and I went back later on our bicycles and saw the big ruts we’d made. I saw him a few years later at Phoenix. He’d already been in combat in China with the Flying Tigers (The First American Volunteer Group of the Chinese Air Force prior to Pearl Harbor). He was killed after that.” David Mitchell said his father, like his friend Raymond Mitchell, was another hero of the Greatest Generation. “We’ve always admired him tremendously for his accomplishments,” he said. “He was the leader of the pack.”

done a lot of injections in the part of the face you’re interested in treating. I give the patient a mirror and let them talk. Some parts of the face can bother a patient more than others, and it’s those conversations that help us understand each separate case. That is just as important as the skill of the injector. Ask about pain, recovery and follow-up visits. Botox can hurt. Although the needles are tiny and the pressure light, there’s still the pinching feeling of a sharp object injecting something into your skin. Even with the best injectors, there can be light bruising afterward. I advise getting Botox a couple of weeks or more before an important event. Not only does that allow potential bruising to subside, but it also lets the neurotoxin take effect. I also encourage a patient to return for a follow-up appointment at the two-week point. At that time, I can check in to see if the patient is happy with the results or if there is a complication or concern.

You should feel free to ask a lot of questions. It is also important to ensure that the person injecting you has had official training in cosmetic injections, and is a certified injector. Never be afraid to ask to see credentials. All injectors have a beginning, including myself. There are many women from years past I wish I could call and ask for another chance. Some I may have lost through lack of experience or nervousness. Your injector should get better with years of experience, training and advance placement techniques. We were recently recognized by Allergan, the makers of Botox, as a Platinum Level Account, putting us in the top 4 percent out of 35,081 Allergan accounts nationwide. This is attributed to the amount of injections we administer at EL Clinical and the predictability of the performance of Botox Cosmetic and Juvederm facial fillers. I have been fortunate to administer training to other injectors and receive continuing education from Allergan, which has strengthened my abilities, my assurance and loyalty to Botox Cosmetics. So until the next big thing comes along which still could be years away, millions of us will continue to rely on Botox to fight those forehead wrinkles, frown lines and crow’s feet, so we can be well on our way to looking and feeling our best.

Experience counts While it’s becoming just as easy to book an appointment for Botox as it is for a manicure, that doesn’t mean everyone is qualified. Becoming a good injector is not watching a bunch of “YouTube videos.”


Cliff Henry (from left), HAVEN’s Marti Longing-Jones and Jim Wiltgen.

Cliff Henry (from left), Boys and Girls Club’s Clint Brock and Jim Wiltgen.

Cliff Henry (from left), UCA’s Reynolds’ Wendy Sparks and Jim Wiltgen.

Proceeds presented from Toad Suck Daze Run Bill Patterson photos Checks totaling $22,500 – proceeds from the annual Toad Suck Daze Run – were recently presented by the Conway Kiwanis Club to local non-profit organizations. Runners and walkers of all ages participated in the 36th Annual Toad Suck Daze 5K/10K and Tadpole Trot on May 6 at John McConnell Stadium at Conway High School. Proceeds from the race benefited a variety of local non-profits – Compass Academy, Community Service Inc., Community Connections, UCA’s Reynolds Main Stage, Help for Abuse Victims in Emergency Need (HAVEN) and the Boys åand Girls Club of Faulkner County. Baptist Health’s Jason Eakin was presented with a Baptist Health Heart plaque by Jim Wiltgen in appreciation of the health Institute-Conway and system’s support of the run. Arkansas Cardiology were presenting sponsors again this year. The Kiwanis Club has donated $458,000 over the years to local charities with race proceeds. The Conway Kiwanis Club is the main organizer of the event, which is supported by the Conway Running Club and Conway Convention & Visitors Bureau. The Toad Suck 10K was started by the Conway Kiwanis Club in 1982 and held in conjunction with the Toad Suck Daze Festival. In 1984, First National Bank of Conway (now Regions) began a race in memory of a fellow employee, Randy Baker, who died of cancer. The Randy Baker 8K was conducted for two years, with proceeds benefiting the American Cancer Society. In 1986, the Conway Kiwanis Club approached Regions Bank, and the two races were combined. The Toad Suck Daze Run continues to be held in memory of Randy Baker, with proceeds benefiting non-profit agencies in the Faulkner County community. For more information, visit

Cliff Henry (from left), Community Service’s Mark Tuttle and Jamie Higgins and Jim Wiltgen.

Community Connections Director Courtney Leach with Cliff Henry and Kiwanian Jim Wiltgen.

Cliff Henry (from left), Compass Academy Director Courtney Williams and Kiwanis President Jim Wiltgen. November 2019 | 71


Vilonia High School’s Dylan Briggs was selected for this year’s 501 Football Team, sponsored by Conway Regional Health System, First Security Bank and Conway Orthopaedics and Sports Medicine Center.

Greenbrier High School’s Ryan Barnard is a member of the 501 Football Team, sponsored by Conway Regional Health System, First Security Bank and Conway Orthopaedics and Sports Medicine Center.


Greenbrier, Vilonia rivalry ignites again by Levi Gilbert and Mark Oliver Mike Kemp photos

Faulkner County’s premiere football rivalry ignites again this November as Greenbrier and Vilonia vie for the First Service Cup. With Vilonia’s competitive resurgence in year two under Todd Langrell, this year’s 72 | 501 LIFE November 2019

showdown will be even more tense as playoff implications will likely be on the line in Week 10. Greenbrier’s Ryan Barnard and Vilonia’s Dylan Briggs understand the weight of the annual rivalry for both the 5A West conference and the Greenbrier and Vilonia communities. “The Vilonia game is one of the biggest games for us every season,” said Barnard, a senior linebacker and

receiver for Greenbrier. “It’s the one game we always have circled. No matter how the season has gone and no matter where the game is being played, you can count on the stands being full and the game being great. Winning the First Service Cup means everything here in Greenbrier.” “A lot of our players know their players,” said Briggs, a senior offensive lineman for Vilonia. “It’s

bragging rights. A lot of people from our community put a lot of love and support into the football program and look forward to this game all year long.” Barnard and Briggs were both selected to this year’s 501 Football Team — 27 players representing all 11 counties of the 501. The team, sponsored by Conway Regional Health System, First Security Bank and Conway Orthopaedics and Sports Medicine Center, boasts the best the 501 has to offer both on and off the field. The two seniors were nominated by their respective head coaches. “Dylan Briggs is the type of player that every coach wants to have,” Vilonia Coach Todd Langrell wrote in his nomination. “He will get to practice early, stay late and is always on time to put in the work required to be the best he can be.” “Ryan Barnard is a smart, tough football player,” Greenbrier Coach Randy Tribble wrote in his nomination. “He is a quiet leader, an outstanding Christian young man and is a leader for us on the field, offensively and defensively, as well as in the locker room.” Since 2001, Greenbrier leads the series, 10-8, and has won the last seven matchups. As of press time through Week 5, Vilonia (3-2, 2-0) is tied atop the 5A West, and Greenbrier (3-2, 1-1) sits just one game behind. According to Barnard, Greenbrier’s chemistry has been the team’s recipe for success this season. “We have a lot of seniors this year and we all have great chemistry,” Barnard said. “Most of us have been playing together since third grade, so we know each other and trust each other. During practice, we try to keep everything fun and enjoyable so that our underclassmen want to be there instead of making them feel like they have to be there. We’re a great family.” It’s been awhile since Vilonia took home the First Service Cup, but Briggs is confident that this year could be the year. “Like Coach Langrell says, we have the tools in the tool shed, meaning we have the athletes and the talent to win,” Briggs said. “We just have to prepare and have good practices. Stacking good day after good day in practice. Going out at practice and working with a good attitude to prepare and to get better.” Vilonia plays host to Greenbrier for the First Service Cup at 7 p.m. Friday, Nov. 8.

Kenneth Barnard and his son, Ryan, with the First Service Cup, a traveling trophy that is presented each year to the winner of the Greenbrier-Vilonia high school football game. This year’s First Service Cup game will have special meaning for Greenbrier senior Ryan Barnard and his family. In 2001, First Service Bank created the First Service Cup, a traveling trophy, to celebrate the annual football game between Greenbrier and Vilonia. First Service is headquartered in Greenbrier and is owned and operated by the Tom Grumbles Family. Ryan is a son of Kenneth and Rebecca (Grumbles) Barnard. “It’s a pretty exciting year to have a senior football player and to watch

them have really great success in their football program,” said Kenneth, who is the chief financial officer at First Service. Kenneth said it has been enjoyable to watch his son learn and play the game, beginning in the third grade in the local peewee program, and “the passion he has shown for it” from the beginning through high school. “It’s been exciting to watch for 10 years.” Ryan has played other sports, including baseball, basketball and soccer, but is now focused solely on football. “It’s the one he is most

passionate about.” Kenneth said the Greenbrier-Vilonia game is significant because of the cross-county rivalry between the two schools. “It’s a big game every year,” he said. “First Service Bank is honored to be a part of that tradition and to have a trophy that supports that tradition.” Kenneth said all of his three sons are aware of the importance of the rivalry between the two schools. “They learned at an early school age to become passionate about the rivalry between Vilonia and Greenbrier. It’s such a big game

every year. Whether it is seventh grade football or its senior high football, that seems to be a very important game that all the coaches and players on each side certainly circle, want to play and enjoy the competition and the tradition of the rivalry.” As a senior, Ryan’s family is happy about the season but they also know that soon he will hang up his Panther football jersey. “It's an exciting year for Ryan, and to know that he is crossing a milestone and moving on to the next phase in his life. We are excited about that, but it also brings up emotions knowing that he won’t get to do that next year. He will always be a Greenbrier Panther alum, but next year he won’t get to wear the Panther football uniform and dress out as a football player,” Kenneth said. First Service Bank is proud to serve as the sponsor of the competition between the two towns, and that’s not just from a personal perspective, Kenneth said. “We enjoy being part of our community and are honored to support it that way.”

November 2019 | 73


Hot Spring County: Caitlyn Castleberry Caitlyn competes at the Arkansas High School Rodeo in Monticello in November 2018. (Ann Scroggins photo courtesy of 1+S Pix)

She could write as well as read in kindergarten. Because Charles and Vanessa Castleberry are university graduates with a love of farm life and animals, it was predictable that their firstborn would possess a similar bent for the academic and the rustic. In 2008, barely 5 years old, Caitlyn Jane Castleberry left her native Columbus, Ga., for Meridian, Miss., where she joyfully welcomed both reading assignments and horse-riding lessons at St. Patrick’s Catholic Elementary School. Within a year, while excelling in the classroom, she had learned three rodeo events — the barrel race, the pole bend and the goat-tie. Emerging, unquestionably, were the initial indicators of a lifetime Dr. Robert of success in horsemanship and in agricultural leaderReising ship. Her father’s responsibilities as director of Southern Dr. Robert Reising retired from the University of Central planning and inventory for Weyerhaeuser, one of the Arkansas in 2013 after holding a variety of teaching, coaching and world’s largest private owners of timberlands, required administrative posts during more that he and his family relocate twice more before settling than a half-century in education. His doctoral dissertation at Duke in Bismarck in the summer of 2016. treated literature and sports. In both cities, while continuing to record only superior course grades, Caitlyn added to her skills with horses. Her 3-year stay in Athens, Ga., found her dabbling with the English style of riding without abandoning her preferred Western style. She joined the United States Pony Club (USPC), and gained her D-2 Rating, evidence she was no longer a novice. In Lynchburg, Va., with her sixth- and seventh-grade transcript reflecting only excellence and girls’ basketball and soccer returning to her extracurricular schedule, Caitlyn allowed barrel racing to dominate her free time. Two years of home schooling, Grades 8 and 9, enriched her academically and athletically, and upon joining the Arkansas High School Rodeo Association in the

501 LIFE is once again profiling noteworthy athletes, men and women who were born outside of Central Arkansas but who made their mark in the 501. The “Celebrating athletic excellence” series will feature one from each of the 11 counties in the 501. The 11 are representatives of the quality of athletes found throughout Central Arkansas and are not meant to be the best or the most noteworthy. This is the fifth installment in the third “Celebrating athletic excellence” series. 74 | 501 LIFE November 2019

fall of 2017, Caitlyn learned that a lifelong interest that she shared with her father offered her another chance to compete nationally: light rifle. She and her parents were delighted, and her dad immediately built her an appropriate rifle with a scope and launched practice sessions with her. Continuing with her barrel racing but building on deer-hunting experiences that she had enjoyed with her parent, she became so proficient in her new event that she earned a place on the four-person team representing the “Natural State” in the finals of the 2018 national high school rodeo in Rock Springs, Wyo. At age 15, Caitlyn had become a presence in national rodeo. Near misses in state competition this year – fifthplace finishes in barrel racing and light rifle – have dulled neither her confidence nor her initiative. She has continued to earn only As in her school work, and in the fall of 2019 she enrolled in four Advanced Placement courses while plunging into preparation for a quick return to the Wyoming finals, this time in pole bending and light rifle. Her skills on canvas have also improved so significantly that she added to awards won in recent years by claiming “Best of Show” honors for her painting of a saw at the 2019 Hot Spring County Fair. Two organizations are now assets in providing venues for developing her expertise in agriculture and rodeo: 4-H and Future Farmers of America (FFA). As a member of the former, for the second consecutive summer she joined her county teammates in winning the horse quiz bowl educational contest at the 2019 state 4-H horse show. She remains, too, an energetic force in the Hot Spring County 4-H Teen Leaders Club. Similarly, in FFA competition she has been a member of the district’s triumphant horse judging team as well as the winner of its discussion meet. She recently became Bismarck High’s peer-elected FFA secretary for the current school year, 2019-2020. Her FFA leadership is thus merging constructively with that which she is providing in 4-H, demonstrating what John C. Crangle, the respected Bismarck High School Agricultural Instructor, thinks desirable for all students interested in agriculture: membership in both organizations, thus working to strengthen each. In July, Caitlyn was one of the 20 rising 11th and 12th graders selected to attend the week-long Arkansas Farm Bureau’s Ag Youth Leadership Seminar. That distinction is but additional proof that the 16-year old will be handsomely prepared for undergraduate study in agriculture and horsemanship, probably in Arkansas, and, thereafter, for key posts in one or both in the state she has come to love. Hot Spring County and the 501 are proud of the transplant’s accomplishments and aspirations.

Caitlyn competes in a light rifle competition in 2018 in Wyoming.

Caitlyn won fifth place in a high school rodeo competition in April in Texarkana. (Ann Scroggins photo courtesy of 1+S Pix)

. . l E L a e SSIB R s i e O l P g s i g Y u R r E t The Snd RECOV a

In Arkansas, mental health issues are affecting people of all ages and the suicide rate across all ages is at an all-time high. But there is hope. The BridgeWay provides a continuum of care that is safe, secure and serene. Just as each patient is different, so too are our programs. The BridgeWay is the only psychiatric hospital in Arkansas with distinct programs for seniors 55 and older, adults 18 and older, adolescents, ages 13-17, and children, ages 4-12. Whether it is for mood, thought or substance abuse disorders, we provide separate units for each population.

21 BridgeWay Road, North Little Rock, AR 72113 1-800-BRIDGEWAY |

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Fun at the fair

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Al Fowler photos

The White County Fair has been an annual event for the last 80-plus years in the 501. This year’s festivities, held in September, included a parade, livestock show, live music, exhibits and carnival rides. It is one of the 10 largest county fairs in the country and was named a Top-10 County Fair by the National Fair Managers Association. The fair began in 1883 in Judsonia and moved to Searcy in the mid-1930s. For more information, visit

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Thanksgiving in the 501

When the Halloween candy has been consumed, the summer leaves have fallen and the air has turned cool, then my favorite holiday, Thanksgiving, will soon be here. Thoughts of my loved ones all together, thoughts of past Thanksgivings and sweet thoughts of loved ones who are no longer here are all a part of my celebration. It is a holiday full of gathering with family, friends, feasting and giving thanks for everything we have. It’s a time of Linda remembrance and gratitude. Henderson Traditions run strong in our family and we very seldom vary from Jim and Linda Henderson are lifelong residents of the 501. what was done last year. I think traThey travel the 501 and other ditions and holiday rituals nurture a areas of Arkansas. Jim drives and hauls equipment. Linda takes family’s bonds. They give us a feeling photographs of Arkansas. During of belonging. They bring strength to their travels, they have gained appreciation and love for The the connections from one generation Natural State. They have found to another. the 501 has so much to offer for fun and beauty to photograph. Holiday traditions teach the values each family feels are important and need to be passed to the next generation. Designated time together each year creates closeness and fosters genuine concern and support for one another. Spending time together during the holiday keeps us in touch with each other. We know this kind of relationship is not always the norm and we are grateful to have it.

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I will always remember Thanksgiving as a child with Aunt Sammie and Uncle Guthrie. We would drive to Little Rock each year on Thanksgiving Day to their house. Their house was big and always decorated with pumpkins and the table was always set with colorful fall linens. The fare was traditional, but Uncle Guthrie was in command when it came to the dressing. The dressing he made each year was moist and full of fall spices. The smell of roasted turkey, sage and poultry seasoning permeated the whole house. Some of the loved ones that oversaw Thanksgivings plans each year when I was a child are no longer here on this earth. Now, my generation is the one who organizes and plans and does much of the cooking for the yearly Thanksgiving Day celebration. It took me years of trial and practice to perfect and duplicate the taste of Uncle Guthrie’s spicy dressing. I am now known as the “Cornbread Dressing Fixer” in our family. My dressing is made in a crock pot, using store-bought short cuts. I am not sure if Uncle Guthrie would have approved, but it has now become our family’s cornbread dressing recipe. The recipe has been shared with many and it is made by family members from Florida to California. My son and daughter-in-law celebrate Thanksgiving in their home each year in California and Mom’s Crock Pot Dressing is a part of their “California Thanksgiving” along with either Pacific Ocean surfing or snow skiing at Tahoe on Thanksgiving Day. The Henderson Family now celebrates each year at our cabin in the foothills of the Ozarks. The cabin’s kitchen will be filled with delicious smells; the dining table will be filled with family favorites. Our country table will be graced with Jim’s smoked ham and turkey, my cornbread dressing, Missy’s corn casserole, Mimi’s fruit salad, Amanda’s pies and the adult nieces will bring cookies, brownies and other sides. The table will be decorated with Missy’s wooden pilgrims. The house will be decorated with colorful leaves and my homemade cloth stuffed pumpkins. Prayer for the meal and God’s gracious blessing will be said as we all hold hands in a circle of love, then laughter and sweet dialog will be heard around the table. The meal will be consumed, and the family will head outside to take the annual Thanksgiving pictures. Although not all family members will be together for Thanksgiving from year to year, which means our “kids” have grown up and established their own families and traditions, we still will wish we were all there under one roof. But soon Christmas will be here and if the Lord permits, we will all be together for another Christmas Eve.

LINDA HENDERSON’S CROCK POT CHICKEN AND DRESSING 9x12 pan of cornbread (it can be made by using a commercial cornbread mix or homemade) 1 small onion, chopped 2 stalks of celery chopped 1 box of prepared cornbread stuffing 1 can of cream of chicken soup 1 can of cream of celery soup 1 carton of chicken broth 1/2 stick of butter 1 and 1/2 teaspoons of sage 2 teaspoons of poultry seasoning (I sometimes add a little more) 1/2 teaspoon salt or to taste 1/2 teaspoon pepper or to taste 2 cooked and diced chicken breasts Make cornbread according to the directions on the package. Add the chopped onion and celery stalks to the cornbread batter. Bake at 400 degrees for 25 to 30 minutes. When cornbread is done, allow it to cool enough that it can be crumbled. While the cornbread is baking, combine cornbread stuffing, cans of soup, chicken broth, butter, sage, poultry seasoning, salt, pepper and chicken breasts. After cornbread is slightly cooled, add the above ingredients and cornbread to a large crock pot. Cook for 2 hours on high or 3 hours on low.

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NEIGHBORS special friends

Volunteers at Companions: Vickie Repp (front, from left), Gina Musa-Allen, Linda Shock, Judy Engelhard, Doris Flaherty, Rob Kennedy; Margaret Ellison (back), Karen Satroschak and Robert Williams.

Helping ‘Companions’ Thrift store supports humane society efforts by Kiera Oluokun Mike Kemp photos

Companions Thrift Store has been a staple in the 501 for 20 years. Store manager Doris Flaherty says that they do it all for the animals. The thrift store, operated by the Humane Society of Faulkner County, helps support the rescue and spay/neuter efforts for the Companion Spay and Neuter Clinic in the Springhill community and other activities associated with helping animals in the Faulkner County area. All proceeds from the thrift store go to the Humane Society. As for Doris, her involvement with the thrift store came when she moved to Conway upon retirement. “We moved here, after we retired. My daughter started coming here to volunteer and then I came along too,” said Doris. “Once she went on to work at a regular job, then I just continued, and this is my retirement.” 80 | 501 LIFE November 2019

Doris said the biggest struggle with running the thrift store is getting patrons to shop —especially college-aged students. “We are always looking for college students and we have trouble getting them to come shop. Our prices are really good and it’s going toward a good cause.” The thrift store and the Humane Society of Faulkner County are supported exclusively by donations, fundraisers and grants. Advertisement is done through various social media platforms including Facebook. Outside of the thrift store, the Humane Society also hosts Bingo on the third Friday of every month at the Greenbrier City Event Center. Currently, the Conway Animal Control is the only local shelter, but it is only available to Conway residents. “Conway Animal Control does a great job, however, for a lot of animals in the county, they have nowhere to go,” said Doris. Over the last five years, the county government has collected a voluntary tax for the construction of an animal shelter for Faulkner County residents. In the meantime, until the shelter is built, the Humane Society of Faulkner County has

a small number of volunteer foster homes who take in stray animals, however, there are not enough homes for the demand. To help in the effort to help eliminate the stray population, most of the store proceeds support the clinic, which offers spay/neuter services at a lower cost as well as vaccinations, heartworm testing, microchipping, deworming and nail trims. The thrift store takes new or gently used clothing, jewelry and most household items except old televisions and computers. Although the store is supported by the Humane Society, the store does not accept stray animals at the location. “We try not to deal with allowing people to drop off animals at the store, although people still do,” said Doris. The store is also always looking for volunteers to assist with the mission. “I have nine volunteer workers and they have just become friends — I think that makes it more fun. I also love meeting everybody. We meet a lot of people here — different people from different places.” To volunteer at the store, Doris said individuals should come in, meet with her and fill out the paperwork. The Humane Society of Faulkner County also offers a food pantry program at the spay/neuter clinic, adoption services and an injured animal program. For more information on the thrift store or programs associated with the Humane Society of Faulkner County, please visit The hours for the thrift shop are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday, Tuesday and Thursday; and 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Friday and Saturday. The store is closed on Wednesday and Sunday.

The thrift store and the Humane Society of Faulkner County are supported exclusively by donations, fundraisers and grants.

Doris Flaherty manages the Companions Thrift Store, which benefits the Humane Society of Faulkner County.

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November 2019 | 81

NEIGHBORS person of the month

Henry L. Turner

CITY: Morrilton. WORK: Retired principal at North Side

Elementary School in Morrilton (1972-1989); high school principal in Des Arc (1968-1972); and coached mostly basketball in Arkansas and Texas.

WHY DID YOU DECIDE TO GO INTO EDUCATION: I love working with young people. I

loved coaching all sports. I think I was meant to be an elementary school teacher.


Coached elementary basketball and Little League baseball.

CHURCH ACTIVITIES: I used to sing in the choir. My wife is a retired Methodist minister.

FAMILY: Wife – the

Rev. Beth Turner; Children – Paul, Jane, Hank and Cone (all graduated from college); and grandchildren – Hunter, Sierra and Dakota

EDUCATION: Arkansas State Teachers College (now the University of Central Arkansas) – 1951. College of the Ozarks (now University of the Ozarks) – 1946-47 (played football and basketball; theater); Warren High School – 1943 (played football and basketball; theater). MOST CHERISHED POSSESSION: My wife,

children and grandchildren.


The South Conway County School District recently recognized former principal Henry Turner for his service to the district. He also served two years with the U. S. Navy as an aviation radioman on a SB2C Helldiver. “I trained to go aboard the aircraft carrier Midway 1944-1946,” he said. “Since retiring, my wife and I have been to 50 states, five continents and over 25 countries.”

Ballgames at Morrilton High School, UCA, Arkansas Tech, Hendrix College and the University of Arkansas; golf; and camping at state parks all over Arkansas.

FAVORITE PLACE IN ARKANSAS: I love the Ozark and Ouachita mountains and the beautiful lakes. WHAT DO YOU LOVE ABOUT LIVING IN THE 501? I love all the people, the beauty of the

mountains and the lakes, and the music and sporting events. 82 | 501 LIFE November 2019

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At First Security, we’re thankful for our customers. The individuals, families and businesses we serve make Faulkner County an even better place to call home. It’s why we love doing business here – and why you won’t find us anywhere else. During this Thanksgiving season and all year long, First Security is here for you.

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