AY About You August 2022

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$5.00 U.S. ARKANSAS’ LIFESTYLE MAGAZINE | AUGUST 2022 | AYMAG.COM Livin’ in Little Rock | Cool Cocktails | Health Care Professionals DOGDAZE!



Make 2022 Your Year for the

Before After

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6 ON THE COVER CORRECTION: In our June issue, two of our 2022 Best Lawyers were listed at the wrong firm: Brian A. Vandiver and Cade L. Cox are with the law firm, Cox, Sterling, Vandiver & Botteicher, PLLC in Maumelle, Arkansas. Our annual Dog Daze issue is here, and you’ll want to dive in nose-first. Read more: page 74 Dog Friendly Bucket List, page 76 WHAT’S INSIDE 10 Publisher’s Letter 12 Connect 14 Top Events 166 Murder Mystery 168 Arkansas Backstories HOME&GARDEN 16 Design with Distinction 24 Gardening with Hocott's FOOD&DRINK 44 Cool Cocktails 50 Tontitown: The Venesian Inn & Grape Fesitival 56 Face Behind the Place: Ben Brainard DOG DAZE OF SUMMER 74 A Dogs Life Dog-Friendly Restaurants 84 Diving Into Dog Ownership 90 Paws In Prison 128 Adoptable Dogs TRAVEL 28 Livin' in Little Rock 108 Community Profile "Mo-town" Morrilton 114 Hotel Louis in Wilson HEALTH 121 AY 's 2022 Best Health Care Professionals ABOUT YOU 62 Simple + Sweet Creamery 68 Mocktail Mo 162 This Side of Seven: Better Than Beating Alabama


Heather Baker hbaker@aymag.com


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Joe David Rice, born in Paragould and reared in Jonesboro, probably knows Arkansas as well as anyone alive. The former owner of an outfitting business on the Buffalo National River and the state’s former tourism director, his Arkansas Backstories is published by the Butler Center.

Dwain Hebda is president of Ya!Mule Wordsmiths in Little Rock. A writer, editor and journalist of some 30 years, his work appears in more than 30 publications in four states. Nebraskan by birth, Southern by the grace of God, he and his wife, Darlene, have four grown children and two lovely dogs.

Kaitlin Barger is a Little Rock native who has been contributing to AY Magazine for nearly four years. She has an affinity for animals and serves as an officer on the board of directors for the Friends of the Animal Village. Kaitlin earned her bachelor’s degree in communications from the University of Arkansas.

Julie Craig began her magazine career while living in New York City as an intern at Seventeen. With fashion and home design as her forte for the past 15 years, Julie is a blogger, writer and editor who has reported stories for Us Weekly and written about and photographed New York Fashion Week.

Nic Williams, an Arkansas native, is a practicing lawyer and contributor to AY About You. He has developed original recipes for more than half a decade and considers Ina Garten as his inspiration. Most importantly, he’s a proud doggy dad and is grateful for his supportive friends and family.

Becky Gillette is a freelance writer/ photographer based in Eureka Springs whose work has been published in about 50 magazines and in newspapers nationwide. Her articles have appeared in Ladies Home Journal, Organic Gardening, Utne Reader, E, The Environmental Magazine, Arkansas Medical News, BioScience and Stockman Grass Farmer

Angela Forsyth lives in Northwest Arkansas. Her articles have been published in AY About You, Arkansas Money and Politics, Food & Drink, Modern Home Builder, Manufacturing Today, Inside Healthcare, Retail Merchandiser and many more magazines. She’s a happy wife and mom to four kids and a dog.

Jason Pederson spent 20 years as KATV’s Seven On Your Side reporter. He is now Deputy Chief of Community Engagement for the Arkansas Department of Human Services. He and his wife, Mary Carol, have two bio logical children and one bonus son. They are long-time members of Fellowship Bible Church in Little Rock.

AY Magazine is published monthly, Volume XXXV, Issue 4 AY Magazine (ISSN 2162-7754) is published monthly by AY Media Group, 910 W. 2nd St., Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201. Periodicals postage paid at Little Rock, AR and additional mailing offices. Postmaster: Send address changes to AY Magazine, 910 W. 2nd St., Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201. Subscription Inquiries: Subscription rate is $20 for one year (12 issues). Single issues are available upon request for $5. For subscriptions, inquiries or address changes, call 501-244-9700. The contents of AY are copyrighted ©2021, and material contained herein may not be copied or reproduced in any manner without the written permission of the publisher. Articles in AY should not be considered specific advice, as individual circum stances vary. Products and services advertised in the magazine are not necessarily endorsed by AY

Please recycle this magazine.

Thank you for choosing Amerine Eye Care as one of the Best Healthcare Professionals. The mission of Amerine Eye Care is to “Preserve Sight for Life” by maintaining your eye health through professional and comprehensive eye examinations. amerineeyecare.com Amerine Eye Care PRESERVING SIGHT FOR LIFE AMERINE EYE CARE DOCTORS AND STAFF ARE HONORED TO BE RECOGNIZED AS BEST HEALTH CARE PROFESSIONALS AND PLEDGE TO CONTINUE PROFESSIONAL AND QUALITY CARE. • Comprehensive Eye Care • Pediatric Eye Care • Contact Lens Evaluation • Dry Eye Center SERVICES 501.223.2020Call today! West Little Rock 11401 Financial Center Pkwy, Suite 102 A North Little Rock 4120 E. McCain Blvd, Suite 104

(Wo)man’s Best Friend

They say a dog is a man’s best friend, due to their loyalty and companionship with humans. On the other hand, they say that diamonds are a girl’s best friend.

I say, why not both?

Recently, some of the most incredible people came together to ensure my fiancè(!) Ryan could plan a surprise proposal to me on what I thought was going to be just a simple (much-needed) vacation in sunny Cancún, Mexico.

Ashley Russell, a travel agent with Small World Big Fun, worked behind the scenes with Ryan to plan the proposal that blew me away. I worked with Ashley to set up the travel itinerary for Cancún and Gabriela with Hyatt Zilara. Ryan was somehow able to discreetly hide from me a beautiful engagement ring from Sissy’s Log Cabin and coordinate a photographer for the beach proposal of a lifetime, complete with dozens of white roses and giant letters spelling “MARRY ME” spread out across the gorgeous shoreline.

I am elated to officially welcome Ryan into my life. He is my best friend. And he has accepted my loved ones as his own, including of course, my other best friend, Mr. Charlie Brown.

On that note, this August, we celebrate man and woman’s best friend with our annual “Dog Daze” issue, featuring a list of dog-friendly restaurants sponsored by Bark Bar, and tips about diving into dog ownership from our friends at Lake Hamilton and Hot Springs Animal Hospitals.

Speaking of those dog days of summer, we’ve also got the perfect way to cool down with some Cool Cocktails, and some even cooler “Mocktails,” thanks to Ms. Mocktail MO.

AY’s 2022 Best Health Care Professionals will also be named, a group of some of the most hard-working and reputable health care professionals throughout the state. From doctors to nurses to surgeons and everyone in between, we are still saluting our health care heroes.

We also have an interesting section featuring some fascinating destinations such as the little-big town of Wilson up in northeastern Arkansas. And Mr. Joe David Rice, former Arkansas tourism director, boogies down to “Mo-town”, aka Morrilton, Arkansas, for an expertly guided tour.

I hope this issue gets two paws up from you and your furry friends, and don’t forget to check out some adorable adoptable dogs before you go.

That’s it from me, and us, this time. Thank you for reading. I hope you enjoy.

hbaker@aymag.com / heatherbaker_ar

publisher's letter


“This is my Daddy that recently passed away. My sister shared this with me from an article they did on him in [AY] Magazine. I am, and have always been, very proud of him and share this in hopes you enjoy reading about the man whose shoes I have tried to walk in my whole life.”


“Just wanted to reach out and say we appreciate y’all showing us mom-and-pop shops some love on the list. We don’t get the big recognition like a lot of chains do and we are grateful to be included in y’all’s list. Enjoy your trip around the state sampling all the great barbecue!”


“We need one here in North Little Rock or Little Rock. We like Whataburger. That’s my favorite place to eat. If one came out here I would be at it every day. I always have to drive just to get y'all food– please come to Little Rock or North Little Rock where I stay.”


“My childhood hangout memories just crushed into rubble. I'm 57 so I guess it was probably time.”


“So proud to have Sissy’s join the Promenade family.”


“Great write up! I need to come check it out now that it's fully operational! Love this!”

Kelly Kendall

In the busiest days followingthe Miss Arkansas pageant,the new Miss Arkansas Ebony Mitchell was kindenough to sit down withAbout You to tell us a little about herself.

The Little Rock Zoo announced on Twitter that they have welcomed a babygibbon, born on July 11.

Ashley Russell, a travel agent with Small World Big Fun, worked behind the scenes with AY Publisher Heather Baker's fiancé Ryan to plan the proposal that blew her away, and that she didn’t see coming.

Women’s Own Worth (W.O.W.) – the non profit organization lead by founder, Jajuan Archer, has named Dawn Oakley Jones, the executive brand manager at Sissy’s Log Cabin, as the 2022 W.O.W Woman of the Year.

TRENDING ON AYMAG.COM Shorty Smalls Undergoes Major Demolition Walk-On’s Sports Bistreaux Opening Three Locations in Arkansas New Gokū Ramen Bar to Open in Maumelle Fayetteville First City in Arkansas to Officially Ban Retail Dog, Cat Sales Cave City Watermelon Festival Releases 2022 Schedule Follow heatherbaker_ar on IG for weekly Bucket List restaurant giveaways. READER FEEDBACK INSTAGRAM



August 8

Walmart AMP — Rogers

Rappers Wiz Khalifa and Logic will be teaming up to take the stage in Rogers for their Vinyl Verse Tour, along with 24kGoldn, DRAMA, Fedd the God and C Dot Castro. Music starts at 6:30 p.m.


August 14

First Security Amphitheater — Little Rock

Little Rock is one of many stops on Keith Sweat’s tour this summer. The R&B artist is “bout’ to make you sweat” this August. Joined by Babyface and Jody Watley, Keith Sweat will take to the First Security stage at 6 p.m. VIP ticket holders will be allowed into the amphitheater at 4:30 p.m. and the gates for general ticket holders will open at 5 p.m.


August 24

First National Bank Arena — Jonesboro

It’s Pirate Day in Adventure Bay and Ryder will need all paws on deck as he and the PAW Patrol discover a secret treasure map while on a mission to rescue Cap’n Turbot from a mysterious cavern. It’s up to Chase, Marshall, Skye and all their heroic pirate pup friends to save the day and find the pirate treasure before Mayor Humdinger finds it first! The show starts at 6:00 p.m.


August 26

Walmart AMP — Rogers

We “thought you should know” that Morgan Wallen will be stopping by the Walmart AMP on his Dangerous Tour, along with country music singer HARDY. Gates open at 6 p.m. Music starts at 7 p.m.


August 26-27

TempleLive — Fort Smith

Located in an original wild west border town, the 2022 Fort Smith International Film Festival, celebrates “Borderlands,” where the stories of our lives exist.

14 agenda
you just can't miss!
aymag.com15 events 6
12-14 Arkansas Kennel Club AKC Dog Show Arkansas
13 Back to School Festival Regional Park Amphitheater, Pine
11 Drink and Think — I Spy the Night Sky Mid-America Science Museum, Hot Springs 20 Black-Owned NW Arkansas Expo Theatresquared, Fayetteville 25-27 Fayetteville Roots Festival Downtown, Fayetteville 26-27 Fifth Annual Hot Springs Baseball Weekend Hot Springs Convention Center, Hot Springs 27 Trace Adkins Magic Springs Theme and Water
Hot Springs 6-7 KARK 4 FOX 16 Central Arkansas Women's Expo 2022 Arkansas State Fairgrounds, Little Rock 23-27 Washington County Fair Fairgrounds, Prairie Grove 4 Dierks Bentley Walmart AMP, Rogers 6 Kevin Hart Simmons Bank Arena, North Little Rock 16 Incubus with Sublime Walmart AMP, Rogers 18 Keith Urban Walmart AMP, Rogers 19 PorchFest Big Red Dog Productions, Hensley 22 Leanne Morgan ArcBest Performing Arts Center, Fort Smith 5 10 25 2827 Hank Williams, Jr. Simmons Bank Arena, North Little Rock My Fair Lady Walton Arts Center, Fayetteville North Little Rock Night with the Arkansas Travelers Dickey-Stephens Park, North Little Rock Northwest Arkansas Wedding Show Four Points by Sheraton, Bentonville
10 Phil Vassar Hope Fair Park, Hope
Arkansas State Fiddle & Banjo Championship
Folk Center State Park, Mountain View
State Fairgrounds,
Arlo McKinley
Majestic Lounge, Fayetteville

A downtown Conway architecture firm makes a distinctive mark with an array of projects in both commercial and residential design.


custom and completely unique. Located in downtown Conway, Sowell Architects has been in busi ness since 1995 with an impressive and distinctive port folio of projects.

Partners Rik Sowell, Cody Ferris and Emily Ferris are all licensed architects registered with the American Institute of Ar chitects (AIA). While the company primarily focuses on com mercial architecture, it also ventures into residential architecture in the form of single-family homes and multifamily construc tion, such as apartments and townhomes.

“When we take on residential projects, we purposefully avoid the terms ‘high-end’ and ‘upscale’ or even ‘large,’ ” Rik says. “A home doesn’t have to carry these tags to be distinctive and cus tom. Our homes reflect the indi vidual personalities of our clients, and that’s what makes a custom home.”

With sweeping views of Conway’s Lake Beaverfork, the Lakeview Residence is the newest residential construction project by the team. The two-story main liv ing space features a single-slope roof with floor-to-ceiling glass that leads to a large outdoor deck and living area, the perfect spot to enjoy a sunset over the lake. Be cause of the sloped nature of the lot, the home also has a full walkout basement that leads to a large, outdoor gathering area with a fire pit. The modern lines are comple mented by the warmth of natural materials, such as wood-look siding and stone.

“The homeowners wanted a home with clean, modern lines that took advantage of the prominent lake views,” Cody says.

Another three-story residence in Central Arkansas dominates the impressive design work by Sowell, and quite literally. It rests at the top of a ridge with sweeping views of the Arkansas River Valley and a third-floor informal gather ing room that features a wide balcony on the rear side.

“The owners wanted the feel of a large coun try home in Europe, using a lot of natural ma terials, not opulent but bigger than life,” Sowell says. “We used two types of native stone, slate shingles, exposed timber lintels and brick that was lightly covered with a slurry mixture so the individual bricks read through,” he explains. “The exterior was softened by the use of informal landscaping, window boxes, wood shutters and copper elements such as gut ters, decorative downspouts, chimney caps and finials. Juliette balconies add a distinctively French touch.”

The tone of the home is established at the entrance with its wide stone steps leading up to 12-tall wood-and-glass doors, with a two-story music room on the right and a curved monu mental staircase on the left.

“We don’t often have a request for this style of home, so we were thrilled at the opportunity,” Sowell says. “We have pro duced several European country homes throughout the years, but none as grand as this home.”

A stairway leads to an English-style pub above the garage,

providing an expansive view of the back, a dark stained-wood bar, a large-screen TV and a small performance stage with its own sound system.

A successful service business in Central Arkansas, the Sowell team designed a modern hillside pod home with stunning views of the lake. The large, wooded lot is located on the side of a fairly steep slope, so the owner suggested a pod-style plan.

Pods with various functions were designed and stretched across the width of the property and connected by enclosed bridges. There is a Central gathering pod (living, dining and kitchen area), two bedroom pods, a pool house /bar pod, an out door living pod and a garage and shop pod. The children’s pod is

tucked under the gathering spot.

“The intent was to disturb the existing grades and vegetation as little as possible, construct the pods on stilts and let the rain water flow down the hill – under and around the pods,” Emily explains. “This approach would ensure the preservation of the beautiful wooded site as much as possible.”

Very much modern, with sweeping roofs that expose walls of windows in each pod to offer the best views of the lake, the home also features large decks that line the lake side of the home with views down to the pool and the shoreline.

“We are seeing more and more of a demand for large, mod ern homes with views,” Emily says. “Many clients are purchas ing rural acreage on a bluff with valley views or a hillside with



Formerly home to Conway’s City Hall, this historic downtown building was transformed into a state-of-the-art co-working space for startups and entrepreneurs. The design features an industrial/modern vibe with exposed ductwork and utilities. The space is a partnership between the Conductor and Conway Corporation and will serve the small business community in the area.

Contractor: Nabholz Construction.


Recently completed construction, located on Bob Courtway Drive. The design features modern forms coupled with the warmth of natural materials such as wood and stone.

Contractor: Corco Construction.


Recently completed, located on Washington Avenue. A striking new concept for a veterinary clinic features modern lines and abundant glass. Designed with separate entrances for cats and dogs and a centrally located, shared reception space that serves both canines and felines.

Contractor: Mallard Construction.

meadow views.”

Perhaps one of the most personal projects is that of Rik Sowell’s own residence.

On the north side of Conway, high on a ridge, is a street appropri ately named, Grandview Heights. It offers arguably the best views in the city. The one-story home is approximately 1,400 square feet with two bedrooms and two baths, constructed on stilts due to the steep slope and with a large deck on the rear side. Because of the steep slope, the deck is approximately 15 feet above the ground.

Homes on large, sloped lots have been developed over decades on the uphill side of the street. The downhill side of the street has slopes that are difficult to build on, but showcase the entire reason for the stunning views. “When one of those downhill lots went up for sale, I jumped on the opportunity,” Sowell says.

Designed as a weekend home or a vacation rental, the midcentury modern style was really beginning to catch on early in 2019, so Sowell envisioned a small, modern, compact cottage with a large deck, a wall of windows and a beautiful view.

“Who wouldn’t want to rent a place like that?” he says.

“About halfway through construc tion, my home in Old Conway unex pectedly sold, so I made the decision to move into the cottage, a decision I have not regret ted,” Sowell says.

“My wife and I sold or gave away almost everything we owned, pared down to the ba sics, bought new midcentury mod ern furniture and moved into our lit tle treehouse upon its completion.”

Several steps were taken to make the home feel larger than it is. The living, dining and kitchen area is an open plan with a high ceiling. The wall color was terminated at 9 feet above the floor, and the up per walls were painted white, same as the ceiling, to expand the sense of space beyond the top of the walls. The entire rear walls, with all the windows, were painted white to expand the sense of openness, and the rear deck is the same width and depth as the open living, dining and kitchen area, so the two spaces work together.

“A lot of us baby boomers downsize and simplify as we get older, but usually not to this extent,” Sowell says. “We discovered a newfound freedom in small living, especially as it comes to the simplicity of main tenance, cleaning and landscaping, leaving us time to do more of the things we enjoy doing,” he says. “When your house is this small, you are not tempted to purchase additional household items because there

simply is no available space for anything else. We love it.”

While the kitchen is small, it’s efficient with a 9-foot island. Cabinet space is limited, so only the dishes needed are kept. There is a recess in the hall to the garage, which contains two built-in bunk beds just in case there are more sleepers than the two bedrooms will accommodate.

“We do not typically design homes this small, but this fits our criteria for residential design – unique and creative with an out of the ordinary vision,” Emily says.

With the help of builder J.C. Thornton & Company, the unique Steel Avenue Townhomes have a charming, historic quality about them and complement the surrounding architecture of Hendrix Village. All nine units feature prominent roof lines, gas lanterns and white brick to create a look that will not go out of style. Timeless elegance both inside and out.

At just over 1,500 square feet, each unit includes generously-sized living, kitchen and dining areas with 10-foot ceilings, two bedrooms and an attached single-car garage. High-quality construction materials

and techniques coupled with the classic design ensure that these townhomes will with stand the test of time. “The walkability of the commu nity is probably what is most appealing about these town homes,” Emily says. “You can easily walk to one of the three nearby restaurants in the Village or take advantage of the nearby walking trail.”

In addition to singlefamily residences, the Mead owlake upscale apartment complex is the most recent multifamily project in the works, with the help of builder J.E.G. Con tractors.

The three-story complex will contain a healthy mix of unit types and sizes, ranging from one to three bedrooms. Featuring a ‘‘transitional’ de sign with gabled roof lines coupled with shed roof elements, the palette tastefully blends brick, siding and wood for a high-contrast, interesting façade with private balconies for some.

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Gardening with Hocott’s

Tips for Late Summer, Early Fall

We all know the saying, “when in Rome, do what the Romans do.” Well, when gardening in Little Rock, do as the gardeners do. And the best gardeners in the area have looked to Hocott’s Garden Center since 1939. In fact, it was the very first garden center in Little Rock.

For the past 83 years, Hocott’s has been owned by four different families, most recently owned by Erica Schaffer and family since 2015.

“My very own obsession began with houseplants,” says Schaffer. “I didn’t have a green thumb, so I started slowly. I’m an artist and painted plants long before I trusted myself to care for them! I now have more than 60 houseplants and have started exploring the vast landscape of outdoor plants and shrubs, as well as landscape design,” she says.

Specializing in rarer, hard-to-find plants, Hocott’s caters to customers’ special requests and is like everyone’s favorite friendly neighbor down the street. The name is trusted time and time again, so that’s why when it comes to the August heat and watering – as well as pre paring for the upcoming fall season – there is nowhere better to look for tips than Hocott’s.


First thing’s first: Watering is key.

“If you don’t have a sprinkler system, keeping the soil evenly moist is important,” Schaffer says. “Early morning is the best time of day to water, so avoid watering during the hottest part of the day,” she adds. “It’s best to water slowly, to make sure the soil is kept evenly moist. Let ting grass grow a little longer can hold more moisture, helping keep the surface soil of the yard cool,” Schaffer explains. “Sprinkler systems make a big difference! Drip systems can also be set up to water containers and trellises.”

More tips for the heat:

• Mulch! Mulch helps keep the root system of plants cool by hold ing moisture and keeps weeds away.

• Choose plants that can take the heat.

• Weed. Garden weeds have expansive root systems and will com pete for water in the soil.

• Shade against direct sunlight. Use shade cloth; plant closer to the center where there’s more shade; plant in containers that can be placed in shadier areas.

• Space plants farther apart so they don’t compete for water.

• Avoid tall, raised beds (if possible) – They warm up and dry out more quickly. Large plants on trellises will also lose moisture more quickly than those growing on the ground.

But what if your garden is already dying from the August heat?

“Determine the source of the problem,” Schaffer says. “The most common cause, es pecially in this Arkansas heat, is not enough water. This usually begins at the base of plant, where you will see yellowed, brown or even crunchy leaves,” she says. “A deep water ing would be necessary, but adding fertilizer could also help.”

Other tips to revive a garden?

• Prune - This encourages them to put their energy into growing.

• Weed!

One of Schaffer’s tips for garden survival in the heat is choosing plants that can take it. So, what to buy for hot, sunny areas?

• Perennials: Asiatic Lily, Black-Eyed Susan, Bearded Iris, Blanket Flower, Coneflower, Coreopsis, Daylily, Dianthus, Delphinium, Ice Plant, Salvia, Sedum, Shasta Daisies.

• Annuals: Celosia, Cleome, Cosmos Flower, Lantana, Marigolds, Petunias, Verbena, Vinca, Zinnias.

• Shrubs: Aucuba Japonica (Gold Dust), Crape Myrtles, Indian Hawthorne, Junipers, Knock-out Roses, Nandina, Oak Leaf Hy drangeas, Pampas Grass, Rose of Sharon, Yucca.

Despite the heat, what if you have mostly shade instead? Here’s what to look for when shopping:

• Bleeding Heart, Climbing Hydrangeas, Coleus, Coral Bells (Heu chera), Euphorbia, Ferns, Foxglove, Helleborus, Hostas, Japanese Anemone, Oxalis, Polemonium (Jacob’s Ladder).

How to make a thriving August garden. Here’s your garden cheat sheet:

• Bright pops of color, such as marigolds.

• Vegetable gardens - can even be done in several containers strate gically placed to cover eye sores or areas that are considered ‘works in progress.’

• When in doubt, add mulch.

• Hanging baskets and containers - “Lush ferns on covered porches are among my favorites!” Schaffer says.



• Small-space gardening, such as container and balcony gardening.

• Eco-friendly gardening - organic products, reducing waste and plastic usage.

• Bold colors - reds, oranges and purples.

• Houseplants - rarer plants or those that have unusual variegation or color.

• Gardening for well-being - intention to increase mindfulness and improve mental health.

• Zen gardens - creating a sanctuary or sacred space for meditation.

• Water features.

• Bird baths.

• Living walls.

• Edible gardens - growing your own food.

How to Take Your Garden From Drab to Fab

“I love thinking of a yard as a living canvas, adding interesting ele ments to create its own unique beauty,” Schaffer says.

Quick and easy beautifying tips:

• Broken pots don’t need to be thrown away! They can be repurposed and used in your garden beds - either as pure decoration or creat ing interesting planters as focal points.

• Mulch really does change everything! It makes it all look fresh and is relatively inexpensive and easy to do on your own.

• Water features - Create Zen-like spaces within the garden. Water features can transform the vibe of a space immediately.

• Add seating (chairs, benches, etc.) - There’s an expansive array of styles, colors and aesthetics (from concrete to metal to plastic) and all price ranges (thrift store finds are amazing!). “I love gardens with an eclectic feel, especially when they reflect the personality of those caring for them,” Schaffer says.

Planting on a Budget

What if you’re strapped for funds this year, but still want a beautiful garden? Combining plants in a container is an affordable way to add some pop to your garden. “Terracotta pots are inexpensive, come in all sizes and can withstand the elements,” suggests Schaffer. “Choose plants with the same soil, water and light requirements. Plant them in odd numbers, including at least one thriller, spiller and filler plant,” she says.

What does that mean?

• Thriller: add height and a bold vertical element.

• Filler: more rounded and serve to make the container look full.

• Spiller: hang over the edge of the container.


Once again, Schaffer explains mulching is the easiest way to protect plants from the elements, be it heat or winter elements. More weather tips:

• Pay attention to what’s happening with the weather (i.e. extreme heat waves, heavy rainfall, freezing, frost, etc.)

• If you live in a flood zone, it’s important to select plants that can grow in or tolerate standing water - such as Dogwood, Black gum, Holly, Siberian iris, Sweetspire, Swamp mallow, Viburnum, Wil low, to name a few.

• Stake tall plants that might suffer breakage (during big storms).

• Place large buckets weighted with heavy rocks over individual plants during storms.

• Canopies, tarps, sheets and blankets can also be used to protect plants during storms.


• Add mulch.

• Check plants for diseases.

• Plant fall vegetables - Kale, Collard Greens, Onions, Shallots, Garlic, Asparagus, Turnips, Carrots, Lettuce, Spinach (monitor regularly and remove heavily diseased or infested plants).

• Leggy annuals should be pinched back and fertilized.

• Deadhead annuals and perennials to keep them blooming.

• Prepare soil in gardening beds - add amendments if needed (com post, fertilizer, nutrient additives).


“Absolutely! I think it’s important to start small,” Schaffer says. “I would probably start with some containers before committing to tend ing to an entire bed or landscape project. Investing in quality outdoor containers (that can withstand all the elements) is well worth it,” she says. “There are plenty of affordable, quality containers (such as terracotta).”

Tips for starting out:

• When planning landscape proj ects, water is a big consideration. Installing a sprinkler system could end up being worth the investment if time is an issue.

• August is an excellent time to plan and prep. Fall vegetables will be ready for harvest by spring. Seeds started indoors can be transplanted outdoors.

• Decide what area(s) you want to focus on. If you’re wanting a complete overhaul of your land scape, and budget is a concern, it’s easy to come up with phases to complete the projects, based on planting seasons.

• Vegetable gardens are a great place to start, and it’s easy to get the kids involved! There are so many options (aesthetically speaking) - it’s important to do a little research to see what appeals most to you.

Purchase tickets, reserve a tour, or learn more at: www.dogwoodcanyon.org NOW AVAILABLE TWO-DAY TICKETS


Livin’ Large in Little Rock


an old saying to describe the small-town nature of the capital city that goes, “They don’t call it Big Rock.” But that just describes the atmosphere, not a lack of things to do and see. In that regard, Little Rock can hang with the best of ’em in terms of places to eat or shop as well as attractions and events.

“When I think of Little Rock, I think of a very strong sense of community,” says Libby Lloyd, director of communications for the Little Rock Conventions and Visitors Bureau. “It’s a big small town, and I think that’s relevant to a lot of people, residents and visitors alike.

“It’s very easy to get around in this city, and we’ve got the best of both worlds of that urban/ outdoor experience. As the state’s urban core, we have all these amenities of the city, but then within 15-20 minutes, you can be in nature and outdoors, too.”


The CVB has developed an attractions pass, a mobile app that identifies local places to see where visitors can check in and earn prizes. The following is just a sampling of the attractions to be had in the capital city, as recommended by the CVB (find more at explore.littlerock.com).



No trip to Little Rock is complete without a visit to the museum detailing the eight years Bill Clinton served in the White House. The full-size replicas of the Oval Office and Cabinet Room are just the be ginning of the fabulous treasures waiting to be discovered.

BIG DAM BRIDGE littlerock.com/little-rock-destinations/big-dam-bridge

Located along the River Trail, at 4,226 feet, The Big Dam Bridge is the longest bridge built for pedestrian and bicycle traffic in North America. Great for a brisk ride or run, the BDB is also a prime peoplewatching spot spanning the Arkansas River.


Learn about the fateful events that transpired during the first days of the 1957 school year, when nine Black students attempted to report to Little Rock Central High School. Multimedia displays at the site recreate those tense days and the civil rights victory that was to follow.

LITTLE ROCK ZOO Littlerockzoo.com

The whole family can get wild at the Little Rock Zoo, home to more than 500 animals, including elephants, penguins, primates and several species of big cats. Be sure to catch a ride on the Arkansas Diamond Express historic train, and take a spin on the old-fashioned carousel.

MUSEUM OF DISCOVERY museumofdiscovery.org

Unleash the kids’ imaginations at the museum ranked by USA Today as one of the best science centers in America. The mysteries of weath er, chemistry, physics and the natural sciences are all on display here through fun, age-appropriate activities. Great for the young and young at heart.

PINNACLE MOUNTAIN STATE PARK arkansasstateparks.com/parks/pinnacle-mountain-state-park

Don’t just stay in the city – get out into nature with a trip to nearby Pinnacle Mountain State Park. One of Arkansas’s most visited state parks, Pinnacle features climbing and foot trail routes to the summit as well as world-class mountain biking trails, paddle boat rentals and Little Maumelle River kayaking.





Funky boutiques, sophisticated shops and stores chock-full of one-on-a-kind finds are on the menu for any shopping excursion in Little Rock. The following businesses were crowned Best Of in AY Magazine’s annual reader’s poll.


Looking for something unusual? Look no farther than Bang Up Betty across the bridge in North Little Rock, specializing in snarky, meaningful, well-made jewelry. The quirky pieces can be personalized in any number of ways to make a one-of-a-kind gift they’ll always appreci ate. Voted Best Jewelry Designer.



If all that shopping leaves you sore and worn out, book some time at Caracalla, voted Best Salon. Caracalla pampers you from your hair to your toes (literally), leaving you feeling rejuvenated and ready for your next adventure.



Nestled into Little Rock’s charming Hillcrest neighborhood, Box Turtle is one of the top boutiques in Central Arkansas. Voted Best Lo cal Women’s Clothing, the store also offers houseware, books, cards and other treasures for the discriminating shopper.

Rediscover the art of gentlemanly attire at Baumans in Little Rock’s Heights neighborhood. A throwback to a time when clothes made the man, Baumans provides quality merchandise and unparalleled customer service to help each client find his own personal style. Voted Best Local Men’s Clothing.

Two things you learn very quickly when you live in or visit Little Rock – one, we love our food and, two, we have plenty of restaurants to suit any taste. No matter what your favorite category or dish, you’ll find it here, just like these selections taken from the AY Magazine’s Best Of winners.



Little Rock’s favorite place for baked goods keeps rolling along, add ing another Best Bakery title to its collection. Not only does Commu nity Bakery produce the best cakes, pies and other sweet treats (try the sugar cookies) but hot artisan sandwiches and breakfast items and the best coffee around.



Folks in the South love their catfish, so to be voted Best Catfish real ly says something about Eat My Catfish. Serving up the highest-quality U.S. farm-raised filets – never frozen, duh – it’s flaky and flavorful fish. Not into it? Try the shrimp, po’boys or a plate of mudbugs (crawfish to you Northerners).



They don’t make ‘em like this anymore! Arthur’s serves only the finest beef and seafood, expertly prepared and presented with the utmost in attentive service. Winner of not one, but two Best Of awards (Best Fine Dining and Best Steak), Arthur’s is the place for a memorable evening.


BRUNO’S LITTLE ITALY brunoslittleitaly.com

When you do something for almost three-quarters of a century, you get pretty good at it. That’s just what you find at Bruno’s Little Italy, where they have been serving up the best Italian food around since 1949. Voted Best Italian, try the spaghetti carbonara or one of the terrific pizzas.

Upcoming Events

CAMP TACO camptaco.com

Summer camp was never this much fun! Voted Best New Restaurant, this funky, retro spot serves up amazing tacos and sides as well as a bevy of specialty drinks that will have you smiling in no time. There’s also a rotating tap of beers from sister brewery Lost Forty, just up the street.

MADDIE’S PLACE maddiesplacelr.com

When it’s time to let the good times roll, head to Maddie’s Place, voted Best Cajun/Creole. Settle in with your favorite cocktail, wine or one of the local beers on tap. Then enjoy the best of traditional Ca jun and Creole favorites including jambalaya, shrimp and grits and red beans and rice.



Wind down your day with a sip or two at Heights Taco & Tamale, voted Best Happy Hour. Skilled mixologists can whip up anything you can imagine or let them create something totally unique, just for you. While you’re there, get something to munch on – HTT was also voted Best Cheese Dip.

Little Rock loves a good party, as one look at the social and festival calendar will tell you. From music and cultural events to one-of-a-kind food festivals and holiday attractions, the capital city is the place to be. Check out these events, recommended by the Little Rock CVB.


Sept. 11

No one goes home hungry from one of the biggest food events of the year. Browse dozens of food trucks preparing everything from BBQ to funnel cakes to burgers and hot dogs. Plenty of music and fun for the whole family!


Sept. 24


If you dine on fine swine, this is the event for you! Every ticket holder is a judge, voting for their favorite ribs from the best competitive smokers the area has to offer. While you chow down, enjoy music, vendors and even the day’s college football on the big screen.


Oct. 14-23

If you love a good midway (and honestly, who doesn’t?) be sure to attend the Arkansas State Fair. This award-winning event brings everything you love about a fair into one place – livestock, carnival rides and games, cooking competitions and plenty of fair food.


Oct. 21-22


The largest ethnic festival in Arkansas, the Interna tional Greek Food Festival has to be experienced to be appreciated. One of the city’s largest events, the festival pays homage to the many cultures that make up Little Rock’s An nunciation Greek Orthodox Church through the dishes of their im migrant forefathers.


Livin’ in Little Rock


Central Arkansas busi nessman Steve Landers officially an nounced his run for mayor of Little Rock in September 2021. Since then, he has made it his mission to be a hands-on leader in his campaign across the city.

When asked what "Livin’ in Little Rock" means to him, Landers replied:

“Little Rock is the place I was born. I raised my family here. I do my business here and I have a lot of friends here. Our city is so di verse. There is so much real potential, but we need leadership that wants to be here. We need a change, and I will be that change.”


Livin’ in Little Rock

For more than 30 years, Briarwood Nursing & Rehabilitation Center has prided itself on being a place and a face that its community can trust and its residents can feel com fortable in.

Briarwood is a 120-bed facility that specializes in both short-term rehabilitation and long-term care, providing the flexibility to meet each and every client’s needs, without sacri ficing care quality — of which the team at Briarwood aspires for the highest of standards.

Be it transient rehabilitation or extend ed stay retirement, the staff is committed to creating and maintaining a supportive rela tionship that reinforces the dignity of every resident. This relationship-building transcends the here and now and translates to generational resident care.

34 501.224.9000 • 516 S. Rodney Parham Rd., Little Rock • briarwoodnursingandrehab.com

Livin’ in Little Rock

The Little Rock Zoo inspires people to value and conserve our natu ral world. Come see our new black rhino, Kevin, and our newest penguin, Betty White, and watch them grow!

Encounter nearly 400 animals, including many that are threatened or endangered such as: sloth bears, cheetahs, three species of great apes, and Malayan tigers.

Opportunities abound for animal interaction, from keeper chats throughout the Zoo, to meet-ngreets with penguins or other ambassador animals. Guests love the Arkansas Heritage Farm where they can feed and touch animals. Food lovers will enjoy a delicious meal at Café Africa and fun lovers always enjoy a ride on the Diamond Express Train. Come see why the Little Rock Zoo is the best place to learn, enjoy, and play!

LIONS & tigers,

aymag.com35 SEPTEMBER 15 LittleRockZoo.com

AtPinnacle Hearing, we believe in the impor tance of real connection through effective communication. Whenever we help a client hear and interact with their loved ones, we are proud to be part of that recon nection. Communication is an inte gral part of living life to the fullest and we want to make this possible by changing the way people view and manage their hearing loss.

As a locally owned hearing prac tice in Arkansas, we take pride in creating a sense of comfort and confidence through compassion and expertise. Pinnacle Hearing aims to provide world-class hearing solutions to Arkansas residents.

Pinnacle Hearing

10700 N Rodney Parham • Little Rock 501-225-6060 415 Hospital Drive • Camden 870-837-2823 Services include: • Hearing Aid Fittings • Audiological Evaluations • Tinnitus Treatment Call or Book Online pinnacle-hearing.com Helping Arkansas Hear Congratulations
one of AY’s Best Healthcare Professionals Livin’ in Little Rock
Dr. Mary Chatelain Named

GoodShepherd Nursing and Rehabilitation is committed to providing the highest quality of patient care. The highly qualified staff provides support for the tasks of day-to-day living, allowing for the enjoyment of more pleasant and carefree activities.

Good Shepherd’s tall ceilings, open floor plan and friendly faces make for an exceptionally com fortable atmosphere. And the amenities are second to none, including a lovely dining room, covered outdoor patio area, a state-of-the-art gym, beautiful garden, and more.

aymag.com37 NURSING & REHABILITATION CENTER at GOOD SHEPHERD Chad Curtis, Administrator 3001 Aldersgate Road, Little Rock AR 72205 • Phone 501-217-9774 • Fax 501-217-9781 www.goodshepherdnr.com
Livin’ in Little Rock

Livin’ in Little Rock


Heights specializes in providing short-term reha bilitation and long-term care services in a safe, comfortable, relaxing environment. The facility has a light-filled common area, reading library and secure, lush outdoor courtyards with large patios and a putting green, and a unique, open floor plan with four distinct halls, each with its own din ing hall, kitchen and neighborhood feel.

The short-term rehab center’s team of nurses, therapists and support staff work closely together to develop a plan based on the individual needs of each person. They utilize the latest programs, techniques and modalities for strengthening, balance training, pain reduction, wound healing and increasing range of motion, and offer their services six days a week. When the goal is to return home, the patient’s prior level of function is a key element that our social services and nursing staff strive to obtain upon admission to ensure a safe transition back to home.

Hickory Heights wants you and your loved one to feel happy, comfortable and safe at the facility. To learn more, log on to hickoryheightshr.com.

We specialize in Short-Term Rehabilitation and Long-Term Care services. From the moment you enter our community, we want you to experience the difference our community has to offer. From our light-filled common area to our beautiful outdoor patios, we want you and your loved one to feel comfortable and safe when staying with us.


Welcome back to school

THE PULASKI COUNTY SPECIAL SCHOOL DISTRICT boasts many dedicated educators and administrators from 26 schools across central Arkansas, which now includes the DRIVEN Virtual Academy in its second year with PCSSD. These educators have dedicated their careers to investing in young people. With a new school year beginning, here are some tips from Oakbrooke Elementary principal, Dr. Kim Truslow, and Mills Middle principal Dr. Lisa Watson.

What are you looking forward to as a new year begins?

DR. TRUSLOW: I am looking forward to seeing the bright faces of students excited to learn in a new school year and to meet new friends, making memories along the way. I am looking forward to a “normal” school year with many activities and learning opportunities present.

DR. WATSON: As an instructional leader of Mills Middle School, I am looking for scholars to showcase their creativity, be innovative, and ready to explore all areas of learning.

What can families do to prepare for the first day of school as the weeks of summer wind down?

DR. TRUSLOW: Families can begin new habits of going to bed early and getting into the school routine. Families can begin talking about how exciting a new school year is because it marks new beginnings and a fresh start to learning. Families can practice packing your backpack, opening your lunch, getting in and out of the car seat belt or booster seat, and talking about how their students will get home from school each day.

What can families and students expect when school begins?

DR. WATSON: Scholars and families can expect a school community that will meet the personalized academic and social needs of all scholars to prepare them for college and career readiness. Where differences are valued and respected.

What are your goals for the 2022-2023 school year?

DR. TRUSLOW: My goals for the 2022-2023 are to foster learning for all students where each student is known and nurtured to be the best version of themselves. My goals for the 2022-2023 school year is that every student will advance academically at least one school year in their learning and will be proud to say they are an Oakbrooke Bobcat!

DR. WATSON: The goals for Mills Middle School for the 2022-2023 school year are to establish a positive learning environment where scholars’ voices are heard and they are participating in an engaging rigorous academic setting where scholars and staff are striving for excellence.


Pulaski County Special School District spans more than 600 square miles in central Arkansas and requires highly skilled and passionate personnel to adapt educational policies and personalization to 26 schools. Every school is accredited by the Arkansas State Board of Education. PCSSD has served schools across Pulaski County since July 1927.

PCSSD is committed to creating a nationally recognized school district that assures that all students achieve at their maximum potential through collaborative, supportive and continuous efforts of all stakeholders.

aymag.com39 REGISTER NOW www.pcssd.org/register

Welcome to Dream Living.

Your dream home goes beyond walls and windows. It’s about how you live, and where — like the expertly planned neighborhoods offered by Chenal Properties. Scenic landscapes. Thoughtful extras. All comfortably nestled among the schools, restaurants, businesses and outdoor amenities you love best. These are more than dream homes. It’s a dream life. See what’s available to build or buy.

chenalproperties.com | 7 Chenal Club Blvd. | Little Rock, Arkansas 72223 | 501-821-9108

PotlatchDeltic is an expert at selling quality real estate. Having established some of the most sought-after developments in Central Arkansas, including Chenal Valley in Little Rock and Red Oak Ridge in Hot Springs, the company also offers a wide variety of recreational properties for sale around the state.


Marina Ivanovsky APRN

On being named one of AY’s Best Health Care Professionals.

Founder of Marina Lifestyle Medicine and Holistic Aesthetics.

Natural looking results with Botox/Dysport/ Fillers/Laser Rejuvenation BBL/HALO/Skin Tyte/ Diamond Glow Hydro Facial/Medical Weight Loss/Vitamin Injections/Metabolic Health.

I wish that I had not waited so long to meet Marina. Marina’s holistic approach to wellness is exactly what I have spent years searching for. Meeting Marina is like being truly seen and heard for the first time. The care she provides in the areas of aesthetics, weight management and longevity are informed by the most current research and technology. I am thrilled with all of the benefits I am experiencing as Marina’s patient. I’ve experienced a total change of prospective regarding wellness. Thank you Marina!”

Marina Lifestyle Medicine is pleased to offer the NEWEST GENERATION of FDA approved WEIGHT LOSS MEDICATION.

One of the most promising WEIGHT LOSS MEDICATIONS on the market.


• Twice as effective as other medication for weight loss.

• Half of the patients lost 15% of their body weight.

• One third lost 20% of their body weight.

How it works:

• Reduces appetite

• Improves control of eating

• Reduces food cravings

• Improves blood pressure and cholesterol

• Decreases visceral fat

• Decreases inflammation

• Improves insulin sensitivity

Schedule your complimentary consultation at Marinalifestylemedicine.com, call or text (501)204-3111
108 N Shackleford Rd. #102 | Little Rock 501. 204.3111 marinalifestylemedicine.com marinalifestylemedicine @marinalifestylemedicine

ColonelGlenn Health & Rehab is Central Arkansas’ newest, premier skilled nursing and long-term care facility, located in Little Rock. This state-of-theart care facility accepts Medicare, most private insurances, private pay and Medicaid. Colonel Glenn offers long-term, respite and rehab services, and its skilled team of health care professionals are ready to care for you or your loved one.

42 13700 David O Dodd Rd, Little
72210 501.907.8200 • colonelglennhr.com LONG-TERM CARE REHABILITATION RESPITE CARE
Rock, AR
Livin’ in Little Rock

Somegyms think core is all about abs but at The Athletic Clubs, core is all about community. Now more than ever, it's essential to stay happy and healthy. And since we hold hospitality dear, you'll experience the difference at the front door. Reach out to us via the QR code and we’ll make arrangements for you to visit your choice of Central Arkansas’ finest and most fun fitness venues. In the meantime, we'll look forward to meeting you! lrac.com • 501-225-3600 Little Rock Athletic

Club Limit of two trials per calendar year, local residents only. Offer expires on August 31, 2022. Can’t be combined with other discounts. lrac.com • 501-225-3600 Livin’
17711 Chenal Pkwy Little Rock, AR 72223 (501) 821-8005
Athletic Club
Little Rock Racquet
in Little Rock
Club • Little Rock Racquet Club

Food Fight Michelada

12oz. Bottle of seasonal Lost Forty beer, house-made ‘Basecamp Michelada Mix.’ Garnished with a lime pop, chamoy straw, cucumbers, orange, pineapple, jicama, lime, tomato. Rimmed with tajin.

CAMP TACO 822 E. 6th St. Little Rock 501.353.0884
VALHALLA :: KITCHEN + BAR 226 W. South St. Benton 501.316.4082 Beaches Love It Malibu Rum, Captain Morgan, fresh strawberry purée, orange juice, simple syrup. LOCAL LIME 17809 Chenal Pkwy. Little Rock 501.448.2226
Reserva Local Lime Dobel Reserve Tequila, triple sec, grapefruit, Demerara syrup, Fever Tree Grapefruit Soda. Grapefruit garnish.
Breaker's Roar 2oz Empress Gin, 2oz orgeat, 1oz lemon juice, dash of Angostura Bitters. Shake, strain, serve in a coupe glass and garnish with a lemon twist. SOUTH ON MAIN 1304 S. Main St. Little Rock 501.244.9660 DIZZY’S GYPSY BISTRO 200 River Market Ave. #150 Little Rock 501.375.3500 Dizzy's Punch A refreshing blend of coconut rum, dry curaçao and fresh juices layered with dark rum and garnished with a cherry and an orange slice. Guaranteed to pack a punch! COPPER MULE TABLE & TAP 3348 Main St. Bryant 501.213.0379 Blueberry Mojito Rum, simple syrup, club soda, lime. Fresh mint, fresh blueberries garnish.
DUGAN’S PUB 401 E. 3rd St. Little Rock 501.244.0542 Queen Bee Silver Star Texas Honey, Crème de Violette Liqueur and Lemonade. ZIN WINE BAR 11121 N. Rodney Parhem Rd. Little Rock 501.406.7159 Smokey Bear A smoky blackberry cocktail made with fresh purée, mezcal, honey syrup.
LOCAL LIME 17809 Chenal Pkwy. Little Rock 501.448.2226 Sun Burner Del Maguey Vida Mezcal, Plantation OFTD Rum, pomegranate liqueur, hibiscus-peppercorn honey, grapefruit, Burlesque Bitters CAMP TACO 822 E. 6th St. Little Rock 501.353.0884 Double Vision Pina Colada Plantation Original Dark Rum, pineapple, Coco López, passion fruit liqueur, lime, simple syrup.
HILL STATION 2712 Kavanaugh Blvd. Little Rock 501.747.2230 BuckshotBlackberrySour Bulleit Bourbon, fresh-squeezed lime juice, house simple syrup, blackberries, club soda, mint garnish. SAMANTHA’S TAP ROOM & WOOD GRILL THE OYSTER BARCHEER’S IN THE HEIGHTS 322 Main St. Little Rock 501.379.8019 3003 W. Markham Little Rock 501.666.7100 2010 N. Van Buren St. Little Rock 501.663.5937 Perfect Summer Roxor Gin, lavender simple syrup, fresh-squeezed lemon juice, fresh sage, dehydrated lemon garnish.

Italy in the Ozarks

Fried chicken and spaghetti, anyone? Tontitown – a town in Northwest Arkansas, rich in Italian-American history and known for its delicious Italian food – offers this unique Italian/Southern combination. If you ask Venesian Inn res taurant owner Jeff Bowen, “It’s like chicken and waffles; it just goes together.” It’s not fancy; it’s not gourmet. It’s fried bone-in chicken (or boneless breast if you order it) and a scoop of spaghetti on the side with meat sauce on top. Think of it as Italian Southern fusion.

This down-home dish of spaghetti and chicken is a historical icon in its own right, and continues to be the food star of Ton titown today. You can find it every August at the Tontitown Grape Festival and yearround at the Venesian Inn restaurant. It’s just one of the many cultural gifts spurred by the arrival of Italian immigrants to Ar


kansas in the late 1800s.

Every August, Tontitown remembers its Italian heritage with the largest carnival in Northwest Arkansas. This year (August 2-6) marks the 123rd year for this event that is all about tradition. The Grape Fes tival’s chairman Ryan Pianalto explains “It’s about honoring the Italian spirit – their hardships and sacrifices from the past gen erations and passing them down. Everyone who comes to the festival gets to be a part of that for a short time. The festival celebrates the human spirit – even today. It’s made up entirely of volunteers from St. Joseph’s Catholic Church – many who take personal vacations to make this event work.”

People come from all over to attend the Grape Festival every year. “It’s beloved be cause there is literally something for every one in the family,” Pianalto adds. “We have amazing Italian food, arts and crafts, great rides and free musical entertainment. There is no charge for admission and no charge to park. A family could come out and not spend a dime if that’s what they choose, and still have a great night out! For seven years running, NWA has voted the Tontitown Grape Festival their #1 fair/event/festival, and we take that to heart. All of our volun teers want to make sure that everyone who comes out has an amazing time and will plan on coming back every year.”

Tontitown’s Grape Festival is the largest

in NWA with rides for all ages. Every day, different local bands take the stage to of fer live music. There’s even an old-fashioned grape stomp. Anyone can jump in and have a try at stomping grapes in the old winemaking tradition. These grapes won’t actu ally be used for making wine, although old-

school winemakers do say the foot provides more control over the wine’s flavor profile, thus the honoring of this tradition.

And every year, a young woman is crowned Queen Concordia. The first queen was crowned in 1926. Nowadays, three young ladies volunteer to spend a large part

The Tontitown Grape Festival Aerial view of the Tontitown Grape Festival. Photo courtesy of the City of Tontitown.
“It’s about honoring the Italian spirit– their hardships and sacrifices from the past generations –and passing them down."

of their summer selling raffle tickets for a grand prize giveaway. In previous years, the prize has been a truck. This year, the prize was a Pioneer Honda line ATV. Whoever sells the most is crowned Queen.


The history of the Grape Festival goes all the way back to the first year Italian immigrants settled in Tontitown, well over a century ago. A mis sionary named Father Bandini, who was passionate about helping his fel low countrymen, convinced a group of Italians to wait until he could secure land before making the long trip to the United States. He found a large area near Springdale, Arkansas that was being sold for only two or three dollars an acre because the rocky soil made it difficult to farm.

In January 1898, the first family followed Father Bandini to this spot in Northwest Arkansas and before three months had passed, more than 40 families had arrived. In August of that year, they all gathered together to give thanks for their first harvest with a special church mass followed by a celebration with food, music and dancing – the very first Tontitown Festival.

Father Joseph Bandini The church ladies. Photos courtesy of The Tontitown Grape Festival Committee. Attendees of the Tontitown Grape Festival; circa early 20th century.
To this day, the St. Joseph church volunteers continue to spend days making homemade rolls and pasta in preparation for the festival.

The colony was named Tontitown after Henri De Tonti, the Italian chief lieuten ant who had established an earlier colony in Arkansas. Father Bandini became Ton titown’s pastor and eventually was elected mayor. By 1909, Tontitown had grown to 1400 acres (about twice the area of Cen tral Park) and was officially incorporated. The yearly festival tradition continued with a church service, booths, games, rides and

that wonderful Italian food.

As time went on, the festival began to draw outsiders and become very wellknown. In 1932, it became a three-day event and added the tradition of selecting a Grape Festival queen. This was also the year Tontitown began to serve its famous Italian spaghetti dinners to the public. Tontitown’s popularity was evident by 1971 when CBS came to film parts of the festival, including

grape judging, crowning Queen Concordia and the spaghetti dinners.


The Venesian Inn has been carrying on the chicken and spaghetti tradition since it opened its doors in 1947. It originally opened under the ownership of Germano Gasparotto, an Italian by birth who sold it a few years later to John and Mary Granata – also native Italians. The restaurant has re mained under that family ever since.

Jeff Bowen, who now helps run the res taurant, says his great-grandparents had been part of the original group who helped prepare food for the annual festival. His great-grandmother and his great-aunt were some of the older church ladies who would meet at the bottom floor of the old school building and spend days making bread rolls and pasta. To this day, the St. Joseph church volunteers continue to spend days making home-made rolls and pasta in preparation for the festival. When the Venesian Inn opened its doors 75 years ago, it did so with the purpose of offering this popular spa ghetti and chicken year-round so the public wouldn’t have to wait a whole year.

Some have wondered, does the Venesian Inn use Great-Grandma Mary Granata’s original recipe?

“I can’t prove it, but as far as I know, yes. This is the way she made it,” Bowen answers. “As far as I know everything is still the same.” Without giving away any secrets, Bowen reveals that everything in the restaurant is homemade. “We still roll out our dough every day to make our pasta. It’s made just like regular egg noodles but it’s just… you know, when you care about something we’re just going to put a little more love into it, I guess.” Also, garlic. Bow en says they use lots of garlic.

His great-aunt Alice Granata took over the restaurant early on. “She was a pistol,” Bowen recalls. “She just came in saying, ‘Hey, this is what I can get. We’re going to fry up some chicken.’” In 1947, flying in cal amari from Italy for a more traditional Ital ian dish was impossible, so she went with what was easily accessible in the Ozarks –chicken – and the rest is history.

Then & now. Photos courtesy of Venesian Inn.
54 Tickets on sale now at North Little Rock Airshow October 21-22, 2022 nlrairshow.com After a four-year hiatus, the North Little Rock Airshow is back with performances by the world’s finest: • Display team • Mini jet • Drones • Jet truck • Parachute team • Military aircraft • Scale models • And much more! Follow us on Facebook: @NLRAirshow



aymag.com55 Now Accepting Reservations for Short Term Rehabilitation and Long Term Care
schedule a tour before admission, call René at 479-831-6518.
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AP ASHTON PLACEASHTON PLACE HEALTH & REHABILITATION, LLCHEALTH & REHABILITATION, LLC Now Accepting Reservations for Short Term Rehabilitation and Long Term Care
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Big Bad Breakfast Ben Brainard with FACE BEHIND THE PLACE:

One restaurant, three words, several locations across the nation: Big Bad Breakfast. The popular breakfast destination has locations pitched across the South, but has only re cently set up camp in The Natural State, officially opening its doors to its Little Rock location earlier this summer.

Big Bad Breakfast is best known for the experience it offers at all of its locations, and Owner Ben Brainard, in partnership with John Currence, has created a breakfast experience like no other in Little Rock. The breakfast joint may have opened in 2022 in Arkansas, but Currence, a James Beard Award-winning chef, founded Big Bad Breakfast back in 2008 in Oxford, Mississippi.

And while the inaugural location is in Mississippi, Brainard said that the food is heavily influ enced by New Orleans-style cooking, where the chef behind the restaurant was born and raised.

Chef Currence has said that food is as much a part of life as air or water in New Orleans, there fore, food was part of everything he and his family and friends did.

“[We] set out to bring the best breakfast place to Arkansas. Big Bad Breakfast really focuses on big, hearty meals with big, bold flavors,” Brainard says, adding that the food at Big Bad Breakfast focuses on classic breakfast foods, with New Orleans-style spins.

The menu for the Little Rock location is full of breakfast options, both sweet and savory. With options for skillets, eggs, pancakes and more, Big Bad Breakfast offers many of its classics – including its Big Bad Cold Brew, French toast and fried oyster scramble. While this is a breakfast stop above all

By Sarah Coleman // Photos By David Yerby

else, Big Bad Breakfast also serves lunch, offering salads and sandwiches.

According to Brainard, there is an option for everyone on the menu. His current favorite may be the veggie omelet with egg whites, but he also really enjoys the shrimp and grits.

“John Currence has to make the best shrimp and grits I’ve ever had,” Brainard says. “But, I also think – actually, I know – we execute omelets better than any other breakfast place. We’re very meticulous about pre paring them.”

Brainard also mentioned the breakfast spot’s small cocktail menu – perfect for brunch – with its specialty drinks such as the Breakfast Dude, made with Big Bad Cold Brew, cream, vodka and kahlua, or the Big Bad Bloody Mary, made with the house-made bloody mary mix. Also on the menu is Cathead Vodka, which comes from a distillery local to Jackson, Mississippi.

In addition to the breakfast margarita and freshly squeezed mimosa that are also offered on the short list of cocktails, Brainard decided to feature a rotation of a couple of local beer brews at a time. Currently featured brews include Flyway and Lost Forty Beer, and the breakfast joint has previously featured Ozark Beer Company brews as well.

“Arkansas breweries are just so incredibly good now, so we are plan ning to rotate brews from different local breweries,” Brainard says. “I’m also just so proud of all the people I get to partner with in the beerbrewing industry.”

Brainard also said he is working to create a couple of frozen drinks to serve in addition to the cocktails and brews that are currently offered.

As the operating partner, Brainard is heavily involved with creating the experience for the state’s only Big Bad Breakfast. In addition to getting things up and running, he worked to make the ambience of the

building reflect that of a classic, cheery, quaint, breakfast spot.

“It was really hard to imagine dim or dark lighting for a breakfast place, so I wanted to make sure it was bright and cheery, which I think is perfect for the morning time and waking up,” Brainard says.

He also said he wanted the location to be casual and very welcoming, which he believes he and his team have fully accomplished

“When people visit this location, they should expect a lot of energy and a lot of smiles,” Brainard says, adding that the BBB staff are some of the most gracious he’s ever worked with.

While Brainard has been in this profession for around 25 years, he said he was hesitant at first about helping with the first Arkansas loca tion. Before becoming a partner withBig Bad Breakfast, Brainard served as a partner for Yellow Rocket Food & Beverage Concepts, the sustain able food system that is responsible for Arkansas restaurants such as Big Orange and Local Lime, in addition to many other local favorites.

He explained that once the pandemic hit and the restaurant industry began changing rapidly, he realized how few authentic breakfast options there were to choose from in the state, and in seeing a need for qual ity breakfast, Brainard decided he wanted to partner with Currence in bringing BBB to Arkansas.

“New Orleans has a great breakfast spot seemingly on every corner, but there are so few to choose from here, in the city and the state as a whole,” Brainard says.

Brainard also explained that the choice to open in West Little Rock was very intentional and strategic.

“I love what places like The Root and At The Corner have done with creating breakfast options downtown – they’ve done a really good job covering the downtown area. I decided West Little Rock needed more

Big Bad Breakfast's omelets are a fresh fan favorite.

breakfast options,” Brainard explains.

Of course, starting a restaurant takes a lot of patience, and according to Brainard, the opening did not come without its challenges. As a breakfast destination, BBB is a quick-moving, fast-paced restaurant, and it opens early.

“We open at 7:00 a.m. and cooks are here by 5:00 a.m. We only have one shift since we close at 2:30 p.m.,” Brainard explains. “So, I like to say we require a different kind of human to work here. Finding people who really enjoy this schedule is at times challenging, but I really like how our staff has been coming together.”

However, with great food and a friendly staff, Brainard said the feedback from guests has been overwhelmingly positive since opening.

“We’ve just had so many guests have so many positive experiences already here at Big Bad Breakfast and it makes me so glad that I get the chance to help feed them,” he says.

All of which contributes to Brainard’s confi dence that the staff at Big Bad Breakfast are suc ceeding in being efficient and making sure guests have a good time as soon as they walk in the doors.

“My biggest wish is for customers to be ex cited to come here and that they leave having had a good time and great food,” he says, adding that guests can expect their experience to only get bet ter the longer they are in business.

Passionate about good breakfast and good cus tomer service, Brainard is excited to see where Big Bad Breakfast will go from here.

“Our customers mean the world to us and bot tom line, I want this to be a place where guests feel welcomed. I don’t want to ever rush anyone be cause at the end of the day, I want guests to know that they are welcome here for however long they want to be here,” he says. “I hope every guest gets to experience a good start to a fun day, here at Big Bad Breakfast.”

“My biggest wish is for customers to be excited to come here and that they leave having had a good time and great food.”

When considering a facility for short-term rehabilitation services, families want the best they can get for their loved ones, and they have to look no further than Superior Health and Rehab in Conway.

Our rehabilitation gym offers state-of-the art rehab and features interactive equipment to enable our licensed therapists to create a comprehensive therapy program designed to get our residents back to their prior functional level, regain their self-reliance and facilitate a return to home as quickly as possible.

60 625 Tommy Lewis Drive • Conway, AR• 501-585-6800 • superiorhrc.com
aymag.com61 Lakewood Health & Rehab 2323 McCain Blvd. North Little Rock 501.791.2323 L akewood Health and Rehab offers skilled professional care in a supportive and compassionate atmosphere. We invite you to experience the difference our facility has to offer from the moment you walk through our door. Call us to today to schedule your tour! Lakewood Health & Rehab 2323 McCain Blvd, North Little Rock • 501.791.2323 Lakewood Health and Rehab, LLC. FACILITY AMENITIES • State of the art Rehabilitation Gym • Physician Services 24/7 by Specialized Staff • 24-hour Nursing Services • Wonderful Activity Program • Beauty Salon Services • Daily Housekeeping and Laundry Services Lakewood Health and Rehab, LLC. offers an inhouse team of professionals providing specialty services to better serve the specific needs of our residents. Rehabilitative Services providing Physical, Speech and Occupational Therapy. Our team is passionate about bringing the latest programs and techniques to our patients. They utilize therapy modalities combined with a comprehensive therapy program for strengthening, balance training, pain reduction, wound healing, and increasing range of motion. • IV Therapy • Wound Care provided by our Wound Care specialists L akewood Health and Rehab offers skilled professional care in a supportive and compassionate atmosphere. We invite you to experience the difference our facility has to offer from the moment you walk through our door. Call us to today to schedule your tour! Lakewood Health & Rehab 2323 McCain Blvd, North Little Rock • 501.791.2323
akewood Health and Rehab offers skilled professional care in a supportive and compassionate atmosphere. We invite you to experience the difference our facility has to offer from the moment you walk through our door. Call us to today to schedule your tour! Lakewood Health & Rehab IN-HOUSE SPECIALTY SERVICES



One thing better than eating ice cream is eating really good ice cream — and one thing that’s even better is eating really good ice cream for a really good cause. One of the places you can do that is Simple + Sweet Creamery in Fayetteville, a small local business that handcrafts fine artisan ice cream and donates more than half of its profits to help ing feed hungry children in Northwest Arkansas.

Every small business has its struggles, its ups and downs, especially in the wake of the pandemic. The story of Simple + Sweet Creamery, however, is a particular ly chaotic and lucky one, a true success despite the odds. Co-founder Coleman Warren recently graduated from the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville and is a newlywed, so in many ways, his story is just begin ning. But the story of Simple + Sweet begins a few years prior, in 2019.

A native of Farmington, a suburb of Fayetteville, Warren and his now-wife, Bailee King, had joined a program with AmeriCorp VISTA that put them in Omaha, Nebraska, helping a food bank with its sum mer meal program.

“There’s a huge summer meal gap,” Warren explained, “especially in rural areas, kids will just go full days with no food.”

Their job was to help the kids come back “for more than just food,” making sure the kids had fun and getting to know them. But as he worked to help feed over 600 children a day, Warren began to realize that there were many more who were hungry and in need than just the ones he was seeing, and that his home state was worse off than Nebraska.

Arkansas has one of the worst rates of food insecurity in the country, with around 25% of the state’s children facing hunger, according to the Arkansas Foodbank, and that rate is even higher in rural areas.

“I started asking questions like, ‘Is poverty someone’s decision? What causes poverty, and how do you overcome it?’”

Warren decided in the end that it simply was not the fault of the children, and he became convinced that food is a right, not a privilege. From that point, he devoted his life to fighting hunger.

While in Omaha, he noticed something else: The local ice cream was unlike any he had ever had back home in Northwest Arkansas, as artisanal ice cream producers did not really exist in the area.

“I came home, and I was telling people about two things,” Warren said. “Food insecurity and how it’s a problem that we need to be working as a community to address, and this really good ice cream that I had and how I wish we had it in Fayetteville.”

There were already many great nonprofits in Northwest Arkansas, and Warren didn’t want to pull any resources away from them “for some vanity project.” So, he and his co-founder and best friend, Tanner Green, came up with Simple + Sweet Creamery instead, producing the artisan ice cream that Fayetteville lacked and forming an official partnership with the Northwest Arkansas Food Bank. So far, together, they have donated about 36,000 meals.

Warren and his team learned the art of fine ice cream from Neil McWilliams — former president of the North American Ice Cream Retailers Association, who at that time lived in Mammoth Spring, Ar kansas — and returned home with 36 gallons of homemade ice cream.

The team planned to launch Simple + Sweet in the summer of 2020, but, things did not quite go to plan.

“We had given away about six gallons on campus right before the pandemic hit. So now I’ve got 30 gallons of ice cream that I’ve got no idea what to do with, and they’re going to go bad if I don’t sell them within the next three months,” Warren recalled.

So, they bought some small paper containers, put stickers on them, and listed them online for local delivery. All 30 gallons were sold out within 24 hours.

Despite a promising start, with the pandemic in full swing, the Sim ple + Sweet team had to temporarily give up their dream of a brick-andmortar location, leaving delivery as the primary method of distribution.

Coleman Warren greets customers from Simple + Sweet's ice cream truck parked off of North College Avenue in Fayetteville.

As Warren readily admits, delivery is simply not the way people tend to or want to buy ice cream, but it was the only option they had.

There were other roadblocks to starting the ice cream business. To keep making the products, the team needed an ice cream machine, but a brand new one would cost $28,000. A blast freezer is another necessity but it would cost another $10,000 and was five months on backorder. Between all of this and the pandemic, Warren began to lose hope that Simple + Sweet Creamery would ever really happen.

Yet it seemed that luck was on their side, and the team managed to find the equipment they needed at a good price. They then rented a kitchen from the Farmington School District where they continue to make their ice cream.

Since Simple + Sweet’s humble beginnings, it’s gotten a lot of atten tion. In 2021, the team competed in the Arkansas Governor’s Cup Colle giate Business Plan Competition, which is only for Arkansas students. The small business came in first place, winning $15,000 in prize money, which was used to purchase a trailer. However, that became an ordeal when the delivery of the trailer was delayed by three months and then was finally delivered to Memphis instead of Fayetteville.

By then, the prime ice cream season of summer had passed entirely, leading to what Warren called “the rainiest October I’ve ever seen” ––hardly optimal conditions for an ice-cream truck.

But good luck came again in the spring. In March, the team won the Undergraduate Business Plan Competition, hosted by the University of Manitoba, winning $10,000 that helped make up for the losses caused by the food truck delay and allowed them to improve the trailer and hire new people. The team relaunched with the trailer in April and saw great success in going to events and bringing the ice cream to people, rather than having people come to the ice cream. That same month, the team was featured on a segment of "Good Morning America," which gifted Warren $5,000 and gave 20,000 pounds of food — which Warren said was the much more exciting part — to the Northwest Arkansas Food Bank.

Although the future is looking bright for Simple + Sweet Creamery, Warren is getting ready to pass the torch. For now, the Truman Scholar ship has taken him to Washington, D.C., for an internship with Grow ing Hope Globally –– an organization that, like Warren, is dedicated to fighting hunger across the world. As a result, he now just manages the bookkeeping for the company, while the new employees take care of the day-to-day business of making and selling ice cream. The Rhodes Schol arship will soon be taking Warren even further afield, as he and Bailee will be moving to England so he can attend graduate school at Oxford University. Warren will continue to be involved, but someone else will be running the show. His wife, who has been the company’s creative direc tor, is leaving the role to be taken over by her brother.

Simple + Sweet Creamery is planning to phase out online delivery in hopes of getting its ice cream stocked on grocery store shelves instead, and Warren still has a vision for a brick-and-mortar location someday. But for now, you can order a pint from the company’s website (simplesweet.com), if you’re within 10 miles of Fayetteville, or find where the food truck will be next.

The company’s open secret to delicious ice cream is using 14% butter fat content, making it far creamier than your standard ice cream. For tune favors the bold, and the team has certainly gotten bold with some of their ice cream flavors. Honey lavender is a staple of artisan ice cream shops, but Simple + Sweet has also made some more unusual things based on what happens to be in season, like blueberry and goat cheese or sweet basil and olive oil, which have proven to be great sellers. All the small business’ ice cream is handmade in small, four-gallon batches, using Highland Dairy milk and locally sourced ingredients, often from Fayetteville’s Farmers Market. The team slices the strawberries for their strawberry ice cream, and they crush the Oreos used in their cookies + cream. Everything is real and fresh. And most importantly, it all helps children in Northwest Arkansas. And it can’t be a guilty pleasure if it’s for such a good cause, right?

Warren decided in the end that it simply was not the fault of the children, and became convinced that food is a right, not a privilege.
Simple + Sweet was featured on Good Morning America in April 2022. Coleman Warren

Individual pints can be purchased on Simple + Sweet's website for only $7 each.

Simple + Sweet with Fayetteville Mayor Lioneld Jordan

All photos courtesy of Simple + Sweet/ Bailee King

66 Greystone Nursing and Rehab, LLC 121 Spring Valley Rd., Cabot, AR 72023 (501)605-1545 | Fax: (501)605-1505 Tours available daily—call today to schedule yours! www.GreystoneNursingAndRehab.com We are an 80 bed facility with both private and semi-private rooms.  We offer Rehab services (PT, OT, and ST) as well as Long-Term Care.   5 STAR Ratings Skilled Nursing Facility • 2 Courtyards • Cable System • Modern Furnishings • Private & Semi Private Rooms • State-of-the-Art Rehab Gym • Restaurant Style Dining • Separate Rehab Dining • Hospice & Respite • Physical, Occupational, Speech Rehabs Offered Medicare • Private Pay • All Major Private Insurance

We are a skilled nursing facility with a state-of-the-art rehab center offering personcentered care in a quiet and serene setting.

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We are a skilled nursing center offering person-centered Awarded Bronze National 1092 West Stultz Road, Springdale Awarded Bronze National

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The BridgeWay is more than a hospital-it’s a place of hope and recovery from substance use disorders and mental illness. With the belief that each person can change and heal, we offer a program and treatment plan unique to each patient.

Our outpatient treatment represents our least restrictive and most flexible care options. Our Partial Hospitalization Program (PHP) and Intensive Outpatient Program (IOP) offer either day or evening schedules. These options allow patients to receive recovery-focused treatment that addresses a full range of psychiatric and addictive issues while attending to daily family and work obligations. In addition, our outpatient programs provide specialized group therapy for adults 18 and older with specific mental health or substance use disorder needs.

1-800-245-0011 thebridgeway.com 21 Bridgeway Road North Little Rock, AR 72113 Flexible treatment for an unforgiving disease Quality Care Rooted in Arkansas AFTERCAREIOP PROGRAMPHP PROGRAMINPATIENT CARE PHP vs IOP: What is the difference? While each program is different, they are similar in some ways Inpatient Care - Outpatient Care - Aftercare Continuum

Mocktail MO Advocates for Tasty Alcohol-Free Lifestyle

What started as a trip to the emergency room blossomed into an advocacy opportunity for Mocktail MO.

MO shares that when she had just a little to drink up until a few years ago, her migraines were unbelievable. Sometimes she would be sick for days.

“I’m not talking after binge drinking,” she says. “I’m talking after one drink or even half a drink.”

The last alcoholic drink MO ever had was an Old Fashioned one evening in 2019.

“It was one drink. The next day I woke up in Urgent Care.”

MO was told by doctors that she had developed an alcohol intolerance. This event was the catalyst for MO, who was on the brink of uncharted advocacy work.

“I started looking for alcohol-free options downtown three years ago, and there really wasn’t much there. I went to the Fold and talked to the bartender there, and she ever so kindly made all of these mocktails because she wanted to be creative and thought that it was an exciting idea. We tried the mocktails and realized they were delicious. And that was the beginning.”

The next few years would be full of research, contacting bars and restaurants and friends, and trying recipes and con coctions. “Mocktail MO” as MO calls herself and goes by publicly, was born. MO began to advocate for alcohol-free beverage options and chronicled her journey and “mocktail” recipes on her blog, Mocktailmo.blog, which began to pick up steam. MO calls her followers Mocktailians. Her Instagram, Mocktail. mo, has also grown in popularity.

While many viewed the pandemic as a closed door, MO had a different per spective.

“The door wasn’t just opening for me: the wall was exploding open because I had access to people online around the world.”

MO made it her mission to meet the people around the country and the world who had already dabbled in the art of mocktails and share this information out in the open.

“These mocktails taste good. Not just good, but like alcohol. I realized that this is actually kind of fun and definitely worth a try. I realized I needed to bring this out into the mainstream.”

MO shares that over the years, she’s begun cultivating a follow ing on social media, in addition to making media appearances to draw attention to the validity of alcohol-free options.

“I’ve done some morning shows here and in Fayetteville and made a lot of connections with movers and shakers throughout the industry. My wish for Arkansas is to inspire one of the local brewers to create an alcohol-free beer.”

MO with participant at mocktail class in Dallas.




2oz Ritual Rum alternative

1 oz Sobreo Star Anise

1/2 oz. Dhos Orange

1/2 lime squeeze

Top off with Q Hibiscus Ginger Beer


2 oz of alcohol-free tequila

A dash of grapefruit juice

1/2 a lime

Grapefruit Topo Chico

Rim glass with salt and chili lime spice from Trader Joe’s

MO is happier than ever.

MO acknowledges, though, that this advocacy doesn’t come without pushback or questions. Many individuals recovering from substance abuse may find the taste of mocktails too familiar to turn to. Others may find the alcoholic-free option to be an attack on their drinking preferences. MO acknowledges that this advocacy work has an emotional component that makes it hard. Opportunities, therefore, come after MO, and not the other way around.

“My door is open – that’s sort of been my approach to all of this. I’m not here to persuade people. This is for a lot of people, and I understand that this isn’t for everyone. My story is a health choice. If I can make it easier for people who are sober and want to try a mocktail and it doesn’t feel danger ous to them to do that, and it helps, I’m really happy.”

MO takes comfort in knowing that the mocktail industry is growing into something to be appreciated and not just offered. She hopes that as the mocktail movement picks up speed, the stigma around alcoholic and nonalcoholic beverages will decrease enough to make individuals more comfortable no matter which drink they pick.

“There are a lot of people and places around town that have alcohol-free drinks, and that’s encouraging to me. My next step is to encourage them to invest in more products like that,” she says. “People are surprised that the things end up tasting worthy of the word cocktail. A lot of people think of juice and club soda. In many places, it started that way and developed into something more complex.

MO hopes that the complexity continues, bringing out the potential and the flavor of the alcohol-free beverage industry.

Equal parts Heineken Zero and San Pellegrino Limonata MO at the holiday "nog-off"

When you walk into the Robinson Nursing & Rehabilitation Center you will feel a comfortable atmosphere different from any other facility you have visited. We feature tall ceilings and an open floor plan. We have a lovely dining room and a covered outdoor patio area.

When you walk into the Robinson Nursing & Rehabilitation Center you will feel a comfortable atmosphere different from any other facility you have visited. We feature tall ceilings and an open floor plan. We have a lovely dining room and a covered outdoor patio area.

We specialize in short-term rehabilitation and long-term care services. The short-term rehabilitation area has its own dining area and day room. From the moment you enter our facility, we want you to experience the difference our facility has to offer. From our light-filled day areas to our beautiful outdoor areas, we want you and your loved one to feel comfortable and safe when staying with us. You will also notice the pride we take in our facility by keeping our building sparkling clean from the inside out.

We specialize in short-term rehabilitation and long-term care services. The short-term rehabilitation area has its own dining area and day room. From the moment you enter our facility, we want you to experience the difference our facility has to offer. From our light-filled day areas to our beautiful outdoor areas, we want you and your loved one to feel comfortable and safe when staying with us. You will also notice the pride we take in our facility by keeping our building sparkling clean from the inside out.

Our team is dedicated to providing a safe and comfortable environment. Robinson Nursing and Rehab offers modern conveniences in a gracious setting. We provide daily planned activities led by certified activity directors, like social events and outings and pastoral services with spiritual care for all religions. We strongly encourage family participation in group activities, meals and celebrating family birthdays and special days.

Our team is dedicated to providing a safe and comfortable environment. Robinson Nursing and Rehab offers modern conveniences in a gracious setting. We provide daily planned activities led by Certified Activity Directors, like social events and outings and pastoral services with spiritual care for all religions. We strongly encourage family participation in group activities, meals and celebrating family birthdays and special days.

To help you plan your visits, we provide a monthly event calendar and a monthly meal planner. Robinson Nursing and Rehab does not have set visiting hours. We view this facility as the “home” of each resident.

To help you plan your visits, we provide a monthly event calendar and a monthly meal planner. Robinson Nursing and Rehab does not have set visiting hours. We view this facility as the “home” of each resident.

We try our best to communicate with patients and families to help alleviate the anxiety that accompanies this journey. Our team of nurses, therapists and support staff work closely together to develop a plan based on the individual needs of each person. We recognize that rehabilitation involves not only the patient, but the entire family. 501.753.9003

We try our best to communicate with patients and families to help alleviate the anxiety that accompanies this journey. Our team of nurses, therapists and support staff work closely together to develop a plan based on the individual needs of each person. We recognize that rehabilitation involves not only the patient but the entire family.

501.753.9003 • 519 Donovan Briley Boulevard, NLR • www.robinsonnr.com
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• 519 Donovan Briley Boulevard, NLR • www.robinsonnr.com
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You must approve this artwork before production will begin. Send approval with order number to service@moxyox.com Salem Place NURSING & REHABILITATION, INC 2401 Christina Lane | Conway, Arkansas 72034 | Phone: 501.327.4421 | Fax: 501.329.8997 www.salemplacerehab.com | We accept: Medicaid, Medicare, Private Pay. Salem Place offers Memory Care for your loved one with cognitive decline, dementia or Alzheimer’s, including dedicated male and female units. • Dedicated Male and Female Memory Care Observation Units • Proactive approach • Person-centered • Focus on strengths vs. individual decits
2.1 | 1.16.20

Daze 2022 Dog

Lucy at UAMS

A Dog’s Life

If there’s something better than kicking back with your best four-legged buddy, I don’t know what it is. Our three fluffers – Tango, Cash and Hootie – are happy just to have me come through the door, especially if I am bearing takeout or headed for the backyard grill. They haven’t quite got to the point of bringing me a cold one from the fridge, but they’re working on it.

I have dog trainer friends who tell me no matter what I see in our dogs’ eyes, they don’t love me back in the human definition of the word, nor do they feel shame or sorrow or elation the same way a person does. That may be technically true, but there are a lot of truths in life I choose to ignore and from the looks of things, I’m not alone.

According to PetPedia.com, 63.4 million Americans own a dog and of these, 96% regard the pooch less as a pet and more as a member of the family. It’s this kind of widespread devotion that inspired Elizabeth Michael to co-found Bark Bar five years ago and grow it into what it is today – the most happening dog spot in Little Rock.

“I’ve never been around a more passionate group of customers,” she says. “People who are dog people are the most passionate group of people I’ve ever met. It’s not like they’re just customers, they’re much more than that. Everyone’s really happy.”

Bark Bar isn’t the first or only pet-friendly restaurant in Central Arkansas but is the first and most successful venture of its kind, an estab lishment that so blurs the line between dog park and bar and grill, even Michael can’t really pin down what to call it.

“If you were to ask the State of Arkansas, we’d be a restaurant that serves alcohol,” she says. “But we are for and foremost for the dogs. The primary use of our space is dog centric. People can order food and drink at the win dow and bring it to their table and enjoy it, but we designed Bark Bar with dogs in mind first.”

One look at the layout of Bark Bar tells you what you need to know – 6,000 square feet of indoor-outdoor space that’s completely off-leash. Once through the double-gated entrance, dogs are allowed to roam freely throughout.

“It’s super open for dogs to run and play,” Michael explains. “We have Bark Rangers on duty, but we don’t try to throttle the dogs’ enthusiasm. If the dogs get the zoomies and run all around in circles, that’s fine.”

Friendships are formed at the Bark Bar.

Order Up !

The menu is also a cross-species affair with treats for both the hounds and their humans. Michael highly recommends the Spaniel Sundae (peanut butter and whipped cream) especially with a little calming CBD thrown in. For people, she considers the Dogpile Na chos a must-try, washed down with Poodle Punch.

All patrons are served with a smile, but don’t be sur prised if your hound gets one just a little brighter.

“All of our Bark Rangers know all the dogs’ names and do not know any of the humans’ names,” Michael says. “They’re like, ‘Biscuit’s mom came in.’ They have no clue what the human’s name is. Honestly, I think everyone likes it that way.”

Across the river in North Little Rock, one of Arkansas’s oldest brew eries is similarly gonzo for canines. But then what did you expect, con sidering Diamond Bear Brewery lies in the heart of Dogtown, as NLR

has long been known.

Owner Russ Melton said the company began allowing customers’ dogs after moving across the river from the original location to the new brewery and restaurant, the Diamond Bear Tap Room and Pub, in 2011.

“We really didn’t have much of a patio at the other place. We have our ‘petio’ now,” he explains. “I think having dogs here adds to the ambi ance, myself. They’re part of their family, so for customers to be able to bring their dogs to a dog-friendly environment, it’s a plus.”

Common sense reigns on the petio – patrons are asked to bring just one pooch per person, keep them on leash and to only bring dogs that do well around others.

“We don’t like aggressive dogs; if the dog doesn’t like to be around people or other dogs, then I’d probably discourage bringing them,” Melton says. “We’ve had very, very few issues, but every once in a while, we’ll have one. One dog didn’t like the other dog growling at him and snapped at it or something like that.”

There’s nothing on the menu specifically for dogs, but good boys and girls can still get a nice reward thanks to Diamond Bear’s recent addition of barbecue to the fare. If a rib bone or a morsel of pulled pork happens to make its way under the table, well, finders keepers.

Even more dressed-up places in town, such as Red Door Restaurant, have recently turned on to being pet-friendly. Actually, that’s not entire ly true – Red Door has welcomed fluffers pretty much since it opened ten years ago, it’s just that generally only the most die-hard regulars know about it.

All patrons are served with a smile, but don’t be surprised if your hound gets one just a little brighter.

“I can’t remember when we didn’t allow pets,” says Mark Abernathy, owner and legendary Little Rock restauranteur. “We just do a lousy job of letting people know about this.

“I don’t know how we came about it. We had some customer call years ago and say, ‘Can we bring our dog?’ And I said, ‘Sure, why not?’”

Abernathy puts out water for the pups, which are allowed on the front patio, and notes there’s a patch of grass nearby for Scout to stretch his legs. From there, it’s all about manners and consideration to others.

“Before bringing my dog for the first time, I think the first question I would ask myself would be would my dog be welcome in my friend’s home?” Abernathy says. “The second would be is my dog OK if there is another dog around? Other than that, that’s probably it.”

Abernathy said Red Door’s drink menu is as well-kept a secret as the pet policy, especially when it comes to wine prices, which are among the lowest in town. As far as the food, diners should notice a distinct connection between Red Door and Loca Luna, Abernathy’s other res taurant right across the parking lot, both in quality as well as variety.

“People ask what kind of food we serve and I tell them ‘schizophren ic’,” he says with a laugh. We set the menu up with stuff where it is almost impossible not to find something that you like. It’s not all Mexi can, it’s not all Italian, it’s not all steaks. It is impossible for you to look at the menu at either one of these restaurants and not find something that you like. So, it’s a great place to bring guests.”

Especially, Abernathy said, guests that live for belly rubs and ear scratches.

“We’ve just never really had any problems. I can’t think of an incident where we had to make somebody take their dog home,” he explains. “But then, I’m a dog guy. I believe you give dogs the benefit of the doubt.”

Bark Bar

1201 South Spring Street, Little Rock, 501.295.3989 barkbar.com

Diamond Bear Brewery, Taproom & Pub 600 N Broadway Street, North Little Rock 501.708.2739 diamondbear.com

Red Door Restaurant

3701 Cantrell Road, Little Rock 501.666.8482 reddoorrestaurant.net

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You will need

Peanut Butter Dog Treats

Your dogs will love to get their paws on these treats! And don’t be afraid to try one for yourself. These treats are easy to make and safe for pups and humans. They have been tested by both and were approved. Store them in the fridge to make them last longer.


1. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper and preheat oven to 350 degrees. 2. Combine flour and eggs in a bowl. Add peanut butter, honey and water. Stir until dough is stiff.

3. On a lightly floured surface, roll out dough until it’s about ½ inch thick, then cut out shapes.

4. Press holes into the treats using a fork. Bake for 18-20 minutes, or until golden brown.

5. Let the treats cool then lay out on wax paper before applying drizzle.


1. In a bowl, microwave peanut butter and coconut oil for about 30 seconds and stir.

2. Drizzle treats with a spoon or by cutting a small hole in the corner of a sandwich bag.

INGREDIENTS 1 cup xylitol-free creamy peanut butter 2 eggs 2 ½ cups whole wheat flour 1 tablespoon honey
cup water Rolling pin Parchment paper Cookie cutters of your choice OPTIONAL DRIZZLE: 1 ½ tablespoons coconut oil ¼ cup peanut butter
*Recipe adapted from Cookie Dough and Oven Mitt

You will need

Gourmet Almond Butter Dog Biscuits

Treats don’t have to be expensive, but to be gourmet, they should be made with simple, high-quality ingredients. These almond butter biscuits require only simple ingredients and come together in less than an hour! Be sure to ask your veterinarian before giving your pet a new treat to make sure they’re safe for your furry friend.


1 cup whole wheat flour

½ cup plain oats, old-fashioned or quick-cooking (not instant)

¼ cup dry milk powder, non-fat

1 egg

½ cup plain creamy almond butter, salt-free and sugar/ xylitol-free


1. Heat oven to 300 degrees and line a large cookie sheet with parchment paper.

2. Whisk together the flour, oats, and milk powder in a large mixing bowl.

3. Using a rubber spatula or a stand-mixer, beat the egg and almond butter into the flour mixture until crumbles form. Add ¼ cup cold water and beat until the dough comes together. You may need to add a little more water if the dough is still dry and crumbly.

4. Roll out the dough to ¼-inch thick and cut out biscuits with a cookie cutter or the rim of a cup.

5. Transfer the biscuits to the cookie sheet and bake for 45-60 minutes until firm and crisp. Use a paper towel to blot away residual oil, if any, and set aside to cool.


Diving into Dog OWNERSHIP

If you’re reading this, you’ve probably got lots of great friends and family members. Work is going well and your hobby is flourishing. But, in spite of this, something seems to be missing. And that something has four legs. Dogs have been considered “man’s best friend” since the era of cave-dwelling and can easily bring joy to the lives of their owners. Just waking up in the morning to a smile on a furry face can start the day off right. But what are some things that you need to consider before getting a fuzzy friend?


Shelters are full right now as families struggle economically, so a shelter is a great place to pick out your new best friend. But keep in mind that many shelters charge an adoption fee to cover the cost of caring for the animal that you’re adopting, in addition to keeping the lights on. Sometimes this adoption fee can cost as much as $300 and still not include the cost of vaccinations, a veterinary exam and spaying or neutering.


Many families gave up their pets as the pandemic waned and they returned to work – they suddenly no longer had the time to care for and play with their dog. Dogs need more than 10 minutes of attention a day

for potty breaks. Dogs need walks, play time, snuggle time and other interactions to let them know that they’re loved and to exercise their bodies and minds.


Depending on your dog’s age and behavior, they may need profes sional training to hone their manners. This takes time and money, in ad dition to traveling to a training facility and continuing training at home.


Depending on how big or small your dog is, you’ll need to make sure they have enough space to run and jump and fetch their favorite toy. If you don’t have a yard (fenced in or otherwise), it’s a good idea to look


into local dog parks, grassy areas and outdoor trails for your pup to sniff around and greet other pups!

CoolWag, a pet boarding service in Northwest Arkansas is one place that provides these essential resources and more. The locally owned dog gy daycare and boarding hotel sits on five acres in Bentonville, allowing plenty of space for your little ball of energy to run wild. And when it’s time to settle down, CoolWag provides top-notch positive reinforce ment training services via a games-based approach which uses sciencebased practices, combining Pavlov’s Classical Conditioning and Skin ner’s Operant Conditioning. If that sounds really cool and advanced, it’s because it is. Their innovative training services are second to none.

In fact, Heather Wegner, CPDT-KSA, professional dog train er and owner of Cool Wag, recently achieved advanced professional certification by the Certification Council for Professional Dog Trainers. This achieve ment makes her 1 of only 5 people who have reached this level of dog training certifica tion throughout Ar kansas, Oklahoma and Missouri.


You wouldn’t want to go months without a bath and a good brush, and your dog wouldn’t want to either. Dogs need to be bathed, brushed and trimmed regularly in order to stay clean, healthy and comfortable.

And for the pups who prefer the lap of luxury, CoolWags offers state-of-the-art spa services. That’s right – “spa.” This goes above and beyond a garden hose spray down on the back deck.

“We are proud of our baths. We have invested in some new gadgets that get the pups so sparkly clean, we’ve heard reports that they smelled good for over a week.”

CoolWag’s unique doggie spa experience, called Thera-Clean, is a treatment with tiny bubbles that help get rid of harmful bacteria and yeast in the dog’s coat. Their spa services focus on the all-around health of the dog, not just the way they look, offering a more holistic experience.


Just as we humans must prepare for the inevitable, one thing pet owners have to prepare for is vet bills. Sometimes life happens and you may have to take your pup to the vet. (Dog forbid!)

Dr. Brian Peters with Lake Hamilton Animal Hospital in Hot Springs shares some advice about financial preparation for a pup.

“The most common thing I see when I get a new owner who’s never had a pet before is that they don’t think about puppies getting five sets of vaccines when they first start out. They might tell me, ‘I just spent all this money on adopting a dog, and now I don’t have money to get all these vaccines.’

We think all of these vaccines are important for dogs to have. Addition ally, heartworm and tick prevention in Arkansas is 12 months because of the weather. People have to account for that, too.”

Dr. Peters also reminds pet owners that depending on their dog’s coat length and texture, they might need regular grooming every six to eight weeks as well.

Additionally, Dr. Peters acknowledges how expensive it can be to adopt a pupper – so he tries to work with patients financially and pay it forward.

“I have two practices in Hot Springs, and I think a lot about people adopting and rescuing pets. I discount some services to encourage peo ple to do that. There are so many pets that need adopting and if you tell me that, I’ll give you a free exam and try to give you some free products,” he says. “Ask your vet if they’ll discount your services if you’re adopting a pet. It’s a ‘pay it forward’ thing, and I try to help pay it forward as a business owner.”


Every doggo needs plenty of food, toys and treats to make sure they live the happiest, healthiest lives possible. Keep in mind that toys don’t last forever and might need to be frequently replaced depending on how energetic your fuzzy buddy is. Pet beds for your dog to lounge on are great, too!

When it comes to food, some dogs might have dietary restrictions or other health issues that can be addressed with special food, so keep this in mind when adopting a four-legged friend. And don’t forget the Milkbones!

Heather Wegner is a professional dog trainer and co-owner of Northwest Arkansas’s CoolWag doggy daycare.
86 11827 Maumelle Blvd. • North Little Rock mydoggiespa.comThe Doggie Spa 501.753.2211 Thank You For Voting Us One Of The Best in Arkansas!

Order fun reads about dogs by an author who knows dogs

Certified with the National Association of Dog Obedience Instructors, Little Rock’s Pat Becker produced and narrated the award-winning series “The World of Dogs: Biography Series” for the Public Broadcasting Service. Past was host in Oklahoma City for a number of years for two television shows called “Dog Talk” and a radio show called “Speak.”

Dog ownership and its responsibility have been an ongoing project and passion for this active owner of a variety of dogs. Pat produces the website DogTalkTV.com, a site to help dog owners better understand, care for and appreciate their pets. Her illustrated books on various breeds are meant to both entertain and educate.

Order your autographed book today online at:

A Pawsibility? Dog Insurance —

The popularity of pet insurance has skyrocketed over the last decade. But is it for you?

Dr. Brian Peters with Lake Hamilton Animal Hospital in Hot Springs shares his perspective on dog insurance.

“In the 22 years that I’ve been out of vet school, insurance is becoming more popular in the pet community,” says Dr. Peters. Pet insurance has become so popular that it’s hard to pick one company over another.

“Purebreds are more likely to have issues based on their genetics, so insurance is most helpful for them,” he explains.

It’s important to remember that, unlike human insurance, pet insurance doesn’t have a co-pay: In other words, you pay for veterinary procedures out of pocket, then pet insurance companies pay you after the fact.

However, if you have an expensive pet or multiple pets, pet insurance can be a relatively inexpensive solution to fees that might otherwise add up quickly.

When shopping around for pet insurance, it’s important to take note of how much you’ll be paying for insurance, what procedures the insurance will cover and whether these procedures will be covered partially or fully. Additionally, consider the likelihood of your pet needing any of these procedures in the future.

Some are easier to predict than others. For example, if your pet has already been spayed or neutered, they won’t need that procedure done again.

Otherwise, if you don’t fit some of the criteria above and your pet seems relatively healthy, it may be more economically feasible to save money for a pet emergency, as opposed to paying for insurance that you may never use.

Dr. Brian Peters is Chief Veterinarian of Lake Hamilton & Hot Springs Animal Hospitals. Peters grew up in Sherwood, Arkansas, and has loved animals since he was a child. He made the decision to become a veterinarian after working as a kennel assistant in high school. He is a graduate of the University of Central Arkansas and the Tuskegee University School of Veterinary Medicine.
Dr. Brian Peters

PAWS in PRISON Provides a Second Chance

lthough the need for animals in shelters and rescues to go to loving homes is always urgent, it is helpful for everyone involved if these animals can be trained before being adopted. Of course, the resources to make that happen aren’t available to shelters and rescues. That’s where Arkansas Paws in Prison comes in. The 501(c)(3) nonprofit program of the Arkan sas Division of Correction has combined resources to allow rehabilitating inmates the opportunity to give shelter and rescue dogs a second chance in life, just as they have been given.

Arkansas Correctional Program Helps Inmates and Rescued Dogs with Rehabilitation A

Arkansas Paws in Prison is based off of a program offered by the Missouri De partment of Corrections called Puppies for Parole. Schilden said that when re searching programs of this sort, the Arkansas Board of Corrections toured facilities in Missouri that participated in the program and were blown away by what they saw. Now, Paws in Prison, like Puppies for Parole, is making a huge difference and has reduced the number of dogs

Photo courtesy of Paws in Prison

euthanized and living in animal shelters.

Victoria Vander Schilden, executive director for the Arkansas Paws in Prison Foundation, works to develop and maintain the program as a successful rehabilitation and training program for everyone involved through rehabilitating inmates who qualify for the program while si multaneously helping rescue dogs and training them in basic obedience.

According to Schilden, this training covers all things needed for the dogs to pass the Canine Good Citizen test from the American Kennel Club. According to the AKC, the Canine Good Citizen Program is recognized as the gold standard for dog behavior. The program includes potty training and crate training in addition to other common obedi

ence training objectives.

While basic obedience training is re quired, Schliden says that some of the inmates and dog teams choose to par ticipate in more advanced training. In fact, Arkansas Paws in Prison trained Vessel, a star student in the program, to be able to detect water leaks. Vessel currently works with Central Arkansas Water.

There have been many other proven benefits to the program, including the ability for the dogs to become better suited for adoption as a result of being trained to be loving and obedient. Accord ing to the Division of Correction, when dogs have been properly socialized and trained, their chances of being adopted and not returned to a shelter improved dramatically.

However, Schilden explained that while there are so many dogs in need of training from partner shelters and rescues, not every dog is suitable for living in the correction facility. Since the dogs live in close proximity to other dogs and people, the dogs who enter the program have to behave well around people and other dogs. According to Schilden, the dogs are with their trainer all the time, train ing for approximately four to six hours a day.

“It’s a win-win all around – a win for the inmates because they get to learn marketable job skills, and they learn compassion through be ing able to help give dogs a second chance at life. It’s great for the dogs because they get the training they need,” Schilden explains. “It is such a privilege to see what this program does to benefit everyone involved.”

Seven correctional facilities in Arkansas participate in the Paws in Prison program, and Schilden said many of these facilities have waiting lists for inmates who want to participate in the program. The program requires inmates who volunteer to have an incident-free disciplinary record for at least a year and have at least a year left of their sentence. As it takes a significant amount of time to train dogs, the inmates that are eligible to participate in the program are oftentimes serving longer sentences.

“At most facilities there are waiting lists full of inmates who really want to participate in this program. Really, they have to be able to stay out of trouble to stay in the program,” Schilden says.

According to the Division of Correction, Paws in Prison strives to be able to decrease recidivism rates – the rate at which convicted criminals reoffend. Since the program began in 2011, more than 1,900 dogs have been rescued, trained and adopted. The program has also been able to expand its capacity, fulfilling needs for vocational training for both male and female inmates.

Paws in Prison Provides a Second Chance The Division of Correc tion also says that many of the inmates who have trained dogs in the Paws in Prison program have been hired for animal-related jobs after parole. Among these vocations, many who participated in the program now work for partner rescues and shelters of Paws in Prison, as well as providing service dog training.

“In shelters and rescues, the rate at which dogs are being adopted has significantly slowed down recently,” Schilden says. “I want to encourage

Many of the inmates who have trained dogs in the Paws in Prison program have been hired for animal-related jobs after parole.

anyone who has a heart for rescue dogs to apply to foster or volunteer at these organizations.”

According to Schilden, the most important and helpful thing to pre vent shelters and rescues from being overfilled is to make sure you spay and neuter your pets.

The partner shelters and animal rescues of Paws in Prison include Last Chance Arkansas, Stone County Humane Society, Dogsamust, Jefferson County Humane Society and the Humane Society of Inde pendence County. According to Schilden, the partner shelters and res cues handle all of the adoptions, therefore, there is no generic adoption form to be found through the Division of Correction. If individuals find a dog they would like to adopt through the Paws in Prison program, the Division of Correction website explains the next step would be to reach out to the partner organizations for adoption proceedings.

There have been several success stories for both the trainees and trainers in the Paws in Prison program. Many of the dogs’ adoption stories can be found through the Department of Corrections website.

For those interested in supporting Paws in Prison, there are oppor tunities to donate to the program, buy from the foundation’s Amazon Wish List, or support the program simply by shopping on Amazon Smile – which is just like shopping on Amazon, but with an added bonus equal to 0.5% of eligible purchases going to Paws in Prison. In addition to these options, donations for the program can also be made through a mail-in check (which must be mailed to Arkansas Paws in Prison Foundation, 1302 Pike Avenue, Suite C, North Little Rock, Ar kansas 72114), stock, donor-advised fund designations, property, real estate, bequests and/or cryptocurrency via BitPay.

Photo courtesy of Paws in Prison Gunnar shaking hands with an inmate.

Inspiring T.A.I.L.S. at Arkansas Children’s Hospital


Whetherit’s assisting in first responder work, being a welcome addition to a family, or providing therapy services to patients in hospitals, dogs can bring positive experiences to so many. Arkansas Children’s hospital provides people with many different op portunities to volunteer, and all of its volunteer programs are centered around making sure kids and their families are well taken care of during their time in ACH’s care. One such program – T.A.I.L.S., which stands for Therapeutic Animal Intervention Lifts Spirits – is one that provides patients and their families the opportunity to play and interact with trained certified therapy dogs.

Erica Phillips, executive director of volunteer engagement at Ar kansas Children’s, is passionate about all volunteer opportunities at the hospital, including the T.A.I.L.S. program. According to Phillips, ACH currently has 31 Pet Partner teams that volunteer.

“The dogs and their handlers really bring so much joy to the patients and the families of patients at Arkansas Children’s Hospital,” Phillips says.

There are a number of ways that the therapy dogs and their handlers can get involved with providing positive experiences for the patients at ACH. For patients who are spending several nights in the hospital, a therapy dog can come visit. According to Phillips, some patients feel better by just having a therapy dog sit on their bed or in their room. Patients can talk to, pet and interact with the therapy dogs.

“Some patients just want to observe the dogs; some want to watch the dogs do tricks. Really, it can just help calm nerves and make kids and their families feel more comfortable,” Phillips explains.

While the Pet Partner teams spend time in the hospitals, they also go on clinic visits. Phillips said the teams can go and sit in the waiting rooms, allowing patients and family members the opportunity to walk into their appointments feeling less anxious.

“For our patients who are staying in the hospital we have the play room, Camp Wannaplay, where patients can come in and just love-on, interact and play with the dog,” Phillips says.

The therapy dogs serve as stress relief to the staff at ACH as well. According to Phillips, during the pandemic, teams have come in to visit with staff, nurses and providers for emotional rest. Phillips said that this proved to be really helpful to employees while times were uncertain.

T.A.I.L.S. dogs are certified therapy dogs – not emotional support animals – that come from Central Arkansas Pet Partners. The dogs and their handlers are well versed in educational training, skill sets and competency. The most important thing in qualifying to be part of the T.A.I.L.S. program is that the team is certified.

“Safety is our number one priority. We make sure that all of our Pet Partners teams are top-notch, with good hygiene and up to date on flea and tick prevention, as well as bathed frequently,” Phillips says.

Of course, volunteering is rewarding in general, Phillips adds. Mim Hundley and her dog, Homer, volunteer as a Pet Partners team at ACH, where they enjoy the time they spend brightening up other people’s days.

Hundley, like many other handlers, knew for a while that she wanted to train a therapy dog one day. In her final year before retirement, a dog who had journeyed a long distance, made his way into her life – and the rest is history.

“This is something I had wanted to do for over ten years, and a year before I retired, I was able to start training Homer,” Hundley says. “I had some friends find him in a Lowe’s parking lot in Greenville, Mississippi, and they picked him up. I met him and immediately thought he would be a good therapy dog.”

Homer, upon initial observation, was extraordinarily calm, but even tually became more active as he ate more and grew. Hundley explained that Homer was underweight when they first became acquainted, but after plenty cups of dog food a day, he finally reached the healthy size he was meant to be.

“Homer is the best. He gets along with everybody and he’s super friendly with other dogs too,” Hundley says.

Hundley and Homer have been a Pet Partners team since 2015 and originally started at the VA Hospital in North Little Rock. Hundley said that she and Homer have loved every bit of getting to volunteer as a Pet Partners team.

“I was so excited to get to volunteer at ACH and I love what we get to do as volunteers,” Hundley says.

Homer and Hundley test every two years to make sure they are meeting necessary standards as a team. According to Hudnley, therapy dogs are evaluated to make sure that they are gentle and friendly, with good manners and temperament.

Pet Partners of Central Arkansas works to register nine different species to be certified therapy animals, including dogs, cats, horses and donkeys, guinea pigs, rabbits, domestic rats, birds, miniature pigs and llamas and alpacas. According to Pet Partners, there are specific limita tions to registering a pet such as age, length of time in the home and more, which can be found on its website, petpartners.org.

To become a Pet Partners team in Central Arkansas, there are three steps handlers and animals must take. The first step is the handler’s workshop, which is required for the handler either in-person or online. The second step is optional, but provides practice for handlers being evaluated with their animal. The third and final step is an evaluation.

Pet Partners of Central Arkansas sponsors Handler Workshops and Pet Partners Evaluations four times every year, and also offers practice sessions for teams prior to evaluation. For more information regarding Pet Partners of Central Arkansas, visit centralarkansaspetpartners.org.

As far as Phillips and the work she does overseeing volunteer efforts

for ACH, she believes that volunteer work is rewarding for all parties involved.

“Our organization does such a great job in providing good experi ences for patients and families. We do fun things to make the hospital experience as good as possible, and T.A.I.L.S. is a big part of that,” Phillips says, adding that kids are always delighted when they see the therapy dogs.

Phillips explained that many of the patients and their families ex perience a lot of really emotional times throughout treatment, meaning every moment counts.

“I love the fact that volunteers get to provide some joy in important and critical moments, because moments matter. When there’s a lot go ing on, the work we do can be part of moments that really matter,” Phillips says.

No matter what capacity in which volunteers are involved with ACH, Phillips said all of their volunteers make a huge difference.

“Whether people have time to [donate], or [lend] skills or special talents, there is a way for everyone to get involved with volunteering at ACH,” Phillips says. “We have “princesses” and musicians come in, we have people who greet patients in the waiting room, we have something for everyone.”

Phillips said that she loves to have conversations with others on how they can get involved with ACH. For those interested in volunteering in any aspect, visitarchildrens.org/support-us/volunteer-engagement/ volunteer-at-arkansas-childrens-hospital.

Stan Berry visits with a patient at Arkansas Children's

Central Arkansas Pet Partners provides animal-assisted intervention in stressful situations

LittleRock attorney Allan Gates, the president of Central Ar kansas Pet Partners, never expected to become a volunteer doing hospice work.

“It doesn’t sound like what you do for fun,” Gates says. “But I ended up shadowing Merry Zakrzewski while she was doing a dog therapy visit at the Arkansas Hospice Ottenheimer Inpatient Center at CHI St. Vincent. There was a young Black woman with an illness related to sickle cell anemia. She was unresponsive when we went in. Merry took her dog over and put his paw on the bed. The young woman’s mother moved the daughter’s hand over the dog. The young woman opened her eyes and smiled.

“There were tears all over. The visit really hooked me. I thought, ‘Man, if my dog, Lucy, can do that, I want to be a part of it.’ We have been going to Arkansas Hospice pretty much every Sunday since then.”

Lucy is a friendly, frisky dog when she is off work. But she is calm and quiet when she does animal therapy visits.

Photos courtesy of UAMS Central Arkansas Pet Partners President Allan Gates with Lucy

The dogs do all the work.

“The dogs do all the work,” Gates explains. “The mission of Pet Partners is to improve human health and well-being through the human-animal bond. It is a phenomenal ex perience to watch a really skilled therapy dog work. Some therapy animals are purebreds, and others are not. One of my favorite therapy dogs, Homer, is an absolute mutt rescued from a grocery store parking lot. He is awesome.”

Harriet Hawkins, director of volunteers at Arkansas Hospice, said when the dogs walk in the door, it is a joy to everyone — but es pecially to the families of the loved one who is dying.

“The patient may be asleep, but still knows that the dog is there,” Hawkins says. “The families know they are coming, and it gives them something to look forward to. The staff absolutely loves them coming in.”

Hawkins said they have operations in 43 counties, and pre-pandemic, had 14 different dog therapy teams visiting their facilities. The dogs have to be certified by one of the three national dog therapy organizations: Pet Part ners, Therapy Dog International or Alliance of Therapy Dogs.

In addition to hospice, pet therapy teams regularly visit patients at other medical fa cilities. It is something that brings joy to the teams and the patients they visit.

“It is something we all enjoy doing,” Gates says. “When COVID shut down the visiting, our members missed it. The dogs missed it, too. Talk to any of our members or the places we serve – it is all about the dogs. It is crazy how good they are about this.”

Central Arkansas Pet Therapy teams visit facilities such as Arkansas Children’s Hospital, the Arkansas Heart Hospital, the Easter Seals Youth home, and the Little Rock airport.

Pet therapy teams from Central Arkansas have done Animal-Assisted Crisis Response

work after traumatic events such as a mass school shooting in Franklin, Kentucky; the af termath of an on-campus suicide in Concord, New Hampshire; multiple tornado recovery scenes; and at the Office of Refugee Resettle ment’s Children’s Center for unaccompanied migrant minors near the southern border.

“When children cross the border without a family member or guardian, the Border Patrol takes them to this facility or another like it,” Gates explains. “We go in and visit with the kids. A lot of times the children are seemingly happy and normal. It was good to see how well cared for these kids were.

Mim Hundley and Homer pay a visit to a local elementary school.

You wouldn’t know that many had expe rienced real trauma. Some of the children were undoubtedly abused. They were all from Central America and had traveled a godawful distance without family. Some looked like kids you would want to hold their hand crossing a street, much less a continent. It is interesting to see Lucy work with those kids.”

Another place teams visit patients is at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences. UAMS Volunteer Coordinator Mattie Thack er said it is very moving to watch the teams work with patients.

When COVID hit, they were not allowed to bring pets into hospital rooms.

“We pivoted and started doing animal therapy for the staff exclusively,” Thacker says. “The staff was really stressed out from CO

VID and the staffing shortage. Just taking a break and petting the dog meant the world to them. It really helped with their stress levels and morale.”

There are about 15 different Special Pets Offering Therapy (SPOT) teams who volun teer at UAMS.

“You can really feel the difference when a therapy dog is there,” Thacker says. “They get right up on the beds, and patients pet them. Sometimes you can see their blood pressure go down. It especially benefits people who have been in the hospital a long time. A therapy dog can really make their day. They are tired of being in there, and it reminds them of their dog. They tell us all about their dogs at home. It is the same story over and over again. It is just an overwhelming emotional response.”

Lucy, a 9-year-old standard poodle, has something in common with sick patients. She was born blind.

Gates got a call that there were two blind puppies who were going to be put down unless they were adopted immediately. His daughter adopted one who regained her sight naturally. Lucy, on the other hand, had cataract surgery at 18 months old. She doesn’t have perfect vi sion but gets around normally.

“This is a great feel-good story where kids can hear she had an operation, and now she is fine,” Gates says. “Children can have con fusion about what is going on. When a dog is there that can do a few tricks and be pet ted, it totally changes things. Without a dog, I couldn’t help. I’m the facilitator. The dog does all the work.”

Livvy soaks up the attention at the Little Rock Marathon Expo Left: Mattie Thacker, UAMS volunteer coordnator Below: Gates and Lucy at work

It’s A Match

Little Rock Animal Village Helps Connect Available Dogs with Loving Owners

Whether you are able to adopt, foster or volun teer, there are many ways to get involved with helping animals in need. Little Rock Animal Village, along with Friends of the Animal Village – the 501(c)(3) nonprofit that supports the animal shelter – offers several ways for animal lovers to get involved with helping pets find forever homes.

Two volunteers at Little Rock Animal Village, Joanne Colebank and Stacy Simpson, also serve as board members for Friends of the Animal Village. They say that if someone sees a pet they would like to adopt, they can adopt in person from the shelter, and those interested in fostering pets can sign up with one of the rescue groups that works with the Little Rock Animal Village.

“Every year we see a lot of dogs come through here, but this year has been a particularly slow year in terms of pet adoptions,” Colebank says.

Colebank says some of the rescue organizations allow for pets in foster care to later be adopted by their caretaker, and some rescues will take care of transport. Regardless of the capacity at which an indi vidual wants or is able to get involved, Little Rock Animal Village can help decide which organization is best suited for each situation. Colebank also added that foster organizations help provide the fosters with everything they need to keep the pet in their home. For individuals wanting to foster with other animals in the home, these rescues can help find the best matches.

Colebank also wants to bring awareness not only to what rescues and shelters do to help animals in need, but also what pet owners can do to help alleviate the stress on organizations such as Little Rock Animal Village.

“Spaying and neutering is the best thing you can do to help alleviate the number of pets who need to be rescued,” Colebank says, adding that there are several low-cost options available at clinics, statewide, for sterilization services.

While Little Rock Animal Village helps a lot of dogs find loving homes, they do the same for cats. Right now, Little Rock Animal Village is also in need of foster homes for kittens. Colebank and Simpson are both currently fostering kittens. The Little Rock Animal Village provides kitten fosters with everything they need in order to foster kittens, and caretakers must live within the city limits of Little Rock.

If you’re looking for a furry companion, here are a few of the dogs available for adoption at Little For more information on how to get involved with Little Rock Animal Village, visit Friends of the Animal Village’s website. Rock Animal Village. (Note: Adoptions happen rapidly, so some of the dogs pictured may not be available following the publishing date of this article.)


Gunther (BOY)

Labrador Retriever mix

With striking looks, one electric blue eye and plenty of energy, this good boy still has the playfulness of a puppy.

Dottie (GIRL)

German Short-Haired Pointer

Graceful and giddy, this girl still has a lot of puppy playfulness and loves to smile.

Dane (BOY) Boxer mix

With all of the loveable quali ties of a boxer, Dane is play ful. And his brother, Gus, is also up for adoption.

We’re Brothers

Sam (BOY) Terrier mix

Motivated by a good dog bone, this boy is sure to make you smile with his friendly demeanor.

Gus (BOY) Boxer mix

Though slightly less en ergetic than his brother Dane, Gus is still super loving.

“Every year we see a lot of dogs come through here, but this year has been a particularly slow year in terms of pet adoptions.”

Smores (GIRL)

Shepherd mix

This shepherd mix is a total sweetheart and has the “blue steel” look on point with two different eye colors

Smokey (BOY) Silver Lab

The best way to describe this dude is “cool, calm and collected.”

Kathy Bates (GIRL) Lab/Pit bull mix

A curious girl, this playful dog is very observant, always keeping her ears raised.

Romeo (BOY)

With a smile like this guy’s, it’s no wonder he got the name Romeo! He is both charming and handsome.

Emily (GIRL)

As a young adult, Emily is not only very smi ley, but also incredibly sweet and happy.

“A dog doesn’t care if you’re rich or poor, educated or illiterate, clever or dull. Give him your heart and he will give you his.”

Brian (BOY)


Timmy (BOY) Pitbull

Sitting on command and motivated by treats, Timmy is a shelter favorite! Not only is he easily trained but he’s also incredibly polite.

Boxer With ample playfulness, Brian is a very good boy.
For more information on how to get involved with Little Rock Animal Village, visit Friends of the Animal Village’s website www.littlerockanimalvillage.org.
Malcolm (BOY ) Anatolion Shepherd Malcolm’s breed is known for its independence, and this dude is just that, while also being very chill. Wendy (GIRL) Lab Sweet, happy
smiley, Wendy loves
go on walks and play with a tennis ball.

and Their Owners,

Dogs, Get the Royal Treatment at Paws Mahal

Carol Culpepper and Hannah Howard pose with some adorable Paws Mahal guests.

Carol Culpepper has two great loves aside from her devout Christian faith: animals and Indian archi tecture. Since 2017, she’s combined the two by naming her dog training business “Paws Mahal” and decorat ing her Sherwood facility with elabo rate Indian stylistic touches.

Overseeing a staff of eight and boarding up to 40 dogs at a time as they undergo several weeks of training — in addition to working her magic inside pets’ homes — Culpepper is constantly busy with her canine clientele. Looking back over a lifetime of animal interactions, she shares the story of how it all came together.

“I went to East Africa when I was in college, and I was fascinated with the Indian architecture that was there,” Cul pepper recalls. “I just always had a flair for the domed buildings and the Taj Mahal. Aside from the Indian tapestries in my lobby and office, I also have an elephant statue from India outside keeping the gate shut.”

Culpepper had long trained dogs in her previous home in Florida before mov ing to Arkansas to care for her elderly mother. The seasoned trainer personally owns a Labrador mix and a Doberman Pinscher and maintains a large fenced-in yard for her canine pals to play and socialize with other dogs and to provide training in an outdoor setting.

Beyond owning lots of dogs throughout her child hood, Culpepper’s animal expertise extends from her earning a Bachelor of Sci ence in Zoology and Ani mal Behavior. She later be came a veterinary technician and worked with tigers in a “fun facility” for eight years. She has also trained horses throughout her life.

Culpepper jumped at the chance to open Paws Mahal, realizing she could merge her two biggest passions together while also helping dog owners across Central Arkansas have better, happier pets.

“I recognized and realized the great need that people have just for their pet dogs to have manners,” she says. “The typi cal things we do are things like dealing with dogs jumping on people to greet them, and dogs not coming home.”

Paws Mahal’s training programs are individualized for each dog based on their needs. Keeping in mind that many customers

are on a budget these days, Cul pepper tries to keep her prices reasonable and offers two-, three- and four-week pro grams for her canine charges.

“We get them on a sched ule and have a structured management of their day,” Culpepper explains. “And typi cally, we also offer day care here and boarding. So, all the dogs get on the structure and schedule. Just by being here and immersed in the structure is important for us.

“They thrive on knowing what to ex pect and what’s expected of them,” “For instance, what time their walk is, and then they have a rest period after their walk. They do well when the communication is clear, and the boundaries are very clear and patient.”

Another aspect that Paws Mahal deals with is dogs that bark constantly.

“I would have to say that the responsi bility of that lies on the home. It’s normal for a dog to act as a sentry, and then they get in a bad habit,” says Culpepper. “So, there’s a lot of little things that sort of go into forming that habit: boredom, exer cise, then with the absence of intervention by their owner to put an end to it, it just escalates and gets worse and worse. And they just get in a terrible habit of barking incessantly.”

Culpepper maintains a staff of eight, with three of them on-site at all times. Their dog limit is 40, most of which come in for pet day care from morning to evening at $24 per day. She explains that owners see the service as a necessity for their dogs to socialize and get exercise when they can’t personally invest as much time as they need in them.

Half-day care is $17, and a full day of care plus training/walking sessions is $70 per day. Boarding costs $35 nightly, if a dog weighs less than 20 pounds, and $45 if a dog weighs more. If owners add in training to the boarding costs, the price goes up to $75 per night. In-home consultations – which Culpepper personally handles – start at $150, and might cost more if the traveling distance is far, but there is no time restriction for the consultation.

“One thing that differentiates us from our day care is that it’s a calm and quiet environment,” Culpepper says. “We like to keep the dogs’ mindset in a home mode, and not in frenzied activity, because that’s a priority that really helps the dogs.

“I’d like to thank the Lord for giving us the inspiration and help to make this happen. That gives us the foundation for everything.”

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Motown! Motown! travel


there’s only one Morrilton in the whole country. Believe it or not, this Conway County community was very nearly named Moose town! More about that later.

Let’s begin with some tantalizing tidbits about the fascinating mu nicipality: It serves as the proud gateway to Arkansas’s first state park. The town is the home of one of the state’s most truly unique manufac turing operations. A local business produces the official ham and bacon of the Arkansas Razorbacks. One of America’s preeminent historians was a graduate of Morrilton High School. And Morrilton’s past in cludes one of the most notable political dynasties in the South.

Morrilton’s history can be traced back to Lewisburg, a steamboat landing on the Arkansas River that was first settled almost 200 years ago in 1825. Located about 50 miles upstream from Little Rock on the north bank of the river, the trading post was named after its founder, Stephen D. Lewis, and was a bustling town for decades, eventually claiming almost 2,000 residents. Some 80 businesses attended to the needs of the vibrant society, to include an assortment of stores, several saloons, a couple of hotels, two sawmills, a pair of gristmills, a flour mill, a cotton gin and an opera house. Lewisburg served as the Conway County seat from 1831 through 1850 (temporarily losing the distinc tion to Springfield) and then again from 1873 until 1883.

Progress did in Lewisburg. When the principals of the Little Rock and Fort Smith Railroad began surveying a route paralleling the Arkan sas River, they asked the leaders in Lewisburg for a financial contribu tion to help offset the costs of construction. This was right after the Civil War, and Lewisburg and its citizens were in bad financial shape. They declined. Two prominent businessmen, Edward Henry Morrill and James Miles Moose, stepped up and donated a tract of land about a mile north of Lewisburg for the new depot. Legend has it that the railroad’s first station agent flipped a coin to determine the town’s name. Mor rillton (eventually becoming Morrilton) won the toss over Moosetown. People and businesses slowly migrated from Lewisburg to the new site, and Morrilton assumed the role of Conway County seat in 1883. Over the years, Lewisburg gradually disappeared and all that’s left now are a few crumbling foundations.

It should be no surprise that Morrilton is chock full of significant buildings, with nearly two dozen structures listed on the National Regis ter of Historic Places. The Conway County Library (101 W. Church St.)

Motown! Motown!

is one of two “Carnegie Libraries” still operating in the state. The Pathfinder Club, a local women’s organization that had accumu lated a 1,600-volume collection of rare books from around the world, received a $10,000 Carnegie grant in late 1915 for a new library, and the imposing building was opened almost exactly one year later. Constructed of red brick and topped with a heavy, red tile roof, it still retains the original windows. A block or two away is the Conway County Courthouse (117 S. Moose St.), a handsome two-and-a-half story classical revival example dating from 1929-1930.

The restored Morrilton Railroad Station (on the tracks be tween Division and Moose streets) is home to the Morrilton Depot Museum and Genealogy Research Library. Open to the public from 10 a.m. through 2 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays, it houses a display of Native American artifacts, Civil War items and exhibits on early life in Conway County. Standing outside the building is a fine statue of former Gov. Winthrop Rockefeller, who spent many years south west of town at his ranch atop Petit Jean Mountain. Rockefeller made numerous lasting contributions to Morrilton, one of which was providing funds for Reynolds Elementary School, the latest in education and design in that era. And it was during his time on the Arkansas Industrial De velopment Commission that Rockefeller helped persuade Green Bay Packaging Company to locate a large mill outside Morrilton, a project that ultimately em ployed many area residents.

Another historic building, the old Co ca-Cola Bottling Plant (102 S. Crestliner St.), has undergone a major transforma tion: conversion into the Point Remove Brewing Company. Named after a creek that flows out of the Ozark foothills and into the Arkansas River near Morrilton, the brewery offers pizza, wine, a charcute rie board featuring a selection of Petit Jean meats and of course, a nice variety of craft beers. Three that you’ll want to sample in clude the Petit Jean Pilsner, the Conway County Cream Ale, and the Motown IPA (honoring the locals’ affectionate nickname for their beloved home town).

Petit Jean Meats is a big deal in Morrilton and has been for nearly a century now. Felix Schlosser, a Ger man butcher, immigrated in 1922 to Little Rock, where he lived for several years before moving to Morrilton in 1926 and opening a small meat market. The young sons of a cousin began working in the business and were in strumental in its evolution to the Morrilton Packing Company. In fact, that family — the Ruffs — now can claim four generations with the firm. In addition to its line of Petit Jean bacon, ham and sausage, the company’s 75 employees produce over 100 other products to include many private label items. And, of course, Petit Jean Meats has been an official sponsor of the Arkansas Razorbacks for nearly two decades.

Another big deal in Morrilton is the Rosewood Classic Coach firm. Richard Neal, a fourth-generation funeral director and embalmer from Brinkley, moved to Morrilton in 1988 to run a funeral home his family had purchased. A self-described car nut, Neal was always on the lookout for a “purpose built” funeral car, one carefully planned and manufactured to meet the unique needs of his industry. He found a like-minded individual in Max Prinzing, a

Minnesota entrepreneur who was building oneof-a-kind classic cars. Together, they created a custom hearse incorporating a timeless design.

Neal then acquired Prinzing’s company and brought it down to Morrilton, where its 27 em ployees create 20 to 22 units a year — and all are sold before they’re built. Soon to produce his 100th vehicle, Neal hopes to be manufacturing 48 hearses annually in the near future. Although many of his coaches wind up in the northeast, where the population density is higher, they can be found across the United States and in Australia, Colombia, Trinidad and even Nige ria. (Neal admits to some apprehension that this particular order was a scam, but it proved to be on the up-and-up).

Given the expectations of his clients, it’s no surprise that Neal is selective in who he hires to produce these extraordinary vehicles. His employees generally come to him with extensive body shop and hot rod shop ex perience. Under the handcrafted exteriors are General Motors products, making the vehicles easily serviceable. Power is pro vided by 430-horsepower performance engines coupled with 4-speed automatic transmissions.

These beautiful vehicles have caused some unanticipated problems, however. On occasion, drivers have been swarmed by curious onlookers, almost delaying their arrival at services. And Neal says it’s not uncommon for the clergy to have trouble luring friends and family of the deceased from the hearses to the funeral tents.

Morrilton Mayor Allen Lipsmeyer, now in his seventh year on the job, is es pecially appreciative of Morrilton Pack ing, Rosewood Coach and the other family-owned, privately held companies in town. “This core group is constantly contributing to our community,” he says. “They’re the ones who helped Morrilton recover from 1999 when the city lost 2,000 jobs.” That was the year when Levi Strauss & Company and Crompton Mills closed their factories in town.

Photo courtesy of ADPHT Statue of Winthrop Rockefeller outside Morrilton Depot Museum

When asked about projects in the works, Mayor Lipsmeyer mentions that the city is remodeling a bowling alley/skating rink that’s been closed for the past 13 years. The renovation of the eyesore will provide a great outlet for Morrilton’s kids. This redevelopment is a small part of the $800 million reinvestment in the town in recent years. “It’s our turn to grow,” Lipsmeyer says.

As you can imagine, Stephanie Lipsmeyer, interim direc tor of the Morrilton Chamber of Commerce and wife of the mayor, is proud of her community, noting that during the pan demic, the city’s sales tax revenues “were off the chart,” as folks made a point of shopping local. And she’s excited about the Waylon Holyfield Place, an outdoor, multi-use facility now in the planning stages for the downtown area. Named in honor of Holyfield, the Conway County native who’s written songs for many of Nashville’s top country music stars, the new venue will be perfect for concerts, special events and a farmers mar ket. Additionally, Morrilton is on the narrow “blue line” for the 2024 solar eclipse, and Lipsmeyer feels confident the site will be ready for the crowds expected to converge for the rare celes tial occurrence.

Another advocate for the com munity is Lisa Willenberg, chancel lor of the University of Arkansas Community College at Morrilton. Now in her 27th year with the in stitution, she and 180 of her fellow faculty/staff members offer two dozen degree programs for their 2,000 students each semester. After receiving their two-year associates degrees, those who wish to continue their education are eligible to trans fer to the University of Arkansas at the same tuition rate, giving them a major financial break. Two-year degrees in surveying, petroleum technology, cybersecurity, welding, industrial mechanics, and direction al drilling are increasingly popular, and a new RN program allowing

a seamless transition to the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences is expected to garner lots of interest as well.

Wine enthusiasts should consider a visit to Movie House Winery (99 Sandtown Road; open Thursday through Saturday from noon to 6 p.m. and Sunday from noon to 4 p.m.) Originally housed in the historic Petit Jean Theater in downtown Morrilton, owners Ken and Sherrie Sowers relocated the business to their farm on the southeastern side of town. Offering an interesting se lection of varieties, they also sell wine-themed gifts and wine-making supplies.

The Pulitzer Prize-winning historian from Morrilton was Dr. C. Vann Woodward, a distinguished professor of history at Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut. And the political dynasty that was mentioned earlier was a reference to Marlin Hawkins and his storied 38-year career in govern ment service, much of it spent as the Conway County Sheriff and Col lector. His 1991 autobiography, How I Stole Elections, is a classic work in Arkansas politics.

As for that flagship state park, it’s Petit Jean, located some 15 miles southwest of town and across the river on Arkansas Highway 154. With its historic CCC lodge and cabins, campgrounds, trails, interpretive pro grams and other features, the park is among the most popular in Arkan sas, attracting hundreds of thousands of visitors a year (free admission). In that same neighborhood is another favorite destination, the Museum of Automobiles and its collection of 50+ vehicles (to include the only known remaining Climber, an Arkansas-made car dating from 1923, and Gov. Winthrop Rockefeller’s 1951 Cadillac). Admission costs are $10 for adults; $9 for seniors; $5 for students; and children under 6 free.

Central Arkansas residents planning a visit to Morrilton might con sider going the back way, driving west on Arkansas Highway 10 and then north on Arkansas 9. It’s much less stressful than the typical route via Interstate 40, plus you’ll have the option of interesting side trips to places such as Lake Sylvia and the Flatside Wilderness in the Ouachita National Forest and Heifer Ranch near Perryville. In short, a road trip to Morrilton provides yet another chance to enjoy The Natural State!

Historic Downtown Morrilton. Photo courtesy of Joe David Rice. University of Arkansas Community College campus in Morrilton
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On Fertile

A Small Town in the Arkansas Delta Continues to be Reborn


Most of the small farming communities in the Delta of eastern Arkansas are now ghost towns – mere memories of what once was – and subjects for the despairing blues music that came from the area.

But nestled among the cotton fields in Mississippi County is Wilson, a town created in the late 1880s for the sharecrop pers and their families who toiled the land. It has seen successes over the years brought on by both farming and visionaries who believed in the town’s potential.

Wilson is now going through yet another change. This time, the 900 residents of the small town will soon see the opening of the Hotel Louis, a 16-room hotel built in the town’s square. It’ll have the amenities of a four-star hotel in nearby Memphis, with rooftop dining, suites and other luxuries not generally associated with a town built on agriculture.

When Wilson’s son, Robert E. Lee Wilson Jr., and his new bride returned to Wilson from their honeymoon in England in 1925, all buildings in the town were retrofitted with Tudor styling because of his love of English architecture.

As agricultural mechanization increased in the 1940s, fewer la borers were needed, and the town began operating at a financial loss.

Like other towns in the area, Wilson saw residents move to larger cities in the region like Blytheville and Osceola.

Finally, in 2010, the fourth generation of the Wilson fam ily sold its Lee Wilson and Company to the Lawrence Group, a Memphis firm headed by Gaylon Lawrence Jr. The property was sold for a reported $110 million.

“There have been a lot of positive changes that have been good for the town,” Detty says. “Gaylon purchased the farmland and took care of the town. He shared his vision. He definitely has an interest in building the community.”

Initially from the Missouri Bootheel, Lawrence now lives in Nashville, Tenn., and in Wilson. He shies from attention, Detty says, and won’t do interviews with the media.

Tucker, who has managed the Wilson Café and Tavern for the past two years, has lived in the area all her life and has seen the resurgence since Lawrence took over.

“Wilson tells a wonderful story,” says Cyndi Detty, marketing director for the City of Wilson. “The community is the heart of all this [resurgence]. The people are proud of who they are, and they are focused on providing the extra special services of hospitality.”

There’s also a decades-old grocery store that will move to a larg er location in town, a general store for “the modern tastemaker,” a garden center that offers wine-tasting festivals and lunch cuisines and an architectural style that seems out of place with its English Tudor features.

“We call it the ‘hidden gem of Arkansas,’” says D.J. Tucker, manager of the Wilson Café and Tavern. “I’ve been here long enough to see us go from absolutely nothing to something you’d not expect to see if you’re not from here.

“You drive along [on U.S. Hwy 61] and you come to it,” she says. “And you go, ‘Oh, wow.’”

The town with the quaint feel of Mayberry and the amenities of New York was one of the many company towns created in the Delta during the cotton boom.

Robert E. Lee Wilson established the town in 1886, providing jobs for hundreds of laborers who worked in the area farmlands and in the timber and sawmill operations. At one point, it was the largest cotton plantation in the U.S., Detty explained.

Wilson grew up in Mississippi County and, at 15, worked as a wage laborer in the nearby community of Bassett. At 18, he traded a portion of his father’s cleared land for 2,000 acres of timberland and went into the logging business.

He built a sawmill in 1886 in what is now Wilson and created a model town with a standard of living that far exceeded normal lives in the Delta. In the 1930s, all residents of Wilson paid $1.25 to cover basic medical costs. Houses were rented at low monthly rates.

“A long time ago, Wilson was a pretty good market for farm land,” she says. “It had the cotton gin. But slowly, as time went on, the town began falling.

“Mr. Lawrence saw the potential and the history of the town. “He wanted to restore it and give people something to be proud of.”

At first, she said, some residents were resistant to change and balked at Lawrence’s ideas. Wilson is a close-knit town; towns folk know each other and come together to help during sicknesses, deaths or other family maladies.

“Someone came in from out of town that no one knew and began changing stuff,” she says. “It took time to get comfortable with the changes.”

Mike Gunn, Wilson City Council member and owner of Gunn’s Grocery in Wilson, said his town could have survived with out Lawrence’s help, but it would have been a different area.

“The difference here is that our people have always had selfpride,” Gunn explains. “There were a lot of tiny towns crumbling back then, but this town kept it up.

“Gaylon saw the potential this town had and made it more,” he says. “He’s added to it and raised it to a new level that put us on the map.”

Gunn has owned his downtown grocery store for 27 years. He will move to a larger building this summer. It’s the largest project

Hotel Louis groundbreaking ceremony Wilson Cafe & Tavern

he’s ever undertaken.

“I’m 61 years old,” he says. “I’ll have the biggest debt in my life, but I’m the most confident I’ve ever been.”

Gunn said that while considered the “owner” of Wilson, Lawrence has not forced his will on aldermens’ decisions.

“He doesn’t run us,” Gunn says. “He makes it easy to say ‘yes’ to his decisions for improvements, though. I’ve disagreed with him at times, but most of what he’s done is for the improvement of our town.”

Along with the café and new hotel, Wilson also features White’s Mercantile, a general store housed in an old gas station that offers cloth ing, jewelry, household items and gifts. The store was founded by Holly Williams, the daughter of Hank Williams Jr., in Nashville. In addition to shops in Wilson and Nashville, White’s Mercantile has stores in three other towns.

Across the street from the café, the Grange at Wilson Gardens is an organic produce farm built in 2014. Fresh fruits, vegetables and herbs are grown there and lunches are served.

The Grange is comprised of multiple flower and vegetable gardens, a small orchard, three greenhouses and a chicken yard called the “Critter Corner,” says Jill Forrester, manager of The Grange.

“I consider Wilson an agritourism destination,” she says. “Between the history of the Wilson family, the charm of the town square, the in credible sunsets, the acres and acres of beautiful cotton and the ongoing reinvestments made by the Lawrence family, it’s truly a magical place to visit, work and reside.”

She says the town draws many because of its unique offerings and that its people also make Wilson a good place.

“The residents are indeed the fundamental reason we continue to thrive,” she says. “[Wilson] is one of the most hospitable and welcoming places someone could ever wish to visit, work or live.”

The small town also offers a spa, floral classes and garden club meet ings.

Food from the Wilson Gardens is also served at the Delta School – an educational institution designed to help students with tailored, progressively-tailored learning – just south of the downtown.

The town boasts the smallest state park in Arkansas at the Hampson Archeological Museum State Park that includes a nationally renowned collection of artifacts. The pieces interpret the lifestyles of the Nodena culture, a thriving civilization that farmed in the area.

Even the downtown square is reflective of Wilson’s history. In addi tion to the Tudor-style architecture, most of the buildings are painted a British green. There are the small town businesses expected in a town square – a post office, a supermarket, bank, pharmacy and a soda foun tain.

Cottonwoods surround a large grassy pavilion at the front of the square where a stone monument sits in honor of Robert E. Lee Wilson. It’s a startling discovery for travelers along U.S. 61, known as the “Blues Highway.” Motorists drive through the endless flat cotton fields of east ern Arkansas before seeing a lush green oasis on the western side of the highway that is Wilson.

The town is featured in a song by John Oates, one of the members of Hall & Oates, a popular duo from the 1970s and 1980s.

Oates was invited to play a private show in Wilson. He said later in interviews, he played at an old church in the middle of cotton fields. After the show, Oates wandered out into the cotton patch and saw the Mississippi River nearby.

“This is like a whistle stop on this great tradition of American music that came up from the Deep South through the Delta…” he said in an interview with Ultimateclassicrock.com

The video for his song “Arkansas,” the title track of his solo album by the same name released in 2018, was shot in Wilson and features several landmark locations from the town.

“When the sun starts rising, hitting 90 before the clock strikes noon, don’t you know the days’ and nights’ dreams drive slowly by,” Oates sings in “Arkansas.”

“Another Delta dawn hope worth waiting on, where that old man river flows there the snow white cotton fields of Arkansas.”

Detty says, “It’s a wonderful town,” “There’s been a lot of positive changes for the good of the town these past two years. The new hotel is interesting the people the most lately. It’s a reflection of the community and its hospitality.”

Wilson Cafe & Tavern Photo courtesy of The Grange at Wilson Gardens White's Mercantile

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innisfreehr.com Our home is conveniently located just off Walnut in Rogers close to Wal-Mart, under the medical direction of Dr. Kimberly Burner. A

CABOT HEALTH & REHAB, LLC is a skilled nursing facility offering resident-centered care in a convenient and quiet location. Cabot Health & Rehab, LLC is located in beautiful Cabot, AR near the city center, medical offices and hospitals. Our team consists of licensed nurses, physicians, therapists and other medical specialists who believe in building strong relationships with our residents and their families. We believe this is essential to the healing process.


Cabot Health & Rehab, LLC offers both semi-private and private rooms (when available). Our staff is dedicated to ensuring that our residents are provided a robust activity calendar, a superior dining experience in a warm, family-like setting. When recuperation and convalescence is needed, our staff works as a multi-disciplinary team to develop a comprehensive rehabilitation program to facilitate a return to home.


aymag.com119 CABOT HEALTH & REHAB, LLC 200 North Port Drive Cabot, AR 72023 Phone 501-843-6181 Fax 501-843-6736 c abothealth &reha bC since 1985
When indicated, our team of therapists work with residents to customize a rehabilitation program which can include physical, occupational and speech therapy with a focus on improving mobility, endurance, safety and facilitating a return to home. A tailored treatment plan will allow residents to recapture health and an independent lifestyle when possible. The enrichment of daily physical function can significantly improve a resident’s self-reliance and overall happiness. Care •
Nursing Care
Medical Staff Short-Term Rehabilitation
Respite Care
S. 24th Street
Rogers, AR 72758


Events With Purpose

September 19 & 20 | Golf Tournament

Come join us at the Chenal Country Club for one of Arkansas’s largest charity golf tournament. This two-day scramble format features a $75 golf shop gift certificate for every golfer, delicious food, ice cream on the course, prizes, and more!

To register your team visit, BoloBashGolf.org

October 11 & 12 | Reception & Luncheon

Arkansas’s premier reception and luncheon are back in person and better than ever.

October 11th join us for a reception hosted by Greg & Lee Hatcher and sponsored by Roller Funeral Home.

Enjoy a delicious lunch, a Jude Connally fashion show, and silent auction on October 12th at The Venue at Westwind. Jude Connally’s collection is nationwide in over 350 specialty stores including Dillard’s Department stores.

For ticket information visit, BoloBashLuncheon.org

For more information contact Lena Hayes at 501-202-1513 or lena.hayes@baptist-health.org


AY About You 2022 Best Health Care Professionals

The professionals of the vast landscape of health care are responsible for so much of what goes into our quality of life today. Whether it be a routine annual check-up, an appointment while we are under the weather or assistance with a chronic condition, our health care professionals are to thank for keeping us on our feet.

To provide the much-deserved recognition for a superior quality of service, AY About You is proud to present our 2022 Best Health Care Professionals, which is derived from the thousands of votes cast by you — our readers and their patients.

The categories and professionals within them are listed in alphabetical order.


KELLY BURKS, MD Arkansas Allergy & Asthma Clinic


Arkansas Otolaryngology Center


Little Rock Allergy & Asthma Clinic

CURTIS L. HEDBERG, MD, FACP Hedberg Allergy and Asthma

JIM MARK INGRAM, MD Little Rock Allergy & Asthma Clinic

BRIAN D. JACKSON, MD Jackson Allergy and Asthma Clinic


Four Seasons

Allergy and Asthma Clinic

STACIE JONES, MD Arkansas Children’s Hospital

LORI MICHELLE KAGY, MD Arkansas Allergy & Asthma Clinic


Arkansas Children’s Hospital


Allergy & Asthma Clinic of Northwest Arkansas

BLAKE G. SCHEER, MD Little Rock Allergy & Asthma Clinic

EDDIE SHIELDS, MD Arkansas Allergy & Asthma Clinic

KARL SITZ, MD, FACP, FAAAI Little Rock Allergy and Asthma Clinic

LINDSAY STILL, MD Arkansas Allergy & Asthma Clinic



Conway Anesthesiology Consultants, P.A.


Anesthesiology and Pain Management Associates



Anesthesiology and Pain Management Associates


Northwest Anesthesiology Associates, P.A.


TIMOTHY DILES, MD Arkansas Surgical Hospital

RODGER DUNIGAN, MD Northwest Medical Center

JILL FLAXMAN, MD Natural State Pain and Wellness

DENNIS N. FLOYD, MD Northwest Health- Northwest Anesthesia Associates


Advanced Spine and Pain Centers

ROBERT HUMPHREYS, MD National Park Medical Center

ANGELA ROBINETTE LOVETT, MD Anesthesia Specialists of Arkansas

MAJID SALEEM, MD Advanced Spine and Pain Centers

HEATHER WHALEY, MD Pain Treatment Centers of America


MARY CHATELAIN, AUD Pinnacle Hearing

BRADLEY DAVIS, AUD Medical Hearing Associates of Arkansas

DANIELLE HENRY, AUD Arkansas Professional Hearing Care

TRACY VAN ES, AUD Little Rock Audiology


SAMUEL BLEDSOE, MD Arkansas Heart Hospital

J.D. FULLER, MD Arkansas Heart Hospital

LEWIS PORTER, MD Saline Health System

JAMES “JJ” TUCKER, MD Arkansas Heart Hospital


DANA ABRAHAM, MD, FACS Abraham Breast Clinic

JENNIFER M. DICOCCO, MD St. Bernards Healthcare


JAMES E. HAGANS III, MD Baptist Health Surgical Clinic of Central Arkansas




THOMAS BEST, MD Arkansas Children’s Hospital

RENEE BORNEMEIER, MD Arkansas Children’s Hospital

ERIC BOWEN, MD National Park Medical Center

TIMOTHY BOWEN, MD National Park Medical Center


MICHAEL CAMP, MD Baxter Regional Medical Center, GARY J. COLLINS, MD, FACC Arkansas Cardiology


SCOTT A. DAVIS, MD, FACC Arkansas Cardiology

BRIAN EBLE, MD Arkansas Children’s Hospital

JAY GEOGHAGAN, MD, FACC Arkansas Cardiology

G. STEPHEN GREER, MD, FACC, FHRS Arkansas Cardiology


CHI St. Vincent Heart Clinic


CHI St Vincent Heart Clinic

CARL LEDING, MD Arkansas Heart Hospital

VASILI LENDEL, MD Arkansas Heart Hospital

MONICA LO, MD Arkansas Heart Hospital


St. Bernards Healthcare


CHI St. Vincent Heart Clinic


CHI St. Vincent Heart Clinic

DEVI GOPINATH NAIR, MD St. Bernards Healthcare

GARY NASH, MD Arkansas Heart Hospital

BLAKE NORRIS, MD, FACC Arkansas Cardiology

PAULO RIBEIRO, MD Arkansas Heart Hospital

ERIC ROBINSON, MD Unity Health Cardiology Clinic



Conway Regional Health System

JEFFREY STEWART, MD Central Arkansas Cardiology Associates


CHI St. Vincent Heart Clinic

WILSON WONG, MD Arkansas Heart Hospital

DENNIS WOODHALL, MD Conway Regional Health System



Arkansas Children’s Hospital

LANCE W. WEATHERS, MD Mercy Clinic Cardiology

Thank you 3737 West Walnut St. Rogers, AR 72756 25 Cunningham Corner Bella Vista, AR 72714 479.246.1700 • www.boozmanhof.com
believe your vision is one of your most important assets. It is our mission to ensure your continued ability to see life clearly.
Austin P. Bell, M.D. Mary C. Sullivan, O.D. Michael R. Waggoner, D.O. Stephanie Stanley Moss, O.D., FAAO Daniel T. Sines, M.D.
for honoring our doctors as AY’S Best Healthcare Professionals 2022! Stay proactive with your eye health and request an appointment today! SERVICES: • Oculoplastics • Medical Eye Exams • Optical & Contacts • LASIK • Cataracts • Glaucoma • Cornea • Aesthetics • Retina
C. Scott Woodward, O.D.

What is the Academies of Central Arkansas? In short, it’s about elevating all public high schools across Pulaski County to ensure scholars are COLLEGE READY, CAREER READY and prepared to be life-long learners. Students are allowed to choose a learning experience that interests them while teachers are supported and given a voice through small learning communities and business partners. Best of all, it’s for all students with no application needed and at no additional cost.

The Academies of Central Arkansas better prepares students for both post-secondary pursuits and/or entering a career immediately after high school and teaches them the skills necessary to be successful in life. Students will have the opportunity to earn dual/ concurrent credit and industry recognized certifications.

As a part of the Academies of Central Arkansas, students can expect more personalized learning with teachers who stay with them as they advance year over year. Students receive relevant learning that provides them with real-world experiences in their area of inter est, which also results in academic improvement.

The first step a student takes in the Academies of Central Arkansas is Freshman Seminar. It teaches students the life skills to be successful in both high school and life beyond, while exposing them to a multitude of careers available to them in central Arkansas. Based on that exposure, the student will select the Academy in which they will study beginning their sophomore year.

To help inform their Academy selection, freshman students will attend a Career Expo event that gives them their first opportunity to interact with businesses throughout central Arkansas and learn about possible careers. We invite local businesses to join us for this event to showcase their career opportunities and engage with the freshman students who will become our future workforce and leaders.

2, 2022 - 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Statehouse Convention Center academiesofcentralarkansas.org




Thank you for recognizing these champions for children as “Best Healthcare Professionals” in 2022.

As the only healthcare system in the state devoted solely to caring for children, Arkansas Children’s statewide network of care ensures children have access to pediatric healthcare close to home in all four corners of our state, and beyond.

Thomas Best, M.D.

Renee Bornemeier, M.D.

Cindy Carpenter, CNP

M. Sidney Dassinger, M.D.

Brian Eble, M.D.

Abby Emanuel, RN

Bethany Hutchins, CNP

McKinsey Jansen, RN

Stacie Jones, M.D.

Josh Kennedy, M.D.

Tamara T. Perry, M.D.

Holly Pettit, RN

Saritha Ranabothu, M.D.

Brian Reemtsen, M.D.

Gerald Schaefer, M.D.

John Scott, D.D.S.

Amy Scurlock, M.D.

Elizabeth Storm, M.D.

Gary Wheeler, M.D.

Scarlett Yates, RN

Heather Young, M.D.



DARREN BEAVERS, DC Dr. Darren Beavers, PA

CINDY S. BEEMER, BS Beemer Back Center

CHRIS BLACKMON, DC Blackmon Chiropractic Clinic

AMANDA BLEDSOE, DC Bledsoe Chiropractic

JASON M. COLLINS, DC Collins Chiropractic and Diagnostics

CHRIS CURTIS, DC Curtis Chiropractic & Wellness

BEVERLY FOSTER, DC Chiropractic Health & Rehabilitation

CAROL REYNOLDS, DC Bella Vista Back Center, P.A.

RICHARD L. RILEY, DC Little Rock Chiropractic Clinic

JEFFREY SMITH, DC Smith Family Clinic

DWIGHT STEWART, DC Pain Care Associates

DAVID VANG, DC Pain Care Associates

JOHN VINCENT, CCEP, CCWP Wellness Revolution

ERIC W. WALKER, DC Millennium Chiropractic and Rehab


DANNA F. GREAR, MD The Breast Center, A MANA Clinic


BRITTON B. LOTT, MD The Breast Center, A MANA Clinic

SHARP MALAK, MD Associated Radiologists, Ltd.

KELLY A. PIERCE, MD The Breast Center, A MANA Clinic


Associated Radiologists, Ltd.



AUBREY HARTON, PHARMD Cornerstone Pharmacy at Chenal

CHRISTY SKINNER, RN Cabot Emergency Hospital



CHI St. Vincent Colorectal Surgery Clinic

ANGELO G. COPPOLA, MD Premier Gastroenterology


CHI St. Vincent Gastroenterology Clinic

KEVIN HEATH, MD GastroArkansas

DAVID K. MAGEE, MD Northwest Medical CenterSpringdale

ANGELA K. NUTT, MD GastroArkansas


CHI St. Vincent Colorectal Surgery Clinic

HOLLIS ROGERS, III, MD Highlands Oncology Group

PATRICK SZETO, MD, FACS, FASCRS CHI St. Vincent Colorectal Surgery Clinic



MARCUS BLACK, DDS Marcus Black Dentistry

JORDAN COOPER, DDS Cooper Family Dentistry

DJ DAILEY, III, DDS Smile Dailey

JEFF GARNER, DDS The Smile Doctor

JENNIFER HALL HILL, DDS Austin Family Dentistry

DAVID HILL, DDS Hill Family Dental

TINA NICHOLS, DDS Arkansas Family Dental

DAVID M. RAINWATER, DDS Hawkins Rainwater Dental Group

JEFF WISENER, DDS Wisener, Cooper & Fergus, D.D.S.

LEE WYANT, DDS Smile Arkansas


MICHAEL A. DEVLIN, MD Devlin Cosmetic Surgery

W. TOMASZ MAJEWSKI, MD, FACS Majewski Plastic Surgery

DARON C. PRAETZEL, DMD Arkansas Oral & Maxillofacial

JEFFREY SWETNAM, MD Swetnam Cosmetic Surgery

BYRON WILKES, MD McFarland Eye Center

SUZANNE YEE, MD Cosmetic & Laser Surgery Center



SARAH ATKINS, DDS Arkansas Family Dental

BRYAN AUSTIN, DDS Austin Family Dentistry


WES BUCHMAN, DDS, FICOI Buchman Dental on Markham St

BRETT BURRIS, DDS Dental Solutions

RICHARD “NO PAIN” CAIN, DDS Saline Dental Group

MICHAEL CARTER, DDS Carter Family Dentistry

CHRISTOPHER CHANDLER, DDS Chandler Family Dentistry

JOHN CLOUD, DDS Cloud & Hill Dental Care

DALE COLCLASURE, DDS Crestwood Dental Care


JOHN DEAN, DDS Dean Dental Solutions

DRAKE HAWKINS, DDS Hawkins Rainwater Dental Group



ROBERT KALOGHIROU, DDS Woodruff Family Dental

CHAD MATONE, DDS Arkansas Dental Centers


TARA SCALLION, DDS Austin Family Dental


LANE SMITH, DDS Saline Dental Group

SARAH YARNELL, DDS Woodsprings Family Dentistry


KATTIE ALLEN, MD Premier Dermatology

REBEKAH BALTZ, MD Premier Dermatology

RENÉ BRESSINCK, MD Dermatology Group of Arkansas

ROBERT BROWN, MD Ozark Dermatology

MISSY CLIFTON, MD Premier Dermatology


SCOTT M. DINEHART, MD Arkansas Dermatology

128 Dr. Sara BlairDr. Erin HekmatpourDr. Philip Pounders Thank you, Arkansas, for recognizing our Family Medicine Physicians as some of AY Magazine’s Best Healthcare Professionals! Autumn Road Family
– with
than 130 years of combined physician expertise. 904 Autumn Road Ste. 200 • Little Rock 501-227-6363 • autumnroadfamilypractice.com Congratulations! Dr Christina Green Dr Laura Hardin Dr Tyler Nelson on being voted as some of AY Magazine's Best Healthcare Professionals! Dr Lewis Porter Dr James Robb Dr Jeffrey Stewart Stephanie Farmer, APRN S A L I N E C L I N I C S . O R G | 5 0 1 . 3 8 7 . 0 1 6 3 501-791-7546 // arkansasdermatology.com Committed to providing the highest level of expertise in both general dermatology and the treatment of skin cancer. Michael F. Osleber, M.D.
been in
for over
aymag.com129 5 therapy locations to serve you: Little Rock- West, Little Rock- Heights, Maumelle, Sherwood, Benton 501-301-4530 THANK YOU , Arkansas, for recognizing Dr. Lagemann and Dr. Sanders among the top Physical Therapists in the state! All Your Rehab Needs Dr. Derek Lagemann DPTDr. Brad Sanders DPT physical therapy • occupational therapy • speech therapy 501-575-0088 1701 Centerview Dr, Ste 201, Little Rock, AR 72211 drwrightplasticsurgery.com r Beauty, Expertise Thank you for voting us among AY's Best Healthca


Little Rock Dermatology Clinic

WILLIAM HELMS, MD Helms Dermatology

LANCE HENRY, MD Advanced Dermatology & Skin Cancer Center

CHERYL HULL, MD, FAAD Hull Dermatology & Aesthetics

MALLORY HURST, MD St. Bernards Healthcare

JENNIFER JACKS, MD, FADD Jack’s Dermatology

MATTHEW KAGY, MD Little Rock Dermatology Clinic

ANDREA MABRY, MD Pinnacle Dermatology

KAYLA MOHR, MD Pinnacle Dermatology

MICHAEL F. OSLEBER, MD Arkansas Dermatology

RAY K. PARKER, MD Dermatology Group of Arkansas

MATT REYNOLDS, PA-C Arkansas Dermatology

CHRIS SCHACH, MD Ozark Dermatology


ADAM SILLS, MD Sills Dermatology

DOWLING STOUGH, MD Dermatology Clinic of Arkansas


Little Rock Dermatology Clinic


Premier Dermatology

MARLA WIRGES, MD Pinnacle Dermatology



Conway Regional Health System


SCOTT ARCHER, MD Cabot Emergency Hospital

BRIAN BAIRD, MD Cabot Emergency Hospital

JAMES (JIM) BOX, MD Cabot Emergency Hospital

DUSTY BOYD, MD St. Bernards Healthcare

SCOTT DARNELL, MD Cabot Emergency Hospital


Conway Regional Health System


Conway Regional Health System

CHARLES MASON, MD Cabot Emergency Hospital


NPMC Emergency Medicine Services

JUSTIN PHILLIPS, MD CHI St. Vincent Infirmary


Conway Regional Health System

ELIZABETH STORM RULE, MD Arkansas Children’s Hospital



JUSTIN WHITE, MD Cabot Emergency Hospital



Alex Endocrine Associates


Arkansas Heart Hospital

LYNDELL C. HORINE, MD Mercy Clinic Endocrinology


CHI St. Vincent Diabetes and Endocrinology Clinic


CHI St. Vincent Diabetes and Endocrinology Clinic

MARIA JAVAID, MD Conway Regional Health System

PRAJESH M. JOSHI, MD Mercy Clinic Endocrinology

ALLEN REDDING, MD CHI St. Vincent Little Rock Diagnostic Clinic


JAMAL ABDIN, MD Washington Regional Family Clinic

CRYSTAL ADAMS, APRN Family Medicine NEA Baptist


SARA BLAIR, MD Autumn Road Family Practice

KRISTIE BRANSCUM, APRN BRHS Hometown Clinic at Calico Rock

CAMILLE BRASWELL, MD St. Vincent Family Clinic Chenal

JULIAN CALHOON, MD Jacksonville Medical Care

CHARLES CLIFTON, MD Greenbrier Family Clinic

STEPHANIE CODY, MD Baptist Health Family Medicine Hillcrest

WILLIAM COLE, MD Family Medicine and Wellness

KENT COVERT, MD Little Rock Family Practice Clinic



Little Rock Family Practice Clinic

DERRICK GRAY, MD Northwest Health

NICHOLAS GUINN, MD St. Bernards Healthcare

LAURA HARDIN, MD Central Arkansas Family Practice

ERIN HEKMATPOUR, MD Autumn Road Family Practice Clinic

KEVIN HIEGEL, MD Little Rock Family Practice


Little Rock Family Practice Clinic




FirstCare Family Doctors, A MANA Clinic


FirstCare Family Doctors, A MANA Clinic


Little Rock Family Practice Clinic


Mercy Clinic Family Medicine

PHILIP POUNDERS, MD Autumn Road Family Practice

TIMMOTHY REECE, MD Family Medicine of White Hall

ABBY RICE, PA-C Unity Health

KEVIN ROBERTS, MD Little Rock Family Practice Clinic


Mercy Clinic Family Medicine and Obstetrics

TAMMIE STALLINGS, MD Mercy Clinic Moberly

JEFFREY STAMP, MD Cabot Medical Clinic

ERICA STOKES, MD Baptist Health



Tilley Family Medicine

MARK WATSON LEFLER, MD Family Medicine and Wellness Clinic




Conway Orthopedic & Sports Medicine Clinic COSMC


DDS Dentures + Implant Solutions of Conway offers a wide variety of dental services, including dentures, dental implants, implant supported dentures (fixed and snap-in dentures), extractions, and other general dentistry services such as partials, crowns, bridges, root canals and hygiene services. DDS Dentures + Implant Solutions is able to provide same-day service on dentures in most cases through its on-site lab.

At DDS Dentures + Implant Solutions, you’ll receive excellent care from compassionate, experienced professionals. The clinic offers several financing options (with one very unique and exclusive financing option coming to the clinic very soon) and can work with any budget to provide exceptional dental care at affordable prices. The staff of DDS Dentures + Implant Solutions believes that dental care should not just be for the privileged, and they will work with you to ensure that you get the treatment and care you deserve.

“I am so incredibly grateful for being able to come into my clinic each day and work with the most phenomenal staff as we provide dental care to the most amazing patients,” says Clinic Manager Laura Brunson. “To see our patients go through such transformations — to see it impact their confidence and self-esteem, to be able to touch people’s lives and see them smile again — is more rewarding than I could ever put into words.”

635 Dave Ward Drive, Suite 101 • Conway, AR • 501.229.5993 •

Thomas Kennedy, DDS of Arkansas II, PLLC - General Dentistry ConwayDentures.com • /ConwayDentures
Congratulations Dr. Jeffrey Smith Voted one of the top healthcare professionals in chiropractic medicine by the readers of AY Magazine for 2022. 479-271-6992 1300 S.E. 14th Street, Suite 2 Bentonville, AR 72712 smithfamilyclinicnwa.com Smith Family Clinic



Premier Gastroenterology Associates


CHI St. Vincent Gastroenterology Clinic

BRIAN T. HUGHES, MD Premier Gastroenterology Associates

BRUCE JOHNSON, MD GastroArkansas

JOHNNY JONES, MD Premier Gastroenterology Associates

STEVEN JONES, MD, FAARM Premier Gastroenterology Associates


CHI St. Vincent Gastroenterology Clinic


Premier Gastroenterology Associates

BRIAN L. MCGEE, MD Arkansas Diagnostic Center

MARTIN MOIX, MD Conway Regional Health System

DEBRA F. MORRISON, MD GastroArkansas

CHAD E. PASCHALL, MD North Hills Gastroenterology Endoscopy Center

DHAVAL A. PATEL, MD Premier Gastroenterology Associates

STEPHEN STAGG, MD Northwest Arkansas Gastroenterology Clinic

DOUG STOKES, MD GastroArkansas


Premier Gastroenterology Associates


Mercy Clinic Gastroenterology

ALONZO D. WILLIAMS, MD Arkansas Diagnostic Center

STEPHEN ZILLER, MD Arkansas Diagnostics Center



Conway Regional Health System

LEWIS PORTER, MD Saline Surgical Associates


ROBERT BREVING, MD, FACS National Park Medical Center


The Surgical Clinic of Central Arkansas



The Surgical Clinic of Central Arkansas


CHRISTIAN LATHAM, MD National Park Medical Center

LOGAN LYNCH, MD St. Bernards Healthcare

GUY PEEPLES, MD Baptist Health Conway


Conway Regional Health System


The Surgical Clinic of Central Arkansas

STEPHEN T. WOOD, MD Encompass Health Rehabilitation Hospital


ANNETTE ANDERSON, MD Conway Regional Health System

BRADLEY BIBB, MD Access Medical Clinic


CHI St. Vincent Primary and Convenient Care

JOSE FONTANILLA, MD Northwest Medical Center


CHI St. Vincent Little Rock Diagnostic Clinic


South Arkansas Nephrology Associates

MARGARET H. TAYLOR, MD Taylor Integrative Medicine



J. KIRK GRYNWALD, MD OrthoArkansas

JAMES T. HOWELL, MD Conway Orthopedic & Sports Medicine Clinic COSMC

BRIAN NORTON, MD OrthoArkansas

DAVID M. RHODES, MD Bowen Hefley Orthopedics, Arkansas Surgical Hospital

CLAYTON RILEY, MD Martin Orthopaedic



JOSEPH BECK II, MD CHI St. Vincent Oncology Clinic



MONICA HALL, MD Little Rock Eye Clinic



SUE TSUDA, MD Conway Hematology Oncology


RACHANA YENDALA, MD Conway Regional Health System


TONDA GRESHAM, RN Elder Independence



Conway Regional Health System



Infectious Diseases Specialist of Northwest Arkansas



Baptist Health Infectious DiseasesArkansas


MALLORY SMITH, MD Conway Regional Health System

MARK L. STILLWELL, MD, FACS Arkansas College of Osteopathic Medicine

GARY WHEELER, MD Arkansas Children’s Hospital


CHI St. Vincent Little Rock Diagnostic Clinic

HEATHER YOUNG, MD Arkansas Children’s Hospital



Autumn Road Family Practice

CLAY BRASHEARS, MD Main Street Medical Clinic


CHI St. Vincent Little Rock Diagnostic Clinic


CHI St. Vincent Little Rock Diagnostic Clinic

STEVEN A. EDMONDSON, MD Washington Regional Medical Center

GERRY EZELL, MD Baptist Health Internal Medicine Clinic


Conway RegionalMayflower Medical Clinic

Your care is our calling At OrthoArkansas, we believe every Arkansan deserves to live an active, pain-free life through patient-focused comprehensive specialized orthopedic care. Our fellowship-trained physicians lead the state and region through innovations in technology, medicine, teamwork, practice and performance. We have 9 locations statewide, 3 ambulatory surgery centers, and 2 Urgent Care Clinics to serve you. O r t h o A r k a n s a s .co m 501-350-3500 Schedule an appointment online or by phone. ORTHOPEDIC Urgent Care Little Rock - Midtown North Little Rock HOURS 8 AM — 8 PM Monday — Friday 8 AM — Noon Saturday
136 All for Kids Pediatric Clinic wants to thank our patients for nominating us for AY ’s 2022 Best Healthcare Professionals. 904 Autumn Rd., Ste. 100 | Little Rock, AR | afkpeds.org501.224.KIDS (5437) Our physicians, back row: Dr. Tony Elias, Dr. Jerry Byrum, Dr. Kim Skelley and Dr. Joshua Lyon Front row: Dr. Ashley Halpain, Dr. Dawn Martin and Dr. September Westbrook WE WOULD LIKE TO CONGRATULATE DR. JERRY LORIO FOR BEING VOTED ONE OF AY’S TOP HEALTHCARE PROFESSIONALS IN ORTHOPEDICS. 2010 Active Way • Benton, Arkansas 72019 501-315-0984 • www.arboneandjoint.com ASI Hip Replacement Shoulder Surgery Patient Specific Knee Replacement
aymag.com137 World Class Care Locally Felicia Johnson, MD Lance A. Manning, MD, FACS Kevin Lollar, MD, FACS, FAAOA Cory Vaughn, MD • Comprehensive Ear, Nose and Throat Care • Integrated, Multi-Disciplinary Team • Pediatric and Adult Ear, Nose and Throat Care • Four Convenient Locations in NWA 479-750-2080 entozarks.com For voting us one of AY’s Best Healthcare Professionals. Tank You! A Team You Can TRUST Arkansas Diagnostic Center // 8908 Kanis Rd. Little Rock, AR 72205 501.227.7688 // www.adcgca.com Brian L. McGee, MD Stephen A. Ziller, MD Alonzo Williams, SR, MD Medical Director OVER 30 YEARS OF EXCELLENCE IN GASTROENTEROLOGY


Conway Regional Health System

JASON M. MCKINNEY, MD Mercy Clinic Pulmonology and Critical Care Medicine

TYLER NELSON, MD Bryant Medical Clinic

JOHN PRICE, MD Northwest Medical Plaza

DAVID PYLE, MD St. Bernards Healthcare

JAMES SALMON, MD Fayetteville Diagnostic Clinic, A MANA Clinic


WILLIAM WESLEY THORPE, DO Baptist Health Medical Center NLR


MARINA IVANOVSKY, APN Marina Lifestyle Medicine


GERALD SCHAEFER, MD Arkansas Children’s Hospital




JACOB BOYDSTUN, DO Springwoods Behavioral Hospital

JIM HARPER, LCSW, LMFT-S, EMDR Riverstone Wellness Center

NINA HARRISON, LCSW Indigo Counseling



Counseling Services of Jacksonville

SHIRLEY MCMURRY, LCSW Counseling Clinic, Inc.

SHEFA RAHMAN, MD Springwoods Behavioral Hospital


SUSAN L. SHACKELFORD, PHD Psychology & Counseling Associates



KATIE WALKER, LCSW, RPT Indigo Counseling


MICHAEL S. GERSCH, MD Arkansas Renal Group, P.A.

JAMES T. HENRY, MD Renal Care Associates

MICHAEL MOULTON, MD Renal Specialists of Northwest Arkansas

SARITHA RANABOTHU, MD Arkansas Children’s Hospital

MARY JO SHAVER, MD Nephrology Associates, PA

JOHN H. WU, MD Renal Specialists of Northwest Arkansas


ROBERT ABRAHAM, MD Neurosurgery NEA Baptist


REGAN GALLAHER, MD Conway Regional Health System

LUKE KNOX, MD, FACS Northwest Arkansas Neurosurgery Clinic, P.A.

ALI KRISHT, MD, FACS CHI St. Vincent Arkansas Neuroscience Institute

DOMINIC MAGGIO, MD Legacy Spine & Neurologist Specialist

ZACH MASON, MD Arkansas Surgical Hospital

STYLIANOS RAMMOS, MD Arkansas Neuroscience Institute

SCOTT SCHLESINGER, MD Legacy Spine and Neurology

BRAD THOMAS, MD Arkansas Surgical Hospital, Little Rock Neurosurgery Clinic



LARRY ARMSTRONG, DO Washington Regional Brain and Spine Surgery Clinic

BEVERLY BEADLE, MD CHI St. Vincent Little Rock Diagnostic Clinic

VICTOR BITON, MD Arkansas Epilepsy


KATHRYN CHENAULT, MD CHI St. Vincent North Neurology Clinic

ALAN DIAMOND, DO Washington Regional Senior Health Clinic

DIMITRY A. FOMIN, MD Mercy Clinic Neurology

TIM FREYALDENHOVEN, MD, PHD Conway Regional Health System

JACQUELYN SUE FRIGON, MD Jefferson Regional Medical Center


STYLIANOS RAMMOS, MD CHI St. Vincent Neuroscience Institute

KELLI SCHLESINGER, MD Legacy Spine and Neurology

KEITH SCHLUTERMAN, MD Conway Regional Health System

ELAINE WILSON, MD CHI St. Vincent Neuroscience Institute


ANGELA CASE, RN Melanie Prince Plastic Surgery

MISSY CLIFTON, MD Premier Dermatology

J. MARCUS HEIM, DO LaVida Massage Fayetteville

MIMI LEE, MD, PA Vein & Aesthetic Care

ALEXA MEDLOCK, RN Arkansas Aesthetics in Conway

THERESA J. MOIX, APRN Conway Women’s Med Spa

STACY PETTY, CNP Revive Lifestyle Medicine

KATHERINE THOMAS, RN Arkansas Aesthetics




RACHEL ASHCRAFT, APRN Cornerstone Clinic for Women


Conway Regional Greenbrier Family Medicine

SAVANNAH BRADBURY, PA Conway Regional Neuroscience Center

KAREN BRANCH, NP Helms Dermatology

REBECCA BURKE, APRN Psychiatric Association of Arkansas

JENNIFER BURKE, APRN Saline Surgical Associates

SCOTT CAMPBELL, PA National Park Medical Center



CINDY CARPENTER, CNP Arkansas Children’s Hospital

BOBBETTE CARTER, PA Family Medicine of White Hall

NICHOLE CLARK, NP Hope Medical Clinic


Arkansas Urology is one of the most experienced and respected urological practices in the region thanks to the dedication and expertise of our physicians and professional staff. This experience, combined with the latest innovations in medical technology and surgical techniques, makes Arkansas Urology a leader in comprehensive urological care for men and women of all ages across Arkansas.



Saline Memorial Hospital

JULIE DAVENPORT, RN, CANS Premier Dermatology


Conway Regional Medical Clinic –Prince St.

ABBY EMANUEL, RN Travel Nurse Medical Solutions




STEPHANIE FARMER, APRN Bryant Medical Clinic


Conway Regional Mayflower Medical Clinic

LINDSEY GILLUM, MSN, APRN, FNP-C Revive Lifestyle Medicine

KEVIN GIRTMAN, PA Baptist Family Clinic, Beebe




LISA GRUMMER, APRN Cornerstone Clinic for Women


Cypert Ridge Family Practice Clinic




Pain Treatment Centers of America

ROXANN HUGHES, APRN CNS Little Rock Pulmonary Clinic

BETHANY HUTCHINS, BSN, RN Arkansas Children’s Hospital

KAYLA INGRAM-SMITH, APRN Pain Treatment Centers of America

MCKINSEY JANSEN, RN, CCRN Arkansas Children’s Hospital



Conway Regional Greenbrier Family Medicine

STACEY JOHNSON, APRN Conway Regional Health System

TAYLOR KELAMIS, APRN Kelamis Plastic Surgery

PAIGE KELLY, BSN, RN Wright Plastic Surgery


DANIELLE LYNCH, APN Renew Mental Health and Wellness

MEGHAN MALLETT, APRN Conway Regional Medical Clinic - Prince Street

KAREN MARTIN, APRN Arkansas Pediatrics of Conway

RACHEL MCCRARY, APRN Pain Treatment Centers of America

DONNA MCGHEE, APRN Arkansas Renal Group, P.A.

NICOLE MCMINN, CNO Cabot Emergency Hospital


SHELLEY PAYNE, APRN Baptist Health Family Clinic-Bryant

HOLLY PETTIT, RN Arkansas Children’s Hospital

JACLYN PIASTA, APRN Cornerstone Clinic for Women

SHANNON POGUE, APRN Access Medical Clinic

JULIA PONDER, APRN Arkansas Heart Hospital

KAREN REYNOLDS, MSN, APRN, FNP-BC North Arkansas Hospice

KARA RICHARDSON, PA Premier Dermatology


ESTEE SNEED, APRN Family Medicine of White Hall

KRISTY THOMPSON, APRN Pain Treatment Centers of America

DANA TREAT, APRN Hope Medical Clinic

MEGAN TUCKER, APRN Cornerstone Clinic for Women

LOREN UTLEY, RN Arkansas Children’s Hospital

DIA WATSON, PA-C Arkansas Bone & Joint

AUDREY WEATHERRED, RN Saline Memorial Hospital

VICTORIA WHEELER, RN Arkansas Heart Hospital

JENNIFER WILSON, APRN Cornerstone Clinic for Women

SCARLETT YATES, RN Arkansas Children’s Hospital

TAYLOR YOUNGBLOOD, APRN Arkansas Neuroscience Institute



Lifespring Women’s Healthcare

SCOTT BAILEY, MD Parkhill The Clinic for Women

KEVIN BRENIMAN, MD Cornerstone Clinic for Women

BRIAN M. BURTON, MD The Women’s Clinic

KAY CHANDLER, MD Cornerstone Clinic for Women

MICHAEL CLOUATRE, MD Creekside Center for Women



Lifespring Women’s Healthcare

ASHLEY DEED, MD Central Clinic for Women

DREW DUNHAM, MD St. Bernards Healthcare


Northwest Women’s Specialty Group


The Women’s Clinic


West Little Rock Women's Center


CHI St. Vincent Women’s Clinic


Parkhill The Clinic for Women

CHRISTINA GREEN, MD Saline Women’s Clinic


Lifespring Women’s Healthcare


Central Clinic for Women


Washington Regional Medical Center Gynecologic Oncology


Parkhill The Clinic for Women

ROBERT HIX, MD Parkhill The Clinic for Women


Central Clinic for Women


The Woman’s Clinic


Conway Women’s Health Center


Washington Regional Medical Center Integrative Gynecology

STEPHEN MARKS, MD Marks, Alston & Chang


Conway Women’s Health Center



program treats patients in an intensive therapeutic structure, providing medical and psychiatric hour nursing care for patients experiencing critical symptoms. It offers a comprehensive treatm stabilizing acute psychiatric and any additive disease problems in patients of all ages.

find a safe and structured environment that offers compassion and hope. A multi including physicians, nurses, therapists and others work together to develop an individualized treatment emphasis placed on medication management, as well as individual, group and family therapy.

Adolescent Program serves ages 12 17

Adolescent Program serves ages 12 17 Program serves ages 18+ Women ages 18+

Evening Treatment Programs:

Thank Youfor honoring Dr Rahman and Dr Boydstun

as AY ’s Best Healthcare Professionals!

Hospitalization (PHP) This program is appropriate for patients who have mild to moderate mental or who require coordinated, intensive, comprehensive, and multi disciplinary treatment. PHP is patients who are able to maintain themselves in the community and those who present no immediate themselves or others.

Outpatient Program (IOP) This program is frequently (but not always) a step down level of care for been in the Partial Hospitalization Program (PHP). IOP is appropriate for patients who are at a lower require more intensi

Springwoods Behavioral Health offers a number of specialized behavioral health treatment programs for all patient types. Among these are programs for adolescents, adults and women. In each treatment program, a multidisciplinary team of professionals—in cluding psychiatrists, nurses, social workers and therapists—develop an individualized treatment plan for each patient based on their particular needs and strengths.

Hospitalization (PHP) This evening program, adolescent patients will work through issues in group facing similar issues. Patients work in depth with the treatment team, including a psychiatrist and negative behaviors into positive ones. Hours are 4:00 pm to 8:30 pm with dinner included and offered five days a week for adolescent’s group therapy.


rogram for opiate dependence and Medication Management and Amenities

confidential 24 by licensed or masters level clinicians assessments for all patients within the first 24 hours of admission pharmacy with access to pharmacist 24 hours a day

Recreational therapy assessment for every patient, with treatment plan developed to promote physical activity Nourishment area available to patients 24 hours a day specialists assess each patient’s nutritional needs style dining room to promote social interaction in a comfortable environment the art gymnasium with shock absorbent flooring and sound reduction panels group services for the community

Educational seminars and mental health screenings

• Telehealth • Inpatient
• Adult
• Addiction
Outpatient Programs
Evening Adolescent Partial Hospitalization Program (PHP)
Truckers Drive Fayetteville
72704 479-973-6000 • springwoodsbehavioral.com
Dr Rahman
Dr Boydstun

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Arkansas Fertility and Gynecology


LINDSEY OSLEBER, MD Arkansas Women’s Center

LORIE OSWALT, APN Lifespring Women’s Healthcare

PAIGE PARTRIDGE, MD Parkhill The Clinic for Women

ANANTH RANGANATHAN, MD Arkansas Women’s Center

GREG REITER, DO, FACOOG Creekside Center for Women

JAMES ROBB, MD Saline Women’s Clinic

JOSEPH O. SAMS IV, MD St. Bernards Healthcare

NICOLE SCALLY, MD Northwest Arkansas Family Medicine & Obstetrics

LAWRENCE SCHMITZ, MD Lifespring Women’s Healthcare

LINDSEY SEALE, MD, FACOG Parkhill The Clinic for Women

AMBER SILLS, MD Women’s Health Associates

KENNETH SINGLETON, MD Cornerstone Clinic for Women

KALA SLATON, MD Conway Regional Health System



JULIAN TERRY, MD Parkhill The Clinic for Women


JULIA WATKINS, MD West Little Rock Women’s Center

TIFFANY N. WEATHERS, MD Mercy Clinic Obstetrics and Gynecology


AMY WIEDOWER EBLE, MD Central Clinic for Women


MICHAEL KACZKOWSKI, BCO The Center for Alloplastic Facial Reconstruction



J. THADDEUS BECK, MD, FACS Highlands Oncology Group

DANIEL S. BRADFORD, MD Highlands Oncology Group

BROOKE E. BRANDER, DO Highlands Oncology

LYNSAY BRAUTNICK, MD Highlands Oncology Clinic

FRED DIVERS, MD Genesis Cancer Center





STEPHAN B. ROSENFELD, MD Highlands Oncology Group


PATRICK M. TRAVIS, MD Highlands Oncology Group



TRACY BALTZ, MD Little Rock Eye Clinic

LAURIE BARBER, MD Little Rock Eye Clinic

AUSTIN BELL, MD BoozmanHof Eye Care Center


CHAD BETTS, MD, RPH McDonald Eye Associates

SUSAN BLAIR, MD Little Rock Eye Clinic



JENNIFER DOYLE, MD Little Rock Eye Clinic

TONY FLIPPIN, MD Mercy Clinic Oncology

CHRISTIAN HESTER, MD Little Rock Eye Clinic

STEPHEN MAGIE, MD Magie Mabrey Eye Clinic P.A.

MATTHEW MARGOLIS, DO St. Bernards Healthcare

MIKE MCFARLAND, MD McFarland Eye Center


EVAN NEWBOLT, MD McFarland Eye Center


EDWARD PENICK III, MD Central Arkansas Ophthalmology


DANIEL T. SINES, MD BoozmanHof Eye Care Center

THOMAS STANK, MD Southern Eye Associates

MICHAEL WAGGONER, DO BoozmanHof Eye Care Center

BYRON WILKES, MD McFarland Eye Center


PERRY AMERINE, OD Amerine Eye Care

PHILIP F. BRANDON, OD Brandon Eye Clinic

SHELBY BROGDON, OD McFarland Eye Center

ENNAN DOAN, OD Eye Care Arkansas

PENNY FRESHOUR, OD Dr. Penny Freshour

DANIEL HENNESSEY, OD Little Rock Eye Clinic

ALLYSON MERTINS, OD Mertins Eye & Optical


BILL PATTERSON, OD Patterson Eye Care

GREG PHILPOTT, OD Roberts Philpott Eye Associates


R. HUNTER SCAIFE, OD Arkansas Eye Care Group

RUSSELL T. SIMMONS, OD Simmons Eye Care Clinic

MARY C. SULLIVAN, OD BoozmanHof Eye Care Center

JAMI VEAL, OD Southern Eye Associates

VANESSA WALL, OD Vision Care Center

C. SCOTT WOODWARD, OD BoozmanHof Eye Care Center


JOHN A. DANIEL, MSD, DDS Daniel Orthodontics

CARMELLA KNOERNSCHILD, DDS, PA Carmella M. Knoernschild Orthodontic Clinic

CLAYTON OWEN, DDS Owen Orthodontics


Minutes Away. Hours Faster.

Cabot Emergency Hospital is Arkansas’s first emergency-focused specialty hospital. Our state-of-the-art facility features no wait times, board-certified emergency physicians, and a dedicated clinical team who is always ready to provide expert care when it’s needed most. We would like to congratulate each of our physicians for being named to AY’s 2022 Best Healthcare Professionals list. Their continual commitment to our patients is what makes Cabot Emergency Hospital the superior choice for emergency care in Central Arkansas – 24/7, 365 days a year.

501.333.9110 212 WILLIE RAY DR. caboter.com
Dr. Scott Archer Dr. Brian Baird Dr. Jim Box Dr. Scott Darnell Dr. Charles Mason Dr. Justin White
medical care
opened our doors in 1938,
continue to focus on the ultimate patient experience.
now have four clinic locations to bring the best pediatric care closer to you. We have a dedicated staff with over 200 years of combined experience to provide the highest quality
child. We invite you to come see for yourself why parents have trusted us as their child’s healthcare team.
WEST LR 16115 St. Vincent Way Ste. 320 Little Rock MIDTOWNE 500 S. University Ste. 317 Little Rock
extraordinary CARE Dr. Sarah BoneDr. Lori Montgomery Dr. Anthony Johnson Dr. Stacy Sax 501-664-7444 Tina Nichols, DDS years in business! Voted one of the top Optometrists the readers of Magazine for 2022. CongratulationsDr. Russell T. Simmons, OD 4328 Central Ave., Ste 6 Hot Springs, AR 71913
MAUMELLE 11749 Maumelle Blvd. North Little Rock BRYANT 1412 Woodland Drive Bryant (501) 664-4117 www.arped.com

9601 Baptist Health Drive Suite 1200 Little Rock, AR 72205

Phone: (501) 664-4131 Fax: (501) 664-9470

Brian M. Burton, M.D.
Congratulations! Since the 1930s, our patients have counted on us to provide expert care, often across multiple generations of families from grandmothers to mothers and daughters.
Jill K. Jennings, M.D. Shelly Gibbs, M.D. The Woman’s Clinic is honored to have Jill K. Jennings, M.D.; Brian M. Burton, M.D. and Shelly Gibbs, M.D. named to AY’s 2022 Best Healthcare Professionals!


Phelan Orthodontics

DAVID WARDLAW, DDS Wardlaw Orthodontics


TROY ARDOIN, MD OrthoArkansas

MARK S. “BJ” BAILEY, MD Arkansas Bone & Joint, Saline Memorial Hospital

GRANT BENNETT, MD Conway Regional Health System



CHI St. Vincent Orthopedic Clinic

CHRIS O. DOUGHERTY, DO, FAOAO Agility Center Orthopedics

THOMAS DAY, MD Unity Health


Bowen Hefley Orthopedics, Arkansas Surgical Hospital

C. KRIS HANBY, MD Ozark Orthopaedics


Bowen Hefley Orthopedics, Arkansas Surgical Hospital

MICHAEL HUBBARD, MD National Park Medical Center

JACOB KALER, MD Mercy Clinic Orthopedics

KENNETH MARTIN, MD Martin Orthopedics


MARK POWELL, MD Powell Orthopaedics


Conway Regional Health System


CHI St. Vincent Hot Springs


TROY ARDOIN, MD OrthoArkansas

CHRIS ARNOLD, MD Advanced Ortho Specialists



Bowen Hefley Orthopedics, Arkansas Surgical Hospital

GEORGE “BJ” W. DEIMEL, MD Ozark Orthopaedics

BRIAN DICKSON, MD St. Bernards Healthcare

SPENCER GUINN, MD St. Bernards Healthcare


Bowen Hefley Orthopedics, Arkansas Surgical Hospital

JERRY LORIO, MD Arkansas Bone & Joint


Bowen Hefley Orthopedics, Arkansas Surgical Hospital

LARRY L. NGUYEN, MD Bowen Hefley Orthopedics, Arkansas Surgical Hospital

JASON G. STEWART, MD Bowen Hefley Orthopedics, Arkansas Surgical Hospital

SCOTT WALSH, MD Arkansas Bone & Joint


STEVE CASHMAN, MD ENT and Allergy Center

FELICIA JOHNSON, MD ENT Center of the Ozarks

KEVIN LOLLER, MD ENT Center of the Ozarks

LANCE A. MANNING, MD, FACS ENT Center of the Ozarks


Arkansas Center for Ear, Nose, Throat and Allergy


JARED R. SPENCER, MD ENT Center of the Ozarks


UAMS Health

SAMUEL VALLERY, MD ENT Associates of South Arkansas

CORY VAUGHN, MD ENT Center of the Ozarks


ROBERT C. BAKER, MD Pain Treatment Centers of America


TERRY FLETCHER, MD Pain Treatment Centers of America


JASON A. HUNT, MD Encompass Health Rehabilitation Hospital

STEPHEN IRWIN, MD NWA Interventional Pain

MIKHAIL IVANOVSKY, MD Pain Treatment Centers of America

SAMEER JAIN, MD Pain Treatment Centers of America

CHRIS MARANTO, MD Conway Regional Health System


VADIM PETROV, MD Pain Treatment Centers of America

AMIR QURESHI, MD Arkansas Spine and Pain

MERAJ SIDDIQUI, MD Pain Treatment Centers of America

HEATHER WHALEY, MD Pain Treatment Centers of America


MATTHEW BELL, MD Arkansas Children’s Northwest

KELLY BURKS, MD Arkansas Allergy and Asthma


Little Rock Allergy & Asthma Clinic


Arkansas Children’s Hospital

TAMARA T. PERRY, MD Arkansas Children’s Hospital

AMY SCURLOCK, MD Arkansas Children’s Hospital




Groovy Smiles Pediatric Dentistry


Conway Pediatric Dental Group

MICHAEL KITCHENS, DDS Kitchens Pediatric Dentistry


NLR Pediatric Dental Group

JOHN SCOTT, DDS Arkansas Children’s Hospital

SUMMER TYSON, MD Jonesboro Pediatric Dental Group



Ozark Guidance

ATIF AKHTAR, MD Counseling Associates, Inc.

JILL FUSSELL, MD Arkansas Children’s Hospital


Chenal Family Therapy - Rogers



Ozark Guidance



Northwest Arkansas Pediatrics, A MANA Clinic

LOURIE BATTLES, MD The Pediatric Clinic


Kelly tried to lose weight for years, trying every method and diet she came across with little success. By age 44, she weighed 266 pounds, living with high blood pressure, sleep apnea and severe gastric reflux – a condition that did severe damage to her esophagus. She was told that if she didn’t make a change, Kelly could lose her voice forever.

Kelly discovered during her initial appointment with Dr. J.D. Fuller that gastric bypass can completely cure reflux. She decided to move forward with the procedure, and woke up in recovery with her reflux completely gone. She lost more than 130 pounds, bringing her from a size 18-20 to a size 4.

Kelly’s success with the procedure inspired her husband, Timothy, to start his own gastric bypass journey. Timothy not only lost weight, but was able to get off all diabetic medication. Today, they’re living healthier than ever, regularly biking together and even completing a 15-mile bike race.

The Bariatric and Metabolic Institute at Arkansas Heart Hospital didn’t just save Kelly’s vocal cords – it gave her the power to live the life she wanted to. Ready to take the first steps toward your healthiest life? Visit bmi.arheart.com to start your journey today.

Ready to find your freedom? Visit us at bmi.arheart.com to start your journey today. 16-ounce bag of coleslaw mix 3/4 cup Duke’s mayonnaise 1 tablespoon lemon juice 2 tablespoons sweetener (Splenda)  1/2 teaspoon garlic powder  1/4 teaspoon salt  1/2 teaspoon pepper Directions: Combine all ingredients, chill and enjoy! SUMMER SLAW TRY ONE OF KELLY’S FAVORITE LOW-CARB RECIPES FROM BMI! Lose weight. Gain back your voice.

Dr. Tracy Van Es, Audiologist and owner at Little Rock Audiology Clinic has been meeting the hearing needs of Arkansans for over 15 years. Call

Dr. Tracy Van Es has been meeting the hearing needs of Arkansans since 2001. She’s a graduate of the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences and earned her doctorate from the Pennsylvania School of Audiology. Call today to schedule your appointment with Dr. Tracy Van Es.... Because life is worth hearing!

150 Wisener, Cooper & Fergus, DDSCongratulations Dr. Jeff Wisener on being chosen as one of AY Magazine’s Top Healthcare Professionals. ALL PHASES OF DENTISTRY / GENERAL & FAMILY DENTAL / DENTAL IMPLANTS / COSMETIC DENTISTRY / INVISALIGN A healthy smile makes the best first impression! 479-636-7100 wisenercooperfergusdental.com Voted Northwest Arkansas’ Best Cosmetic Dentist CARE. Levi Hospital, 300 Prospect Ave. Hot Springs, Arkansas 71901 Levi Hospital – Healing Mind & Body Since 1914 Levi Hospital is a 501 (C) - (3) non-profit organization. Financial assistance is available for those who qualify. Levi Hospital would like to congratulate Dr. John Downes on being voted Best of Psychiatry in Central Arkansas. www.levihospital.com From first light, to long into the night. Our team is here doing what we do best, providing you with quality care. • Adult Inpatient Psychiatric Care • Transitions Behavioral Health Services (501) 664-5511
500 S University, Suite 405 Doctors Building Little Rock, AR
us in the
today to schedule your appointment with Dr. Tracy Van Es and help someone you love discover better hearing. Don’t forget to vote for
AY Magazine Best of 2020 Awards!
We’re “Hear” To Help
500 S University, Suite 405 Doctors Building Little Rock, AR 72205
Legacy offers a comprehensive team approach to deliver outstanding neurological care. Legacy Neurosurgery 8201 Cantrell Road | Suite 265 | Little Rock | 501.661.0077 Legacy Surgery Center 5800 W 10th St. | Suite 206 | Little Rock | 501.661.0910 legacyneuro.com Thank youto our patients!
Scott Schlesinger MD Dominic Maggio MD


Arkansas Children’s Clinic - Lowell


Northwest Arkansas Pediatrics, A MANA Clinic

SARAH BONE, MD Arkansas Pediatric Clinic

CLAY BRASHEARS, MD Main Street Medical Clinic

JERRY BYRUM, MD All for Kids Pediatric Clinic

EZRA COLE, MD Sager Creek Pediatrics


Northwest Arkansas Pediatrics, A MANA Clinic


Northwest Arkansas Pediatrics, A MANA Clinic

ANTON DUKE, MD Arkansas Pediatric Clinic

TONY ELIAS, MD All for Kids Pediatric Clinic


Northwest Arkansas Pediatrics, A MANA Clinic

ASHLEY HALPAIN, MD All for Kids Pediatric Clinic


Northwest Arkansas Pediatrics, A MANA Clinic

ANTHONY JOHNSON, MD Arkansas Pediatric Clinic


Northwest Arkansas Pediatrics, A MANA Clinic


Northwest Arkansas Pediatrics, A MANA Clinic


All for Kids Pediatric Clinic


Northwest Arkansas Pediatrics, A MANA Clinic

DAWN MARTIN, MD All for Kids Pediatric Clinic


Arkansas Pediatrics of Conway

AMANDA MERRICK, MD,FAAP Central Arkansas Pediatric Clinic

LORI MONTGOMERY, MD Arkansas Pediatric Clinic

JOSHUA O’NEILL, MD Little Rock Pediatric Clinic

CATHERINE ROBBEN, MD Little Rock Pediatric Clinic

CHAD RODGERS, MD Little Rock Pediatric Clinic

STACY SAX, MD Arkansas Pediatric Clinic


Northwest Arkansas Pediatrics, A MANA Clinic

KIM SKELLEY, MD All for Kids Pediatric Clinic

AARON STRONG, MD Little Rock Pediatric Clinic

JULIE L. TATE, MD Living Tree Pediatrics

VIRGINIA L. THOMAS, MD Northwest Arkansas Pediatrics, A MANA Clinic

DAVID WEED, MD, FAAP Central Arkansas Pediatric Clinic

SEPTEMBER WESTBROOK, MD All for Kids Pediatric Clinic

DALE WILKINS, MD Unity Health Clinic Searcy

LAURA WILSON, MD Sherwood Family Medical Center

ROB WINNINGHAM, MD, FAAP Sherwood Family Medical Center


MELVIN DASSINGER, MD Arkansas Children’s Hospital


ROY DENTON, MD Conway Regional Rehabilitation Hospital

KEVIN M. HURLBUT, MD Encompass Health Rehabilitation Hospital


KELLEY GLENN, PT, DPT Physical Therapy Advantage

MATT JACKSON, PT Lonoke Physical Therapy & ProMotion Physical Therapy

CRYSTAL LACKEY, PT, DPT The Center for Health and Wellness

DEREK LAGEMANN, PT, DPT, FAAOMPT Physical Therapy Institute

STEVE LONGINOTTI, MSPT Bowen Hefley Orthopedics

BEN MILHOLEN, DPT Arkansas Osteopractic

BETH MILLIGAN, PT Conway Regional Health System

MARLA J. MURPHY, DPT Exceptional Physical Therapy

REID PARNELL, DPT Pain Treatment Centers of America

LISA SALLINGS, MSPT Bowen Hefley Orthopedics

MATT THORNTON, MSPT Bowen Hefley Orthopedics

ROB TILLMAN, PT, MOMT Ortho Rehab & Specialty Centers

DEBBIE WILLIAMSON, MSPT Bowen Hefley Orthopedics

GENA WOODWARD, MS Pain Care Associates


BRANDON DODDS, PA-C Unity Ortho and Spine Clinic Searcy

PAUL RODEN, PA-C Saline Memorial Hospital


JIM ENGLISH, MD, FACS, FICS English Plastic and Cosmetic Surgery Center


H. DANIEL ATWOOD, MD Surgical Arts Surgery Center


MARK KENDALL, MD Plastic Surgery & Hand Center

MELANIE PRINCE, MD Prince Plastic Surgery

KRIS SHEWMAKE, MD, FACS Shewmake Plastic Surgery

GENE SLOAN, MD, FACS Aesthetic Plastic Surgery

MICHAEL L. SPANN, MD Little Rock Plastic Surgery


Northwest Arkansas Center for Plastic Surgery

ROBERT TAYLOR, MD, FACS Taylor Plastic Surgery

R. DOUGLAS VANDERPOOL, MD Vanderpool Cosmetic Plastic Surgery

ERIC WRIGHT, MD Wright Plastic Surgery



Foot & Ankle Associates of Central Arkansas

JESSIE B. BURKS, DPM Bowen Hefley Orthopedics


Foot & Ankle Associates of Central Arkansas


Foot & Ankle Associates of Central Arkansas


Crestwood Foot Clinic


CHI St. Vincent Little Rock Diagnostic Clinic


Seiter Foot and Ankle Specialists, PA


CARTI’s patient focused cancer experts are here to serve you in more than 18 locations across the state. If you need a trusted and compassionate cancer specialist, ask your provider to refer you to CARTI.

YOUR BEST CHOICE. OUR TEAM. 501.906.3000 | CARTI .com

Voted AY ’s best in Obstetrics & Gynecology

Conway Women’s Health Center congratulates TJ Moix on being named one of AY’s Best Non-Surgical Cosmetic Clinic.

We offer a variety of medspa services at Conway Women's Med Spa and we are proud to offer our patients exceptional care with cutting edge treatments producing extraordinary results. A progressive array of equipment, products and treatments have been meticulously selected to ensure our patients satisfaction.

2425 Dave Ward Drive Suite 102 • Gordy Building • Conway 501-932-0936 • medspa@cwhc.org

2519 College Ave • Conway • 501-450-3920 2526 Hwy 65 South, Suite #205 • Clinton • 501-450-3420 conwaywomen.com

TJ Moix Dr. Johnson Dr. Martin
SAME-DAY/NEXT-DAY APPOINTMENTS AVAILABLE MATT REYNOLDS, PA-C 501-791-7546 ARKANSASDERMATOLOGY.COM Being the Best is Something We Work Toward Everyday. Dr. Bev. Foster has been one of Central Arkansas’ favorite Chiropractic physicians for over 30 years and has been continually voted “Best Chiropractor” by readers of Arkansas Democrat
the Arkansas Times and AY Magazine. Board certified in Chiropractic Orthopedics, Dr. Foster has been a guest lecturer at UAMS and has served the Arkansas and
Chiropractic examining boards in various capacities.
Rock, AR 501.371.0152
Dr. Bev. Foster
• drbevfoster.com

A Growing Health System for a Growing Community

More Specialists Innovative Services

AccessNew Medical Offices

At Conway Regional, we are committed to providing high-quality, compassionate health care to the communities we serve. We are growing to bring innovative services, more specialists, new medical offices, and expanded access. We are honored to be home to many of AY’s Best Healthcare Professionals in addition to being voted "Best Hospital" in the state by the readers of AY magazine.

Not Just Growing – We’re Growing Together


Washburn Foot and Ankle Center


GABE GALSTER, CP, LPO New Hope Prosthetics & Orthotics

MIKE HORTON, LPO, CPO Horton’s Orthotics and Prosthetics

FRANK SNELL, LPO, CPO, FAAOP Snell Prosthetics & Orthotics


LEIGH ANNE BENNETT, MD Arkansas Psychiatric Clinic

ANGELA C. CHAPMAN, MD Psychology & Counseling Associates


MARY FRANCES DAUT, MD Optimal Pain and Wellness

JOHN DOWNES, MD Levi Hospital

LISA FITZGIBBONS, PHD, ABPP Mercy Clinic Behavioral Health

LANCE C. FOSTER, MD Northwest Arkansas Psychiatry, A MANA Clinic


JACOB MAYS, DO Youth Bridge

RAYMOND MOLDEN, MD Arkansas Psychiatric Clinic

ASIM RAZA, MD Counseling Associates, Inc.

RANDAL S. SCHOLMA, MD Mercy Clinic Behavioral Health

GARY THARP, MD Vivid Health


Optimal Pain and Wellness

RON WAUTERS, MD Unity Health

KATHLEEN M. WONG, MD, PLLC Bridges to Wellbeing, LLC


REBECCA SCHLAU, PSY.D Saline Psychology Services





DANIEL CLARK, MD Conway Regional Health System

DANA COKER, MD St. Bernards Healthcare


SETH LITTLE, MD St. Bernards Healthcare

CADE MARTIN, MD St. Bernards Healthcare


JAMES C. (JAY) THORPE, DO Mercy Hospital




CHI St. Vincent Little Rock Diagnostic Clinic

SWETHA BODDEDA, MD Conway Regional Health System

COLUMBUS BROWN IV, MD Arkansas Rheumatology Center

JASEN CHI, MD Chi Arthritis and Rheumatology Associates


CHI St. Vincent Little Rock Diagnostic Clinic


CHI St. Vincent Little Rock Diagnostic Clinic


Arthritis Center of the Ozarks

JESSICA SHORT, MD Washington Regional Medical Center Rheumatology Clinic


CHI St. Vincent Little Rock Diagnostic Clinic

WALTON C. TOY, MD Mercy Clinic Rheumatology


CHI St. Vincent Little Rock Diagnostic Clinic


CHI St. Vincent Little Rock Diagnostic Clinic


KYLIE HILLIARD, OD Southern Eye Associates

STEPHEN HUDDLESTON, MD Southern Eye Associates

WAYNE HUDEC, MD Ozark Surgical Associates

JEFFREY KELLAR, MD, FACS Ozark Surgical Associates

ALI KRISHT, MD, FACS CHI St. Vincent Neuroscience Institute

JOSH LITTLE, MD Southern Eye Associates

RONALD MULLIS, MD Ozark Surgical Associates

APRIL TURNER, DO Baptist Health


MICHAEL J. CROSS, MD, FACS Highlands Oncology Group

JOSEPH IVY, MD Highlands Oncology Group


MICHAEL M. POLLOCK, MD Baptist Health Surgical Clinic



EDGAR JOSEPH CHAUVIN, MD Mercy Clinic Cardiovascular and Thoracic Surgery


Walker Heart Institute Cardiovascular and Thoracic Surgery Clinic


CALEB BOZEMAN, MD Arkansas Urology


STEPHEN CANON, MD Arkansas Children’s Hospital

EDWIN DIAZ, MD, MBA Arkansas Urology

TIM GOODSON, MD Arkansas Urology

ROBBIE HURTT, MD Arkansas Urology

RONALD G. KUHN, MD Arkansas Urology


JEFF MAROTTE, MD Arkansas Urology

D. KEITH MOONEY, MD Arkansas Urology

TAYLOR MOORE, MD Arkansas Urology

GAIL REEDE JONES, MD Arkansas Urology

LADD J. SCRIBER, MD St. Bernards Healthcare

Call Elder Independence at (501)
today for a complimentary consultation.
In-home care for your aging or disabled loved one that includes assistance with: • Activities of Daily Living • Light Housekeeping • Medication Reminders • Hospital Sitter Services • Companionship • Respite Care • Transportation • Meal Preparation • Dementia Care • Hospice Support Elder Independence Home Care, Congratulates Tonda Gresham, RN on being voted one of the top healthcare professionals by the readers of AY Magazine for 2022.
Kim Clatworthy, Owner | info@elderindependence.com Online at: ElderIndependence.com
866-260-0542 | www.arksurgicalhospital.com Physician Owned. Patient Focused. SETTING THE STANDARD FOR EXCEPTIONAL CARE When it comes to your joint and spine health, you deserve care from the best. Thanks for naming us just that. Thank you, Arkansas, for recognizing our surgeons as some of AY Magazine’s Best Healthcare Professionals of Central Arkansas! We work hard to provide exceptional care so you can get back to doing what you love without pain. Discover what sets us apart. Make Arkansas Surgical Hospital your hospital. BEST OF NEUROLOGICAL SURGERY Dr. Zachary Mason Dr. Brad Thomas BEST OF BREAST CANCER SURGERY & BEST OF SURGICAL ONCOLOGY Dr. Dana Abraham BEST OF PODIATRY Dr. Jesse Burks BEST OF HAND SURGERY Dr. David Rhodes Dr. Clay Riley BEST OF ORTHOPEDIC SURGERY Dr. Paul K. Edwards Dr. William Hefley, Jr. Dr. Kenneth Martin BEST OF ORTHOPEDICS Dr. Jerry Lorio Dr. Scott Bowen Dr. William Hefley, Jr. Dr. Samuel A. Moore Dr. Larry Nguyen Dr. Jason Stewart

Central Clinic 701 N. University, Suite 100 (501)664-4810

West Clinic 4208 N. Rodney Parham (501)228-7200

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This side of SEVEN

Better Than Beating Alabama

IIt’s been nearly sixteen years since the Arkansas Razorbacks last defeated the Crimson Tide of Alabama in football.

And it has now been sixteen years since we lost the voice that would have narrated that 24-23 double-overtime victory. All the excitement and anticipation of a new football season was steadily building in the summer of 2006 when, on July 31, a car driven by Paul Eells crossed the median of Interstate 40 near Russellville and crashed into an other car driven by Billie Jo Burton of Dover. Both died instantly.

A little shy of sixteen years is also how long Vickie Eells was left to navigate life without her soulmate. Vickie died on Febru ary 21, 2022, after a short battle with cancer. She was 72.

“She was fighting for her life,” her pastor shared at her graveside service. “She wasn’t wanting to die, but she said, 'When my time comes I know where I’m going to be. I’m confident in where I’m go ing to be. I’m going to be with Je sus, I’m going to be reunited with Paul, and I’m going to dwell in the House of the Lord forever.'”

That seems to be how it goes with great love affairs. The race of life is run together until one part ner crosses the finish line and, for the other, the race continues on toward the promise of a heav enly reunion. That is the hope for Christ-followers.

Paul Eells was the Voice of the Razorbacks for nearly 30 years. Following Paul’s death, one newspaper editorialist summed up his sta tus this way: “Being the voice of the Razorbacks is a title in Arkansas only a little less significant than head coach and slightly more elevated than governor.” I guess that made Vickie the First Lady of Razorback broadcasting, although her loud and fun-loving personality wasn’t

meant to play second-string to anyone — not even her legendary love.

“It’s amazing how ‘exercise’ and ‘extra fries’ sound so much alike.”

“I just found out I’m colorblind. It hit me right out of the green.”

“Being a little older, I’m fortunate to have someone call and check up on me every day. He is from India and is concerned about my car warranty.”

Dad jokes? Nope. They are Vickie jokes, posted on her Facebook page. Vickie shared not only dry humor on social media but also messages of inspiration, prayer requests, cute animal videos, photos of family and grandchildren, and yes, thoughts about Paul. In March of 2018, nearly 12 years after Paul’s death, Vickie posted, “Those who think there is a time limit when grieving have never lost a piece of their heart.”

I remember running into Vickie shortly after Paul’s funeral. She was visiting the Channel 7 sports office and boxing up three de cades worth of memories and memorabilia. Her son, Bran don, had just returned to Chicago, and her sister San dra was set to return to Ten nessee in a few days. Vickie told me she was not yet living day-to-day. Things were still hour-to-hour.

She looked at Paul’s desk calendar, which listed all of Paul’s appointments and speaking engage ments. Paul was a much sought-after public speaker, and because he had trouble saying no, he spoke to civic and religious groups often.

Just after his death, Paul was scheduled to speak to the University of Arkansas Capital Chapter Alumni Association. I knew the chapter

Paul Eells (Photo courtesy of University of Arkansas)

president, and he asked me to speak in Paul’s place. The following is a portion of what I shared:

“If you have read your sports page today, then you know that there were some problems with the blood samples col lected after Paul’s accident. The samples were delayed in get ting tested and therefore could not be tested. Not that Paul’s blood sample would have revealed anything about the cause of the crash. There were no drugs or alcohol in his system. An autopsy might have revealed if Paul suffered a massive heart attack or stroke, but there was no autopsy done because no autopsy was requested. What caused the wreck will remain a mystery, although the State Trooper who investigated and who saw no evidence of braking believes that Paul was dead before he crossed the median into the oncoming lanes of In terstate 40 traffic.

If only those lanes could have been empty. The death of Billie Jo Burton would have devastated Paul. Vickie has said that if it was Ms. Burton’s time to die, it was a blessing that Paul went with her because he wouldn’t have been able to live with the knowledge that he, however unintentionally, had caused her death.

Steve Sullivan and I went to Dover to attend the Burton memorial service. We were a little apprehensive going in but were very warmly received. We learned a lot about B.J. Burton, and the fact is, she and Paul were like two peas in a pod. They both loved sports. They both were extremely generous. They were both Christians who were will ing to share their faith when the opportunity presented itself. She was a huge Razorback fan and a big Paul Eells fan, too. At first, when I learned that I thought to myself, ‘Man, how ironic.’ But then I thought about it some more, and it would be bigger news had Paul hit someone who was not a fan of his.

How many people do you know who you have never heard swear?

How many people do you know who you have never heard speak bad about someone else?

How many people do you know who you have never heard anything bad said about?

How many people leave you feeling better after every meeting or every conversation?

Paul was Mr. Positive, Mr. Popular. A man loved by the people because he loved the people. At a restaurant, Paul’s food would get cold while he visited with the admirer who would inevitably approach. He told his pastor that his life could be summed up this way: He loved the Lord, he loved people, and he loved life.

Six years ago, Paul discovered a church and a pastor in his home town of Maumelle with whom he really connected. Soon word was out that Paul Eells was willing to speak to groups about his faith and his

testimony as well as his career and the Razorbacks. Paul was recently featured in The Spirit magazine and interviewed about his faith. Here is an excerpt:

“Eells’ faith has also helped him in the workplace. ‘It’s given me patience. There are a lot of things that could make you impatient in a newsroom.’

Eells feels that demonstrating Christ’s love by example will touch someone’s life. ‘I’ve never taken someone aside and said, ‘Hey, do you have Jesus in your life?’ I think people who know me and who are around me see the peace in my life,’ said Eells. ‘I try to treat others the way I want to be treated. With respect.’”

I share this with you because although Paul was known as a sports broadcaster, I think he would want to be remembered as a follower of Christ and would like for his life to make a difference beyond sports. I asked Vickie what Paul would think about the scholarship fund that had been created in his name. She told me Paul would be embarrassed. He would be overwhelmed and feel unworthy of such an honor. But he would accept the honor gratefully as a blessing — a way God was using his life and his celebrity to benefit a fellow human being.”

So, will Paul and Vickie be back together in Heaven? Yes, but not as husband and wife. Jesus made it clear to the religious leaders that marriage is not necessary in the afterlife. Vickie and Paul will be re united as fellow followers of Christ. The promise of such a reunion is described by David following the death of his infant son: “I shall go to him, but he will not return to me” (2 Sam 12:23). And it is a reunion that defies description. “What no eye has seen, what no ear has heard, and what no human mind has conceived — the things God has pre pared for those who love him” (1 Cor 2:9).

I can just imagine Paul as he views the heavenly realms, or when he sees Vickie again, reacting with an incredulous “Oh, my!”

Better than beating Alabama.


For two decades, Jason Pederson served as KATV-Channel 7’s Seven On Your Side reporter. Now on the other “side” of his award-win ning time on the news, he now serves as Deputy Chief of Community Engagement for the Arkansas Department of Human Services. His perspective-filled and thought-provoking column, “This Side of Seven,” publishes exclusively in AY About You magazine monthly.

Left: Paul Eells brought character and energy to the scene (Photo by Randy Dixon.) Below: Vickie Eells (Photo courtesy of the Eells family)

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Catching Kristy’s Killer(s)

Kristy Leigh Yates had just nudged past her 15th birthday.

It would be her last.

Yates had a pattern of skip ping school and sneaking out. On the morning of April 24, 1997 — a Thursday, a school day — she headed out and into trouble. Her father, Gor don Yates, had called to make sure she and younger sister, Deanna, were leaving.

Deanna left first, walking in the opposite direction from Kristy, who for now was not allowed back at the Hot Springs Middle School, a consequence of her absenteeism. Gordon was concerned about Summit, the alternative school Kristy had been assigned to. As he said, “It was more for troubled kids.” Skipping school had to have consequences, he agreed, but Kristy hadn't committed a crime, wasn’t having sub stance abuse issues and wasn’t an angry or violent person. No, she was the girl who liked to make friends –– maybe too much so. She was, as her sister said, “a follower.” That might have been a fatal flaw.

Kristy was at checkmate with her father. Gordon, who had full custody of her and Deanna, had become a widowed father of four when the children's stepmother drowned the summer before. Working full time and with his two youngest not yet in preschool, Gordon’s life now was busy, often difficult. He could be forgiven if he had done less. But any man who has held his baby girl in his arms can understand Gordon’s unrelenting focus to do whatever it took to get the best side of his Kristy back.

For three months in the fall, Kristy had been sent by the court system to a residential counseling center in north Arkansas. Gordon had made that happen, motivated by the rape of one of Kristy’s friends who too had run in the night. When Kristy came home after those three months, it seemed like things might now be for the positive. But once she began the new school, the old patterns returned.

Summit didn’t notify Gor don that Kristy cut class that day, but he knew when he got home from work that there was a problem. He started making calls, including one to Kristy’s caseworker in the court system. She suggested knocking on the doors of any one Kristy might think she could hide out with. Kristy, she reassured him, would turn up soon. This was, after all, a fre quent pattern with her. The night came, but Kristy did not.

“When she would run away, she used to call my grand mother from Wendy’s on Grand Avenue just to let her know she was safe,” Deanna said. Kristy’s estranged mother, Dana Conyers, would later tell the media that Kristy had called her, asking her if she could stay over. No, she was told. If she called Dana, that would have been the only call publicly dis closed. By Friday night, there was still no word from Kristy, not even a call to her grandmother.

A hard rain came on Saturday. Inside, watching TV, Gordon heard the news. The Garland County Sheriff’s De


partment had found a woman’s body in the 1300 block of Sleepy Valley Road. Gordon quickly picked up the phone. Kristy was the kid already being mistaken as much older. Despite the best efforts of Kristy’s own community — teachers, caseworkers, counselors, family and, most of all, her father — the “woman” in the pictures that the sheriffs brought to Gordon was indeed that good, sweet kid. The kid who had simply hit her teens and had gone wild. And no matter how cared for she was by those around her, their race against time was now lost. But the race to find Kristy’s killer(s) had just started.

Those responsible left a call ing card of sorts, the location where Kristy was found speak ing for itself. “It’s not too far off the road, maybe 200 feet. You can drive down Sleepy Valley, and you can drive in there. That’s prob ably where people have partied or parked before,” Gordon explains. That and the fact that the assault on Kristy was physical, not sexual, tends to indicate that this might not have been a random sexual predator passing through, but someone she knew that had been to this out-of-the-way location before.

killer(s) is quite possibly still among us — a killer(s) perhaps in our neighborhoods, workplaces, schools or churches, around our chil dren now. And you might not realize you do know something, have seen or heard something, that could help put a stop to this danger.

The questions are there for us: Who was she hanging out with? Who was driving her around? What was the talk in the school halls? Were there other kids who cut that day as well? Was some one seen with bruises or scratches in that timeframe? And most importantly, did anyone see or hear from Kristy on Thursday or Friday? If you do know something and are afraid, you are truly at your safest when law enforce ment is provided with what they need to put this killer(s) away. The information is most secure when given, even anonymously, to the FBI Little Rock at 501-221-9100.


The belief is that this was not where her assault had taken place; it was where she had been placed afterward. “She had on,” Deanna says, “the same jewelry, same jeans, same shoes” that she had dressed in Thursday morning. She was not hidden or covered, simply placed behind a small building, found by a stranger. Kristy’s assault was brutal and extremely violent, a fact still emphasized by the media and law enforcement.

There is, of course, much more to this story than we can tell you. To protect the integrity of this investigation for the future prosecu tion of Kristy’s killer(s), law enforcement needs to keep the details within its ranks. But make no mistake: This is an active, not cold, case. Even in the last few months, law enforcement has met with Gordon and Deanna, interviewed others and analyzed informa tion. Initially, Gordon provided to law enforcement a list of those people he had concerns about.

That list is now in new hands. To its credit, the Sheriff’s De partment invited the FBI in on the case. It’s up to the FBI’s discre tion whether to put their agents and substantial resources behind a case. As Gordon explains, this case was a go for the FBI for several reasons: It involves the murder of a child, it was extreme violence, and it is a case that can be solved.

“We’re still working on it jointly, but the FBI is pushing out the reward and bringing some seriously experienced investigators to work this case,” explains Connor Hagan of the FBI’s Little Rock office.

Yes, the FBI is putting their money on it — literally. The $25,000 they are offering for the arrest and conviction of Kristy’s killer(s) has been brought up to a total of $35,000 by the Yates fam ily. The fact that this case is active means that an extremely violent

Who might know something? Her peers — students who knew Kristy from Summit, Hot Springs Middle School or Cutter Morn ing Start — would now be around 40 years old. The parents or grandparents of her peers might even have a helpful clue, as well as her teachers or counselors. Her mother and stepfather, Harold Dean Conyers, of Hot Springs, are both deceased, but perhaps someone who knew them re members something.

Jackie Dorrell, a Hot Springs private investigator, has posted Kristy’s story on the Facebook page, “Dorrell Investigations.” The huge response — views, messages, phone calls — has surprised Dorrell, as well as “how emotional people are when talking about Kristy. People that were her friends, her neighbors, a babysitter and a counselor.” These people have also told Jackie that Kristy “was a friendly, fun, sweet girl who people adored.”

Based on information received, Dorrell says, “I do believe the suspects are still living in Arkansas. I also believe Kristy either knew the suspect or was acquainted with the suspect in some form. This was not a random act.” Gordon adds, “I think that she was set up, that she went somewhere with their intentions to do what they were going to do and that she wasn’t expecting it.”

You can help: Copy the link to this story, share it on your social media, and ask others to do the same. Another good link to share is the YouTube video, “Cold Case: FBI Takes Over Investigation of Kristy Yates’ Murder” recently produced by Andrew Mobley of the (Hot Springs) Sentinel Record. Talk about it as well — to ev eryone.

Together, as part of Kristy’s community, let’s take this case all the way to the courtroom.

A proud GRITS (Girl Raised In The South), Sarah Russell has also lived in NYC, Miami, San Francisco, Denver and Tucson working in journalism, public relations, finance and education. Now at home, she is happiest when hovering over a keyboard, weaving words together.

REWARD The FBI is offering a reward of up to $25,000 for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the individual(s) responsible for the death of Kristy Leigh Yates. DETAILS The Federal Bureau of Investigation in Little Rock, Arkansas, is seeking information regarding the death of Kristy Leigh Yates. On April 26, 1997, 15-year-old Kristy was brutally murdered, and her body was discovered in northern Garland County, Arkansas. Kristy was last seen at the Hot Springs Mall on April 25, 1997. Investigators believe the individual(s) responsible for Kristy’s death may reside in Arkansas. If you have any information concerning this case, please contact the Little Rock Office of the FBI at (501) 221-9100, your local FBI office, or the nearest American Embassy or Consulate Field Office: Little Rock
Victim April 26, 1997
Springs, Arkansas


Thosereaders expecting details on a new line dance may be surprised to learn that the term “dogtrot” refers to a classic ar chitectural style of the South. It’s usually associ ated with poor white culture, be it in the moun tains or the Delta lowlands.

Dogtrot houses were almost always built in phases. The first “pen” – or a small structure of four log walls fastened together with notched corners – provided a very rudimentary home. Requiring only basic tools, the single pen was quick and simple to construct. Given its com pact dimensions, the pen encouraged the use of short logs, which were plentiful and fairly easy to maneuver into place. With a door, a fireplace occupying most of one wall, makeshift windows and either roughly dressed timbers or bare dirt for a floor, it was, at best, a primitive but func tional shelter.

As the family’s needs grew, the settler added another pen anywhere from six to twelve feet apart from the first and then connected them with a common roof. In most double-pen houses, one end provided sleeping accommodations, and the other served kitchen and dining activities. The family’s canine pet often graced the open space between the two pens, giving the style its name “dogtrot.”

Although the dogtrot is a distinctly American product, architectural historians disagree on its antecedent. Some claim Swedes and Finns intro duced it to the continent, others insist that German immigrants brought the technique with them, and a third theory suggests a relationship with double-pen houses from Africa. Regardless of its provenance, the South ern dogtrot illustrates the ingenuity of pioneers who had limited materials, even less money and no formal architectural training.

Contemporary architects have made some fascinating discoveries about advantages of the fundamental dogtrot design. Despite its rustic, home spun appearance, the traditional dogtrot is particularly well adapted to the Southern climate, with its wide porches and open breezeway providing passive ventilation – which is really no big surprise. But researchers at Mis sissippi State University have found that moving air is subjected to a pres sure differential as it interacts with the dogtrot structure. As a result, wind velocities within the breezeway are substantially higher than those on the exterior. In fact, the average wind speeds inside the breezeway are over one and a half times greater than the outside winds. While our pioneer fore fathers may have lacked formal training, they knew what they were doing!

Much like swinging bridges, grist mills and ferries, dogtrots are disap pearing from the Arkansas scene. But with a bit of research and some time

on the road, the curious can still inspect these architectural relics. There’s a wonderful example of a dogtrot home in downtown Little Rock at the Historic Arkansas Museum. Known as the Plum Bayou House and dating from the 1830s, it was built with logs from ancient cypress trees. Other restored dogtrot houses can be found at the Scott Plantation Settlement a few miles east of Little Rock, the Grant County Museum in Sheridan and Arkansas Post Museum near Gillett.

My personal favorite dogtrot is the Wolf House at Norfork. Built in 1829, this imposing, two-story building overlooks the junction of the White and North Fork rivers. The oldest public structure in Arkansas, it was erected by Major Jacob Wolf to serve as a courthouse with the court room occupying the top floor and offices in the lower level. Fully restored about a decade ago, it could be – according to writer Donald Harrington – “a visual symbol for the whole state.”

Given its sheer size, the Wolf House isn’t a typical example of a dog trot structure. The downstairs pens are each 18 feet square, separated by a 12-foot dogtrot. The builders used precise dovetail joints – and that’s a chief reason the building still stands nearly two centuries after its original construction.

Unpainted, unsophisticated, often uncomfortable and certainly unpre tentious, dogtrots remind us of the challenges our ancestors faced – and their resourcefulness in overcoming them. Check one out when you get the chance.

Joe David Rice, former tourism director of Arkansas Parks and Tourism, has written Arkansas Backstories, a delightful book of short stories from A through Z that introduces readers to the state's lesser-known aspects. Rice's goal is to help readers acknowledge that Arkansas is a unique and fascinating combination of land and people – one to be proud of and one certainly worth sharing.

Each month, AY will share one of the 165 distinctive essays. We hope these stories will give you a new appreciation for this geographically compact but delightfully complex place we call home. These Arkansas Backstories columns appear courtesy of the Butler Center for Arkansas Studies at the Central Arkansas Library System. The essays have been collected and published by Butler Center Books in a two-volume set, both of which are now available to purchase at Amazon and the University of Arkansas Press.

Dogtrot House, Prairie Grove Battlefield State Park in Washington County, Arkansas. Photo by Dan Davis.
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