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NOVEMBER / DECEMBER 2017

Enhancing A Classic Holiday gift ideas

bullying on the rise

tiny house trend


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TABLE OF CONTENTS

www.localmag411.com Local. Magazine

Local_LittleRock

TINY HOUSE TREND 5

Tiny houses are all the rage. Read to find out how you can get one locally!

5 15

BULLYING ON THE RISE 7-8

Bullying is a subject we encounter often. We all have probably experienced it, and many of us have seen children continually victimized by it.

EAT LOCAL / SHOP LOCAL 10-11

Discover local restaurants, shops and services in central Arkansas.

BE A LOCALIST 12

Meet Mark Abernathy: A local that has been bringing great food and renowned musicians to the Arkansas’ capital city since 1971.

FEATURED FAVORITE 15 The Southern Table

ENHANCING A CLASSIC 16-17

What makes a person say, “That’s my coffee shop”?

FEATURED RECIPE 20

Mango Pineapple Salsa from Chef Amanda ivy

5 REASONS TO SHOP LOCAL 21

16 28 download the app

now!

Why you should shop local during the holiday season.

HOLIDAY GIFT GUIDE 22

Gift ideas from a few local shops in your area.

ME & MCGEE 24

Growing a business through personal relationships.

PET THERAPY 27

Therapy Pets Provide an Alternative Method of Emotional Support.

FEATURED ARTIST: DARREN COLLINS 28 Local hip-hop artist who loves his city, and he uses his music to build it up.

HAVE YOU BEEN SERVED? 30

Service is defined as, “the action of helping or doing work for someone.” This is the cornerstone of the hospitality industry.

PUBLISHERS

Rich Niemeyer Kaitlin Schmidt

CREATIVE DIRECTOR Kaitlin Schmidt

COPY EDITOR Stacey Bowers

STAFF WRITER Adam Cherepski

STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER Masters Media Productions

CONTRIBUTING WRITERS

Logan Duvall, April Lane, Richard Ledbetter, Jillian McGehee

ACCOUNT EXECUTIVES Ladye Albini Rich Niemeyer

For advertising information, please call 501-476-4200. For Subscription services, please call 501-554-1126. Local. Magazine is published bimonthly by 411 Publications, Inc. P.O. Box 1835, N. Little Rock, AR 72115 411publications@gmail.com The contents of Local. are copyrighted, and material contained herein may not be copied or reproduced in any manner without the written consent of the publisher. CONTRIBUTOR SPOTLIGHT ADAM CHEREPSKI Adam received his Master’s degree in Education from UALR. He enjoys everything there is to do with food, from cooking at home to dining at locally-owned establishments. Writing is a passion of his. Be sure to check out his blog, oneflewovermyhouse.tumblr. com and on Facebook at One Flew Over My House. RICHARD LEDBETTER Richard Ledbetter resides among the gentle-rolling hills of his South-Arkansas farm, where he penned and published a pair of historical novels, "The Branch and the Vine" and "Witness Tree;1910." He regularly contributes to several regional periodicals and performed feature roles in a number of Arkansas made movies.

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Cheeses Honey Salsa Pickles Jams & Jellies

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2055 Main St. Jonesboro, AR

A special Thank You to our sponsors, volunteers and donors. Happy Holidays from The First Tee Staff! See what's happening on our website and social media!

The First Tee of Central Arkansas

4

TheFirstTeeLR

@TheFirstTeeLR

thefirstteeofcentralarkansas.com


The Big Trend Of Tiny Houses - Jillian McGehee

T

iny houses are all the rage. You see them in magazines, on TV, on social media and with a charming appeal. Many reasons are behind people’s desires to live in smaller spaces. Among them are environmental concerns, financial concerns and the desire to have more time and freedom, according to thetinylife.com. “For most Americans 1/3 to 1/2 of their income is dedicated to the roof over their head; this translates to 15 years of working over your lifetime just to pay for it, and because of it 76% of Americans are living paycheck to paycheck,” states the website dedicated to the tiny house lifestyle.

The typical American home is around 2,600 square feet, while a tiny house is between 100 and 400 square feet. “Tiny houses come in all shapes, sizes and forms, but they enable simpler living in a smaller, more efficient space,” according to the Tiny Life. In central Arkansas, Mike and Susan Hayman are catering to the tiny house lifestyle. The couple opened Ozark Tiny House Outlet in Bryant in July 2017. “This concept really started as a park model house movement in retirement communities across the country years ago,” Mike said. “It then moved into recreational housing options and rental investments. With the help of magazines as well as programs on TV, such as HGTV, the interest in tiny house living options from a neat and small housing alternative to a full-blown movement of those who want to escape high utility and maintenance living cost has exploded. People are looking to invest in a more practical solution to living and saving, however they choose to use their tiny house.” The reasons customers come to Ozark Tiny House Outlet are many, Mike said, noting many come just because they’re curious. “They have seen the shows or articles about tiny houses and want to see one for themselves.” The Haymans’ homes are open all day for everyone to comfortably tour the different

models. “We try to be there for each and everyone who has a need or want for tiny houses or is undecided and curious if this a solution to their current situation or future interest,” he noted. Mike Hayman began his career in the manufactured home industry more than 20 years ago. He says his motivation for providing affordable housing helped expedite his career into managing numerous dealerships with top companies and products. About five years ago, he and his wife were compelled to open their own dealership where they could offer a great product at an even lower price. “Our original plan was tiny houses,” he recalled. “We visited numerous plants that offered these house plans, but we were hesitant to only offer higher price points. Even though the product was extremely well built, along with unbelievable creativeness for the size, we felt waiting for a product that covered a multitude of needs at a lower price point was what we were really wanting to offer tiny house customers. Therefore, we opened our dealership as a traditional manufactured home lot and waited.” This past summer, the opportunity arose to carry a product to meet everyone’s needs and Ozark Tiny House Outlet was born. “These tiny houses are great alternatives for temporary housing, in-law quarters, guest housing, recreational cabins, rental units, office units, pool houses and more,” Mike said. “They are constructed to last and filled with all the basics needed to live comfortably, minimally and efficiently.”

Ozark does offer some customizations, Mike added, such as windows, color options and appliances. “But we’re finding the designs we carry are proving to already be great for many uses with no changes necessary. However, we do offer a higher price point product where multiple changes are an option.” For the most part when it comes to customization, Mike said, Ozark tries to keep product that has multiple options and floor

plans to meet everyone's needs. “Major customizing, such as moving walls or totally reconstructing an already blue printed plan, can become more expensive than what we are trying to offer. There are a lot of tiny house constructions in progress across the county and growing every day, from on-site building to everyday travel models and design. Some reach as high as $100,000 plus on the market with some extreme talent in design and craftsmanship and well worth it to those that can see the time and effort put into the multitude of designs.”

The products Ozark carries are the results of an assembly line process with reputable assembly line housing success, he said. “This ensures we can offer a product that may not be as crafty as the individual or personal built, but that is priced for all aspects, due to the ability to purchase products in bulk and pass the savings straight to the consumer.” The Haymans don’t live in a tiny house, Mike said, noting their family is a bit too large at the time, “But we have come to love this concept as much as our customers, and it will definitely be in our future either to live in one full time or to use as a recreational getaway.” However you look at it or whatever size house you choose to live in, “tiny house use is here to stay, and we are proud to be a part of a solution to those in search of this new way of life,” Mike said. Ozark Tiny House Outlet is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday and located at 25805 1-30 Frontage Road. Visit ozarktinyhouseoutlet.com for more information.

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Christmas Music Holiday Shopping Amazing Door Prizes! Complimentary Hot Chocolate Bar with all the fixings!

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Bullying on the Rise - April Lane

Bullying is a subject we encounter often. We all have probably experienced it, and many of us have seen children continually victimized by it. Sadly, it has become something that is found in many schools, businesses and institutions. Bullying is a fact of life for many kids in public schools, affecting children who are already dealing with the intense pressures of growing up in the 21st century. Stopbullying.gov defines bullying as being mean to another kid repeatedly. This often includes: • Teasing • Talking about hurting someone • Spreading rumors • Leaving kids out on purpose • Attacking someone by hitting them or yelling at them Here are some facts on what bullying really looks like according to dosomething.org. 1. Over 3.2 million students are victims of bullying each year. 2. Approximately 160,000 teens skip school every day because of bullying. 3. 17% of American students report being bullied 2 to 3 times a month or more within a school semester. 4. 1 in 4 teachers see nothing wrong with bullying and will only intervene 4% of the time. 5. By age 14, less than 30% of boys and 40% of girls will talk to their peers about bullying. 6. Over 67% of students believe that schools respond poorly to bullying, with a high percentage of students believing that adult

help is infrequent and ineffective. 7. 71% of students report incidents of bullying as a problem at their school. 8. 90% of 4th through 8th graders report being victims of bullying. 9. 1 in 10 students drops out of school because of repeated bullying. 10. As boys age they are less and less likely to feel sympathy for victims of bullying. In fact, they are more likely to add to the problem than solve it. 11. Physical bullying increases in elementary school, peaks in middle school and declines in high school. Verbal abuse, on the other hand, remains constant. After speaking to parents who have decided to stand up together and unite for one common goal, acceptance, there is no doubt that this issue is receiving some attention among parents, administrators and the community at large. The concerns are rising, and the next large concern for many parents is bullying related suicides. It seems like there is no concrete reason why one child is bullied over another. Sometimes it can be physical appearance, lack of social interaction and often it can be simply that a child is just different and stands out from the crowd. No matter what the data shows, what most parents can unanimously agree on is that until it happens to your family, there is no way to quite understand the real impact bullying can have on a child. Most children are simply trying to find their way and get some understanding of the way in which the world works. School is the primary way in which a child learns to develop some of

this understanding. However, bullying does not always happen in person. Cyberbullying is a type of bullying that happens online or through text messages or emails. It includes posting rumors on sites like Facebook, sharing embarrassing pictures or videos and making fake profiles or websites. Kids who are bullied often feel secluded and cut off from the world. This can cause them to feel powerless, alone and different, leading to mental health concerns that can last a lifetime. Kids who are bullied can have a challenging time standing up for themselves, thinking that the bully is more powerful than they are, making them feel sick or become sad, lonely and nervous and eventually having major problems in school and social surroundings. It takes support from administration, teachers, parents and children who will report incidents to adults. That is why this issue is so important and why the response to bullying is necessary. It is about acknowledging that the problem does exist, conducting some analysis of the problem when it is identified and formulating an effective response that will allow for a learning environment for all children so that no child is left slipping through the cracks. It is very challenging to tackle the issue of bullying effectively. It will take a village, and it will take understanding and patience from all sides.

It is a sad reality that many within the community do not feel that bullying is an issue that can be promptly addressed because the real-time data of the effects of bullying on our children is hard to quantify. So many other variables are occurring that bullying in school is merely one challenge some children face. The response to bullying has often been addressed parent-to-parent when possible, which is the 7


first suggested step after addressing it with the child’s teacher. The next step is to inform the administration that there is an ongoing problem. Third is to contact a board member and inform them a problem has been identified and filed with the administration. These steps can often be frustrating for parents who feel that their child is a victim of bullying. Sometimes it works, and sometimes it does not. For a suffering parent and child, this can really add undue stress to an already stressful situation. Parents who are met with this issue, as hard as it will be, begin with the end in mind. The longterm goal is to relieve the stressful situation of the child being bullied. The short-term goal needs to reflect that to be effective. Immediately informing the teacher can often resolve the problem before it becomes a persistent one. If it continues, your next step is to contact the administration. The response will not always be satisfying; n many cases, parents say the issues do not get resolved and they feel as though there are not enough policies in place to really drill down to the root of the problem. Parents who encourage bullying and take it lightly can also be an issue that is frustrating to other parents and administrations attempting to address bullying. Instructions do start in the home. Lack of oversight there can often create problems that surface in the school districts.

So what is the solution? There is not just one. It is going to take a village to address the issue, and it won’t happen overnight. Acknowledgment of the realities of bullying is the first step toward empowering children to understand it and what to do when they are met with it face to face In 2016, Arkansas was ranked as worst state in the nation at controlling bullying according to wallethub.com. In the article that lists the rankings, Wallethub states that "every day in America, more than 160,000 children miss school out of fear of being bullied, according to National Education Association estimates. Bullying takes many forms, ranging from the seemingly innocuous name-calling to the more harmful cyberbullying to severe physical violence. It happens everywhere, at all times to the most vulnerable of kids, especially those who are obese, gay or have a disability." Some of the more recent stories of bullying that are surfacing are shedding even more light on this issue. Social media has lit up with comments coming from parents vocalizing that they and their children have experienced bullying first hand. Some children have dropped out of school due to the issue, and some have abruptly moved school districts. Where there is bullying, there are usually those who will stand up to it and call it out for what it is. This can also be tricky and cause some

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children to get into trouble by looking like they are causing problems when they are trying to do the right thing and stick up for a friend. Some schools are starting to look at how to properly address the issue, and many administrations are working hard behind the scenes to combat the problem so that does not continue to plague children effected. There are many parents working together to do just that. Nationally, the issue is beginning to attract a lot of attention, and schools are beginning to focus on the need for boards within local school districts to take a closer look. Sometimes this is hard for parents to hear, but change takes time.

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eat

Sonny Williams Steak Room offers the finest beef, pork, lamb, and seafood dishes. The legendary entrees, along with the vast cocktail and wine selection and delicious desserts, will ensure a great experience. 500 President Clinton Ave in Little Rock. 501-324-2999

Cabot Meat Market offers a variety of retail meats and seafood including steaks, sausages, pork, hamburgers, chicken and side items. There are family pack specials and salsas, honey, jams and jellies. Processing also available. 119 N. Adams St. in Cabot. 501-843-5511

Say Cheese Food Truck provides delicious handcrafted Sandwiches. Co-owners, Brian Bostic and Trent Moss are following the dream of owning a food truck, serving a variety of grilled cheese sandwiches and fresh made soups with high quality ingredients. @saycheesesandwiches

Faby's Restaurant #2 is located in the heart of downtown Conway. They have a full menu consisting of authentic Mexican and Continental cuisine that will fill your stomach without emptying your wallet. 21023 Front Street in Conway. 501-513-1199

K Bird honors the regional cuisines and street food of Southeast Asia & has definitely become a local favorite. Using all fresh ingredients, the simple menu offers favorites such as pad Thai, fried rice & curry dishes are sure to impress. 600 North Tyler St. in Little Rock. 501-352-3549.

District Fare is the Republic of quality meats and eats. Dine in or take out. They offer sandwiches, house made charcuterie, meats, cheeses and specialty market items not typically found in the area. 2807 Kavanaugh Blvd. in Little Rock. 501-671-6328

Lakewood Fish & Seafood Lounge is a sports bar and seafood joint. You can find sops, salads, oysters, catfish, shrimp, crab, and even an alligator basket. Stop by to check out the daily fish, too! 4801 North Hills Blvd. in North Little Rock in the Lakewood House. 501-758-4299

Doe's Eat Place features Little Rock's favorite steaks, hot tamales with chili, succulent broiled shrimp, tasty grilled salmon, mouth watering hamburgers and more. It is filled with memorabilia that makes the experience what it is. 1023 W. Markham St. in Little Rock. 501-376-1195

Lagniappe @ 610 brings a taste of Louisiana to Downtown. Specials include Red Beans & Rice w/ Smoked Sausage, Chicken & Sausage Jambalaya, and a fish fry every Friday. Food cooked to order. Full service bar open 7 days a week. 610 Center St. in Little Rock. 501-374-4678

Southern Table is a boards, bites and bruschetta eatery specializing in seasonal small plates and a shared menu with world dining options. Proudly serving Southern Table produced cheeses and Raimondo Winery wines and products. 323 S. Cross St. in Little Rock. 501-379-9111.

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AFTER

Arkansas Crawl Space Improvements offers moisture treatments, repairs to damaged and mildewed insulation, vapor barriers, auto and power vent insulation removal, and sump pump installation. 12 years of experience. Call or text now for a FREE estimate. 501-291-8834

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South Main Creative puts an Urban twist on the traditional antique mall with authentic antiques, vintage items, local art and artisan-made goods. Our unique variety of art, craft, and DIY classes are always favorites! Tues-Sat 10-5:30, Sun 10-3. 1600 Main Street in Little Rock. 501-414-8713

Abby Road proudly sells locally-made glass, the latest in vaporizer technology, hand-made festival clothing and accessories, disc golf supplies, unique gifts, decor, and more! 1400 South University Ave. in Little Rock. 501614-6400

LJ’s Automotive Repair provides top-quality automotive services to Central Arkansas. Specializing in all auto repair, they offer everything from oil changes to general repair problems. A family owned business that fixes what others can’t. 8403 JFK in Sherwood. 501-392-6497

E & B Customs specializes in oversized tires and wheels for any vehicle. They also offer HID Headlights, Powder Coating & Paint. Stop by today and learn how to customize your vehicle! 3623 John F Kennedy Blvd. in North Little Rock. 501-758-0088

Beauty's A Breeze wants each woman that comes through their doors to feel like they have someone to count on with their closet needs. They have a wide variety of clothing, shoes, accessories, makeup, & more all under $40! 918 W. Main Street Suite 3 in Cabot. 501-232-1454.

Central AR Baton Twirling is Janice Jackson Seamand's newest studio that focuses on the instruction of baton twirling to students from beginners to advanced twirlers. Classes offered include group twirling, twirling dance, and private twirling. 1089 Front St. in Conway. 501-733-1131

Stifft Station Gifts is a quirky gift shop and place to play in a really old building located in the Historic Stifft Station District. Offering a variety of locally made goodies, homemade products and more. 3009 West Markham St. in Little Rock. 501-725-0209

My Furniture Warehouse is Arkansas's original & leading mattress warehouse. We sell name brand mattresses and furniture direct from factory at huge savings. Come visit for the best quality at the best prices in Arkansas. 16220 Alexander Rd. in Alexander. 501-455-0501

Legacy Jewelers offers a wide variety of unique jewelry pieces for every budget as well as custom design, jewelry and watch repair, battery replacement, engraving and strap adjustment..Over 40 years of experience. 1604 S. Pine St. Ste B in Cabot. 501-941-3003

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BE A LOCALIST. By Kaitlin Schmidt

Featured local: Mark Abernathy

Written & Photographed by Richard Ledbetter

Since 1971, Mark Abernathy has been bringing great food and renowned musicians to the Arkansas’ capital city. In multiple venues beginning with TGI Friday’s on Markham to Juanita’s Cantina, Blue Mesa, Bene Vita, Loca Luna and Red Door, Abernathy has transcended the ordinary with world-class fare and entertainment. Little Rock’s growing reputation as a foodie destination has roots in Abernathy’s many dining establishments. He recently sat down with Local to discuss his long and storied career as chef and music promoter. Asked where his love of cooking came from and when it began, Abernathy said, “I grew up with a family full of great Southern women cooks, and my father was a good cook, too. Restaurants were for special occasions back then, and except for the occasional Dairy Queen there weren’t really any fast food joints. Everybody had family dinners. When I graduated from Fayetteville in the early ‘70s, a hippie with bad habits, I didn’t want to be a banker, so I started as a manager with Friday’s and fell in love with the restaurant business. It was the third one in the country and turned out a huge success. “Beginning in ’73, I spent 13 years in San Antonio and Mexico opening and managing restaurants.” During that period, he started The Design Group to consult on restaurants in Texas and Mexico. “When I came home to 12

visit, I realized the only Mexicana style options were Browning’s, Mexico Chiquita and Casa Bonita,” Abernathy said. “There was a real need for authentic Tex-Mex and Sonoran style CalMex dining. Madison Guarantee owned a lot of South Main property, and they were happy to support our development efforts. The lot that became Juanita’s was four concrete walls with a dirt floor and no utilities. At the time, I-630 ended at Woodrow Street. I was told I was making a huge mistake putting a restaurant in that location. But when the expressway opened 3 months before us, we had a wait for the first two years. We made our own flour tortillas and fried our own chips that no one was doing here then and served the first fajitas in Arkansas. “Growing up in Little Rock, eating fish meant bass, crappie, catfish or frozen fish sticks. With the advent of overnight airfreight, we helped introduce fresh saltwater dining to the city. In 1986 there were no Latinos I could find to add cultural flavor to our atmosphere. I sold my interest in Juanita’s ten years later because there were so many Mexican restaurants by then. That’s how much things have change in thirty-one years.” Asked about his love and promotion of live music, he said, “I’ve been in a band since age 13. I’m a musician and it’s in my

DNA. I was never all that great, but the afterparty was worth the effort. I surrounded myself with players who were all better than me, so it was easy to sound good. “I had the Bijou in San Antonio in the late 70s. We’d get the cream of the crop out of Austin. We developed a strong reputation as a small, intimate venue. It was a listening room with no talking during a show. I got to hang out with really talented, creative musicians on a personal level. That’s where I first got involved with promoting. “When I came back and opened Juanita’s, I was missing being in a band, so we formed the Torpedoes with some of the Greasy Greens. We began playing in the back of the bar on Tuesdays and Thursdays. It became clear there was a hole in the market with no real place to hear good, live music. We closed our neighboring gift shop and converted the space to a stage area. We spent a lot of money putting in state-of-theart stage lighting and a sound system with a 25-channel board. That made a big difference in who we could draw in to perform. That and our outstanding menu are what allowed us to get $5,000-a-night bands for $1,500. Little Rock is really at the crossroads of America in many ways, so that put us smack in the middle of the touring circuit. Record companies would rather have their talent out playing and promoting records than sitting in a motel room. They could play Juanita’s en route to larger markets, sell some records and pick up travel money. “The incredible artists that came through there are legendary. The Tuesday Night Blues Jam was the longest running Blues jam in the nation. I regret we didn’t have sound and camera running for every show. “Our criteria was if we really believed in a band, we didn’t mind losing money one or two times because they would eventually build a following. We’d go out on a limb losing money because we were building the integrity of the program. One of my few regrets is we had the opportunity to book Miles Davis following his long selfimposed exile, but we passed with the intent of catching him on the return trip. He died before that could happen. “We had in our artist


contract they couldn’t exceed a certain decibel level. We told them it was a city ordinance,” Abernathy added with a sheepish grin. “It let our sound engineer control the quality to a great degree. I would never be in a band that didn’t have someone to handle our sound. I was always surprised at the number of bands that traveled without a competent soundman. Abernathy’s cooking segment appeared on Good Morning Arkansas every Thursday for a dozen years, and he was introduced at the 2017 Atlanta Food and Wine Festival as “one of the Godfathers of the Southern Food scene.” Local asked Abernathy how and where his broader public persona started? “I’ve had the privilege to cook with some of the best chefs in the business. Timing has a lot to do with fate. The world press came to Little Rock when Clinton was elected, and I got invited to many high profile events. I was invited to cook with and learn from some of the greats. I’ve shared the stage with Rachel Ray and Julia Childs among others. Julia was literally larger than life. She was a bit older when I got to cook with her and she was the nicest, most warm, funny and fun person you could imagine. American food up to Julia was strictly regional. She introduced diners and cooks to European cuisine.” Asked from what and where Little Rock’s foodie reputation derived, he said, ”I think people in the South have a natural talent for using our regional ingredients to their fullest. We’ve taken our Southern food heritage with great old recipes and tweaked them. We have a bounty of great fresh, raw ingredients. Chain restaurants have never been farm to table. We were one of the first to seek out local growers and buy their ‘ugly’ produce. We were going to chop it up anyway, so if it wasn’t quite as pretty as what you see in the store, that was fine. It just made good sense. It was a win, win, win.” When asked about his plans for the future, Abernathy said, “I still love what I’m doing. Like Willie said, ‘I play music and a little golf. Why should I retire?’ I hope to continue to mentor and help promote the Arkansas food scene. Culinary tourism is so important. We can hang with anybody because we have so many really talented young chefs that I’m very proud of.” Abernathy’s current dining establishments are Loca Luna, located at 3519 Old Cantrell Rd., and Red Door, immediately next door.

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Attention members & guests

Attention members & guests

Open daily at 3pm Open 7 Days a Week 3PM to 5AM

NOVEMBER

Live Music, Billiards, Food, & Fun on Tap. Open Daily 11am-2am

3rd

NOVEMBER Jeff Coleman and the Feeders

4th 10th

American Lions

11th

Hoodoo Blues Revue

17th

Tone Katz

18th

Nerd Eye Blind

24th 25th

Big Shane Thornton

1st

Strange Brue

TBA

DECEMBER Joey Fanstar

2nd

Orange Star High

8th

Akeem Kemp 3

9th

Sloppy Kiss

15th

Markus Pearson Band

16th

Jason Kinney Band

Plus MUCH more! Check out the website for the full band schedule. Home of the 1/2 lb Midtown Burger!

Live music Fri. & Sat. nights

NOVEMBER

3rd

Jamie Lou and the Hullabaloo w/ Adam Faucett

4th

Mountain Sprout

10th

DeFrance

17th

Dikki Du and the Zydeco Krewe Clusterpluck

11th

TCSMIDTOWN.COM

14

4th 10th

Buh Jones

11th

DeFrance

17th

Black River Pearl

18th

Psydelic Velocity

24th 25th

Big Damn Horns

American Lions

Ed Bowman

DECEMBER BuH Jones

18th Akeem Kemp Band

8th

Black River Pearl

9th

Melodie Rookier

24th Noruz 25th Groovement

15th

Queen Anne’s Revenge

22nd

Vintage Pistol

30th Ian Moore Holiday Tour

23rd

TBA

29th

TBA

30th

DeFrance

31st

NYE Blowout w/ Ed Bowman

w/ Cherry Red

DECEMBER

4th

Black River Pearl

13th Big Silver 14th CosmOcean 20th Aaron Kamm and the One Drops

25th Weakness for Blondes

26th NYE Party w/ The Mike

1611 EAST OAK ST. Conway , AR 72032

Whiskey Rondevous

2nd

26th FreeWorld CD Release For the complete schedule, check out:

3rd

Dillon Band

full schedule & food menu: www.fourquarterbar.com

415 Main St. N. Little Rock, AR

Trivia on Tuesdays @ 6PM Live Music on Fridays & Saturdays Karaoke on Sundays @ 7PM 1316 MAIN ST•LITTLE ROCK, AR Must be 21 to enter


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Featured Meant to Share

LITTLE ROCK est.

Southern Table Blends Fine Food and Friendly Atmosphere

Full Kitchen & Bar Tues - Sat Open until 5am

- Adam Cherepski “Sedersi e mangiare” was a phrase that Margie Raimondo heard a lot growing up. It means, “sit and eat.” This is definitely her mantra at Southern Table, a fresh, new eatery in Little Rock. In fact, included in the logo are the words “meant to share.” Raimondo comes from a Sicilian family where gatherings of family and friends around a common table are second nature. She is insistent upon this being the atmosphere at her restaurant. She wants diners to not only share in the food, but more importantly to share in the experience. Raimondo’s creativity and excitement are reflected in the carefully crafted menu. It is not a large menu, but what is there is well thought out and exquisitely prepared. Everything on the menu has an Italian flair. All of the produce is locally grown on nearby farms, and the meats are imported from Europe. While there are staple items represented on the menu, Raimondo has a very dynamic approach to them. That is what she loves most about what she does; she gets to create whatever she wants whenever she wants, and this is usually driven by availability of the freshest high-quality ingredients. She often tells her suppliers to bring whatever looks good, and she will figure out what to do with it.

Almost everything is made in-house, and that is not an exaggeration. From the gelato to the preserves, the shortbread to the pita, and even the mustards and the spices are all

2015

LOCAL UNION

made in-house. Raimondo said she developed her culinary talents while living on farms in Italy and Spain for some time and working in

Serving Lunch Mon - Fri 11am-2pm

Available for private parties

501-660-4200 1501 N. University Ave. Little Rock, AR (1st Floor of the prospect building)

thelocalunion.com restaurants all the while. Nothing on the Southern Table menu is particularly heavy. The bruschetta offerings have veggie, seafood and protein options, the most popular being the Duck and Fig, but this writer especially adored the Caponata. The Snack Bites section of the menu boasts Cheese Bread Puffs–a perfect savory pastry complemented by homemade apple butter. On the Bites portion of the menu, the Wedge Salad with Pancetta is a favorite, but do not disregard the other items, especially the soups, and don’t leave without sampling something from the Sweet Bites menu. The portions are hearty enough for a meal, but as Raimondo’s mantra states, it’s all “meant to share.” For the holiday season, Southern Table is a great option for large gatherings. The restaurant can fit up to 100 guests, so the more the merrier. The Tuscan setup is sure to be a crowd favorite and a party that guests will remember. Raimondo referenced the table as the canvas that brings people together, which makes the name she has chosen for her restaurant very apropos. Southern Table is located at 323 Cross Street in downtown Little Rock and open Monday through Thursday from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Friday and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Find the restaurant on Facebook and at southerntablefoods.com.

N

!

PEN O W O

OPEN 7 DAYS A WEEK!

501-372-BREW (2739) 315 Main St., Little Rock, AR

BREWSKISPUBANDGRUB.COM 15


Enhancing a Classic - Adam Cherepski | Photography by Masters Media Productions There are five to ten coffee shops in the downtown Little Rock and North Little Rock area. More than half of those have popped up in the last year or so. In fact, for a city that, at one point, was struggling for a coffee spot that does not have a mermaid on the logo, we have come a long way. You can go to almost any one of these locations and receive a good if not great cup of coffee. You can get a pastry or 16

some other baked good. You may even be able to stop in later in the day and grab something for lunch. For most, a coffee shop is a coffee shop is a coffee shop. What sets them apart? What makes a person say, “That’s my coffee shop”? That is exactly what I asked Michael Hickmon, the owner, and Zarah Williams, the manager, of Mugs Café in Argenta.

A Good Foundation The quality of the goods that Mugs produces is very important to everyone who is involved in the business. They want to make sure that you have the best possible coffee, the best breakfast and the best lunch that they can provide, but what they really want to concentrate on more than anything else are the relationships they forge along the way. Both Hickmon and Williams know the importance of a familial working environment. This is evident based on the fact that most of the employees have been there for years—a rarity in the café business. The connections among the staff are likened to brothers and sisters working together. Each person treats the other as family, and it is this respect and care that carries over to the customer. When the employees get along as well as they do at Mugs, it is something that is felt rather than seen. Another relationship that has been established at Mugs is the exclusive partnership with Onyx Coffee from the northwest corner of our state. Only Onyx coffee is served at Mugs. If you are not familiar with Onyx and the quality of coffee they purvey, I implore you to look into their awards and accolades. Williams insisted on being trained by the Onyx team so she could learn the proper process and ensure consistency. It is this collaboration that speaks to the resolve of quality, local products for Mugs Café. A rapport that has also been formed is the one with Flyway Brewing, also in Argenta. This currently presents itself in the form of Flyway’s Coffeecake Stout. These behind-the-scenes business associations are merely the foundation for the relationship that is most important, the relationship with the customer. Williams, along with the staff, pride themselves on knowing a majority of the people who come into the café. They know their names, their orders and most likely a little bit more than that. This is how they best take care of the people who take care of them. They want people to be proud to say, “That’s my coffee shop.” Aside from the relationships, there is far more that separates Mugs from other coffee shops. For one, parking. There is plenty of it, and it is all free. This may seem trivial, but from someone who has visited almost every coffee shop in the downtown area, this is huge. Knowing that you will not be driving in circles to find a spot or sifting through compartments in your car scavenging for loose change for meters provides peace of mind—a good place to start. The physical space itself is unique in that it is very open with plenty of seating. The environment is perfect for the student looking to study, the reader who just wants a minute


to himself, the group of friends that wants to hang out and the co-workers who simply need to get out of the office for a while. The music that permeates the room is pleasantly subdued, just enough to enjoy but not near the point of distraction.

How We Got Here Mugs Café has been a consistent presence in the downtown scene since July of 2013, but not many people know that October of last year, the business changed ownership. Hickmon, a customer-turned-owner, knew that he wanted to buy the place the first time he set foot inside. He actually looked at his wife as they were

walking out on that fateful day, and jokingly said, “I’m gonna buy that place one day,” and lo and behold, he did. Since he purchased Mugs last year, he has steadily been improving quality, efficiency and the overall experience. When I asked about the changes he has made and what he plans to do, he was quick to correct me and state that what they are doing are enhancements, and not changes. What he bought was working, but neither he nor Williams are content with the status quo. They want to stay true to the identity of Mugs, but a few tweaks here and there are necessary so as to not sink into the depths of contentment. This change in ownership coming as a surprise is intentional. Hickmon likes to remain behind the scenes because he knows it is the employees who make the experience. He wants to keep the following Mugs has established while reaching out to others and increasing this base, and he has done just that. Where Do We Go From Here? Enhancements, as Hickmon and Williams refer to them, have been happening, and more are on the way. First, to refresh the look of Mugs, a new logo is at the forefront. This new branding provides a cleaner, crisper look for the establishment. This updated look is on the new website, the iOS app and new apparel and products such as shirts, hats, mugs (of course), etc. Speaking of the app, you can now place your order, get directions, leave reviews and enroll in the loyalty program, among other tasks, all from your iPhone–another testament to the commitment to efficiency and the customer. The menu will also receive some attention. This is not to say that the existing menu will lose anything, but new items will be added to

ON THE complement the current offerings. The best part C OV E R about this concept is that all of the new items are customer-driven, a novel idea that needs to be utilized more in the restaurant industry. Do not worry, the breakfast tacos, biscuits and gravy, burgers, French Dip and all of the other alreadystellar items are not going anywhere, there will only be more tough decisions to make. Extended hours are also in the works. Coming in 2018, evening hours will be added to give you ample opportunity to experience what Mugs has to offer. With these extended evening hours, look for live entertainment such as music and maybe even a little bit of stand-up comedy thanks to another relationship, the one with The Joint down the street. They are also planning on offering beer and wine once the hours change. The team at Mugs is doing things right; they are making sure every enhancement makes sense, and they are employing a thorough strategy for each one. This methodical approach will only ensure their further successes, and it will make you proud to say, “That’s my coffee shop.”

Mugs Café is located at 515 Main Street in Downtown North Little Rock. Stop in for a visit to see Williams and the crew. Check them out online at mugscafe.org and on Facebook and Instagram.

17


Exercise YOUR RIGHT TO TRY OUR CLUB FOR FREE .

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1608 South Main St. · Little Rock, AR

Mon - Sat 5pm - 10pm

www.sonnywilliamssteakroom.com 500 President Clinton Ave. Little Rock, AR • 501-324-2999 18


Every Day Is Wine Day!

It’s the holiday season–one of the most exciting, memorable, and fun times of the year. It’s also the busiest season for many mothers and fathers, who are filled to the brim with holiday events, school functions, gift-shopping and wrapping, baking, and cooking. So, it’s no wonder that at the end of our busy days, the last thing on our to-do list is to go grocery shopping and cook dinner on a boring old Tuesday night. But, the truth is, our family still expects to eat dinner every boring old Tuesday night. So, how do we balance all of the chaos that we have going on over the holidays with the never relenting expectation of providing dinner to our family?

Luckily for you, central Arkansas has someone that can make your life easier during, and not during, the holidays. The Clean Eatery provides a fully prepared, cooked and packaged meal for any diet and delivers it straight to your door. Take the night off and wrap those Christmas presents without having to worry about cooking a healthy (or unhealthy) family meal or taking trips to the dreaded grocery store amidst the holiday grocery traffic. Another downside to eating during the holidays is that we all know how difficult it is to stay on track while the scent of decadent pecan pies, brittle, other sweet treats and rich meals fill the house. If this sounds like you, it’s time to come up with a strategy ahead of time. So what can be done? How is it possible to stay on track during this time of year without pulling out

your hair and breaking the bank? Pick a plan that suits your needs and try a new menu every week delivered straight to your home. Aside from your own personal and household meal planning needs, this is also the season of office parties, holiday shindigs and various other festive celebrations. Have a Pinterest idea you want to come to life? The Clean Eatery offers catering for any event and provides your party with delicious, healthy food. Want to stand out even more? The food truck is available to come to your events as well! Now the hard part… what to get that special family member who is impossible to shop for or the boss you are desperately trying to impress for Christmas this year? Give the gift of great, fresh food and good health with a Clean Eatery gift certificate. Buy your loved ones a gift they can really take advantage of this upcoming year. The Clean Eatery offers only the freshest organic foods and maintains five-star quality ratings. The biggest gap in fitness, weight loss/ gain and athletics are the foods we eat. When trying to stay on track, whether it is during the holidays or not, it's nice to have somewhere to go that supports your goals and satisfies your taste buds.

To learn more about the meal plans, catering, the food truck and gift cards, check out :

www.cleaneaterylr.com

Great craft beer selection and growler bar! 501 . 8 34 . 2 1 3 4 Intersection of Kiehl Ave. & Hwy 107

107liquor.com

A taste of Louisiana Daily Specials Mon-Fri

#1 Brunch on Yelp w/ $12 Mimosa buckets, $4 Bloody Marys & the famous Pulled Pork Scramble

Full Service Bar open 7 days a week

501.374.4678 610 Center St., Little Rock, AR 19


FEATURED RECIPE

ZANEROBE FRENCH CONNECTION CULTURE EXCLUSIVES BARNEY COOLS CRYSP DENIM VITALY AG JEANS RVCA HIPPYTREE BRIXTON

MANGO PINEAPPLE

SALSA

INGREDIENTS:

Ω 1 cup fresh mango (micro diced) Ω 1 cup fresh pineapple (micro diced) Ω 6 green onions (finely sliced) Ω 1 tablespoon of Adobo sauce or pureed chipotles Ω 1 red bell pepper (micro diced) Ω 1/2 teaspoon salt Ω 1 tablespoon lime juice Ω 1/2 cup chopped cilantro After cutting all fruits and veggies to the proper size, toss together and let sit for 30 minutes or refrigerate overnight. Serve with Pulled Pork on Old Mill Bread's Blue Ribbon Jalapeno Cornbread. Duh!

PROVISIONS FOR THE CULTURED GENTLEMAN

11220 N. RODNEY PARHAM RD. SUITE 3 LITTLE ROCK 72212

5 0 1 . 2 4 6 . 5 4 6 6

Personal Local Service... It’s what I do.

(501) 907-5747 Recipe brought to you by Amanda Ivy, Executive Chef/ Partner at Old Mill Bread. 12111 Markham Street in Little Rock. (501)228-4677

20

April Pollard

april.pollard@edwardjones.com 11601 Pleasant Ridge Rd. Ste 303 Little Rock, AR 72212


5 REASONS TO BUY LOCAL THIS HOLIDAY SEASON This holiday season, we are looking at how social minded holiday shopping can make a positive impact on communities. Of course, we still want to be able to give gifts to our friends and loved ones – but wouldn’t it be nice to give a socially responsible gift by considering where the gift comes from? By making a conscious decision to patronize small businesses you can help to preserve local culture while also making a difference in the economy. For that reason, we have created a list of 5 reasons to patronize small businesses for this year’s holiday shopping:

1. Improve your local economy Chances are that the small businesses you are visiting are owned by someone who lives in your community. This means that the money you spend locally will get filtered back in your local

economy. And even if you are buying online, you are still creating a ripple effect through another community.

success of his or her business, which means they are experts on the product that they create and sell.

2. Create Jobs Locally owned businesses create more jobs locally and, in some sectors, provide better wages and benefits than chains do.

5. Original, Handmade Gifts If you like to give original, handmade gifts, you can’t beat shopping at a locally owned business. Small businesses are commonly thought of as trend setters – paving the way for their larger scale counterparts with an unbridled imagination and vision. Also, small businesses usually do not have to scale their product for a mass market, which ensures high craftsmanship and originality.

3. Enrich your Community Nobody wants to live in a neighborhood that lacks a small business culture. While franchises and national chain stores play a role in the national economy, we all know that small businesses provide an undeniable vibrancy and sentiment vital to community life. Many people believe that small businesses are not just the economic but also the social heartbeat of America. 4. Personalized Experience Shopping at small local businesses always offers a personal and sincere customer-owner interaction, impossible to replicate with largescale vendors. Small business shop owners are interested in their clients, know their wants and needs, and are willing to give their customer personal attention to answer questions about their products. Furthermore, a small business owner is passionately and inevitably linked to the

Come out for Small Business Saturday on Nov. 2th for special holiday shopping deals!

Arline’s

Proudly serving you since 1976

Individuality in Skin Care

Kubota ZD1211-60

Experience the power of Kubota!

Treat your mom to something special this Mother’s Day! · Facials & Body Wraps · Infrared Therapy · Waxing & Pedicures · Electro Therapy · Chemical Peels · Microdermabrasion Mon-Fri: 8 am-6 pm (Closed Wed.)

501.219.2080

www.fisertractor.com ®

Fiser Tractor has the equipment to get 2017 started off right! Sales | Service | Parts | Rental 24218 I-30 Bryant, AR · 501-847-9043

4137 JFK Blvd. North Little Rock, AR 21


Customs

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4812 JFK Blvd. North Little Rock, AR (501) 246-3547

Every piece of Bang-Up Betty jewelry is stamped letter by letter, assembled and polished by hand in Little Rock. www.bangupbetty.com

S MA

MERRY HRISTMAS Gourmet popcorn store with nostalgic candies, sodas and more!

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Oversized Tire and Wheel specialists. HID Headlights, Powder Coating & Paint

N

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3623 JFK Blvd. North Little Rock, AR (501) 758-0088


Handcrafted soap & bath luxuries made on Historic Bathhouse Row. 366 Central Ave Hot Springs 501.52507627 www.bathhousesoap.com

DOWNTOWN 501- 353-1045 323 Center St Little Rock, AR

B R AY G O U R M E T. C O M Mon-Thurs 7:30am - 3pm Friday 7:30am - 2pm

CARTI 501-660-7699 8901 CARTI WAY Little Rock, AR

BREAKFAST

7:30am - 9:30 am

LUNCH

10:30am - close

• Cars, Trucks and Exotics • Huge inventory! • Many vehicles other dealerships can’t get their hands on Quality products, apparel, accessories, home décor, cleaning and personal care products, seasonal gifts, foods and hand crafted creations by local artisans. The tea bar is also now open! 1423 Main St. Little Rock, AR 72202 (501) 374-1111 www.thegreencornerstore.com

• Financing is available

281 Newman Dr North Little Rock

501.309.9970

23


Me & McGee Market "It's the Experience." - Logan Duvall Creating a welcoming, positive environment is the core of Me & McGee. We are not a big operation. Very far from it, in all reality, but that’s the way we want it. Personal relationships, one-on-one interactions and smiles slow down time and contribute to the relaxing feeling visitors often experience.

We are experiencing exciting times due to special partnerships. The growth attributed to the businesses that have supported us is phenomenal. We pride ourselves on supporting local entrepreneurs and strive to assist in their success. Two such partners are The Farm at Barefoot Bend and Honey Pie. Me & McGee Market carries the specialty

meats of The Farm at Barefoot Bend and will remain open year-round. Not only is the beef 100% grass-fed, but the cattle drink natural spring water from the foothills of the Ouachita Mountains. We believe this combination produces some of the purest meat available. The Forested Pork is just what the name implies. The hogs get to live running up and down forested hills, rooting in brush and enjoying life, also drinking fresh spring water. The pork tastes clean and flavorful. One of the many reasons we are so supportive is simply how Damon Helton treats the animals. He gives the animals a great life and focuses on as stress-free as possible. To him, it's not only about the end result of selling meat, but also connecting to food, quality of life and the outdoors. Honey Pie's owner Sharon Woodson, a dear friend, brought us some pies to bake, and one thing led to another. We are now offering frozen southern style pies and crusts. Apple, Peach, Fudge and Pecan have been very well received in addition to Chicken Pot Pies. The "take and bake" concept is efficient and simple. When coupled with amazing products from a great

local business, the future looks bright for our partnership with Honey Pies. The winter season for the Me and McGee crew will consist of holiday gift baskets. Our gift baskets are made up of local honey, jams, jellies and seasonings as well as our pecans, breads, brittle, toffee and other Me and McGee signatures. We are pleased to announce we are creating a website to offer online sales. We want to know our guests and strive to remember names. Our hope is to make everyone feel welcome and enjoy the smiles as people leave. Facebook is our primary means of interaction. To keep informed on what is going on, like and follow Me & McGee Market. The winter schedule is Thursday and Friday 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Saturday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Me and McGee Market is located at 10409 Hwy 70 in North Little Rock

JONES BROS. P Since 1870 Bennett’s Military Supplies has been Arkansas’ oldest and largest store of its kind.

OL TABLES

Family owned and operated since 1924. Wide Selection of High-Quality Pool Tables and Accessories Shuffleboards

Wide Variety of Games We specialize in: · Genuine Military Items · Boots Clothing · Packs & Gear & Airsoft Products

608 Main Street · Little Rock 24

501-372-2944

Furniture

Moving & Repair

501-372-0168 309 W Broadway St. N. Little Rock, AR · www.jonesbrospooltables.com


Why is

Local

Shopping

?

Important to You

JIMMY YOUNG

General Manager at Sonny Williams Steak Room

When you buy from an independent, locally-owned business, more of your money is used to make purchases from other local businesses, service providers, and farms — continuing to strengthen the economic base of the community. Also, non-profit organizations receive on average 250% more support from smaller business owners than they do from large businesses. My biggest pro with buying local is Local businesses are owned by people who live in this community, are less likely to leave, and are more invested in the community’s future.

Your own personal chef! Our meals include: The Highest Quality Ingredients, No added Junk, Paleo & Primal Options, Gluten Free, Grain Free, 100% Grass-Fed & Pastured Meats.

901.488.1110 info@cravefuel.com

Shopping Local is important because not only are you investing in a community, but you’re investing in someone’s dream. When you shop small, you are validating someone’s passions, talents, and heart behind a service and that kind of intentionality drives genuine relationships that you can’t find anywhere else.

www.cravefuel.com

ZARAH WILLIAMS General Manager at Mugs Cafe

COREY TULLIER

Owner / Operator at Lagniappe @ 610

As a new business owner, it is very important to me to support local businesses due to my pride in the community. It would be foolish for me to expect residents of central Arkansas to support my restaurant if I don’t reciprocate by procuring the items necessary to my business’ daily operations from local vendors. While shopping online may be easier, cheaper and more convenient, I find building relationships with my preferred vendors and the people I come into contact with daily much more satisfying than my Amazon app remembering my username and password.

When you buy from a local family owned business, you're not helping a CEO buy a third holiday home. You are helping a little girl get dance lessons, a little boy get his team uniform, and a mother and father put food on the table. Thank you for shopping local.

We Believe the quality of our Health determines the quality of our life & nothing is more important than that!

4150 Heritage Drive North Little Rock, AR

CrossFitAlign@gmail.com

901.237.4644 www.alignlr.com

COURTNEY LEE Manager at E&B Customs

REDEEM FOR 1 FREE WEEK! 25


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Pants

Hem, hem with cuff, taper legs, take in or let out waist, mend holes, fix zippers, etc.

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Good Dog

Therapy Pets Provide an Alternative Method of Emotional Support - April Lane

Service animal programs can be so important to people struggling physically or emotionally. Support animals can take the pressure off the everyday tasks of living and working and be an uplifting companion. For Stacey Reynolds and family, a day came in which they needed some extra support, and it came by way of Zeppelin’s nuzzling nose. “Zeppelin came into our lives at a critical time,” Reynolds said. “I had wanted to have a therapy dog or emotional support dog for the studio and to go with me into my facilities that I work in during the day. I had already owned a standard poodle in my former life, so I knew the breed well and had convinced my husband that's the breed I would want if ever we decided to get a pet.” Reynolds, owner of Blue Yoga Nyla yoga studio in North Little Rock, had gotten a concussion last spring and ended up with symptoms of post concussion syndrome. Struggling when no one really knew it and battling depression and anxiety felt like an uphill battle for Reynolds. Strong and determined, she took the steps necessary to meet the challenge she had been given. “On Easter, [my husband] Joe and I were visiting family, and I was walking around with tears in my eyes that day and a family friend mentioned her dog and I broke,” she said. “I talked to my husband later that day about my need for a dog... I had always had a pet and at that point I desperately needed something to help me self soothe.” After about six weeks of searching for the right dog to take to the yoga studio and other facilities, Reynolds found Zeppelin. “One Wednesday night, when once again we weren't having any luck, I closed my computer and basically gave up,” she said. “The next day, a friend of mine who I hadn't talked to in months texted me and said, ‘Are you by chance looking for a poodle?’ It was divine. She had found a dog in Austin, Texas, on Facebook. She doesn't even own a poodle but felt that she was supposed to tell me. I went to the Facebook tag

and read his bio and called immediately, and the owner told me his story. She told me that they already had 500 hits on the dog from all over the country, and while we were speaking on the phone, she was steadily getting calls. There was a bit of a story about him involving his therapy dog training. He was too low gear for service, so the trainers switched gears to therapy/ emotional support. I like to say he's a ‘comfort canine.’” Reynolds said people walk into the studio at Blue Yoga Nyla and go straight to Zeppelin. One client who recently lost her son walked in and all she said was, "where is he,” meaning Zeppelin. She walked straight to him, buried her head in his coat and sobbed. “Zeppelin holds so many places in our hearts,” Reynolds said. “He has absolutely been my saving grace. He is such a grounding force for me, even if I hadn't been dealing with the head injury. The head injury on top of the difficult work I do with people carrying their own heaviness, I couldn't do it without him. He's goofy, deeply personal, loyal and gentle. My husband ended up loving him as much as I do. It was all just a divine ending to the story. His months of training at a 501c3 in Texas prepared him for what we were going to need.” More than ever, therapists are beginning to really study and see the benefits that animals can have on trauma and depression along with a plethora of mental health issues that affect a large percentage of the public. For people who struggle, a service animal can be a much-needed companion to stabilize their environment and give companionship that supports therapy. Service animals also provide an avenue that is a bit more self-supportive than traditional therapy. If you believe you may benefit from the aide of a service or therapy animal, take some time to do research. Finding the right animal that suits your needs and environment is essential. It is highly recommended to also register your dog if you wish to utilize it as a

Stacey Reynolds and Zeppelin

service dog; this can easily be done and will enable you to take your animal with you when traveling. To register a dog, visit usdogregistry.org.

Common Types of Service Dogs: Severe Allergy Alert Dogs Autism Assistance Dogs Brace/Mobility Support Dogs Diabetic Alert Dogs Hearing Dogs Medical Alert Dogs Medical Assistant Dogs Psychiatric Service Dogs Seizure Response Dogs Visual Assistance Dogs Wheelchair Assistance Dogs

27


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E

veryone’s story is unique, and this is indeed the case with Darren Collins. Collins is a local hip-hop artist who goes by the moniker The Ridah G.O.D., and he has a story to tell. The content of his story is one that has been heard from other individuals who have been met with similar trials and tribulations, but it is what Collins does with these experiences that truly sets him apart. He was born and raised in Little Rock and grew up in the Ive’s Walk Housing Project. He has witnessed his share of violence, drugs and poverty, among other dire situations Collins uses his music as a platform—a pulpit, if you will. He chooses to take these experiences and send a message filled with hope and light rather than doom. Often in hip-hop, this lifestyle and culture are glorified. Artists build up what they have been through as if it is something to be sought after instead of something that can be seen as heuristic. Material possessions are often at the forefront of the lyrics, and Collins sees that as nothing more than foolishness.

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among others. It is these artists from whom he draws inspiration for his sound. He cites this introduction to this culture as a life-changing event. He began his pursuit of music in the same vain as many other aspiring artists. He rapped about his upbringing and cast these experiences in a positive light when, in fact, later he realized that these were his darker times. Later in life, he had what he aptly described as an epiphany. He decided it was time for his story, and thus his music, to mean something more. Without being said outright, it was obvious that gangs played a part in his youth. His time of adolescence was around the same time that Little Rock was going through what can only be described as a rough time. It was the time of “Bangin’ in Little Rock,” the HBO documentary that looked at the gang culture in our small southern city. Collins personified this time by stating that Little Rock was wearing a jacket of despair, and it has taken years to shed that jacket. Currently, he says that it feels like we have one arm back in the sleeve ready to wear it again. He wants his music and his message to shine a light on a better path. Collins is a man who loves his city, and he uses his music to build it up. His upcoming single is titled “Rock Town,” and serves as a tribute to the city that made him who he is and features fellow Little Rock native ​and ​recording artist, NeX2C. Find the album, “Street Preacher on Reverbnation.com and follow him on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Facebook @ TheRidahGodOfficial theridahgod.bandcamp.com instagram.com/theridahgod soundcloud.com/theridahgod twitter.com/theridahgod

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Collins fell in love with hip-hop in his youth when he had the opportunity to see such acts as LL Cool J, Kool Moe Dee and Public Enemy,

- Adam Cherepski


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It’s the Holiday season! Fall weather brings transformation in not only just fall leaves, but for us as well. Do you find yourself a little nervous, anxious or hard to stay focused? Are your bones and joints feeling sore or achy? What about dry or irritated skin? These are symptoms that signal you might have a little “Vata” imbalance. That’s where a balanced diet, moisture and yoga practice can help balance the change of cooler weather.

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Yoga Science Ayurveda, which literally means “life science,” associates fall and winter with the term “Vata” which is one of the three Doshas. The Doshas are biological energies found throughout the human body and mind. They govern all physical and mental processes and provide every living being with an individual blueprint for health and fulfillment The nature of Vata is not only linked to the wind and air, but also to things that are cold, dry, rough, and brittle. All these things relate to the fall and winter seasons outside. Internally, Vata also relates to our nervous system, as well as the movement of joints, ears, skin, and the energy of the thoughts that move through our mind. If you’re experiencing any of the symptoms mentioned above, try a yoga practice that allows the body and mind to relax, meditation where you feel balance throughout the body and calm the mind. Twists help cleanse and release toxins from the body. Fall into Yoga: Try a yoga flow with these asanas, and some hot tea.

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Sun Salutations Warrior I Pose and Warrior II Pose Twists: Half Lord of Fish Pose; Revolved Triangle Pose Side Stretches: Gate Pose Backbends: Bow Pose, Bridge Pose, Camel Pose 29


Are You Being Served? - April Lane

T

he holidays are here, and the celebrations are drawing near. This means many things to many of us, but one industry really kicks things into high gear. The hospitality industry will be stepping it up even further to provide all of the best of the best to those of us who enjoy dining out to celebrate the triumphs of the past year and also to say goodbye to the pitfalls. I have always enjoyed being a foodie, and I love the experience of dining out. Working in the hospitality industry off and on from a young age of 14, I have experienced all of what the industry has to offer from all angles. All the way from small town pizza joints to some of Arkansas’ finest dining establishments, I have found myself looking at the industry many times with a bird’s eye view of what it really means to serve and be served. When I was a child, I remember going to restaurants when I traveled with my family, and I remember that the highs and lows of the experience often came from the marriage between the back-of-house staff and the frontof-house, with whom we most often formed a relationship. More times than not when I dine out, I look for a friendly greeting, a welcoming server and a tantalizing dish that leaves me with something new to talk about when I leave. I also have my spots where I order the same thing each time. However, when I really leave surprised and feeling good inside is when I see that the house is happy and working toward a common goal of providing a top-notch experience and having fun doing it. My opinion is that one good dining experience can change the course of a day, week and even a year. It can make a good day better, and on a really bad day it can be a saving grace. I recently had such a day, and I made my way into Southern Gourmasian, located at 219 W. Capital Ave. I needed a place to go seek some temporary relief, and I got just what I ordered. From the music selection to the dish to the friendly, prompt service, I was filled with satisfaction and able to continue my journey through my day very grateful for having been made to feel like I mattered. Service is defined as, “the action of helping or doing work for someone.” This is the cornerstone of the hospitality industry. It takes a maximum amount of effort to achieve, in many cases. The industry is not always easy to navigate once you are inside of it. There are many challenges, and in many cases providing that top-notch service each day can be very stressful. The stakes are always high to create 30

that experience everyone will rave about. The hope and prayer that no negative reviews will pop up, and then to begin again the next day ready to create it again and again. We all have experienced good and bad customer service in all facets of our life. We know what it looks like and how it makes us feel. What we often do not think about when we are in the moment, living and breathing through our lives, is the preparation that goes into those moments we have where we have been made to feel amazing. It takes a village to prepare the experience. There are so many interworking parts functioning all at once toward the common goal of getting every dish and every drink from inception to the table that no one man or woman could ever complete it all alone. Teamwork is the foundation of the hospitality industry. To look forward into the holidays in the hospitality industry can be like looking into a snow globe filled with a decorative scene just waiting to be shaken up. It will be gratifying, beautiful and also full of challenges. It will be organized chaos with a dash of laughter, topped with a tear or two. I paint that somewhat depressive picture to say this: there will be many holiday parties and outings that will pull us all together under the wing of the hospitality industry. The workers will be working longer and harder hours to provide us with our chosen desires. The streets will be busier, and the demands always higher. Let us remember to stop and take a moment to be grateful for all the work that happens behind the curtains, before we enter and after we leave. They often make it look flawless and effortless, but the sleeves always get rolled up. When it is game on, everyone in the house knows it, and it’s all about the performance. It is exhilarating, exhausting and expected.

When dining out, we often look to see if the establishment we are enjoying meets the bar, whatever that may be for us as individuals. There is a critic inside all of us, but at the end of the day, let us not forget that we as diners have a bar to meet as well. How will we be remembered? We can shine some much-needed support and kindness on our hospitality workers today and every day. We can show them how much we appreciate their devotion to us and our families. There is an endless list of noteworthy establishments throughout Arkansas, and I have had the pleasure of working and dining in many of them. I have worked alongside many exceptional chefs and had the pleasure of directing many staffs and working alongside some of the most talented hosts and servers. They are exceptional and highly valued in my eyes, and they always have their work cut out for them. So, this season my suggestion to all of us is to spread the love and care throughout the cities as best we know how. I can assure you, bringing in our families and friends to enjoy our favorite spots never goes unnoticed, and the kindness we share and acquire while there sets the stage for an even brighter new year for us all. I appreciate the owners, workers, distributors, friends and family of the hospitality industry very dearly for the services they impart yearround, and I wish you all a tremendous number of blessings this year and every other. Don’t forget to be kind to one another.

Lane has worked in the service industry off and on since age 14. Over nearly the last decade she also has worked in and managed some of the top notch restaurants in the city including Arthurs Prime Steakhouse, Oceans At Arthurs, Kemuri, and The Fold. She believes strongly in supporting those workers in the hospitality industry, and in the service they provide the community. “I always enjoyed providing families with an experience. Those of us who are veterans of the industry know it is often a challenging job, but at the end of the day we thoroughly enjoy being a part of people’s lives and celebrations.


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Profile for Local. Magazine

Local Magazine - November 2017  

Local Magazine - November 2017  

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