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Getting Hooked in the Ouachitas Kayaks & Anglers Find a Reel Paradise

Plus: Brian Martin Trees of Life Superior Bathhouse

Making It on the Green

One Stop Crop: Farm to Table Natural Springs, Wishing Wells and Fleeting Scenic Scenes Ou a c hit a H ighCo u ntr y .com 1


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Contents

What’s Inside

20 24

Getting Hooked in the Ouachitas

Kayaks & Anglers Find a Reel Paradise

Natural Springs, Wishing Wells & Fleeting Scenic Scenes

Highlights of Historic Highway Seven North

29 38

One Stop Crop: Farm to Table

Hot Springs Village Green Market at Grove Park Boasts a Splendid Spring Harvest

Making It on the Green

Golfers Who Mean Business

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ART

Creative Director Marisa Rodgers

COPY

Chief Writer Jim G. Miller Copy Editor Ciara Cerrato Contributing Writer Jeremy Mackey

P H OTO

Chief Photographer/Photo Editor Jeremy Rodgers

Departments New to the Ouachitas

Entertaining

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32

Rod & Gun Club

Bonding Over Common Interests on Arkansas Sporting Grounds

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Ouachita Sports Trail

From the Green and Everything in Between

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Fare

12

16

Superior Bathhouse

Springs into the Season with Fresh Spirits and New Brew

Brian Martin

A Mountain Voice Wanders: From the Ouachitas to the Ozarks and Back Again

Trees of Life

The Sculpted Mineral Forests of Penny Herring

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Farm to Table

Chef Angela Nardi Maps Out a Spring Journey for the Palate

O u ac h i ta Hi gh C ou nt r y

Spring Training

Looking Back at an Early Ouachita Moment from America’s Favorite Pastime

S A L ES

Sales Coordinator Kari Bars Ouachita High Country is a production of Destination Design Initiative, pending 501c3 in partnership with Hot Springs Village. For advertising opportunities: karibars@rendercreativegroup.com or call 501-620-4520 For editorial queries: Please write to: Render Creative Group attn: Ouachita High Country 801 Central Avenue, Suite 30 Hot Springs, AR 71901 or email info@rendercreativegroup.com

In Each Issue

7 18 46

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Jennifer Huett from House to Home Shares Her Party Must-Haves for Spring

Glance Back

Music & Arts

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It’s the Season

Contributing Photographers Corbet Deary Chris Sale Jim G. Miller

Letter from the Editors

Ouachita High Country Trailhead

Calendar of Events

What’s Happening This Spring

In Your Words

Tell Us Your Fondest Summer Memories for Next Issue

B E SO C I A L W I T H U S

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L e t t e r F r o m t h e E d i t o rS

Ouachita High Country Trailhead

Beginning at the earthy base of its foothills and stretching throughout the heart of the Natural State, the Ouachitas offer a unique perspective of not only its picturesque landscape, but also its people who are as multifaceted as the mountains themselves. They are diverse in their backgrounds and varied in their interests. Game and sports, arts and culture, and history and community are explored within the region’s upcropping hotbed of individuals, businesses, and organizations that offer the must-dos and musthaves of the season. The spring rouses the best that nature has to offer in the South, and Ouachita High Country is an invaluable looking glass for those interested in the richness of Ouachita culture this season. We are excited that regional groups and grassroots efforts such as the Ouachita Sports Trail may act as conveyors of the wilderness and sporting opportunities of Arkansas. Awakening with the season are our senses and curiosity, released like the scent of flowers in the spring air. The Ouachitas provide more than an abundance of talent and beauty, and Ouachita High Country aims to bring to light the region’s remarkable chefs, exceptional artists, and moving musicians. Our purpose at Ouachita High Country is to bring visitors and community members together in this magnificent place throughout every season. Serving as a guide through the exciting trails, scenic highways, sparkling waterways and other unique destinations, the trailhead begins here with this inaugural Spring issue. We thank you for taking the journey with us and hope that you join us for our upcoming Summer issue as we continue to explore the wild and wonderful Ouachita countryside.

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NE W TO T H E O U A C H I T A S

Rod & Gun Club

Arkansas has an enduring frontiersman spirit recognized by sporting men and women all over the country. The expanse of vast green forests, natural waterways, and sparkling lakes provide a breeding ground for some of the best game hunting and trophy fishing in the country. Whether in the duck blinds while pointing your rifle toward a blue sky or on an open lake with rod and reel in hand, the thrill of the game springs up feelings of joy and excitement among many here in the Natural State. The natural Ouachita landscape offers truly invigorating opportunities for sport. It abounds with areas of interest for those who are both new and experienced in hunting and fishing. The Ouachita Rod & Gun Club hopes to facilitate new interest in the region and act as a lightning rod for outdoor enthusiasts from all over America.

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This regionally-based club aims to promote a connection between those who have an interest in experiencing vibrant Arkansas wildlife. Organizing a self-sustaining legacy that will foster interest in the outdoor lifestyle, the club continues to establish relationships with professional guides whom are experts in their specific fields. “It’s all about establishing a community where a sportsman can come and feel comfortable with a group of others with similar interests,” says David Twiggs, Chief Operating Officer of Hot Springs Village. Membership to the Ouachita Rod & Gun Club offers a chance for anglers and hunters alike to experience the beauty and wonder of Arkansas in a new way. The entry fee is only $10 and includes tournament entry and an official 2014

Bonding Over Common Interests on Arkansas Sporting Grounds by Jim G. Miller photograph by Bespoke Video Production

Rod & Gun Club membership. It is open to those interested in all that the natural Ouachita country has to offer. On April 26th there will be a Sunrise Kayak Fishing Tournament from 8am to 1pm at Lake Cortez in Hot Springs Village. A membership party will follow at 5:30pm and will be catered by Ken Robinson’s food truck. On May 9th the club will host a second membership party featuring trap shooting and barbeque. It will be $5 per round of 25 clay pigeons. The trap shoot will be hosted by the Mountain Valley Sportsman’s Association with Range Boss organizer Tom Sackett and Safety Officer Bill Kasdorf on site during the event. For details regarding the event, contact the Hot Springs Village Administration Office or visit hsvpoa.org.


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NE W TO T H E O U A C H I T A S

Ouachita Sports Trail

Imagine a trail with 207 holes of golf interspersed with tennis courts, hiking and mountain biking trails, and lakes and rivers galore. This is a one of a kind sports trail, and it’s all interconnected throughout the organic Ouachita landscape.

highlights on the trail for those interested in its plentiful opportunities to pursue wild game such as duck and whitetail deer. Also, with nearly twenty lakes within an hour and a half away, there are a multitude of options for fishing and recreational water sports.

Including much more than its world championship quality golf courses, the trail will feature everything the region has to offer. The surrounding cities boast a fascinating history as well as endless scenic vistas for anyone interested in exploring the undiscovered wonder of the Natural State.

The Ouachita Sports Trail is a grassroots project that will also highlight many of the most pristine golfing destinations of the South. The finest scenic highways interconnect the trail and provide a stunning glimpse across its lush and natural surroundings. Partnering with local hotels and rental companies, the trail will offer unique and affordable lodging in this inspiring springtime landscape.

“You’ll see a lot of golf trails throughout the country, but there aren’t a whole lot of sports trails in the area,” says John Paul, Director of Golf for Hot Springs Village. Fishing and hunting will of course be

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“It’s really a organize and

grassroots effort to develop sustainable

From the Green and Everything in Between by Jim G. Miller image courtesy of Hot Springs Village

tourism using the great recreational assets of the Ouachita National Forest and surrounding areas,” says David Twiggs, Chief Operating Officer of Hot Springs Village. Because of the trail’s close proximity to the nearby cities, visitors are able to stay longer and enjoy themselves in a comfortable and healthy setting. By connecting our Ouachita towns and neighborhoods with a beautiful reason to soak in some sunshine, we can enjoy a more unified mountain community. Before venturing out into the Arkansas wilderness, try out the Ouachita Sports Trail to experience the truly extraordinary facets of the state. For further details about the golf courses and other sporting areas of interest located on the Ouachita Sports Trail, contact the Hot Springs Village Administration Office.


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FARE

Superior Bathhouse

“I remember before we opened, walking down to the Superior Bathhouse and seeing imprints on the glass where people had stuck their faces against the window trying to look inside to see what was going on,” laughs owner and proprietor Rose S. Cranson. Now those same people are looking outside, usually while sipping a craft brew and watching the folks of Hot Springs meander up and down historic Bathhouse Row. A tranquil historic bathhouse converted into a pub haven and shaded by large magnolia trees, the Superior Bathhouse is the last bathhouse on the far north end, giving it perhaps the best vantage point of the historic Arlington Hotel and Arlington Lawn.

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Designed by Hot Springs architect Harvey C. Schwebke and completed in 1916 on the site of an earlier Superior Bathhouse, its original enclosed sun porch is often seen now bustling with people the way it might have been when bathing was in full swing in downtown Hot Springs. Resurrected in 2013 after being abandoned for three decades, the red brick façade is now brewing with new life, and it is a must-do for both locals and visiting guests of Hot Springs National Park. The original green neon script that reads “Superior ” now glows on a black chalkboard above the beer taps. Superior Brewery changes its craft beers on its sixteen draught tap with every season. The courteous brew crew in Superior is constantly

Springs into the Season with Fresh Spirits and New Brew by Jim G. Miller photography by Jeremy Rodgers

keeping up with remarkable and delicious beer from independent breweries. There is a large variety from which to choose including premium as well as moderately priced great tasting beers. The brewery boasts an ever-changing variety of specialty microbrews from all around the country as well as the best from regional breweries in Louisiana, Oklahoma, Missouri, Missisippi, and of course, Arkansas. Beers like the ones from Diamond Bear Brewing Company in Little Rock and others are prominent on the draught tap suspended from the historic bathhouse ceiling. If you want a sampling of different tastes, or if you just can’t make up your mind, try a flight of four beers.


The selection of beers currently offered includes rich high gravity or special beers in addition to beers poured with a special nitrogen faucet. These are used for creamy stouts or special pub ales including barrel aged beer, ciders, wines, seltzer water, and even root beer. Sitting perfectly between Bathhouse Row and the Grand Promenade near miles of hiking trails, Superior is the perfect place to take a break on a nice spring day. The craft beer tasting room hosts a happy hour Monday through Thursday from 3pm to 6pm. Along with the best pub fare for lunch and dinner, the Superior also hosts large parties and private events with an all around friendly and courteous hospitality staff. Being the only brew pub of its kind in a national state park, soon thermal waters will once again be tapped into its pipes to distill and brew the finest libations in Hot Springs. Besides their thermal brews, there are plenty of other treats to

satisfy you at Superior whether you are hungry or thirsty. The Superior root beer is made using spring water from Hot Springs as well as Arkansas honey from local beekeepers. A perfect companion to the root beer is definitely the gelato. Marque Haupert owner and operator of Gelato Di Superior brings the love of Italian ice cream to Bathhouse Row. Embelishing your Superior Root Beer with a scoop or two of her vanilla gelato is a delicious way to enjoy a springtime visit to Bathhouse Row. Aside from vanilla, Haupert artfully creates other distinctive gelato flavors using her own spin on this traditional Italian style dessert. Hot thermal spring water, modern craft brews, and excellent local pub fare are turning this historic bathhouse into a hub of downtown Hot Springs -- one that is worthy of its vibrant community and history. Superior Brewery is an excellent spring destination for families and friends visiting Hot Springs National Park.

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MUSIC

Brian Martin

Brian Martin is a tried and true Arkansas folk musician. He lives off his tip jar by singing about his longings for someone or something whether it’s a lost love or Grandma’s sweet home cooking. A foottapping fixture of local farmer’s markets, social clubs, bars, house concerts, and dives of all kinds, Martin lets the ebb and flow of southern life lead his creative process, and he will soon release a new album inspired by the particular struggles and wisdom gleaned by a Ouachita artist. “Some days I feel like writing a tender ballad; some days I wanna peel the paint off the walls,” Martin explains. What makes Martin a great writer and performer is his raw sincerity and receptiveness to the land and people around him. Much like the folk stories of the nearby hills, Martin’s songs are

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A Mountain Voice Wanders: From the Ouachitas to the Ozarks and Back Again by Jim G. Miller • photograph by Chris Sale

distilled from the environment and the people shaped by it. With his ear to the ground he becomes a kind of musical seismograph, picking up on even the subtlest rhythms of the rural experience, whereupon he relays them to the listener through the personal rhythms of his music and verse. He brings to the surface what the listener forgot was always inside of himself. There is a colloquialism in the timbre of his voice and the cadence of his guitar similar to his manner of speech and the demeanor of his stride. It is quite clear that Martin lives and breathes the chords he plays and the words he sings. Martin sings with the awareness and soul of a man determined to attain a contentedness with the distressing heartache from where his songs belly up. The folk variety and smooth but

casual stage presence that resoundingly impress first time listeners disarm even the most stalwart of music snobs. His rhythmic finger picking combined with the humming of his harmonica is something like the symphonic collision of a beating heart with a chugging freight train. It’s unexpected and so all the more powerful. Growing up in Southern Arkansas, Martin would not have dared to refer to himself as a philosopher of sorts, but like many great songwriters, he has developed a naturally intuitive way of contemplating the heart of the folk experience. “I don’t know where the stuff I write comes from sometimes,” says Martin. “I think the lyrics just float around my head like lightning bugs,” he laughs. Intimacy with an audience is crucial for Martin: “I’m most appreciative of the


AROUND HERE, THE FUN

never sleeps shows where the audience has come with the specific purpose of hearing the artists’ songs and stories. I love doing house concerts and listening-room venues because the atmosphere is just so much more conducive and open to building a connection between the artist and the listeners.” Martin recently has become a favorite of the Rock Porch Sessions that take place in Hot Springs Village. These sessions feature talented musicians from all around the state. Look for Martin and other musicians to be returning throughout the year. His debut solo album, No Rider, is available on his website and comprises many of his most cherished songs. His anticipated upcoming album which includes some of his newest and most gut-wrenching ballads, is scheduled for release this year. The new work will include both the light hearted songs that have come to be a celebratory staple of his performances as well as a few more personal tracks that might find the listener holding back a tear or two. Martin will once again be reuniting with the band “Sad Daddy” at Maxine’s Live on May 8th. Check out his music and his calendar of upcoming tour dates on www.brianmartinmusic.com.

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A R TS

Trees of Life

Imagine a brilliant and majestic forest that glows in both the day and night. It is made up of nearly every color in the rainbow from the tips of its branches to the base of its sturdy trunk. This is no ordinary forest. The trees that populate it are handmade by Hot Springs native artist Penny Herring, and the materials used radiate nothing but positive energy.

The Sculpted Mineral Forests of Penny Herring by Jim G. Miller • photography by Jeremy Rodgers

told myself that I was going to learn how to do these.” It was difficult for Herring in the beginning. It took her about six months to make her first tree using a petrified wood base with jade stone leaves. “I kept that first tree,” laughs Herring who says that it resembles the Charlie Brown Christmas Tree. Since creating that first tree, she has sold over 800 of them and has shipped them as far as China.

“I wasn’t familiar with any of the minerals before walking into the Lucky Strike Rock Shop,” says Herring. “I don’t think you can really know everything about crystals,” she says. They hold energy and are used in making radios, watches, and cellphones among other things. They are miraculous and versatile.

Lucky Strike Rock Shop has been in business for forty years. Adults who as kids browsed the many rocks, stones, and minerals are just as excited now as they were the first time they stepped foot in the shop. Herring has been at the shop for the past five years.

“Shirley Gossate was really my inspiration to get started. I found one of her old trees in the warehouse, and I put it together. I

“My favorite part is working with the customers,” says Herring. Her many new and repeat visitors come to view her work

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and the various minerals on display in the store. “Each year we get in a bus of about thirty people who have come here all the way from Russia,” she says. When Herring is not out front meeting new customers and sharing with them the many wonders at Lucky Strike, she is in the back making magic with minerals. Through the manipulation of copper wire and other materials, Herring designs trees of many different shapes and sizes. She refers to them as “Trees of Life.” She uses each stone to represent a leaf or a blooming flower, and each holds a different meaning. “Rose-colored quartz represents love while topaz indicates true love. Tiger’s-eye represents optimism, crystal stands for luck, moon stones mean happiness, and smoky quartz symbolizes a clearing of the mind,” she expounds.


When You Join Garvan, Each mineral has its own emblematic meaning that gives each tree a special purpose and symbolism. “It makes each tree even more significant especially when they are hand-selected by that person,” says Herring. “A lady came into the shop the other day, and she picked up a blue rock for her daughter. It was a piece of blue calcite that she said just spoke to her.”

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Using minerals such as amethyst, apache tears, citrine, crystal, garnet, lapis, quartz, and Wyoming jade, Herring has found her stride and is currently working on a major project for the shop. She refers to it as the “Neon Forest.” She is incorporating a special material known as Fenton Art Glass or opalescent vaseline glass that comes from West Virginia and glows under black light. Herring will display an entire forest of the trees this spring at the DeSoto Rock Shop in downtown Hot Springs. “I like to use the natural stones of course. I’ve made some with and without blooms and some with just leaves. My youngest daughter got me into making the real small ones that are no taller than three inches,” she explains. Right now as a part of the Neon Forest, Herring is working on her largest tree to date. It will be two feet tall with Fenton Glass, amethyst, and agate minerals. She is referring to the piece only as “Triple A.” Along with making the trees, Herring also designs jewelry and other specialty pieces that are sold in the Lucky Strike Rock Shop as well as The Indian Store in Jessieville. Her newest location is the DeSoto Rock Shop in downtown Hot Springs. Visit any of these nearby shops in order to view and purchase her “Trees of Life.”

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S P R I N G E V ENT C A L END A R

1

Ouachita Children’s Center Mardi Gras Ball | 6pm Hot Springs Convention Center

Rock Porch Session Balboa Club Lounge

Hot Springs Boat, Tackle & RV Show Hot Springs Convention Center

1-2

Verdi’s Requiem Robinson Center Music Hall arkansassymphony.org

2

2014 Little Rock Marathon Little Rock River Market District littlerockmarathon.com

Hot Springs Music Festival presents Kanade Duo | 3pm Garvan Woodland Gardens

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5-30 8

Village Community Foundation Concert Woodlands Auditorium Les Miserables Arkansas Repertory Theatre

Billy Currington ‘We Are Tonight’ Tour 2014 | 7:30pm Verizon Arena

Voces8 Woodlands Auditorium

8-9

The Wizard of Oz & Orchestra Robinson Center Music Hall arkansassymphony.org

9-10

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Student Directed Short Plays Arkansas Hall Auditorium, Henderson State University Elvis Tribute Artist Tony Witt Five Star Theatre, 701 Central

*1 April

3-5

Ricky Time Super Quilt Seminar Hot Springs Convention Center

Easter Egg Hunts Lake Catherine State Park & Lake Ouachita State Park

Eggsibition 2014 Benefitting Youth Home Jack Stephens Center UALR

Arkansas College Basketball All-Star Game Summit Arena

The World Famous Platters Five Star Theatre, 701 Central

Over the River and Through the Woods The Pocket Theater, 170 Ravine

Rock Porch Sessions Hot Springs Village

4 4-5 4-13 5

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Pagagnini Woodlands Auditorium

14-15

Arkansas School State Basketball Finals Summit Arena

10th Annual Valley of the Vapors Independent Music Festival Low Key Arts and Various Venues Downtown Hot Springs

Garland County Circle of Friends Splash of Red Event Hot Springs Convention Center

14-18

15 16 16

Stardust Big Band The Arlington Hotel

The Muses present The Four Seasons in Art and Song Garvan Woodland Garden

11th Annual World’s Shortest St. Patrick’s Day Parade Downtown Hot Springs

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Village Chorale Concert Woodlands Auditorium

Guys and Dolls Jones Performing Arts Center obu.edu/finearts/boxoffice

Racing Festival of the South 11-15 Oaklawn Park Collegiate Kayak Fishing 12 Tournament | Hot Springs Village Mahler’s Fifth Sumphony 12-13 Robinson Center Music Hall arkansassymphony.org

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Beauty and the Bride 2014 Bridal Expo Hamp Williams Building Titanic Dinner Theater Coronado Community Center Arkansas Derby Oaklawn Park HSV Symphony Guild Event Woodlands Auditorium


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St. Patrick’s Day Party Balboa Club Lounge

* May 1-3

16th Annual Hot Springs Corvette Weekend Hot Springs Convention Center

Art & Music Exhibition: Artwork Inspired by the Hot Springs Music Festival Repertoire Entry Deadline – April 9th Hot Springs Fine Art Center hsfac.org | Runs until June 17

Business Expo Coronado Community Center

From Roots to Leaves Tree Inspired Art Exhibition Hot Springs Fine Arts Center hsfac.org | Runs until April 29th

Arkansas Symphony Orchestra Concert | 3pm Garvan Woodland Gardens

Rock Porch Sessions Hot Springs Village

22

Pentatonix Robinson Center Music Hall Bluegrass Artists The Roys Five Star Theatre, 701 Central

Jack-n-Back Half Marathon 9am | Jack Mountain jack-n-back.com

21 23 27

Cher – ‘Dress to Kill’ Tour 8pm | Verizon Arena

2

2-3

2nd Annual “Smokelawn” Oaklawn

19 21-23 23 25-27

26 26-27 27-30

Sharon Turrentine Spring Concert | 3pm Garvan Woodland Gardens

5

Easter Egg Hunt DeSoto Golf Course

Cedar Mountain Singers Concert Woodlands Auditorium

Momentum presented by Ballet Arkansas The Arkansas Repertory Theatre balletarkansas.org Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory Ouachita Little Theater Kayak Fishing Tournament Hot Springs Village National Open House Hot Springs Village Malvern Arts & Crafts Fair Hot Spring County Fairgrounds

Running of the Tubs | 9am Downtown Hot Springs

29-30

BJ Thomas Woodlands Auditorium

21st Good Ole Days Festival Mount Ida Court House Square

3-4

33rd Annual Toad Suck Daze Downtown Conway toadsuck.org

Easter Ecstasy DeGray Lake Resort State Park

9th Annual Stueart 17 Pennington

2-4

4

Around the World Thursday: Thessaloniki, Greece Forty Two at the Clinton Presidential Center clintonfoundation.org

23 24

Shower the People: The Music of James Taylor Robinson Center Music Hall arkansassymphony.org

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8-9 9-11

Cinco de Mayo Party Balboa Club Lounge

Civil War Re-Enactment Mount Ida

Revolution Talent Dance Competition Hot Springs Convention Center

Saturday Night at the Lyric Showcase of Local Talent Ouachita Little Theater

Warrior Dash 2014 Mud Run Timber Lodge Ranch, Amity, AR

10 11

Rhonda Vincent & the Rage at South on Main 3pm | South on Main metrotix.com

12-14

Hot Springs Chamber Street Painting Festival Downtown Hot Springs

Elvis Tribute Artist Tony Witt Five Star Theatre, 701 Central Hot Spings Craft Beer Festival Hill Wheatley Plaza

Little Miss Arkansas Pageant Hot Springs Convention Center

British Crown Jewels Automobile Display 9am – 5pm Hot Springs Convention Center

The Humane Society of Garland County Annual Spring Gala | 6pm Clarion Resort

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June Mark Your Calendar! 1-14

Hot Springs Music Festival Season 19 Various Locales around Hot Springs

The Arkansas State HOG Rally Hot Springs Convention Center

5-7 6-7

36th Annual Lum & Abner Festival: Radio Shows Janssen Park, Mena visitmena.com

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TRI-the-Village Sprint Triathlon Hot Springs Village

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KAYAK FISHING

Getting Hooked in the Ouachitas by Jeremy Mackey photography by Jeremy Rodgers and (pg 22-23) Corbet Deary

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Kayaks & Anglers Find a Reel Paradise


“To go fishing is the chance to wash one’s soul with pure air, with the rush of the brook, or with the shimmer of sun on blue water. It brings meekness and inspiration from the decency of nature, charity toward tackle-makers, patience toward fish, a mockery of profits and egos, a quieting of hate, a rejoicing that you do not have to decide a darned thing until next week. And it is discipline in the equality of men - for all men are equal before fish.” - Herbert Hoover I’m not sure Hoover was talking about modern fishing. Long gone are the days of sitting quietly and patiently, waiting for a fish to bite. These days when you mention fishing, images of big shiny boats with powerful engines screaming away from the launch immediately come to mind. Hot Springs and the surrounding areas have always been a destination for big bass enthusiasts. On any given weekend in the summer you’ll see hundreds of boats speeding along the water in search of fish. You can cover the entire expanse of Lake Ouachita many times over in a bass boat without catching a single fish. I like to think that Hoover would have foregone the use of loud, gas guzzling, turf-floored speedboats and would’ve opted instead for the serenity of fishing from a kayak. Ou a c hit a H ighCo u nt ry.com

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KAYAK FISHING

There are many reasons why kayak fishing is becoming more popular: remote area access, serenity, exercise, economy -- the list goes on. Local angler Adam Castle sums it up very nicely by explaining that “the obvious things are always there: the fact that you can go where no other boats can go, the beautiful places you get to visit, and some of the unique things you get to see, but I actually catch two to three times more fish from my kayak than I did from my large boat.” An added bonus to fishing from a kayak is the lack of maintenance. Bass boats require gas, oil, and winterization. Kayaks are easy to maintain with their main concerns being inside storage, a little plastic protectant, and optimally a daily watering. Large bass boats also need a trailer to haul them and a large ramp for water access. Even the largest

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kayaks can be easily hauled on a car-top or thrown in the back of a pick-up. The bottom line is that kayaks are easy, fun, and suited for anglers. But could it be that kayak fishing is just a trend; is it something that will come and go? According to Woody Callaway of Legacy Paddlesports, “no.” “Fishermen and anglers have a passion for fishing. It’s in their blood.” He adds that “fishing from a kayak makes you a better angler. You don’t just pull up anchor and motor five miles away to another spot. You work each area longer and figure out what the fish are doing, becoming better.” While kayak fishing began to grow on the coast, its popularity has definitely moved inland, and Arkansas, especially the Hot Springs area, is a kayak angler’s paradise. There are five major lakes within an hour

and a half’s drive: Ouachita, DeGray, Catherine, Hamilton, and Greeson. There are also plenty of rivers in the area: the Ouachita River above and below Hot Springs, the Caddo River, the Saline River, the Little Missouri River, Forche La Fave, and the Arkansas River. Let’s not forget all the lakes inside Hot Springs Village and the bodies of water in the Ouachita National Forest. With all of these resources, most stocked with fish from the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission, it’s no wonder that seasoned anglers are making the switch to a kayak, and seasoned kayakers are beginning to fish. With all the serenity, beauty, exercise, and exploration offered by kayak fishing, let us not forget that fishermen will always be competitive, and there are a number of ways to test your mettle against other kayak anglers. Tim Wicker was searching


for just that when he started fishing from a kayak four years ago and found others looking for the same camaraderie. That group is known as the Central Arkansas Kayak Anglers, or CAKA for short. “In 2013, our inaugural year, we had over thirty anglers participate in one or more of our tournaments. We went from six anglers meeting in February to over 150 in our CAKA Facebook group.” The group is constantly growing, and this season they have eight tournaments and three just-forfun outings, one of which includes a striper camp-out on Lake Ouachita. Central Arkansas, especially the Hot Springs area, is receiving attention on a national scale. On April 12, 2014, Hot Springs Village will play host to the College Kayak Fishing Tournament series. Local

outdoor store and kayak shop, Ouachita Outdoor Outfitters, is hosting two other national tournament series. The Adventure Fishing World Championship will hold a qualifying tournament on Lake Ouachita on April 5th, and Drew Gregory’s ‘RiverBassin’ tournament series will be held on April 26. Hot Springs Village will also host a kayak fishing tournament on April 26 in conjunction with the Ouachita Rod & Gun Club membership party. For information on kayak fishing opportunities coming up in the area, you can visit the following websites: ouachitaoutdoors.com centralarkansaskayakanglers.com collegekayakfishing.com riverbassintrail.com adventurefishingworldchampionship.com

It’s not easy to describe how challenging, rewarding, and fun fishing from a kayak can be. There is only one way to find out: get out there, wet a line, dip a paddle, and get hooked.

Jeremy Mackey is the Sales Manager at Ouachita Outdoor Outfitters. An avid kayaker and overall outdoor enthusiast, Mackey has promoted recreational sports in Arkansas for nearly his entire life. A local resident of Hot Springs, Mackey values the natural surroundings of Arkansas and promotes local and sustaining businesses throughout the Ouachitas.

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HIGHWAY 7

Natural Springs, Wishing Wells, Fleeting Scenic Scenes by Jim G. Miller

Highlights of Historic Highway Seven North

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Cutting through the Ouachita Mountain landscape, scenic Highway 7 North is considered a jewel among scenic drives in Arkansas. More than just a feast for the eyes of tourists and motorcycle enthusiasts, it is also populated with sites well worth the visit for locals and Ouachita region residents. The highway was known as the “Old Little Rock Highway” because it was the main route to Little Rock. It was also referred to as “The Wire Road” because the first telegraph wires that ran into Hot Springs were installed along this route. Highway 7 North was first formed as a trail by animals and then hunters for traveling to the natural waters of Hot Springs valley. Native Americans, then white settlers, and eventually thousands of visitors from all over the world, would soon populate the trail to Hot Springs. Only graveled in 1922, the road was the first route leaving Hot Springs to be paved in 1925. After the induction of the stagecoach and road paving, automobiles would become a sight to behold on the major highway. Beginning on the outskirts of historic Park Avenue, it was once strewn with some of the finest hotels, nightclubs,

tourist courts, and elegant homes in Hot Springs. Retaining much of their majesty, fine homes like Wildwood and the Fordyce Ricks Estate have been well maintained and still retain some of their once immaculate splendor. Beyond the fringes of Park Avenue, scenic Highway 7 North winds through the Ouachita landscape around Fountain Lake, Hot Springs Village, Jessieville, and finally the town of Ola and the northern boundary of the Ouachita National Forest. Although many of the former pit stops for travelers have passed into history, they are worth noting, and some still stand as viable businesses and landmarks today. If you happen to be craving some southern fare while traveling the route, there are a few places worth visiting along the way. Mickey’s BBQ is close to town and sits right next to the turn to Gulpha Gorge. There is also Deb’s Café in Fountain Lake, the Home Plate in Hot Springs Village, and The Shack in Jessieville. There is no shortage of Southern home cooking along Highway 7 North. If you find yourself thirsty, the Mountain Valley Spring Water Bottling Facility is also on the highway. Found in the small community of Mountain Valley

at 283 Mountain Valley Place, the plant provides tours for visitors. If you are interested in the famous Hot Springs water, it is a must-see. Four miles outside of Hot Springs on the way to Fountain Lake, you may see a white archway that held what most people had once referred to as the original Fountain Lake, also known as Fountain Lake and Arbordale Mineral Springs. The property is privately owned now, but between 1933 and 1949, it was a very popular entertainment complex. Complete with picnic areas, a large swimming pool, cottages, a dance pavilion, lodges, a wishing well, and pinball arcade, it was a prime tourist destination. The property also boasts twenty-five natural springs, five of which allegedly produce up to a million gallons of spring water a day. Not far from the old Fountain Lake complex is the Cave Inn. Now serving as a small antique shop, the Cave Inn previously served as a diner and resting place for road weary travelers. The land around the Cave Inn is also rich with natural springs that rest on the foothills of the Ouachita National Forest. One spring rests only fifty feet from Highway 7 North. Ou a c hit a H ighCo u nt ry.com

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There is a cave that encloses the spring. Legend states a prospector searching for gold created the cave. Penetrating about 100 yards into the hill, the cave is filled chest-deep with cold spring water and is covered on the outside with a thick green moss that trickles with spring water. Another spring inside the Cave Inn is encrusted with native Arkansas crystal and is known as the wishing well. Both springs may be visited by the public and are constantly flowing with sparkling cold Ouachita spring water. The owner of the Cave Inn states that it had once been a hideout for outlaws and gangsters alike on the route to the Spa City. Aside from being captivated by the historic aspects of Highway 7 North, one cannot forget about the scenery to behold as the highway divides the landscape of the Ouachita National Forest. The Ouachita National Forest is the South’s oldest national forest, beginning near the center of Arkansas and stretching into Southeast Oklahoma.

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The Ouachita National Recreation Trail begins at a trailhead near Highway 7 and stretches 192 miles through Ouachita National Forest. Because of the low elevations and southern latitude, this 223-mile trail is best to hike in the early spring and late autumn. For travelers touring the Rangers National Park Station just outside of Jessieville, there is a great checkpoint to stop and learn information about the nearby wildlife. For a peek at some of the nicest views that the Ouachita National Forest has to offer, the Winona Auto Tour is a great scenic detour. With a gravel road, this route is recommended for drivers with more than just two wheels on the ground. The first vista on the Winona Auto Tour is only 6.8 miles from Highway 7 North. Known as the Oak Mountain Vista, it provides a beautiful view of the Ouachita Mountains. The Ouachitas are known for their high quality, quartz crystals which can be observed in deposits scattered throughout the mountain range.

Another point of interest along Highway 7 North is Coleman’s Crystal Shop and Crystal Mine. Open seven days a week, it’s well worth the time to stop and dig around in either the earth or the rich mineral collection found in the shop. Continuing north on the old Little Rock Highway and along the home stretch that is referred to as “Paradise Ride” by motorcyclists, you will eventually arrive at Nimrod Lake. The lake was created by the U.S. Corps of Engineers and is the oldest project of its kind in the state. It was designed originally to control flooding of the Fourche La Fave River and is home to excellent populations of crappie, bass, and catfish. In addition to the fishing on Nimrod Lake, there’s also a 2,400-acre duck hunting area and campgrounds. Highway 7 North presents a plethora of historical and natural sights to absorb along the way, each with its own unique story or point of interest that can turn any trip into a rustic, captivating journey. Regardless of where you stop, just enjoy the scenery and breathe in the fresh spring air.


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One Stop Crop: Farm to Table by Jim G. Miller

Hot Springs Village Green Market at Grove Park Boasts a Splendid Spring Harvest

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G R EEN M A R K ET

Farmers throughout the Natural State are excited to convene once again this spring at the Green Market at Grove Park. “We appreciate being able to provide fresh produce and meats to the folks in the Village,” says Jay Lee of JV Farms. The size and success of local markets throughout Arkansas have been increasing rapidly as more people embrace the advantages of eating and spending locally. In an effort to promote local shopping as well as a healthy, natural lifestyle, community gardens are becoming common throughout the country, and the Ouachita region of Arkansas is no exception. Spring growing projects such as the Village Garden Project are cropping up throughout the fertile landscape of Hot Springs Village, and locals and visitors can expect to see a multitude of flora and fauna both in and around the market. Attending the market is good for the body and the soul. It provides a chance to take in the crisp air and beauty of the spring while shopping rather than browsing under the fluorescent lights of a superchain. “One thing I like about being out in the Village is that you’re surrounded by forest. At any minute you might expect to spot a deer while setting up the tables for market,” says Greg Ray of Ray Farms. The market encourages a sense of community among the farmers, shoppers, and the local people as a whole. It’s all about supporting each other locally to make the community as self-sufficient and healthy as possible. JV Farms, a mainstay vendor at the market, offers an educational workshop in March and June about growing shitake mushrooms. As well as learning opportunities, the market and its vendors provide a way for locals to connect with each other. “We’re always doing farm-to-table style pig roasts with the neighboring communities while incorporating food from other vendors,” explains Lee. Rather than competition, it’s cohesion that allows the market to thrive. The dawning of spring marks the beginning of a vibrant and varied growing season for Arkansas crops. “The first things you’ll start seeing are kale,

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turnip greens, lettuce, radishes, broccoli, cabbage, and Swiss chard,” says Lee. Many farmers in the area who grow year-round in greenhouses will be able to provide vegetables earlier in the season, but you can expect a plethora of seasonal crops such as green beans, ripe tomatoes, and squash beginning in early May to late June. Scott and Loretta Elmore, owners of Ouachita Mountain Blueberry Nursery in Jessieville, have brought their blueberries to market for many seasons, and they love to have people come and pick their

own berries throughout the summer. Elmore announces,“Our blueberries will be ready by mid June, and we’ll have tomatoes, okra, peppers, and squash at market.” The Green Market at Grove Park offers much more than veggies, poultry, and meat. In addition to these traditional items, people of the community can purchase potted plants as well as locally produced jams, jellies, and baked goods. Various Arkansas honeys from all over the state are also quite popular, and you can even browse the crafts and creations of Arkansas artisans.

Currently, Hot Springs Village is preparing an area committed to the market and the farmers. “The new facility will be at a better location on the main road, and it won’t be far from where we’re currently located,” says Lee. “We did exceptionally well last year, and I think we will have an even greater harvest and turn-out this year,” Ray asserts. Stop by the first week of March to get some of the season’s first crops and to meet and greet the dedicated farmers, bakers, and artisans that serve the residents of the Ouachitas. Ou a c hit a H ighCo u nt ry.com

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ENTE R T A I N I N G

It’s the Season ... of blooming dogwoods, jonquils, and wildflowers. Gardens are being prepared in anticipation of the season of southern hospitality and charm. What better way to welcome the warm weather and bright colors of the season than to gather together with a springtime soiree? by Jennifer Huett photography by Jeremy Rodgers floral by House of Flowers

Jennifer’s Party Must-Haves for Spring: Jennifer Huett Associate ASID Shophousetohome.com Follow on Twitter @ShopHousetoHome Blog: shophousetohomeblog.com Located at Temperance Hill Square 4328 Central Avenue, Hot Springs

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Think Beyond the Walls

Spring is the perfect season for an outdoor feast. Bring indoor elements outside for a cozy feel. Brightly colored chairs and linens make a bold springtime statement.

Create a Focal Point with Flair

Use craft paper and stencils to sketch a welcome banner with your own unique theme. Adorning your banner with a beautiful flowering garland adds just the right touch of liveliness and elegance.


Never Struggle to Find a Seat

Have each guest ready to dine with personalized place cards. Bring color and freshness to the table by displaying the cards with fruits and vegetables. Simply fasten the name card to the fruits or veggies with a toothpick.

Mix and Match China to Make Your Grandmother Proud

Gather all your handed-down, beautiful heirloom dishes – bring together anything from dinnerware to stemware – to create an eclectic and original table setting. Old rules need not apply when dressing a table.

Take the Time for Details

Show your guests a little hospitality with a simple and stylish greeting. Begin with a plain, inexpensive platter and draw a decorative border around its edge. Paint the center with chalkboard paint for writing your greeting. It’s a clever and inviting way for you to welcome your guests. Ou a c hit a H ighCo u nt ry.com

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R E C I P ES

Farm to Table

Chef Angela Nardi Maps Out a Spring Journey for the Palate photography by Jeremy Rodgers

First Course: Pomegranate Citrus Quinoa Salad Ingredients

2 cups quinoa, cooked 1/4 cup of oil blend 2 oranges, segmented and juiced 2 lemons 2 limes

1 2 3 4 5 6 7

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2 whole pomegranates, seeds removed 3 tsp fresh parsley, chopped (AR) 1/2 avocado 1/2 heirloom tomato (AR) 1 cup spring mix (AR)

Cook quinoa in boiling water for 10-15 minutes then cool. Deseed pomegranate, set aside. Segment citrus and juice. Once quinoa is cooled, place in bowl and add citrus, oil, and season to taste. Slice tomatoes and avocado and place on bottom of plate. Mix spring mix and quinoa together and place on top of avocado and tomato. Garnish with pomegranate.


About the Chef

Second Course: Spicy Ginger Mussels Ingredients

1 lb. mussels 3 tsp garlic, chopped (AR) 1/4 fresh ginger root, peeled and sliced 1 jalapeno, julienned (AR) 1/4 cup of shitake mushrooms, sliced

1/2 cup Gueuze Tilquin Beer (or you may substitute with any light citrus beer) 1/4 stick butter 3 tsp fresh parsley, chopped French baguette, grilled

1 Melt butter in sauté pan, add mushrooms, jalapenos, ginger, and garlic, sauté for 3-4 minutes.

2 Add mussels and beer, cover and cook 5 minutes or until mussels are open. 3 Serve with grilled baguette and garnish with parsley.

Third Course: Lemon Basil Chicken w/ Creamy Red Pepper Orzo

Ingredients

2 4oz. chicken breasts 3/4 cup flour salt and pepper 1 lemon, juiced 6 leaves of basil (AR) 1/2 cup of chicken stock 2 tbsp butter 1/4 cup white wine

2 tbsp onion, diced 1/4 box Orzo 2 tbsp onion 2 tsp garlic (AR) 1 red bell pepper, small dice (AR) 2 cups heavy whipping cream 1 cup parmesan cheese, grated parsley (AR)

For Orzo 1 Cook orzo, set aside. 2 In sauce pan sauté onion, garlic

For Chicken 1 Dredge chicken in seasoned flour. 2 Sear chicken, then remove. 3 In same pan, add onion and garlic. 4 Deglaze with wine and add stock. 5 Put chicken back in pan and cover

and bell pepper.

3 Add wine, reduce until almost gone 4 Add cream, bring to a simmer. 5 Add orzo, cheese, and parsley.

and cook 4-5 minutes.

6 Add butter and basil. Plate with orzo.

The bounty of springtime in Arkansas brings the return of life to the outdoors as well as the people. Livelier lifestyles make for hungrier appetites. Luckily Head Chef Angela Nardi has been studying her time-worn cookbook and toiling in preparation for what will be on the plate this season. The notoriety of Chef Nardi’s pub cuisine is only natural because of her knowledge, experience, and attention to detail when coupling unique hand crafted beers with the aroma and flavor of each meal. As the featured chef for the upcoming Chef’s Table Series in Hot Springs Village, Nardi has meticulously created a representational spring journey for the palate using wholesome farm-to-table ingredients grown by local Ouachita farmers. A third generation chef, Nardi puts promise and passion into the pub fare served up at Superior Brewery, complimenting each perfect bite with an aesthetic flair that is lovingly sculpted into each dish. The future at Superior tastes promising with new ingredients and new beer with the dawning of every season.

Mark Your Calendar!

July 28, 2014

Sample the seasonal cuisine of widely known regional chefs, featuring a unique menu paired with drink selections. Tickets are available for purchase through HSVTicketSales.com. Ou a c hit a H ighCo u nt ry.com

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The Ideal Location for a Golf Outing or Tournament Let our staff handle all of the details while you concentrate on the business at hand. Our golf professionals can help you decide which course and what format best suits your needs. Plus, we have a selection of banquet halls, meeting rooms, pavilions and other facilities perfect for the award ceremony or a luncheon after your event. Inquire about our daily business to business golf rate specials: teetimes@hsvpoa.org

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37


P EO P L E

Making It on the Green: Golfers Who Mean Business by Jim G. Miller photography by Jeremy Rodgers

“If you watch a game, it’s fun. If you play it, it’s recreation. If you work at it, it’s golf.” - Bob Hope

Important decisions are made on the green. It’s as though the elements of the game have become incorporated into the business of the everyday. The methodical and strategic flow of the sport coalesces with the nature of the individuals who live and breathe it. Machiavelli would have been a golfer had it been invented during his lifetime. U.S. Presidents, celebrities, ambassadors, and numerous other affluent

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and important individuals have floated a golf ball into a cloudless blue sky. It is an honorable and competitive game for the most determined minds, and often those with the deepest pockets, for wealth has been made and spent on the links. But, it is also a game easily enjoyable among close friends with lifelong relationships forged on the greens.

The green is a powerful thing: the rolling expanse, the smell of the grass, the thrill of the first teeing off. It means something different to everyone who plays the game. For some people it is symbolic of the strategy and determination one must develop in life, and for many players it has actually shaped their lives whether professionally or personally.


Norma Hartney

Lives in: Hot Springs Village Profession: Retired United States Postal Service Manager

Jim Jordan __

Lives in: Hot Springs Village Profession: Retired President

of Bancorp South

While no one can quite put a finger on which golf course is the best, the consensus is that golfing in Arkansas features some of the best in the country. “We get spoiled having such a large variety of golf courses in the area,” says Jim Jordan. Surrounded by the splendor of the Ouachita National Forest, many golf courses in the area boast breathtaking views. Spectacular scenery and historical charm are qualities of which Arkansas certainly has no shortage. “When the weather is good on a spring day, I’ll often hear one of the guys I’m golfing with say that it’s just another day in paradise,” says Sug Wilson. Wilson started playing in 1950 at the age of twenty-one on the Oaklawn Race Track infield where there was once a nine-hole golf course. “The green fees were only a dollar, and it was considered to be quite the novelty at the time,” says Wilson. And it most certainly was unique to be able to play nine holes in the center of a racetrack where thousands would flock to gamble on horses. While golfing in the region can be a novel experience, for many it is also an enduring passion. “The sight of an eight year old carrying her bag with her father walking beside her is one of the things I love about golfing,” says Norma Hartney President of the Hot Springs Village

Women’s Golf Association. Hartney, who like many got hooked on golf later in life, takes pleasure in the rewarding aspect of working with junior golfers in order to help them advance in the game and toward opportunities like scholarships. For many, representing golf from the perspective of a role model is a crucial aspect of the sport. “I’ve seen many girls grow up playing golf who have gone on to win the US Women’s Open Championship. It’s very special to see them as kids and then see them progress into talented pros,” says Martha McAlister. A volunteer rules official for the US Golf Association, McAlister knows a thing or two about competition and playing by the rules. “Golf teaches

a certain mental discipline that doesn’t allow you to blame anyone else. It’s about you and the golf course,” she explains. Young people who accept the challenge of the sport distill its lessons of patience and focus. “Some days you play perfect or almost perfect, and that’s what makes you want to come back. Usually people have enough good days that outnumber the bad ones; it’s really a game for optimists,” says Pamela Spikes. “If you’re a perfectionist like I am then you will think you should be hitting the ball perfect every time, but it’s not going to happen. Some people say you never really have your golf game down pat even during a perfect round,” says Spikes. Like every sport, there is always a bit of room for improvement. Ou a c hit a H ighCo u nt ry.com

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P EO P L E

Sug Wilson

Lives in: Hot Springs Profession: Retired Furniture Store Owner

McAlister’s long time golfing partner, Pamela Spikes, has had a lifelong relationship with the sport. “When I was a kid, I used to tell my mom that everybody who plays golf is a good person. There is honesty to the game, especially in competitive golf. It’s a game of honor. It’s a wonderful game which is what makes this a great place to play,” Spikes exclaims. Both McAlister and Spikes have been golfing together since the age of fifteen and continue to play as much as possible. While golf is a stimulating pursuit personally, it’s also an excellent icebreaker for professionals. McAlister is a Maumelle resident who works as an attorney in Little Rock. “I had to keep working in order to afford my greens fees,” she jokes. While golfing can bolster business, sometimes the brass tacks can take a backseat to the actual game. A former certified public accountant, Spikes now teaches accounting at the University of Central Arkansas. “Working as an accountant for five years did terrible things to my golf game,” laughs Spikes. Now as a professor, Spikes has the opportunity to enjoy golf as much as she likes during the summer break. The thin line between work and play rears its head quite often. “As a lawyer I would sometimes take a client out to golf, but sometimes it would be a lose-lose situation,” says McAlister. “If you golf too well, they might think your golf game

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Pamela Spikes Lives in: Little Rock

Profession: Accounting Professor University of Central Arkansas

Joan Archer

Lives in: Hot Springs Village

Martha McAlister Lives in: Maumelle

Profession: Retired Chief Executive of Community Development

Profession: Attorney at Law Little Rock Arkansas

is more important than the case you’re working, whereas if you do poorly, then they are disappointed because you have let their expectations down.” Regardless of your score, there is something more essential gleaned from golfing with a fellow professional. “You find out about a person’s character and integrity in the span of four hours,” says Jordan, a retired President of Bancorp South. “I’ve made good friends and established a lot of good accounts during the course of an 18-hole golf game.” Another natural athlete and professional with a zeal for the game is Joan Archer.

Having participated mostly in tennis and swimming in high school and college, Archer didn’t begin golfing until she was in her thirties when she realized it would help with her career. As a former chief executive for multiple development organizations, golfing was a great way for her to meet and communicate with board members, community leaders, legislators, and media. “I credit much of my business success and relationships to golf, especially as a woman. Politicians in the 70’s, 80’s, and 90’s were predominantly men,” says Archer. “It helped out a lot that I could hit the long

ball. If there was ever a scramble, they wanted me on their team.” While the professional benefits of playing are clear, some have a pure passion for the competition and challenge. Former furniture storeowner Sug Wilson truly plays for the competitiveness of the sport. He has been an athlete all of his life. He played basketball for the University of Arkansas and played two years of professional baseball with the Chicago White Sox farm league before being inducted into the 2003 Arkansas Golf Hall of Fame. Wilson is not the only local player who has participated in the realm of professional sports. Ou a c hit a H ighCo u nt ry.com

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P EO P L E

Paul Lewis __

Lives in: Hot Springs Village Profession: Retired School Superintendent

“I’ve played tournaments all over the country from Long Island to California. Once it got a hold of me, it wouldn’t turn me loose,” says local golfer Paul Lewis. “Originally it was just a way to work off some stress from being the superintendent of a school. Now I volunteer at the Augusta National tournament every year thanks to a friend I have made through golfing in the Village.” Augusta is considered by many to be one of the most prestigious golf tournaments in the world. For those who do not have the opportunity to golf multiple courses around the country, the Ouachitas offer a great chance to develop your game with a variety of courses. “It definitely beats only having the same 18-hole course to play over and over again as is the case with many cities,” says Jordan. The multitude of courses with their varying terrains help to improve a player’s depth perception, experience, and breadth of skill in general. A player can take the skills honed on the greens of the Ouachitas into nationwide tournaments. The art of making the perfect swing has long been a standard challenge in golf, particularly among friends, and the perfect shot may sometimes draw a bet or two depending how much pocket change the players have buried in the bottom of their golf bags. “Some of my friends refer to it as the silver exchange because there’s so little money going back and forth, but it’s not about the money. It’s just fun to beat up on your

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friends, and sometimes it’s even fun to lose to your friends,” says McAlister. Betting on the greens is tradition amongst golfers, a tradition handed down from the forefathers of golf. “I can almost guarantee you that there aren’t many golfers who are not competitive,” says Spikes. But what happens when the cards are on the table, and it’s time to ante up? “Generally at the end of game, everybody meets up at the proverbial 19th hole to talk about their game. That’s just as much a part of it as anything else,” says Hartney. Players may have a post-game collective at the green’s country club, restaurant, or bar. Jordan

explains that “you’ll usually hear a lot of laughter coming from the 19th hole.” Some compete for pocket change, some have deals to make, and some are simply drawn to the challenge of tournament play. Regardless, all enjoy the camaraderie to be had among friends and the occasional clients, and others simply prefer the solace of the course and the surrounding Ouachitas. No matter the category the golfer falls into – whether retired or working, veteran or beginner – the people of the Ouachitas remain fulfilled by the many unique people and golf courses found in the region.


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Call for Submissions Ouachita High Country will take creative and nonfiction writing submissions for its quarterly releases. This call for submissions is open to current or former residents of Arkansas. Submissions may consist of short fiction, poetry, or essays. Submissions are currently being accepted for the upcoming Summer issue. Submissions should be limited to one per submitter and may be up to five pages in length. The deadline for the Summer issue is April 18, 2014. Please email submissions as an attached document to: Ciara Cerrato ciaracerrato.ohc@gmail.com Please include your name and contact information as well as the genre and title of your submission in the body of the email.

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GLANCE BACK

Spring Training

There is no better time to be in Hot Springs than during the Spring. This was the mutual consensus for baseball trainers and players alike throughout the turn of the century in the United States. Teams from all over the country converged in the city for the healing hot water and the happening night life that downtown Hot Springs provided. Pioneering the way for southern spa treatments and a passionate zest for life, Hot Springs was just the place for largerthan-life slugger Babe Ruth who trained regularly in Hot Springs. While in the city, he took advantage of hiking, bathing, and golfing as well as enjoyed Oaklawn Racetrack and downtown casinos. With its fine weather and the various amusements, the peak of the town’s appeal

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Looking Back at an Early Ouachita Moment from America’s Favorite Pastime by Jim G. Miller photography courtesy of the Garland County Historical Society

had no end even when compared to some of the larger cities of the day. Soon baseball parks in Hot Springs were as common as grasshoppers as they populated the town from Ouachita Avenue to the end of the old trolley lines on Whittington. The history of spring training is well described in Don Duran’s book Boiling Out at the Springs: A History of Major League Baseball Spring Training at Hot Springs Arkansas. “It’s the bible when it comes to information about spring training,” says Elizabeth Robbins, Executive Director of the Garland County Historical Society. On St. Patrick’s Day in 1918 Babe Ruth hit baseball’s farthest homerun to date, sailing the ball over 500 ft. out of Whittington Park. Although the original

park where the Babe hit his homerun may not be seen on Whittington Avenue today, the Alligator Farm where the fateful ball touched ground is still standing as a testament to one of baseball’s historic home runs. Throughout many historic parts of Hot Springs, one can read up on baseball lore thanks to the commemorative historic baseball trail. This trail commemorates greats such as Satchel Paige, Walter “Big Train” Johnson, Grover Cleveland Alexander, and Roger Hornsby. The buildings and structures that played an integral role in the happenings of Major League Baseball in the Spa City. Gold lettered informational plaques stand erect near places in Hot Springs that played an integral role in baseball


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such as the old train station and the old Hot Springs High School where Bill Clinton graduated. Hall of Famers of the sport such as pitcher Cy Young returned regularly to Hot Springs after retiring from baseball. Young was baseball’s all-time winningest pitcher with 511 career victories. The Baseball Hall of Fame has more than 200 members, and more than half of them trained in Hot Springs at some time during their careers. These early stars of baseball were not shy about meeting their fans and would often lounge in hotel lobbies or walk along Central Avenue and Bathhouse Row posing for photos with enthusiasts of the sport. To imagine these moments and therefor relive them while strolling Hot Springs’ historic paved sidewalks is a magical experience to fans of America’s favorite pastime. Many important moments in the early development of Major League Baseball occurred in the city such as when Babe Ruth flipped a coin with Yankees co-owner Colonel T.L. Huston for $52,000 rather than the $50,000 Huston was offering. Ruth called tails and won. The coin toss took place in the lobby of the historic

Eastman Hotel, and Ruth won a record salary for a major league ball player in 1922 who usually averaged about $1,000 per week, or $50,000 per season. Ruth is said to have frequented Hot Springs as late as 1941 after retiring from baseball. In fact, it’s rumored that the only reason he did not continue to come back was because of a crooked, high stakes card game that occurred in Hot Springs which caused the great Bambino to lose a great deal of money. Major League Baseball would not entirely disappear from Hot Springs until around 1942 with the dawning of World War II. A minor league tradition would attempt to fill the gap left behind with aspiring players, and the Hot Springs Bathers played until 1955. Some credit Major League Baseball for bringing the world to Hot Springs. Regardless of who gets the credit, one thing is for certain — Hot Springs left its mark on many of the greats of America’s favorite pastime, thus leaving its mark on the history of the entire country, and that is something that no one visiting Hot Springs will ever forget.

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I N Y O U R W O R DS

Like grandma’s patchwork quilt, the flamboyant summer fabric of the South would be nothing without the memories and stories of real people. Submit a colorful description about your most treasured summer memory to feature in the upcoming issue of Ouachita High Country. Send your writing submissions to: Render Creative Group attn: Ouachita High Country 801 Central Avenue, Suite 30, Hot Springs, AR 71901 or email info@rendercreativegroup.com

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Home to eight golf courses, including one 27-hole complex, the sheer number of courses sets us apart. Each course is distinct with its own unique character, beauty and set of challenges. No two courses are similar and no two holes are the same. Both the beginning and avid golfer can find a course that suits their skill level and competitive spirit at an affordable price.

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Ouachita High Country Magazine - Spring 2014  

Ouachita High Country Magazine - Spring 2014  

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