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Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Memorial Day concert a big hit




Hundreds of people gathered in the median of Whittington Avenue yesterday afternoon for a rollicking Memorial Day Concert by the Hot Springs Concert Band. Craig Hamilton put the band through its paces. The weather was gorgeous. The company was delightful. What a great way to spend a holiday afternoon.
The next outdoor concert for the Hot Springs Concert Band will be June 13 at 7 p.m. The concert will be in the new location, the median of Whittington Avenue. The regular park setting is being re-seeded.

Monday, May 30, 2011

Missing teen returned home

Missing Garland County teen Shelby Chapman has returned home safely. Thank you for the assistance and calls.

Garland County Sheriff's Department
525 Ouachita Ave
Hot Springs, AR 71901

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Street closing in Hot Springs

The right lane of Exchange Street, between the Exchange Street Parking Plaza and Mountain Street, will be closed for three days beginning Tuesday, May 31 for utility installation. Signs will be posted, and motorists are asked to travel an alternate route.

Register with FEMA for storm assistance

Although survivors of Arkansas' recent storms, tornadoes and floods have a variety of assistance options available to them, it's essential that they register directly with FEMA if they want to be considered for federal disaster assistance, say emergency management officials.

"Even if you registered with the state, the American Red Cross or any other organization, you still need to contact FEMA," said State Coordinating Officer David Maxwell of the Arkansas Department of Emergency Management. "There are federal dollars available to eligible Arkansans, so take the time to register with FEMA today."

It is recommended that Arkansans who registered for FEMA assistance in 2008 - or during any previous natural disaster - file new registrations as well.

Arkansans can register with the Federal Emergency Management Agency online at www.disasterassistance.gov, via web-enabled phone at m.fema.gov, or by telephone via FEMA's toll-free numbers: 1-800-621-FEMA (3362) or TTY 1-800-462-7585. Specialists are available by phone from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. local time seven days a week.

"If you're at all uncertain about whether you've applied for FEMA assistance, please verify your registration status. Call us, check online or visit one of our recovery centers so you're confident you're in our system," said FEMA's Federal Coordinating Officer Nancy M. Casper.

Federal aid is available under FEMA's Individual Assistance program to eligible Arkansans in Benton, Boone, Clay, Crittenden, Cross, Faulkner, Garland, Greene, Independence, Jackson, Jefferson, Lawrence, Lincoln, Lonoke, Madison, Mississippi, Monroe, Montgomery, Phillips, Prairie, Pulaski, Randolph, Saline, Washington, White and Woodruff counties.

Assistance can include grants for temporary housing and home repairs, and to cover other serious disaster-related expenses, such as medical/dental and funeral/burial costs. FEMA registration is also the gateway to potential low-interest disaster loans from the U.S. Small Business Administration.

Memorial Day exhibit at State Capitol

In honor of the Memorial Day Holiday ther is a special exhibit honoring American military personnel on display through the end of May at the State Capitol. The installation bears no name, as it is meant to be a simple remembrance in keeping with the reflective spirit of Memorial Day.

“We owe a tremendous debt of gratitude to our men and women of the military, as well as their families,” Secretary of State Mark Martin said. “The memorabilia in this display serves as a reminder of the service and sacrifice made by those who fought to ensure our freedom.”

The display, located in the first floor rotunda, features examples of American military uniforms from the past century, vintage publications, and military memorabilia, including a World War II-era serviceman’s Bible.

The uniforms and memorabilia are loaned from the collections of Mr. Harold Steelman of Little Rock. A graduate of the University of Arkansas, Steelman was a member of the legendary 1954 and 1955 Razorback Football teams. After years of coaching on the high school and college level, he later managed War Memorial Stadium. Steelman was the project creator for “In their Words,” Arkansas Educational Television Network’s World War II oral history project. A more extensive selection of Steelman’s collection will be featured in future exhibits at the Capitol.

The current exhibit will remain on display through Tuesday, May 31. The Capitol will be open over the Memorial Day holiday weekend during the hours of 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Senator Mark Pryor will be in the area June 3

Senator Mark Pryor to honor Arkansas Veterans, meet with community leaders and celebrate cancer survivors during upcoming state travels.

Senator Mark Pryor said he is looking forward to meeting with veterans, community leaders, students, and families in the upcoming week. Below is Pryor’s schedule for the week.

On Monday, May 30th at 10:00 a.m. CT, Pryor will attend a Memorial Day Ceremony to honor Arkansas veterans. The event will take place at the Arkansas State Veterans Cemetery, 1501 West Maryland in North Little Rock.

At 2:00 p.m. CT, Pryor will speak at the closing ceremony of the American Legion Auxiliary Memorial Day Celebration in recognition of the Arkansans who have given their lives in Iraq and Afghanistan. The event will take place at Riverfront Park in North Little Rock.

On Tuesday, May 31st at 7:00 p.m. CT, Pryor will attend the Captain’s Ball to kick off Des Arc’s Annual Steamboat Days Festival. The event will take place at Dondie’s White River Princess, 203 East Curran Street in Des Arc.

On Wednesday, June 1st at 8:15 a.m. CT, Pryor will meet with local elected officials and business leaders at the Bishop Park Community Center, 6401 Boone Road in Bryant.

At 10:00 a.m. CT, Pryor will meet with the Arkadelphia Regional Economic Development Alliance to discuss local initiatives. The meeting will take place at Henderson State University Community Education Center Alcoa Room, 640 South 6th Street in Arkadelphia.

At 12:00 p.m. CT, Pryor will participate in the Ouachita Timbers Purchasers Group Annual Meeting. The meeting will take place at the Fish Nest Restaurant, 164 Highway 70 East in Glenwood.

At 3:00 p.m. CT, Pryor will tour the Clinton Birthplace Museum, located at 117 Hervey Street in Hope.

At 3:45 p.m. CT, Pryor will tour the Hope Visitor Information Center and will meet with local elected officials and business leaders to discuss local initiatives. The event will take place at 100 East Division Street in Hope.

On Thursday, June 2nd at 9:00 a.m., Pryor will tour ITT Technical Institute and will visit with students about their ITT Tech experience. The event will take place at 4520 South University in Little Rock.

At 9:45 a.m., Pryor will tour the Little Rock Jobs Corps Center to observe how the Center is promoting the education of Arkansas students. The event will take place at 6900 Scott Hamilton Drive in Little Rock.

At 11:00 a.m., Pryor will tour Mabelvale Elementary School and will visit with the Administration about City Year’s impact on Central Arkansas. The tour will take place at 9401 Mabelvale Cut Off Road in Mabelvale.

At 1:30 p.m., Pryor will tour the Arkansas Lighthouse for the Blind and will meet with the director and department supervisors to discuss the Ability One Champion Program. The event will take place at 6818 Murray Street in Little Rock.

On Friday, June 3rd at 7:00 p.m., Pryor will lead the Survivors Lap at the Garland County Relay for Life. The event will take place at the Oaklawn Jockey Club in Hot Springs.

Memorial Day message from Congressman Mike Ross

Each year on Memorial Day, Americans join together to remember those who have given the ultimate sacrifice on behalf of our country and in the name of freedom and democracy. The debt owed to them is immeasurable. Their sacrifices and those of their military families are the cornerstones of our national security. Without the brave efforts of all of our service members and their families, our country would not live so freely or have prospered for so long.

On this Memorial Day, as we continue to be engaged in hostilities in Iraq and Afghanistan, we must always honor the young men and women who paid the ultimate price while wearing the uniform of our nation. Let us honor the memory of the more than 4,400 Americans who have died in Iraq and more than 1,500 who have died in Afghanistan. We should also honor the sacrifices of our wounded, including 32,000 U.S. troops in Iraq and 11,400 in Afghanistan.

As we remember their patriotic sacrifices, we renew our commitment to keep our promises to the nation’s more than 2 million troops and reservists and their families and 23 million veterans across this country, including the more than 250,000 right here in Arkansas.

On May 26th, I voted for and the House of Representatives passed the Defense Authorization Act for the 2012 fiscal year. This bipartisan bill provides our service men and women with the tools and resources they need to do their job by funding the Department of Defense and our troops for the upcoming fiscal year. It passed with bipartisan, nearly unanimous consent in committee and overwhelmingly passed the House of Representatives, truly reflecting that national security can and should be a joint effort by both parties.

Primarily, the bill’s provisions support our troops and their families by providing a pay raise for the troops, ensuring fair TRICARE premiums, providing new rights and protections for victims of sexual assault in the military and strengthening health care services for troops and their families.

The legislation also protects our troops in harm’s way, by authorizing investments in Mine Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) vehicles, skills and resources for combating Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) in Afghanistan and Iraq, and the modernization of Abrams tanks and Bradley fighting vehicles.

The measure significantly increases support for Special Operations Forces to combat terrorism and improves our nation’s cybersecurity efforts.

Finally, this bill gives our military the investments they need to carry out their missions successfully and quickly, while also recognizing our budgetary realities here at home. As we are looking to trim spending in every federal agency, this bill represents a $15 billion cut in Defense spending from the previous year and the cuts are mostly based on recommendations from the Pentagon itself. The White House has already ordered the Pentagon to cut $78 billion over five years, so this is a good first step.

The legislation also reflects the reality of our concluding mission in Iraq and the expected drawdown in Afghanistan by reducing spending on the Iraq & Afghanistan wars by 25 percent without harming our troops. This legislation recognizes America’s commitment to give our military what they need to get the job done and come back home as safely as possible.

On the battlefield, the military pledges to leave no soldier behind. As a nation, let it be our pledge that when they return home, we leave no veteran behind. This day and every day, let us honor their service with actions that fulfill our commitment to our troops, their families, and our veterans – and that are worthy of our grateful nation.

FEMA tweeting

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) offers Arkansans a quick way to stay up to date on disaster recovery operations related to the spring storms, tornadoes and floods: Become a follower of FEMA Region 6 on Twitter at www.twitter.com/femaregion6.

Already boasting more than 2,000 Twitter followers, FEMA's Denton, Texas-based regional office supports Arkansas, Louisiana, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Texas. With disaster recovery operations under way in Arkansas and the Atlantic Hurricane Season less than a week away, FEMA is striving to reach more Arkansans via Twitter.

"FEMA Region 6 on Twitter delivers breaking news about its work in Arkansas and other active federal disaster areas in the South. Followers will also be first to know about preparedness and safety practices, hazard alerts and other crucial information," said Federal Coordinating Officer Nancy M. Casper.

You can become a FEMA Region 6 Twitter follower in just four easy steps:

1. You will need a Twitter account. If you don't have one yet, follow the instructions on Twitter.com to create one.

2. Once you have your Twitter account, sign in and in the search box, type in "femaregion6"

3. At femaregion6, click on the "Follow" box

4. Receive daily tweets and re-tweet to your followers when you can.

FEMA and the Arkansas Department of Emergency Management (ADEM) offer a range of online and social media portals. Visit www.adem.arkansas.gov or www.fema.gov for more news and information about the Arkansas disaster. Follow ADEM on Twitter at twitter.com/AR_Emergencies. Other social media resources are http://blog.fema.gov, www.facebook.com/fema and www.youtube.com/fema.

Disaster recovery assistance is available without regard to race, color, religion, nationality, sex, age, disability, English proficiency or economic status. If you or someone you know has been discriminated against, call FEMA toll-free at 800-621-FEMA (3362). For TTY call 800-462-7585.

The Arkansas Department of Emergency Management (ADEM) is the state's homeland security and preparedness agency. The agency works to identify and lessen the effects of emergencies, disasters and threats to Arkansas by developing effective prevention, preparedness, mitigation, response and recovery actions for all disasters and emergencies. For additional information, contact ADEM at (501) 683-6700 or visit the website at www.adem.arkansas.gov.

FEMA's mission is to support our citizens and first responders to ensure that as a nation we work together to build, sustain, and improve our capability to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate all hazards.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Missing teen in Garland

Community Message has been issued by the Garland County Sheriff's Department.

Thursday May 26, 2011 4:34 PM CDT

Missing Female - 15 yo Shelby Chapman

Please be on the lookout for 15 year old Shelby Chapman, a reported runaway. Shelby is 5' 10" tall, weights 135 lbs, has Brown hair and Green eyes.

Shelby ran away from her Spring Street home on 05/25/11 and is allegedly in the company of her 23 year old boyfriend, Kody George, who also lists an address on Spring Street.

If you know the whereabouts of Shelby, please call Investigator Terry Threadgill at 501-622-3690 or email him directly at tthreadgill@garlandcounty.org.

Pryor protecting Arkansans

U.S. Senator Mark Pryor said he is pleased legislation to protect flood victims from FEMA’s mistakes passed the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee yesterday. The legislation will allow FEMA to waive repayments of disaster assistance that were erroneously distributed to individuals 3 years ago under the Bush Administration.

“The people are twice the victim. They are the victim of the storm, but then they are the victim of their government because FEMA has injured them by the way they have handled all of this – handing out the money erroneously and then demanding immediate repayment three years later,” Pryor said. “This bill rights the situation for them. I’m pleased it passed this hurdle, and can now go to the full Senate for consideration.”

Pryor said FEMA should pursue repayment of disaster assistance in cases of fraud, which is why he narrowly wrote the Disaster Assistance Recoupment Fairness Act. As modified, the bill allows the Administrator of FEMA to waive debt owed to the U.S. in which funds were distributed in FEMA error in situations where recoupment would be against “equity and good conscience.” The legislation clarifies that the Administrator may not forgive debt owed in cases involving fraud.

“We should absolutely pursue dollars that FEMA gave out when fraud was involved. However, some individuals did everything right and the errors were solely on FEMA’s part of the equation. Under these circumstances, my bill offers FEMA some flexibility to waive their debts,” Pryor said.

Pryor initially learned about FEMA’s collection efforts from a 73-year-old woman in Mountain View, Arkansas. In 2008, after completing an extensive application process and home inspection, FEMA approved $27,000 in disaster assistance for home repairs. Three years later, FEMA informed her that she was never eligible for assistance and that she must repay the funds within 30 days or face high interest charges or other collection actions. According to FEMA, similar “Notice of Debt” letters were sent to 34 additional Arkansas households. The 35 Arkansas households owe a combined total of $200,000.

Get ready for hurricane season

Individuals and their families are urged to "resolve to be ready" this hurricane season. The Federal Emergency Management Agency's, FEMA, Region 6 office has launched a new hurricane preparedness website to help you accomplish that goal. The website features facts about the 2011 hurricane season, as well as tools to help you execute crucial preparedness tasks such as assembling an emergency kit, formulating an individual and family plan and staying informed.

"We urge everyone to get ready now," said FEMA Region 6 Administrator Tony Russell. "You should not wait until a disaster is imminent; it's crucial that you take the necessary steps to prepare before a storm hits."

Lane closure in Hot Springs

The outside eastbound lane closing of Highway 270 in Hot Springs during daytime hours at the new Army Reserve Center will be reinstated today, May 27. Signs will be posted and motorists are asked to use caution when traveling in this area.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Senator Pryor actions yesterday

WASHINGTON D.C. – U.S. Senator Mark Pryor yesterdat introduced legislation that will protect consumers from corporate middlemen, called Pharmacy Benefit Managers (PBMs). PBMs drive up the cost of prescription drugs, can require consumers to use certain pharmacies, and share their sensitive health information to third parties for marketing purposes. In addition, his bill stops PBMs from gimmicks that delay reimbursement to community pharmacies.

Pryor said anti-competitive practices among health care industry players, including PBMs, are an often-overlooked component of skyrocketing health care costs. His legislation, the Pharmacy Competition and Consumer Choice Act, S.1058, prohibits PBMs from mandating consumers use a specific pharmacy and requires a PBM to notify the plans sponsor before selling or using claims data.

In addition, the legislation increases transparency by requiring a PBM to disclose information related to manufacturer rebates and discounts they are negotiating on the plan’s behalf, exclusivity arrangements with drug companies, as well as other practices the industry employs to increase profits. During a 2009 Senate hearing, an Arkansas pharmacist noted a case where the PBM charged a small, self-insured employer $126 for an employee’s prescription for Simvastatin, a cholesterol-lowering medicine. The pharmacy was paid $14.

“Americans already pay far more for their prescription drugs than individuals in other countries. We don’t need middlemen adding to the problem,” Pryor said. “My bill ensures that patients can at least choose which pharmacy to shop at and it increases transparency to prevent PBMs from overcharging patients.”

Pryor said his legislation would also benefit community pharmacists who are often hurt by abusive practices employed by PBMs. Like Medicare Part D, this bill would require plans to pay pharmacies within 14 days for clean prescription claims. PBMs can delay payments so they make money on the “float.” This provision would help assure that pharmacies have good cash flow and can remain in business. Additionally, the legislation would stop PBMs from unfairly penalizing pharmacies for insignificant typographical errors and instead keep the focus of any audits on the pursuit of fraud.

“Pharmacists in rural communities provide a convenient and important service in states like Arkansas. That’s why I’m working to keep doors open at community pharmacies and ensure that consumers have a choice of where to shop,” Pryor said.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Current weather warning

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE HAS EXTENDED TORNADO WATCH 371 TO INCLUDE THE FOLLOWING AREAS UNTIL 10 PM CDT THIS EVENING

IN ARKANSAS THIS WATCH INCLUDES 11 COUNTIES

IN CENTRAL ARKANSAS

GARLAND

IN SOUTHEAST ARKANSAS

BRADLEY CLEVELAND DESHA DREW LINCOLN

IN SOUTHWEST ARKANSAS

CALHOUN CLARK DALLAS HOT SPRING OUACHITA

THIS INCLUDES THE CITIES OF... ARKADELPHIA... ARKANSAS CITY... CAMDEN... DUMAS... FORDYCE... GOULD... HAMPTON... HOT SPRINGS... KINGSLAND... MALVERN... MCGEHEE... MONTICELLO... RISON... ROHWER... STAR CITY... THORNTON AND WARREN.

Wind advisory in effect today

Lake wind advisory in effect from 10 a.m. this morning to midnight CDT tonight.
The National Weather Service in Little Rock has issued a lake wind advisory which is in effect from 10 a.m. this morning to midnight CDT tonight.
* Timing... Gusty southwest winds will develop over Arkansas this morning and will continue through this evening.
* Winds... Southwest winds of 20 to 30 mph will be common with gusts up to 40 mph possible.
* Impacts... the winds will create rough conditions on area bodies of water. Use caution if venturing out on the water today.
Precautionary/preparedness actions...
A lake wind advisory indicates that winds will cause rough chop on area lakes. Small boats will be especially prone to capsizing.
A storm system will track from Kansas into Missouri through this evening... and will drag a cold front into Arkansas. Surrounding the system are strong and gusty southwest winds.

Weather

Today
Windy with scattered thunderstorms, possibly severe during the afternoon hours. Damaging winds, large hail, and possibly a tornado with some storms. High 86F. Winds SSW at 20 to 30 mph. Chance of rain 60%.
Tonight
Windy... scattered thunderstorms, some strong during the evening, will give way to partly cloudy skies after midnight. Storms may produce large hail and strong winds. Low 62F. Winds W at 15 to 25 mph. Chance of rain 40%.

Memorial Day weekend schedule

The Village POA administration building will be closed on Monday, May 30 for the Memorial Day holiday. The lobby will be available on Saturday, May 28 from 8 a.m. until noon for property owner services, including ID cards, golf coupons, parking passes, etc. The POA offices will reopen on Tuesday morning at 8 a.m.

If you have any questions contact Property Owner Services at 922-5556.

The following schedule will be used for trash and recycling pick up for the Memorial Day holiday.

Monday, May 30 - No trash pickup.

Tuesday, May 31 - Trash will be picked up as scheduled.

Wednesday, June 1 - Trash will be picked up for Monday, May 30 customers. There will be no yard waste pickup.

If you have any questions about trash or recycling pick up, please contact the Public Works Department at 922-5524.

The Coronado Fitness Center will be open on Memorial Day, Monday, May 30 from 6 a.m. until 7 p.m. There will be not be any scheduled classes and the pool schedule will be:

6 a.m. to 8:50 a.m.: Lap Swim Only

9 a.m. to 10 a.m.: Turtles

10 a.m. - 6:45 p.m.: Open Swim

If you have any questions, please call the Coronado Fitness Center at 922-1230.

The DeSoto Pools will open for the summer on Saturday, May 28. The pools have the following schedule during the Memorial Day holiday.

Saturday, May 28: 10 a.m. to 7:30 p.m.

Sunday, May 29: 1 to 6 p.m.

Monday, May 30: 11 a.m. to 7:30 p.m.

Debris removal after the storm

The Village POA continues to clean up from the storm that moved through on April 25. POA crews and contractors are making progress, but it will take more time to complete the process of removing the debris and downed trees. There were 7,000 fallen trees from the storm.

Public Works crews will pick up any storm debris left on individual property owner lots that is neatly stacked, must be cut into no longer than 6 foot sections, at the street when crews come through those neighborhoods. Once crews have come through an area, they will not come back for storm debris.

Property owners may also include tree debris with their yard waste pick up. Yard waste tags will not be required for tree debris. Tree debris must be no longer than four foot in length and no more than three inches in diameter. Crews that pick up yard waste do so by hand and cannot handle larger materials. Yard waste pick-ups are made on Wednesdays and must be scheduled with the Public Works Department at 922-5524.

Individual property owners with storm debris may also take their tree debris to the gravel pit area for disposal. The gravel pit is located off of DeSoto Boulevard. Turn onto Terlingua near the Faith Lutheran Church, then onto Deposito Paseo. Go past the businesses, when the street turns to dirt; follow through the opened gates into the disposal area. Contractors and commercial ventures MAY NOT use this area to dispose of their debris.

Property owners, visitors and guests should use caution along the northern edge of Lake Balboa. As the storm came through, boats and boat docks were damaged, and debris can be found in this section of the lake.

Tree Responsibility

•The Public Works Department is responsible for clearing trees from roads and right of ways.
•The Planning & Inspections Department is responsible for clearing trees from common property.
•Private lots owners are responsible for removing trees on their lots, not only for fire safety, but to maintain the aesthetics and property values of Hot Springs Village.
The Property Owners' Association is providing contact information of property owners with downed and damaged trees so they can make arrangements to have their downed and damaged trees cleared. If you have any questions, please contact Planning & Inspections at 922-5562.

Please remember that storm clean up will take many weeks if not months to complete. Please be patient as POA crews work to clear debris while continuing their daily duties.

Tax on homes

In accordance with Amendment 79 of the Arkansas Constitution, homeowners in Arkansas may receive up to a $350 property tax credit on their homesteads. Eligibility for the credit is confined to a homeowner's principal place of residence.

Homeowners, 65 years of age or older or 100% disabled, may also qualify to freeze the assessed value of their principal home for property tax purposes. To freeze the assessed value of a home, an application must be returned to the County Assessor's office in the county in which the resident's principal residence is located.

To receive the freeze on the assessed value, a homeowner must complete the Homestead Credit Application and provide proof of age or disability. Once approved, the assessment on the property and associated land may not increase unless substantial improvements are made to the property or a millage increase is passed.

FEMA assistance for Villagers

A disaster declaration was received on May 2 for Garland and Saline County residents from storms that took place on April 25. This declaration entitles those with damage to apply for assistance from the Federal Emergency Management Agency, FEMA. Applicants have until July 2 to apply for assistance.

FEMA will be offering a short term disaster recovery center in Hot Springs Village, but a location has not yet been established. Applicants may apply by phone or online though. To apply by phone call 1-800-621-3362; to apply online go to www.disasterassistance.gov or m.fema.gov.

Applicants will need the following information to apply: phone number where they can be reached, social security number, current mailing address, address of affected property, brief description of the damages, and insurance information including policy number.

June at Garvan Woodland Gardens

Brush Strokes Art Exhibit
June 1 - 30
Come see the works of Hot Springs Village's talented Fine Art’s Group, “Brush Strokes" in the Magnolia Room during the month of June. 40 gifted artists from "Brush Strokes" will proudly display their original artwork with an emphasis on the wonder of nature. The works will be available for purchase.

Memorial Service hosted by Arkansas Hospice
June 5, Anthony Chapel 2 p.m.
For more information, contact Arkansas Hospice at 501-318-9992.

Brush Strokes Artist Reception
June 5
Come meet the talented artists whose works are on display the month of June during a reception in the Magnolia Room from 2 to 4 p.m. Everyone is welcome. There is no entrance fee required to attend.

"Vines - The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly" Workshop - Janet Carson Series
June 16
Workshop speakers include: U of A Cooperative Extension Service Horticulture Specialist Janet Carson, GWG Landscape Architect Bob Byers, Pulaski County Extension Service Agent Beth Phelps, and Suzanne Post and Michael Irby of Post Familie Vineyards.
Cost is $45 for GWG members and $55 for non-members. Advance reservations and pre-payment required. Call 501-262-9300/800-3656-4664.

The Muses Creative Artistry Project - "Summer Garden Party" Concert
June 19
The Muses Creative Artistry Project, a non-profit arts organization dedicated to preserving classical art and music through performance and education, will present the second concert in their "Four Seasons in Art & Song" series in the Anthony Chapel beginning at 3:00 p.m. Deleen Davidson and the Muses will present popular seasonal standards, instrumental and vocal. Cost is $25. All four concerts $80.
To purchase tickets call 501-463-4514 or log on to www.themusesproject.org.

Children's Summer Program - "Layers of Life"
June 20
9 a.m. to noon
Join educator and naturalist Roxana Rose for a hike through the Gardens’ Hixson Family Woodland Nature Preserve to study the “layers of life” that exist in the forest. This will be a hands-on exploration program that will have participants looking for and identifying all kinds of plants, insects, and animals and learning how they relate to one another in food chains. Participants will also record their discoveries in their very own nature journal.
The program is open to children ages 7-12. Space is limited to 20 children per session. Call 501-262-9300 (800-366-4664 outside the Hot Springs area) to register. Adults are encouraged to stay and enjoy the program with your child. All programs will include a light snack and bottled water. Participants will be walking on the Gardens’ paved and unpaved trails, so please wear appropriate shoes – NO FLIP FLOPS OR SANDALS. Cost for the program is $3.00 per child for GWG members; $5.00 per child for non-members.

Gardening 101 Workshop
June 21
Magnolia Room
Topic: "Harvesting the Sky with Rain Barrels and Rain Gardens" - 9:30 a.m.-Noon
Topic: "Hydrangeas for Sun and Shade" - 1 to 3 p.m.
Learn how to utilize rain - a valuable irrigation resource - in the morning session led by Katie Teague, a county extension agent specializing in agriculture and water quality. The program will include a demonstration on how to build your own rain barrel. Linda Lanier shares her extensive knowledge of hydrangeas in the afternoon session. Her presentation will cover specifics on growing, care, propagation, pruning, coloration, diseases, and preservation. This special lecture is sponsored by the Richard W. Averill Foundation, Garland County Master Gardeners, Ouachita Hosta and Shade Plant Society, and the Men's Village Garden Club.
Gardening 101 sessions are free to Garden members and previously registered volunteers; regular Garden admission applies to non-members. Advance reservations are recommended. Call the Gardens at 501-262-9300 / 800-366-4664.

Children's Summer Program - “All About Trees”
June 27
9 a.m. to noon
Come learn all about the wide variety of native and non-native trees at the Gardens with educator and naturalist Roxana Rose. Participants will be taught to use a key and key cards to identify trees, make a leaf collection using leaf presses, and create a plaster cast of leaves to take home.
The program is open to children ages 7-12. Space is limited to 20 children per session. Call 501-262-9300 (800-366-4664 outside the Hot Springs area) to register. Adults are encouraged to stay and enjoy the program with your child. All programs will include a light snack and bottled water. Participants will be walking on the Gardens’ paved and unpaved trails, so please wear appropriate shoes – NO FLIP FLOPS OR SANDALS. Cost for the program is $3.00 per child for GWG members; $5.00 per child for non-members.

Gardening 101 Workshop
June 30
Magnolia Room
Topic: "Cladiums and Elephant Ears" - 9:30 a.m. to noon
Topic: "Finding Your Creative Niche in the Garden" - 1:00-3:00 p.m.
Join advanced master gardener Larry Averill for an informative session summer's favorite foliage plants. He will discuss what type of soil, light, and food they require to thrive during Arkansas summers.
Kandy Jones, the Garage Sale Queen, shares her ideas for creating fun and unexpected elements for your garden utilzing recycled materials in the afternoon session.
Gardening 101 sessions are free to Garden members and previously registered volunteers; regular Garden admission applies to non-members. Advance reservations are recommended. Call the Gardens at 501-262-9300 / 800-366-4664.

Program in the park

In an event co-hosted by the Garland County Historical Society and the Hot Springs Parks and Recreation Department, Janis Percefull will present an interpretive speech program for audiences at Kenneth Adair Memorial Park, 358 Central Avenue. The event schedule is as follows:

May 26 through September 2 - Fridays and Saturdays, 12:30 until 2:30 p.m.

July 4 and September 4, 5 - 12:30 until 3:30 p.m.

Presenting herself as a character from the 1890s, Ms. Percefull will discuss the historical development of Hot Springs including Americans' belief in the medical benefit of the Ouachita thermal waters. The program is aimed at helping visitors gain a better understanding of the history of Hot Springs and to gain knowledge of its structural features. For more information, please contact Janis Percefull, 501-767-4779.

Hanamaki, Japan trip this fall


Retired Hot Springs teacher Christine Black, right, and daughter Joy Black.

The opportunity of a lifetime will be extended to interested area residents who would like to visit Hanamaki, Japan, Hot Springs’ sister city, from September 3-11.

The fall citizen delegation visit to Hanamaki will take place as scheduled, according to Sister City Program Coordinator Mary Neilson. "This year, more than ever, our sister city welcomes our support and the economic benefit derived from our visit,” said Neilson. “I have no doubt the incredible hospitality always extended by our sister city will be even more amazing this year. Sister city citizen delegation travel to Hanamaki is not just a tour or a vacation, although it is an incredible trip. Being part of the delegation allows individuals to experience Hanamaki, its beautiful countryside, the wonderful flavors of their food, the incredible hospitality of the people of our sister city, and the culture of the Japanese people."

Christine Black, retired teacher and administrator from Lake Hamilton High School, commented: "The trip I took to Hanamaki last year as part of the sister city delegation was incredible. I have traveled a lot, and it was one of the best trips I’ve ever taken. I especially enjoyed getting to know the people of our sister city and experiencing the Japanese culture. My daughter Joy went with me, and we highly recommend the trip to anyone. The Sister City Program is wonderful, one of the best things Hot Springs has going."

The group will spend the first two nights are spent in Tokyo, where they will visit ancient temples, shrines and tour the city. The following day, the delegation will travel by world-famous bullet train to Hanamaki, where guides take the group to visit shrines, museums, and onsen, or Japanese bathhouses. The accommodations are all western-style hotel rooms. The highlight of the trip will be the Hanamaki Festival, which takes place September 10 – 13. Delegation members are even invited to take part in the festival parades, and will have a special viewing platform to watch the festival dancers, mikoshi (portable shrines carried on the shoulders of local groups), and finally the lighted floats, traveling down the street to the sound of ancient rhythms.

The estimated travel cost of $3500 for single, or $3400 each for double occupancy includes airfare, transportation, lodging, tours, guides and most meals. The initial $500 deposit is due by June 1. For more information on how to join the travel group, contact Sister City Program Coordinator Mary Neilson at 501-545-6960.

Tentative Independence Day weekend festivities

Saturday
DeSoto Marina - 9 a.m. Canoe Races - 10 a.m. Paddleboat Races
DeSoto Pool 10 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. Inflatable Water Slide
Woodlands Auditorium - Hotel California Salute to the Eagles 7:30 p.m.
BBQ Cook off Balboa Beach Parking area 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Sunday
DeSoto Games Area 3 on 3 Basketball Tournament - 5 p.m.
DeSoto Pool 1 to 6 p.m. Inflatable Water Slide
Balboa Pavilion strut your mutt, Animal Welfare League - 1 to 3 p.m.
Balboa Pavilion Big Band Concert and Hot Air Balloon glow 7 to 9 p.m.

Monday
DeSoto Games Area Miniature Golf Tournament - 1 p.m.
Watermelon while it lasts
DeSoto Pool 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Inflatable Water Slide
Balboa Pavilion Beach Party - Hot Air Balloon - Disc Jockey - food and beverage vendors starting at 11 a.m.
Balboa Pavilion live band - 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. dancing
Fireworks - 9 p.m.

Saffir-Simpson Scale

Hurricanes are classified into five categories based on their wind speed, central pressure, and damage potential. Category Three and higher hurricanes are considered major hurricanes. Categories One and Two are still extremely dangerous and warrant your full attention.
Below is the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Scale
Category / sustained winds / damage / storm surge
1 / 74-95 / Minimal: Unanchored mobile homes, vegetation and signs / 4 to 5 feet
2 / 96-110 / Moderate: All mobile homes, roofs, small crafts, flooding / 6 to 8 feet
3 / 111-130 / Extensive: Small buildings, low-lying roads cut off. / 9 to 12 feet
4 / 131-155 / Extreme: Roofs destroyed, trees down, roads cut off, mobile homes destroyed. Beach homes flooded. / 13 to 18 feet
5 / More than 155 / Catastrophic: Most buildings destroyed. Vegetation destroyed. Major roads cut off. Homes flooded. / Greater than 18 feet

Terms to know

A hurricane watch means a hurricane is possible in your area. Be prepared to evacuate. Monitor local radio and television news outlets or listen to NOAA Weather Radio for the latest developments.
A hurricane warning is when a hurricane is expected in your area. If local authorities advise you to evacuate, leave immediately.

Hurricane names for this season

Each year June 1 makes many coastal residents quake in their boots as the hurricane season begins. The evil-eyed storms, hurricanes, plague the Gulf and Atlantic states from June 1 to November 30 each year.
This year, 2011, is a particular attention-getter, not for the predictions but for the fact the lists of hurricane names go into rotation and this year the list used in 2005 is back. The year 2005 is well-known for Katrina, Rita and Wilma and for 21 hurricanes exhausting the list and causing the storms at the end of the season to be called by Greek letters Alpha through Zeta.
There are six lists that continue to rotate. Names are retired when there is a hurricane so devastating it is synonymous with the year it hit. From the 2005 list five names have been replaced. Dennis was replaced by Don, Katrina was replaced by Katia, Rita was replaced by Rina, Stan was replaced by Sean and Wilma was replaced by Whitney.
Following is the list of hurricanes for 2011.
Arlene
Bret
Cindy
Don
Emily
Franklin
Gert
Harvey
Irene
Jose
Katia
Lee
Maria
Nate
Ophelia
Philippe
Rina
Sean
Tammy
Vince
Whitney

Hurricane preparedness week, May 22 through May 28

FEMA along with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration is attempting to raise awareness of steps that can be taken to help protect citizens and their communities and property before hurricane season starts, June 1.
Step One
Make a portable emergency supply kit including items like non-perishable food, water, a battery-powered or hand-crank radio, extra flashlights and batteries. The kit can be kept in your car in case you are told to evacuate.
Step Two
Make a plan. Your family may not be together when disaster strikes, so it is important to know how you will contact one another, how you will get back together and what you will do in case of an emergency. Have an evacuation plan if needed.
Step Three
Protect your property. Hurricanes cause heavy rains that can cause extensive flood damage in coastal and inland areas. Everyone is at risk and should consider flood insurance protection.
Step Four
Be informed. Hurricanes cause lightening, tornadoes, flooding, storm surge, high winds and landslides or mudslides. Have a plan for each contingency.

What's happening

May 26
The Kiwanis at 8 a.m. at the Coronado Center.
The Genealogical Society at 1 p.m. at the Coronado Center.
HSV Police Department meeting at 2:30 p.m. at the Coronado Center.
HSV Area Chamber of Commerce meeting at 4 p.m. at the Coronado Center.
DeSoto Dancers at 7:30 p.m.
The Aluminum Show, modern dance and visuals, at Robinson Center Music Hall, 426 West Markham in Little Rock, at 1 and 7:30 p.m.
Always Patsy Cline at Murry’s Dinner Playhouse in Little Rock, 6323 Col. Glenn Road. Dinner 6 to 7:35 p.m. Curtain 7:45 p.m. Ticket $28. Show only $23. Children under 15 $22. Call 501-562-3131 for more information.
HSV Safe Boating Week runs through May 27.
May 27
Brush Strokes at 9 a.m. at the Coronado Center.
Always Patsy Cline at Murry’s Dinner Playhouse in Little Rock, 6323 Col. Glenn Road. Dinner 6 to 7:35 p.m. Curtain 7:45 p.m. Ticket $32. Show only $27. Children under 15 $22. Call 501-562-3131 for more information.
Today is the last day of HSV Safe Boating Week.
May 28
Always Patsy Cline at Murry’s Dinner Playhouse in Little Rock, 6323 Col. Glenn Road. Dinner 6 to 7:35 p.m. Curtain 7:45 p.m. Ticket $32. Show only $27. Children under 15 $22. Call 501-562-3131 for more information.
Village Pickleball tournament starts today and runs through Memorial Day at the Family Recreation Area on DeSoto Boulevard. Fees are $20 per person for one event or $30 for two events. Call 922-0620 for more information or visit www.hsvpicklevall.org.
May 29
Always Patsy Cline at Murry’s Dinner Playhouse in Little Rock, 6323 Col. Glenn Road. Lunch 11 a.m. to 12:40 p.m. Curtain 12:45 p.m. Ticket $28. Show only $23. Children under 15 $22. Evening performance and dinner from 5:30 to 6:40 p.m. Curtain at 6:45 p.m. Ticket $30. Show only $25. Call 501-562-3131 for more information.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Summer camps at Wildwood Park

Summer fun at Wildwood Park starts with a summer camp meet and greet/open house on
May 26, from 3:30 to 6:30 p.m.
The open house offers an opportunity to learn more about fun and enriching summer camps, meet camp teachers and staff and ask questions before and signing up.
Summer camps include Summer Sweets and Treats from June 13 to June 17, 9 a.m. to 12 p.m., for rising first through fifth graders.
Join Wildwood on a literature based journey into the wonderful world of Willy Wonka. Students will have the "sweetest" arts experience ever through music, art, drama and hands-on culinary experiences.
Registration Fee: $50
Session Fee: $100
Wildwood Park Family Members: $90
Another camp, Go West Young People is from June 27 through July 1, 9 a.m. through 12 p.m., for rising first through fifth graders.
Experience an arts filled journey to the world and life of early American pioneers. Gather around a campfire to learn how pioneers cooked in the wild outdoors, and learn about the lives of pioneer children using historical facts and artistic creativity.
Registration Fee: $50
Session Fee: $100
Wildwood Park Family Members: $90
Camp Wildwood is from June 20 to July 1, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., for campers age 11 through 14.
A new summer experience is waiting for middle school students at Camp Wildwood. Through sessions in a variety of art forms from yoga, and performing arts to culinary, visual and horticulture, students will explore talents and develop new ones.
Registration Fee: $50
Session Fee: $450
Wildwood Family Members Fee: $405
Troupe d' Jour's Midsummer Shakespeare Camp from August 9 through August 13, 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., for rising second through eighth graders.
Students will improve their skills in the areas of: acting, movement, voice, diction, focus, text analysis, stage combat, ensemble and performance.
Session Fee: $295
For more camp info contact Judi Casavechia, Wildwood Park for the Arts Educational Programs Coordinator at judi@wildwoodpark.org.

Week at a glance

May 23
Designing Women at the Coronado Center at noon.
Village Insurance at the Coronado Center at 2 p.m.
May 24
NARFE Chapter 1368 at 5:30 p.m. at the Coronado Center.
Phantom C Dancers at 7:30 p.m. at the Coronado Center.
NETworks presents Disney’s Beauty and the Beast at Robinson Center Music Hall, 426 West Markham in Little Rock, at 7:30 p.m.
Always Patsy Cline at Murry’s Dinner Playhouse in Little Rock, 6323 Col. Glenn Road. Dinner 6 to 7:35 p.m. Curtain 7:45 p.m. Ticket $28. Show only $23. Children under 15 $22. Call 501-562-3131 for more information.
May 25
Chinese Brush at 9 a.m. at the Coronado Center.
Dr. McConnell of Saline Memorial at noon at the Coronado Center.
Village Insurance at 2 p.m. at the Coronado Center.
The Computer Club at 6 p.m. at the Coronado Center.
Sceptics at 7 p.m. at the Coronado Center.
A Team at 7:30 p.m. at the Coronado Center.
The Aluminum Show, modern dance and visuals, at Robinson Center Music Hall, 426 West Markham in Little Rock, at 7:30 p.m.
Always Patsy Cline at Murry’s Dinner Playhouse in Little Rock, 6323 Col. Glenn Road. Dinner 6 to 7:35 p.m. Curtain 7:45 p.m. Ticket $28. Show only $23. Children under 15 $22. Call 501-562-3131 for more information.
May 26
The Kiwanis at 8 a.m. at the Coronado Center.
The Genealogical Society at 1 p.m. at the Coronado Center.
HSV Police Department meeting at 2:30 p.m. at the Coronado Center.
HSV Area Chamber of Commerce meeting at 4 p.m. at the Coronado Center.
DeSoto Dancers at 7:30 p.m.
The Aluminum Show, modern dance and visuals, at Robinson Center Music Hall, 426 West Markham in Little Rock, at 1 and 7:30 p.m.
Always Patsy Cline at Murry’s Dinner Playhouse in Little Rock, 6323 Col. Glenn Road. Dinner 6 to 7:35 p.m. Curtain 7:45 p.m. Ticket $28. Show only $23. Children under 15 $22. Call 501-562-3131 for more information.
May 27
Brush Strokes at 9 a.m. at the Coronado Center.
Always Patsy Cline at Murry’s Dinner Playhouse in Little Rock, 6323 Col. Glenn Road. Dinner 6 to 7:35 p.m. Curtain 7:45 p.m. Ticket $32. Show only $27. Children under 15 $22. Call 501-562-3131 for more information.
May 28
Always Patsy Cline at Murry’s Dinner Playhouse in Little Rock, 6323 Col. Glenn Road. Dinner 6 to 7:35 p.m. Curtain 7:45 p.m. Ticket $32. Show only $27. Children under 15 $22. Call 501-562-3131 for more information.
May 29
Always Patsy Cline at Murry’s Dinner Playhouse in Little Rock, 6323 Col. Glenn Road. Lunch 11 a.m. to 12:40 p.m. Curtain 12:45 p.m. Ticket $28. Show only $23. Children under 15 $22. Evening performance and dinner from 5:30 to 6:40 p.m. Curtain at 6:45 p.m. Ticket $30. Show only $25. Call 501-562-3131 for more information.

Muses luncheon

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Moonlight and Magnolias coming to the Central

The Arkansas Theatre Works presents the comedy Moonlight and Magnolias by Ron Hutchinson at the Central Theatre in Hot Springs.
Show times are as follows:
Wednesday, June 22, 7:30 p.m.
Thursday, June 23, 7:30 p.m.
Friday, June 24, 8 p.m.
Saturday, June 25, 8 p.m.
Sunday, June 26, 2 p.m.
Wednesday, June 29, 7:30 p.m.
Thursday, June 30, 7:30 p.m.
Friday, July 1, 8 p.m.
Saturday, July 2, 8 p.m.
Sunday, July 3, 2 p.m.
The Central Theatre is at 1008 Central Ave, Hot Springs, AR 71901.
Tickets are $22.50 and up with subscriber pricing available.
For reservations, call 501-922-6899 or reserve seating online at www.arktwks.org.
Moonlight and Magnolias is the farcical version of the last-minute panicked rewrite of the entire movie script for Gone With the Wind.
The production features Tom Cooper of Royal, Arkansas, as the legendary producer David O. Selznick. Jack Iafrate of Hot Springs Village will appear as famed screenwriter Ben Hecht. Brian Williams of Benton stars as the formidable director Victor Fleming. Kassie Johnsen of Hot Springs will be the secretary, Miss Poppenghul.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Follow inmate information online

Garland County Jail Inmate Roster now Online

Sheriff Larry Sanders announced the long awaited implementation of the Online Jail Inmate Roster. Anyone can now go online and see bond information, photos and charges on incarcerated persons. Sign up on the VINE system to be notified when someone you are concerned about is released. It is a new feature included to help keep the public a little safer.

Visit the website at http://www.garlandcountysheriff.com and click on the Inmate Roster link at the top right, under the "Newest Additions" section.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Rain in the picture today

There is a 60-percent chance of rain and thunderstorms today increasing to 90-percent tonight. The storms are projected to move into the Hot Springs Village area around 11 a.m.

Piano Man this weekend


This weekend at the Robinson Center Music Hall the Arkansas Symphony Orchestra presents Piano Man, Jim Witter. The concerts are Saturday, May 21 at 8 p.m. and Sunday, May 22 at 3 p.m. The concert will be conducted by Geoffrey Robson. Tickets are $20 - $65.

Whether it be his country music, contemporary Christian, or the music of Billy Joel and Elton John, Witter’s versatility as an artist has allowed him the opportunity to reach out and share his music and his infectious personality with audiences of all ages across Canada and the United States. His unique approach and comfortable rapport makes each member of his audience feel as though they are a part of a private concert in the comfort of their own living room. This, along with his rich, powerful voice and ease of manner at the piano, make him a favourite with theatre goers everywhere.

It all started at a very early age, as Witter began performing in the comfort of his own living room. His Mother would play piano, and he would belt out the hits, everything from the Beatle’s to Broadway musicals. Not bad for a four year old! All through his school years, Witter knew that he was destined to have a career in the music business. “I never really thought of doing anything else”, he says, “and neither did my parents because they always encouraged me to follow my dream”.

And follow it he did. Witter paid his dues, playing in the clubs and bars around Southern Ontario for years. He would write songs and record demos during the day, and play in the clubs at night to pay the bills. He met his wife Rebecca in 1985. Together, they worked tirelessly to promote Witter’s talent and music in hopes that one day their efforts would be recognized. Finally in 1990, one of his demos came to the attention of a Sony Music Canada executive, which really got Witter’s recording career rolling. A record deal with a smaller independent label in Canada, soon gave way to a multi-record deal with Curb Records of Nashville, home of Tim McGraw, Leanne Rimes and Wynonna Judd. From his first self titled record, to “All My Life” and “Forgiveness”, Witter has had 10 top ten radio hits in Canada, 7 hit videos on CMT, and impressive chart action in the U.S. on Billboard and R&R.

Witter’s music and songwriting have been recognized on both sides of the border, earning him multiple awards and nominations from the Canadian Country Music Association, the Juno Awards, and most recently the Dove Awards in Nashville, where his album “Forgiveness” was nominated for Inspirational Album of the year. “Songwriting has always been a real love of mine”, says Witter. “I feel very fortunate to have been able to work with so many incredible song-writers over the past years, like Steve Wariner for instance. Not only have the collaborations produced songs that I am very proud of, but I have gained an invaluable education and created lifelong friendships along the way.”

A few years ago, Witter came up with the concept for the show “The Piano Men”; a musical journey through the 70’s featuring the songs of Billy Joel and Elton John. "I was always a big fan of acoustic music-especially the folk of the ‘70s: James Taylor, Harry Chapin," he reveals, "but my real mentors were Billy Joel and Elton John." This multi-media rock musical has turned out to be a hit, receiving rave reviews from music critics all across North America. There are even plans to take the show overseas to London and Japan in the near future.

Witter still lives in Southern Ontario with his wife, Rebecca, and their four children, James, Roslyn, Ryan and Luke. A devoted family man, he is also very active in his community, supporting numerous charities and organizations, especially those which benefit children and their families. “All I’ve ever wanted from this business is to be able to support my family and to make people feel a little better when they hear my music. To help them forget about their troubles for a while and enjoy the moment”, he concludes. “If I can continue doing this 5, 10, 15 years down the road, I’ll be perfectly happy.”

Fallen Heroes Memorial

Today is the last day to view the Fallen Heroes Memorial on Highway 7 next to El Padrino's. It will be packed up first thing tomorrow morning and move on to another area of the state.

2.4 outside of Guy yesterday

Yesterday around noon there was another little earthquake in the Guy area of Faulkner County, Arkansas. This one was a 2.4.
There are thousands of little earthquakes around the world each day but this area in Arkansas, about 200 miles from the New Madrid Fault, has been especially active over the last two years.

Help clean up the Heifer Ranch this weekend

Saturday, May 21 at 9 a.m. go to the Heifer Ranch in Perryville, Arkansas to help clean up from the severe weather late last month.

The Heifer Ranch is holding a community work day and celebration to continue with the clean-up efforts from the April 25 storms, and to thank the community and volunteers for their dedication to restoring the Ranch.

Come ready to work and take part in this special celebration. Lunch will be provided free of charge. Please RSVP so that we can provide enough food. Anyone interested should call the Ranch at (501) 889-5124 if they plan to come or if they need more information.

March 19 press release from Sen. Mark Pryor

WASHINGTON D.C. – U.S. Senator Mark Pryor today said an alarming report released this week about the safety of imported seafood underscores the need to enhance seafood oversight and inspections.

“Arkansas catfish farmers go to great lengths to ensure that the catfish we enjoy at the dinner table is safe and affordable,” Pryor said. “This report confirms that foreign producers are not as careful and it underscores the need to step up our standards and inspections of foreign seafood.”

Pryor said the report, Seafood Safety: FDA Needs to Improve Oversight of Imported Seafood and Better Leverage Limited Resources, criticizes the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) efforts to adequately inspect imported seafood. It cites weak inspection techniques, such as reviewing records instead of visiting foreign aquaculture farms or laboratories to ensure that U.S. safety standards are met. Additionally, it said the FDA does not generally test for drugs that can cause cancer and antibiotic resistance. In 2009, the FDA tested only about 0.1% of all imported seafood products for drug residues.

Pryor believes the GAO findings underscore the need to move forward with a requirement in the 2008 Farm Bill that moves catfish inspection from FDA to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. The USDA is currently undergoing the rulemaking process and will determine whether or not all catfish undergo USDA’s food safety inspection procedures. Pryor is encouraging growers and consumers to comment on the proposed rule before June 24th.

“Rigorous inspections for all catfish, domestic and imported, should meet the highest safety standards. It is my hope USDA will side with consumers and make safety its highest priority,” Pryor said.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Last week of Plaza Suite

The last of week of Neil Simon's Plaza Suite starring Villagers Sandy Johansen and Jack Larsen starts today. Plaza Suite, directed by Rebecca Manion is at the Pocket Community Theatre on Ravine Street in Hot Springs.

Remaining Performance Dates:
May 19-21, 2011 at 7:30 p.m.
May 22, 2011 at 2:30 p.m.

Ticket Price:
General Admission: $10
Through grade 12: $5

Village police statistics for April

Offenses - month / 2011 year to date / 2010 year to date
Battery - 0 / 2 / 1
Breaking or entering - 0 / 5 / 3
Burglary - 2 / 6 / 8
Criminal mischief - 3 / 8 / 11
Felony arrest - 0 / 1 / 3
Felony arrest warrant - 1 / 3 / 7
Fraud - 1 / 7 / 5
Other felony complaint - 0 / 3 / 3
Off property arrest - 0 / 1 / 2
Rape - 0 / 0 / 0
Robbery - 0 / 0 / 0
Explosion - 0 / 0 / 0
Cutting - 0 / 0 / 0
Shooting - 0 / 0 / 0
Murder - 0 / 0 / 1
Suicide - 1 / 2 / 2
Terroristic threatening - 1 / 1 / 3
Theft over $500 - 4 / 11 / 9
Theft under $500 - 5 / 11 / 12
Animal Complaint - 9 / 33 / 55
Disorderly conduct - 0 / 0 / 0
Disturbance - 2 / 26 / 34
DWI arrest - 1 / 3 / 2
Harassment - 0 / 5 / 10
Harassing communication - 3 /13 /6
Littering - 0 / 1 / 8
Misdemeanor arrest warrant - 0 / 8 / 3
Misdemeanor citation arrest - 4 / 10 / 34
Other misdemeanor complaint - 0 / 2 / 2
Fire code violations - 0 / 0 / 0
Lake violations - 3 / 5 / 4
Policy violations - 15 / 65 / 45
Accidents - month / 2011 year to date / 2010 year to date
Traffic accident - 3 / 20 / 26
Boat accident - 0 / 0 / 0
Traffic accident deer - 1 / 13 / 11
Traffic accident fatality - 0 / 0 / 0
Accident with injury - 4 / 6 / 9
Traffic accident private property - 6 / 14 / 17
Services - month / 2011 year to date / 2010 year to date
911 hang up - 11 / 27 / 47
Assist Garland County - 4 / 18 / 26
Assist medical - 137 / 576 / 541
Assist HSVFD - 5 / 16 / 22
Assist other law enforcement - 3 / 11 / 22
Death - 5 / 25 / 26
False alarm - 18 / 34 / 31
Found property - 8 / 25 / 32
Keep the peace - 0 / 5 / 9
Lost property - 0 / 5 / 6
Open door - 14 / 33 / 41
Open gate - 11 / 35 / 35
Off property call - 6 / 32 / 27
Other police service - 66 / 188 / 258
Public assist - 14 / 37 / 49
Scam, attempted - 6 / 18 / 20
Suspicious circumstance - 25 / 95 / 90
Traffic complaint - 25 / 104 / 102
Welfare check - 37 / 72 / 46
Total - 465 / 1,641 / 1,766

Village fire department statistics for April

Response category / April / 2011 year to date / 2010 year to date
Structure fire - 3 / 4 / 1
Chimney fire - 0 / 0 / 0
Cooking fire - 0 / 0 / 3
False alarm - 2 / 3 / 2
Smoke scare, no fire - 1 / 7 / 7
Vehicle fire - 0 / 2 / 0
Wildland fire - 1 / 1 / 7
Carbon dioxide alarm - 0 / 2 / 2
Rekindle of fire - 0 / 0 / 0
Warming barrel abuse - 0 / 1 / 0
Other, good intent - 11 / 17 / 10
Hazardous material - 1 / 1 / 0
Electrical call - 1 / 10 / 20
Medical assist for EMS - 7 / 24 / 15
Mutual aid to fire call - 0 / 2 /3
CAD test - 0 / 0 / 0
Total alarms answered - 27 / 74 / 70
Average men per call - 3.81 / 1.84 / 3/51
Responses by station area of coverage:
Station / Month / Year to date
DeSoto / 8 / 16
Cortez / 7 / 21
Balboa / 10 / 19
Coronado / 1 / 10
Off property / 1 / 9
Total / 27 /74
Responses by shift:
Shift / captain / month / year to date
A / Seibert / 5 / 22
B / Fallen / 7 / 20
C / Miller / 15 / 32
During April firefighters were drilled in firefighter EMS self-defense and ventilation.

April animal control statistics

April / 2011 year to date / 2010 year to date
Animal call outs - 87 / 322 / 511
Animal intake - 57 / 148 / 247
Animal disposition
AWL - 28 / 63 / 92
Adopted - 0 / 1 / 2
Euthanasia - 8 / 29 / 51
Returned to owner - 8 / 30 / 23
Died - 0 / 0 / 0
Escaped - 0 / 0 / 0
Stolen - 0 / 0 / 0
DOA - 4 / 26 / 70
Returned to wild - 0 / 0 / 7
Nine animals remained in animal control care for May, 2011.

Developer's Finance turning ove assessment collection to POA

Developer’s Finance, a mortgage holder for more than 250 Village property owners, has made a payment on behalf of all its mortgagees making each property owner current on assessment payments.
Developer's Finance has also ceased collecting POA assessments as part of escrow, turning information over to the POA enabling direct billing and direct collection of assessments from the property owners on a monthly basis.
The vast majority of the property owners involved were current on assessment payments, but the mortgage holder was often slow to pay. The change won’t significantly improve the POA's annual assessment collections but it will improve cash flow.

Noles new public works director

Randy Noles was promoted to director of public works. Noles has worked for the POA for more than 21 years. For the past three months Noles has served as co-director along with Dennis Eskew. Noles' appointment was effective immediately.

Yesterday's POA board meeting

The POA board meeting started yesterday with a proclamation recognizing the Village Pines Garden Club for its good works around the Village. Anne Inloes represented the club. National Garden Week is June 5 through 11.

Board Director Jim Owens congratulated Randy Noles on his recent appointment to the Director of Public Works position. Director Mike Misch said that State Senator Jason Rapert recently spoke in Hot Springs Village and commended the Governmental Affairs Committee for their Legislative Luncheon held at the capitol. Director John Cooney encouraged all Hot Springs Village residents to make time to go by the Fallen Heroes Memorial on Highway 7. Director Tom Bryant commented on the recent Saline County Courthouse Day in Hot Springs Village and was disappointed that more residents did not turn out. He encouraged resident to get out and meet our county officials when they take the time to come to Hot Springs Village.

General manager Scott Randall told the board Randy Noles had accepted the public works director's position and Noles is already bringing fresh ideas to the table. Randall also thanked water/wastewater superintendent Dennis Eskew for his contributions as co-interim public works director during the last three months.

Randall said over 300 homes were damaged in the April 25 tornado that moved through Hot Springs Village, with 175 homes sustaining significant damage, nine commercial businesses and two churches were also damaged. The federal government issued a disaster declaration on May 2. The declaration entitles residents with building damages to apply for assistance from the Federal Emergency Management Agency, FEMA. Applicants have until July 2 to apply for assistance. FEMA will be offering a short term disaster recovery center in Hot Springs Village, but a location has not yet been determined.

Randall said that right-of-way cleanup is 50-percent complete, common property cleanup is less than 50-percent complete; and golf courses are more than 80-percent complete. The POA will begin mulching storm debris at the old gravel pit on Tuesday. To date storm clean up costs are approximately $155,000 of which insurance has covered $110,000. The POA will make application to its insurance company first for reimbursement, then FEMA, and will then have to bear any costs not covered by either.

Director Jim Owens made a motion to reappoint Don Langston as chairman of the lakes and water committee. It passed.

Director Tom Bryant made a motion to reappoint Bill Monson as chairman of the public works committee. It passed.

The timber sale contract for phase 8 forest management plan was approved. The bid of Gill Logging to complete phase 8 of the tree thinning project should generate approximately $100,152 in revenue.

The next meeting of the POA board is scheduled for June 1 at 9 a.m. in the Ouchita room of the Ponce de Leon Center.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

POA board meets today

POA board meeting this morning in the Ouachita room at 9 a.m. The meeting is open to all POA members.

EMS week parade today

It is time for the annual parade of lights today at 10 a.m. in Little Rock. Ambulance services, police departments, motorcycle escorts, fire and rescue trucks and other first-responder vehicles from across the state will have lights and sirens on. This is a cooperative effort of the Arkansas Department of Health Emergency Medical Services (EMS) section, the Arkansas Ambulance Association, the Arkansas Emergency Medical Technicians Association and private EMS companies in Arkansas.

The parade of lights will be followed by a special honors ceremony during which one minute of silence will be observed to honor the contributions of the men and women of EMS. Special recognition for this year’s Arkansas “Stars of Life” and other state EMS leaders.

The parade starts at War Memorial Stadium, east side parking lot, then proceeds on Markham to the state Capitol building, ending at Capitol and Wood Lane, in front of the Capitol.

A reception will follow at Freeway Medical Center, 5800 West 10th Street, Suite 800, LR, 72204. If you have any questions or need directions please contact the EMS Section at 501-661-2262.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Adopt a pet from the HSV Animal Shelter

Flower, Panda and Freckles are friendly spayed and neutered kitties. The trio is looking for good homes.
Cheetah is about a three year old, spayed female. Cheetah loves attention.
Chance is about a year old neutered male. Chance is playful and would make a great companion.
Jazz and G. I Joe are still looking for homes. Jazz is a two to three year old spayed female Labrador mix with a nice personality. G. I Joe is a two to three year old neutered male Sheppard mix. G. I. Joe is friendly but protective. To see pics of the two dogs, enter each name in the search field above.

St. Joe's jumping jacks

St. Joseph's Mercy co-workers have pledged to do more than 270,000 jumping jacks tomorrow as part of National Employee Health and Fitness Day. Mercy co-workers in Arkansas, Missouri, Oklahoma and Kansas will attempt to do 1 million jumping jacks all together. The video promoting the event features Hot Springs' M.C. Spookytooth. Watch it at www.mercy.net/jumpingjacks. Employees will do their jumping jacks in mass at 10:30 a.m. on Wednesday, May 18 at St. Joseph's Mercy in Hot Springs, 300 Werner Street. This could make for some amazing visuals. Stop by the hospital and enjoy the jumping jacks.

Willy Wonka, Jr. ticket sales

The HSV Players in cooperation with Jessieville School will present a children's workshop with the finale, a presentation of the show Willy Wonka, Jr.
Tickets for the production are $5.00 for non-reserved seating. The tickets will be sold at the Woodlands box office starting May 23. There will be two performances of Willy Wonka, Jr., June 17 at 7 p.m. and June 18 at 2 p.m.
The Players are looking for volunteers to sell tickets in the box office the weeks of May 23, May 30, June 6 and June 13. Box office shifts are from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and from 12:30 to 4 p.m.
Volunteers call Jackie at 915-0818 or Judy at 922-6750.

Message from Congressman Mike Ross

By now, we’ve all felt the pain at the pump as gas prices continue to rise. These rising gas prices not only affect us at the pump, but they also affect many other parts of our economy from rising food prices to decreased tourism revenue for many of our communities and small businesses. Moreover, the instability of gas prices – the constant rise and fall – weakens consumer confidence and slows our economic recovery.

If America is going to forge through this economic recovery, we’ve got to have a stable and affordable supply of energy. One of the ways we can accomplish this goal is to drill more here at home. Drilling more won’t lower the price of fuel right away, but it will help create long-term stability in the price of oil here at home.

Over the past two weeks, the U.S. House of Representatives has considered several pieces of legislation addressing domestic drilling. On May 5th, I voted for and the House passed the bipartisan Restarting American Offshore Leasing Now Act, H.R. 1230, requiring the Secretary of the Interior to conduct oil and natural gas lease sales in the Gulf of Mexico and offshore Virginia that have been delayed or cancelled by the White House.

On May 11th, I voted for and the House passed the bipartisan Putting the Gulf Back to Work Act, H.R. 1229, which improves safety standards and calls for the White House to streamline the approval process for drilling permits in the Gulf of Mexico.

Then, again on May 11th, I voted for and the House passed the Reversing President Obama’s Offshore Moratorium Act, H.R. 1231, which lifts the President’s ban on new offshore drilling by requiring the White House to move forward on American energy production in areas containing the most oil and natural gas resources. The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO) estimates this bill alone would generate $800 million in revenue over 10 years.

Combined, all three of these bills – H.R. 1229, H.R. 1230 and H.R. 1231 – could create 250,000 short-term jobs and 1.2 million long-term jobs, according to Dr. Joseph Mason, economist and professor at Louisiana State University.

I am also convinced that amid rising gas prices and billion dollar profits by major oil corporations, it is past time to end the tax breaks – financed by taxpayers – that essentially act as subsidies for big oil companies. That’s why earlier this month, I also voted for a procedural motion, which failed, to consider the Big Oil Welfare Repeal Act. This bill would have repealed the Section 199 domestic manufacturing tax deduction for the largest oil corporations, saving taxpayers $12.8 billion over the next decade, according to the CBO. Our fiscal crisis requires a shared sacrifice and this money could be used to pay down our deficit. If we’re asking every agency, including the Department of Defense, to cut back, then I think it’s only fair we ask the big oil corporations to do the same and end these taxpayer-funded breaks.

Finally, I was proud to also introduce a bill – the American-Made Energy Act of 2011, H.R. 1682 – that focuses on American-made energy by drilling more here at home and then using the lease and royalty revenues from the drilling to make the single largest investment in the history of our country in alternative and renewable energies. We’ve depended on foreign oil for far too long and my bill takes one of the biggest first steps to energy independence and lower fuel prices.

We simply cannot ignore the reality that our way of life continues to depend on affordable oil, gasoline and diesel, but we also can’t ignore the reality that they are limited resources. Drilling more alone will not solve all of our problems nor will it meet our long-term energy needs. We need to explore all forms of energy and invest in new technologies if we are to ever make this country truly energy independent. As your Congressman, I will continue working with both Democrats and Republicans to address our nation’s energy crisis and to stabilize the long-term price of energy.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Week at a glance

Today
Arkansas Fallen Heroes Memorial on Highway 7 next to El Padrino’s honoring 115 Arkansan servicemen and women that have died in the Global War on Terror.

May 17
POA trail committee meets at the Coronado Center at 1:30 p.m. This meeting is open to all POA members.

Arkansas Fallen Heroes Memorial on Highway 7 next to El Padrino’s honoring 115 Arkansan servicemen and women that have died in the Global War on Terror.

May 18
Village POA board meets in the Ouachita room of the Ponce de Leon Center at 9 a.m. The meeting is open to all POA members.

Arkansas Fallen Heroes Memorial on Highway 7 next to El Padrino’s honoring 115 Arkansan servicemen and women that have died in the Global War on Terror.

May 19
Cooper’s architectural control committee meets at 8:30 a.m. at the POA administration building.

Arkansas Fallen Heroes Memorial on Highway 7 next to El Padrino’s honoring 115 Arkansan servicemen and women that have died in the Global War on Terror.

The POA’s public works committee meets at 9:30 at the Coronado Center. This meeting is open to all POA members.

Neil Simon’s Plaza Suite at the Pocket Theatre in Hot Springs. Directed by Liz Turner.

May 20
Neil Simon’s Plaza Suite at the Pocket Theatre in Hot Springs. Directed by Liz Turner.

Arkansas Fallen Heroes Memorial on Highway 7 next to El Padrino’s honoring 115 Arkansan servicemen and women that have died in the Global War on Terror.

May 21
Armed Forces Day.

Neil Simon’s Plaza Suite at the Pocket Theatre in Hot Springs. Directed by Liz Turner.

The Piano Man presented by the Arkansas Symphony Orchestra at the Robinson Center Music Hall at 8 p.m. Geoffrey Robson conducting. Featuring Jim Witter on piano. Witter performs tunes of Billy Joel and Elton John.

Alice in Wonderland, a full-length storybook ballet at the Arkansas Arts Center Children’s Theatre, Little Rock today at 2 p.m. and tonight at 7:30 p.m.

May 22
National Maritime Day.

Neil Simon’s Plaza Suite at the Pocket Theatre in Hot Springs. Directed by Liz Turner.

The Piano Man presented by the Arkansas Symphony Orchestra at the Robinson Center Music Hall at 3 p.m. Geoffrey Robson conducting. Featuring Jim Witter on piano. Witter performs tunes of Billy Joel and Elton John.

Alice in Wonderland, a full-length storybook ballet at the Arkansas Arts Center Children’s Theatre, Little Rock today at 2 p.m.

Today is Saline County Courthouse at Ouachita Building

Center in the Ouachita Activities Building, 1101 DeSoto Blvd., from 9:00 a.m. until 3:00 p.m. to bring the Saline County Courthouse to Hot Springs Village for the day.

County officials scheduled to be in Hot Springs Village are: County Judge Lanny Fite, County Clerk Freddy Burton, Circuit Clerk Dennis Milligan, Tax Collector Joy Ballard, Tax Assessor Jim Crawford, Sheriff Bruce Pennington, Coroner Will Bearden, Prosecuting Attorney Ken Casady, Treasurer Sandra McPherson, First Division Circuit Judge Bobby McCallister, Second Division Circuit Judge Gary Arnold, representatives from the Office of Emergency Management, and the district represenative from Congressman Tim Griffin's office.

Additionally, staff members from many of their offices will be on hand to help answer questions. The Office of Emergency Management will be distributing NOAA Weather Radios to people living in Hot Springs Village and will be there to answer questions about the recovery from the recent storms, tornadoes and floods. Information will also be available on rebates for building a storm shelter or safe room.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

The Arkansas Fallen Heroes Memorial

The Arkansas Fallen Heroes Memorial honoring the servicemen that have died in the Global War on terror was created by Rob Hopper of Wynne, Arkansas. Hopper lost his son, Brian Chase Hopper, in Iraq. He is trying to raise funds for a permanent home for the Fallen Heroes Memorial. It will take $250,000. Hopper has raised half.
Volunteers from the Rotary Club of Scenic 7 are staffing the memorial to take donations. The goal is to have a permanent home for the memorial at the Arkansas Military Museum in Jacksonville. The memorial will be in Hot Springs Village for one week.
There are 115 flags representing 115 fallen servicemen saluted in the Arkansas Fallen Heroes Memorial.















The unveiling of the Fallen Heroes Memorial is at hand

The motorcycle escort ended at the property managed by Jim Davis adjacent to El Padrino's. Electricity for the night time lights is provided by El Padrino's. The memorial is just a crunch past Walgreens. Everyone was ready to view the memorial.



I love a parade

Rotarians Amanda Kennedy and Charles Williams of the Rotary Club of Scenic 7, coordinated the motorcycle parade escorting the Arkansas Fallen Heroes Memorial through Hot Springs Village.
Several people watched from the Veterans Memorial at the Ponce de Leon Center. There were also groups of people at several intersections lining DeSoto Boulevard welcoming the motorcycles.













Saturday, May 14, 2011

Preparing for the parade for Fallen Heroes

Last February, Rotarian Charles Williams, a member of the Rotary Club of Scenic 7, suggested the club bring the Arkansas Fallen Heroes Memorial honoring Arkansas servicemen that have died in the Global War on Terror to the Village. The membership agreed it was a great idea.
A committee of four was formed to take care of the details bringing the memorial to the Village and in addition they created a motorcycle escort winding its way through the Village.
Yesterday morning at 11 a.m. the parade started at Mountainside United Methodist Church and covered the distance of DeSoto Boulevard on its way from the east gate and out the west gate to the property adjacent to El Padrino's.
The temporary memorial is on property managed by Jim Davis' and the members of the Rotary Club of Scenic 7 are thankful for his donation of the land for the week the memorial is here.