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Saturday, August 29, 2015

Deadly car accident in Village.

Chief Ricky Middleton of the Hot Springs Village Police Department announced a fatality accident occurred on Friday, August 28 in Hot Springs Village. At 10:22 p.m. officers responded to Balearic Road near the RV Campsite Road to a report of a single car accident. The victim was 67 year old Lynda J. Bounsall of Hot Springs Village.

Garland County Coroner Stuart Smedley arrived at the accident site and pronounced Ms. Bounsall as deceased.

Hot Springs Village Fire Department also assisted at the scene.

Thursday, August 27, 2015

More fun at the Five Star Theater

Yakov Smirnoff is now appearing at the Five Star Theater in Hot Springs. Audience members came out in droves to see the Russian comedian last night. He doesn’t look much different from the Smirnoff we remember from the 70's, 80's and 90's when he was a favorite on The Tonight Show, the movies, television and the comedy club circuits.

Smirnoff’s mastery of the English language and all of its foibles was and is still fodder for his hilarious brand of comedy. The things we loved about him then are still there but now Smirnoff has morphed into a favorite college professor, one that teaches life’s lessons with a laugh. The class that always has a wait list. The professor whose message you always remember.

Smirnoff’s admitted goal is to make his audiences happy and he succeeds beyond reason. Lesson one, the word yep translates to the word sex in Russian and who can’t laugh every time you hear yep in perverse context.

Lesson two, to sustain a successful relationship you must give gift, an acronym for give, importance, fun, time. The lecture was enjoyable, the lesson will be remembered and hopefully implemented.

Smirnoff talked of his family and shared many sentimental stories. There were lots of laughs but also damp eyes. Be prepared to laugh and cry, ponder love and life.

When not trying out new material on the road, Smirnoff has a theater in Branson where he continues to perform but he also has pursued education. In 2006 he returned to college and received his Masters in Psychology from the University of Pennsylvania. Today, at age 64, he is pursuing his Ph.D. in the neuroscience of laughter, this from a man that came to America 37 years ago not speaking a word of English. He is the American dream.

Smirnoff will be bringing his philosophy and humor to the Five Star Theater in Hot Springs tonight, Saturday night and an added Sunday matinee at 3 p.m. For reservations, call 318-1600.

Saturday, August 22, 2015

Loved the show at the Five Star last night in Hot Springs

Annie and I had an opportunity to attend the George Dyer concert at the Five Star Dinner Theater last night and it was fun.  Both of us have extensive musical backgrounds and we enjoy hearing musicians new to us and kicking around what we thought of the performance.

We were both glowing with satisfaction as we left the Five Star last night. George Dyer, his wife Clarisse and his daughter Kassidy gave a high-energy, non-stop performance that we both thoroughly enjoyed. Dyer came to us from Branson. He regularly performs at the Dutton Theater there. A polished professional with a family first flair.

In Branson you get the five piece band experience. At Five Star it was canned music but after the first few strains of music and the forceful personality of Dyer you completely forget about the computer driven accompaniment. All of his accompaniment is perfect for Dyer, musical keys that enhance his full tenor voice verging on baritone. The repertoire matches his vocal range and keeps the show moving.

His show ran the gamut of big band tunes, Broadway, opera and patriotic. He got a breather when his wife and daughter took the stage.  One of my favorite female-Dyer pieces was the female duet from Lakme, The Flower duet. Clarisse’s soprano and Kassidy’s alto tones filled the air with pure beauty.

Dyer doesn’t shy from getting out in the audience and interacting with the crowd. Annie was mortified, but I thought it was a nice touch. He tends to sparkle when he sings and that’s not a bad thing. Dyer is just as at home with a contemporary love ballad as with a centuries old aria. His duets with his wife were a nice break from his solo deliveries. His breath control was stronger than hers but that didn’t present a problem.

Of course, I loved the opera part of the evening best of all. For you non-opera musical types, this was just one of several components of the show, a nice exposure to popular tenor arias without putting the neophyte to sleep. To me, it wasn’t until La donne e mobile that Dyer’s true voice began to soar and you could appreciate his top notes.

Dyer’s patriotic section of the show used modulation to kick up the excitement level in the theater.  He also did not hesitate to have the audience sing along and become invested in the show.

There were lots of women in the audience, a few men. After all, Dyer is a handsome man that doesn’t hesitate to show off his flirting skills. Everyone jumped to their feet in appreciation of Dyer’s opera section and his finale. Even the men had a good time. Overall it was a very good show.

If you take in the Dyer show in Branson, you may catch more of the Dyer family. His sons Mitchell and Garrett and his other daughter Kendra perform with the show when life allows.

Dyer will be back at the Five Star Dinner Theater in Hot Springs tonight. If you would like tickets, call 318-1600. I give the show my all out recommendation. There is something for everyone, good show.

Thursday, August 6, 2015

Boys and Girls Club in financial trouble

Despite the fact Paul Bewie Boys and Girls Club director Dennis Brown declared yesterday in an on-air interview with KVRE morning host Tracy Simpson, "the Boys and Girls Club will not re-open after its annual maintenance week because of a financial short fall," he still has a job.

Following an emergency board meeting last night, board president Scott DeBoer said Dennis Brown will be staying on with the club. DeBoer said "Brown has an impressive resume and was hired as a short term director bridging the gap and leading the way for a long term director with more energy."

Employees at the Paul Bewie Boys and Girls Club heard they no longer had a job over the radio. Yesterday several members of the staff walked out. Prospects looked gloomy.

But, following the emergency board meeting, DeBoer said, "we are in a significant financial pinch but we believe the club can go on. Realistically, we need $15,000 in the next couple of days, $35,000 to get us through September. We have good volunteers and a community that wants the club to succeed."

DeBoer said earlier in the day the staff has done a fantastic job with what they have but are hampered because the club cannot give them what they need to do the job.

DeBoer added the budget has significantly dropped over the past few years. The club needs more than just financial help, it needs to step up programming to do the best for the children.

DeBoer is confident the club will come up with the money it needs. The National Boys and Girls Club is sending a representative to meet with club officials today to investigate and give advice as to the direction to head.

This is not the first financial jam for the Paul Bewie Boys and Girls Club. The summer of 2012 the club found itself in similar circumstances. The staff had not been paid consistently. Survival was measured day by day.

In 1991, Bewie, then district governor with Kiwanis International and a resident of Hot Springs Village, saw a critical need for a safe place for children to go after school as their parents were still working. Bewie motivated dedicated parents, civic clubs, churches, business representatives, and local residents to join together in a cooperative effort to raise over one million dollars in cash and in-kind donations to create "The Positive Place for Children" in the North Garland County area. In the fall of 1991, 35 acres of land was purchased on Highway 7, just north of Hot Springs Village, and the North Garland County Youth Center was organized.

After affiliating with the Boys and Girls Club of America in 1994, it became the North Garland County Boys and Girls Club, the only rural club in the state of Arkansas. It was cited as the number one rural safe place for children after school in 1998 at the Arkansas Governor's state summit on volunteerism. Following Bewie's death in 2004, the name was changed to the Paul Bewie Boys and Girls Club. Today, the club's official name is the North Garland County Youth Center doing business as the Paul Bewie Boys and Girls Club.

To give today, call 984-6996 or see a club board member.