A Short History of
Prior to 1880, Hardy did not exist. Only a few families lived in this heavily timbered area, and not until the completion of the railroad did the boom times come. Thanks to the railroad, much was needed – a water tank to service locomotives, a station to take on and unload passengers and freight, housing for its employees, and various other services. The town of Hardy was officially founded in 1883, and was named for James A Hardy, Jr., a 25-year-old trackage subcontractor who saved his boss’s life.
In 1894, Hardy was made County Seat of Sharp County’s Northern District, with Evening Shade being County Seat of the Southern District. The present County Seat is Ash Flat, established when the two districts were combined in 1967.
Hardy’s population remained around 50 for the first 10 years of its existence; by 1900 the population had grown to about 600 residents.
The first substantial businesses were not established until the 1890’s and 1900’s. Those were the ‘general stores’ where you could find anything from food to pots and pans to hardware. By 1920, businesses occupied almost two blocks on Main Street. Those included general stores, hotels, general merchandise establishments a private telephone company, a Ford automobile agency, two cafes, a bank, two drug stores, two livery stables, a jewelry store, an ice plant, a feed store, two lumber companies, a wholesale grocer, a lovestock sale barn, and the Court House.
The life style in Hardy remained about the same until the late 1970’s. At that time, some businesses began to move out of town to other areas; however, what brought about the drastic change in Hardy was the flood of 1982. This devastating event flooded to the roof of the grocery store in town, and most of the other stores were badly damaged. After the flood, most of the businesses moved to the Highland area – and that’s when the craft and antique shops began to open in the historic buildings on Main Street.
Today, Hardy retains its ‘old town’ flavor. The downtown area looks much like it did during the Model-T days… and the merchants want to keep it that way! Most of the modern changes have occurred at the ends of town, leaving the heart of Main Street a tiny preserve for quality antique shops, craft stores, specialty shops and gift nooks. The cool, clear waters of Spring River, a favorite of tourists for decades, flow just one block off Main Street, offering swimming, excellent fishing, and canoeing.
The idea for the Old Hardy Town mural, located at the corner of Spring and Main Streets, came about when Kenneth King had a wish to konate something of lasting value to the town that had been so good to him and his family since he started his business in 1963. In the summer of 1992, in an effort to preserve a part of Hardy’s rapidly vanishing heritage, Mr. King commissioned two artists, Ernie Patton and Kermit Kroll, to paint a panorama of five long-gone landmarks on an outside brick wall. The mural is approximately 80 feet long and 23 feet high.
One of the five scenes depicted on the mural is the Frisco Railroad Depot which stood in Hardy from the 1920’s to the 1970’s. During those years, the depot served as a social gathering place and business location. On Sundays after chruch, young people would say, “Lets go to the station and watch the train come in.” Unfortunately, after the dwindling of rain service in the 1970s, the depot was razed and this brought regret to area residents.
Another of the landmarks pictured it the old gas station (Oct. 1, 1917 – July 13, 1973). The station was located between the railroad tracks and the Spring River bridge. This service station did more business than all other Hardy service stations combined. It weathered two bad floods, but the third one put it out of business.
The Old Iron Bridge spanned Spring River from the time it was built in 1916 until it was totally destroyed by the devastating flood in 1982. Untold numbers of wagons, people and cars made their way across the structure before it washed away. Truly a focal point of the area, generations of Hardyites had great pride in and affection for the old bridge. It had a simple grace and beauty that appealed to the eye and heart.
Wahpeton Hill, which is on the south side of Spring River opposite Hardy’s business district, was once wooded hills where Memphians came to enjoy the peace and quiet during the early part of the century. In the language of teh Indians, Wahpeton meant, “home among the leaves”. Below Wahpeton Hill, the fields along the river were the scene of annual Indian Olympic Games. In 1932, Judge Frank Guthrie bought Wahpeton Hill and several hundred acres. Mrs. Gutherie immediately started plans for the construction of Wahpeton Inn. The Inn was opened formally in the summer of 1933. It was built entirely of native stone; the floors of the lobby and living room and the outside terraces were made of flagstone. All the furniture except the beds were constructed of native oak. Much entertainment was offered: an orchestra, family sytle meals, coffee shop, bowling alley, shuffleboard court and a dance floor in the pavilion. The Inn was burned on November 13, 1939. Although much effort was expended in an attempt to save the beautiful inn, it burned to ashes and sadly was never rebuilt.
The Beck House was built in 1885 by John Elmer Beck, a railroad man from Springfield, Missiour. It was built of the finest materials and with elegant furnishings, many purchased in Memphis. Over the years, the Beck farm served as the center of community attractions. The riverside area provided a primitive golf course, and during the 1920’s and ’30s, the farm was the site of an annual circus that entertained the people from all over Norther Sharp County. Teresa Beck, one of the six children of John Beck, married a Mr. Donaldson, one of the Hardy’s depot agents. Mrs. Donaldson, affectionately known as “Aunt Tee”, loved int the house until her death in 1980. In 1992, the house was demolished because it had become too dilapidated to repair. Our “Bonanza” restaurant is near the site of the old house.
By Guest Columnist Naomi Johnson <[email protected]>
The past year has thrown unprecedented challenges at small business owners across the country. Although many businesses are finally able to reopen, the fight isn’t over just yet! Convincing customers to shop at your business may be tough, given that many people are still grappling with financial uncertainty and concerns about contracting COVID-19. (see attached for rest of the article.
Reopening Your Business_ Affordable Post-Pandemic Marketing Strategies 2.3.21
Resources for Adapting and Growing Your Business During the Pandemic
Submitted By Elena Stewart, [email protected]
As a small business owner, you’ve probably been struggling with the effects of the pandemic since the beginning, and you’re likely always evaluating what will be the next best move. Below, the Spring River Area Chamber of Commerce offers a few ways to help your employees, improve your store and adapt your business model to thrive in the new environment created by the pandemic.
Starting a New Business: When Necessity Knocks
Starting a new business requires time, patience, and planning. You may also need some freelancers to help you get your idea off the ground!
List your skills and ask where they are most needed.
File your business officially with the state; this also provides some legal protections for you.
Connect with the Spring River Area Chamber of Commerce.
Helping Your Employees
If you have been fortunate enough to retain your employees throughout the crisis, there are still many ways to support your staff as you consider reopening. These are a few things to keep in mind.
Include a flexible sick leave policy in your work handbook.
Make a social distancing plan for keeping employees safe in the workplace.
Better yet, let your employees start (or continue) working from home if possible.
If you have any remote employees, work hard on promoting a sense of belonging.
Improving Your Business
If you’ve cut back on your store hours or are still waiting to fully reopen, there are lots of things you can do now to improve your business.
Improve your signage or displays to increase foot traffic.
Put up signs or implement other safety measures to reassure customers.
Switching Your Approach
Even once infections rates slow down, the pandemic will probably leave a lasting impact on the ways we interact with one another. These ideas can help you keep up with the times and stay relevant.
Take the time to redesign your website so it’s more user-friendly.
Try to find a new angle for selling your products or services.
Joining the Spring River Area Chamber of Commerce or other business associations can provide additional insight and inspiration for keeping your business afloat.
The pandemic has hit small business owners hard, but there’s hope. Things probably won’t ever fully return to the way they were before, but you can help keep your business going by supporting your employees, making your customers feel safe and always looking for fresh ways to do business.
RE: E. WILSON GREEN AWARD & FUTURE LEADERS AWARD NOMINATIONS
DEADLINE: December 31, 2020
To: All S.R.A.C.C. Members,
Below are downloadable nomination forms for the E. Wilson Green Award and the Future Leaders Award.2020 E.WILSON GREEN Nomination form
2020 FUTURE LEADER AWARD Nomination form
These awards are usually presented at our annual banquet, which has been postponed or possibly canceled due to Covid. If it is canceled, we will be giving the awards personally and recorded on Facebook and Press Releases.
The E. Wilson Green Award was first given in 1990 and is presented in memory of the late Chamber volunteer/leader, E. Wilson Green, who served as a board member and was an instrumental participant in the Chamber for many years.
The award is presented to a person or organization for outstanding contributions to the Chamber and/or this community. This Nominee does not have to be a member of the S.R.A.C.C. Please give proper and due consideration to a deserving person or organization for this outstanding award.
RULES FOR E.WILSON GREEN AWARD:
- The candidate should have distinguished himself/herself by love of and vigorous support for the community.
- No previous E.Wilson Green Award winner may be nominated or receive the award again.
- Candidate must live in the Spring River Area, which includes: Ash Flat, Hardy, Highland, Cherokee Village or surrounding areas.
- All nominations will be reviewed by the Executive Board of Directors. The Board will select the top three (3) nominees and these names will appear on the Ballot. This ballot will be mailed to all members to be voted on. Each Chamber member will have only one (1) vote.
- Must be present to receive award during the banquet (if held) and, hopefully, be able to present the award to the following year’s recipient..
RULES FOR FUTURE LEADER AWARD:
- Must be 18 or under and has not graduated High School yet.
- Must actively work to create a better community (This can be through volunteerism, supporting peers in a positive manner and being a productive member of society).
- Actions which qualify must have been to benefit the Spring River and/or surrounding areas.
- Must be present to receive award during the banquet (if held) and, hopefully, be able to present the award to the following year’s recipient.
- Candidate should have distinguished himself/herself by love of and vigorous support for the community.
- Candidate must live in the Spring River Area, which includes: Ash Flat, Hardy, Highland, Cherokee Village or surrounding areas
- A committee will be selecting the winner of the Future Leader Award.
We appreciate your cooperation in submitting nominees as soon as possible.
They may be emailed to: [email protected]
Or, mailed to: SRACC, PO Box 1015, Hardy, AR 72542
If you’ve spent the last several years building a work-from-home career only to suffer a job loss during the pandemic, you’re not alone. Millions of Americans are trying to bounce back after a career setback. But you have an advantage many others don’t: You’re used to working from home. Now, you just have to get out there, find more work, and ensure that you’re set up for long-term success. Here are some practical tips to get you started:
Hit the Web
These days, it’s easier than ever to find jobs online.
- Start with general interest job sites like Indeed, Monster, and Career Builder.
- If you want sites more tailored to freelance and contract work, try Upwork, Fiverr, and Toptal Business.
- Use Virtual Vocations, FlexJobs, and Remote.co for finding remote-only work.
- To find tech-related remote jobs, try GitHub Jobs, AngelList, and PowerToFly.
Make a Workspace
No matter what kind of work you do at home, you will need a proper workstation.
- Make sure your workspace allows you to separate your work and home life.
- Choose a location in your home that provides plenty of access to natural light.
- Choose attractive and efficient lighting to use during the darker hours.
- Don’t hesitate to put out a few house plants.
- Paint the walls a color that motivates you and helps you stay productive.
Continuing to learn and investing in the right tools will go a long way in helping you succeed.
- Find marketing and social networking opportunities when you join the Spring River Area Chamber of Commerce.
- Consider pursuing an online degree to grow your business knowledge and skills.
- Invest in a quality desk and ergonomic chair for your workspace.
- Look into all of the communication and collaboration tools that can help you succeed as a remote worker.
- And don’t forget about the wealth of productivity apps out there that can help you stay accountable and efficient on a daily basis.
Even though no one really knows how long the pandemic will last, it doesn’t have to stop you from having a great career now and in the future. Look on the right job sites for new work, make sure you have a sufficient workspace, and equip yourself for short-term and long-term success.
Article courtesy of Katie Conroy , [email protected]
The 2020 Business Showcase is running from October 5 through Dec. 14. Enter to win a $250 cash prize and other drawing prizes such as:
$25 Amazon Card
Wooden Hand-made Jewelry Box
(4) 16 Minute Go Kart Rides (1 PRIZE)
Frontier Lanes Bowl & Meal Package for 2
Free Month Gymnastics Lessons
(2) $25 Ruby’s on Main Gift Certificates
(5) $50 Gift Cards or cash
1 year Subscription for Villager News
Rechargeable Weed Eater
Custom Keepsake Mini Bat
(3) Gift Basket Prizes:
1 at $25 value
2 at $50 value (one with tools)
(3) Separate 1-Night Stays at Romantic Spa Rooms Prizes at:
Biggers B&B, Riverview Falls, or Cedar Glade Resort
Rare & Valuable Coin Set
Phone Protection Pro Wrap ($40)
*Drawing prizes are donated by participating SRACC Members
HERE WAYS TO ENTER THE DRAWINGS:
- GO TO THE SPRING RIVER AREA CHAMBER OF COMMERCE FACEBOOK PAGE AND LIKE, SHARE AND COMMENT ON THE BUSINESS SHOWCASE FACEBOOK POSTS THAT BEGAN OCTOBER 5.
- VISIT THE WEEKLY FEATURED MEMBERS AND ENTER DRAWINGS ON SITE
- PURCHASE GOODS/SERVICES FROM FEATURED MEMBERS THROUGH DECEMBER 14 AND EMAIL PHOTO OF RECEIPT TO: [email protected]
SRACC SETS BUSINESS SHOWCASE
In lieu of the annual Business Expo, the Spring River Area Chamber of Commerce is excited to announce an alternative virtual promotion to showcase our members this year with weekly promotions from October 5 through December 12.
Each week 8 to 10 participating SRACC members will be highlighted through newspaper, radio and Facebook promotions. Live videos will be conducted at each participant’s location and posted on the SRACC Facebook page. In addition to advertising and highlighting member business, the public can win prize drawings throughout the promotion and there will be a grand prize of $250.
In addition to paid and donated advertising of the participants each week, the Villager Journal, all three Hometown Radio stations and KKIK 106.5 will be co-sponsoring offering special advertising packages for the participants at discounted prices to enhance their visibility.
To encourage the community to participate in the promotion and support their local businesses, there will drawings for prizes supplied by the participants throughout the promotion.
People can qualify for prize drawings by:
1) liking, sharing and commenting on the SRACC’s weekly Business Showcase Facebook posts and live videos
2) visiting the participating featured members and enter a drawing at their location, and/or
3) purchasing something at a featured member’s business and emailing a photo of the receipt to the SRACC.
All of those entries will be included in the $250 grand prize at the end of the promotion.
For more information about the contest please call 870-856-3210.
Email: [email protected]