Applications are now available for the 2022 Business Expo on Oct. 8.
Our members can set up free and non-members will be charged a $25 vendor fee (great time to join the chamber if not a member!).
This event is not only free to the public to attend, but they can win all kinds of great prizes from the vendors…AND if they visit all the vendors they will be eligible for a $250 cash prize!
DOWNLOAD YOUR BUSINESS EXPO APPLICATION HERE: 2022 BUSINESS EXPO APPLICATION
SRACC & ACNA HOST
SPRING RIVER’S GOT TALENT SHOW 2022
The 4th Spring River’s Got Talent show is back and will be held on September 17, 2022 , at the Hardy Civic Center where local musical performers will compete for a total of $2,000 in prize money. Doors will open at 1pm and performances will begin at 2pm. The Hardy Civic Center is located at 301 East Main
This event was originated by Doug Driesel and first occurred in 2006 and 2007 to benefit the Spring River Performing Arts and was given to Fountain Place as a fundraiser in 2019. When Fountain Place closed they bequeathed the event to be shared by the Spring River Area Chamber of Commerce and the Arts Center of North Arkansas, who were planning to hold the event in 2020 but was canceled due to the Covid pandemic.
Tickets to the event are $15 for Adults, $10 for Students, and age 5 and under are free. They will be sold at the Chamber office in Hardy, ACNA in Cherokee Village and other places to be announced. Snack foods will be available and a Silent Auction will be held during the event.
Musical performers may be solo, duets or bands and will be chosen through an audition process..There will be 5 performances chosen to compete in the youth category (ages 14 and under) to win trophies and $75, $100 and $125 prizes. There will be 10 performances chosen in the over 14 category and prizes will be $1000 for first place, $500 for second place and $250 for third place.
Performers interested in auditioning need to send an audition video or website link via email of the song they are planning to perform to email@example.com and firstname.lastname@example.org no later than noon, August 31. They will be notified by September 1st if they are selected to compete. The must live or work in the North Central Arkansas, including the counties of Sharp, Fulton, Izard, Independence, Jackson, Lawrence, Randolf or Stone. If chosen acts have submitted duplicate songs, the first one to submit will have the right to that song, and the others will have to choose another. Other information that needs to accompany the audition includes: written song lyrics (songs must be family friendly and appropriate for children to hear), contact info, performer names, and band names. Songs may be no longer than 3 ½ minutes. Previous winners of this event may not compete again but may attend as guest and be introduced.
2022 SRGT proceeds will be used for ACNA’s Cherokee Village location’s operating costs to display and sell works by local artists and provide various art classes, such as painting, photography, music, jewelry making, sculpture, etc. ACNA is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization and all donations and sponsorships may be tax deductible. Sponsorships are still available at the $100 Friends of the Arts level – which includes 2 adult tickets and recognition, and the $250 Corporate Sponsor which includes recognition in marketing pieces, ability to sell event tickets, 4 premier seating tickets and 2 general admission tickets.
A special thank you to our sponsors to date, which include: Major Sponsors – First Community Bank, FNBC and Rebel Time Out; Corporate Sponsors – Cedar Glade Resort & Spa, Community Home Health, Ozark Gateway Realty OGWLLC, and WRMC Medical Complex; and Friends of the Arts – All Pro Glass, CB Keith Flyfishing, Highland Window & Door, Kari Hollis, Marty Williams, Moss Antiques & Gifts, Nancy Gonzalez, Norman Cozart United Country Realty, North Arkansas Electric Cooperative, Ozark Classic Crafts Mall, Ozarka College, and Ruby’s on Main.
The Spring River Area Chamber of Commerce’s 2022 Scholarship Application is now available for graduating high school students living in the quad cities of Ash Flat, Cherokee Village, Hardy, Highland or immediate unincorporated surrounding communities. Applicants must be a senior at either Highland High School or be homeschooled to apply. Additionally the applicant must be planning on attending a community college, 4-year college or technical or specialized training school.
At least two (2) $500 scholarships will be awarded.
The application may be requested by email (email@example.com) or picked up at the Highland High School from Kelly Mahaffey.
You may also download the application here:2022 Scholarship Application
Deadline to submit the application is April 5, 2022. It may be emailed or mailed to:
PO Box 1015
Hardy, AR 72542
dropped off at 119 E. Main St. in Hardy (Inside the Ruby’s on Main store).
For more information call 870-856-3210.
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.