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Wednesday afternoon, two De Queen residents were arrested for shoplifting at the Shoe Depot.


Sergeant Chad Bradshaw reported that when he arrived, he witnessed Tommy Rudisill, the owner of the Shoe Depot, following a man and a woman across the Fred's parking lot.


After advising the suspects to stop, Bradshaw was informed by Rudisill that he witnessed the couple take a pair of Sketcher shoes without paying for them.


While Bradshaw was speaking with Rudisill, the female, who was identified as 31-year-old Raven Harris, asked if she could pay for the shoes. Rudisill reportedly told her no, but she was going to jail.


Harris was then taken into custody and placed in Bradshaw's patrol car.


When Bradshaw asked the male suspect who was identified as 31-year-old Donald Gillespie if he was involved in the incident.


Gillespie allegedly responded that he was not involved, but when he was asked if he witnessed Harris take the shoes, he would not give a straight answer. So, Gillespie was also taken into custody and charged with shoplifting.


Bradshaw reported that Harris also had a second pair of shoes in a big bag along with some other items.




4-H CHICKEN BBQ HELD      4/10/15


Sevier County 4-her's, their parents and judges braved the cold and rainy weather on March 9th to compete in the Sevier County 4-H Chicken BBQ competition.


Each 4-her provided their own charcoal grill, charcoal, spices and sauces and cooked a whole chicken. Participates were judged on their ability to build, start and control the charcoal fire, preparing and handling of the raw chicken and the cooking of the chicken, including its doneness, flavor and color.


Scores were out of a possible 300 and Blake Sawyer was the winner with 290 points. He was followed by Aaron Hicks, Sydney Hill, Hunter Frachiseur, Amber Morris, Brayden Frachiseur, Attalee Frachiseur, Danielle Beck and Abby Morris.


The top five competitors will represent Sevier County at the District Chicken BBQ cook-off.






The County Extension Service Offices of Howard, Pike, Nevada, Miller, Lafayette, Sevier, Little River, and Hempstead along with the Mine Creek, Pike County and Hempstead County Conservation Districts are offering a grazing school on Thursday, April 16th from 3 to 8 p.m.


The workshop will provide some hands-on activities as well as some classroom instructions. 


The workshop will begin with the hands-on portion on the Clyde Keaster Farm on Highway 278, which is east of Nashville. Speakers will cover electric fencing for grazing management, weed identification and control and sprayer calibration using GPS.


The classroom portion of the workshop will be held at the Howard County EH House on Second Street in Nashville. Speakers will discuss estimating yields and stocking rates, forage testing and programs that are available through the National Resource Conservation Service.


A meal will be served and the cost of the workshop is $10 per person or $15 per couple.


For more information, contact Sherry Beaty-Sullivan at 870-845-7517.






Dr. Kenny Martin and the Ashdown Veterinary Clinic are hosting the 2015 Little River County 4-H rabies clinic on Tuesday, April 14th in Foreman at the Little River County Fair Barn from 3:30 to 5 p.m. and on Friday, April 17th in Ashdown in the old Wal-Mart parking lot from 3:30 to 5:30 p.m.


Arkansas law requires that all dogs and cats three months and older be vaccinated against rabies each year.


Discounted rabies shots will cost $7 for dogs and cats. Other shots such as DHLPP for dogs and FVRCP for cats will cost $13 and FELUK for cats will also be available for $18


For each rabies shot that is given this week, a donation will be made to the Little River County 4-H.


For more information, call the Little River County Cooperative Extension Office at 870-898-7224 or call the Ashdown Veterinary Clinic at 870-898-5181.






Seven defendants accepted plea offers from the office of the Prosecuting Attorney Bryan Chesshir on March 2nd in the Sevier County Circuit Court before Circuit Judge Tom Cooper.


Tomas Blume changed his plea to guilty for failure to register as a habitual child sex offender.


Blume was sentenced to three years in the Arkansas Department of Corrections with two years suspended. He was also given credit for time that he served in the county jail while awaiting trial.


Angela Gonzalez plead guilty to possession of drug paraphernalia. She was given three years of probation.


Brandon Morrison changed his plea to guilty for possession of drug paraphernalia and for the manufacturing of marijuana. He was sentenced to three years probation and fined $2,000 plus court cost.


Thomas Parr plead guilty to possession of drug paraphernalia. He was sentenced to three years probation and fined $1,500 plus court cost.


Brandon Poindexter plead guilty to possession of Hydrocodone and was sentenced to four years in the Arkansas Department of Corrections with two years suspended. Poindexter will serve his Sevier County sentence concurrently with a similar conviction in Howard County.


Aaron Smith changed his plea to guilty and was sentenced to seven years with four suspended for the delivery of a controlled substance - meth.


And, Curtis Smith was sentenced to three years probation and fined $2,000 plus court cost having changing his plea to guilty.



Chalice Cupboard March Report 2015     04/09/15


Helping county residents with the difficulty of putting sufficient food on their tables had forty-nine families receiving help last month--with 177 people assisted, 101 adults and 76 children.


The Chalice Cupboard had a balance of $5,062.32 in the bank on March 1, 2015.  The balance on March 31, 2115 was $ 4,299.80.  Gifts of $ 310.00 were deposited last month.  Money in the amount of $ 1,072.52 was withdrawn to purchase 1,318 pounds of food.


Gifts of food for the pantry totaled 287 pounds.  This food was received

from the Saint Barbara Catholic Church (127 lbs.); from the Salvation Army Store (28 lbs.); individuals (10 lbs.); and anonymous items (94 lbs.).


The Chalice Cupboard's address is 315 North Fifth St., in De Queen.  Distributions of food are made on Tuesdays and Wednesdays, from 2:00 until 3:15 p.m.  Records are kept for three months for the purpose of sharing food with all who need supplemental food. 


All residents in Sevier County may receive food ONCE each quarter [January – March; April – June; July – September; October – December].  Record the date on your calendar of the date you last received food to avoid seeking food more than once in any of the four quarters.  Unless you seek a second distribution in a quarter, you are welcome to request food any time, as needed, during each quarter.

Submitted by Grant Groves

COUNTY 4-H OUTDOOR O'RAMA       4/9/15


The outdoor activities of the Sevier County 4-H O'Rama were held on March 3rd at the Sevier County Fairgrounds with activities ranging from baitcasting, bicycle, gun safety and BB shooting and Reel into Sports Fishing.


County 4-H competitions consisted of three age groups: Cloverbuds, ages 5 through 8; Juniors, ages 9 through 14; and Seniors, ages 15 through 19.


Aaron Morris won the Senior division in gun safety and BB gun shooting, while Marcus Rosson won the Junior division followed by Blake Sawyer and Amber Morris.


Brayden Frachiseur won the Junior division in the reel into sports fishing activity followed by Hunter Frachiseur and Brennen Seymour.


Marcus Rosson won the baitcasting activity in the Junior division followed by Brennen Seymour and Brayden Frachiseur.


Jake Sawyer won the Junior division in the bicycle activity.


The junior and senior winners will be able to compete in the next level of competition at the District O'Rama that is held in June of each year.


If you'd like more information about the Sevier County 4-H program, contact the Extension Office at 584-3013.






April 12th through 18th is National Volunteer Week and the De Queen Medical Center will honor the hospital's auxiliary members with a reception Sunday afternoon from 2 to 4 p.m. in the hospital lobby.


Auxiliary President Mary Johnson and Dee Hickel informed KDQN the auxiliary was celebrating its 95th year of service in De Queen.


Johnson explained there three part parts to the De Queen Auxiliary program. Those parts are the hospital gift shop, a refreshment cart and a group that visits and sings at the local nursing home.


Johnson said all of the funds raised by the auxiliary are used for grants or to purchase items for the hospital. Some of the grants are for continuing education opportunities for hospital staff members. They also give a $100 gift to the Arkansas Children’s Hospital each year.


Hickel reported that in the past, the auxiliary purchased several items to help furnish the new hospital, like clocks, TVs and the furnishings in the hospital chapel.


Hickel said everyone is invited to attend Sunday's reception and fill out an application to be a Pink Lady or gentleman.


And, while attending the reception from 2 to 4, visit the gift shop and you'll find things that you can't find anywhere else including some exclusive Fonda Hill jewelry.


 Auxiliary History




Lauren Linsey and Sally Hennard of the First Baptist Church of De Queen's WINGS Women's Ministry announced they would be hosting their annual spring ladies retreat this Saturday from 8:30 a.m. until 2:30 p.m.


Hennard stated the speakers will include Courtney White, Terry Brackett and Debbie Stuart.


They also mentioned if you need for information, you should contact the church at 642-2151.


The cost is $15 and includes a light breakfast and lunch. To reserve your seat, call 642-2151.






Investigators with the Sevier County Sheriff's Office are investigating the death of a Texarkana resident following an ATV accident on Saturday, April 4th.


Deputy Michael Barnes reported that when he arrived at the scene, three individuals were already on the scene.


Karen Pounders reported the accident and informed Deputy Barnes that Chad Jenkins had called her father, Jimmy Clyde a little before 9 p.m. She said Jenkins was hysterical and they had a difficult time understanding him, but when he calmed down, they figured out that he was close to Round Top Hunting Club and that there had been an accident and someone was dead.


Pounders reported that when they arrived, they found a man trapped under an ATV that had overturned.


Deputy Barnes reported that while interviewing Jenkins, he noticed a strong odor that is associated with alcohol.


Jenkins reported that he and the victim, 41-year-old Aaron Hooker had been out riding in the ATV when they came to a clearing on Morris Road. Jenkins said the ATV wouldn't turn all the way around, so he backed up, so they could leave. He said Hooker told him to goose it, and when he did, the ATV flipped over onto its side.


According to Jenkins, he fell on top of Hooker and that is when he noticed the ATV was also on top of him. He said he attempted to lift the ATV, but couldn't, so, he attempted to use the wench to pull it off of Hooker but that didn't work either.


Deputies also discovered 24 empty cans of beer along with six unopened cans, four bottles of water, and a Yeti cooler.


According to the incident report, Jenkins passed the field sobriety tests and was then transported to the De Queen Regional Medical Center Emergency Room so he could provide urine and blood samples.


Hooker was pronounced dead at the scene by Sevier County Coroner Rusty Williams about 10:15 Saturday night.


No charges have been filed at this time, but the incident remains under investigation.






Students from Umpire Elementary have been working on fact fluency this year by using the Soft Seven Math Race program.


Students work on computers answering multiplication fact problems as quickly as they can, so, on April 1st, the school held a tournament.


Third grade winners were Jalyn Estep, Abby Cook and Jon Antonio. Fourth grade winners were Elijah Ward, Yahir Garcia and Melissa Salinas. Fifth grade winners were Lexi Efird, Allie McConnell and Ben O'Neal. Sixth grade winners were Selena Zaragoza and Lainey Eason.


The overall winner was Efird and she won an Ipod.


The top seven students will now compete in the regional competition in Barling, Arkansas.





Monday afternoon about 1 p.m., three Lockesburg residents were killed in an accident on Highway 71 about 11 miles South of Mena.


23-year-old Latosha Nicole Leathers and her two children were pronounced dead at the scene about 2:30 by Polk County Coroner Brian Bowser.


According to the accident report, Leathers was driving a 2002 Ford van northbound on Highway 71 when she lost control of the vehicle. The van then traveled into the southbound lane backwards and was struck by a 1975 Peterbilt that was being driven by 52-year-old Gayle Pipes of Redwater, Texas.


Pipes was transported to the Mena Medical Hospital for the treatment of her injuries.






Teresa Morris, Dustin Roberts and Megan McMahen are members of the 2015 Sevier County Leadership Class that's sponsored by the De Queen/Sevier County Chamber of Commerce.


This year's class announced their community project was 'Another 5K Run/Walk' at the De Queen Lake. The event will take place on Saturday, April 25th at 8 a.m. The run/walk will start at the Sevier County Rural Water Office.


Pre-registration fee is $25 until April 17th and $30 post-entry and on the day of the race.  


All proceeds will benefit the Chalice Cupboard in De Queen, which provides food to Sevier County residents. The Cupboard is located on Fifth Street in De Queen and distributes food on Tuesdays and Wednesdays from 2 to 3:15 p.m. of each week.


The Chalice Cupboard also accepts donations from churches, community organizations and individuals.


For more information about the Chalice Cupboard, contact Grant Groves at 642-3420.


For a registration form for the leadership classes 5K, visit the stations website at






Monday night during the De Queen Board of Education meeting, board members upheld Superintendent Bruce Hill's recommendation to expel a middle school student for the remainder of the year.


Hill reported the student drew what could be described as a terroristic threat toward another student on a test paper that was then turned into the teacher.


Hill then reported the lockers have been installed in the new baseball/softball locker rooms. He said the district is changing some locks around the campus and he plans to move the district's computer servers into the old elementary building this summer because the trailer that currently houses the servers is in disrepair.


Hill also announced the district would be increasing its broadband from 100 mega bytes to 500 mega bytes.


Board members heard a report from Coach Dennis Chaney concerning the startup cost of a new high school trap team. Following Chaney’s report, the board voted to approve the high school trap team and budgeted $8,000 to cover the startup cost.


Hill went over the district's legislative audit with the board and stated there was nothing serious in the audit. Board members then reviewed the district's financial report. Hill noted the district was about $800,000 ahead of this time last year.


Board members accepted the resignations of Patty Sharp, Linda Warren and Sally Hennard.


The next meeting of the De Queen Board of Education is set for Monday, May 11th at 5:30 p.m. in the administration board room.






If you are ready to improve your health or if you've decided it's time for you to start exercising on a regular basis, then consider joining the University of Arkansas Division of Agriculture, Cooperative Extension Service in Sevier County for a 12-week fitness class.


The Sevier County Extension Service is offering a group fitness program called Extension Get Fit, to help adults increase their strength, flexibility and balance.


The 12-week program will allow you to try dumbbells, ankle weights, stretch tubes and medicine balls to improve fitness in a fun and relaxed one-hour class.


Sessions will meet twice a week on Tuesday and Thursday at 1 p.m. at Christopher Homes in Horatio. The class will be instructed by County Extension Agent Janet Cantrell, who has been trained to lead the program.


To participate in the program, you must by 18-years or older. Space is limited, so sign up now by contacting the Extension office at 870-584-3013 by April 13th.


Program participants must attend an orientation meeting on Thursday, April 14th at 1 p.m. in the Activity Room at Christopher Homes. Cost for participating in the program is $12, which includes all sessions and a fitness assessment.






April is National Car Care Month and the Car Care Council reminds motorists to spring into action and follow 10 basic maintenance procedures to make sure their vehicles are running at peak performance for the summer driving season.


1. Check all fluids, including engine oil. power steering, brake and transmission as well as windshield washer solvent and antifreeze/coolant.


2. Check the hoses and belts to make sure they are not cracked, brittle, frayed, loose or showing signs of excessive wear.


3. Check the battery and replace if necessary. Make sure the connection is clean, tight and corrosion-free.


4. Check the brake system annually and have the brake linings, rotors and drums inspected at each oil change.


5. Inspect the exhaust system for leaks, damage and broken supports or hangers if there is an unusual noise.


6. Schedule a tune-up to help the engine deliver the best balance of power and fuel economy and produce the lowest level of emissions.


7. Check the heating, ventilating and air conditioning system, as proper heating and cooling performance is critical for interior comfort and for safety reasons such as defrosting.


8. Inspect the steering and suspension system annually including shock absorbers, struts and chassis parts such as ball joints, tie rod ends and other related components.


9. Check the tires, including tire pressure and tread. Uneven wear indicates a need for wheel alignment. Tires should also be checked for bulges and bald spots.


10. Check the wipers and lighting so that you can see and be seen. Check that all interior and exterior lighting is working properly and replace worn wiper blades so you can see clearly when driving during precipitation.


And, we will be conducting interviews with area car care businesses over the next couple of weeks to spotlight businesses that can help keep your car running in tip top shape this year and for years to come.



Becky Aylett has been named Ashdown School District's 2015 Teacher of the Year.  Aylett is a graduate of the Ashdown Schools system and has been a teacher in this same district for 29 years.  With a degree in Elementary Education from East Texas State University, she taught 5th & 6th grades on two different campuses for the first 25 years and presently teaches 3rd grade at C. D. Franks Elementary.

"Younger students and a different curriculum didn't slow her down," says CDF Principal Teresa Wake.  She has a "whatever it takes" attitude about assuring that her students have the learning tools and skills necessary to be successful in the 21st century, including technology. To make the adjustment in grade level, Aylett visited other classroom teachers and "borrowed" the best of the strategies she observed to implement immediately into her own classroom.  Mrs. Wake continues, "As you walk into Mrs. Aylett's classroom, the first thing you will notice is activity.  Students are busy working in stations, on their own Chromebooks, or at the teacher-led group table."

Respected by her peers for her professionalism, Mrs. Aylett has served in many capacities, such as grade level chairman, Leadership Committee member and Literacy Chairman for the Arkansas Comprehensive School Improvement Program, and completed training, such as Pathwise Mentoring, CGI (cognitively guided instruction program for teaching math), Comprehensive Literacy Program, and a 2-year reading course through Harding University.

"She shows respect to all students," Mrs. Wake says, "and pushes them to be the best they can be."

Becky and husband Alan have a son and daughter-in-law Wes and Ashley and a daughter and son-in-law Randee and Wade Kennemore, along with two grandchildren, Adalie and Cash.



Ralph Barrera (Level 3 sex offender)

244 Hwy. 71 North Lot #1

De Queen, Arkansas 71832


This notification is not intended to increase fear. It is our belief that an informed public will be safer. Information is available through many resources, including the state website maintained by the Arkansas Crime Information Center. More information is available from resources listed on the back of this flyer. Citizen abuse of this information to threaten, intimidate or harass offenders will not be tolerated. Such abuse could potentially end law enforcement’s ability to share this information with the public. If notification ends, the offender will win since they derive power through secrecy.

Four community notification levels apply. The higher the level assigned, the broader the notification to the community. Level 1(low) warrants minimal notice to the community (usually other law enforcement and/or members of the offender’s household only).Level 2(moderate) warrants limited notice to specific groups. Level 3 (high) warrants notification of all community members likely to encounter the offender. Level 4 is reserved for offenders who have a habitual or serious pattern of offending and are deemed sexual violent predators.

The De Queen Police Department and Sevier County Sheriff’s Office are releasing information pursuant to section 13 Act 989 of 1997, known as the Sex and Child Offender Registration and Community Notification Guidelines. This act authorizes law enforcement to inform the public of a sex offenders presence when the release of such information will enhance public safety and protection. Individuals appearing on these notifications have been convicted of an offense requiring registration with the Arkansas Crime Information Center.


Five teachers in the Ashdown School District were honored at a breakfast on March 20 as the Teachers of the Year for their respective campuses.  Selected by their peers, the Ashdown Campus Teachers of the Year pictured in the front row are (left to right) Ashdown High School TOY Jennifer Walker; L.F. Henderson Intermediate TOY Nicosia Hunter; Ashdown Junior High School TOY Jeanne Burden; C.D.Franks Elementary TOY Becky Aylett; and Margaret Daniel Primary TOY Rosalie Tabler.  Principals and administrators from the school district honored the teachers at the breakfast, along with (pictured back row, left to right) Superintendent Jason Sanders and Ashdown School Board members Chuck Davis, Michael Turner, Dorothy Henderson and Rosa Bowman.

In addition, Superintendent Sanders announced at the breakfast that Becky Aylett is the recipient of the Ashdown District 2015 Teacher of the Year award, which will be presented at the Little River Chamber of Commerce banquet on April 9.



The only diamond producing site open to the public in the world is located right here in southwest Arkansas. The Diamond State Park in Murfreesboro is the eighth largest diamond bearing deposit in the world, in surface area and in addition to producing diamonds, other semi-precious gems and minerals can be found in the park's 37 1/2 acre search area.


In total, over 75,000 diamonds have been unearthed at Arkansas' diamond site since the first diamonds were found in 1906 by John Huddleston.


The park did not become a state park until 1972.


Park interpreter Waymon Cox says visitors from all over the world visit the diamond mine and each diamond find creates an excitement and sometimes draws attention from national media.


CNN recently conducted a story on the park and aired it on TV.


If you would like to learn more about the park, visit their website at or call 870-285-3113.






An individual wanted in connection with the recent break in and theft at the Dierks School campus has been apprehended.


37-year-old James Alsup, of Rison, was taken into custody by the U.S. Marshals office in Pine Bluff Thursday afternoon.


Alsup is being charged in Howard County with multiple counts of commercial burglary and theft of property stemming from the Dierks break in while the district was out of school on spring break.


In addition to the Howard County charges, Alsup is the suspect in at least two other recent school break-ins in northeast Arkansas.






Connect Arkansas has announced that they will be offering a free adult digital literacy class at the Sevier County Library in De Queen from noon until 2 p.m. this Wednesday.


Class size is limited to five students and each student will be provided a computer. To sign up for the Internet and Email Basics class, contact Johnye Fisher at 584-4364.


Connect Arkansas received federal stimulus grants to increase Internet awareness, education and use in Arkansas. As part of that grant, Connect Arkansas launched the Adult Digital Literacy Program. They are scheduled to offer more than 45 classes in April throughout Arkansas.






Miss Teen Texarkana Twin Rivers, Scarlett Leeper, has some local ties and she stopped by the KDQN studios Monday morning to announce that she will be hosting a free concert this Thursday in Texarkana at the Silvermoon on Broad from 7 to 9 p.m.


Leeper is the granddaughter of Waylan and Brenda Leeper of De Queen. She said this was her first pageant, but she realized pageants would provide her with new opportunities.


Leeper explained that Thursday's concert will support her platform of musical therapy for Alzheimer patents and funds will be used to purchase Ipods for patents at BWC Cornerstone.


Leeper also selected her sister, Hannah Leeper and Mary Clair Lynch to be her princesses.


For more information about Leeper's concert, visit our website at






Victor Rojas Jr. of De Queen serves on the Arkansas Coalition for Juvenile Justice Board and has presented plan to develop tools that school districts can employ when students are misbehaving that will not put them into the juvenile justice system.


Rojas explained that he started working on his plan after reviewing a report that was published by the Arkansas Advocates for Children and Families.


About that same time, a juvenile detention center was closed due to the use of unauthorized techniques. Rojas said that detention center as since been reopened.


Rojas also explained some districts contact law enforcement agencies for all kinds of discipline issues, including minor issues that could be dealt with in the principals office.


Rojas said some district's use law enforcement as a first response and if school resource officers are employed by a district, they should be properly trained.


Rojas explained his plan involved everyone from parents, administrators and law enforcement agencies.


Rojas also reported that the state legislature recently passed a bill that will invest funds into community based programs and reserve juvenile confinement to more serious cases.


Rojas' plan will also be posted to our stations website for your review.  


School Discipline Plan




Judge Stephen Tedder announced Friday morning that he was extending this year's Sevier County District Court Amnesty Program through the month of April.


Tedder said it may help more people who may have not received their tax returns yet because he signs about 30 warrants a week for failure to pay.


Tedder stated fines don't have an expiration date and the program is no good if people don't take advantage of it. He also explained that if a person is arrested on an outstanding warrant, they will not be eligible for the amnesty program. Tedder said fines may be paid in cash or with a debit or credit card, but for more information, or to check and see if you qualify for the amnesty program, call the Sevier County District Court office at 584-7311.





The Sevier County Health Unit will observe Public Health Week April 6th-12th. The public is encouraged to visit the health unit during the week to learn about the services the Health Department provides.


Public Health Week is observed during the first full week of April each year. During the week, health professionals connect with individuals and communities to show them how public health helps Arkansans improve their own health, protects them from epidemics and provides preventive health services in their communities.


This year's theme is "Healthiest Nation in One Generation - by 2030," focuses on the steps it will take to ensure that our youngest generation will be the healthiest American generation yet.


According to the 2015 County Health Ranking, Sevier County ranks 30th as the healthiest out of 75 counties in Arkansas. The major factors contributing to this ranking include: tobacco use, obesity, and physical activity, lack of access to healthy foods, lack of access to health care, low education level, high child poverty and unemployment.


For more information about National Public Health Week 2015 in Arkansas, visit the website, and click on the 'Healthiest Generation 2030' banner.






De Queen High School senior Lucee Lugo has been awarded the Chancellor's Leadership Corp Scholarship with is valued at $16,000 and the Provost's Academic Excellence Scholarship which is valued at $32,000 to the University of Arkansas at Little Rock.


Lugo is a member of the National Honor Society, show choir, student council, gifted and talented, and the Lady Leopard soccer team. She is the daughter of Rich and Amy Lugo.


Lugo plans to attend UALR and major in physical therapy.






Spring is one of the most colorful times of year to get outside and take great photographs and the Crater of Diamond State Park offers many unique, picturesque settings that photographers of any skill level can enjoy.


On Saturday, April 25th, digital photographers ages 13 and up are invited to attend this year's Spring Photography in the Park workshop from 10 a.m. until 3:30 p.m. in the Diamond Discovery Center classroom.


Participates will learn about camera settings, accessories and composition techniques to help you take great photos of spring flowers and scenery.


If its nice outside, participates will practice taking photos around the park. They may also choose their favorite photograph to show in the digital springtime photo gallery in the visitor center.


Space is limited to 15 people, with a minimum of three required. Admission to the workshop is $20 per person and that includes a $10 advanced fee, which is due by April 18th.


To register or to get more information, call the Crater of Diamonds State Park at 870-285-3113.





Aaron Morris of the Lucky Clovers 4-H Club, Shooting Sports Club and 4-H Teen Leaders Club attended the Arkansas 4-H Day at the state Capitol, March 18th.


While at the Capitol, Morris heard Governor Asa Hutchinson speak about the importance of 4-H and its youth development programs, as well as, tour the Capitol, sit in the gallery during a session of the Arkansas Senate and meet with District 4 Representative DeAnn Vaught.


About 300 4-H members from all over the state spent the day at the Capitol.






Wednesday afternoon during the weekly meeting of the De Queen Rotary Club, members presented their annual Community Service Awards.


Sevier County Judge Greg Ray presented the County Fireman of the Year award to Tommy Russell of the Gillham Volunteer Fire Department.


Sevier County Jail Administrator Kim Culp presented the award for the Deputy of the Year to Chief Deputy Chad Dowdle.


De Queen Mayor Billy Ray McKelvy presented Rickey Lovell, the city's Fireman of the Year award and Police Chief Richard McKinley presented the Policeman of the Year award to Wayne Baker.


Rotary members also honored Jessica Miller with the De Queen Student of the Month award.  Miller is the daughter of Doug and Cecilia Miller and she plans to attend Southern Arkansas University in the fall and major in nursing. 






Sevier County Extension Agent Rex Herring announced Tuesday morning that the extension service would be hosting a backyard poultry workshop April 7th at 6 p.m. in the Ag building on the De Queen campus of UA Cossatot.


Herring explained the workshop was not intended for commercial growers, but everyone is invited


Herring said speakers will cover several topics including other poultry diseases if time permits.


For more information about the backyard poultry workshop, contact the Extension office by calling 870-584-3013.



The Ashdown High School Scholarship Committee will soon be awarding scholarships to 2015 AHS graduates, as it has since its formation in 1986, and contributors are encouraged to either continue donations as they have in previous years or become new scholarship donors and contribute to the success of new Ashdown High School graduates in their post-secondary endeavors.

"Last year, we awarded 39 scholarships with a total value of $15,948," states Ronda Pounds, chairperson of the committee.  "This brings the total scholarships to over $321,561 awarded to 917 students over the course of our 29-year history."

Pounds also states that 100% of all donated monies are awarded every year and that all donations are tax deductible. 

The Scholarship Committee has also authorized an alumni fund through which former students of Ashdown High School and businesses may contribute to the program in any amount and at any time.  Such contributions may be made in honor or memory of friends and loved ones.

As in previous years, scholarship recipients will be announced and scholarships awarded at a tea sponsored by the committee.  The date for this year's tea is Sunday, May 3 at 2:00 p.m. in the Ashdown High School cafeteria.  "All donors are welcome at the tea," Pounds continues, "and welcome to participate in presenting the scholarship they are giving if they would like."

To be awarded to 2015 AHS graduates, contributions must be received by April 15.  They may be mailed to or dropped off at the Ashdown School District Central Office at 511 N. Second Street, Ashdown, Arkansas 71822.




A 2014 Ashdown High School graduate is serving on one of the world's largest warships, the U.S. Navy aircraft carrier, the USS Ronald Reagan.


Airman Apprentice Lacey Adams is an aviation ordnance man aboard the San Diego based ship which is a Nimitz-class nuclear powered aircraft carrier and one of only 10 operational aircraft carriers in the Navy today.


Adams explained that her job is to maintain and assemble the weapons that they put on the aircrafts.


Adams serves with nearly 3,000 crew members in helping protect America on the world's oceans.


After an extended maintenance period spent pier side in San Diego, the USS Ronald Reagan is preparing for its move to Japan, where it will replace the USS George Washington and become a part of the U.S. 7th Fleet forward-deployed naval forces. As part of this rebalance strategy to increase the Navy's presence in the Pacific Fleet, the USS Theodore Roosevelt will move from Norfolk, Virginia to San Diego.


As a member of one of the U.S. Navy's most relied upon assets, Adams and other USS Ronald Reagan sailors know they are part of an agile and skilled team standing ready to defend the United States.






Tuesday afternoon about 6 p.m. troopers with the Arkansas State Police apprehended a felony suspect wanted in Pike County near Gillham in Sevier County.


39-year-old Jeremy Jewell was wanted for aggravated assault in Pike County after he allegedly held a gun to the head of his wife on Monday.


Authorities searched for Jewell in three counties Monday and Tuesday until he was spotted on Highway 71 in Sevier County.


According to the captain of Troop K in Hot Springs, Trooper Mike Thomas made a traffic stop on Jewell in Gillham and discovered that he was wanted on a felon warrant out of Pike County and he was taken into custody without any further incident.


Jewell is currently being held in the Pike County jail awaiting a court appearance.


Deputies from Howard and Polk counties requested assistance from Sevier County deputies but according to a spokesperson with the sheriff's office, no Sevier County deputies were involved in a pursuit. However, a deputy was involved in an accident that sent one person to a hospital in Texarkana by AirEvac while driving to assist other law enforcement agencies.


The accident is being investigated by the Arkansas State Police and no official report was available Wednesday at noon.






Wednesday morning, Youth Pastor Jay Reynolds of the First Assembly of God Church in De Queen stopped by the KDQN studios to remind area residents of their Easter Eggstravaganza on Saturday at 10 a.m.


Reynolds stated the event was free and it would be held rain or shine.


Reynolds said the church was also hosting a golf tournament on Saturday, April 11th at the Cedar Creek Golf Course in Broken Bow to raise funds for missions.


Reynolds said one person will have the opportunity to win a million dollars.


Reynolds also stated you can call the church or visit their website for more information.


For more information about the Easter Eggstravaganza or to sign up for the Spring Golf Classic call Reynolds at 479-466-9186.






Sevier County Museum board member Jim Bo Arnold stopped by the KDQN studios this morning to remind area residents that they can make a contribution to the county museum through the Arkansas Community Foundation today until 8 p.m.


Arnold said if you don't have a computer, you can visit the museum and someone will assist you.


Arnold said the museum was the only non-profit organization participating in the program this year, so all donations from Sevier County will benefit the museum.


If you would like to make a donation of $25 or more, log on to and follow the prompts or visit the Sevier County Museum for assistance.






Deputies in Southwest Arkansas are searching for an inmate that escaped from the Miller County Courthouse, Tuesday afternoon at about 4:30 p.m.


32-year-old Daroyce Rodgers had just been sentenced to 20 years in the Arkansas Department of Corrections when he asked the judge if he could give his mom a hug.


After hugging his mom, Rodgers reportedly jumped a railing and darted out of the courthouse, injuring two bailiffs.


Authorities announced that once Rodgers is captured, he will be charged with escape.


The Miller County Sheriff's office is seeking the public's assistance in locating Rodgers. If you have any information regarding his whereabouts, you are being urged to call the sheriff's office at 870-774-3001. 






Tuesday night, members of the Sevier County Relay for Life were honored by the district leader for Relay for Life, Stina Brown.


Members of the Sevier County Relay for Life received several awards for this past year's event and Brown stated there were four categories of awards that Relay for Life presents to their Volunteers of the Year.


Brown said Relay for Life volunteers go above and beyond the call of duty to help create a world with less cancer and more birthdays.


Becky Matney was honored with the Excellence in Helping Prevent Cancer Award.


Matney has served on the Relay for Life committee for the past 10 years and she chaired the survivors and sponsorship committees for five.


Linda Frachiseur was honored with the Excellence in Caring for those with Cancer award.


Frachiseur has helped organize the annual Relay for Life Survivor's dinner for the past 12 years.


Wendy Litchford received the Excellence in Helping to Seek a Cure award.


Litchford has served the Sevier County Relay for Life committee as the accounting chairperson for the past three years.


Emmy Bailey was presented the Best Practice award. She has been the event chairperson for the past three years and has served on the committee for seven. She has also served as a team captain for six years.


Linda Santiago received the Excellence in Advocating and Fighting Back Award.


Santiago joined Relay for Life in 2007 and has been a team captain since 2009.


Brown also presented Wanda Smith a Bronze level certificate. She and the De Queen Junior High School TLC team have risen over $6,700 so far this year.





On Friday, March 27th, De Queen Police Sergeant Chad Bradshaw reported he noticed a vehicle behind him on Collin Raye Drive that would not proceed around him, even after he slowed down to 25 miles per hour.


Bradshaw said the vehicle then turned onto Fourth Street. After he turned around to follow the vehicle, Bradshaw discovered the vehicle had paper tags, but he couldn't read the expiration date on them.


Bradshaw then conducted a traffic stop.


The driver was identified as 26-year-old Jermaine Hollins.


Hollins then explained to Bradshaw that he knew his paper tags were expired and that he had a warrant out of Sevier County.


Bradshaw reported that also he noticed something white on Hollins' shirt. When he was asked what it was, Hollins stated it was ashes from his cigar.


Bradshaw stated that he also noticed that Hollins kept putting his hands in his pockets and after Hollins attempted to go back to his car, Bradshaw placed him in handcuffs. At that point, Hollins informed Bradshaw that he had some marijuana in his pocket.


Hollins was taken into custody and records indicated he had a warrant out of the City of De Queen, as well as the one out of Sevier County.


While searching Hollins' vehicle, officers discovered a blue glass pipe in the console with residue in it.


Hollins was charged with possession of a controlled substance, possession of drug paraphernalia, driving on a suspended license, no proof of insurance and the outstanding warrants. 






Sara Stewart, Debbie Seymour and several members of the Lakeside 4-H Club announced they were selling chances on a rod and reel to raise funds for the clubs community projects.


Stewart said the Lakeside 4-H Club is raffling off a Duckett Ghost rod and an American Hero reel. Raffle tickets are $1 each or 6 for $5 or 15 for $10 and all the proceeds will benefit the club's community service projects and to help send members to summer day camps.


For more information or to purchase some tickets stop by 5S Outdoors, Tires Plus and Rivas Garage or call Seymour at 582-3340.






This past Saturday about 50 anglers participated in the 1st Annual Little River Leadership Bass Commander Tournament at Yarborough Landing.


Class leader and Chamber Director Fonda Hawthorne spoke with KDQN about the tournament and she explained the tournament was the classes community project.


Hawthorne said Taylor Smith took first place with a fish weighing 7.54 pounds and won the grand prize of $750. Kelly Osteen took second, Doug Jordan was third, Kenny Heady was fourth and Jodie Raffaelli was fifth.


Hawthorne said the class will donate the funds to the City of Foreman so they can purchase equipment for the new Foreman City Park.


Hawthorne also stated the chamber will be holding its annual awards banquet on Thursday, April 9th at 6 p.m. in the Barbara Horn Civic Center on the Ashdown campus of UA Cossatot.


For ticket information, contact the chamber at 870-898-2758 or visit the chamber's website at






The week of April 13-17 has been designated as spring clean-up week for the City of De Queen.


Mayor Billy Ray McKelvy is encouraging residents to pick up trash and debris before the start of the growing season.


To help, the city will be collecting old electronics for recycling at the De Queen Fire Station. They will accept computers, printers, cell phones, televisions and similar items during the week of April 13-17 only.


Items will not be accepted before or after the clean-up week.


Residents may also drop off old cans of paint at the fire station for proper disposal.


Any one who has an old automobile that needs to be removed from their property should contact Baker's Sales and Service at 584-3676, but in some cases, old vehicles may have some salvage value.


To have large items picked up, such as old furniture or appliances, you should contact the De Queen City Hall at 584-3445 and have your name put on the pickup list for the week of April 13-17.






Children's Pastor Crystal Hoover of the First Assembly of God in Broken Bow announced the church would be hosting it's 5th annual Community Egg Hunt this Saturday.


Hoover said the event will feature over 10,000 eggs and there will be activities for children of all ages. She also stated the event is free to the public.


Hoover said everyone is welcome, but if you have any questions to contact the church at 580-584-6546 or visit their website at






A trial date of July 15th was set for a Sevier County man that is being charged with rape in the Sevier County Circuit Court.


36-year-old Lazaro Figueroa of Horatio was arrested for the sexual assault of a minor female, after the victim and other family members were interviewed by an investigator with the Arkansas State Police.


Figueroa is being held in the Sevier County jail on a $100,000 bond.


David Baker plead not guilty to the charge of possession of hydrocodone and possession of meth or cocaine during the March 26th session of the Sevier County Circuit Court.


Baker is being held on a $50,000 bond. His trial date was set for June 24th.


Steven Hogan had a trial date set for July 15th after pleading not guilty to possession of drug paraphernalia.


49-year-old Jeffery Burleson changed his plead to guilty and was sentenced to 16 years in the Arkansas Department of Corrections.


Burleson was charged with possession of controlled substance, possession of drug paraphernalia, and possession of a controlled substance with intent to deliver after selling drugs to an undercover member of the South Central Drug Task Force in December of 2014 in the Wal-Mart parking lot.


According to the incident report, Burleson was arrested on Tuesday, December 23rd as he was leaving the Sevier County Courthouse where he worked as a maintenance employee.




During the Lockesburg Spring Festival and Car Show Saturday morning, several cars were damaged in a minor fender bender.


Sevier County Sheriff's Deputy Rodger Ridley was dispatched to the Ida Margret Coulter Stone Park in reference to a minor accident.


When Ridley arrived he was informed that T.L. Brooks of Winthrop was attempting to turn his 1967 Camaro around in the Lockesburg pavilion parking lot when he hit a 2011 Camaro that belonged to Richard Meredith of Ashdown on the driver side front bumper.


As Brooks attempted to back up, he then struck a 1957 Bel Air, belonging to Earl Hooker of Hooks, Texas and a 1969 Camaro belonging to Douglas Phelps of Atlanta, Texas.


Hooker's Bel Air was damaged on the passenger side front bumper, while Phelps' Camaro was damaged on the driver's side front fender.





The Arkansas state Senate on Friday approved a religious freedom bill that is designed to protect the religious freedoms of Arkansans. 


The bill passed the Senate with a 24-7 vote. 


State Representative Justin Gonzales says it was originally a House bill and will be back in the House this week.  Opponents of the bill say it amounts to state-sanctioned discrimination on religious grounds. 


However, District 4 Representative DeAnn Vaught reported that the law is intended to limit the government's right to interfere with religious beliefs. She said it would establish a legal standard that says that there has to be a compelling governmental interest for the government to intervene and that the government has to use the least restrictive means possible when determining a remedy.


Vaught explained that religious beliefs are a fundamental right under the First Amendment and governments at all levels should have a high bar for limiting that right.


Vaught also pointed out that President Bill Clinton signed the federal Religious Freedom Restoration Act in 1993. This law was one of the determining factors in the Hobby Lobby case, where the Supreme Court ruled the federal government couldn't force the company to violate its Christian beliefs in providing contraception coverage to its employees.


She went on to point out that the federal law was later ruled to not apply to state or local governments and since then many states have enacted their own religious freedom laws to apply to the state and local governments. She said 19 other states have identical or similar versions of this law.


Vaught also pointed out that Barack Obama voted for the Religious Freedom Restoration Act in Illinois in 1998, but activists are protesting the law in Arkansas. As a matter of fact, a petition calling for Governor Asa Hutchinson to veto the bill has more than 13,000 signatures and a group of people rallied outside the Governor’s Mansion on Sunday to oppose the bill.






Youth Pastor Jonathon Reynolds announced Monday morning that the First Assembly of God Church in De Queen would be holding its annual Easter Eggstravaganza this Saturday.


Reynolds said the program will start at 10 a.m. which will allow kids to participate in several of the area egg hunts.


Reynolds stated the church will hide 7,000 full of candy and prizes.


If you have any questions, contact the church at 870-584-3435.






Foreman Superintendent George Kennedy reported that during the March meeting of the Foreman Board of Education, board members approved his recommendation to add an hour to three school days as an experiment to make up the days that the district missed this winter due to inclement weather.


Kennedy also reported the district received a good audit and board members approved the audit findings and responses.


Board members approved the district’s 2015-2016 calendar and accepted the resignation of a preschool classroom manager.


Board members were also informed that Michelle Young had been approved for a Digital Communications grant in the amount of $51,782.85.


Kennedy said the board also recognized the achievements of senior Samantha Bell who is an active volunteer in the Civil Air Patrol. He said

Bell was one of 24 cadets selected to attend the Civic Leadership Academy in Washington, D.C. earlier this year.






Sunday, Sevier County Sheriff's Deputy Greg Davignon observed a white male driving a maroon Chevy truck without a seat belt on Graves Chapel Road.


Deputy Davignon identified the driver as 44-year-old David Nipper of Lockesburg and noted that he had previously arrested Nipper for possession of methamphetamine and possession of drug paraphernalia.


Davignon reported that he gave Nipper a verbal warning for not wearing his seat belt and asked if he had anything illegal in the truck.


Davignon stated Nipper first said he didn't but then admitted to having some meth and a glass pipe in his lunch box.


Nipper was taken into custody and charged with possession of methamphetamine after deputies discovered a plastic bag containing a clear crystal like substance that was suspected of being meth and a glass bulb that had been modified to smoke meth in.





This is a notice that the Horatio School District must annually identify and locate every qualified individual with disabilities that reside within the jurisdiction of the district who is not receiving a public education.

If you have a child that may have a disability and want more information about the special education programs at either the Horatio High School or Elementary, you may contact your child’s principal or the Special Education Administrator, Cindy Frachiseur by calling 870-832-1914.

This program is being carried out in pursuant to the requirements for districts receiving federal education funds; Title VI, Part B of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act of 204 and Section 504 of the 1973 Rehabilitation Act.






The Little River County Chamber of Commerce Banquet is set for next week and Chamber Director Fonda Hawthorne stated that everyone should make plans to attend this year's event on Thursday, April 9th.


Hawthorne also announced awards that will be presented like business awards, teachers of the year and a new award named in honor of former Little River County Judge Clayton Castleman.


This year's keynote speaker will be Steve "the Wildman" Wilson.


Hawthorne explained that Ouachita Baptist University Head football Coach Todd Knight was scheduled to attend but had a conflict on the day of the banquet, so last week; Wilson agreed to be the keynote speaker on short notice.


Hawthorne said tickets are $30 each, but businesses may reserve a table of eight, 16 or 24.


For more information about the Little River County Chamber of Commerce banquet, contact the chamber at 870-898-2758 or visit their website at




WHO IS CALLING ME?       3/31/15


Unsolicited telephone calls can be annoying to Arkansas consumers, especially if the calls are from a business or marketing company trying to sell products or services that consumers do not want or need.


But sometimes, the phone rings and it appears to be someone calling from a state agency or even the attorney general's office. Often times, consumers will listen and seek to comply with whatever the state agency needs from them.


Recently, the Attorney General's office has learned that scamming debt collectors are posing as the very state agencies that go after them, including the Attorney General's office.


Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge issued a consumer alert to warn Arkansans about this new scam and to offer tips on how to best avoid becoming a victim.


Rutledge said consumers should not be fooled into sending money or into providing any personal or financial information to con artists. She said if you receive an uninitiated phone call that demands your Social Security number, credit card numbers or bank account information; it should raise a red flag.


Rutledge said the attorney general's office, the congressional delegation, law enforcement or any federal or state agency does not work on behalf of a third-party collectors or threaten arrest for unpaid debts.


She also said government agency also do not accept or ask consumers to pay with a prepaid debt card or a wire transfer.


Rutledge stated if a consumer owes a debt, legitimate collectors must send you a written validation notice and you should never confirm or provide personal or financial information over the phone or Internet.


When you receive a suspicious or unwanted call, consumers should write down as much information as they can about the caller, including the name of the person, where they are calling from and the phone number. You should then notify the Attorney General's office by calling 1-800-482-8982, or consumers can visit the Attorney General's website at



The week of April 13-17 has been designated as spring clean-up week for the City of De Queen.

City residents are encouraged to pick up trash and debris before the start of the growing season.

The city will again be collecting old electronics items for recycling. Computers, printers, cell phones, televisions and similar items will be collected at the De Queen Fire Station during the week of April 13-17 only. Items delivered before or after clean-up week will not be accepted.

Old paint will also be collected at the fire station for disposal.

Any one who has old automobiles that need to be removed should call Baker’s Sales and Service at 584-3676. In some cases, vehicles may have salvage value.

Pickup of large items such as old furniture or appliances will be available during spring clean-up week. For big items, call De Queen City Hall at 584-3445 to be put on the pickup list.



Monday afternoon, Little River County Sheriff’s Deputies Kenny Purtell and Jon Butler were dispatched to the home of Jill Jones on Highway 32 West in reference to a possible burglary.


According to the incident report, Jones informed the deputies that her mom had called her and told her that a vehicle was parked in her driveway.


Jones said she went home and discovered 31-year-old Rebecca Echols of Ashdown and 25-year-old Linda Crawford of Foreman in her home. She said when she arrived; they were in the process of stealing stuff.


Jones said when the two women saw her; they ran out the back door and got in their car. She said they then drove across the street to the home of Echols’ mom.


Deputies were able to arrest the two women at Echols’ mother’s home without any further incident.






The Dierks Fire Department were toned out about 5:17 a.m. Monday morning for a hog house fire at 281 Thirty Thousand Road.


When fire fighters arrived the hog house was fully engulfed and they requested mutual aid from the Center Point Volunteer Fire Department.


The structure was a total loss and most of the livestock was lost, but the fire departments were able to save some of the hogs.


The Dierks Fire Department responded with four trucks and six fire fighters, while the Center Point Fire Department responded with two trucks and four personnel.


Fire fighters remained on the scene until about 9:30.






The 2015 Sevier County Relay for Life Dusk till Dawn event will be Friday, May 29th at the De Queen Sportsplex and this year, one group is raising funds by allowing the public to flock their friends.


Team member Emmy Bailey announced you can order a small, medium, large or ex-large flock of flamingos that will be placed on the lawn of your friend’s house or you can have a potted flamingo displayed on their desk at work.


She said the cost ranges from $10 to $50 dollars and the flock will remain in place for three days, unless they pay a flock removal fee.


Residents may also purchase anti-flocking insurance for $10 to ensure that no one flocks you.


To order a multicolored flock of flamingos, you should call Crystal at 580-306-7371 or if you want a flock of purple flamingos, call Bailey at 870-784-3053. You can also visit our website, to print an order form.


Bailey explained that for every $5 dollars that you spend on a flock of flamingos, you also get a luminary in honor of or in memory of someone that has fought the fight against cancer.


She stated luminary bags are $5 each and the tiki torches are $25.


Bailey said the fundraiser is a lot of fun, but the purpose is to raise funds for cancer research.


To register a team or to participate in the flamingo flocking, call 784-3053.






April 2nd, residents in Sevier County will have the opportunity to donate to the Sevier County Museum during the event.


Museum board member Jim Bo Arnold stated the museum was the only non-profit organization participating this year and if enough residents donate online, the museum will receive a bonus amount based on that percentage of donors.


Arnold said if you don’t have a computer, you can stop by the museum between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m. and they will help you make a donation of $25 dollars or more.


Arnold announced the museum board was also organizing another blue grass festival and some summer programs for kids.


Arnold said it’s not the De Queen museum, it’s the Sevier County Museum and they have exhibits representing the entire county.


He said the board also wants to expand some of the existing exhibits, like the HO scale model train area and finish the stage area, while offering new programs that the community will enjoy.


To make an online donation to support the Sevier County Museum, visit the website, and make a donation of $25 or more between the hours of 8 a.m. and 8 p.m. on Thursday, April 2nd.






The Arkansas Highway Commission has set uniform speed limits for all drivers on the state's interstates and rural freeways.


The speed limit had been 65 miles per hour for large trucks and 70 miles per hour for cars. Now the speed limit is 70 miles per hour for all vehicles on those highways.


The Highway Commission announced they based their decision on a review and recommendation by the Arkansas Highway Transportation Department staff. The Arkansas Highway Department said the change came about because the different speed limits did not have an impact on safety.





The De Queen Lady Leopards are off to an undefeated start this season and Coach Tracy Nealy is asking the community to show their support by purchasing banners that will be displayed along the outfield fence.


Nealy said the banners are $300 the first year, but can be renewed next season for $150.


Nealy explained the team is raising funds for a wind screen, total control balls, printed line up cards, a new pitching machine, batter mats and sock nets.


For more information about the banner program or to place an order call, James Williams at 582-1909, Lisa Miller at 784-0178 or Gathy Bakenhus at 784-1575.


Lady Leopard players are also selling chicken dinner plates for $8 each. Nealy stated if you buy four plates, you'll get one free on Friday, April 3rd.






The 3rd Annual Devoe Bollinger, Jr. Memorial Golf Tournament is scheduled for Saturday, April 4th at the Texarkana Golf Ranch in Texarkana and event organizer Charlotte Izzo explained the tournament raises funds for the Devoe Bollinger, Jr. Memorial Scholarship and for upgrades to Lane Field.


Izzo stated Morgan Smith was the first recipient of the scholarship and last year, it was presented to Devoe Bollinger's grandson, Jordan Izzo who is currently playing baseball for the Southern Arkansas University Muleriders.


Izzo said her family started the tournament to support the scholarship because her dad felt a college education was important, but also to help make improvements to Lane Field because her dad enjoyed watching Horatio baseball.


Check-in for the tournament will begin at 11 a.m., and will continue until the shot-gun start at 1 p.m.


Izzo said if you sign up to participate in the golf tournament, she can promise you two things: one, your contribution will be used for a great cause and the time you spend at the Texarkana Golf Ranch will be filled with amazing food, fellowship and the opportunity to play golf on a premier course.


For more information, about the 3rd Annual Devoe Bollinger, Jr. Memorial Golf Tournament visit the website: or like the Devoe Bollinger, Jr. Memorial Golf Tournament Facebook page.






Wednesday evening, the Arkansas House of Representatives passed a bill known as the Arkansas Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act. District 4 Representative Vaught explained the bill creates an Arkansas Workforce Development Board which will work to align workforce development programs with the needs of growing businesses.


Vaught said the House passed a bill that would create accountability in the establishment of prescription drug pricing. The bill also prohibits pharmacy benefit managers from reimbursing a pharmacy or pharmacist an amount that is less than the amount they would charge their own affiliate.


Local pharmacist Renee Logan traveled to Little Rock recently and testified before a Legislative committee concerning the PBM's. She explained that many privately owned pharmacies have been losing money in recent years due to reduced reimbursements that are being recommended by the pharmacy benefit managers.





April 12th through the 18th is National Library Week and this year’s theme is “Unlimited Possibilities @ Your Library.”

National Library Week has been sponsored by the American Library Association every April since 1958. And, it’s a time to celebrate the contributions of our nation’s libraries and librarians and to promote the use of local libraries.

David Baldacci is this year’s Honorary Chair. He is the author of 29 bestselling novels for adults, with over 110 million copies sold. Recently, he wrote “The Finisher”, his first fantasy novel for young readers.

Head Librarian of the Sevier County Library System, Johnye Fisher announced the De Queen Library would be holding a contest during National Library Week. Fisher said all you have to do is tell the library staff which Baldacci book you like the best and you will be entered to win a gift box.

The De Queen Library is open from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m., Monday through Friday and from 9 a.m. until noon on Saturdays.

The Horatio Library will be spotlighting the classics of Aesop to Virgil and the modern classics Jane Austin’s “Pride and Prejudice” and Harold Bell Wright’s “Shepherd of the Hills.”

The Lockesburg Book Club will meet at 10 a.m. on April 4th to discuss the book, “The Grace of Silence” by Michele Norris of National Public Radio fame.

The Lockesburg Library borrows book sets of 12 from the Arkansas Center for The Book at the Arkansas State Library for its book club. Once a month, a new book is received to be read, discussed and returned.

According to the Lockesburg librarian there are currently two spaces available for new members.

Fisher stated the Gillham Library has received a box of children’s book from Judy Driver and the Ben Lomond Library will be making confetti eggs for the community Easter program this Saturday and they will be watching the movie “The Adventures of Brer Rabbit.” They are also selling chances on two big Easter baskets. 





Howard County authorities have identified the man that broke into several buildings on the Dierks School campus as 37-year-old James Alsup of Rison.

Alsup is also accused of breaking into the Greene County Tech School in Paragould.

The Dierks Elementary and High Schools were broken into Saturday morning sometime between two and 4:45 a.m.

The only thing that was known to be missing Monday morning was an undetermined amount of money from a vending machine. However, Alsup was seen on the school surveillance video, breaking the glass out of the of high school office door.

Howard County Sheriff Bryan McJunkins says warrants are being prepared for multiple charges of commercial burglary and theft of property against Alsup.

Alsup was paroled from the Arkansas Department of Corrections in November of 2014.

Video screenshots provided by authorities showed Alsup driving a stolen truck from the Buffalo Island Central High School FFA.

The incident, on the Dierks school campuses, is being investigated by the Howard County Sheriff’s Office and the Dierks Police Department.

If you have any information concerning Alsup’s whereabouts, you are being asked to contact the Howard County Sheriff’s office at 870-845-2626.





The body of a missing Ashley County man has been found near Gurdon.

The Clark County Sheriff's Office confirmed that 24-year-old Wesley Livingston was found late Tuesday night, after being reported missing just over two weeks ago.


According to the sheriff's office, initial indications were that Livingston's death was self-inflicted and his body has been sent to the Arkansas State Crime Lab for an autopsy.


Livingston was reported missing after he was last seen around noon on March 10th from the Georgia Pacific mill in Gurdon.


Family and friends of Livingston posted messages on Facebook, asking for prayers and seeking the public’s assistance in locating him. Several sightings of Livingston were reported on Facebook and other social media sites, including a report from Little River County, in the days following his disappearance.






Saturday night, the Cossatot Volunteer Fire Department will be hosting their annual membership drive and BBQ dinner. Board member Linda Frachiseur stated they will start serving at 5 p.m., but the band Harmony will start performing around 4:30.


Frachiseur stated they will have a variety of auction items from area businesses, but she said if you need any more information you could call her at 584-9592 or Katrina Frachiseur at 642-5569.


Frachiseur said all of the firefighters of the Cossatot Volunteer Fire Department appreciated everyone's support and she stated the funds would be used to upgrade equipment and to provide training.






De Queen/Sevier County Chamber of Commerce President Susan Alspaw mentioned Wednesday morning that the chamber would be hosting its annual Egg Hunt on Saturday, April 4th at the De Queen Sportsplex at 1 p.m.


Alspaw said children would be divided into three age categories: from toddlers to 2-years old; ages 3 to 5; and age 6 through the 3rd grade. She also said the Easter bunny would be on hand for photos. Pictures cost $3 each.


Alspaw stated they were moving the egg hunt from the Sevier County Courthouse square to the Sportsplex. She said they will be hiding eggs on fields 2 and 3.


Alspaw said prizes would be awarded in all three age categories and chamber members can donate items such as filled Easter baskets, stuffed animals or bags of candy by Wednesday, April 1st at the KDQN studios or at Bear State Bank.


For more information call Patty Sharp at 584-3225.






The Arkansas Game and Fish Commission's "Mandatory Hunter Education" regulation went into effect July 1st, 1985. The regulation makes it unlawful for any person born after December 31st, 1968, to take or attempt to take wildlife with firearms, crossbow, or conventional bow, without first having on their person proof that he or she has satisfactorily completed an approved Hunter Education Course.


The exceptions to this regulation are those hunters whose birth dates are prior to 1969, and hunters less than 16 years of age when under the direct supervision of a licensed adult at least 21 years of age.


If you were born after December 31st, 1968, or if you are just a concerned sportsman or wildlife enthusiast, plan to attend the Hunter Education Course that is being offered on Saturday, April 4th at the Crater of Diamonds State Park-Pavilion in Murfreesboro from 8 a.m. until 7 p.m. with a one hour lunch.


You must attend all class sessions to complete the course.


The course includes such topics as firearms safety, conservation, wildlife management, sportsmanship, archery, muzzleloading, first aid and survival, and other hunting information.


The purpose of the course is to inform and educate those enjoying the great outdoors which will lead to safer and more responsible behavior by all outdoorsmen throughout the state.


The course is free, but space is limited to 25 students, so call the Crater of Diamonds State Park to reserve your seat by calling 870-285-3113 between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m.


For information about other Hunter Education Courses that have been scheduled in the area, call the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission Hunter Education Office at 1-800-482-5795.






The annual Lockesburg Spring Festival will be this Saturday beginning at 9 a.m. in the Ida Margaret Coulter Stone Park and car show organizer Jo Anna said there's a category for any kind of car you drive in this year's car show including: 1939 and older; 1940 to 1949; 1950 to 1959; 1960 to 1969; 1970 to 1979; 1980 to 1999 and 2000 and newer.


The registration fee is $15 in advance or $20 the day of the show and Jo Anna said you can stop by the Lockesburg City Hall if you want to register.


Jo Anna noted there will be door prizes and the proceeds from the car show will go toward the upkeep and upgrades to the park.


She also mentioned there would be games for the kids, an egg hunt and food and craft vendors.


Park Commissioner Sheila Ruth announced Tuesday night; the co-ed softball tournament has been canceled due to field conditions.


To sign up as a vendor, contact the Lockesburg City Hall at 870-289-3261. The cost is $10 for craft vendors that don't need electricity or $50 if you are a food vendor or need electricity. 






A public information meeting has been scheduled in Ashdown by the Arkansas Natural Resources Commission to explain the process that will be followed in the development of a watershed-based management plan for the Lower Little River.


Over the course of the next 16 to 18 months, the agency will development a voluntary watershed-based management plan that is designed to help reduce non-point pollution.


The purpose of the plan is to provide a framework for landowners, communities and qualifying organizations that want to voluntarily participate in the watershed program to be able to apply for grants from the Arkansas Natural Resources Commission and other sources and undertake projects.


The meeting in Ashdown will be April 6th in the Millwood Room on the Ashdown campus of UA Cossatot at 10 a.m.


Farmers, ranchers, and other watershed landowners, community leaders and representatives of groups and agencies interested in the watershed are encouraged to attend the meeting.


There will be several other public meetings during the development of the Lower Little River Watershed-Based Management Plan.


For more information, call the Arkansas Natural Resource Commission at 501-682-1611.





Saturday afternoon, Sergeant Chad Bradshaw of the De Queen Police Department was dispatched to a residence on Locke Street in reference to an unwanted person.


When Bradshaw arrived, he noticed 61-year-old Joe Maxwell sitting on the curb in the parking lot.


Bradshaw went to 180 West Locke and spoke with Betty Neal who reported she wanted Maxwell to stay away from her house.


As Bradshaw was informing Maxwell that Neal didn't want him there, he noticed Maxwell's speech was slurred and that he was unsteady on his feet when he stood up.


Maxwell reportedly informed Bradshaw that he was drunk.


Bradshaw then transported Maxwell to the Sevier County jail and charged him with public intoxication.


Saturday night about 9 p.m., Patrolman Bucky Sawyer observed a vehicle fail to stop at a stop sign.


As Sawyer turned around to make a traffic stop, the vehicle pulled out on Collin Raye Drive and started swerving from the turn lane back to the inside lane.


When Sawyer stopped the vehicle, he noted the driver, 54-year-old Edward Drent, had watery eyes. Sawyer also noticed a bottle of Segrams 7 lying beside his leg.


When Drent was asked how much he had to drink, Drent reportedly said just a little, but it was early.


Drent was administered a series of field sobriety test and he then registered .148 on the portable breath test devise.


Drent was charged with driving while intoxicated.


Then Sunday morning at about 2:30 a.m., Sawyer and Sevier County Sheriff's Deputy Greg Davignon conducted a traffic stop on a SUV that had driven left of center several times.


When Sawyer asked the driver, 19-year-old Luis Fernando, if he had been drinking, he responded no, however, Sawyer reported Fernando's eyes were glassy, bloodshot and watery.


Fernando was administered a portable breath test, which resulted in a .084. Fernando was then taken into custody and charged with driving while intoxicated.


Officers also arrested a passenger, 19-year-old Cristian Mar for public intoxication.






Dr. Michael Herts of Chosen People Ministries will be presenting the Messiah in the Passover on Sunday, March 29th at 10:45 a.m. at the First Baptist Church in Lockesburg.


The Messiah in the Passover is a vivid and exciting demonstration, showing how Jesus fulfilled the ancient feast of the Passover.


Chosen People Ministries is an over 100-year-old mission that was founded in 1894 by Leopold Cohn who was a Hungarian rabbi who came to believe that Jesus is the Messiah that was promised in the Hebrew Scriptures.


Messiah in the Passover begins with the traditional Passover table, complete with all the articles of this important Jewish celebration. The speaker will explain the symbolic meanings of the various items of the Passover feast and highlight their relationship to the Last Supper that Messiah celebrated with the disciples, giving special emphasis on the redemptive significance of the crucifixion.


Messiah in the Passover gives the Christian community insight into Jewish traditions so that the Jewish roots of Christianity can be better understood. This also helps the Jewish and Christian communities understand their common heritage.


The public is invited. For more information, contact the church at 870-289-2121.






47-year-old Winston Wright of Kaufman, Texas died Monday morning at about 2:45 a.m. when the 2014 Kenworth truck that he was driving struck the railing on the northbound side of the Little River Relief Bridge just south of the Little River.


According to the incident report from the Arkansas State Police, the truck then crossed the road and stuck the railing on the southbound side of the bridge before coming to a stop.


Wright was pronounced dead at the scene by Little River County Deputy Coroner Lindsey Gwinn.






Work on the old Lockesburg High School is moving along and UA Cossatot is not only renovating the campus, but recycling school property.


Barry Reed is the Ashdown and Lockesburg site coordinator and he informed KDQN that Cossatot donated the fuel tanks that were on the Lockesburg campus to the Sevier County Farmer's Co-op.


Sevier County Co-Op Board member, Kenneth Currence, helped remove the tanks and reported they were in excellent condition.


Reed said UA Cossatot will continue to look for items to donate to area groups, like the books that they donated to the Lockesburg branch of the Sevier County Library System.  Reed said they are also planning to hold a rummage sale in the near future, so area residents can own something from the old high school.


Reed also stated the college was making upgrades to the Lockesburg campus, but most of them are underground.


Reed said the college plans to offer pipe welding and truck driving classes on the Lockesburg campus.


For more information, about the Lockesburg campus project contact Reed at 870-584-4471.







For over 27 years, Wal-Mart stores and Sam's Club stores have supported the Children's Miracle Network Hospitals by raising more than $750 million dollars.


According to the management staff at the De Queen Wal-Mart, they raised over $14,000 last year and over $46,000 in the last five years.


Last year, the De Queen Wal-Mart hosted its first bass tournament and after its success, they decided to make it an annual event.


This year, Ron Mills and Justin Stewart are helping coordinate the event.


Mills and Stewart explained, this year, they will not only hold a bass tournament, but they will have a kid's tournament as well.


Mills stated the kid’s tournament will be held on the bank and will cost $5 to enter.


Stewart said the entry fee is $50 per person and $10 to enter the big bass contest, but if you register by April 9th, you can save $5 per person.


Mills explained the tournament will benefit the Arkansas Children's Hospital, which is a member of the Children's Miracle Network and you can register at 5 S Outdoors or call Mills at 784-2890 or Stewart at 584-2167.


Ashdown FFAers Treat Faculty to Omelets during FFA Week  03/24/15

Ashdown High School FFA students broke a lot of eggs on March 4! As a matter of fact, eight dozen of them! They treated everyone on the staff of the high school (and a few other extras!) to cooked-from-scratch omelets in recognition of National FFA Week.  Cody Gallagher and his FFA kids are always doing something productive!

It takes a lot of patience to make the perfect omelet!

It also takes a lot of eggs to make a lot of omelets!  Just ask Aubrey Burchfield!

Abby Burchfield and Madison Kidd get really good at omelet making -- after the first 20 or so!

Staff at AHS get to choose their own ingredients to add to their delicious, fresh omelets, cooked up and served by the FFA students

 FFA students who cooked and served all of the staff at Ashdown High School are (left to right) Rebecca Wood, Abby Burchfield, Colton Ard, Madison Kidd, Maddie McAllister, Chelsie Stewart, Dustin Hill, Caitlin Caskey, and Makenna Kuykendall.  The Ashdown FFA is sponsored by Cody Gallagher.




Cossatot River State Park is offering several programs this week during Arkansas' Spring Break.


Tuesday afternoon, Interpreter Andrew Rawlings will lead a springtime hike along the Harris Creek Trail to discover what's growing in the park from 2 to 3 p.m.


Wednesday from 10 to 11 a.m., Rawlings will lead a morning stroll along the Waterleaf Trail and from 1 to 2 p.m. Guests may join Rawlings for a walk along the oldest mountain range in North America, the Ouachita Mountains. Then, from 3 to 4 p.m. Rawlings will teach what makes up a river and explain what parts of the river are good for. The river in review event will include a leisurely walk around the low water bridge.


Thursday morning from 9 to 10 a.m., the park will be offering a class on how Arkansas history and black bears are related. Interpreter Shelley Flanary will then lead a nature hike from 1 to 4 p.m. along the Cossatot River.


Then on Friday from 9 a.m. until noon, guest can experience outdoor cooking at its best during the Dutch oven workshop.


For more information about programs and events at the Cossatot River State Park, call 870-385-2201. 






Tiffany Bowen and Kristy Frachiseur announced last week, that the Cossatot River Agri and Athletic Boosters are sponsoring a donkey basketball game in the old Hatfield gym on Saturday, April 18th at 5 p.m.


Frachiseur stated FFA advisors from Mena and Cossatot River would be competing against the Cossatot River basketball coaches.


Bowen said tickets will be $8 at the door but you can save $2 dollars by purchasing tickets in advance from a booster member, at all Union Bank locations, Razorback Discount and Bear State Bank.






District 4 Representative DeAnn Vaught reported the Arkansas House of Representatives passed a bill last week that could implement the first of its kind school safety network in the country.


The bill passed the House on an unanimous vote.


The bill would require the creation of an app that teachers and school employees would use in the event of an emergency, by pressing one button to contact emergency services, including medical emergencies involving a student or school shootings.


If activated, the Smart 911 system would then alert all teachers and staff in the school of the situation.


The bill would also require that all emergency responders be equipped with floor plans of every school in their district.


Vaught said if the bill passes the Senate and is signed by the governor, the system should be fully implemented by September of this year.


House members passed a bill that requires 7th through 12th grade health courses to offer a section on dating violence. The course would teach characteristics of a healthy relationship and teach definitions of dating violence and abuse.


Vaught said the House also passed House Bill 1599 which requires law enforcement agencies to give suspected victims of domestic violence a document known as "Laura's Card."


The card will contain information about victim's rights and a list of available medical, housing, counseling and financial services.






De Queen High School senior Harmoney Rich has received the Distinguished Freshman Scholarship from Henderson State University for the 2015 Fall semester.


The scholarship is valued at $14,500 per year for a total of $58,000.


Rich is the daughter of Ramona Driver of Gillham and Kelly Rich of Horatio.


Rich plans to attend HSU and major in human resources. She is a member of the De Queen Student Council, the National Honor Society, Future Business Leaders of America, Future Teachers of America, Interact Club, and the De Queen Lady Leopard track team. Rich is also the Senior Class President and Vice-President of the National Honor Society.






Move America Forward is asking for donations to send Easter Care Packages to service men and women who are serving in Afghanistan and Iraq.


Currently there are about 15,000 troops serving in Afghanistan and 3,000 American military members are training the Iraqi army to confront ISIS.


According to Move America Forward, the Easter holiday means spring is upon us and every year in Afghanistan, the down-season of winter ends and the warming spring season melts away the snow in the mountain ranges. And when spring and summer arrive, the Taliban come out of their caves and renew their attacks.


So, Move America Forward is encouraging Americans to let our troops know they have not been forgotten.


The care packages will contain candy, cookies, drinks, towels and other personal hygiene items, CDs, "Support the Troops" wristbands and a personal note.


To donate or to request a care package for a service man or woman, visit the website






Sevier County Museum board member Jim Arnold announced the museum would be participating in the Arkansas Gives event on April 2nd.


Arnold said if you don't have a computer, you can stop by the museum between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m. or visit the De Queen Public Library to make a donation of $25 or more.

Arnold stated the museum had several activities planned for the near future, like a gospel singing and a blue grass festival, as well as summer programs for kids and of course Hoo-Rah Days.


Arnold said the museum board has plans to expand some of the existing exhibits and to continue offering programs that interest area residents.


Arnold stated the museum will receive donations that designated for the museum along with bonus dollars based on the percentage of donations that are made from Sevier County.


The Arkansas Give program is sponsored by the Arkansas Community Foundation and you can help the museum meet its goals by donating between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m. on Thursday, April 2nd. 





A National Weather Service SKYWARN class has been set for March 24th in Ashdown.


The class will be held from 6 to 7:30 p.m. at the Little River County Courthouse. An advanced class will be held from 7:45 to 9 p.m.


SKYWARN is a volunteer program with nearly 290,000 trained severe-weather spotters. These volunteers help keep their local communities safe by providing timely and accurate reports of severe weather to the National Weather Service.


The National Weather Service encourages anyone with an interest in public service and access to communication, such as HAM radio, to join the program.


The training will cover the basics of thunderstorm development; the fundamentals of storm structure; how to identifying potential severe-weather features and basic severe-weather safety.


The classes are free and are typically about two hours long.






Spring is right around the corner and we're starting to see Easter baskets, candy and stuffed animals in area stores and if you enjoy seeing children hunting eggs, the De Queen/Sevier County Chamber of Commerce would like to invite you to their annual Egg Hunt.


This year's hunt will be held on Saturday, April 4th at the De Queen Sportsplex on fields 2 and 3 beginning at 1 p.m.


The hunt is free and will be divided into three age groups: children walking age through two years; ages 3 to 5; and ages 6 through 3rd grade. Children will be required to hunt for eggs by themselves and the Easter Bunny will be on hand to pose for photos with your child for $3.


If you or your business would like to donate items like filled Easter baskets, stuffed animals, or bags of candy to give as prizes. You can drop your donation off at Bear State Bank or the KDQN studios by Wednesday, April 1st.






During the March meeting of the Cossatot River School District, board members approved next year's school calendar after adding make up dates to this school year.


Superintendent Donnie Davis reported the board considered adding a hour a day for 18 days, however, they voted to add most of the make up days to the end of the school year.


Davis said the board approved the 2015-2016 school calendar, but teachers have asked them to reconsider their decision.


Board members accepted several resignations and re-assigned some teachers before re-hiring the district's certified staff. Davis stated some of the resignations were because teachers were changing career paths.


The next meeting of the Cossatot River Board of Education will be Thursday, April 9th at 6 p.m. in the administration building.






Last week, Victor Rojas, Jr. visited the state Capitol and testified before the Senate Education Committee concerning school safety.


Rojas stated that he is working with Senator Larry Teague of Nashville to ensure that all school districts are conducting the required safety drills and following state law concerning weapons on campus.


Rojas said he had spoken with the superintendent of the Pulaski County Special School District about students being expelled for having guns on campus.


Rojas is also encouraging law makers to require school districts to provide a section on dating violence in Health class.


Rojas said it was important that districts have polices in place that will allow them to adequately report and handle allegations of sexual assault.


That bill was passed by the House of Representatives on Friday.


Rojas serves on the Arkansas Coalition for Juvenile Justice Board.






According to LifeShare Blood Center's donor recruiter, Karen Siefert, LifeShare has a critical need for o-negative blood donations.


Siefert explained that O-negative is a universal donor and LifeShare has experienced a decline in donations due to the winter weather, but patient needs have increased.


Tina Hooper is a spokesperson with LifeShare and she reported in a press release that at least five area hospitals have patients currently using O-negative blood.


The press release stated that less than seven percent of the population is O-negative, which makes every donor vital.


Siefert stated that even though there is a need for O-negative blood, donors with other blood types are being encouraged to donate.


Here locally, donors can donate during a blood drive Monday at the De Queen Regional Medical Center from noon until 4 p.m. or in the Dierks Community on Friday, March 27th from 2:30 to 7:30 p.m. If you are in the Nashville area, you may donate Sunday, March 29th at the Sunset Church of Christ from noon until 5 p.m.


For more information, call 903-794-3173.






One lane of Highway 32 across Millwood Lake will be closed from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. on Tuesday, March 24th to allow crews to inspect the bridge.


Officials at the Army Corps of Engineers Millwood Project Office stated they regret any inconvenience this may cause and ask for the public's cooperation during the closure.


If you are traveling in this area, you can expect delays. You’re also being asked to obey flagmen and to drive cautiously around equipment and work crews.


The closure is being coordinated with emergency services and law enforcement agencies, but for more information call 870-898-3343.






The Sevier County Relay for Life event is scheduled for Friday, May 29th at the De Queen Sportsplex and one group is raising funds by allowing the public to flock their friends.


Emmy Bailey said you can order a small, medium, large or even an extra-large flock of 10 to 40 flamingos to be placed in the yard of a friend or business.


Bailey said flocks will be available for placement through the day of the Relay for Life event.


For a multi-color flock, call Crystal at 580-306-7371 or for a purple flock; call Bailey at 870-784-3053.


Bailey explained that for every $5 dollars that you spend on flocking your friends, you will also receive a luminary to dedicate in honor of or in memory of someone.


Bailey said funds are used for research and they need more teams to help raise funds here in Sevier County.


Bailey stated if you or someone you know is diagnosed with cancer that you may contact the American Cancer Society with any questions you may have.


For more information about the Sevier County Relay for Life or to register a team, call Bailey at 784-3053.



#1 Country KDQN is auctioning off two sets of tickets to the NASCAR April races at Texas Motor Speedway in Arlington, TX, April 9th through 11th.

Each set contains two (2) VIP Pit Passes to get you down in the pits up close and personal.  VIP Pit Passes are good all three days April 9th through 11th.  You’ll also receive two (2) tickets for the O’Reilly Auto Parts 300 NASCAR XFINITY Series on Friday, April 10th, and two (2) tickets for the NASCAR Duck Commander 500 Sprint Cup Series race on Saturday, April 11th.

Bidding on first set of tickets closes at 12 noon Friday, March 27th, and on the second set of tickets at 12 noon Friday, April 3rd.

Click here go to the NASCAR Race Weekend page for more information.  E-mail your bid to or call your bid in to our studios between 8 am - 4 pm Monday-Friday.





The De Queen Police Department answered a call to the Dollar General Store in De Queen Thursday at 7:25 pm.

Twenty-one year old Jona Amran of De Queen was the driver of the Chevy SUV that ran through the front of the store. 

Three people were inside the store.  One person was transported to De Queen Medical Center by Southwest EMS for treatment of injuries.







Thursday evening, March 19th about 7:25 p.m., a vehicle ran into the De Queen Dollar General Store.


Patrolman Bucky Sawyer of the De Queen Police Department was dispatched to the store and discovered a 2001 Chevy Suburban inside the store.


The driver, 20-year-old Jona Amram, reported that she was applying the brake when her foot slipped off the brake and hit the gas causing the vehicle to suddenly move forward, hitting the building.


Assistant Manager Bryson Mendoza and store employee Gailan Sharp were in the store at the time of the incident along with a customer, Olivia Martinez.


Martinez was transported to the De Queen Regional Medical Center by Southwest EMS with a possible arm injury, however, neither Mendoza nor Sharp were transported for any injuries.


Amram was citied for failure to register and for not having a driver's license.


According to the incident report, the building received about $25,000 in damages and the Dollar General Store will be closed for an undisclosed period of time.





Special Olympics Arkansas will be hosting 50 teams for the 2015 State Basketball Tournament this weekend in Russellville. Southwest Arkansas will be represented by students from Ashdown High School and two adult groups from the Howard County Children and Adult Center in Nashville and Rainbows of Challenges in Hope.


Games will be held on the campuses of Russellville High School, Junior High and the Russellville Boys and Girls Club.


The competition will consist of both traditional Special Olympics Basketball and Project Unify schools competing in Unified Sports Basketball.


Project UNIFY builds and strengthens partnerships between local Special Olympics Programs and participating schools to create “Project UNIFY Schools.” Through Project UNIFY, young people with or without intellectual disabilities are integrated. They play side-by-side on sports teams and come together to discuss topics such as reversing negative stereotypes.


Ashdown Special Education teacher Elisha Stone informed KDQN that she is the advisor of the Ashdown Unify program, but they will not be competing this weekend, however, the Ashdown Special Olympics team will be competing and this is Stone’s first state-wide basketball competition.


Stone said divisioning will begin at 2 p.m. on Friday with tournament competition directly to follow and the public is invited to come out and support all of the Special Olympians. The tournament will continue on Saturday beginning at 8:30 a.m. and should conclude around 2 p.m.






Tuesday evening about 10:30, Patrolman Nicole Nealy and Patrolman First Class Wayne Baker were dispatched to the trailer park on Cottonwood in reference to a woman banging on the door of a trailer.


Carlos Contreras reported 31-year-old Summer Swim appeared to be intoxicated and was banging on his door.


When officers arrived, they observed Swim standing on the porch of Cottonwood trailer 135 with an empty bag of flour in her hands and a container of bologna spilled on the stairs.


Officers noted Swim’s eyes were red and watery and her speech was slurred.


According to the report, when Swim was asked what she was doing, she allegedly stated she was there to see Contreras and cook him cubed steaks.


Swim was them arrested and charged with public intoxication.






Tuesday night during the regular meeting of the De Queen City Council, aldermen approved a resolution to retain Local Government Services to audit the city’s past franchise fee receipts and to negotiate the new agreement in February of 2016.


Mayor Billy Ray McKelvy stated Greg Fender's fee was $4,000 but if he recovers some past due fees or negotiates a better franchise agreement next year, it would benefit the city.


Aldermen tabled a resolution on the 2013 Legislative Audit, but passed an ordinance to reconcile the 2014 city budget.


McKelvy also reported the council passed a resolution to hold a public hearing on April 21st concerning the city vacating some streets around the Pilgrim's Pride processing plant.


Alderman also approved a resolution authorizing District Court Judge Steven Tedder to destroy some old records that have been maintained for the appropriate amount of time. They also reviewed four liens on property that the city condemned and cleaned up.


Aldermen also approved Fire Chief Dennis Pruitt's recommendation to appoint John Gass as a member of the De Queen Volunteer Fire Department.






It's National Ag Week and in Southwest Arkansas poultry is a major contributor to the economy with one in four agricultural jobs being related to poultry, egg production and processing. It also provides one in every four dollars of agricultural labor income.


In Arkansas, there are over 36,000 people employed in the poultry industry.


Here in Southwest Arkansas, poultry workers are employed by or on contract with one of two corporations.


Pilgrim's Pride has over 4,000 family farms throughout the United States and processes more than 34 million birds per week, totaling more than 7 billion pounds of chicken every year.


Here in De Queen, Pilgrim's Pride employs about 1,300 people at the processing plant, which generates $91 million dollars a year in payroll income, contract grower payments, utilities and state taxes.


Pilgrim's Pride has 260 contract growers throughout Southwest Arkansas and Southeast Oklahoma, as well as a hatchery and feed mill in Nashville.


According to the Poultry Federation, Arkansas ranks 2nd in the nation for pounds of chicken produced and Sevier County ranks 5th in the state.


A spokesperson from Pilgrim's Pride stated the company had been in Sevier County since 1954 and they plan to be a fixture in the community for another 60 years or more. The spokesperson said they feel they help others, because they feed people.






UA Cossatot Chancellor Dr. Steve Cole announced the University Of Arkansas Board Of Trustee approved Cossatot’s plan to close its bookstore during their quarterly meeting this week.


Cole stated this will make UA Cossatot an even better value for its students.


Cole said by using open resources it will save students money and if the class requires a textbook, the college will rent it to the students for no more than $30 a semester.


Cole said UA Cossatot’s goal is to make earning an education more affordable and this new program is a step in the right direction.


Cole said they will start the new program this fall, but a two for one program will begin during the summer sessions.


To register for classes at UA Cossatot, contact the admissions office by calling 1-800-844-4471.






About 3:20, Tuesday afternoon, officers with the De Queen Police Department were dispatched to Coulter Drive to take an accident report.


When officers arrived, they interviewed Linda Quinn who was traveling East on Coulter Drive. She reported that she had to slow down to stop because the traffic was stopping in front of her.


Quinn reported that as she slowed down her Toyota Camry was struck from behind by a 2011 Chevy pickup.


The minor driver of the truck then panicked and left the scene of the accident.


A short time later, officers located the pickup as the driver was pulling into a driveway on DeQuincy Ave.


After interviewing the minor driver, he was cited for leaving the scene of an accident and for not having a driver’s license.  







Local pharmacist and business owner, Renee Logan, said the Arkansas Legislature is considering a trio of bills that could have a major impact on her business and she will be traveling to Little Rock this week to testify before a state Senate committee about the bills.


Logan told KDQN the bills involve the regulation of Pharmacy Benefit Managements, which are called PBMs who control what pharmacists are paid by insurance companies.


Logan said Senate Bill 688 would require PBMs to update their refund rates every week and require them to provide their formulas for reimbursements.


Logan said residents could go to to email senators and representatives concerning these bills.




MAYHAW 101 CLINIC      3/19/15


This Saturday, Paul McLaughlin and the Louisiana Mayhaw Association will be holding the 3rd Annual Mayhaw 101 Clinic in El Dorado and McLaughlin explained what the purpose to educate people about mayhaws.


McLaughlin stated that they were adding several different things this year, like moving the clinic to the El Dorado Convention Center as well as a cooking contest.


Jackie McLaughlin stated the overall winner will receive $250. To enter, she said they would need to provide two copies to their recipe, one with your name and one without. Jackie said the contest rules are on the website


McLaughlin said after the clinic, participates can take a tour at the Moro Bay State Park to see mayhaw trees in the wild and mayhaw trees and other items will be on sale at Paul's mayhaw orchard during the orchard tour.


For more information about the 3rd Annual Mayhaw 101 Clinic call 870-814-9168.






One lane of Highway 32 across Millwood Lake will be closed from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. on Tuesday, March 24th to allow crews to inspect the bridge.


Officials at the Army Corps of Engineers Millwood Project Office stated they regret any inconvenience this may cause and ask for the public's cooperation during the closure.


If you are traveling in this area, you can expect delays. They are also asking motorist to obey the flagmen and to drive cautiously around equipment and work crews.


The closure is being coordinated with emergency services and law enforcement agencies, but for more information call 870-898-3343.






Public School Choice in Arkansas allows students to attend a public school in a district other than the one in which they reside, but they must file an application by June 1st, 2015, in order to qualify for provisions under the Arkansas Public School Choice Act of 2013.


Pursuant to standards adopted, a nonresident district may reserve the right to accept or reject applicants based on capacity of programs, class, grade level or school building.


Likewise, a nonresident district's standards may provide for rejection of an applicant based upon the submission of false or misleading information to the above listed request for information when that information directly impacts the legal qualifications of an applicant to transfer pursuant to the School Choice Act. However, a nonresident district's standards shall not include an applicant's previous academic achievement, athletic or other extracurricular ability, handicapping conditions, English proficiency level, or previous disciplinary proceedings, except that an expulsion from another district may be included pursuant of Arkansas law.


Priority will be given to applicants with siblings attending the district.


The nonresident district shall accept credits toward graduation that were awarded by another district and award a diploma to a nonresident district's graduation requirements.


Applications must be postmarked or delivered to the Superintendent of Schools no later than June 1st for a child to be able to enroll for the fall semester. Transfers shall be granted on a nondiscriminatory basis. Students who have been accepted and enrolled in previous years do not have to reapply as approved transfers remain valid for as long as the student attends public school.


The following districts comply with this announcement: Ashdown, Caddo Hills, Cossatot River, De Queen, Dierks, Foreman, Horatio, Mena, Mineral Springs, Mount Ida, Nashville and Ouachita River.





Sevier County will celebrate with crazy socks on Friday        3/19/15


Stephanie Lynch has two daughters with Down Syndrome and she stopped the KDQN studios this week to encourage the residents of De Queen to wear crazy socks this Friday along with the students of the De Queen Primary to help raise awareness for people with Down Syndrome.


Lynch said Romine Oil Company and TJ's would be holding a gas give-a-way on Friday, but the only way you will be eligible is by wearing crazy socks. She said you could post a photo on the Romine Oil Facebook page or go inside TJs and show them your crazy or miss-matched socks.


So, whether you wear crazy socks on Friday or not, take the opportunity to support those with Down Syndrome.







Last week during the March meeting of the Ashdown Board of Education, Superintendent Jason Sanders updated the board on some legislation that is being considered in Little Rock.


Sanders told KDQN that some of these bills will have an impact on education in the state for the next 10 years.


Sanders said some of the private or charter school bills could effect funding for public schools.


Sanders also mentioned the district was working with UA Cossatot in an attempt to offer three courses of study on the Little River campus of Cossatot to benefit the students of Ashdown High School.


Board members voted to accept Sanders recommendation to expel two junior high students for the remainder of this semester and the fall semester of the 2015-2016 school year.


Board members approved the purchase of 45 HP Chromebooks and 45 Google Chrome Management programs and approved the roof renovation project at the high school.


Sanders also reported that the board accepted the resignation of high school Principal Tim Erwin.


The next meeting of the Ashdown Board of Education is scheduled for Monday, April 13th at 6 p.m. in the district's Support Services Building.






Lockesburg city officials announced Monday morning that the USDA had approved the city for additional funds for the city's waste water project.


During the March meeting of the Lockesburg City Council, aldermen voted to accept the bid of Kampco in the amount of $630,263.16 if the USDA approved the city's request for additional grant money.


City officials said the waste water project will now precede along the water project which has suffered some delays do to the recent inclement weather.


Robin Rice of A.L. Franks Engineering reported that she had requested some adjustments to the Arkansas Highway and Transportation Department in connection with the city's sidewalk project.


Rice said she had added some flat and asphalt for the park and the walking bridge along with lighting for the walking bridge.


Rice reported the changes will cost about $440,900, which means the city's 20 percent of the project would cost about $185,337.50.


Fire Chief Doug Currence reported the volunteer fire department's new turnouts had arrived, but only five pair of boots came with the turnouts. So, they will be placing a future order for new boots.


Park Commissioner Shelia Ruth reported several venders had signed up for the Spring Festival and Car Show which will be held on Saturday, March 28th.


Aldermen also approved the bid from Air Magic Fireworks for the upcoming Fourth of July celebration in the Ida Margaret Coulter Stone Park. 




HIT AND RUN       3/18/15


On Friday, March 13th, Sergeant Gary Cunningham of the De Queen Police Department was dispatched to the Wal-Mart parking lot in reference to a hit and run accident.


According to the incident report, an eyewitness reported that he was sitting in his vehicle and saw a red pickup truck hit a white truck that was sitting in the parking lot. They reported the driver went into Wal-Mart and then left without notifying the owner of the other vehicle.


The witness also stated the red truck turned East on Highway 70/71.


A deputy with the Sevier County Sheriff's office stopped the vehicle near the De Queen Country Club and had them to return to the Wal-Mart parking lot.


The driver of the red truck was identified as Marion Rose and he reportedly told the officers that he knew he had hit the other vehicle but left because he didn't see any damage.




MISSING PERSON       3/18/15


A $5,000 reward is being offered for the safe return of 24-year-old Wesley Livingston. Livingston is the son of Terry and Mary Livingston of Hamburg.


According to fliers that have been posted throughout the area, Livingston was working at the mill in Gurdon on Tuesday, March 10th during a plant shut down.


According to his employer, Livingston's co-workers had finished lunch about 1 p.m. and were walking back to the job site when they saw him putting a bottle of Tylenol back in the truck. They reported he was complaining of a headache just prior to his disappearance.


Several people have reported they saw him in the Hope area and in the Ashdown area.


Livingston is 5'8" tall and weighs 175 lbs. When he left the mill, he was wearing jeans, a dark gray shirt, work boots, a yellow safety vest and a hard hat.


Friends and family are asking for the public's assistance from Gurdon to Ashdown, Foreman and Oklahoma.


Because Livingston may be confused or disoriented, authorities are asking you to simply keep a visual contact with him and to contact 911, but do not approach him.






Southwest Arkansas and the entire state is part of the southern pine-belt which extends from East Texas to the Carolinas.


According to a study that was initiated by Senator Blanche Lincoln, Arkansas ranks fourth in the production of timber and is one of the state's main cash crops.


And according to the latest stats from the University of Arkansas Division of Agriculture, over 24,000 people are employed in the forestry division and is the leading employer in South Arkansas. This includes log truck drivers, tree planting crews and people who work in the paper mills and sawmills.


The forestry industry also provides over $1.4 million dollars in annual wages.  


In Arkansas, there are 18.6 million acres that are planted in commercial timberland, providing timber for global companies like Weyerhaeuser and Domtar.


Weyerhaeuser is one of the world's largest forest product companies and employs people that grow, harvest and sell trees while manufacturing products from timber that is essential to everyday life.


Weyerhaeuser plants trees, manage forests, and harvest trees to make useful products. In 2013, Weyerhaeuser planted 72 million seedlings and they manage over 20 million acres of timberland throughout the United States.


Domtar is working to increase its use of certified fiber while decreasing the companies direct greenhouse gas emissions.


Domtar has been certified by the Forest Stewardship Council and follow the guidelines of the Sustainable Forestry Initiative to ensure that there will be timberland for future needs.


Arkansas forestry industry is also making improvements to their practices to maintain the state's natural resource in an effort to provide the products that we use everyday. 





Crews have begun renovation and clean up at the old Lockesburg High School.

UA Cossatot recently donated the fuel tanks previously used at Lockesburg High School to the Sevier County Co-Op in Lockesburg as part of the effort to clean and recycle the school property.

Pictured left is Kenneth Currence, Chairman of the Sevier County Co-Op Board helping remove the tanks, which were still in excellent condition.

The fuel tanks were previously used to provide fuel to the fleet of buses. Barry Reed, who serves as the UA Cossatot Director of the Ashdown and Lockesburg campuses is managing the removal of the tanks as well as the recycling efforts of the maintenance staff.


Photos courtesy of Alisha Lewis


YOU'VE BEEN FLOCKED!!!    03/18/15


The Sevier County Relay for Life Walk will be Friday, May 29th at the De Queen Sportsplex on Hwy 70 West.

One of the ways the group is raising funds this year is by allowing the public to “Flock” their friends.  You can order a Small, Medium, Large or Ex-Large Flock with ten to forty flamingos to be placed on your friend’s yard or at their business.  A potted flamingo is also available for office desks.  Prices range from $10 to $50 donation.  The flock will remain in place for three days. 

These flocks will be available for placement through May 29th.

If you want to guarantee you won’t get flocked, Anti-Flocking Insurance is available for $10 donation.

Call or text Crystal for multicolored flocks at (580) 306-7371, Emmy for purple flamingos at (870) 784-3053, or click here for an order form.

Emmy Bailey shows one of potted flamingos the Sevier County Relay for Life has available for you to send to your "favorite" person's office. 



NATIONAL AG WEEK       3/17/15


It's National Ag Week and March 18th is National Agriculture Day. This week, we will recognize and celebrate the abundance that we have that's provided by agriculture.


During this week, we attempt to provide our listeners with an understanding of how, fiber and renewable resource products are produced in our area.


We will also emphasize the role of agriculture in maintaining a strong economy. For instance, in Arkansas, agriculture accounted for $20.1 billion dollars to the Arkansas economy in 2012.


Arkansas' dependency on agriculture is greater than the surrounding states. Arkansas share of the state economy is 3.7 times greater than in Texas, 2.5 times greater than in Louisiana and 2.2 times greater than in Oklahoma.


Arkansas is also in the top 25 states in the production of 23 agricultural commodities.


Arkansas is number one in rice production, number two in broilers, number three in catfish, number four in cotton, cottenseed and turkeys. Arkansas is number 10 in chicken eggs, number 13 in beef cows, number 21 in hogs and pigs and number 22 in hay.


Arkansas had 44,600 farms on 13.8 million acres in 2013.


This week, we will spot light the beef industry, the poultry industry and the timber industry.






De Queen Regional Medical Center Administrator Jeremy Icenhower informed KDQN Monday morning that the hospital would be holding a brown bag special fundraiser for the family of Leslie Conn who is the manager of the hospital's radiology department.


Icenhower stated Conn's husband was accidentally shot in the face Sunday as he was removing a firearm from the gun safe in his home.


Icenhower said he was air lifted to St. Vincent's Hospital in Little Rock where he is in the Intensive Care Unit. Icenhower went on to say doctors expect him to recover, but it has put a huge financial burden on the family. So, the hospital staff decided to sell hamburgers and cheeseburgers along with chips and a dessert for $5 and donate the proceeds to the family.


Icenhower stated they will be taking orders until noon on Wednesday and they will deliver meals on Friday to Dierks, De Queen and Horatio and anywhere you can hear KDQN.


To place an order, call the hospital at 584-4111.





The Arkansas Natural Resources Commission and the Cossatot Conservation District wants to remind all owners of poultry feeding operations that the annul registration for PFO's began on January 1st in accordance with the Arkansas Poultry Feeding Operations Registration Act. The last day to register is Tuesday, March 31st and affects any poultry feeding operation with 2,500 or more confined fowl.


The Arkansas Natural Resources Commission administers the registration program for the purpose of collecting information on the number and type of poultry, and practices of poultry feeding operations in the state.


The program is designed to preserve Arkansas' economy and water quality through registration, training and research.


The goal of the program is to reduce the overabundance of phosphorus and nitrogen that threaten the state's water resources, while minimizing the impact on fertilizer users.


Each poultry producer will register their operation through the Cossatot Conservation District. There is an annual $10 registration fee per operation payable to the district.


For more information contact the Cossatot Conservation District at 870-584-3111 ext 3.






A National Weather Service SKYWARN class has been set for March 24th in Ashdown.


The class will be held from 6 to 7:30 p.m. at the Little River County Courthouse. An advanced class will be held from 7:45 to 9 p.m.


SKYWARN is a volunteer program with nearly 290,000 trained severe-weather spotters. These volunteers help keep their local communities safe by providing timely and accurate reports of severe weather to the National Weather Service.


The National Weather Service encourages anyone with an interest in public service and access to communication, such as HAM radio, to join the program.


The training will cover the basics of thunderstorm development; the fundamentals of storm structure; how to identifying potential severe-weather features and basic severe-weather safety.


The classes are free and are typically about two hours long.






Spring is right around the corner and we're starting to see Easter baskets, candy and stuffed animals in area stores and if you enjoy seeing children hunting eggs, the De Queen/Sevier County Chamber of Commerce would like to invite you to their annual Egg Hunt.


This year's hunt will be held on Saturday, April 4th at the De Queen Sportsplex on fields 2 and 3 beginning at 1 p.m.


The hunt is free and will be divided into three age groups: children walking age through two years; ages 3 to 5; and ages 6 through 3rd grade. Children will be required to hunt for eggs by themselves and the Easter Bunny will be on hand to pose for photos with your child for $3.


If you or your business would like to donate items like filled Easter baskets, stuffed animals, or bags of candy to give as prizes. You can drop your donation off at Bear State Bank or the KDQN studios by Wednesday, April 1st.






Last week during the March meeting of the Dierks Board of Education, board members voted to re-hire the certified staff for the 2015-2016 school term.


Superintendent Holly Corthen informed KDQN that the board voted to add five days to the school calendar to make up for the days they missed this winter.


Cothern reported the district had received the Legislative Joint Auditing Committee's report and there were a couple of issues on the report that the district has moved to resolve so they will not be on future audits.


Cothern reported the first day of PARCC testing presented some technical issues, but testing went smooth after that.


The next meeting of the Dierks Board of Education will be Monday, April 13th at 6 p.m.






The Sevier County Produce in the Park will hold a general meeting this Thursday at 6 p.m. in the Herman Dierks Park Pavilion and market coordinator Angela Smith announced this meeting is to see where the area growers are so far this season.


Smith said the Sevier County Farmer's Market is a local growers market and is for growers and crafters from any county that touches Sevier County, including Howard, Little River, Polk and McCurtain counties.


If you have a garden, raise honey bees, have poultry for eggs, are a home crafter, produce farm raised meat and/or dairy products and have an interest in selling your items at the Sevier County Farmer's Market this season.


Smith said the market will be open every Wednesday and Saturday in the Herman Dierks Park Pavilion beginning at 7:30 a.m. until 11 a.m. or they are sold out.


Smith explained that you can sign up to participate in the Sevier County Produce in the Park for the season for $50 or for $5 a day.


If you would like to participate in this year's Produce in the Park make plan to attend the spring meeting this Thursday at 6 p.m. in the Herman Dierks Park Pavilion.



ASHDOWN, Ark. – One lane of Highway 32 across Millwood Lake will be closed from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. Tuesday, March 24 to conduct an inspection of the bridge. 

Officials at the Army Corps of Engineers Millwood Project Office said they regret any inconvenience this may cause and ask for public cooperation during the closure.  If you are traveling in this area expect delays, obey flagmen, and drive cautiously around equipment and work crews.


The closure is being coordinated with emergency services and law enforcement agencies.

For more information about Millwood Lake call 870-898-3343.

Little Rock District news and recreation information can be found at



A former De Queen resident was sentenced to 40 years in prison after he pled guilty on Tuesday to the 2013 killing of a Texarkana interpreter.

Miguel "Angel" Martinez, 25, received the sentence after pleading guilty to a homicide charge during the March 10 session of the Miller County Circuit Court.

Martinez was initially arrested in November, 2013 in Tulsa, Okla. after authorities issued a nationwide warrant for his arrest. Martinez is convicted of killing 57-year-old Jamie Barrios, who worked as a Spanish language interpreter in Texarkana. According to the Texarkana Arkansas Police Department, an autopsy by the Arkansas State Crime lab determined that Barrios died from severe head trauma.

Authorities say a motive for the killing is still unclear, though the arrest affidavit claims Martinez called his mother after the killing and said he had “just lost it.”

Charges of hindering apprehension are still pending against Martinez's mother and sister.

Martinez will serve his sentence in the Arkansas Department of Corrections. He will receive credit for the 469 days he spent in custody while his case was pending.

By Patrick Massey, Editor De Queen Bee

Dollar Tree expected to open this May    03/17/15

Construction is underway on the new Dollar Tree store in De Queen.

Contractors started work on the store last month, which is being housed next to Tractor Supply in the former Walmart building on the Highway 70/71 junction. Dollar Tree, whose stores are well known for selling items for no more than a dollar, is also currently building stores in Nashville and Mena.

A contractor working on the De Queen store said the local Dollar Tree will have between eight and nine thousand square feet of floor space.

A tentative opening date has been set for late May at all three stores.

Earlier this week, the company posted a store manager and assistant store manager position on several online employment sites, including and

One source said a Dollar Tree the size of De Queen's will initially hire as many as 35 people to assist once the store opens. This would eventually be trimmed back to 10 to 12 positions once the store's operations settle.

The store is expected to host a grand opening once it opens later this spring.

By Patrick Massey, Editor De Queen Bee



Applications are now available for high school students who are interested in attending M*A*S*H camps this summer.


Camps will be held at 34 rural medical centers throughout Arkansas, including the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences Southwest in Texarkana and Howard Memorial Hospital in Nashville.


The two-week camps focus on exposing high school juniors and seniors to health care-related professions.


Jennifer Victory is a rural health specialist for Arkansas Farm Bureau and she stated the M*A*S*H program is designed to give students a look into various medical professions and spark their interest in the medical field.


Participates in past M*A*S*H camps have visited various hospitals and health care providers, dissected pig hearts, learned CPR and first aid and more.


County Farm Bureau organizations and Arkansas Medical Mentor Partnership sponsor students so they may attend the camps at no cost.


Applications are available through the area school guidance counselors office or by contacting the M*A*S*H directors.


In Nashville, contact Sonia Bunyard at 870-779-6262 or in Texarkana call Bradi Kelly at 870-779-6040.






Monday night during the meeting of the Dierks City Council, Mayor Terry Mounts reported the state's legislative audit of the city's general fund for the 2013-2014 year had been completed.


Mounts told KDQN that city officials had identified a couple of buildings on Main Street that may need to be condemned if the property owners didn't make an effort to improve their look.


Mounts also mentioned that the city had hired Jason Brown to replace retiring sanitation worker Larry House.


Mounts reported that he was expecting the Arkansas Rural Water Associations evaluation of the city's water and sewer rates. He said after reviewing the association’s recommendation concerning the city’s water and sewer rates, he would then make a recommendation to the city council.


The next meeting of the Dierks City Council will be Monday, April 13th in the Dierks City Hall.






Horatio Superintendent Lee Smith reported the Horatio Board of Education heard several presentations during their March meeting, approved the district's 2015-2016 calendar and voted to give employees a $500 bonus.


Smith stated the board was introduced to the district's Teachers of the Year and they were informed that the district's Alternative Learning program was recently honored by the state of Arkansas.


Special Education teacher Cindy Frachiseur spoke to the board about why they pass certain items that are related to the special education department.


Smith said the board wanted to approve a one-time bonus for the teachers around Christmas, but decided to wait to ensure funds would be available.


Smith said the district would be adding days to the end of the school year to make up for the days that they missed this winter due to inclement weather and he reminded district patrons that they can review the district's Board of Education minutes online at


Board members also accepted the transfer of two students from the De Queen School District and approved the transfer of one student from Horatio to De Queen.






Legislation has been filed that would help family caregivers in Arkansas.


Nearly 500,000 Arkansans play the role of caregiver for an aging parent or family member with a disability and they're not paid for that job. So, legislation was recently filed that is aimed at making things a bit easier.


Herb Sanderson with AARP Arkansas says the Arkansas Lay Caregiver Act would ease transitions from hospital to home, where caregivers provide services that used to be traditionally administered by professionals, such as wound dressing changes and injectables.


Sanderson says hospitals support the legislation because quality after-care reduces re-admissions. He said he expects this legislation to receive a hearing soon.


AARP research pegs the value of Arkansas caregiving at 4.5 billion dollars a year. Sanderson describes the legislation as one step in recognizing the enormous commitment.


Another way caregivers are being recognized is through AARP's "I Heart Caregivers" campaign, which encourages caregivers to share their stories at






Every year, thousands of Arkansans are notified by mail, e-mail or phone that they are the winners in a sweepstakes or lottery. These million dollar prize packages or new cars can be tempting, but Arkansans should resist. These scammers usually ask for a processing fee that's related to the prize but it is a ruse to pocket the fee and steal financial information.


Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge issued a consumer report to caution Arkansans not to fall victim to these sweepstake con artists.


Callers to the Attorney General's office are reporting that they have received an unsolicited phone call from an individual claiming to be with Publisher's Clearinghouse. The callers are claiming that consumers are winners and that if they pay a one-time fee, a representative of Publishers Clearinghouse will be on the way to present them with their winnings. Most of the time the winnings are described as cash, but sometimes its a car or vacation package. Almost all of these calls request the consumer to wire money to a location outside the United States or provide the scammer with the number of a prepaid debit card.


By indicating that the winnings are ready to be delivered, con artists sound legitimate, but it is highly unlikely that the scammer knows the consumer's address.


Legitimate sweepstakes or lottery winners are hardly ever notified through an unsolicited call, and legitimate businesses, such as Publishers Clearinghouse, would never require winners to wire money to receive a prize.


Regardless of how the consumer is notified, once the consumer turns over bank account information or wires the funds, there is a good chance the consumer will lose more money when their personal financial information is compromised. When money is wired to a foreign country, it is very difficult, if not impossible to get it back.


Rutledge says consumers should never try to collect winnings from a sweepstakes that they don't remember entering. They should never give out the personal financial information and they should never pay any money upfront in an attempt to claim a prize.


Consumers should ignore bogus sweepstakes prizes and immediately call the Attorney General's Consumer Protection Division to report the call and the number from which it originated.


Consumers can contact the Attorney General's office by calling 1-800-482-8982 or visiting the website





The Mine Creek Conservation District and the Pike County Conservation District held their annual Forestry and Land Judging Contest on March 10th at the Center Point Community Building.


The contest is held each year to give FFA teams some experience before competing in their district and state competitions.


The forestry contest was held on land owned by Joe and Norma Martin near Center Point and the land judging contest was held on the Bryan Billings Farm.


Students representing 10 schools competed for county and overall awards. Teams participating in the contest included: De Queen, Foreman, Mena, Nashville, Dierks, South Pike County, Kirby, Hermitage, Harmony Grove and Caddo Hills.


The Mine Creek Conservation District and the Pike County Conservation District recognized the first place team and high point individual in both contests among county contestants. Each winning team received a plaque and each team member received a t-shirt. The high point individuals received hooded sweat shirts and windbreakers.


The Dierks FFA won the Howard County Forestry contest. The team members include Curtis Nutt, Dylan Fatherree, Garrett Robertson and Jake Eudy. Nutt was the Forestry High Point individual.


Nashville FFA won the Howard County Land Judging contest.


De Queen FFA was the overall winner in the Land Judging contest.


The De Queen Land Judging team consists of Logan Hall, Emily Rodriquez, Carrie Craver and Antonnette Worley. Worley also won the overall high point award.






Jennifer Martin and Christy McCullough of the Beta Sigma Thi organization announced the group would be hosting its first annual two person scramble April 11th at the De Queen Country Club to raise funds for their community projects.


Martin and McCullough said the organization purchases shoes for students in the area schools, helps the residents of Christopher Homes as well as providing scholarships to local high school seniors.


Martin stated they were holding the crawfish dinner and golf tournament to raise funds for those projects.


Martin said the registration fee was $100 for an individual, $200 for a team and a sponsorship fee was $300. She said you can copy an entry form from the radio station’s website, or contact her at 870-584-2973 or Ben Branson at 850-530-4266.

McCullough and Martin said there will be prizes awarded to the winners.






Cossatot River State Park will be hosting several free events this weekend and Park Interpreter Andrew Rawlings said things will get started with breakfast at the sandbar this Saturday at 10 a.m.


Park Interpreter Shelley Flanary announced the park would be hosting a Cast Iron Workshop on Saturday, March 21st.


Flanary said participates will learn the history and techniques of cooking with a Dutch oven. She said everyone will also receive a free piece of cast iron cookware.


Participates will make an entree and dessert.


Admission is $40 per person, with a piece of cookware or $15 for just the meal.


For more information about programs and events at the Cossatot River State Park, call 870-385-2201. 






District 4 Representative DeAnn Vaught reported Wednesday night that the House passed Senate bill 221 which will require the Department of Workforce Services to prepare an economic report of employment and earning outcomes for degrees at state supported institutions of higher education.


Vaught explained the bill will provide middle and high school students with more information about how furthering their education can impact their financial futures.


The report will be issued to 7th through 12th graders. Vaught said incoming college freshmen will also receive a similar report to help guide them in selecting a field of study.


Vaught said the House passed a bill that would require the legislature to vote on whether to create a state run healthcare exchange, but the bill is contingent on the outcome of a case before the United States Supreme Court concerning the Affordable Care Act.


 Vaught also reported the House passed legislation which will allow Arkansans to donate a portion of their state income tax refunds to the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission.


Vaught explained tax returns would include a check-off box for those wishing to have the donation deducted from their tax refund check.






De Queen Lady Leopards softball coach Tracy Nealy and several Lady Leopards stopped by the KDQN studios Thursday morning to mention the team would be holding a couple of fundraisers to help purchase equipment for the team.


Freshman Reisa Bakenhus stated the team would be hosting a chicken dinner fundraiser on April 3rd.


Coach Nealy said they were also selling banners for the outfield fence. Cost is $300 the first year and $150 renewal fee every year after that.


Coach Nealy said he had been coaching for 21 years and he has always stressed good grades. He said this year’s team has four players with 4.0 GPAs.


Coach Nealy said if you are interested in purchasing a banner for the softball field. You may contact James Williams at 584-1909, Lisa Miller at 784-0178 or Gaytha Bakenhus at 784-1575.



You know spring is near when you start seeing the Easter baskets, candy and stuffed animals in the area stores.  If you enjoy seeing children hunting eggs, the De Queen/Sevier County Chamber of Commerce invites to you their annual Egg Hunt.   

This year’s hunt will be held Saturday, April 4th at the De Queen Sportsplex (Fields 2 & 3) beginning at 1 pm. The hunt is free and will be divided into three age groups:  Children walking age through two years; age 3 through 5; and age 6 through 3rd grade.  Children must be able to hunt by themselves.  The Easter Bunny will be on hand to pose for photos with your child for $3.

If you or your business would like to donate items such as the filled Easter baskets, stuffed animals, or bags of candy to give as prizes, please drop them off at Bear State Bank or KDQN studios by Wednesday, April 1st.




The 2015 Arkansas Governor's Conference on Tourism concluded Tuesday night in Texarkana with the annual Governor's Banquet and Arkansas Travel Blogger Kim Williams expressed the department's appreciation to the City of Texarkana for hosting this year's conference.


Williams said the annual conference provides the governor's office with the opportunity to spotlight the work of everyone that supports tourism in the state.


KDQN's Jay Lindly was a finalist in the Media Support category. The Media Support Award is presented to a distinguished individual or organization for extraordinary attention to and/or support of Arkansas' tourism industry through the use of media.


Williams also stated the Arkansas Department of Parks and Tourism launched its new website last Friday. She said the reason they updated the website was to drive more traffic to Arkansas' hundreds of industry partners.


Williams said it's a responsive web design that delivers all of the websites content to mobile devises. So, check it out at






Sevier County Senior Adult Director Mary Litchford announced the distribution of commodities this week at the Sevier County Senior Adult Centers.


Litchford said commodities will be distributed on Thursday from 9 a.m. until noon at the Horatio Senior Adult Center and at the De Queen Senior Adult Center from 1 to 4 p.m.


Commodities will be distributed Friday in Ben Lomond from 9:30 until 10:30 a.m. and at the Lockesburg Senior Adult Center from 11 a.m. until 1 p.m.


Litchford said if you are picking up commodities for someone else, you must have a signed statement from them and everyone must bring an ID.


Litchford said everyone will need to update their household information. Everyone must provide the names, address, Social Security numbers, birth dates, household size and income.


Litchford stated this is a regular distribution and clients can only receive one distribution per household and clients can only get commodities at one center.






Two hundred and fifty bills were filed Monday by House members, according to District 4 Representative DeAnn Vaught. She reported that just over 1,000 bills have been filed in the House this session.


Vaught stated one bill was headed to the governor's desk that would allow the Legislative Council to approve a state plan for reducing carbon dioxide emissions.


Senate Bill 183 states the Arkansas Department of Environmental Quality shall not submit a plan regarding fossil-fuel-fired electric plants to the Environmental Protection Agency without first seeking the approval of the governor and the Legislative Council.


Vaught reported the House passed a bill redirecting fees from the professional firefighter special license plates to the Arkansas State Firefighters Association. She said for the last few years, the fees had been going to the Arkansas Fallen Firefighters' Memorial Board to help build the Fallen Firefighters' Memorial which was built on the Capitol grounds. The memorial has been paid for and now the funds will go to the firefighters association.


House members also passed a bill that would allow property owners associations to authorize the sale of alcoholic beverages for on-premise consumption. The bill states the association would have to have a population of at least 5,000 and be located in a county which authorizes liquor sales.






Last weeks session of the Sevier County Circuit Court was held on Friday in the Sevier County Courthouse.


Circuit Court Judge Tom Cooper set a trial date of May 20th for Sabrina Dinger who has been charged with forgery in the second degree and Andrew Mills who is being charged with theft of property and residential burglary.


Shane Kennedy changed his plea from not guilty to guilty Friday and was sentenced to 12 years in the Arkansas Department of Corrections for possession of drug paraphernalia and possession of meth or cocaine. 


Joey Rymer plead guilty to two counts of theft of property, breaking and entering and commercial burglary and was sentenced to 31 years in the Arkansas Department of Corrections with 10 suspended.


Shane Vazquez was sentenced to 10 years in the Arkansas Department of Corrections for delivery of methamphetamine after changing his plea to guilty.






Monday afternoon, the members of the Sevier County Quorum Court heard reports from Courtney White of the Southwest Arkansas Crisis and Resource Center and Dick Tallman on behalf of the Sevier County Airport Commission.


White reported the crisis center had officially changed its name to Southwest Arkansas Crisis and Resource Center. She said the center had received a $50,000 grant and they were working to obtain more grants in the future.


White said the center had served 35 victims since January 1st and they were focusing their efforts on Sevier, Howard and Polk counties.


Tallman informed the JPs that the airport commission was working on a $750,000 grant to complete the parallel taxiway and for the installation of a new lighting system.


The airport engineer, Dan Clinton, explained the county would need to commit about $154,000 to the project, but the county would be reimbursed by the state after the project was finished.


Clinton told JPs, the Sevier County Airport was a really good airport and could handle most corporate jets.


JPs gave Tallman verbal permission to proceed with the grant application.


JPs then approved a resolution to destroy District Court records that had been maintained for the required amount of time and an ordinance stating the District Court office will collect all fines and fees assessed in the District Court.


The Quorum Court then approved the appointment of Gailon Godwin to the Sevier County Library Board to replace Joy Simmons who resigned because she is moving out of the county.


The next meeting of the Sevier County Quorum Court will be Monday, April 13th at 2 p.m. in the Sevier County Courthouse conference room.





Chris Hale of the De Queen Parks and Recreation Department announced Tuesday morning he was canceling the park's spring soccer program due to weather delays. Hale said he has never had to cancel a program due to the weather.


Hale stated the park would be waiving the registration fee for fall soccer for anyone who registered their child for spring soccer, but if you have any questions, you may contact the park at 642-4140.


This spring, 160 children were registered for soccer.


Hale also announced that t-ball registration will run through Friday, March 13th.


For more information, about soccer or t-ball, call the park at 642-4140.






Tuesday night during the March meeting of the De Queen Board of Education, board members upheld the recommendation from Superintendent Bruce Hill to expel a student for continued disruption issues.


Hill stated the student had been sent to ISS for over 20-days and had been suspended five or six times and nothing worked. He said he hoped this would get the child's attention.


Board members also approved Hill's recommendation to add four snow days to the end of the district's calendar to make up for the days that the district missed recently. Hill said he felt it was better than adding an hour a day for the next 24 days.


Board members accepted the teacher’s recommendation for the 2015-2016 school calendar. Hill said the only difference between this year's calendar and next year's calendar is a flex day in April.


A representative from the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission gave the board a presentation about the commission's youth shooting sports program.


Board members were informed that students would compete in American trap and the commission would provide ammo and targets to start up the program along with a $2,000 grant so the district could purchase a trap machine.


Board members voted to table a decision until their April meeting. Board President Randy Hedge asked Coach Dennis Chaney to prepare a cost analysis and get some pre-enrollment numbers.


Hill stated he wanted to do some more research before making a recommendation to the board concerning a trap team.


Hill reported Dayco was finished with the renovation of the old elementary building, but the district will continue to work on the building to provide more classrooms.


Hill said the district also needs more space on the Middle, Junior and Senior High campuses, but fortunately, they still have options, like turning the old cafeteria into a library with computer labs.


The April meeting of the De Queen Board of Education will be Monday, April 6th in the administration building at 5:30 p.m. 






The Arkansas Single Parent Scholarship Fund helps low-income single parents who are pursuing a post-secondary degree and is administered by affiliate organizations and volunteers in each county of Arkansas.


Jamie Marshall is the field director for Southwest Arkansas and she said the program helps single parents earn a degree.


Marshall said the Single Parent Scholarship is different from other scholarships because it can be used for books or gas.


Marshall said the Single Parent Scholarship Fund is working with UA Cossatot to promote the college's Dollars for Scholars events in Nashville this Thursday and on the De Queen campus of UA Cossatot on Tuesday, March 17th from 5 to 7 p.m.


If you are interested in applying for a single parent scholarship, Marshall said you should check out their website or if you need more information, call Marshall at 479-287-8213.






A Mineral Springs man was arrested Sunday night following a traffic stop by the Howard County Sheriff's Department.


Deputy Steven Wakefield reported he stopped a pickup truck for various traffic violations around 10:45 p.m. on Bright Star Road and while speaking with the driver who was identified as 53-year-old Gary Deloney, the deputy said he could smell alcohol.


Wakefield stated he also noticed a small white object in Deloney's left hand and as he reached for the paperwork, Deloney tried to put the object behind his back, but it fell between the driver's seat and the door of the truck.


Deputy Wakefield asked Deloney to retrieve the item and that is when the object fell to the ground.


The object was determined to be a small folded piece of paper that contained a substance thought to be methamphetamine.


Deloney was arrested and transported to the Howard County jail. He is being charged with possession of controlled substance - meth.


After taking a breath test to determine Deloney's blood/alcohol level, the results indicated that he had been drinking but was under the legal limit.





De Queen Fire Chief Dennis Pruitt reported Monday morning that his department responded to two fire calls this past Saturday.


Pruitt said about 1:50 p.m., 14 firefighters responded to a grass fire with four trucks at 377 South Treating Plant Road.


Pruitt explained a resident was burning a brush pile, thinking that it was safe to burn since the area had received so much moisture lately, but the fire got out of hand.


Pruitt said the sun and wind had dried out the top layer of grass and made it easy to burn.


Later Saturday night at about 8:20, 13 firefighters responded to a structure fire at 128 South Bennett Street with three trucks.


Chief Pruitt said he was the first on the scene and he reported the fire had vented through the bedroom windows and was rolling. Pruitt said the home owner brought out a garden hose and he started battling the blaze before the fire trucks arrived on the scene. He reported they were able to contain the fire to the one bedroom.


Pruitt commended his firefighters for their quick response and gave them credit for being able to save the remainder of the home.






45-year-old Timothy Howard won’t face the death penalty in his new trial next month for the murder of Brian and Shannon Day and the attempted murder of their infant son back in 1997.


Originally, Howard was found guilty following a three day trial in the Little River County Circuit Court in December of 1999. The jury sentenced Howard to two death sentences, 30-years in prison and a $15,000 fine.


But since then, the Arkansas Supreme Court has ordered a new trial for Howard and on February 24th, Chief Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Al Smith announced that he will not be seeking the death penalty. However, Howard will now face life in prison without the possibility of parole.


In December of 1997, Brian Day was found dead in the back of a U-Haul trailer on a farm that was owned by a member of Howard's family.


Shannon Day's body was discovered in a closet in the Day's home and their 7-month-old son was found alive in a zipped duffle bag with a cord around his neck.


In 2012, the Arkansas Supreme Court said Howard deserved a new trial because the defense never received a crime lab report concerning wood particles found on the boots that were used to connect Howard to the murders and other evidence that may have lead the jury to sentence Howard to life in prison instead of sentencing him to death.


Howard has been incarcerated since his arrest in December of 1997.


Jury selection for Howard's new trial is set for April 23rd and 24th.






District 4 Representative DeAnn Vaught stated a key component to the health care reform this year involves the creation of a task force which will be studying the healthcare of Arkansans, instead of focusing on Medicaid expansion.


Vaught said the task force is made up of 16 legislators and they are required to submit their findings and recommendations to Governor Asa Hutchinson and the Legislature by the end of 2015.


The law also requires them to recommend an alternative health care coverage model to ensure the availability of services for people that are currently being covered by the private option and make recommendations to modernize Medicaid.


Vaught reported the House passed legislation to cease participation in the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers after June 30th, 2015.


Vaught said if this law is passed, the governor's Common Core task force would need to present alternatives for the assessment test for next year.


The House also passed legislation which allows trained personnel to administer insulin to students if a school nurse is not available.


Vaught said this week, legislators will begin looking at legislation aimed at reducing prison overcrowding and proposed Constitutional amendments. 






This winter the staff of the Crater of Diamonds State Park completed several projects to prepare for the upcoming spring and summer seasons.


A major project that was completed was a wet sifting trough in the North Washing Pavilion that sets on the park's 37.5 acre diamond search area.


Park Superintendent James Howell said the new wet sifting trough will allow better accessibility for guests with disabilities and children.


The new trough was designed by the park maintenance department and built by Fab Tech Plus of Nashville. It is made of 304 stainless steel for strength and durability and it features low sides and a sloped bottom for easier access and cleaning.


Supplies for the project were ordered in October of 2014, and construction began in December. Park maintenance installed the new trough and accessible tables on the east side of the washing pavilion. They also built a roof over the new area to shield visitors from rain and the sun.


The Crater of Diamonds State Park is open year-round, seven-days a week, closing only on Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Day and New Year's Day. The park provides free identification and certification of diamonds and offers interpretive programs and exhibits to explain the site's history and to offer tips on how to recognize diamonds in the rough.


For more information about the Crater of Diamonds State Park, call 870-285-3113.






UA Cossatot Media Relations Director Alisha Lewis announced the college would be holding its annual Dollars For Scholars program this year on the campuses of Ashdown and Nashville high schools and on the De Queen campus of UA Cossatot over the next two weeks.


Lewis said the first program will be on the Ashdown High School campus today from 5 to 7 p.m., Nashville High School on Thursday, March 12th and on the De Queen campus on Tuesday, March 17th. She said will need to bring their 2014 tax returns to fill out the FAFSA.


Lewis stated it's very important for students to fill out the FAFSA, so they can receive all of the financial aid that they qualify for.


Lewis also mentioned that students will need to complete the FAFSA in order to apply for scholarships and the deadline to apply for UA Cossatot scholarships is April 1st.


For more information contact, the financial aid department at 1-870-584-4471.





Foreman High School senior, Samantha Bell was one of 24 Civil Air Patrol’s outstanding cadets that was chosen to attend the Civic Leadership Academy in Washington, D.C. during the week of Feb. 21st -28th.


This was part of a real-world, hands-on experience long recognized as one of America’s premier civic education activities. Samantha had the opportunity to experience behind- the- scenes tours and briefings at the U.S. Capitol, Supreme Court, State Department, CIA, Arlington National Cemetery and other places of interest in the nation’s capital.


In addition to a blend of lectures, seminars and assigned readings from historic and current sources, she also visited the National Archives: legislative offices; and the Smithsonian Holocaust Museum, as well as the World War II, Korean War, Vietnam Veterans, Women in Military Service and Lincoln memorials. At each of these locations she heard from VIPs who provided insights designed to deepen her understanding of government in action.








De Queen and five other schools participated in a regional archery tournament at the Murfreesboro High School and the top three teams from each division advanced to the state archery tournament.


The participating teams were from De Queen, Horatio, Genoa, Kirby and Murfreesboro.


The winners in the elementary division included first place-Blevins, second place-Kirby and third place-Murfreesboro.


Blevins won the middle school division followed by Murfreesboro and De Queen. And, the De Queen High School team won the senior high division. Genoa placed second and Blevins finished third.


The tournament was sponsored by the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission.






Last Thursday morning as Sevier County was thawing out from an overnight winter weather system, members of the De Queen Fire Department were toned out for a fire on Beacon Hill Road.


Fire Chief Dennis Pruitt reported 11 fire fighters responded to the blaze with three trucks. He also mentioned that his department was assisted by the Horatio Fire Department in saving the chicken house.


Pruitt stated small chickens were penned up at the opposite end of the house away from the fire and no chickens were lost due to the blaze.


Pruitt said it took about an hour to extinguish the fire.


Then, about 2:49 Friday morning, 15 fire fighters battled a house fire at 500 Rink Road. The home belonged to Wade Sutton.


Pruitt said it was so cold that it kept the foam truck from producing foam and his department had to be assisted by the Cossatot Volunteer Fire Department with their tanker trucks.


Pruitt said the fire appeared to start in the living room and when firefighters arrived on the scene the fire was venting through the living room windows and the home was fully involved.


Pruitt said the house was a complete loss, but the family had smoke detectors installed, which alerted them, and they were able to escape without any injures.






About 3 p.m. Thursday afternoon, Sergeant Chad Bradshaw of the De Queen Police Department was dispatched to Wal-Mart in reference to a man sleeping in the store.


As Bradshaw entered the Garden Center, he noticed 31-year-old Donald Gillespie sitting on the floor leaning against the emergency exit in the North West corner of the store, asleep.


Bradshaw noted that Gillespie was holding a water hose and some sheers in his lap and was wearing a black backpack.


After Bradshaw woke up Gillespie, he asked him why he was asleep. According to the incident report, Gillespie stated that he had taken some medication and it had made him sleepy.


After Gillespie handed the backpack to Bradshaw, a Wal-Mart employee reported Gillespie had taken the price tag off of it, so Bradshaw searched the backpack but did not find any merchandise in it.


Gillespie was arrested for public intoxication, but while searching Gillespie's person for weapons and other items, Bradshaw found a Mag-Bar in his pants pocket and two flashlights that were open in his hoodie pocket.


Gillespie was then charged with one count of shoplifting less than a thousand dollars.






The Nashville Parks and Recreation Department announced that the Annual March for Parks softball tournament and fundraiser that was scheduled for Saturday, March 7th had to be re-scheduled for Saturday, March 28th due to wet field conditions.


Registration for the softball tournament will continue until Monday, March 23rd. Cost is $300 per team and the tournament will include the following age divisions, 8 and under; 10 and under; 12 and under; and 14 and under.


There is a three game guarantee.


The park staff is also selling raffle tickets for $1 each for items that have been donated to the park from area businesses including a $150 gift certificate; a Husqvarna Yard Care Package that includes a chainsaw, trimmer and blower; and Echo Backpack blower; and a Stack-on 22 gun safe.


Park Director Nikki Cherry said the park was raising funds to purchase chair back seats for the renovation of the baseball complex. The drawing will be held at 2 p.m. on Saturday, March 28th at the Softball Complex.


If you would like to purchase a raffle ticket or register a team in the tournament, call the park office at 870-845-7405.






It's National Consumer Protection Week and Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge is taking this opportunity to remind consumers that con artists are constantly trying to find new ways to target consumers and steal their money.


Each year, thousands of Arkansans contact the Consumer Protection Division of the Arkansas Attorney General's office to ask for assistance with legitimate business disputes, or to report a scam or suspected fraud.


In conjunction with National Consumer Protection Week, Attorney General Rutledge named the 10 most common types of complaints that were fielded by her office in 2014. She reported the office handled and closed 8,120 consumer complaints in 2014 and recovered more than $1.9 million dollars through informal mediation efforts.


Rutledge said the 10 most common complaint categories included: automobile sales, service, financing and repair issues; credit services, credit repair and other financial services; health care; wireless and landline telephone services; debt collection; home improvement, repair and construction; utilities; landlord/tenant issues; mortgages, foreclosures and home financing; and payday lending.


Rutledge said for the past three years, automobile related transactions have been the most common type of complaint reported to her office. The credit and financial services are the second most common complaint for the second year in a row and the third most common complaint was health care related disputes.


The Arkansas Attorney General's website contains information about every common complaint category, as well as other general tips. Consumers can also contact the attorney general's office by calling the Consumer Protection hotline at 1-800-482-8982.  






Sevier County Relay for Life event coordinator Emmy Bailey announced Friday morning that its time to get signed up for this year's Relay for Life. She said currently there are seven teams and collectively they have raised almost $9,000.


Bailey said you can purchase luminaries this year and have a little mischievous fun at the same time, but flocking your friends and family with purple flamingos.


For every $5 you spend on the flamingo fundraiser, you will get one luminary display in honor of or in memory of someone. She also mentioned the luminaries touch the lives of those walking around the track during the Relay for Life event, which is scheduled for May 22nd this year.


Luminary bags are $5 each and tiki torches are $25. To place your order for the flamingo flocking fundraiser, call 580-306-7371 or 784-3053.


She said if you or someone you know has been diagnosed with cancer, you can call 1-800-227-2345 for assistance from the American Cancer Society.


For more information about the Sevier County Relay for Life, contact Bailey at 784-3053.






Around noon on Thursday, Corporal Bobby Bagley of the De Queen Police Department was dispatched to the O'Reilly Auto Parts parking lot.


When Bagley arrived, he was informed by 48-year-old Phillip Perez that he was trying to fix his truck when 40-year-old Gala Richardson stopped and started yelling at him and asked him for some drugs.


Perez said when Richardson didn't get what she wanted, she started hitting the driver's side window of his truck. He said she then reached into the back of the truck for something and tried to hit him with it. Perez said she also picked up some rocks and started throwing them at his truck.


Bagley reported that Richardson was very argumentative and would not comply with his instructions, so he placed her into custody and charged her with disorderly conduct.


Perez said Richardson was his ex-girlfriend.






Umpire Principal Carla Golden is inviting parents and grandparents to the school's Epic PI Day celebration on Friday, March 13th beginning at noon.


Golden stated the celebration will begin with a school-wide assembly in the rock building and learn about nutrition, exercise, pi-math, literacy tutoring and encourage students not to bully one another.


Golden said they will then move outside, if the weather permits, for a 3.14 mile run/walk. Parents and grandparents are encouraged to walk with their children or join the faculty in the cheering line to cheer for students as they cross the finish line.


Students are currently submitting art work to be selected for the race medal which will be presented to each participate.


Following the run/walk, everyone will be served hot dogs, pie and a drink.


If you have any questions, contact Golden at 870-583-2141.



February's Report on One of Sevier County's Food Programs   03/09/15


The Chalice Cupboard assisted 38 families in Sevier County last month: 114 people, with 67 adults and 47 children.  Food distributions totaled 906 pounds from its pantry to provide for these households.


The bank balance on February 1, 2015, was $4,957.84.  The balance on February 29, 2015, was $5,062.32.  Funds received for the month totaled $308.00.


In February $203.42 was spent from financial gifts received, adding 172 pounds of food to the pantry.   Food donations in February totaled 88 pounds. Donors were St. Barbara Catholic Church (68 pounds); individuals (16 pounds); and an anonymous donor (4 pounds).  Purchased and donated food in February provided 260 pounds of food added to the pantry last month.


Food suggested for donations during March and April are cereal and canned fruit.


The Chalice Cupboard, located at 315 North Sixth Street in De Queen, distributes food in its ministry on Tuesdays and Wednesdays, from 2:00 p.m. to 3:15 p.m.  Note: food assistance normally ends at 3:15 p.m.  This helps volunteers with paperwork for the day, and often assists the arrangement of food items in the pantry for later distributions.  Thank you for your help.






Southwest Arkansas Daily/KDQN wants to remind our readers to spring forward this weekend.


Daylight Savings Time starts this Sunday, March 8th at 2 a.m, so Saturday night before you go to bed, you should set your clock forward one hour.





Residents across the state woke up Thursday morning to a winter wonderland, as snow covered the ground and roadways throughout the state.


Forecasters say an overnight storm dropped about 1.3 inches of snow in De Queen and up to eight inches in the northeast part of the state.


Early Thursday morning the Arkansas State Highway and Transportation Department reported that every highway in the state was covered in snow or ice with the exception of some routes in northwest Arkansas, which were only partly covered.


Road conditions in Southwest Arkansas forced the closing of all area schools and preschools and several businesses delaying opening until 10 a.m. to allow for road conditions to improve.


The Sevier County Sheriff's office reported there was one reported accident this morning and it was in the City of De Queen on Ninth Street.


Little River County Sheriff's office reported three vehicles slide off the highway on US Highway 71 South. The spokesperson said one car slide off into the ditch and the other two vehicles slide into a median, but there was no property damage.


According to a deputy with Sevier County Sheriff's office, most motorists stayed off the roads until conditions improved.





Cossatot River State Park Interpreter Andrew Rawlings stopped by the KDQN studios to announce that its time to start planning your kayak tour down the Cossatot River.


Rawlings stated the Cossatot River is known for the Cossatot Falls which produce some Class 4 and 5 rapids, but these kayak tours are for beginnings and begin about 400 yards below the Cossatot Falls at the River Ridge Campsite.


Rawlings said groups can kayak on the Cossatot River when the water level is between 2.3 and 3.5 feet.


Rawlings said the yearly kayak tours are planned in advance and there will be some tours this May, but space is limited.


For more information about programs and events at the Cossatot River State Park, call 870-385-2201. 






Over the past several months, three stores have reported that they had received counterfeit money, so the De Queen Police Department is recommending that all business owners and employees properly check for counterfeit money.


De Queen Chief of Police Richard McKinley stated he didn't think there was a serious issue, but wanted to inform the local businesses to be diligent about checking for fake bills.


McKinley stated there have been two 20s and one hundred dollar bill passed within the last four to five months, but he didn't want any business to suffer a lose because they weren't paying attention or following company policy.


The general manager of a local department store informed KDQN that cashiers are trained to hold a bill up to the light to see the shadow to make sure the shadows match, because some bills will pass the pen test.






Tuesday night, aldermen of the De Queen City Council heard a report concerning the Turtle Creek Sub-division, reviewed the 2014 budget and heard Mayor Billy Ray McKelvy's recommendation about hiring a consultant to negotiate a new franchise agreement with Vyve Broadband.


Mayor McKelvy recommended the council pass a resolution authorizing him to sign a contract with Greg Fender of LGS to audit the city's past franchise fee payments and negotiate a new franchise agreement, however, the council elected to table a vote on the resolution until their next council meeting.


McKelvy said the city received a letter in February of 2013 from the cable TV company stating Vyve's intent to renew their franchise contract.


Aldermen reviewed the 2014 budget with City Clerk/Treasurer Donna Jones and voted to table a vote on the budget until the March 17th meeting.


McKelvy reported that he had sent a letter to Janet Carson concerning the Bradford pear trees in the downtown area. She responded to the mayor's letter in her column in the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. McKelvy stated she suggested several smaller trees, like tulip trees.


Mayor McKelvy informed aldermen that the Planning Commission would be meeting March 26th to consider a zoning change concerning the Turtle Creek Sub-division. He said they should have a recommendation from the commission by the council's April 7th meeting.






The Gentry School Board voted to hire former Horatio High School football coach Paul Ernest as their new head football coach.


Ernest has been coaching for 14 years. He was the head coach at Horatio for nine seasons, but as coached the last five seasons at Nashville where he has been an assistant football coach and the head softball coach.


Ernest informed the Nashville School Board that he plans to finish out his contract this semester at Nashville and coach the softball team this season.


Gentry is a 4A school and currently has about 30 athletes.






The Mineral Springs City Council gave their approval for the start of a $34,000 water project.


Crews will be installing several valves that will allow the city to be sectioned off into four sections. This will allow the water department to shut down one section of the city to repair leaks in the system.


Currently, if there is a major leak, the city's entire water system must be turned off to make the proper repairs.


Funds for the project will come from the city's depreciation account.


Aldermen voted to allow the city to hire a CPA firm from Arkadelphia to complete the past due water and sewer audits which have not been completed in four years.


The council also voted to install a metal roof on the town hall building at a cost of $18,000 and to sell the old fire station to Charlie Smith, who plans to build some apartments on the property.






District 4 Representative DeAnn Vaught reported the House approved a bill that would allow a school district with a student population that is below 350 for two consecutive years to request a waiver from  mandatory consolidation if the district is not in academic, fiscal or facilities distress or on probation for accreditation violations.


Representative Justin Gonzales said schools that have already been closed by Act 60 will not be given an option to reopen, but said it may prevent other schools from closing.


Vaught reported the House Education Committee heard testimony Tuesday on three bills including a bill that would require the State Board of Education to cease participation in the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers.


If passed the bill would require the state to cease the PARCC assessment tests after June 30, 2015. It would also require the Governor's task force on Common Core present alternatives to the PARCC assessment test for the next school year.


Vaught said the deadline to file a bill is Monday, March 9th.


In a related ruling, the Arkansas Senate passed a bill that eases the restrictions on the creation of new school districts.


The Senate approved and sent the bill to the governor's desk, which will lower the number of students needed for a new district to splinter from an existing district. The legislation lowers the requirement from 4,000 students to 2,500.


Supporters say it would allow Maumelle or Sherwood to split from the Pulaski County Special School District after clearing other state and federal hurdles.


Opponents say the change will harm lower-income students and widen racial divides in the state.  






SWEPCO customers can now sign up for outage alerts and be notified by text message or email when there is a power outage in your area. SWEPCO will also send updates notifying you when your service is expected to be restored.


The service is free and you can enroll at


Once you have enrolled, you will receive an email, text message or both when an outage has been reported in your area. You can confirm you outage by reporting it at or by calling 1-888-218-3919.


If you have multiple people in a home or business who would like to enroll in the SWEPCO alerts, each person should register with a separate user identification and password on



FUTURE ENGINEERS????      03/05/15

Horatio 2nd grade students recently worked to build a suspension bridge after their study of bridges. 

They also had a guest speaker come and talk to them about the job of a bridge engineer.  Bill Hockaday, Assistant Resident Engineer of the Arkansas Highway Transportation Department came and spoke to the students about his job and showed the students pictures of bridges he has been the lead engineer on. 

They were able to see the process of building a bridge and were also given an insight of what the new Little River Bridge will look like.









Monday night during the UA Cossatot Board of Visitors meeting, Chancellor Dr. Steve Cole informed the board that the school had decided to cancel its contract with the company that operates its bookstore and operate it themselves.


Cole reported that the reason for the change was the cost of textbooks and he stated the college would be offering an incentive to faculty members who created their own material to use or found acceptable open sources. For classes that need textbooks, such as nursing, he said the college would rent textbooks to students for $20 a semester.


Vice-Chancellor Mike Kinkade reported the college had finished all of its big projects and was now checking into paving a large parking lot on the De Queen campus as soon as it warms up.


Kinkade stated they were having a survey completed on the Lockesburg campus to ensure they installed lighting on the college's property.


Cole also reported that 75-80 students from Ashdown and Foreman would soon be able to participate in secondary career training on the Ashdown campus once an agreement is finalized with Arkansas High in Texarkana.


The next meeting of the UA Cossatot Board of Visitors will be April 6th at 6 p.m. on the Nashville campus.





Saturday night, Patrolman First Class Wayne Baker of the De Queen Police Department and Patrolman J.J. Lopez was dispatched to the EZ-Mart at the 70/71 intersection in reference to a verbal argument between two women.


Upon arriving at the scene, Baker and Lopez interviewed 31-year-old Andrea Sheets and 28-year-old Alisha Burr, both of Mena.


Sheets reportedly told the officers that she and their designated driver who drove them to the Charley Farley concert at the De Queen Country Club left the concert and shortly after they left, Burr called them and asked them to come get her because she had gotten kicked out of the concert.


Sheets stated she and Burr got into an argument and she asked the driver, Tiffany Lopez to pull over at the EZ Mart and that is when Burr reached over the front seat and grabbed her by the hair.


Sheets said she got out of the car and went inside the store to call 911, but hung up because she couldn't hear the dispatcher.


Burr admitted to the officers that she and Sheets had an argument and she allegedly stated it was over some guys that they met at the concert.


The driver reportedly stated both women were very intoxicated and Burr had attacked Sheets who was sitting in the front seat.


The store clerk reported that she saw the vehicle pull into the parking lot. She said Sheets got out of the vehicle and came into the store and asked to borrow the phone so she could call 911 but she hung up and walked outside. The clerk said dispatch called back shortly later and she reported the two women were arguing in the parking lot.


Burr and Sheets were arrested and cited for disorderly conduct.






On Friday, February 27th Sergeant Chad Bradshaw was dispatched to a hit and run accident.


Jessy Churchwell reported that a vehicle rear ended him at a 4-way and then left the scene, so, he followed the vehicle until he got to the intersection of 6th and Collin Raye Drive.


When Bradshaw arrived at 6th and Collin Raye, Churchwell informed him that he saw a black male jump out of the passenger side of the vehicle that hit him, run away.


The suspected driver of the vehicle that rear ended Churchwell's vehicle then allegedly pulled into the Fat Chance's parking lot.


When Bradshaw approached the vehicle he noticed an unopened beer can lying under the truck. Bradshaw then arrested 18-year-old Brandon Cornett for being a minor in possession.


While conducting an inventory of the vehicle, Bradshaw discovered a small wooden box with a smoking device inside it along with what appeared to be marijuana residue on it.


Cornett also did not have any proof of insurance.


Cornett was charged with leaving the scene of a property damage accident, no liability insurance, minor in possession of alcohol and possession of drug paraphernalia.





According to District 4 Representative DeAnn Vaught, 22 percent of Arkansans over the age of 25 have taken some college level courses but never finished their degrees, while the national average is 21 percent.


Vaught said a college degree can have a significant impact on the economic status level of a person. She explained according to a recent census, the poverty rate of someone with some college is 12.5 percent, while that percentage drops to 4.3 percent if they earn a bachelor's degree.


Vaught said research shows that working more than 20-hours a week will increase the amount of time a student reaches graduation, but it will also decrease the likelihood of someone getting a degree.


Therefore, last week, the House passed legislation that could open the door for thousands of adults who want to go back to school and finish their degree, who are limited by time and money.


Senate Bill 265 will allow the University of Arkansas to establish an eVersity.


The University of Arkansas System eVersity is a 100 percent online institution that was created by the UA Board of Trustees in March of 2014 to serve students who are unable to access traditional higher education campuses.


The core principles of the institution includes providing high quality courses, affordable tuition and workforce relevant degree programs, along with promoting student success in programs.


Currently the program is in its planning stages, but the University of Arkansas System eVersity hopes to start offering classes in partnership with existing University of Arkansas institutions in late 2015.






The Foreman Chapter of the National Honor Society inducted six new members on Friday, February 27th during a candle lighting ceremony.


District 4 Representative DeAnn Vaught was scheduled to speak, but the weather caused her to have to stay in Little Rock. So, she sent her speech and Principal Kim Cody read it.


The Foreman National Honor Society inducted Keely Butler, Ethan Anderson, Erin Chewning, Julia Frye, Myranda Gross and Cass Lindsey.


The current National Honor Society members are Jessie Smith, Chelsea Stephens, Trevor Stevens and Samantha Bell.


Following the induction ceremony, a reception was held in the FACS Department for the National Honor Society members, their family and friends and faculty.






Little River County Judge Mike Cranford announced that the county has started charging for county trash disposal service this month.


Residential and commercial customers will be charged for the removal of solid-waste. The new fee system was approved February 9th during a meeting of the Little River County Quorum Court.


Cranford explained that there will be no change to the service, but residential customers will now pay $17 dollars a month, while commercial customers with green boxes will pay $75 a month per container for biweekly pickup or $100 a month per container for weekly pickup.


Since 1996, the trash-collection service has been funded by a half-cent sales tax, but sales-tax revenue has been declining while the cost to collect and haul the trash to the regional landfill in Nashville has increased.






In many cases, tax-relief companies know when they contact consumers who owe taxes, that these consumers are desperate to find ways to settle their tax debt with the IRS or the State of Arkansas.


Tax-relief companies often claim they can reduce or even eliminate an individual's tax debts and stop the collection of back taxes by applying for legitimate IRS hardship programs. However, the tax-relief companies don't usually settle the tax debt and, in many cases, don't even send the necessary paperwork to the IRS.


Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge issued a consumer alert cautioning Arkansans to avoid falling victim to promises that they are eligible for tax relief.


Consumers should view paying taxes just like paying other bills. It is often better to negotiate a payment plan with the creditor than to pay someone else to finalize those details and the same is true when you owe the IRS or the state.


Consumers who are having trouble meeting their tax obligation should avoid the companies that make promises that consumers are eligible or qualified for a tax-relief program because only the IRS can make that determination.


Consumers should be wary of any program that asks for upfront fees or advance fees and any program that promises results that seem too good to be true.


The IRS offers tax-relief programs to help consumers who owe taxes: including an installment agreement which is generally available to people who can't pay their tax debt in full at one time and an offer of compromise, which allows taxpayers to permanently settle their tax debt for less than the amount that they owe.


The Taxpayer Advocate Service is an independent organization within the IRS that provides free help to people who are experiencing financial difficulties or who need help resolving a problem with the IRS. To contact the IRS, call 1-877-777-4778 or you may contact the Attorney General's office at 1-800-482-8982 or go to the website




 UA Cossatot held its annual rodeo last Thursday, Friday, and Saturday at the Four States Fair and Rodeo Arena in Texarkana. 

Despite sketchy weather conditions, crowds turned out all three nights to cheer for students competing in the events.   

“The production brought in a record attendance for the 5th annual rodeo,” according to UA Cossatot Rodeo Coach Valerie Stone.  “GizMo McCracken had crowds rolling every night, and J&J Rodeo's livestock had college competitors bringing their best to the arena.  The talent of Garrett Yerigan's announcing and musical engineering of Jarred Campbell kept the crowd entertained and the show moving smoothly.”


While the UA Cossatot Colts didn’t rank in the finals, they all helped with the production of the rodeo and a production of this magnitude takes a team effort.


Thursday was FFA and student night but students were in attendance every night. Friday night was designated to honor military and on Saturday night, fans were treated to tee shirts thrown into the crowd as well as some of the best rodeo action in the area.  Spectators were encouraged to take photographs and videos and post on social media with the hashtag: uacossatotrodeo (#uacossatotrodeo). You can check out photographs and videos on UA Cossatot’s Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.   


As part of the renovation and updating of the newly acquired Lockesburg High School, UA Cossatot made a recent donation to the Lockesburg Public Library of many books once belonging to the school. 


“We are excited to preserve as much history in the Lockesburg area as we can through this renovation,” said UA Cossatot Chancellor Steve Cole.  “Donating these books from the old Lockesburg High School just made sense. Past generations of Lockesburg students read these books, and now they can be read by their children and grandchildren. ”


Many of the books donated were more than textbooks.  Books including novels, fiction, and non-fiction previously placed in the high school library were donated for area citizens to check out.   


Wendy Clay, Lockesburg Branch Librarian said “We thank UA Cossatot for thinking of the Sevier County Library System with their donation of Lockesburg High School books.” 


The Lockesburg Library is a branch of the Sevier County Library System. 


DE QUEEN FFA       3/2/15


National FFA Week has been shortened this week due to inclement weather that kept students out of school for four days this week, but members of the De Queen FFA are still promoting the benefits of FFA.


De Queen's chapter has 41 members and is led by advisors Ryan Hanney and Morgan Frachsieur.


This year's officers include: President Rex Standridge, Vice-President Aaron Morris, Treasurer Tyler Johnson, Parliamentarian Tiffany Becerra, Sentinel Brandi Frachiseur, Reporter Kayla Martin, Historian Catlin Carver and Secretary Carrie Craver.


This year, chapter members hosted the Sub-Area Leadership Contest and earned first place in several categories like Opening and Closing; Discussion Meet; Creed Speaking and Prepared Public Speaking.






During the February meeting of the Cossatot River Board of Education, board members extended Superintendent Donnie Davis' contract through the 2017-2018 school year and voted to purchase a truck and two buses.


Davis stated the district purchased a 2015 Dodge Ram 2500 crew cab for the Umpire campus for just over $25,000 along with two buses that not only have heaters, but also have air conditioners.


Davis stated the extension of his contract will provide stability to the district and the board renewed the contracts of the campus principals and other administrators.


Davis reported the board also approved the purchase of technology equipment for all of the Cossatot River campuses for $165,527.33 and Cossatot River will be hosting the 3A state basketball tournament this week.


The March meeting of the Cossatot River Board of Education is scheduled for March 12th at 6 p.m. in the administration building.






A former Sevier County resident who was the youth minister of the Mineral Springs Church of Christ has been arrested and charged with first degree sexual assault.


In August of 2014, three girls filed a report with the Nashville Police Department accusing 31-year-old Jonathan Neeley of sexually abusing them in 2009 and 2010.


Victim A was 17-years-old, while victims B and C were 18-years-old at the time of the abuse.


All three victims reported that the incidents occurred primarily at Neeley's residence.


Neeley was interviewed by Nashville Police Officers in Illinois and was arrested and charged with first degree sexual assault in regards to victim A.


Neeley was extradited back to Arkansas and is being held in the Howard County jail on a $100,000 bond.






District 4 Representative DeAnn Vaught reported Thursday night that the House Education Committee advanced a bill that would provide a waiver for rural school districts that are in danger of being consolidated if they meet state adequacy standards.


Currently, a district must consolidate with another district if its enrollment falls below 350 students.


Vaught said the House Education Committee also advanced a bill that would allow public college faculty and staff members who have a concealed-carry permit to carry a weapon on campus.


An amendment to the bill, however, would allow colleges and universities to require some additional training for those who have permits before they could take a firearm on campus.


The current law allows colleges and universities to opt out of allowing faculty and staff who have permits to bring a weapon on campus and every school of higher education in Arkansas opted out after the law was passed two years ago.


Vaught reported the full Housed approved a bill to make it a misdemeanor for a person 18 or older to distribute sexual images of a family member or a person from a past or present relationship in order to harass, frighten, intimidate, threaten or abuse that person.


And, the House voted in favor of a bill that would require the Department of Human Services to notify everyone on the Private Option program that it will end on December 31st, 2016.






The Army Corps of Engineers, Millwood Project Office announced that campsites at Beard's Lake and Cottonshed parks on Millwood Lake will be reservable beginning March 1st.


Campers can reserve a site online at or by calling 1-877-444-6777. Visitors can make reservations at the park beginning March 1st.


When making a reservation, campers will be asked for the campground name or state, arrival and departure dates, type of site required, method of payment, and your Golden Age/Golden Access or America the Beautiful passport number (if applicable).


For more information about Millwood Lake call the Millwood Project Office at 870-898-3343.




The Horatio High School Alternative Education was honored on Thursday, February 19th, at the Capitol, in Little Rock at the Arkansas Alternative Education 2015 Leadership Day. Those honored were Sharon Lindsey, ALE Director and Assistant Principal, and Vicki Devore, ALE Teacher.  The ALE was honored as one of the model programs in the state of Arkansas.  There are 450 plus ALE programs in the state, and 20 programs were honored with plaques given by representative Dee Vaught.  The Horatio Alternative program continues to gain the attention of school districts in Arkansas with emphasis on school accountability required by virtually every school district in the state.  The partnership of determined, student-orientated principals, innovative instructors, committed students and an engaged community will ensure more students graduate and fewer students drop out of school.





Arkansas State Police say a 64-year-old Nashville resident died Wednesday morning in a two vehicle accident on a snow covered Highway 371.


Authorities reported, Ann Lawrence was traveling east, when she lost control of her 2002 Ford SUV and crossed the center line. Her vehicle was then struck by a west bound Chevy pickup that was being driven by 32-year-old Joseph Trembley of Lockesburg.


Police say Lawrence was thrown from her vehicle and was pronounced dead at the scene by Howard County Coroner, John Gray.


Trembley was injured and was transported to the Howard Memorial Hospital.


Trooper Mason Glasgow reported the accident happened west of Nashville, near the Highway 371/Blue Bayou Road intersection at around 10:50 a.m.






Park Interpreter Shelley Flanary of the Cossatot River State Park informed KDQN that the park will be holding a Nature Hike along the Cossatot River to discover what wildlife is stirring around this Saturday from 10 to 11 a.m..


Flanary will also be teaching a class on wildlife symbols Saturday from 3 to 4 p.m. She said symbols are all around us, at home or at the store on packages or cans, television or magazine ads, team logos on shirts and hats, signs and more.


According to Flanary, the class will include hunts, walks, music and food. If you are interested in learning about wildlife symbols join Flanary at the Visitor Center at 3 o'clock.


On Sunday, the park will be hosting a feed the critters event from 2 to 3 p.m. and a campfire story from 7 to 8. Sunday night, guest will enjoy some hot chocolate and some interesting campfire stories.


For more information about programs and events at the Cossatot River State Park, call 870-385-2201. 






A De Queen woman was arrested Tuesday in Gillham for allegedly shooting at three people in a couple of incidents in McCurtain County, Oklahoma.


33-year-old Alice Dunn is suspected of shooting two people February 15th after spending the night drinking at the Blue Bar on the Arkansas/Oklahoma line. She is then allegedly shot a third person February 22nd.


All three victims survived, but one is still in the hospital.


Dunn was arrested in Gillham by members of the Sevier County Sheriff's office and will be extradited to McCurtain County where she will be charged with two counts of assault with a deadly weapon.






Judge Steven Tedder announced Thursday morning that this year's District Court amnesty program will begin Monday morning for people who have warrants for old fines.


Tedder stated the program will continue through the entire month of March and if you have any questions, you may contact the District Court office at 584-7311.


Tedder stated the Sevier County District Court offers the program once a year to help people pay off their old fines, but if a person is arrested on an outstanding warrant, they are not eligible for the amnesty program and he said there is no expiration date on fines.


Tedder said fines may be paid in cash, but they are working on a program to allow fines to be paid with a debit or credit card. For more information, contact the District Court office at 584-7311.





On February 10th, Terry Spears reported to the Howard County Sheriff's office that his home had been burglarized and a safe had been stolen.


Investigators David Shelton and Jade Hughes made two arrests very quickly after receiving information from eye witnesses and a roommate of Spears.


While working on the Spears case, the sheriff's office was notified by Tony Britt that his home on Cornbridge Road had been burglarized and numerous guns and electronics were stolen.


On February 13th, a Nashville Police Officer stopped a vehicle that was being driven by 26-year-old Steven Gillham of Nashville along with a passenger that was identified as 18-year-old Anthony Wilson of Mineral Springs.


Authorities discovered two pistols that were stolen from Britt's home and the two men were arrested for theft of property and investigators obtained information that led them to a suspected drug house in Texarkana where they believed the stolen property had been taken, however, officers were not able to obtain a search warrant for the residence.


Then on Feburary 17th, 18-year-old Vicenta Rocha of Mineral Springs was arrested for his involvement in the Britt case.


Deputies then arrested Spear's roommate, 20-year-old Jason Smith of Nashville for the theft of the safe from Spear's home.


An arrest warrant has been issued for 18-year-old Paige Worley of Mineral Springs along with two juveniles in the Britt case.


The information that was obtained during these two investigations has also helped the Sevier County Sheriff's Office tie some of these suspects to recent burglaries and thefts in the southeastern portion of Sevier County.






Tuesday night, the Dierks Board of Education heard a presentation from Bill King from KLC which is a video surveillance system company with suggestions about upgrading the district's security system.


King reported his company has installed security systems on 80 campuses in Arkansas and 120 in Texas.


KLC's bid was for the installation of 44 cameras on both campuses.


Superintendent Holly Cothern stated the district stated looking at upgrading their system about four years ago when the Faulkner family asked them to upgrade their system after their daughter had some items stolen off a bus.


Board members approved the bid from KLC in the amount of $51,935.00. Board President Todd Moore said the project would be paid for in full from the district's building fund.


Cothern reported the district was doing well financially and they had only spent about 52 percent of their budget so far this year.


Cothern said the district tax revenue was up this year and they were receiving student growth funds from the state, but another impact was the district's new absentee policy.


High School Principal Jody Cowart informed the board about the high schools recent tornado drill. He stated they were able to get all of the students from the high school to the safe room in seven minutes and 50 seconds.


Elementary Principal Karla Byrne informed the board that the elementary had taken a trial PARCC test and students will be taking the PARCC test March 9th through the 13th.






Inclement weather moved into the area earlier Wednesday morning and Sevier County Judge Greg Ray stopped by the KDQN studios to discuss area closings.


Judge Ray stated that he and county superintendents were in constant contact when inclement weather was possible, discussing road conditions. Ray said the only way to determine road conditions was by putting boots to pavement.


Judge Ray said the county has hundreds of miles of paved roads and even more secondary roads.


Judge Ray said its easier to clear gravel roads but paved roads may be slick even after blading them because you can't put the blade flat against the road.


Sevier County Sheriff Bennie Simmons' office reported numerous accidents Wednesday morning and reported that roads were getting increasingly dangerous.






The second murder trial for Tim Howard, which was scheduled for March 2nd, has been delayed following a pre-trial hearing Tuesday in the Little River County Circuit Court.


Howard was convicted of murdering two Ashdown residents and has been on death row since 1999.


Howard was found guilty on December 9th, 1999 of the murder of Brian and Shannon Day and the attempted murder of their 7-month old child. The baby survived without any injuries and is now 17 years old.


During the appeals process, the Arkansas Supreme Court ruled in 2012 that Howard should receive a hearing to determine if the DNA evidence from hairs and blood gathered at the crime scene was contaminated.


A crime lab scientist testified the DNA tests were valid and if retested, the results would be the same. The scientist stated Howard's DNA would still be on the boots that were found near a pond on East Ogden Road.


A new trial was ordered in November of 2013.






Tuesday evening, District 4 Representative DeAnn Vaught reported the House had passed a bill that would abolish the Arkansas Lottery Commission. The lottery commission currently oversees the operation of the lottery whose net proceeds provide scholarships to Arkansas students that attend college in Arkansas.


Senate Bill 7 will transfer the powers and duties of the lottery commission to the Department of Finance and Administration. It also allows the governor to appoint a Lottery Director.


Another bill that will now head to Governor Asa Hutchinson's desk is a bill that gives terminally ill patients the right to access experimental treatments which have successfully completed phase one testing of the Federal Drug Administration.


Vaught also reported the House Education Committee advanced a bill that would allow the University of Arkansas to establish an eVersity, which would offer online courses at an affordable rate. She said the program is aimed at helping Arkansans who have some college credit but did not finish their degree.





District 4 Representative DeAnn Vaught reported that there are over 2,500 state inmates being held in county jails that are waiting on beds at a state facility and the state prisons are currently holding more than a thousand more inmates than they were designed to accommodate.


Vaught said when this year's session opened, many expected the Legislator would consider building a new $100 million dollar prison to provide the additional space, however, last week, Governor Asa Hutchinson presented a three part approach to the crisis.


Hutchinson's plan includes funding for more prison beds, the creation of a more effective parole and re-entry system and the investment in alternative sentencing programs, which according to the governor's office will cost about $64 million dollars over the next two years.


Vaught reported that the House passed a bill which will allow inmates to work in the private sector for companies that have a program in place.


The House also passed a bill which would allow inmates to participate in a re-entry program within 18-months of his or her projected release date. According to Vaught, the program is designed to help lower the number of inmates who re-offend following their release.


Vaught reported that after six weeks of the regular session, Governor Hutchinson has signed over 130 bills into law.


For more information about the House sessions go to the website,




UA COSSATOT FFA       2/25/15


It's FFA Week and area high school chapters have several activities planned to help share the benefits of agricultural education with their fellow students, well, at UA Cossatot, FFA provides students with the opportunity to develop relationships with people in the agricultural field, while they purse a career in agriculture.


UA Cossatot FFA Chapter Advisor Kelli Harris said UA Cossatot provides a solid foundation for students who plan to purse a degree at another institution or a career in an agricultural field.


Harris said the UA Cossatot started celebrating National FFA Week, last Friday during the Colt Classic, but held a fundraiser Tuesday at the Tractor Supply Company in De Queen.


For more information about the UA Cossatot chapter of FFA, contact Harris at 584-4471.






The Central Oklahoma University team of Colten Hutson and Brock Enmeier won the FLW College Fishing Southern Conference event last Saturday with a five-bass limit weighing 13 pounds, 15 ounces. The duo earned $2,000 and advanced to the FLW College Fishing Southern Conference Championship tournament.


However, several area anglers competed in the tournament.


The Henderson State University team of Michael Gross of Gurdon and Cobey Wingfield of Malvern finished tenth, while the Texas A&M University-Texarkana team of Josh Cole and Logan Byrd, both of Texarkana finished 15th. Both teams will advance to the Southern Conference Championship tournament on Grand Lake.


Southern Arkansas University had two teams in the tournament.


The duo of Charles Swilly, Jr. of Ashdown and Troy Elliot of Waldo finished in 30th place, while the team of Hunter Bruce of Powderly, Texas and Steven Self of Kirby finished in 36th.


FLW College Fishing teams compete in qualifying tournaments in one of five conferences and the top 15 teams from each regular-season tournament qualify for one of five conference championship tournaments. The top ten teams from the conference championship tournaments advance to the 2016 FLW College Fishing National Championship.






Across the country, Farm Bureaus are making safety a top priority this spring through the Agricultural Safety Awareness Program. As part of the program, March 1st through March 7th has been designated as Agricultural Safety Awareness Week.


This year's theme is "Ride Like A Pro...Wherever You Go," and it will focus on ATV safety.


All-terrain vehicles are used on most farms and ranches in Arkansas, but despite the availability of good safety equipment and training programs, injuries and fatalities involving ATV operators happen much too often.


According to the latest figures from the Consumer Product Safety Commission:


There are about 804 ATV related deaths nationally every year. Fifty-six percent of these death occur between May and September and one-third of these death occur on paved surfaces.


Arkansas averages 12 ATV related deaths per year and three of these are children under the age of 16.


According the Arkansas Children's Hospital Trauma Department, 101 of its admissions in 2014 were ATV-related.


Jason Kaufman is the safety coordinator for Arkansas Farm Bureau and he recommends that you get dressed to ride an ATV by putting on your helmet, safety glasses, long sleeves, gloves, long pants and boots to help reduce the risk of injury.


Kaufman also recommends all riders take an approved training course. He said the Cooperative Extension Service of the University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture provides courses through the ATV Safety Institute's 4-H ATV Rider Course.


For more information, call 501-671-2053 or contact the Sevier County Extension office at 584-3013.



UA Cossatot Hosts Judging Contest     02/24/15


UA Cossatot hosted the annual Colts Classic, a high school FFA judging contest, on the De Queen campus last Friday. 


There were 995 students from 43 high schools from Arkansas, Texas, and Oklahoma.  Students competed in many different judging events including: livestock, land, forestry, vet science, poultry, diary, ag mechanics, and several other categories. Most of the staff of UA Cossatot and many community businesses and people volunteered to help with the contest.


Kelli Harris, Agriculture Instructor for UA Cossatot, coordinates the event each year. 


“Each year we get smarter about how to host this many people on our campus and in our community,” said Harris.  “As a result, each competition runs smoother but we couldn’t do it without the help of folks like Pilgrim, Weyerhaeuser, Tractor Supply, Rex Herring, Al Wright, Jo Paul Stuart, Harrell Sherwood, Terri Hart and countless others.  I am just hopeful that next year, when we host, the temperature will be above freezing!” 


UA Cossatot’s collegiate chapter of FFA hosts the contest and along with Simple Simons Pizza provided lunch to all of the volunteers and students.   




An anonymous note containing some threatening language was found on the floor of a Ashdown Junior High School classroom on February 18th by a student who then gave the note to a teacher.


Administrators were immediately notified and school officials contacted the local law enforcement agencies.


After a review with law enforcement officials, it was determined that there was no imminent threat but the investigation continued. Superintendent Jason Sanders also raised the level of security awareness and the district maintained a greater law enforcement presence on all campuses to ensure students and staff were safe.


On Friday, February 20th another threatening note was found in a classroom and administrators immediately contacted the local police and the ensuing investigation revealed the person responsible for the note. During the course of the investigation, the person responsible for the first note was also identified.


Sanders stated these two persons will be dealt with appropriately under the school's disciplinary policy and under the law.


The district is limited by the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act from releasing the names of the students or the details of their conduct or even the notes themselves.


Sanders stated student safety is the district's number one concern and they were not going to put students or staff at risk.


Sanders said social media outlets may tell a far more exciting and different story, but these are the facts of the case that can be released. He said that if he thought students were not safe at school, they would contact parents, close the schools or take whatever action was necessary to ensure their safety.




HORATIO FFA       2/24/15


It's National FFA Week and the members of the Horatio FFA chapter are celebrating with several activities this week including a teacher appreciation breakfast and Farm Olympics.


Horatio FFA President Matt Cribb and Vice-President Michalla Caudle mentioned the chapter will be conducting several fundraisers this week to support the chapter's Career Development Education teams and Leadership Development Education teams, including their annual chili supper and workday auction.


Nicki Litchford is the Horatio FFA advisor and she reported the chapter’s CDE and LDE teams have competed in livestock, electricity, vet science, food science, parliamentary and other competitions. Members also competed during the annual Colts Classic on the campus of UA Cossatot last Friday.






Friends and family gathered in the foyer of the Little River County Courthouse Friday afternoon to attend the dedication ceremony for a portrait of the late Little River County Judge Clayton Castleman.


Little River County Judge Mike Cranford described Castleman as a statesman because he was loved and supported by everyone and because he worked for the good of Little River County.


Castleman's photograph will be placed in the row of photos of Little River County judges in the foyer of the courthouse.


Castleman died November 22nd, 2014. He was set to retire December 31st at the end of his fourth term in office.






U.S. Congressman Bruce Westerman and his wife, Sharon, recently visited De Queen Public Schools and was impressed with the progress made by the district and described the Direct Instruction (D.I.) Reading program as "phenomenal" and "worthy to be replicated". The district has been recognized nationally for its accomplishments in teaching children to read. Congressman and Mrs. Westerman visited numerous classrooms, ate lunch with students, and held a roundtable discussion with school administrators.


Congressman Westerman's Statement:

De Queen Public Schools Superintendent Bruce Hill, Sharon Westerman, Congressman Bruce Westerman, and De Queen Primary School Principal Terri Hill. 

For more pictures from Congressman's visit:

Achieving the dream in De Queen:



Jessie Smith is the 18 year old daughter of Clay and Jamie Smith and a senior at Foreman High School.  Jessie recently achieved status as a National Merit Finalist.  In order to be eligible for this prestigious honor, Jessie took the PSAT her junior year along with l.5 million juniors.   Of this group of students, 50,000 were selected for commended or semifinalists.  To qualify as a finalist the process was further narrowed down and students were required to take the SAT and write an essay.  From these students and further elimination, only 15,000 students qualified for the National Merit Scholarship and Jessie was among the top achieving students.

Jessie is also a member of the National Honor Society, Science Club, Library Club, Drama Club, and the yearbook staff.  She will graduate from Foreman this year and currently plans on attending Harding University.  


Members of the Foreman High School band recently participated in Arkansas All-Region auditions and clinics.  After completing the audition process, two students were selected to represent the Foreman High School band as members of the 2014-2015 Arkansas All-Region Bands. 

Ninth grade band member, Patrick Eaves, successfully earned the first chair, of the first junior high band, on contra alto clarinet.  Tenth grade band member, Tyler Phelps, successfully earn the fourth chair, of the first senior high band, on tenor trombone.  With his score and chair placement, Tyler also qualified to audition for the Arkansas All-State bands. 




Patrick Eaves

Tyler Phelps

Foreman High School is very fortunate to have these students, honored to have shared them with the Arkansas All-Regions bands, and wish them success as they further their music education. 


Ark-La-Tex Challenge    02/24/15
3rd Annual Charitable Ark-La-Tex Challenge Cycling Tour April 11th

Edge City Cycling announces the 3rd Annual Ark-La-Tex Challenge for Saturday, April 11, 2015.  Benefiting Texarkana Resources, the Ark-La-Tex Challenge is a cycling tour through Texas, Arkansas and Louisiana with 70, 52, 46, 35 and 22 mile route lengths.  The 70 mile tour enables the rider to visit three states in one ride.  A supported return route enables the cyclist to experience all three states with a 35 mile one-way tour.  Cyclists will ride through the beautiful countryside with routes which include some challenging rolling hills and long fast flats as they wind through several rural towns.  The tour rally will begin at 9 a.m. from Liberty-Eylau High School, Texarkana, TX. 

Bikes must be in good working order.  Helmets are required any time the rider is on the bicycle.  The routes will have an abundance of rest stops and support.

Along with Participants, the Ark-La-Tex Challenge is currently seeking additional Sponsors and Volunteers.  Texarkana Resources is a private non-profit organization providing training and support to enable adults with a disability reach their highest potential in the community.

Further Details / Contact:
Online Registration:



DE QUEEN, AR -  UA Cossatot will host its 5th Annual College Rodeo at the Four States Fairgrounds in Texarkana, AR on Feb 26, 27 and 28.

The show begins at 7:30pm and will feature Bareback Riding, Calf Roping, Breakaway Roping, Saddle Bronc Riding, Steer Wrestling, Goat Tying, Team Roping, Barrel Racing and Bull Riding with competitors from over 15 colleges and universities in the Ozark Region of the National Intercollegiate Rodeo Association.

UA Cossatot Colts Rodeo Coach, Valerie Stone, is expecting this to be UAC’s largest and most entertaining rodeo yet. Stone said, “The quality of the UA Cossatot College Rodeo is comparable to any professional rodeo you will go to.”

Admission for Adults will be $10 a person, all students are $8 each and ages 5 and under are free. UA Cossatot students with student ID and high school FFA members wearing their FFA chapter jackets or t-shirts, in honor of National FFA Week, get in free on Thursday night, and all military personnel (past, present and future) can get in free Friday night with a government-issued military ID. Saturday, there will be a 4D Barrel Race, sponsored by 5-Star Equine. For those interested in competing, books will open at 9am and the show will start at noon. Saturday night’s Championship Round will be televised and aired at a later date on HRTV.

Here is a look at what you can expect to enjoy at this year’s UA Cossatot College Rodeo!

THE RODEO CLOWN:  Gizmo McCracken has been entertaining crowds across the Country for 38 years. He became a member of the PRCA (Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association) 22 years ago. Since that time, the list of accomplishments has grown beyond belief. He has worked 13 PRCA Circuit Finals Rodeos, Dodge National Circuit Finals Rodeo, Cheyenne Frontier Days twice, nominated Coors Man in the Can 3 times, nominated for Comedy Act of the year 3 times and –his biggest accomplishment—being a feature act at the 2005 Wrangler National Finals Rodeo.

Gizmo takes pride in the fact that his humor is good, clean, family style comedy.

"Sometimes it just don't seem right to have this much fun and get paid for it." said Gizmo.

Gizmo travels the country from Canada to Texas, from the East Coast to the West Coast logging some 45,000 miles a year through dozens of states. Gizmo started his career as bullfighter and moved into stand-up comedy on a show in Branson, MO. Gadgets and gizmos that went sour were often part of his routine, hence the name "Gizmo, The World's Greatest Inventor."

"A lot of clowns and specialty acts sell themselves with a bucking car or a dancing horse," said Gizmo.  "I supply a character."  That is just what Gizmo is. Many characters will find their way into your town and your arena. "I like to keep people looking for me and wondering what I am going to do next," said Gizmo. The acts share a high energy, clean, family-oriented feel which adds a fresh new atmosphere to any rodeo.  Gizmo is the best comedy entertainer that rodeo has to offer. Regardless of whether you have seen him before or this is your first experience, you will leave laughing.

THE LIVESTOCK PRODUCER:  J & J Rodeo Company, formed in 2008, is owned and operated by Jason Murray of Cooper, Texas.  It is a family operated business and they pride themselves in quality stock on both ends of the arena.  Murray got his start in the rodeo business by working for Sammy Andrews, of Andrews Rodeo Company in 1997.  That grew into Jason and his brother, Judd, leasing roping calves to Sammy and other rodeo contractors.  He has worked for many of the greats including Sammy Andrews, Neal Gay and Harry Vold. 

J & J Rodeo got its start contracting for high school rodeos. In 2010, J & J Rodeo Company became the stock contractor for the Texas Junior High Finals in Gonzales, Texas.  For the last 5 years, he has provided stock for that particular rodeo.  J & J Rodeo Company bought a UPRA stock contracting card in 2010 and has been a finals stock contractor since 2011.  For the 2012 UPRA finals, Jason provided 8 horses, 5 bulls and all the timed event cattle.  J & J partnered with Wilson & King Bucking Bullz in 2012 and in 2013, they had the bucking bull of the year.

Every year has gotten better for J & J Rodeo Company.  They now hold a NIRA stock contracting card and produced its first college rodeo last year for UA Cossatot. They look forward to provide a great show for this year’s college rodeo!

THE ANNOUNCER:  Garrett Yerigan is one of professional rodeo’s youngest and most talented announcers. At 20 years young, Yerigan has been around rodeo all his life.  His dad, Dale, is a former rodeo competitor and mom, Kathy, still competes in Barrel Racing. Kathy is a former International Finals Rodeo qualifier in the Barrel Racing and Dale is an 11-time World Champion in the Steer Wrestling and is currently the General Manager of the International Professional Rodeo Association. Garrett is a 2013 graduate of Pryor High School in Pryor, Oklahoma.

Yerigan has been a very active member in the FFA serving as the Chapter Sentinel and later Vice-President. He was blessed enough to be the 2012 Oklahoma FFA Proficiency Winner in Agricultural Communications and went on to be the National Winner that same year. In 2013, he finished in the Top 3 for Northeast District Star in Agribusiness, received his State FFA Degree, and was the State and National Outdoor Recreation Proficiency Winner.

Yerigan is currently a member of the International Pro Rodeo Assoc. (IPRA) and the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Assoc. (PRCA) and works approximately 10 professional rodeos per year. In 2014, Yerigan set a record as the youngest announcer in the International Finals Rodeo's (IFR) 44-year history! He also has been selected to work events such as the National Junior High Finals Rodeo, Oklahoma and Texas State High School Finals Rodeos, Youth Bull Riders World Finals, Better Barrel Races World Finals. Garrett can be heard in states such as Oklahoma, Arkansas, Illinois, Iowa, Missouri, Mississippi, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Texas, and Ontario.


THE MUSIC DIRECTOR:  For the third in a row Jarred Campbell of JC Productions will be behind the music for the UA Cossatot College Rodeo.  Campbell a native of Harris, OK and graduated from Oklahoma State University.  He has announced and provided sound all over the country for amateur and PRCA rodeos and bull ridings. He used his talents at the 2014 CPRA Finals in Angleton, Texas, and he will be announcing and providing sound at the annual Mike White Invitational PBR Touring Pro and Open To The World Pasture Roping during 2015 Easter weekend in DeKalb, Texas.



THE BULLFIGHTERS:  Colby Klumb rejoins the UAC College Rodeo this year, as he did the last. Co-owner of Bear Creek CrossFit complex in De Queen and former UA Cossatot student, Klumb is a three time ABBI World Finals Bullfighter, as well as fighting in the PRCA and PBR.

“The reason I chose to be a bull fighter is because the rodeo clowns were always my favorite growing up, said Klumb.  “My dad and uncle rode but that just wasn’t for me.”  Growing up in Mesquite, Texas, Klumb saw many great bullfighters like the late Jimmy Anderson and barrel man Frank McCain. Being a bullfighter is a dream realized for Klumb.

“I’ve been all over the United States, and it means a lot to be the one protecting the bull riders and getting to be around the bulls,” said Klumb.  “It’s a dream job for sure.  I love it!”

Justin Flowers is a 23 year old UPRA, CRRA, AND CPRA bullfighter, and a native of Bonham, Texas. His exposure to bullfighting began when his bull riding father realized that his love for rodeo was on the other side of the bucking chutes.  So Flower’s father started fighting bulls and he joined him when he was 18 years old.  Flowers grew up watching his father, knowing that he would follow in his footsteps. 

“Fighting bulls is what I have always dreamed about doing and I give all the glory to God for giving me the athletic ability to do so,” said Flowers.  “I am an architectural draftsman by day and bullfighter by night,” Flowers shared.

He works for Renlita Doors in Bonham, TX and designs and manufactures commercial size steel frame doors. One of the things that drives his passion for bullfighting is the Bible verse John 15:13, Greater love hath no man than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.

THE TEAM:  UA Cossatot Colts Rodeo has much to celebrate as they enter this year’s home rodeo. In 2014, the Men’s Team closed out the season tenth in the nation, with Team Roping duo Brody Braden and Tanner Caudle placing second at the National Intercollegiate Rodeo Associate College Rodeo Finals held in Casper, Wyoming this past summer. The Men’s Colts Rodeo Team includes sophomore Team Ropers Brody Braden and Tanner Caudle, both of Horatio, and freshman Team Roper Jace Woods of Conway. The Women’s Colts Rodeo Team includes sophomore Break Away and Team Ropers Whitney DeSalvo of Springfield and Marissa Robbins of Mena, Lacey Jo Singleton of Hope (also competing in Barrel Racing), and sophomore  Barrel Racer Ashton Bailey of Kirby and freshman Barrel Racer Madison Webb of Glenwood. The UAC Colts Rodeo Team is led by rodeo veteran Valerie Stone for the third consecutive season.

“I enjoy coaching these students not only in rodeo, but also in their education and career goals,” Stone said, “I invite everyone out for one of the best college rodeos in the region!”





Thursday's evening over 350 people attended the 70th Annual De Queen/Sevier County Chamber of Commerce's Membership and Awards Banquet at the De Queen High School cafeteria.


Those in attendance were entertained by the De Queen Show Choir which will be traveling to Florida next week to participate in the America Sings program and they were served by the members of the De Queen High School Cross Country team.


2014 chamber president, Megan Smith mentioned 11 new businesses joined the chamber in 2014, which brings the chamber's total membership to 150.


Smith then introduced the 2015 chamber president Susan Alspaw.


Awards were presented to the area Teachers of the Year. Each nominee received a certificate along with a citation from District 4 Representative DeAnn Vaught.


The De Queen Teacher of the Year nominees were Sarah Hooper, Brenda Clowers, Pat Higgins, and Jeff Adaway. The Horatio nominees were Tammy Russell and Pam Click. The De Queen-Mena Educational Coop nominees were Regina Grubbs, Lynn Nolen and Angela Harder.


De Queen's Teacher of the Year was Terry Brackett. Curtis Black was named the Horatio Teacher of the Year. The De Queen-Mena Educational Coop Teacher of the Year was Maricela Villamil and the UA Cossatot Teacher of the Year was Robbie McKelvy.


The winner of the Renovation/Beautification Award was Dr. Randy Walker’s office.


The winner of the New Construction Award was to UA Cossatot.


The Small Business Award went to First State Bank and the Large Business Award was presented to Tri-Lakes Services.


The Business Family of the Year was the Larry Romine Family and Travis Bingham was named the Citizen of the Year and the Lifetime Achievement Award was presented to Lygia Autry in honor of her late husband, Larry Autry.


 Banquet Photos




Bear State Financial, Inc., the holding company for First Federal Bank, First National Bank and Heritage Bank, has completed the merge of all three ban charters under one name, Bear State Bank.


The rebranding efforts, which affect all First Federal Bank, First National Bank and Heritage Bank locations in Arkansas and eastern Oklahoma, will be complete by the end of the first quarter of 2015.


Emerging from the rich history of the state, the new name is inspired by Arkansas' reputation as "The Bear State," earned in recognition of its abundant population of black bears in the 18th and early 19th centuries. That nickname eventually gave way to the Wonder State, the Land of Opportunity and then to the Natural State.


The new Bear State Bank will consist of 43 branches and two loan production offices in 27 cities throughout Arkansas and eastern Oklahoma. While the merger of the three charters was official on Tuesday, February 17th, the transformation to Bear State Bank's signage at the branches throughout these communities will take place throughout the first quarter of 2015.






Horatio Yearbook editor Alexis Richardson announced Friday morning that the last day to purchase a yearbook will be March 15th. Richardson said due to the cost of the yearbooks, the yearbook staff will not be ordering any surplus copies, so she said it was important that everyone to place their order before the deadline.


Richardson said students can order their yearbook online at or they can place an order in Mrs. Swift's room.


Richardson stated that with today's digital capabilities, graduation, prom, softball and baseball will be in this year's yearbook, however it will be in digital form, which means students who purchase a yearbook will be issued a special code that will allow them to see all of the digital uploads that were not submitted by the print deadline.


Richardson said the yearbook staff will be able to provide memories from class days, the awards banquets and other highlights that are at the end of the school year, including the announcement of Prom King and Queen.


Cost of this year's Horatio High School yearbook is $38.50 with tax and if you have any questions, contact the high school at 832-1900.






District 4 Representative DeAnn Vaught has been very busy over the past several weeks attending community events, attending sessions during the current legislative session and speaking with students at area schools.


Thursday night, Vaught attended the De Queen/Sevier County annual chamber membership and awards banquet and then sent some time reading to students at the De Queen Primary School Friday morning.


Vaught informed KDQN that things were going well in Little Rock.


Vaught reported that the House approved a bill that would allow school districts to make up days by adding time to school days, while several districts have canceled classes this week due to inclement weather.


She also mentioned that a bill was now headed to the governor's desk concerning the presence of a doctor when women are giving abortion medication.


Vaught stated if you wanted to provide some input on legislation, you may follow her on Facebook at Representative DeAnn Vaught.




NATIONAL FFA WEEK       2/23/15


Each year, FFA chapters from around the country celebrate National FFA Week, which is a week-long tradition that began in the late 40's when the National FFA Board of Directors designated the week of George Washington's birthday as National FFA Week in recognition of his legacy as an farmer.


The first National FFA Week was held in 1948 and this year, National FFA Week will run from Sunday, February 22nd through Saturday, February 28th.


And KDQN will be featuring area FFA chapters during National FFA Week. Many chapters will have activities throughout the week to demonstrate the diversity of FFA. It will also provide each chapter the opportunity to advocate for agricultural education.






Members of the Winthrop School Restoration Committee met last Tuesday and discussed holding a Bingo Night fundraiser on Saturday, March 7th at 6 p.m. in the school lunchroom.


Cost will be $1 per card, per game and the restoration committee will also set up a concession with all the proceeds going toward the restoration project.


Committee President Loren Hinton reported, they had moved the trophies and other sports memorabilia down stairs to the ground floor of the schoolhouse into the room that was previously used by the City of Winthrop as its city council room.


The schoolhouse also houses items representing residents who served in the Military and general history of the community.


For more information, about the Winthrop School Restoration Committee, contact Hinton at 870-584-6176.





Wednesday morning, Governor Asa Hutchinson presented his plan to elevate overcrowding in Arkansas' prisons and he said the solution is not a new prison, but would seek beds in existing facilities and develop programs to help released prisoners stay out of jail.


Hutchinson stated Arkansas needs to reverse the trend of repeat offenders by developing programs to change prisoner’s behavior.


Hutchinson's plan totals $64 millions dollars and according to Hutchinson's plan, $50 million dollars will be used to provide an additional 790 prison beds for state inmates. Hutchinson said $16.5 million dollars will be used to hire more parole and probation officers and treatment managers, as well as, re-entry centers. And, $2.8 million dollars will be used to provide alternative-sentencing grants to every district in the state.


State legislators and members of the Department of Community Correction applauded Hutchinson's plan.






A big issue facing the Arkansas legislature is figuring out a way to pay counties that are housing state inmates.


According to a Sevier County official, the county did not receive any funding for state inmate for the months of January, February, September and December during 2014. However, the county received a total of $82,000 for housing state inmates, which was above the counties forecasted amount.


They also stated monthly reimbursements are not consistent. They said it may be several thousands of dollars one month and then only a $150 dollars the next.


Senator Jimmy Hickey of Texarkana is working on legislation that could relieve some of the financial burdens that county jails are experiencing by filing Senate Bill 329 that will address the method and time frame in which a county jail is reimbursed for housing state inmates.


Hickey's bill stipulates the reimbursement to the counties be made on the 15th of each month.






The Department of Human Services has confirmed that a child who attends a preschool in Greenwood is being tested for the measles.


Arkansas DHS spokesperson Amy Webb announced they've notified the preschool that a child is being tested, however, there are currently no confirmed cases of measles in Arkansas.


Health officials say they have tested a 5-year-old girl and they should have the results by Friday.


The preschool notified parents by letter that they had been informed by the state's infectious disease doctor because the child was being tested and they cleaned the building and left the windows open for 24-hours, which is recommended by the Department of Human Services.






Horatio Superintendent Lee Smith posted a message to the patrons of the Horatio School District concerning an article in the Little River News that he felt may be a little misleading.


Smith explained to KDQN that the headline in the paper mentioned a Fiscal Distress List and then later in the article listed Horatio along with some other districts and he wanted to assure the patrons of the Horatio District that they were not in fiscal distress.


Smith said the district has also resolved its violations and will be removed from the state's standards list during an upcoming meeting of the Arkansas Department of Education and he reiterated the district is doing well finically.


Smith stated if you have any questions about the district's status, you can contact his office or the members of the Horatio Board of Education.






A Nashville man was arrested in Mineral Springs, Friday, February 13th in connection with a stolen debit card that was used to withdraw funds from an ATM at the Lockesburg EZ Mart.


According to the Mineral Springs Police Department, 41-year-old Kenneth Hickman was arrested after being interviewed concerning the incident.


Hickman allegedly used a debit card that was stolen from a home in Mineral Springs and withdrew $100 dollars on February 1st.


Hickman was reportedly identified by using the store's video surveillance system. He is currently being held in the Howard County jail on a $25,000 bond after being charged with theft of property and fraudulent use of a credit or debit card.





Two Howard County men have been arrested in connection with a burglary at a residence on Cornbridge Road. The break-in was reported on Thursday, February 12th by the homeowner, Tony Britt.


According to the incident report, several items were taken, including an Ipad, a flat screen TV and some handguns.


Howard County Sheriff Bryan McJunkins reported 26-year-old Steven Gilliam of Nashville and 18-year-old Anthony Wilson of Mineral Springs were arrested Friday, February 13th and are being held in the Howard County jail.


According to the arrest report, the two men were found to be in possession of two handguns that were reported stolen from Britt's home.






Tuesday night during a regular meeting of the De Queen City Council, aldermen discussed the city's plans to replace the Bradford pear trees that were planted around the downtown area, the procedure to close a street and the property located on Hervey Drive, which has been declared a nuisance.


Mayor Billy Ray McKelvy informed aldermen that the city was waiting on a letter from Pilgrim's Pride asking them to close the streets that run through the plant area before he schedules a public hearing on the matter.


McKelvy stated he’d received a bid from Gary Cunningham for the demolition of a house on Hervey Street that the council declared a nuisance during their January 6th meeting.


But, Tuesday night’s main discussion revolved around the Bradford pear trees in the downtown area.


McKelvy reported that the city had cut down two trees and was planning to replace them with crape myrtles; however, Alderman Teresa Bunyard reported that several downtown business owners had contacted her and said they didn't want the trees cut down.


McKelvy stated if a downtown business owner wanted to express their opinion, they could contact him at city hall or attend the next city council meeting.


McKelvy reported the leak at the intersection of Lakeside Drive and Stilwell Ave. had been repaired last Thursday. He said the source of the leak was an old, abandoned copper service line.


Aldermen also approved a resolution to allow Alderman Walter Smith sign checks in the absence of Mayor McKelvy and City Clerk/Treasurer Donna Jones.


The next meeting of the De Queen City Council will be Tuesday, March 3rd at 6 p.m. in the council room of the De Queen City Hall.






District 4 Representative DeAnn Vaught reported the House Education Committee passed legislation this week that will allow superintendents to make up missed school days by adding time to the beginning or ending of a regular school day, whether the days were missed due to inclement weather or emergencies. Legislators explained that this will allow teachers the opportunity to prepare for tests, rather than at the end of the school year.


The Education Committee also passed legislation to establish the Building Better Futures Program which will give intellectually disabled high school graduates a college like experience at the state's institutions of higher education.


The Public Health Committee advanced a bill that would give terminally ill patients the right to receive experimental treatment that has passed the Federal Drug Administrations phase one testing.






De Queen Police Officer J.J. Lopez reported that he witnessed a vehicle run a stop sign on Highway 399 at about 3 a.m. Sunday, February 15th while he was doing paperwork in the Don's EZ Storage parking lot.


Lopez conducted a traffic stop at the intersection of Highway 70 West and the De Queen Homesites.


During the traffic stop, Lopez attempted to identify the passenger who was a white male, but the passenger was trying to be quiet and according to Lopez didn't want to speak with him.


When Lopez asked for some ID, the passenger stated he didn't have any and told Lopez his name was Gary Mills and that he was born on January 6th, but after Lopez ran the name and date of birth there was not record of a Gary Mills.


Lopez was assisted by Patrolman First Class Wayne Baker who identified the passenger as Andrew Mills.


The driver, Kara McCain, gave the officers permission to search the vehicle and while searching the vehicle, they discovered a defaced green pill bottle that contained one pill in a purse.


The pill was identified as a Xanax bar and when Lopez asked who the pill belonged to; Mills allegedly confessed that it belonged to him.


Mills was arrested and charged with obstruction of governmental operations and possession of a controlled substance.






The First United Methodist Church and the St. Barbara Catholic Church will be holding Ash Wednesday services tomorrow.


The First United Methodist Church will hold a brief service in the Sanctuary at 12:15 and there will be another service along with Holy Communion at 6 p.m.


The St. Barbara Catholic Church will hold services at noon and 6:30 p.m. and both services will be bi-lingual.






During the February meeting of the Ashdown Board of Education, board members renewed Superintendent Jason Sanders contract for one-year, which will extend his contract through the 2017-2018 school year.


Sanders explained to KDQN that the extension provides the district with stability, plus the board voted to re-hire the district's certified administrators and directors.


Sanders reported the district is continuing to look at future facility projects and the board as asked the district's architect to render some plans for the renovation and re-purposing of the old high school.


Sanders stated by moving the Gifted and Talented Program to the old high school, the district could convert that building into an Alumni House with the cooperation of the Ashdown Alumni Association.


Sanders also reported that the district will receive $258,000 as a result of the high school lawsuit and they plan to use those funds to put a rubberized coating on the high school roof to stop any further leaks.


Sanders expressed his appreciation to the Margaret Daniel Foundation and the Parent-Teacher Organizations for helping the district purchase Apple computers for the Margaret Daniel Primary School and a Live Wire Zipline for the C.D. Franks Elementary campus.


Following an executive session, the board approved the hiring of Curtis Mudford as a long term substitute teacher for the Agri department for the remainder of the school year.






The holiday weekend was anything but a holiday for the members of the De Queen Fire Department, as Fire Chief Dennis Pruitt reported his department responded to five calls between Friday, February 13th and Sunday, February 15th.


Pruitt stated eight fire fighters responded to a fire on Glasgow Road where an apparent squatter caught their tent and property on fire which spread to some pine trees that belonged to the landowner around 3 p.m. on Friday, February 13th.


On Valentine's Day, fire fighters responded to two brush fires and then were encoded to help inform De Queen business owners that SWEPCO had planned to shut off the electricity in the city while they made some upgrades to a sub-station.


Pruitt said 14 fire fighters spent several hours checking on elder residents and helping them hook-up their portable oxygen tanks and assisting other residents.


Pruitt said the power was off in De Queen from about 8:45 to 11:45 p.m.


On the 15th, fire fighters responded to a false alarm at the elementary building.


Pruitt stated he appreciated his fire fighters being willing to drop their plans and answer the call when the community needs their assistance.






On Valentine's Day, Patrolman First Class Wayne Baker observed a man walking along North 5th Street that he thought had an active warrant for absconding.


Baker called the suspect by his nickname and he stopped and looked at Baker, confirming that the man was 36-year-old Michael Bowers of De Queen.


Baker reported Bowers continued to walk north as Baker advised him to stop. Bowers then turned west onto Wallace Street and began running. As Baker pulled up beside Bowers, he turned south and continued to run through an open area toward Collins.


Officer Baker reported he lost sight of Bowers and exited his patrol unit on Lakeside Drive where he was joined by Sergeant Chad Bradshaw and Patrolman J.J. Lopez.


Bowers was apprehended by Sergeant Bradshaw a short time later.


After placing Bowers into Bakers patrol unit, officers retrieved two flashlights and a small black bag that contained a clear smoking device that appeared to contain a white residue along with a small red plastic bag that contained a green leafy substance that was wrapped in tin foil.


Bowers was then transported to the Sevier County jail where he was jailed on the absconding warrant and then charged with fleeing, two counts of possession of drug paraphernalia and possession of controlled substance - marijuana.






Horatio Superintendent Lee Smith reported the Horatio Board of Education voted to re-hire the district administrators, last week, during their February meeting and he said the board approved renewing a contract with the Arkansas School Board Association and accepted the ASBA's model policies for their handbooks.


Smith reported the district also accepted an ethics policy for the district's food service director and board members approved his recommendation for the positions of surrogate parent and foster parent.


Smith stated Horatio State Bank was donating a generator to the district and he expressed his appreciation to the bank for supporting the school.


Board members also accepted the resignation of a bus driver and the maintenance supervisor as well as the transfer of three students from the De Queen School District to Horatio.





During the February meeting of the Ashdown City Council, aldermen voted to upgrade the lighting system at the city park with state-of-the-art equipment.


Mayor James Sutton said a woodpecker revealed the need for new poles. He said a pole was bumped and the lights fell of the top of the pole, hitting a city owned truck.


City employees informed Sutton that a woodpecker had been pecking holes in the pole for about four years and contributed to the weakening of the pole.


Sutton reported the council then voted to approve a five-year, $189,345 loan to replace the lights on the three softball fields. He explained the poles will be made of steel and woodpeckers will not be a problem in the future.


Musco will install 48 factory-aimed assembly light on 12-poles and they company will finance the project.


Sutton informed the council that Musco had installed the lights for the Ashdown High School track.


The project is expected to start the first of March and should be completed before the start of the softball season.






Two Clark County jail employees were arrested Friday, February 13th for the alleged battery of a Clark County inmate, according to an Arkansas State Police press release.


28-year-old Robert Williams of Arkadelphia and 25-year-old William Sayre of Nashville have been charged with 2nd degree battery of an unnamed inmate following an incident that occurred on or about February 9th. 


An investigation into the incident began early last week after the Clark County Prosecuting Attorney Blake Batson requested it.


According to the Arkansas State Police, the case is still open and the investigation is ongoing.






District 4 Representative DeAnn Vaught reported the House addressed the overcrowding of the state's prisons in terms of funding. She stated there are currently over 15,000 inmates being held in state facilities that were designed to house 14,330 and there are another 2,500 inmates awaiting transfer to a state prison but are being held in a county jail.


Vaught reported the House passed a supplemental appropriation of $6 million dollars to reimburse counties for housing state inmates.


Vaught said House members filed 26 Constitutional Amendments before the February 11th deadline, while Senators filed 14.


Bills that were passed by the House last week included a bill requiring elementary schools to teach cursive handwriting, a bill allowing a 17-year-old work the same number of hours as an 18-year-old, and a bill allowing anyone between the ages of 18 to 21 who have served in the military to qualify for a concealed carry permit.


On Friday, the House passed a bill that seeks to protect Arkansans from government policies that interfere with their right to exercise their religion. The House also approved Senate Bill 202, which would prohibit cities and counties from passing ordinances that would prohibit discrimination on any basis that is not protected by state law.


House members also voted to extend the regular session to April 10th and to allow Legislators to return to Little Rock May 8th to take care of any unfinished business.






A Little River County resident that was wanted for parole violations turned himself in to Sevier County authorities after eluding officers for three days.


38-year-old Casey Tallant surrendered to Sevier County officer about 8:30 p.m. on Wednesday, February 11th.


Tallant was then transferred to the Little River County jail on Thursday and made his first court appearance in the Little River County Circuit Court on Friday.


Tallant was wanted on parole violations for the delivery, possession and manufacturing of drugs and possession of drugs and firearms, according to the arrest affidavit.


Tallant was spotted by Little River County Deputy Jon Butler on Sunday, February 8th at about 4:30 p.m., but Tallant refused to stop and led Butler on a pursuit down Little River County Road 106. The pursuit ended when Tallant's vehicle collided with Butler's patrol vehicle.


Tallant then allegedly jumped out of the truck and ran into some nearby woods, leaving his wife and child in the vehicle.






Prior to the February meeting of the Lockesburg City Council, Mayor Danny Ruth swore-in Alderman Gayle Gathright and then they made a couple of changes to the 2015 budget.


Alderman Donna Gallaher made a motion to move $500 from the Contracts line item in the General Fund to the Publications line item and to add a line item for Publications to the Street Fund and then move $1,000 from contracts to publication.


Robin Rice of A.L. Franks Engineering presented the council with a copy of the advertisement bids for the Sewer Construction Project. She stated bids will be accepted until 2 p.m. on March 5th.


Rice presented a cost estimate for the wastewater improvements. The council then asked her to proceed with a Price Estimate Report so they can check on some funding for the project. Rice informed them that she was drafting a letter for the Arkansas Department of Environmental Quality to show that progress is being made on the project.


Rice also provided the council with the preliminary project cost on the Arkansas Highway and Transportation Department's Transportation Enhancement Program, which funding for the sidewalk and walking bridge project.


Buster and Becky Dellinger addressed the council with their concerns with a culvert that had been washed out on East Magnolia Street. Mayor Ruth announced that he would contact Sevier County Judge Greg Ray and request the county's assistance to replace the culvert.


Aldermen discussed the set-up of three mobile homes on K and B Lane that are not in compliance with city regulations concerning the set-up of mobile homes. Council members voted to approve the building permits once the homes are inspected and found to be in compliance with city ordinances.


Aldermen also voted to confiscate the water deposit of Morgan Hamilton and to write-off the remainder of the bill and tabled an adjustment request by Monica Sharpe until she provided proof that the leak had been repaired. 


The next meeting of the Lockesburg City Council is scheduled for Tuesday, March 10th at 6:30 p.m. in the Lockesburg City Hall.






Representative Nate Bell of Mena filed a bill in the Arkansas House of Representatives to clarify the definition of a person in Arkansas law.


The bill was filed on the heels of a landmark conviction, which Prosecuting Attorney Andy Riner was able to convict Melissa McCann-Arms of De Queen of introducing a controlled substance into the body of another person.


McCann-Arms was convicted in January of 2014 and sentenced to 20 years in the Arkansas Department of Corrections after giving birth to a child at the Mena Regional Health System, addicted to methamphetamines. Her conviction was upheld earlier this year by the Arkansas Appellate Court, but Judge Phillip Whiteaker said the state legislature needed to clarify the definition of a person in state law if they intended for this law to include unborn children.


So, Representative Bell filed House Bill 1376 on Friday, February 13th, to change the definition of person to "Also include an unborn child in utero at any stage of development."


The bill would also apply to injuries to unborn children caused by a person driving while intoxicated and battery on a pregnant woman.


Riner has also filed charges against a Polk County woman who is accused of introducing drugs into the system of her unborn child, as well.


McCann-Arms is currently appealing her conviction to the Arkansas Supreme Court.






On Friday, February 20th , over 1,000 high school FFA students from Arkansas, Texas and Oklahoma will be on the UA Cossatot campus competing in the annual Colts Classic Judging Contest.


Students will be competing in land judging, horse judging, vet science, electricity and more and UA Cossatot is needing some volunteers to help with the contest.


UA Cossatot Public Relations Director Alisha Lewis said you do not have to have any knowledge of the events to help because they need all kinds of volunteers, even if its only serving pizza.


If you are interested in volunteering, contact Kelli Harris at UA Cossatot by calling 870-584-4471.


Then February 26th thru February 28th, UA Cossatot will be hosting it's 5th Annual Rodeo at the Four States Fairgrounds in Texarkana.


This year's event will feature rodeo events with competitors from across the region and local residents are invited to support the Cossatot Colts.


The rodeo will start at 7:30 p.m. each evening and Saturday's event will feature a tribute to area military veterans.


Gizmo McCracken is scheduled to entertain the crowd. McCracken was nominated as the Comedy Act of the Year in 2002, 2005 and 2014 by the Professional Rodeo Cowboy Association.


Admission is $10 for adults and $8 for students. Children 5 and under are free. For more information or to purchase advance tickets, call 1-800-844-4471.






South Arkansas Refuges Complex is seeking the public's opinion about increasing the Quota Hunt Permit fees for Felsenthal National Wildlife Refuge, the Overflow National Wildlife Refuge and Pond Creek National Wildlife Refuge.


Beginning July 1st, the Complex is proposing to increase the current fee from $12.50 for successful applicants to a $5 nonrefundable application fee for all applicants and a $15 Hunt Permit Fee for those successfully drawn.


Refuge fee prices and structures have remained unchanged since 1996. Although the fees have stayed the same, the administrative costs for the Public Use program has continued to increase and the proposed modification would allow the Complex to retain a portion of the fees to supplement the overhead costs of the program.


To review the Recreational Fee Increase Proposal, go online at Interested parties will have until March 13th to comment on the proposal.


For more information, call 1-870-364-3757.


Maintaining Health Insurance Coverage Documentation for the Tax Filing Season         02/17/15

Gathering documents and maintaining well-organized records make it easier to prepare a tax return. They can also help provide answers if the IRS needs to follow-up with you for more information.

You will not need to send the IRS proof of your health coverage. However, you should keep any documentation with your other tax records. This includes records of your family’s employer-provided coverage, premiums paid, and type of coverage. You should keep these – as you do other tax records – generally for three years after you file your tax return.

When preparing 2014 tax returns, most people will simply have to check a box to indicate they and everyone on their tax return had health care coverage for the entire year. You will not need to file any additional forms, unless you are claiming the premium tax credit or a coverage exemption.

You will attach Form 8965, Health Coverage Exemptions to your tax return to claim a coverage exemption. Do not attach supporting documentation to the tax return. If you applied for an exemption from the Marketplace and received an Exemption Certificate Number, or you have other documentation to support your exemption claim, keep these with your tax records.

You will attach Form 8962, Premium Tax Credit to your tax return to claim the credit. Do not attach the Form 1095-A, Health Insurance Marketplace Statement that you use to complete Form 8962. Keep Form 1095-A with your tax records.

To find other tax-related information about the health care law, visit To find information about Form 1095-A and tools that will help in the completion of the tax return, visit





Tonight's meeting of the Sevier County Cattlemen's Association has been postponed due to inclement weather. The meeting was scheduled for tonight at 7 p.m. on the De Queen campus of UA Cossatot.





The Arkansas Game and Fish Commission is looking for a few men and women who are interested in becoming wildlife officers for the agency.


Wildlife officers are certified law enforcement officers with statewide jurisdiction and full police authority. They are primarily responsible for the enforcement of all Arkansas Game and Fish Commission regulations, but are capable of enforcing all state laws as well.


Wildlife officers work to apprehend poachers who are illegally taking wildlife to protect Arkansas' wildlife resources. Officers are also charged with the duty of enforcing state and federal boating laws on the state's thousands of acres of lakes, waterways and rivers. They teach hunter and boating education classes and participate in community and school-based programs, as well as, providing protection to the threatened and endangered species of fish and wildlife.


Colonial Todd Callaway said wildlife officers may be called on to work any hours, day or night and must work weekends and holidays with regular days off during on weekdays.


Arkansas Game and Fish Commission wildlife officer cadet training consists of classroom instruction, in-field training and hands-on applications. Cadets must complete 16 weeks of intensive training, covering 90 subjects.


The current job posting expires on February 20th.


If you would like to learn more about becoming a wildlife officer, you can download a printable brochure by clicking the link below or call 1-800-364-4263 or at






An Ashdown School District agriculture teacher plead not guilty last Tuesday to charges of allegedly stealing guns from the district.


41-year-old Terry Simmons of Little River County was arrested recently on two counts of theft of property for allegedly selling or trading shotguns that were owned the by the school district for it’s skeet shooting team.


A pre-trial date was set for March 31st and a trial date was set for April 13th by Circuit Court Judge Charles Yeargan.


Simmons is currently free on bond.


Charges against Simmons were filed after the Arkansas State Police were contacted by Little River County Sheriff Gary Gregory in January concerning the alleged thefts of shotguns, which were stored in a gun safe at the sheriff's office.


According to court records, the shotguns were purchased in May of 2008 from Gander Mountain in Texarkana, Texas and the money used to purchase the guns was supplied by a grant from the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission for $3,518.02. The grant promotes gun safety and hunting skills.


During the fall semester, Debbie Greathouse took over as the director of the shooting sport teams.


In December, Greathouse asked to inventory the 10 guns and on December 10th, she and Simmons went to the sheriff's office and Simmons opened the safe, and it only contained three shotguns.


Simmons allegedly brought three shotguns into the office that had been in his vehicle. He stated that he had been keeping them at his home.


On January 3rd, 2014, Simmons allegedly went to Davis and Jones Pawn in Ashdown and sold or traded three guns and a 20-gauge shotgun for a Winchester 270 model 70.


Then on March 27th, 2014, Simmons reportedly went back Davis and Jones Pawn and sold or traded a rifle and a shotgun for a Bar Browning 243 rifle.


Authorities confirmed the shotguns that Simmons sold or traded to the pawn shop belonged to the school district by using the serial numbers.


Simmons has been a leave of absence from the district since he was arrested in January.






Howard County law enforcement authorities are investigating a burglary that happened on Tuesday, February 10th at 10484 Highway 278 West.


Terry Spears reported the break-in and informed the Howard County Sheriff's office that a safe had been stolen, along with several thousand dollars and property totaling around $20,000.


A witness stated that they saw a white colored truck drive away from the residence at about 5:30 p.m.


Spears stated there it took at least two people to move the safe because it's so heavy and deputies reported it appeared the safe was taken out of the house through the back door, based on the drag marks on the floor.


Howard County Sheriff Bryan McJunkins is asking for the publics help in identifying the person or persons involved in this incident. If you have any information concerning this incident, contact the Howard County Sheriff's Office at 870-845-2626. 






Work has been completed to restore the historic town depot in Mineral Springs.


The Memphis, Paris and Gulf Depot was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1978 and was built in 1908 to serve the railroad, which connected Memphis, Tennessee to Paris, Texas.


Mayor Bobby Tullis said residents wanted to see the historic depot restored and displayed to the public. He says the building will be used to store city records and will contain items from the town's history.


Any resident that would lie to contribute an item or photo is welcome to do so.


Tullis explained the building is a wood frame structure with a double-width loading entrance on both sides and housed a telegrapher's office on the east end. He said it was the only depot ever built in Mineral Springs.






Next weekend is the annual survival skills weekend at the Daisy State Park on February 20th through 22nd.


Patricia Thomas said the weekend will start with an introduction to Geocaching on Friday from 3 to 4 p.m. followed by a meet and greet campfire from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. and stargazing from 7 to 8.


Thomas said Saturday with be jam packed with activities from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. with free workshops and a few workshops that requires a $5 to $10 dollar admission.


And of course the weekend will end with a survival skills challenge course beginning at 9 a.m. on Sunday.


For more information about the survival skills weekend, contact the park at 870-398-4487.



Counselor Appreciation Week at De Queen Public Schools    02/13/15

Counselors at De Queen Public Schools were celebrated the week of February 2.  This was a week of appreciation for the many wonderful things they do.  Counselors work with students, teachers, and principals.  They also serve as their building’s test coordinator for all state mandated exams.  The counselors in grades 6-12 assist students when they are choosing classes to take.  They put a schedule together for their entire campus.  High school counselors also help seniors acquire scholarships.  Pictured are the counselors for K-12. 

DHS  Ramona Hill and Sally Hennard

Junior High  Sandy Moore

Middle School  Linda Quinn

Elementary  Winnie Welch  and Jill Kramer

Primary  Krista Smith





Special Agents of the Arkansas State Police Criminal Investigation Division have arrested two Clark County Jail employees who are charged with Battery (2nd degree).


William D. Sayre, 25, of Nashville and Robert L. Williams, 28, of Arkadelphia were taken into custody today following an investigation that began earlier this week at the request of Blake Batson, Clark County Prosecuting Attorney.


On or about February 9, 2015 Syre and Williams are accused of the battery of a jail inmate.


The Arkansas State Police investigation is continuing.  Any questions relating to the administrative status of the two jailers should be directed to the Clark County Sheriff’s Department.





Tax-return season is well under way in the Natural State and across the country, but with that comes scam artists trying to prey on consumers.


Recently, a number of Arkansans have reported that they have received calls from purported agents with the IRS demanding the consumer share their private information in order to receive a refund or to pay taxes immediately to avoid being arrested.


These con artists commonly alter their phone numbers so it appears that they are IRS agents in an attempt to steal a person's identity or take their money.


Attorney General Leslie Rutledge said some of these con artists can sound authentic and some are very convincing, as well as demanding, but consumers should pay attention to some red-flags. She stated consumers should also remember that no government entity, including the IRS, will ask for your personal financial information through an unsolicited call or e-mail.


Recently, the IRS reminded consumers that an IRS agent will never demand immediate payment or call about taxes that are owed without first mailing you a bill.


They will also not demand that you pay taxes without giving you the opportunity to question or appeal the amount that they say you owe.


IRS agents will not require you to pay your taxes with a prepaid debit card or ask for credit or debit card numbers over the phone.


And, they will not contact the local police to have you arrested for not paying.


If you receive a call from someone claiming to be from the IRS or asking for money are encouraged to call the IRS at 1-800-829-1040 or the Arkansas Attorney General's Consumer Protection Division hotline at 1-800-482-8982.


For more information on the IRS scam or others, visit or






Howard County law enforcement authorities are investigating a burglary that happened on Tuesday, February 10th at 10484 Highway 278 West.


Terry Spears reported the break-in and informed the Howard County Sheriff's office that a safe had been stolen, along with several thousand dollars and property totaling around $20,000.


A witness stated that they saw a white colored truck drive away from the residence at about 5:30 p.m.


Spears stated there it took at least two people to move the safe because it's so heavy and deputies reported it appeared the safe was taken out of the house through the back door, based on the drag marks on the floor.


Howard County Sheriff Bryan McJunkins is asking for the publics help in identifying the person or persons involved in this incident. If you have any information concerning this incident, contact the Howard County Sheriff's Office at 870-845-2626. 






Dierks Mayor Terry Mounts stated he informed aldermen of the Dierks City Council that he is waiting on a report from the Arkansas Rural Water Association before making a recommendation concerning a water rate increase.


Mounts also reported that work should begin on the street resurfacing and rehabilitation within the next couple of months after the city was approved for funds from the State Aid City Streets Program.


Mounts informed KDQN that they city had ordered a couple of new vehicles for the water and police departments and he's expecting the water and sewer audit to be finished later this week.


Mounts said the state has started the city's legislative audit and the city will be looking for a new sanitation employee after the retirement of Larry House.


Mounts stated the city was doing well and ground work has started on the new Weyerhaeuser mill.


The next meeting of the Dierks City Council will be March 9th in the Dierks City Hall.






De Queen School District Media Relations Director Tammy Whatley announced several upcoming events on the campuses on the De Queen School District this week.


Whatley reported that the De Queen High School FFA hosted the Little River FFA Sub-Area Leadership contest on February 5th and several De Queen Students won a majority of the contests.


FFA members from Ashdown, Foreman and Horatio competed in the contest.


Whatley also mentioned that students at the De Queen Junior High School have volunteered to serve in different areas of the community, like Relay for Life and helping at the Sevier County Museum..


Whatley announced students are now signing up for the High School Show Choir and a Closing the Achievement Gap meeting will be held on February 24th in the administration office at 5 p.m.


Progress reports were sent out on February 6th and Whatley said if you did not receive your child's progress reports, you should contact your child's school office.


For more information about programs on the campuses of the De Queen School District, contact your child's school office or call the administration building at 584-4312.






Saturday night, the Foreman High School yearbook staff hosted the 2015 Miss Foreman Pageant and today they announced this year's winners.


In the Miss Tiny Foreman division, Kynlee Barraza was named winner. Carsye Young was the First Runner-up and Aven Rad Eddings was the Second Runner-up.


In the Miss Petite Foreman division, Mallory Abercrombie was named the winner and Skylar Kruse was named the First Runner-up.


In the Miss Young Foreman division, Kylie Forrest was named the winner. Michelle Smith was the First Runner-up and Angela Ridge and Ashley Hickox were named the Second Runners-up.


In the Miss Pre-Teen Foreman division, Ashalin Casper was named the winner and Ashlee Waller was the First Runner-up.


In the Miss Foreman Junior High division, Gabrielle Leon was named the winner. Nicole Scott was the First Runner-up and Marie Wright was the Second Runner-up.


And the 2015 Miss Foreman winner was Samantha Bell. The First Runner-up was Lauren Lovewell. The Second Runner-up was Michelle Anderson. The Third Runner-up was Elizabeth Purtell and the Fourth Runner-up was Laine Reich.





Office of Emergency Management Coordinator Walter Smith announced Wednesday morning that his office would be testing the counties tornado system this Friday at 3:30 p.m. if the weather permits.


Smith said the test will be canceled if there is a chance of inclement weather in the area Friday afternoon.






A suspect that's wanted for parole violations eluded deputies with the Little River County Sheriff's office Sunday afternoon after crashing his pickup and fleeing on foot.


38-year-old Casey Tallant of Little River County is wanted for parole violations for delivery, possession and manufacturing of drugs or possession of drug paraphernalia and possession of drugs and firearms.


Sunday afternoon, Tallant was spotted while driving a Chevy pickup on Arkansas Highway 234 by Little River County Deputy Jon Butler.


Butler attempted a traffic stop, but Tallant continued to travel toward the Oklahoma border. Butler was joined by Chief Deputy Tim Brown and the pursuit continued for about nine miles to Little River County Road 106.


The pursuit came to an end when Tallant's truck collided with Deputy Butler's patrol vehicle.


Tallant then jumped out of the truck and ran into some nearby woods, leaving his wife and 2-year-old child in the vehicle.


Members of the Little River County Sheriff's Office, the Arkansas and Oklahoma State Police and rangers with the U.S. Forestry Serviced searched the area for Tallant until about 10:30 Monday night, but they did not find any sign of him.


Little River County Sheriff Gary Gregory is asking for the publics help in locating Tallant. If anyone has any information regarding Tallant's whereabouts, you should contact the sheriff's office at 870-898-5115.






Park Interpreter Shelley Flannery of the Cossatot River State Park informed KDQN that the park would be hosting a Sweetheart Couples Hike this Saturday from 1 to 3 p.m.


Flannery said the park was also going to participate in the Great Backyard Bird Count this year and the public is invited to help them count the birds that call the Cossatot River State Park home.

Flannery said the park was attempting to catalog the birds so they can ensure the proper habitat is available for the birds.


Flannery said the Great Backyard Bird Count is held every February and thousands of people of all ages participate to help create an annual snapshot of the distribution and abundance of birds.


For more information about programs and events at the Cossatot River State Park, call 870-385-2201. 






Wednesday morning, Sevier County Extension Agent Rex Herring informed the KDQN listeners that the extension office was conducting its annual Coggins Clinic this month. Herring said you can call the De Queen Animal Hospital to make an appointment or call the extension office for more information.


Herring also mentioned the extension office would be conducting a basic tree pruning workshop at the Horatio High School on Thursday, February 26th at 1 p.m.


And, then coming up later this spring, Herring said they are planning a grazing school in April and a Basic Horse Owner workshop in May.


For more information about any of the extension programs, contact the Sevier County Extension Office at 870-584-3013.





Friday, February 20th , over 1,000 high school FFA students from Arkansas, Texas and Oklahoma will be on the UA Cossatot campus competing in the annual Colts Classic Judging Contest.


Students will be competing in land judging, horse judging, vet science, electricity and more and UA Cossatot is needing some volunteers to help with the contest.


UA Cossatot Public Relations Director Alisha Lewis said you do not have to have any knowledge of the events to help because they need all kinds of volunteers, even if its only serving pizza.


If you are interested in volunteering, contact Kelli Harris at UA Cossatot by calling 870-584-4471.





Monday evening during the February meeting of the De Queen Board of Education, board members heard a report concerning renovations on the old elementary building from Superintendent Bruce Hill.


Hill reported Dayco had completed their work on the old elementary building, but the district’s going to paint the building and make a few changes.


Board members upheld the expulsion of one junior high student and Hill explained why they approved the transfer of two students to Horatio and one student to Nashville.


Hill stated all district administrators were all re-hired.


Troy Cravens with presented a "Friend of the District" plaque in recognition of his service to the school district.


The next meeting of the De Queen Board of Education will be Monday, March 9th at 5:30 p.m.






Monday afternoon, the Sevier County Justices of the Peace meet in the Sevier County Courthouse and appointed David Wright as their delegate for the Arkansas Association of Quorum Courts.


JPs approved an appropriation of $1,000 from the Sevier County Assessor Judy Smith's Amendment 79 fund to upgrade a computer in her office.


Sevier County Judge Greg Ray asked the members of the Quorum Court to re-allocate $2,882 in the county Road Department Budget and he explained to KDQN what those funds will be used to purchase a truck bed with mud flaps for a 2009 truck that the county owns but does not have a bed on it.


Ray also talked about the county sheriff's line of succession. If Sheriff Bennie Simmons is incapacitated in any why, Chief Deputy Chad Dowdle, Jail Administrator Kim Culp or Investigator Robert Gentry would secede him.


JPs heard a report from Megan McMahen of Southwest EMS and she informed them of several upgrades that are coming in the near future including a new facility and a new ventilator for one of the ambulances.


She said the ventilators were being purchased with grant money for all of the Southwest EMS operations.


McMahen reported response time increased in October, but they have had a lot more calls over the last couple of months.


Several weeks ago Office of Emergency Management Coordinator Walter Smith asked area residents to put numbers on their homes, McMahen mentioned to the Quorum Court the importance of those numbers being large enough for them to see especially after dark.


Judge Ray also announced that Dollar Tree would be opening in the old Wal-Mart building next to the Tractor Supply Company and that Troy Cravens is the new juvenile intake officer for the area. He said this is the first time that a juvenile intake officer had been stationed in Sevier County.   





Coming up this March, the 2015 Arkansas Henry Awards Banquet will be held in Texarkana March 8th, 9th and 10th at the Texarkana Arkansas Convention Center.


Arkansas Travel Blogger Kim Williams stated there will several different categories in which awards will be presented during the event, including the Arkansas Heritage Award, the Grand Old Classic Special Event Award, the Tourism Special Achievement Award, the Outstanding Volunteer Award, Community Tourism Development Award, and the Natural State Award.


Williams said this year's Media Support Award was special because two of the finalists are from Arkansas. One of the finalist is Jay Lindly of the Morning Brew on KDQN in De Queen.


Williams said for more information, you can go to the website


The Governor's Banquet will be Tuesday, March 10th and during the Henry Awards ceremonies, the inductees into the Arkansas Tourism Hall of Fame and the Tourism Person of the Year will be announced.






The Arkansas State Highway Commission approved a bid for improvements to roadways both in Howard and Little River counties, according to officials with Arkansas State Highway and Transportation Department.


The purpose of the projects is to resurface and rehabilitate 1 mile in the city of Dierks and 1.6 miles in the city of Ashdown.


Both projects are being funded through the State Aid City Streets Program that was approved by lawmakers in 2011 and voters in 2012. This program provides $20 million dollars annually from the state motor fuels tax to assist cities with projects that are selected by a nine-member panel of Arkansas mayors.


C & F Construction of Smackover was awarded the two contracts. The bid for the Dierks project was $203,579.50 and the bid for the Ashdown project was $289,525.50.


They will be resurfacing Fourth Street in Dierks from Missouri Ave. to Main Street; Front Street, which is Old Highway 70 from Highway 70 to the city limits and Old Highway 70 North from Highway 70 to the city limits.


They will be resurfacing North Beech Street from Bryan Ave. to Main Street; Belmont Drive from Peacock to near Shadow Lane; Frisco Street from Fulton Street to Main Street; Gordon Drive; Lakewood Drive from Crestview Ave. to Greenview Street and Rufus Torrance Drive from Foster Street to Highway 32.


Construction is expected to begin in two to four weeks and should be completed by this spring.






 During the February 4th session of the Howard County Circuit Court, 24-year-old Aljawaun Cole of Mineral Springs plead guilty to residential burglary and theft of property for breaking into a couple of homes on Blue Bayou Road in September of 2014.


Cole was also charged with domestic battery in the third degree and was sentenced to 13 years in the Arkansas Department of Corrections.


And, 34-year-old Jessica Melton of Dierks plead guilty to driving while intoxicated and was sentenced to one year in the department of corrections. 






A firearm that was reported stolen in Sevier County was recovered February 5th when members of the Little River County Sheriff's office, the South Central Drug Task Force and the Arkansas State Police executed a warrant in Little River County.


On February 2nd, Deborah Akin contacted Sevier County Sheriff's Deputy Brian Hankins and informed him that she had discovered her handgun missing on January 29th.


Akin stated she kept the handgun in the glove compartment in her vehicle and that the only time the vehicle hadn't been locked was when she had the oil changed at a Toyota dealership and that the only other person that had access to her vehicle was her son, 18-year-old Hunter Hughes of Ashdown.


After taking Akin's report, Hankins notified NCIC that the gun had been stolen.


After the firearm was recovered in Little River County, Hughes was interviewed by Deputy Hankins at the Sevier County Sheriff's Office concerning the stolen gun.


Hughes reportedly informed Hankins that he was staying with him mom during the Thanksgiving holiday and took the pistol. He also stated that he had planned to sell the gun, but the guy he was going to sell it to, wouldn't give him the money.


Hughes was arrested and charged with theft of property.



2015 POLAR PLUNGE  02/10/15

It's time to be freezin' for a reason!  The 2015 Polar Plunge participants will jump into the really cold winter water of the outdoor pool at Minton's Sportsplex in Texarkana, Texas, on Saturday, February 21.  BRRR!

Plungers, both individuals and in teams, take the annual daring dip in support of Special Olympics Arkansas and to raise money for and awareness of the mission Special Olympics represents.  Also known by the acronym SOAR, Special Olympics Arkansas works to provide year round sports training and Olympic-type competition for children and adults with intellectual disabilities in Arkansas.

Currently, more than 14,000 Special Olympics athletes participate in training and compete in a year-round program of 20 different sports, including aquatics, track and field, gymnastics, soccer, basketball, tennis, golf, powerlifting, and other sports at the local, regional, state and international levels.  SOAR states that "the vision of Special Olympics Arkansas is to transform communities by changing lives through sports.  Our athletes are training for life itself."

Registration for the 2015 Polar Plunge in Texarkana is at 10:00 a.m., with awards at 10:45 and the icy plunge at 11:00.  Awards will be presented to the individual and team with the best costumes, as well as to those who raised the most money.  

A $50 minimum donation per plunger allows the individual to plunge and own an official Plunge t-shirt.  In addition, collected donations of $250 adds a beach towel, $500 earns all of that plus a 60"x 50" fleece sherpa blanket, and $1000 also adds a 32-can rolling cooler. 

Special Olympics is more than medals or winning.  It's the special athletes who are at the heart of the movement.  Anyone interested in donating or bravely showing support by "taking the plunge" can contact Ann Hudson at 501-993-7610 or

In Ashdown, contact Elisha Stone at 870-898-4420/4410 or  Please make checks payable to Special Olympics Arkansas.



Over 77% of the young ladies who attend Margaret Daniel Primary School in Ashdown were escorted by handsome fathers or grandfathers to the Father & Daughter Winter Wonderland on the evening of January 29.  The special event was one of the parent nights planned throughout the year by the MDP staff.

The school was filled with beautiful little princesses as the girls, all dressed for the evening, led their charming escorts through ten literacy/math stations with such titles as "Symmetry Snowmen" and "Do You Wanna Build a Snowman?"  Every station was decorated with the Winter Wonderland theme, including the stage for the father/daughter "Snowflake Dance" and the photo booth where the young ladies and their gentlemen posed for photos with Princess Elsa and Olaf.

By popular demand from the young men of MDP, the staff is now brainstorming ideas for a Mother & Son parent night in the near future.





Earlier Friday morning, 17 members of the De Queen Fire Department responded to a chimney fire on Elm Lane.


Fire Chief Dennis Pruitt said a woodstove was apparently the cause of the fire that originated in the a separate building from a trailer at 137 Elm Lane. The property belongs to Sherry Miller, but Alicia Mitchell was living in the structure.


Pruitt said the fire spread from the structure to a vehicle close to the building and the corner of the trailer also caught on fire, but firefighters were able to use the city's form system to extinguish the blaze.


Pruitt said the De Queen Fire Department was assisted by the Gillham Volunteer Fire Department and the Cossatot Volunteer Fire Department was on stand-by with two tanker trucks.


Pruitt said he recommended not only having your chimney cleaned, but have it inspected also.


Pruitt also mentioned the De Queen Fire Department is collecting fire dues from residents outside the city limits that are in the De Queen Fire District and that he would be willing to conduct fire safety classes.


For more information about the fire dues or the fire safety classes, contact the De Queen Fire Department at 584-7224.





JP Atkins of the Cossatot Friends of the NRA announced the 2015 Friends of the NRA Banquet will be held Saturday, March 7th at 5:30 p.m. in the De Queen High School cafeteria.


Atkins said the cost is $30 per person or you can purchase special packages and this year they will be giving away fewer door prizes so they don't expect the banquet to last as long as it has in the past.


Atkins mentioned that they also had table packages available along with an early bird registration drawing for those who register before March 1st.


Atkins explained the Cossatot Friends of the NRA help several local groups with the proceeds from their yearly banquet.


For more information or to register for the Friends of the NRA banquet, call Monte Bartek at 279-3239 or Atkins at 584-9557. You can also stop by Bakers Bargain House.






The JoAnn Walters Elementary Quiz Bowl team won the De Queen-Mena Educational Cooperative Quiz Bowl which was held on January 30th.


Team members included Kamry Kelley, Macy Eckert, Kaden Helms, Emily Gordon, Jason Eudy, Kohl Kersey, Kai Oglesby and Darci Jones.


The team is coached by the elementary Gift and Talented Specialist, Dana Ray.






Dean Filppula of Shreveport, Louisiana said he learned the diamond search area had recently been plowed, which loosens the diamond-bearing soil and the rains came, which helps bring more diamonds to the surface during his recent vacation to the area. So, he visited the park to try his luck and it paid off because he found a 2.01 carat diamond Tuesday afternoon.


Park Interpreter Waymon Cox said the diamond is a light, yellow stone in the shape of a wedge and about the size of an English pea.


Cox noted conditions are perfect of diamond hunting right now, following the plowing and rain. He said diamonds are a bit heavy for their size, and they lack static electricity, so rainfall slides the dirt off the diamonds that are on the surface of the search field leaving them exposed. He said when the sun comes out, they'll sparkle and get noticed.






Many times what makes Tax Day stressful is the procrastination of waiting to prepare those returns until the day they are due. Consumers should decide now on how they will go about preparing their tax returns, either by preparing them themselves or by seeking assistance from a professional tax preparer.


Every year there seems to be more regulations and forms related to tax filing. Some Arkansas consumers may choose to seek assistance with their tax preparations rather than crunching number and reviewing documents themselves.


So, Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge issued a consumer alert to encourage Arkansans to plan in advance on how they will file their returns and to inform them about some of the free tax preparation options that are available to them.


The IRS offers free e-filing to all tax payers through brand name software and online. Taxpayers who earned less than $58,000 in adjusted income in 2014 are eligible to receive free online filing help at


The IRS also offers free, in-person tax filing and preparation assistance through the Tax Counseling for the Elderly and the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance programs. For more information, visit or call 1-888-227-7669.


Consumers who chose to pay for help should shop around for the best price and its recommended that you choose a well-qualified and reputable tax preparer.


After having your taxes prepared, you should read, review and ask questions. You should also check and see if they have a Preparer Tax Identification Number that's been issued by the IRS, and ask if their business is open year round.


For more information on tax preparation, contact the Attorney General's office at or call 1-800-482-8982.






Cindy Frachiseur of the Horatio School District announced this week that they would be hosting several events on Thursday, February 12th beginning at about 2 p.m. at the Horatio Elementary.


Frachiseur said they will also be holding the Elementary Art Show along with Pre-K and Kindergarten registration at the same time.


Frachiseur said the district would be hosting a Financial Aid workshop at the high school at 6 p.m.


During the Financial Aid Workshop, parents and students will learn about the requirements for the Arkansas Lottery Scholarship, financial aid deadlines and other scholarships.


Frachiseur also mentioned that parent/teacher conferences will also be held from 2 to 7 p.m.



Students from De Queen High School competed at the District 4 FBLA competition in Hope on February 4.  Nineteen students and two teachers attended the event.  District 4 covers Sevier, Little River, Miller, Howard, Lafayette, Montgomery, Garland, Saline, Hot Springs, Hempstead, Columbia, Nevada, Clark, and Pike counties.  Cody Lites was elected as Reporter for District 4 for the 2015-2016 school year.  Students that placed and will progress to state are.

1st Place- Emerging Business Issues- Jessica Rogers and Anna Grace Cauley

1st Place- Electronic Career Portfolio- Jessica Miller

2nd Place- Securities and Investments- Jacob Bunyard

3rd Place- Public Speaking- Cody Lites

3rd Place- Marketing- Shane Blankenship and Tara Montgomery

4th Place- Public Speaking II- Danielle Duggan

4th Place- Insurance and Risk Management- Habram Martinez

Pictured on the front row right to left are Anna Grace Cauley, Margaret Parker, Elizebeth Downs, Tara Montgomery, Abigail Angeles, and Alexandra Martinez.  Students on the middle row are Habram Martinez, Jessica Rogers, Harmoney Rich, Morgan Sweeden, Mallory Miller, Montie Hennard, and Mrs. Jennifer Collier.  On the back row are Mr. Chad Lites, Jessica Miller, Cody Lites, Jacob Bunyard, Shane Blankenship, Paige Morphew, Danielle Duggan, and Tanner Lipsey.



Report on the January 2015 Chalice Cupboard Ministry   02/06/15


As this monthly report is made, it makes twenty years of food ministry by the Chalice Cupboard, as food assistance began in February 1996.


In January, the Chalice Cupboard assisted 78 families in Sevier County, with 133 adults and 57 children, totaling 190 recipients of food.  Distribution of food last month totaled 1,671 pounds from donated and purchased food.


Sources of donated food in January totaling 188 pounds were Saint Barbara Catholic Church (55 pounds), KDQN (41 pounds), individuals (8 pounds) and anonymous (84 pounds).  Purchases of food in January were $916.74.


Arkansas Hunger Relief Alliance, Inc. gave Chalice Cupboard a grant of $2,975.00 to provide food for recipients at Chalice Cupboard, and a $25 fee for membership in the Arkansas Hunger Relief Alliance, Inc.


Residents in Sevier County may receive foods in their need as the Chalice Cupboard at 315 North 5th Street in De Queen on Tuesday or Wednesday from 2:00 p.m. to 3:15 pm.  Note:  food distributions are given only once every three month period yearly: January-March, April-June, July-September, October-December.


Items suggest for donation this month are crackers and soup.




The Little River County Sheriff's Office and the Ashdown Police Department has started a county and city warrant amnesty program, which will allow persons with old warrants or fines to pay without penalties until March 7th.


According to the Little River County Sheriff's Office, anyone who has an outstanding warrant or a payment plan and has fallen behind can contact the district court clerk's office and the clerks will assist them.


Anyone with old fines is eligible to have the failure to pay warrant penalty fees dropped if the fines are paid by March 7th.


According to a spokesperson with the Ashdown Police Department, the program was designed to assist citizens by dropping the penalties that have been assessed, while collecting fines and eliminating warrants, so citizens can pay their fines without the fear of being arrested.


For additional information, call the Little River County Sheriff's office at 870-898-5115 or the Ashdown Police Department at 870-898-5640.






Wednesday afternoon, members of the Horatio Board of Education, administration and school staff gathered to hear the exit report from the Advanced Ed accreditation team.


Those gathered were informed about the district's strengths and weaknesses, but in the end, they were informed that the visiting team would recommend that the Horatio School District be fully accredited by Advanced ED.


Horatio Superintendent Lee Smith explained the team had been on campus since Monday.


Smith said the district began preparing for their visit at the beginning of the school year.


Smith reported that the Advanced Ed team agreed with the district's review committee concerning their strengths and weaknesses.


Smith said this visit followed a district review by the state's Education Standards Board late last year.


Smith said the district will receive the Advanced Ed team's final report in about 30-days.






District 4 Representative DeAnn Vaught reported Wednesday evening that bills that would impact public employees and local municipalities are moving toward the floor of the House and the State Agencies and Governmental Affairs Committee advanced a bill that would protect public employees from discipline or retaliation for using the state's Freedom of Information Act.


Vaught said the committee voted for a bill that would clarify the control of county election commissions in the event that a political party does not hold a majority of statewide offices. The bill will allow the use of vote totals to determine the control of the commission.


Vaught reported the City, County and Local Affairs committee advanced seven bills and among those bills was one that would allow cities to enter into a contract with an existing certified fire department in lieu of establishing its own department.


They also voted in favor of a bill that would establish guidelines for how a governmental body can determine water rates for residents.






The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission are seeking information concerning the shooting of a bald eagle in Pulaski County and the Humane Society of the United States is offering a reward up to $7,500 for information leading to the conviction of the person or persons responsible.


On January 31st, a bald eagle was found dead on Highway 10. It had a large caliber bullet entrance and exit wound. According to evidence recovered at the scene, a vehicle stopped on the shoulder of the highway near the eagle. Enforcement officers reported they believe the shooter was not alone and witnesses may have seen the vehicle stopped on the side of the road.


Although bald eagles are no longer listed under the Endangered Species Act, they are still federally protected by the Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act.


The maximum fine for killing a bald eagle is $100,000 with possible imprisonment up to one year.


Anyone with information should call the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service at 501-772-8010 or the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission at 1-800-482-9262.






The Arkansas Children's Hospital Foundation is asking everyone to send a Valentine to a patient at the Arkansas Children's Hospital.


Foundation Spokesperson Jennifer Pyron said they started this program last year and were amazed at how many Valentine’s they received from folks all across the country and from around the world.


Pyron said this year; they’re hoping to receive 150,000 Valentines.


She said to send a Valentine, all you have to do is go to and follow the instructions.


So help put a smile on the face of child and send a Valentine this week to the Arkansas Children's Hospital.






The Arkansas Single Parent Scholarship Fund helps low-income single parents who are pursuing a post-secondary degree and is administered by affiliate organizations and volunteers in each county of Arkansas.


Every month, the organization selects a volunteer of the month and Ira McDaniel was of Sevier County was selected as the Volunteer of the Month for February.


Jamie Marshall is the field director for Southwest Arkansas and she expressed her appreciation for Mac's dedication and hard work.  Marshall also stated that if you would like to volunteer with the Arkansas Single Parent Scholarship Fund, you can contact Mac at 642-2960.


Marshall said the program helps single parents earn a degree and she explained that students could use this scholarship for books, tuition or even gas to get to and from school.


Marshall announced the Single Parent Scholarship Fund would be working with UA Cossatot during the college's Dollars for Scholars events in Ashdown on March 10th, in Nashville on March 12th and in De Queen at the UA Cossatot Library on March 17th.


If you are interested in applying for a single parent scholarship, Marshall said you should check out their website. The deadline to apply for a Single Parent Scholarship is May 1st in Sevier County and March 20th in Howard and Little River counties.


For more information, call Marshall at 479-287-8213.



Horatio FBLA had thirty-five students attend the District IV Spring Leadership Conference held at University of Arkansas Community College at Hope on February 4th.  District IV is comprised of forty-eight FBLA chapters from 14 counties in Southwest Arkansas.

Nine students from the Horatio chapter received awards for their outstanding performance at this district competition.

       Cassady Rankin - 1st place - Intro to Information Technology

        Laney Baker - 2nd place - Intro to Business Communications

        Adilene Arellano - 2nd place - Networking Concepts

        Adriana Gonzalez - 2nd place - Database Design

        Gustavo Perez - 3rd place - Business Math

        Raya Lemons - 3rd place - Securities & Investments

        Eleuterio Sanchez - 4th place - Agribusiness

        Reece Black - 5th place - Cyber Security

        Kelsey Rodriguez - 6th place - Business Procedures

These nine students will represent Horatio as they compete against other winners from all seven districts at the State Leadership Conference on April 13-14 in Little Rock.

FBLA is a national vocational student organization for students in high schools and middle schools who are interested in business or business education careers.  Over 13,000 students in more that 300 high school chapters and over 4,000 students in 120 middle level chapters participate in Arkansas FBLA.  Benefits of membership are leadership skills, business competencies, community responsibilities, and self-confidence. 






The Arkansas State Highway Commission approved a bid in the amount of $3,441,766.12 from Surface Preparation Technologies of Pennsylvania for highway improvements in southern Arkansas.


The purpose of the project is to create shoulder and centerline rumble strips on selected sections of highways.


Construction is scheduled to being in two to four weeks and it should be completed in late 2015.


Area highways included in the project are: Highway 27 in Howard and Sevier counties; Highway 32 in Hempstead and Little River counties; Highway 41 in Sevier and Little River; Highway 71 in Little River, Miller and Sevier counties; and Highway 371 in Columbia, Hempstead, Howard, Nevada and Sevier counties.


More information you can check out or






Tuesday night during a regular meeting of the De Queen City Council, aldermen approved the 2013 Water, Sewer and Sanitation audit, approved the purchase of a water pump and heard the state of the city address from Mayor Billy Ray McKelvy.


McKelvy informed the council the 2013 Water, Sewer and Sanitation audit was ancient history, but it had to be passed for agencies that needed copies of it.


Water Superintendent Jeff Brown informed the aldermen that a 100-hp pump went out last week and needed to be replaced. He reported that he could get a pump delivered from Malvern by the end of this week and installed for about $5,800.


McKelvy informed KDQN that aldermen voted not only to replace the pump, but to purchase a backup also.