March 2024

Texarkana Magazine

MARCH • 2024

TEXARKANA MAGAZINE March | 2024 | Volume 5 | Issue 3

44. LIFE Always Learning 50. STYLE Maximizing Potentional

10. FINANCIAL Bank Profiles 14. BUSINESS Locally Owned, Nationally Known


34. cover/CULTURE Taste Buds 40. ENTERTAINMENT Good Evening TXK


44. & 58.

24. COMMUNITY Your Chance to be the Next Big Thing in Texarkana 26. COMMUNITY The Texarkana 100 Year Hall of Fame

56. THE MONTHLY MIX Easter Basket Ideas 58. TXK ROOTS Gary Kusin



If you could write a book about your life, what would the title be?

CASSY MEISENHEIMER Don’t Forget to Press Record I always seem to forget to press the record button while trying to capture the moments.

TERRI SANDEFUR 42 (Douglas Adams reference)

ALANA MOREL Girl Gang I am surrounded by girls at all times.

KARA HUMPHREY Taking the Long Cut Shortcuts make me nervous, and I have a tendency to overcomplicate things.

MATT CORNELIUS How to Pretend to be Normal There is a fine line between crazy and free-spirited… and it’s usually a prescription.

LEAH ORR The Girl That Never Learned to Text I am like an old lady

BRITT EARNEST Really? Chronicles of an Enneagram 8 Still trying to understand why people do what they do.

BRITTANY ROBLES Fashionably Late I tend to be chronically tardy, but regardless of time, a great outfit is a power move.

who still calls family and friends for little things!

KRISTIN DAVIS The Life of a Dreamer: A Perfectionist’s Tale of Optimistic Pursuits

LESLI FLOWERS Here For a Good Time In the immortal words of

BAILEY GRAVITT How I Found Jesus While

TIFFANY HORTON Loved by God Even when life stinks, I know I am loved by Him and that everything will work out if I’m just patient and faithful.

I Was Constipated You just have to know the story.

George Strait, “When I’m gone, put it in stone, He left nothing behind. I ain’t here for a long time, I’m here for a good time.”

I am forever doing the most, with optimistic exuberance, when the least will suffice.


ANDREW McELHANY The Key to Flexibility A book of understanding on how we as humans make plans, and God laughs!

RAY SANDEFUR What I Wish I Had Known Sooner The title explains itself.




D iving into the world of entrepreneurship and owning a business has been an extraordinary undertaking. Since launching my business in 2020, the lessons I have learned have surpassed all my expectations and my admiration for every business owner, large or small, has grown immensely. Texarkana Magazine is a testament to the power of a family-run business. It is a place where everyone contributes. My husband and kids play an invaluable role, supporting my vision from behind the scenes and giving in countless other ways. I am also profoundly thankful for my dedicated staff and their families who, without obligation, willingly contribute to our success. They are rock stars, and it is a privilege to be surrounded by committed individuals who share my all-in dedication to our business. Reflecting back to 2008, meeting Gary Kusin left a lasting impact on me. During our first encounter, his wisdom and insights were truly inspiring. He shared a personal story about a student council election he lost due to being outworked by his opponent. From that moment, he vowed never to be outworked again. This principle served him very well in life and resonated deeply with me. When I started the magazine, I was uncertain of the challenges ahead, but I was determined to work tirelessly. I grew up understanding the value of hard work, a lesson my dad instilled in me at an early age. Failure can happen, but if it does, it won’t be due to lack of effort. I remember working hard to prepare for high school cheerleading tryouts as a teen. I wanted it so badly, and to me, I had put in the work and was prepared. Despite my preparation, I did not make the squad that year. Obviously, at fourteen years old, there was a temporary moment of complete heartbreak that all my friends had made it and I had not. But as devastated as I was, I took from that experience a determination not to quit. I would just get better and try again next time. I learned that humbling moments are good, and I 903.949.1460 OFFICE 911 North Bishop Street Building C • Suite 102 Wake Village, Texas 75501 MAIL 2801 Richmond Road #38 Texarkana, Texas 75503



still believe that today. They are not fun, but they can be necessary. In this month’s issue, we celebrate remarkable companies that began modestly, and through dedication and persistence, have grown into nationally recognized businesses. We also pay tribute to Texarkana businesses that have been in operation for more than 100 years! That type of success is hard to fathom because it requires multiple generations continuing to persevere for a united purpose. As always, we encourage everyone to shop and support local businesses as often as possible. We were fortunate enough to hook up with Hot Tails Crawfish, who dub themselves the local crawfish kingpins, to make our incredible cover happen. Be sure and check out their tasty review from our Taste Buds. We appreciate the hard work and dedication that goes into each of Texarkana’s hometown businesses. Skip the online shopping cart and become familiar with the locals working tirelessly to provide for us here at home and beyond!





Texarkana Magazine is a multimedia publication showcasing the Texarkana area and is designed and published by Cardinal Publishing, LLC. Articles in Texarkana Magazine should not be considered specific advice, as individual circumstances vary. Ideaology, products and services promoted in the publication are not necessarily endorsed by Texarkana Magazine .




Texarkana Magazine takes great pride in acknowledging the skill and valuable contributions of the community's local banks and credit unions. These institutions are the benchmark of excellence, dedicated to ensuring their clients' financial well-being and confidence. To achieve optimal outcomes in financial endeavors, engaging with a professional is key. Expert advisors are there to enlighten you about your choices, introduce innovative concepts, and guide you through the journey ahead.

The financial professionals participating in this special advertising section provided the information in these articles. Texarkana Magazine and Cardinal Publishing have not independently verified the data.



What Sets Us Apart Founded on the premise of being “The People’s Bank”, Commercial National Bank (CNB) has served the Texarkana community for 60 years. CNB is the oldest, locally owned community bank in Texarkana. We have remained committed to the downtown area of Texarkana, striving to reinvest in our community and serve our community’s financial needs. It’s the CNB Way! Giving Back…


Services Personal Checking, Savings, CDs, and Loans Business Checking, CDs, and Loans Mortgages Electronic Banking Debit and Credit Cards

Founder George W. Peck, Sr. opening the doors to the first CNB location downtown

Commercial National Bank’s primary mission is to serve the banking and economic needs of Texarkana and the surrounding counties of Miller, Arkansas and Bowie, Texas. CNB has always been a responsible member of the business community and is committed to the best interests of citizens in Texarkana and the surrounding areas through living the core values of trust, respect, listening, being responsive, and striving for relentless improvement.

TO US, YOU’RE FAMILY. Farmers Bank & Trust

903-791-0490 WWW. MYFARMERS .BANK

What Sets Us Apart Farmers Bank & Trust has over 117 years of financial experience and currently serves over 30 locations in Arkansas, Texas, and Oklahoma. A strong partner to the bank’s communities, Farmers has dedicated over $1 million to Texarkana in the last decade. “Community is at the heart of everything we do at Farmers Bank & Trust. Our team is passionate about building lasting financial relationships based on our Core Values of Honor, Excellence, Adaptability, Respect, and Teamwork.” —James Bramlett Texarkana Market President at Farmers Bank & Trust

Services Checking and Savings Accounts Consumer, Commercial, and Agricultural Lending IRAs and CDs


TEXARKANA, TX 2900 St. Michael Drive 5600 Richmond Road TEXARKANA, AR 3601 E 9th Street 1102 Arkansas Boulevard ASHDOWN, AR 960 S Constitution Avenue

Mortgage Services Treasury Services Wealth Management Trust Management Mobile Banking








Right here in Texarkana, where Texas meets Arkansas, we have businesses making their mark on a national scale. Through ambition, innovation, and community spirit they have crossed geographical boundaries. Each feature celebrates not just the success but the journey of these enterprises—from humble beginnings to becoming household names in different industries. By making products locally with local talent, they prove Texarkana is more than just a spot on the map. Explore the diverse paths these businesses have navigated and the challenges they have overcome. Welcome to a showcase of excellence, resilience, and the power of dreaming big.




Abernathy Company’s current managing directors

Abernathy’s portfolio includes hundreds of products under four exclusive brands—Abernathy, Ralph Brothers Detail, Magic Cast, and GotDog—all manufactured in Texarkana, Arkansas. The company operates two distribution centers—the primary one in Texarkana and a secondary facility in Shreveport, Louisiana. These products are sold to wholesale and retail customers. They are used in a wide variety of categories like automotive care, bathroom care, odor control, floor care, food services, industrial cleaners and degreasers, janitorial supply, jewelry care, laundry care, pet care, personal care, and many more. Furthermore, Abernathy has expanded into premier warehousing and distribution services through AR3A Warehouse, boasting nearly 600,000 square feet of space across four warehouses strategically located at the juncture of Arkansas, Texas, Louisiana, and Oklahoma. This allows easy access to major interstates, the Texarkana Regional Airport, and Arkansas Railways. Celebrating 125 years of operation, Abernathy and its exclusive brands are known for offering dependable products and services year after year. Their success is grounded on their ability to adapt and listen to customers, deliver quality products and services on time, exceed their customer expectations with unparalleled customer service, and always operate with a strong sense of heritage and integrity.

INDUSTRIAL SUPPLY MANUFACTURER Abernathy Company Established 1898 76 Employees “Solutions today for a cleaner world tomorrow”

In the 1970s, Ralph Brothers Laundry became RB Chemical, expanding into industrial cleaning supplies and

contract cleaning services.

Abernathy Company began as Ralph Brothers Laundry in 1898, serving Texarkana and the surrounding area. Embodying a spirit of innovation that would define the company, the original owners began producing their own detergent to cut costs. As word got out about the high quality of those first products, others began requesting to purchase their growing product line. Thus, this fledgling manufacturing enterprise was born. In the 1970s, Ralph Brothers Laundry became RB Chemical as it began diversifying its product line and introduced industrial cleaning products, towels, tissues, janitorial supplies, and contract cleaning services. Entering the early 1990s, the company adopted the name Abernathy Company. Today, Abernathy Company stands as a diverse conglomerate serving hundreds of businesses and institutions. Abernathy manufactures and sells a comprehensive line of professional-grade cleaning chemicals, solutions, and services for industrial, institutional, commercial, and automotive applications. Although their primary customer base resides in Arkansas, Louisiana, Texas, and Oklahoma, they also serve customers nationwide and internationally.

PLASTIC MANUFACTURER Goins Plastic Source Established 1999 30 Employees “Fast, Affordable, Dependable”

In 1993, Plasco Designs, Inc. was founded by Barbara and Charles Wilson in Texarkana, Arkansas. This marked the beginning of their venture into manufacturing the first generation of work- in-process plastic totes designed for the food processing industry. Working alongside the Wilsons, their daughter and son-in-law,




offering diverse product lines that include injection molded plastics, compression molded plastics, and light gauge thermoformed plastics. GPS is a one-stop shop for all food packaging and processing needs. With the third generation at the helm, 2023 was a year of significant advancements for GPS, which included a 20,000-square-foot expansion and the launch of its largest production line to date. The family is excited to continue growing in the Texarkana community for decades to come.

A Goins ad from over 20 years ago featuring John David, Michael, and Charlie Goins

DeAnn and Reggie Goins, developed a plastic pallet compatible with Plasco’s work-in-process totes. In 1999, Reggie and DeAnn’s entrepreneurial spirit led them to establish Goins Plastic Source, Inc. (GPS) in the same city. Expanding their product line, GPS began manufacturing light gauge thermoformed portion control trays, in addition to plastic pallets, to serve the food processing industry. The leadership landscape of Plasco Designs underwent significant changes when Charles Wilson passed away in 2001, followed by Barbara Wilson’s retirement in 2003. This transition led Reggie and DeAnn to assume management roles at Plasco Designs, integrating its customer service department with that of GPS. Under their leadership, both entities experienced steady growth. This year, Plasco will celebrate its thirtieth year of incorporation while GPS celebrates its twenty-fifth. Entering the third generation, Reggie serves as President, and DeAnn holds the positions of Chief Executive Officer and Chief Financial Officer. They now work alongside their three sons, Michael, John David, and Charlie Goins. Michael joined the company in 2016 and is currently the Chief Operating Officer, while Charlie took on the role of Vice President of Sales in 2018. John David entered the company in 2019 as the Chief Accounting Officer, further solidifying the family’s commitment to their businesses. Today, Goins Plastic Source, Inc. offers a wide variety of custom packaging solutions to fit any need. In fact, if you had a box of chocolates this past Valentine’s Day, there is a chance your delicious candy was packaged in a GPS tray. The company prides itself on

TRUCK BODY AND TRAILER MANUFACTURER Ledwell Established 1946 619 Employees “Not just well made. Ledwell made.” Upon returning from World War II in 1946, Buddy Ledwell, and his father, L.W. Ledwell Sr., founded a lumber company known as Ledwell & Son. One day, Buddy needed a certain type of trailer to haul lumber, so he rolled up his sleeves and welded the frame he needed to get the job done. The innovation caught the eye of a neighboring farmer who saw the trailer and asked, “Where’d you get that? I need one!” So, a new trailer-building venture began. Business soon expanded, and the company’s burgeoning side business—building pickup racks and livestock trailers—quickly grew into the company’s primary focus. When a farmer or a feedlot owner identified a problem with their equipment, Buddy and his father found a way to manufacture a solution. In 1955, the company solidified its presence in the manufacturing industry by incorporating and establishing its first truck shop at the corner of Robison Road and Waco Street in Texarkana, Texas. Long hours, hard work, dedication, and determination from Buddy and his family were the keys to building Ledwell into what it is seven decades later—a growing American manufacturing company blessed with many dedicated employees on two sites in Texarkana with more good Ledwell people in North Carolina. Buddy had a keen sense of his customers’ needs, sometimes even before they did, customizing products to respond to their evolving demands. From its inception, the hallmark of Ledwell has been its commitment to

The Goins family at their 20-year celebration (L-R) Michael, Reggie, DeAnn, John David, and Charlie Goins.




Texarkana native Jay Simmons to acquire the operations known as Texarkana Truck Center Inc. This partnership served as the cornerstone for the formation of Lonestar Truck Group, which expanded to 25 locations following its merger with TAG Truck Center in 2018, and changing the name to TNTX, LLC. Today it showcases a commitment to a family-oriented business approach. From that simple beginning, Lonestar Specialty Vehicles sought to serve a need in the industry. With a customer having a need and a history of knowing trucks, LSV evolved into a manufacturer of electric terminal tractors in Texarkana, Texas. LSV and TNTX support 200 employees in the Texarkana region, demonstrating a commitment to the community and operating under foundational principles of integrity, excellence, and respect. The transformation of LSV into a prominent electric truck manufacturer was accelerated by a project for a major grocery chain in San Antonio, which aimed to adopt fully electric terminal tractors across its warehouses. This initiative was facilitated by a long-standing partnership with Dana Inc., renowned for their electric component expertise, and led to the development of a fully electric terminal tractor in 2018. LSV set out to engineer a cohesive, fully integrated product, distinguishing itself from the practice of assembling disparate parts. By 2019, LSV had introduced its inaugural terminal tractor, distinguished by enhanced power and extended battery life, capable of 24-hour operations without the need to recharge for 22 hours. Subsequently, LSV has ascended to the position of the second-leading supplier in the EV Terminal Tractor market, serving major corporations nationwide that are committed to emission reduction and sustainability initiatives. In 2023, LSV achieved a significant milestone by divesting the intellectual property of

Ledwell employs many welders for its manufacturing process.

excellence for its customers. This principle remains central to its identity and the key to its ever-growing success. Seventy-eight years later, Ledwell continues to manufacture custom trailers and truck bodies catering to a wide range of industries, from water and feed trucks to their patented hydraulic trailers, serving a global clientele. Whenever there’s a requirement for a truck or trailer to execute a specific task or transport a particular piece of equipment, Ledwell manufactures a solution.

An electric terminal tractor, also known as a yard spotter, is used to move trailers in a large-scale warehouse setting.

its Terminal Tractors to the world’s leading terminal tractor market entity while continuing its

ELECTRIC TERMINAL TRACTOR MANUFACTURER Lonestar Specialty Vehicles Established 2014 60 Employees LSV is a division of TNTX, LLC with 1,300 employees “Sustainable Manufacturing for an Electric Tomorrow”

manufacturing and supply operations. With a workforce of 60 employees and an ambition

to double this number in the coming year, LSV is dedicated to

Lonestar Specialty Vehicles (LSV) was established in Texarkana, Texas, in 2014, emerging as an offshoot of a foundational enterprise that specialized in the sales and service of Class 8 tractors and trailers. The inception of the company traces back to Durk Corley’s acquisition of a single dealership in 1966. The year 2007 marked a significant development when Vic Corley partnered with

contributing significantly to the Texarkana community, steadfastly adhering to its core principles of doing what is right, striving for excellence, and treating others with respect.




the day’s production. Within a few years, a modest but healthy furniture factory was humming along in East Texas. By 1969, the business had outgrown the small factory, necessitating the construction of a larger facility, and it has increased in size several times since. The company has consistently welcomed technological advancements in upholstery manufacturing, investing in automated systems for fabric and leather cutting, wood panel processing, and foam fabrication, thereby achieving industry-leading order-to-shipment cycle times and enhancing product quality. These advancements, combined with a skilled and motivated workforce under dynamic management, have secured the company’s longevity. “Crafted with pride in the USA” encapsulates Mayo’s spirit. They take enormous pride in the fact that they make their products right here at home. By sourcing materials within America, they not only produce American-made goods but also bolster local jobs and commerce. Their core mission revolves around maintaining trust and ensuring they create furniture that customers are proud to showcase in their homes. More than five decades later, the Mayo family business has expanded to over 200 employees, serving customers nationwide and abroad. Following the retirement and later passing of Linn Mayo in the spring of 2017, leadership of the company transitioned to Mike Mayo, who subsequently retired in 2020. Today his sons Stephen, Ben, and Patrick are at the helm, with Linn’s guiding principle, “Be the captain of your ship,” profoundly influencing their leadership and the operations within the company. Family has always been the number one priority, and the values shared by Linn and his family remain the cornerstone of how Mayo does business today.

FURNITURE MANUFACTURER Mayo Established 1965 225 Employees “Specializing in high-quality upholstered furniture in fabric and leather, from chairs and ottomans to full sectional suites.”

In the fall of 1965, Linn Mayo gathered his young family around the kitchen table for a serious discussion. Across from him sat his wife, Dean, and their two sons, Mike and Gary. The Mayo family was at a crossroads—Linn’s tenure as general manager of a modest bedding and furniture manufacturer ended suddenly after the death of the owner, and he faced a pivotal career decision. He could accept a comfortable offer already in hand and move the family from Texarkana or take a leap of faith and start a new business. Linn, with the support of his family, took the leap. Shortly thereafter, an old warehouse building was repurposed into a manufacturing space. Linn would often jokingly boast about his little factory as “24,000 square feet of two floors with a post every 12 feet.” A handful of key suppliers, believing in Linn’s vision and eager to support his start-up, provided raw material inventory on a “pay for it when you can” basis. While Linn orchestrated the business’ setup, Dean mastered the art of cutting and sewing mattress covers and took on administrative tasks like generating work tickets and customer invoices. The boys learned many of the factory roles and spent many late nights loading trucks after helping complete

HEALTH AND WELLNESS MANUFACTURER Rowe Casa Organics Established 2017 208 Employees “Natural products you can trust.” Rowe Casa is setting the standard for uncompromising, high-quality natural products that promote your health and enhance your home. At Rowe Casa Organics, the mission is to provide natural products for your health and home that you can trust. They

The founder of Mayo, Linn Mayo, stands at the center surrounded by Patrick, Mike, Stephen, and Ben Mayo.





relentlessly research and source the highest quality natural ingredients with unwavering standards. Honored by the trust people have placed in them, they work diligently to reaffirm their commitment to providing safe, natural alternatives for you, your home, and your families. In 2017, sisters Jill and Alicia embarked on a mission to detoxify their lives. Frustrated by the lack of transparency and truly safe, effective options, Jill Rowe took matters into her own hands. She started by making her own Organic Elderberry Syrup, a natural remedy known for its immune-boosting properties. Encouraged by the positive response, Jill began expanding her product range, creating more natural remedies and wellness products. The local demand continued to grow, leading to cars lined up at Jill’s place of residence to pick up products. Seeing the potential and call to help make a positive impact, Jill’s husband, Kevin, and her sister and brother-in-law, Alicia and Mike Guzzardo, joined forces to establish Rowe Casa Organics. This began a journey of deep research, learning, and development. It was

BEVERAGE MANUFACTURER Wine-A-Rita Established 2005 15 Employees “Not a margarita... A Wine-a-Rita ® ”

Wine-A-Rita is a refreshing adventure created in Texarkana, Texas, by two friends in 2005. Knowing that every good friendship comes with a few good drinks, the founders put their heads together to develop a frozen wine drink. After much sampling, the recipe was perfected, and Wine Glacé was born. After much praise for the original creation, the brand soon expanded with additional cocktail mixes that formed the current signature line, Wine-A-Rita ® . The brand has garnered much acclaim, and the accolades continue to roll in! In 2022, Texarkana locals Cathy and Mark Van Herpen, along with their children Gabe and Matthew McBride and Molly Woolsey, took the helm of the business. As a family-operated venture with 15 dedicated employees, some of whom have been part of the company’s journey since its inception, it continues to flourish. Wine-A-Rita ® has made its mark both locally and nationally, often seen at various events with its signature traveling wine slushy trailer, available for festivals, weddings, and private gatherings. The company retains its signature tagline, “Not a margarita... but a Wine-A-Rita ® !”

Sisters Alicia Guzzardo and Jill Rowe are founders of Rowe Casa Organics.

essential to this team that the properties and benefits of natural ingredients used were intently and thoroughly studied. It is also essential that not only were products free from harmful toxins and preservatives but also that the highest quality ingredients are sourced. Every product is crafted with care and tested for effectiveness. Even as the business has grown exponentially, these foundational core values have remained central to its unwavering commitment to providing safe, natural, and effective products. The heartbeat of this endeavor is to empower individuals to make informed decisions about their health and wellness by offering the option of trustworthy and high-quality products. Today, Rowe Casa Organics continues to thrive, guided by the values of transparency, quality, and customer satisfaction.

Cathy and Mark Van Herpen (center) with their family, who all contribute to the Wine-A-Rita ® business.





Imagine Texarkana as a hub for innovation and entrepreneurship.

Pitch It Texarkana is your chance to make that dream a reality. Do you have a business idea that could transform Texarkana? This competition is all about empowering ambitious go-getters like you. This event will be held at Crossties Event Venue in Downtown Texarkana on March 26, where aspiring entrepreneurs will “pitch” their products, services, and technological ideas to a panel of judges for a chance to win $7,500. The second-place winner will receive $5,000, while the third-place winner will be awarded $2,500. Contestants will have exactly three minutes to “wow” the judges. This panel of local professionals will be looking for authentic and innovative ideas that will benefit the Texarkana area and further draw more talent and possibilities. Inspired by stories like the winner of the inaugural Pitch It Texarkana, Jesse Darby-Tillis II, who turned his e-sports gaming lounge idea into a reality, Ren Overlock, who revolutionized cargo straps with his innovative design, and last year’s third-place recipient, Felicia Coopwood, who expanded her mobile IV service, Healing Drops, this year’s contestants will have big shoes to fill. According to Coopwood, the impact of Pitch It Texarkana marked a pivotal moment for her startup. Since her victory, her business has been thriving, showing a steady increase in customer volume. Her prize money was strategically invested to enhance various aspects of her business, including securing membership to the Better Business Bureau, which enhanced the company’s credibility. To market, this creative entrepreneur launched a Facebook campaign and invested in promotional materials, including brochures, a tent for events, uniforms, and venue fees. This strategic investment and active community participation underscore Coopwood’s commitment to her services—offering custom vitamin IVs at home. “Preventative health is not a new concept; however, preventative health is often a second thought. I am working hard to change that,” Coopwood stated. Ready to join these winners? Applications are open for the 2024 Pitch It Texarkana competition and the deadline to register is March 8. Head to to apply and take your first step toward turning your dreams into reality. The public is invited to witness the innovative and inspiring pitches, a unique opportunity to see firsthand the vibrant entrepreneurial spirit and the transformative ideas shaping the future in Texarkana.




Businesses and organizations founded at the beginning of the twentieth century that remain strong today epitomize resilience. Withstanding monumental events, including a world war, The Great Depression, the attacks of 9/11, a global pandemic, and more, these century-old establishments have navigated periods of economic prosperity and downturn, strategized around new competitors entering the scene, and triumphed over older competitors seeking an edge. They are a testament to their founder’s power of vision and the unwavering dedication of a long line of loyal employees. For over a century, these Texarkana establishments have not only witnessed history but have also shaped it. Congratulations to these hometown businesses and organizations that have reached an extraordinary milestone, 100+ years of remarkable achievements and enduring commitment to our community.

We cannot confidently assert that this article encompass all entities established in Texarkana over 100 years ago. Should you be aware of any additional instances, please do not hesitate to contact us at .



ENTRY REQUIREMENTS FOUR MAIN CATEGORIES Architectural— Buildings, cityscapes, and/or landscapes; construction elements, architectural features, and facades in the Texarkana area. Altered Images— Photographs manipulated for artistic purposes by applying digital and/or traditional special effects (i.e., colorizing, toning, collage, photo composites, HDR, etc.) in the Texarkana area. Perspective— Events, objects, locales, peoples, or activities in the Texarkana area that convey a sense of place. INAUGURAL TEXARKANA MAGAZINE PHOTOGRAPHY CONTEST March 29, 2024 Deadline $ 250 Cash Prize for Overall Winner $ 100 Cash Prize for Special Category Winner of Texarkana HIT US WITH YOUR BEST SHOT Night Photography— Events, objects, locales, peoples, or activities in the Texarkana area that convey a sense of place after dark. SPECIAL CATEGORY

Photographers Island Smartphone Category— Smartphone photo at Photographers Island is a special category open to everyone in this year’s photo contest. This category will also offer a cash prize for the winner. The photo must be emailed from a Smartphone and must contain a visible portion of the photographer's island. Entries in this category should have a sense of place, the highest level of creativity, and ‘I can’t believe they did that’ intrigue. Please observe all local, state, and federal laws. Entrants may be disqualified in the event of any harm or damage to persons, animals, or public property. The smartphone category is limited to one photo entry per participant, so email only your best photo.

Scan here to visit our website for entries, complete photo contest rules, and additional information.


Established 1872 Celebrating 152 Years

Established 1882 Celebrating 142 Years

Although Pharma Nobis, LLC is a new entity (formed in 2022), its roots go back to 1872, as Hutchison Medicine Company, founded by J. C. (John) Hutchison in Linden, Texas. Hutchison traveled through East Texas in a covered wagon selling Big Head Liniment, oils and salves that were remedies for “helping people feel better.” While working in the drug business in Queen City, J.C. developed a healing preparation known as Hutchison’s Magic Oil. The demand for Magic Oil grew so quickly that Mr. Hutchison gave up his drug business and focused his business on manufacturing and selling it. In 1908, Hutchison Medicine Company moved from Queen City to Texarkana, Texas, where it was run by John and his two sons, Raymond and Edwin. In 1947, following the death of John Hutchison, the company was sold to Pearson Walsh, a local wholesale druggist, and to Otto Witzansky, a local retail druggist. This was a major change, identifying Hutchison Medicine Company as a manufacturer and distributor of first-aid products, maintaining the goal to “help people feel better.” Products were initially distributed to major drug wholesalers throughout the United States. Five years later, Walsh became the sole owner and renamed the company Humco. In 2018, Humco was acquired by Fagron, Inc., a company focused on specialty pharma services. In 2022, Pharma Nobis was created to purchase the Texarkana facility and all its products and services. Today, Pharma Nobis manufactures well over 150 products, including pharmaceutical topical and transdermal creams, syrups, oral suspension vehicles, and additional pharmaceutical compounding agents. The company continuously strives to create new value-added products that will help meet unmet patient and pharmacist needs around the world.

In 1882, with business savvy and handsome handwriting, Fred Offenhauser and partner Kelsey founded an insurance agency in the heart of downtown Texarkana to become Offenhauser & Co. Offenhauser likely insured the first automobile in Texarkana and later pioneered a risk management pool for utilities throughout the central United States. Beyond offering exceptional insurance for homes, automobiles, and businesses, Offenhauser had vital roles in the community’s development. The agency was instrumental in founding the Texarkana Chamber of Commerce (1905), contributing to the establishment of Red River Army Depot and Lone Star Army Ammunition Plant (1939), launching Wadley Hospital (1958), initiating the first K-16 STEM programs in the United States, and supporting the development of the new university campus for Texas A&M University-Texarkana (2006). The commitment of Offenhauser’s leadership is further evidenced by eight partners receiving the C.E. Palmer Award for lifetime civic contributions. While the firm has expanded, with offices in five cities and e-mail, websites, and social media replacing Mr. Offenhauser’s handwriting, their focus remains on Texarkana, your family, and business.

Established 1882 Celebrating 142 Years

The original business was incorporated in 1882 as the Hunter Transfer & Storage Co. in a warehouse near Union Station. Beginning as a humble railroad storage business their services grew to include cross dock facilities in addition to expanding into trucking and moving services. Under the leadership of the Trigg Family, they continued to expand and built a massive 30,000 square foot multilevel warehouse in 1926 at the corner of Broad and Elm Streets. Legend has it that some of Texarkana’s first Model T Fords were stored on the third floor. In 2000, the company was purchased by the Sandefur Family and renamed Grand Storage Solutions when it transitioned yet again to offer solutions to businesses needing to retain records for seven years. Today, they focus on all services associated with storage and certified destruction of office documents. The company now delivers old fashioned service in a modern world.

Established 1875 Celebrating 149 Years

Originally named the Texarkana Daily News , the Texarkana Gazette emerged from a merger with a fellow newspaper. It was acquired by C.E. Palmer following a stay over in Texarkana during Palmer’s honeymoon in the early 20th century. This marked the beginning of its enduring legacy. Owned by Palmer’s descendants across multiple generations, the publication has sustained a longstanding tradition in journalism.






Established 1898 Celebrating 125 Years

Established 1905 Celebrating 119 Years

Founded in 1898 as Ralph Brothers Laundry, the Abernathy Company originated in Texarkana to serve the community and surrounding areas. Embodying a spirit of innovation that would define the company, the original owners began producing their own detergent to cut costs. The high quality of these products soon attracted wider attention, leading to requests for purchase and sparking the birth of a manufacturing enterprise. In the 1970s, the company, then known as RB Chemical, expanded its range to include industrial cleaning products, towels, tissues, janitorial supplies, and contract cleaning services. This diversification marked a significant evolution from its laundry roots. By the early 1990s, it had transformed into the Abernathy Company, the name it carries today. The current incarnation of Abernathy Company has evolved into a multifaceted conglomerate. It serves a vast array of businesses and institutions both domestically and internationally, encompassing manufacturing, retail, wholesale, logistics, and warehousing sectors. This growth and success are attributed to the company’s unwavering commitment to customer responsiveness, timely delivery, consistent quality, and an enduring adherence to values of heritage, integrity, and service.

Since its inception in 1905, The Texarkana USA Regional Chamber of Commerce has been a partnership of businesses, organizations, and professionals working together to build a robust economy and enhance the community’s quality of life. Initially formed as the Texarkana Board of Trade by a small group of businessmen, it aimed to spur economic growth and prosperity in Texarkana. Early influencers mentioned in the minutes of the Board included William Buchanan, Fred Offenhauser, W. R. Grim, E. W. Frost, and Louis Heilbron, who each played pivotal roles in shaping its direction. In 1912, the Texarkana Board of Trade gained notable recognition by becoming one of the first 100 Charter Members of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, joining other pioneering cities like Houston, Texas, and Pine Bluff, Arkansas. As time passed, it became clear the Texarkana Chamber of Commerce was more than just two communities. It is a regional hub for commercial, medical, and educational opportunities for two states and multiple counties. It soon moved to a marketing position, defining its name as Texarkana USA Regional Chamber of Commerce to reflect its broader purpose and scope of activities. Today, the Chamber continues to act as a unifying force, seamlessly integrating two states into a single, cohesive community. It remains committed to being a central conduit for shared progress, embodying a singular vision and message for the region it serves.

Established 1903 Celebrating 121 Years

Bodcaw Bank, a cornerstone of Stamps, Arkansas, and one of its oldest businesses, opened its doors in 1903, aligning with the boom of a thriving mill town that included Bodcaw Lumber Company. At the time, this sawmill was one of the largest sawmills for yellow pine in the world. However, the landscape changed dramatically post-World War I, with the depletion of South Arkansas’ virgin forests and the subsequent closure of the mills. In 1975, marking a significant milestone, Bodcaw Bank moved into a new, larger building adjacent to its original location. Continuing its legacy, the bank remains deeply rooted in the communities it serves. It takes pride in its local ownership and management, emphasizing a commitment to community-oriented banking practices.

Established 1906 Celebrating 118 Years

In 1906, T.S. Grayson and Robert Warnock, Sr. had the vision to establish a community-focused bank in the heart of Magnolia, Arkansas, with the very simple goal of helping their friends and neighbors find financial solutions for a lifetime. Out of that vision, Farmers Bank & Trust Company was chartered. Over a century later, the bank has flourished, spanning five generations and over $2.8 billion in assets. Its reach has extended into communities across Arkansas, Texas, and Oklahoma. The vision may have grown, but that simple goal remains the’s the heart of who we are and how we serve.






Established 1914 Celebrating 109 Years

In 1913, Texarkana was a bustling hub of growth and prosperity, serving as a pivotal center for commerce across the four states area for railroading, agriculture, business, and timber. The city’s fortune was further enhanced by a group of affluent

Established 1909 Celebrating 114 Years

Logan Electric commenced operations on November 11, 1909, under the visionary leadership of George H. Logan, situated at 202 East Broad Street. Relocating in 1940 to 208 East Broad Street, Logan Electric has been in business for over 114 years on the same block in Texarkana, Arkansas. In the 1950s, Ed Felps joined the team under Logan, eventually acquiring the business with Dick Waddell in 1960, marking Logan’s well-deserved retirement. Since 1974, Logan Electric has blossomed into a family enterprise, with Rusty Felps leading the charge. The familial bond strengthened as Rusty’s wife, Sharon, joined in 2002, followed by their son Scott in 2012, ensuring Logan Electric’s enduring commitment to excellence for generations to come.

businessmen united in their vision to establish a country club that would rival the finest in the South. They pictured it as a marvelous tool to showcase to visitors and potential commercial interests that were considering locating in Texarkana. On December 19, 1913, this vision took a significant step forward with the election of the first Board of Governors, headed by T.L.L. Temple as president. Texarkana Country Club was inaugurated in 1914, featuring a modest nine- hole course with sand greens. Recognizing the need for a more distinguished and challenging golf course, the club’s membership in 1922 selected the renowned architectural firm of Langford and Moreau from Chicago to design what would become the club’s current esteemed course. This strategic move not only enhanced the club’s prestige, but also solidified its status as a local landmark in the region, reflecting Texarkana’s growing significance and affluence.

Established 1901 Celebrating 123 Years

In 1901, Alex Richardson established Richardson Funeral Home, marking the first funeral home in Texarkana dedicated to the African American community. Following Alex Richardson’s passing, his daughter, Emma Richardson Jones, continued the business. Her three sons, Elbert T. Jones, John E. Jones, and Roland F. Jones, and her husband, Theron Jones, continued to uphold the family legacy in the funeral business. Substantial changes came in April 2001 when Patrick Hill bought and renamed the funeral home Richardson Hill Funeral Home. The company is still engaged in various pioneering efforts. Although they have been through many changes, they still strive for perfection to ensure the realization of their new motto, “We are all about service.”

Established 1924 Celebrating 100 Years

United Way of Greater Texarkana has been around since 1924; however, known then as the Texarkana Community Chest. The goal was simple: use a single campaign to benefit multiple agencies. "In the past 100 years, United Way of Greater Texarkana has put back $50 million into this community,” said Danny Gray, past Campaign Chair in 2011. As Texarkana grew, so did the needs in our community. United Way of Greater Texarkana initially partnered with Caddo Area Boy Scouts and The Salvation Army to support programs that would positively impact the Greater Texarkana area. Currently, the United Way collaborates with area nonprofits, local government, and schools to effect positive change in our community. This has been their mission for the last 100 years. They are still dedicated to improving lives in the Greater Texarkana area and support 30+ which focus on Health, Education, and/or Financial Stability. UWGT President/CEO Mark Bledsoe says, "We are still proudly serving Northeast Texas and Southwest Arkansas and looking forward to the next 100 years!"






A s spring grows closer, and the days start warming up, we’re hitting that sweet spot in the year—crawfish season. It’s time for the tradition we all love—diving into piles of those spicy, delicious mudbugs. If you have lived in the south for any amount of time, chances are you have been exposed to the ritual of dining on boiled crawfish. This year, thanks to some wacky weather our crawfish buddies were playing hard to get. The reason we’re seeing fewer crawfish basically boils down to not enough rain and way too much heat. Fortunately, we hit the jackpot in the midst of a tough crawfish season when we stumbled upon local crawfish kingpins, Hot Tails. Hot Tail’s Crawfish has been selling crawfish in Texarkana for over 24 years. They got their start cooking these Louisiana crustaceans from a trailer set up on State Line near Walmart. Over time, they relocated to their current location on Highway 71 North. In 2023, new owners took the reins and have turned Hot Tail’s into a dining destination much different from their grab and go roots. Lana and John Robert Lee, along with Christina and Lance LeMay, have done a fantastic job with some changes and additions they have made to a local Texarkana staple. Andrew Having been to Hot Tails several times in years past, the first thing I noticed was the retrofit of an existing building on site. As I entered the big open doors, what looked like a freshly painted red barn turned into every sports fan’s dream. There were numerous fresh tabletops, an amazing bar top serving beer and wine, and big screen TVs everywhere! Ray and I even started a nice game of pool on a new table. But before we could finish the game, we were interrupted by one of the best-looking platters I have ever seen. Ray We had a platter full of crawfish, crab legs, shrimp, mushrooms, corn, potatoes, boudin, and Cajun sweet sausage, finished off with a couple of dipping sauces to try. We wanted to try a little bit of everything, and I’m glad we did.








Taste Buds, Ray Sandefur and Andrew McElhany enjoying a "Try it All Pack" at Hot Tails Crawfish.

I’m a big crawfish guy, and we normally boil 8-10 sacks a year with our neighbors and friends. It’s not hard to boil crawfish, but it is hard to do it well with consistent spice flavors. I like my crawfish spicy hot (sometimes I think I like them hotter than I really do). My wife likes them hot, but not too spicy. At times, my spice heat index can be a little off. Sometimes they are so spicy my hands swell up where I can’t get my wedding ring off until the next day. Other times, I over correct and they’re not quite spicy enough. Hot Tails crawfish hit the mark. They had enough of a heat kick to keep your attention and be enjoyable, but not get carried away by it. Besides being seasoned well, they were cooked just right; the tails pulled easily with a slight twist and the meat came right out of the tail. That’s a big deal for me. Crawfish can be a lot of work when the meat isn’t cooked correctly. If you have ever eaten crawfish, you know it makes a difference. I get into a little trance when it’s crawfish eating time, and I like to think I get into a rhythm of peeling, eating, peeling, and eating. It’s a kind of mindless therapy if you will. I enjoy crawfish tremendously but, because of the work it takes to peel them, some people might not think “the fruit is worth the squeeze.” I think it’s worth every last drop! Speaking of fruit, I need to let y’all know about a nice surprise I found in the Cajun sweet sausage. There were pieces of diced up pineapple inside that really hit a nice note. The sausage had great taste with some heat, but they were a nice change up from your typical hot sausages.

Andrew One of my favorite parts of the platter was the large gulf coast shrimp. I have eaten boiled shrimp in many places, and one thing that can turn a good shrimp boil into a bad experience is hard to peel shrimp. That was NOT the case at Hot Tail’s. Their shrimp came out perfectly and the shell was even split down the back for ease of peel. Once I figured out that was the case, I went to town eating it. Peel, dunk (in the cocktail sauce, of course), eat, and repeat. That was until I caught a little side eye from Ray indicating maybe I needed to try something else on the wonderful platter!



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