THE FULL-TIME VOLUNTEER
Those who do the most good often care the least about recognition. John Payne is no exception. Those are the people who deserve recognition the most.
John may be the busiest volunteer in Clarksville, and the most impactful. Most who know John know him for his success in leading the Clarksville Turf Club and raising enough funds to overhaul Whitson Morgan Stadium and provide artificial turf for the football field. Then John led Parents for Panthers, an organization of volunteers who were instrumental in passing the school millage in September 2016 in order to receive funding to build a new high school for the Clarksville School District.
He hasn’t stopped yet. John currently serves on a variety of different boards, and provides countless volunteer hours for the school and community. He is the President and founder of the Panther Foundation, a member of the Franklin Masonic Lodge #9, and he serves on the Board of Directors of the Clarksville Regional Economic Development Organization, the Clarksville Lions Club, The Johnson County Quorum Court, and he supports and serves in various capacities in many church organizations, including the Gideons International and First United Methodist Church.
And yet, John still finds the time to drive a bus for the Clarksville School District. It is in this scenario that his true colors really shine. A few months ago, a first grader on John’s bus was eager to show his fellow classmates his recently dislodged tooth. Unfortunately, the tooth was dropped, and the child was inconsolable. John dropped the child off at his destination, the Ozark Valley Day School, then finished the rest of his route. A short time later, he returned to the Day School, after searching the bus top to bottom, and presented the child with his dearly departed tooth. Needless to say, the first grader was over the moon.
While some are apathetic to the state of their community, and many are unmotivated to help it progress, and most lack the energy and drive to be a force of positive change, Clarksville is lucky to have the likes of John Payne, working constantly to save the day, even when it seems like no one is watching.
LET’S DO LUNCH
One of Clarksville’s newest lunch stops offers more than just a delicious meal at a great price.The Falcon’s Nest is the newest division of the Forrester-Davis Development Center, which is dedicated to providing intellectually disabled members of the community with the opportunity to learn workforce skills, then put them to use.
Forrester-Davis was started in 1971, followed by M.A.C. Industries (Making Abilities Count) in 1999, which provides subcontract work with community businesses, and focuses on assembly, packaging, and industrial work. M.A.C. Industries also offers laundry services, screen printing, embroidery, and engraving.
As of January 2017, the Forrester-Davis workforce has expanded to include a quaint restaurant focusing on lunch specials, offering workers an opportunity to build interpersonal skills, and offering customers the opportunity to support a great cause, while enjoying a delicious lunch.
NEW TRAIL PROVIDES PLEASANT STROLL
The continually growing system of biking and walking trails across Clarksville has a new addition.
Thanks to Steven Wyatt, Tom Cogan, and a number of other volunteers, Clarksvillagers are now able to walk from Crawford Street, arriving 1.25 miles later at the older set of trails near the Iron Bridge on the east side of town.
HEALTH, GUIDANCE, AND MOTIVATION
After twenty years in business, a local fitness center has adopted a name change, and has adapted its business model to fit the growing needs of the community.
24 Hour Family Fitness is offering more than just weights and treadmills—Bill King, Harley Mork, and their team have made sweeping changes to their business model, instituting support services for gym members, incorporating a variety of new programs, including a coaching team dedicated to assisting with accountability, education, and most importantly, motivation.
Even the building itself has received a facelift. The fitness center is sporting new floors and lighting, as well as new equipment, all without increasing the cost of memberships. In fact, the cost has decreased by half to make sure the community has access to a healthier lifestyle at an affordable rate.
“Our goal is to make Clarksville a healthier, happier home for our neighbors, our friends, and most of all, our families.”
THE RESOURCES YOU NEED FOR THE BUSINESS YOU WANT
The Chamber is the business resource center for Johnson County. If you own a downtown property or business, the following services provided by Main Street Arkansas, at no cost, are available to you.
• Exterior design consulting to improve physical assets
• Interior design for functionality of the space, color, build out, and displays.
• Workshops available on retail strategies, window displays that sell, effective signage, branding, and a pool of other topics.
Contact the chamber to connect with resources that will help you grow your business to its full potential.