On an unseasonably warm day in early fall, the seniors from First Baptist Church ventured over to Sheridan, a southern town named after a Union general — Gen. Phillip Sheridan.
Sheridan is located in Grant County, which was named after the newly elected president and former Union general, Ulysses S. Grant, to placate the Reconstruction government in Arkansas at the time.
The final battle of the Civil War in Arkansas took place 10 miles from Sheridan at Jenkins Ferry on the Saline River. The defeat of the southerners at the Battle of Jenkins Ferry allowed the federal troops to escape and regroup at Little Rock.
At the time of the Senior Adult Ministry’s visit, Sheridan residents were getting ready for Timberfest. This festival was started to honor the timber industry which has long played an important role in Sheridan’s economy.
The first stop upon arriving in town was the Cottage Restaurant, owned by Connie Morgan. Morgan is the sister of Theresa Orso, a Pine Bluff resident. Orso decorated the restaurant for her sister using bright colors, antique furniture and old objects, giving the restaurant a distinctive atmosphere. The food is southern American. Each day a special soup is featured (chicken and wild rice, vegetable beef and cornbread, broccoli and cheese, potato, ham and corn, etc.). There are also a wide variety of salads and sandwiches.
On the day of the visit, chicken salad on a croissant and Reuben were favorites. The restaurant also offers a variety of desserts — Hershey Bar cake, red velvet cake, Italian creme cake, German chocolate cake, sour creme pound cake, coconut and chocolate pies, and a variety of cookies (chocolate chip, peanut butter, no bake oatmeal, etc.). The Hershey Bar cake was a standout, although all of the desserts were exceptional.
Downtown Sheridan is centered around the courthouse square. There are several antique and gift shops on West Center Street (U.S. 270). Resurrections Antique Mall, with the motto, “Giving New Life to Things Past,” features many themed booths — Pop’s Records, Grandpa’s Tool Shed, Country Cousins, etc.
Scooter’s advertises itself as the ‘best country store in town.’ The store contains a little bit of everything country. In additon, the owner creates people out of gourds. Jeanette McGrew bought one of her witches. There is also a Christmas shop — several rooms with Christmas decorations and all things Chrisanas.
Those making the trip included Roger and Linda Minyard, Jeanette McGrew, the organizer of the group, Ann Adair, Audrey Borecky, Betty Craig, Sara Cromer, Ruth Henry, Peggie Howard, Catherine Long, Jimmie Lee Nichols, Wanda Scruggs and Myra Twitchill. McGrew’s friend and a resident of Sheridan, Janice Erwin, met the group for lunch.