It’s easy to describe because we’ve talked about our happiness in Belle Grove for 19 years now. We love downtown, but not in the traffic (busy Garrison is three blocks away). We have huge, mature trees and wide sidewalks, courtesy of ‘urban planning’ in the early 19th century.
It’s quiet. Birds sing. We have a front porch lifestyle (when loafing). Neighbors include workers from Weldon, Williams & Lick who take daily powerwalks on breaks and residents who stop and chat over the fence. Our good landlord is the Bonneville House Association. We watch a lot of weddings, without wearing heels! We learn about restoration and repair from watching what goes on around us.
And we notice how many people like visiting a historic district, people from here and from out of town. We wave at tour buses, hand out maps and brochures - and our magazines.
I find that people who visit historic sites and who appreciate and restore old properties to have intelligent, creative. authentic personalities.
Preservationists save worthy things and make them useful and pretty again. All neighbors on this very old street applaud others who bring properties back to their former glory. We have real life here - we don’t need HGTV!
We usually have a great vantage point from which to watch the Unexpected artwork reveal itself. We can walk to a bookstore, a courthouse, city offices, fantastic eateries, a river trail, a national park. Know we we don’t have nearby? Fast food and big box stores - who needs them?
Best of all, we have a caring community and even though we only do business here on 7th Street, it’s still like being home.
We invite you, readers, to nominate your neighborhoods for future stories in eFort Smith. Some of you decorate for holidays together. Somewhere, a kind early bird is moving a neighbor’s newspaper on to their porch or pulling in their trash can.
Tell us about your own community.
– Lynn Wasson, Editor