The Sentinel-Record - HER - Hot Springs - - News -

May days. Play days. What­ever you want to do care­free days. The mer­ri­est of months ar­rived in the re­sort city with a blus­ter but prom­ises balmier tem­per­a­tures ahead.

Many Hot Springs denizens have put away their prom wear and pre­pare to don robes and mor­tar boards for grad­u­a­tion ex­er­cises that close one chap­ter of life’s jour­ney and sig­nal new be­gin­nings.

Pre-nup­tial par­ties in var­i­ous venues around town are truly cel­e­bra­tory oc­ca­sions. Cou­ples ex­change “I do’s” in cer­e­mo­nial splen­dor or sim­plic­ity, af­ter which mothers, fa­thers and beam­ing “grands” host din­ners and re­cep­tions for guests who share th­ese happy mo­ments.

All signs point to sum­mer­time fun, to golf and ten­nis, to laz­ing on the lake. For per­sons who are in­nately cu­ri­ous and pas­sion­ately imag­i­na­tive, en­thralling ex­hibits or ac­tiv­i­ties await at Mid-Amer­ica Science Mu­seum. If rock and Bach sound in­trigu­ing, there’s the an­nual Hot Springs Mu­sic Fes­ti­val, which trum­pets its 2013 open­ing on June 2.

No mat­ter the sea­son, hos­pi­tal­ity is al­ways in vogue here in the Spa City and vis­i­tors never lack for some­thing to see, do and en­joy.

Per­son­ally speak­ing, May of­fers an abun­dance of spe­cial mem­o­ries that res­onate more strongly with ev­ery pass­ing year. My and Lynda Lind­sey Ho­ga­boom’s name­sake, Me­lynda Mul­doon Gid­comb, came into this world on a bright and cloud­less Mother’s Day, a gift to us from our other child­hood chum, Mol­lie Lol­lis Mul­doon.

That pre­co­cious and charm­ing lit­tle girl has grown into a gra­cious lady, loving wife, de­voted mom, and ded­i­cated teacher. Good na­tured and gen­er­ous like her par­ents, I mar­vel at Me­lynda’s verve and en­ergy, her eclec­tic in­ter­ests, her abil­ity to keep so many projects in play at the same time. She is a car­ing sib­ling to broth­ers, Scott and Matthew, and a dot­ing aunt to their chil­dren.

I’m par­tic­u­larly grate­ful for her thought­ful­ness to me as an adopted mem­ber of the fam­ily and the man­ner in which she and Jimmy have kept me close to their daugh­ter, 5-year-old Mol­lie Mar­garet.

Like me, Me­lynda is a Hot Springs na­tive and just as I do, she val­ues our home­town’s col­or­ful lore and di­ver­sity. She has heard me say many times over how her mother and I of­ten en­coun­tered a tall, lean man who’d tip his small white cap to us dur­ing af­ter-school bi­cy­cle rides on Wood­bine Av­enue. Now and then he would buy us ice cream cones at a nearby drug store. This cour­te­ous fel­low turned out to be “re­tired” gang­ster Owney Mad­den (See Ask Liz on Page 30).

While our land­scape is ever chang­ing, my name­sake and I are inex­orably con­nected to this place that has brought us both im­mea­sur­able pride and pur­pose.

Melinda B. Gas­s­away Ex­ec­u­tive edi­tor

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