Chamber celebrates 100th anniversary

Nikki Chandler and Austin Wingfield look at a framed copy of The Siftings Herald printed when the Arkadelphia Chamber of Commerce was formed in 1921.

By Joel Phelps
The Arkadelphian

In a 2 1/2 hour casual meet-and-greet, the Arkadelphia Area Chamber of Commerce on Thursday celebrated its 100th anniversary, with several community members and business representatives stopping by its office at 26th and Pine streets.

Those who stopped in placed either business cards or items carrying their logo into a time capsule that is to be buried later at an undisclosed location, to be unburied several years in the future (somewhere between 25-100 years, according to chamber officials).

Via photographs and text, those who attended had the opportunity to read through and admire a snippet of the chamber’s impact on Arkadelphia businesses throughout its 10 decades of service.

Nikki Chandler, executive vice president of the Arkadelphia Alliance and Chamber of Commerce, welcomed Joe May, publisher of The Southern Standard, to orate a history of Arkadelphia as recorded in various newspaper articles.

Items were placed into a time capsule representing Arkadelphia in 2021. The capsule will be buried so that, one day, a new generation will be able to see a glimpse of present-day Arkadelphia.

“We are so proud of our long history as a Chamber,” said Chandler. “We were able to celebrate during Chamber of Commerce Week with a group of great friends, good food and an awesome history lesson. We are thankful for our Chamber members every day but especially this day with so much to celebrate.”

Arkadelphia Alliance officials (from left) Nikki Chandler, Saybra Scott and Ashlee Vaughan chat with Clark County Judge Troy Tucker during Thursday’s event.