Christmas lightsPerhaps you saw Sports Information’s post that Lady Bison basketball is in a tie with Indiana-Pennsylvania, for 25th place in the USA Today Sports Division II Top 25 Coaches’ Poll.

You might have thought because Indiana and Pennsylvania are both states that Sports Information was confused. Actually, no, Indiana University of Pennsylvania is located in the town of Indiana in Indiana County, Pennsylvania.

It is my hometown, but its even greater claims to fame lie in two Christmas-related items. The “Christmas Tree Capital of the World” has 17 Christmas tree farms and also is the boyhood home of Jimmy Stewart, star of the Christmas classic “It’s a Wonderful Life.”

Christmas has a magical feel on the streets of that small western Pennsylvania town. It is something I miss but am so thankful for the beautifully lighted and decorated campus we have right here at Harding, which will put anyone in the Christmas spirit.

If you live nearby, come enjoy a walk on the quadrangle. Wherever you may be, have a blessed and wonderful Christmas season.

Tom Buterbaugh, editor/designer


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Thinking of what do to with friends or for a date in Searcy during the weekend can get frustrating. After a while it starts to feel like you’ve been to all the restaurants, and if there isn’t a good movie playing, it feels like your option is to seek an activity in another town or just stay in. But this is not the weekend to go out of town or stay in — here are just a few reasons why attending a Harding play makes the best date:

No car? No problem. I myself didn’t have a car for my freshman year, which can make it difficult to pick someone up for a date, but the Ulrey is conveniently in walking distance from campus for you and your date.

You “have” to go see it. You may know a friend who is in the cast or crew, and you are just trying to be a supportive friend. Maybe you’re getting extra credit for a theatre appreciation class — either way, ask your date to help you out with your play-attending obligations.

Intermission is your friend. I’ve heard several complaints from guy friends that though movies are stereotypically thought of as a good date idea, it’s difficult to talk to your date and actually use that time to get to know them. This is where the intermission can help you out — several minutes to discuss what’s been happening during the play and ask some typical get-to-know-you questions.

There’s still time for sonic.  As a student, I remember living the fear and the drama of rushing back to campus from a late movie to make it back in time for curfew. (As if I wasn’t going to see the Hunger Games opening night.) Going to a play is close enough to the dorms and ends early enough you don’t have to worry about getting back to campus late and even have time to stop for ice cream.

If the date goes poorly, at least you saw an awesome play. If we’re going to be honest here, some dates just are not as fun as you hoped they might be. So, in this case, since I have never seen a Harding play I didn’t like, you aren’t risking a weekend on a bad date, because you most likely just saw a great play.

So if you find yourself wondering where to take your date this weekend, or even a group of friends, go to a Harding play — a hilarious performance of Charley’s Aunt — showing tonight and tomorrow at 7 p.m in the Ulrey Performing Arts Center.


- Bethany Aspey, web content manager


Every year, students in the department of art and design’s printmaking class raise money for a local Searcy family or charity by selling hand-printed Christmas cards using relief and intaglio printing.


In relief printing, you start by drawing your image on a block of wood in reverse. The image will be reversed when printed. Once the image is drawn on the wood, the nonimage areas are cut away, leaving the image raised in relief. A brayer charged with ink is rolled over the surface of the wood and the ink is deposited on the high points – the image area. Paper is laid on the surface of the block, and pressure is applied, which transfers the ink from the block to the paper. Multiple colors are printed one color at a time onto the paper. The colors must be carefully registered so that the image prints in correct alignment.

Intaglio is the direct opposite of relief printing. Usually zinc and copper plates are used for the surface and the image area is etched or engraved. In printing, the ink is wiped on to the plate and then wiped away so the ink is deposited only in the lower areas. The paper has to be damp in order to mold around the plate and print the plate.


Stop by the Student Center Tuesday and Thursday of dead week to purchase your pack of hand-printed cards. Each pack is $10 and includes five original cards.

Jennifer Allen, graphic design intern

1939 Burning of the Morgage

The campus is empty this Thanksgiving Day as students have a full week off to celebrate the holiday.

Seventy-five years ago, the campus was active on Thanksgiving Day as Lectureship was held during that week. A feast was prepared on campus with barbecue pits full of beef and pork ready for faculty, students and guests to enjoy.

Thanksgiving Day 1939 was going to prove to be one for the history books as Dr. George S. Benson, president for just three years, had met his goal of setting the campus debt free, which he announced to a crowded auditorium.

Soon the crowd gathered around a large bonfire on the front lawn lit by Benson where J.N. Armstrong, Harding’s first president, threw the cancelled mortgage into the flames. The “Alma Mater” was joyfully sung, and, according to the 1940 Petit Jean, the Alumni Association presented a gift of $5,000 in insurance policies to Benson to begin an endowment.

The burning of the mortgage that Thanksgiving Day 75 years ago allowed Harding to go forward debt free and become the University we know and love today.

The staff of Harding magazine is thankful for these men and women who went before us paving the way for the blessings we enjoy today. We wish you a blessed Thanksgiving as we give thanks to God for his rich provisions.

Tom Buterbaugh, editor/designer

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Many people have said that you can find a Harding connection almost anywhere. For President Bruce McLarty, those bonds are common everywhere he goes.

“I love to wear Harding gear because I know that if I see somebody that has Harding gear on, I’ll walk up to them, and people will walk up to me like that,” McLarty said. “It has been in Europe or in South America that I connect with a Harding person. All you have in common is that you went to Harding, and yet there is a level of understanding that you begin with that’s huge.”

The moment that the impact of Harding as a connected family really clicked with him was when he and Ann were living in Cookeville, Tennessee. McLarty was in the library of the church where he preached looking for something when a man walked in who also had graduated from Harding.

“It was like we had grown up in the same family because we shared Harding in common,” he said. “We had a few overlapping friends, but that wasn’t the bond. The bond was that we were from Harding. I was stunned by the depth of the relationship with someone I did not even know at Harding. And yet, it was very much, ‘We are Harding family.’”

Hannah Beall Owens, director of news services


“Food is really a form of art,” said Liz Howell, assistant to the president for parent and alumni relations.

From participating in her Supper Club to planning and cooking for parties for others, Howell says that food is definitely something for which she is thankful. For the past 25 years, she has met regularly with a group of friends to cook and bond over their mutual love for food.

“It can be ultimate gourmet or completely casual — the food is always fabulous,” Howell said. “But it’s the relationships and friendships that occur over the food that are special.”

Howell says she loves to cook because it is relaxing. As the oldest of five children, she was often the one cooking dinner for the family. During Thanksgiving, Howell says the dressing is a big part of her family’s celebration, and her granny was the person who always made it. Over the years, the responsibility of cooking the dressing has been passed down to her mother and now to her, including her granny’s exact recipe and the only pan in which the dressing has ever been made.

“The real key to this recipe is the cornbread. We’re all kind of food critics of the dressing,” she said. “For us, it’s the ultimate comfort food, and it takes us back to our childhood.”

To make her granny’s famous dressing, Howell shares the recipe below:


(The secret ingredient)

  • 2 c. of cornmeal
  • 1 c. of all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. of salt
  • 1 tsp. of baking soda
  • 1 tsp. of baking powder
  • 2 c. or more of buttermilk
  • 1/4 c. of vegetable oil

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Pour vegetable oil in an iron skillet or 9 x13 baking dish and place in oven as you mix all the dry ingredients. Add buttermilk. If your batter is too thick, add more buttermilk. Pour batter into the hot vegetable oil and bake until golden brown. Allow cornbread to cool.


  • 3 stalks of celery (optional)
  • 1 large onion
  • 1/4 c. butter or oil
  • 1 chicken or 4 bone-in breasts
  • 4 or 5 qt. of water
  • 4 eggs
  • 3 -4 slices of bread
  • Sage, salt and pepper to taste

Chop celery and onion. Sauté in saucepan until soft. Cook one chicken in four or five quarts of water. Cover and cook until tender. Add salt to taste. Remove chicken, debone and chop into bite size pieces. Let broth cool. Crumble cornbread into large pan. Add eggs and work in three to four slices of bread to the mixture. Add sautéed onion and celery to cornbread. Add sage, salt and pepper to taste. Begin adding broth to cornbread and stir. You want the bread all covered and very moist. Add chicken. Keep adding broth until mixture is very soupy. Bake at 425 degrees until golden brown.


  • 1/4 c. of butter
  • 1/2 c. of flour
  • Chicken broth

Melt butter in a skillet. Gradually add flour. Don’t let it brown, then slowly add chicken broth until gravy thickens. Stir with a fork. You may add chicken or boiled eggs to the gravy. Serve over dressing.

Hannah Beall Owens, director of news services


Emily Sanders of Colorado Springs, Colorado, graduated from Harding in 2010 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in English. Throughout her undergraduate career, Sanders said she had a number of memorable experiences in the classroom and learning from University faculty.

Sanders took French for three years under Dr. Robert McCready, associate professor. Though the class was difficult at times, Sanders said McCready went out of his way to help his students understand the material.

“He was very engaging in class and always encouraged students to go beyond what they felt comfortable with in learning French — which you have to do to really master a new language,” she said. “I learned that hard is not always bad! I just always appreciated his teaching style and the fact that he seemed to care very much about his students and their success.”

Another class Sanders remembers is Associate Professor of English Larry Hunt’s history of language class, which Sanders admitted she initially had doubts about.

“I don’t really know how he did it, but Dr. Hunt made that class so entertaining, Sanders said. “He had the best laugh and would crack us up every time in class with funny stories or videos about the history of language. It turned out to be one of the most fascinating classes I took.”

In a Bible class with Dr. Scott Adair, associate professor, Sanders remembers many moments when he made her think about the Bible and her own faith from a new perspective. She said she’ll never forget the day he brought in a steel animal trap with cloth covering the teeth to illustrate faith in God.

“He told us it wouldn’t hurt if someone stuck his or her arm into the trap and it snapped; he had done it before,” she said. “Would we act on faith that what he said was true? There were no volunteers. He certainly made his point though.”

Looking back on her experience in school, Sanders says she is thankful for the teachers in her life and the influence they have had on her future.

“I’m very thankful to have had teachers who were not only gifted in their area of study but were also gifted in communicating to, connecting with, and inspiring their students,” she said. “You don’t always get both, so it’s special.”

Hannah Beall Owens, director of news services


May 2014 graduate Holly Bohnett (left) and theatre major Xavier Miller enjoy a cup of coffee in the student center.

May 2014 alumna Holly Bohnett (left) and  Xavier Miller enjoy a cup of coffee in the student center.

Xavier Miller didn’t know many people when he first came to Harding in 2011. He knew a few people from a church camp he attended, but it didn’t take him long when he got here to make friends.

“I am thankful for friends because they help me get through my toughest days,” Miller said. “They shine light and laughter on situations when things get a little too serious. No, my friends aren’t perfect, and I wouldn’t want them to be. We each provide wisdom to each other in a certain way. We learn from each other, most of all, and we love each other through and through.”

Miller says that he tries to live every day by the golden rule, “Treat others how you would want to be treated.” He cherishes the friendships he has, and he highly values the people in his life.

“These relationships are also important because Christ remains the center of our lives,” Miller said. “That’s why we have friends — to hold each other accountable and to keep our sights focused.”

Throughout his time at Harding, Miller has made many meaningful friendships, and he says that every friendship is unique. His advice to others is to consistently cherish friends and fully engage in the gift of those relationships.

“Encouraging words, tough love, and hearing the hard things should be something you strive for with your friends,” he said. “Be there when they cry, and be there when they’re happy. The prevalent presence of friendship should be something that guides you and nourishes you throughout your life.”

Hannah Beall Owens, director of news services



“Fall is definitely my favorite season,” said Ashel Parsons, international programs administrator. “There’s something about the cool weather, campfires, hot drinks and especially the colors that make this one of the best times of year.”

For many people, the changing colors of fall are what make this season the best. For Parsons, standing in the midst of fall colors allows her to be closer to God.

“The colors look so unreal at times, and I stand in awe of God’s glory,” she said. “For me, it’s God’s way of giving a spark of hope and joy before the cold almost colorless winter. I thank God for the pop of brightness in the midst of change.”


Parsons has been a photographer in Central Arkansas in a variety of capacities, including working for the University’s student publications, capturing images around the globe for the international programs office, and freelancing for local newspapers and various events in the area. But her favorite place to film is directly under the sky.

“I am a photographer, so I am constantly looking at what’s around me and trying to see it from new perspectives,” Parsons said. “Fall colors make my eyes go crazy, in the best way. The colors are so vibrant and full of beauty. Trees that have been lush and green for so long suddenly turn bright red, orange and yellow.”

Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset


“I am always trying to capture what is around me in a way that others will be able to share in the experience, so having the rich colors makes the ordinary look stunning,” Parsons said. “I am so thankful for the unique colors because it makes people stop and take in nature that they might have been passing by for so long. It’s a simple reminder of how uniquely beautiful things are around us.”

Hannah Beall Owens, director of news services
Photos by Ashel Parsons


IMG_0007This past week as I updated the operating system on my iPad, it locked up and I had to do a complete restore. The process was mostly painless as I had a fairly recent backup to use to reinstall my apps. The thing that was lost was my background and lock screen art. Yesterday, as I was out shooting images with my photography class, I ran across the perfect fall image for my iPad screens.


I also do my own desktop art for my computer too. These lovely pansies in the planters by the art building were my previous iPad background art.

Screen Shot 2014-11-11 at 2.15.22 PM

So. in an effort to rid the world of generic desktop art, I have decided to share a few of my iPad and computer desktop images.  I have put a small selection of fall images for you to use at the following link.


Jeff Montgomery/photographer

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