New shopping spots coming downtown

Good morning, everyone. Two thoughts are really brightening my day today. First of all, even though this has been a slow month for rumors, I have a lot to discuss today. Secondly, January is almost over, which means I can start counting weeks until spring soon.

Shop will cater to brides

Tammy Spand, a Conway High School alum who has returned home, is preparing to open Weddingpalooza and Events a 1030 Front St. The location is across from Salon 11. Spand is a certified wedding planner and will serve brides by appointment only with everything they need — gowns, shoes, veils, headpieces, jewelry, etc. She will also offer wedding planning packages and services and contract with a photographer for engagement and bridal shoots. She said a seamstress will be on site for alterations.

Spand said she became a certified wedding planner after her 15th wedding anniversary. She and her husband decided to renew their vows, and everyone loved the ceremony so much they told her she should become a wedding planner, she said.

A grand opening for the boutique will likely be in April, so if you know someone who is getting a diamond ring for Valentine’s Day, make sure they know they can shop downtown Conway for their wedding gown.

Get up, get out

Here’s an idea that’s just in time. Downtown Restaurant Month is happening now. Just when you most want to succumb to the dreariness of winter and just hibernate — here’s a reason to get out of the house. The various restaurants in downtown (all fantastic, by the way) will have different specials to encourage you to try new things over the next few weeks. Or, in other words, to coax you out of your den and back into civilization. Come on, you can do it.

Gift baskets galore

Margaret Stiger is opening Margaret’s Gift Baskets and More at 1127 Front St., next to the Stoby’s office. She hopes to open Feb. 1.

She will have baskets for any occasion and every price point, she said, and she will also make custom gift baskets. On hand she will have birthday, wedding, anniversary, baby shower, Razorback, Valentine, Avon and snack baskets, she said. Customers can tell her what they want and she will do the shopping, she added. In addition to making gift baskets, Stiger will sell health and beauty items and accessories.

(Rachel Parker Dickerson is a freelance columnist/journalist. Send your questions and comments to