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Central Heber Springs
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Central Food 2

Peggy Sue’s Place in Heber Springs

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Attention comfort food lovers: If you are a fan of delicious southern home cooking, coziness, and an abundance of character, then head to Peggy Sue’s in Heber Springs. Hungry folks searching for that “I’m gonna need a nap” breakfast or lunch will instantly feel like they have just stepped into someone’s warm and welcoming home. Just sit down at the table and let Ms. Peggy and staff take care of you like family.

On my recent visit, I was greeted with a big smile and a welcoming hug from Mrs. Peggy Sue Baad, known lovingly by her customers as “Ms. Peggy.”  She and her husband own and operate the restaurant, a favorite among locals and tourists alike.

Loaded Hashbrowns with Eggs, Biscuits and Gravy

Bacon Cheeseburger with Fries and All the Trimmings

The Food

My family has a vacation home on the Little Red River, and Peggy Sue’s Place is our Sunday morning tradition. We all have our breakfast favorites: the skillet, the loaded hashbrowns and ­– oh my goodness – the pancakes. No matter what we may order, my husband and I usually can’t resist an add-on of the blueberry pancakes and end up splitting at least one or two.  Sprinkled with powdered sugar, I can honestly say these are the best pancakes I have ever had. And I know my pancakes.

Not only does Peggy Sue’s Place serve a killer breakfast, but they also prepare crowd-pleasing lunches, with some of the favorites being burgers, sandwiches and a monster foot-long hot dog covered with all the fixings. The daily special plate lunches are local favorites as well: the scratch-made chicken and dressing and meatloaf always sell out.

Roosters and Chickens Adorn the Walls of Peggy Sue’s Place

The Roosters and Chickens

The food is not the only thing that makes Peggy Sue’s Place a must-stop while on any trip to Heber Springs. The atmosphere is equally as warm and satisfying. The first aesthetic patrons will notice when they arrive is a gaggle of roosters and chickens greeting you outside the restaurant. No, they aren’t real. They are only decorative but embellish every nook and cranny of the restaurant, both inside and out.  I asked Ms. Peggy about the abundance those roosters and chickens. I told her that my family and I had tried multiple times to count them all, but we never could agree on how many. Ms. Peggy told me that her last count was around two hundred, but much like my family, she eventually gave up, too.

About one month before she opened the restaurant, her mother passed away. She was an avid collector of roosters and chickens, so Ms. Peggy made sure that her first decorative touches paid homage to her mother. She first brought over 10 of her mother’s yellow-painted roosters, then a couple of wall hangings, and the rest (as they say) is history. Most of the roosters inside and outside the restaurant were brought to her by customers. She lovingly accepts each one with pleasure.

A Busy Morning at Peggy Sue’s Place

The People

I told Ms. Peggy that I had often noticed many of the same friendly faces waiting tables over the years. The restaurant has been open for eight years, and since the beginning, her friend and right hand, Tami, has been an integral part of the business. A few years later, they were joined by Alissa. For years, Tami and Ms. Peggy worked together at the Smokehouse, a longtime Heber Springs restaurant where Ms. Peggy was the manager for 20 years. She started working there when she was 24 years old, and at the time, she said there was not much help…only one cook and one waitress, which meant she had to learn quickly how to make a restaurant function effectively.

Peggy learned a great deal about home cooking from her mother, her basis for preparing comfort food, but while at the Smokehouse, her cooking continually improved as she refined certain combinations and strategies. Meanwhile, she discovered that her relationships with customers were almost as important as the food.

As a native of Heber Springs, she smiled warmly when I asked her what her favorite part of owning a business was.  Her response: “The people, the customers and the hugs.” And I know she gets lots of those hugs.  She said she has at least 50 regulars, some who may come multiple times throughout the week and about eight who usually come every day. She’s got the coffee-drinking regulars, too, of course.  All of these folks Ms. Peggy knows on a first-name basis.

The Mission

I think it’s time for Peggy Sue’s Place to be named one the best locally owned breakfast spots in Arkansas. All it will take is one trip to Heber Springs to see Ms. Peggy and you will see why.

Open seven days a week from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m., Peggy Sue’s Place is located at 1901 W. Quitman St. in Heber Springs.

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Mary (Duran) Eggart lives in Morrilton with her husband, Bill, and son, Tripp. Her daughter, Emma, is a sophomore at the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville. Mary is currently a part-time high school English teacher with over 18 years of teaching experience, having taught elementary, middle school, high school, and college students throughout her career. She has a bachelor’s degree in education, a master’s degree in teaching, and a master’s degree in English. Mary is a native Razorback and graduate of the U of A who enjoys exploring her state and dreams of traveling the world. The arts and travel are her passions as she is an avid lover of people, their culture, and the stories that build and shape a community.

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2 responses to “Peggy Sue’s Place in Heber Springs”

  1. Linda & Anthony Terranova says:

    It’s fabulous like eating at Mommas house ❤️‼️

  2. Edwin Gray Romance ,AR says:

    Having just discovered Peggy Sues in Heber Springs I can attest that the food is absolutely delicious! The people are amazing and the ambiance is unique. Places like this are one of the reasons Arkansas is seeing such an influx of people relocating here. Proud to be an Arkansan! Great Job Ms Peggy.

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