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At Three Chicks Feed, Seed & Cafe, the first thing a visitor might notice is an oversized statue of three yellow chickens wearing hats: one red, one blue and one black. With guests from nearly all 50 states and cities as far away as London, the cafe in Texarkana has become a hotspot in southern Arkansas.
Since Three Chicks is part farm store, part cafe and part general store, there really is something for everyone. People come from all over for horse tack, lawn and garden supplies, a selection of locally made items and home-cooked food. They’ve won numerous regional awards for best feed store, best garden store and best breakfast, and their Facebook page has over 17,000 followers.
Miranda Morris-Bisbee, who handles customer service relations for Three Chicks, says the key is taking care of their customers the old-fashioned way.
“The popularity of Three Chicks is solely based on customer service. We believe customer service is a dying art, and when people come here, we want them to feel as though they have stepped back in time to an old general store,” Morris-Bisbee said.
The official Three Chicks family is made up of owners and longtime friends: Angie Watson, Dee Dee Rogers and Julie Watson, who started the business together in 2011. They consider visitors part of the family too.
“We want them to feel like they are home and part of the family. Because honestly that is what we are….family. Whether you work here or are a part of the community or just passing through, we are one big family.”
Now that the days are a little longer and the weather is a little nicer, spring is an especially busy time for Three Chicks. It’s also a great time of year to visit and see all that Three Chicks has to offer.
“Spring around here is so much fun,” Morris-Bisbee said. “The flowers start to bloom, we have a large amount of colorful pottery and metal yard art, and baby chicks arrive.” Some of the other new arrivals include lots of ferns in all shapes and sizes, hanging baskets, yard decor including bright, oversized dragonflies and butterflies, colorful perennials and annuals, local veggie plants, herbs and planters and bird feeders.
The backyard of Three Chicks is “the spot” this time of year. That’s where visitors can find tables and benches for dining or relaxing.
“It’s finally pretty enough for people to start walking around out back and looking around at the animals (baby chicks and goats) or sitting outside and enjoying the weather. We get a lot of visitors around this time, so it makes it even more awesome because we get to see new faces and meet people from all over.”
The backyard offers lots of colorful places to take photos, such as a bench made from the tailgate of an old Ford truck and a bright red door.
The outdoor space came out of the need to accommodate visitors who bring their pets with them to Three Chicks. Back when they opened, they served food from a concession stand, but as their popularity and community support grew, so did their dining area.
Morris-Bisbee describes the main seating area that used to be outside. They used plastic sheeting to block the wind, water coolers during the summer and wood-burning stoves during the winter. Now, their main dining area is enclosed with central heat and hair.
“But we still needed a place where people could eat and bring their pets with them,” she said. “We have a lot of people who travel with their dogs. We have a covered outside dining area and picnic tables with big umbrellas so people can enjoy all we have to offer in the back of our property.”
Visitors can grab lunch from the cafe and enjoy dining alfresco.
Spring dining specials, offering customers a light and healthy option, include a salad of the week choice such as their Barnyard Salad (mixed greens, diced ham, boiled egg, cherry tomatoes, sliced cucumbers, fire and ice cucumbers and croutons) and California Fields Salad (mixed greens, mandarin oranges, sliced red onion, candied pecans, cranberries, shredded mozzarella, and bacon served with poppyseed dressing).
There are also daily lunch specials such as homemade meatloaf, chicken fried chicken, smothered pork chops or chicken and waffles. These dishes come served with homemade sides, including mashed potatoes and gravy, coleslaw and homemade chips and salsa.
Desserts at Three Chicks are always homemade as well.
“We are constantly coming up with new desserts. We recently did a twist on regular bread pudding. By adding cinnamon, sugar and pecans, we made an amazing treat that melts in your mouth.”
Diners who choose to eat inside are surrounded by wooden floors and walls, colorful tablecloths, and mix-and-match decor that all add to the homey, family environment. Large windows in the dining room allow indoor customers to take advantage of the colorful backyard.
Visitors to Three Chicks should plan to make a weekday visit to enjoy the cafe during open hours and block off a couple of hours minimum to spend. That allows time to enjoy a meal and browse all of the garden offerings outside as well as the selection of local merchandise, honey, canned goods, old-time candies and unique gifts and hardware inside the store.
Store hours are 8 a.m. – 5:30 p.m. Monday through Friday, and 8 a.m. – 2 p.m. on Saturdays. Cafe hours are Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. – 2 p.m. Three Chicks offers plenty of parking, and it’s a kid-friendly outing. If you’d like to take a group for lunch, call ahead to reserve seating.
Authors note: Our family visit to Three Chicks was a big hit with my 5-year-old! She loved looking at each one of the metal yard decor items, petting the resident cats, riding the Radio Flyer rocking horse toy, smelling soaps, playing with other kids in the backyard, and peeking at chickens and goats. Lots to look at and touch and room to run around. Bonus: all of these activities are free.
Three Chicks Feed, Seed and Cafe
4045 Genoa Road
Texarkana, AR 71854
All photos courtesy of writer and those wonderful Three Chicks.
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