Tim was a 30 year veteran ironworker who retired in 2010 from St. Louis Local 396. He was born
at a Virginia military base and grew up primarily in Hazelwood, Missouri. Tim was a very easy
going, all-around good guy. He was a lifelong outdoorsman with particular interests in deer and
turkey hunting, target shooting and driving his Polaris Ranger in the woods. Cindy has deep seated
roots in Florissant, Missouri, where she was born and raised. She was a legal secretary or paralegal
for 27 years, focusing most of that time on patent and trademark law. She officially retired this
month - January 2014. Cindy shared Tim's passion for target practice and she enjoys quiet time in
Tim and Cindy were friends, and sometimes more, since our late teens and finally joined as a
couple in 1993. True soul mates, we were married in a private beach ceremony on Grand Cayman
Island in 1997. Our only child, Emileigh, is 26 and tied the knot with her soul mate, Brian, in
October 2013. Em completed her higher education at MSU, landed a great job in St. Louis and will
soon begin pursuing her masters degree. She and Brian made us proud grandparents in 2011, when
their first child, Kaeden, was born. At ArdPark on July 5, 2011, a homeless Rat Terrier that we had
seen off and on for a few weeks, finally decided to pop a squat and adopt us. We named him
Shadow and he is the coolest little guy ever. Since laying to rest our third red Doberman, Butch, on
Tim's birthday in 2011, Tim had an itch to own another Dobie. In August 2012, we adopted and
welcomed home Max, an 8-month old, black Doberman who is quite the character. We also live
with Mea and Foxy, our cats, who, as kittens, were dumped many years ago at the All American
and managed to find their way to our cabin and into our hearts.
Tim and Cindy have rural Missouri upbringings so love for the outdoors has been in our blood all
of our lives. Tim's grandparents lived on a farm in Salem, Missouri where he spent time helping
grandpa castrate pigs, feed horses and maintain the garden. When the work was done, Tim
explored caves and the woods with cousins and friends. Cindy's grandparents had a weekend cabin
near Montauk State Park where many fond memories were made doing stuff like fishing, watching
grandpa clean squirrels and fish, and taking trailer rides with the big tractor. Cindy also spent lots
of fun days milking cows, chasing barn cats and wringing chicken necks at her great aunt's dairy
farm in Rolla. From all those wonderful experiences, Tim and Cindy most enjoyed the simple
things in life like picking blackberries, cutting firewood and taking walks on quiet trails. We are
casual people with small needs.
Even before our lives came together, camping was our favorite and frequent recreation. Tim and I
tent camped nearly every weekend and Steelville was our top destination. In our early 30s we gave
up the ground for a small pop-up camper. That was great and many good times were had, but our
dream was to have some land of our own. By age 35 or so, we began our search for the perfect slice
of Missouri property. We patiently looked for many months and, like a gift from God, the most
pristine 41 acres was eventually found.
The folks who sold the 41 acres to us passed along the original deed signed by President Buchanon,
which documents the property as being part of the Spanish Land Grant. People claim to have
found civil war uniform buttons and other small remnants in the nearby creek beds. This 41 acres
is bordered on 3 sides by Mark Twain National Forest and came with a one room cabin that
immediately became our second home. We lived in that cabin more often than not and commuted
between it and our Florissant home.
We were fortunate and blessed over the years to acquire property across the road and additional
parcels that join our first 41 acres and fit together like a game of monopoly. All of the additional
acreage, which is also bordered by Mark Twain National Forest, is what we opened to share with
you. The cabins and campground at ArdPark were renovated with help from a few close friends.
Without their hard work and love, ArdPark could not have happened. It was a rewarding adventure
putting ArdPark together back in 2007.
Some of our guests have asked what made us decide to open our business. The simple answer is
we've been blessed with so much and feel that it should be shared with others. No matter how
many years passed, Tim and I never wanted to head back to Florissant when the time came. There
is no doubt you will love and treasure ArdPark as much as we do and you will quickly know why
we call it "The Place You'll Never Want to Leave."
In the fall of 2011, Tim was unexpectedly diagnosed with inoperable stage 3B lung
cancer. The cancer eventually metastacized to his liver and Tim left this life on
October 14, 2013. Tim's final days were beyond incredible and he died quite peacefully
in my and Emileigh's arms. Needless to say, the last 2 plus years were extremely
difficult for us.
I am currently contemplating running ArdPark only a limited basis for the 2014
season. Many things must be explored and considered before I can decide whether or
not the cabins or campground will operate. The Courtois Cabana campground may be
available for rent, but with some minor differences. Some changes to ArdPark's
policies may also be necessary. Both cabins are for sale. Whether or not they will
operate during the 2014 season depends on if and when they are sold, and some other
Email is now our only form of communication. Our toll free phone number has been
disconnected to minimize costs. Also in the interest of cutting expenses, free
brochures are no longer available.
I EXPECT TO BE UNABLE TO ACCEPT OR CONFIRM RESERVATION REQUESTS
UNTIL ABOUT LATE APRIL. I AM ALSO CONSIDERING LIMITING CABIN STAYS TO
ONLY PRIOR GUESTS.
If ArdPark does continue, it will always remain private and non-commercial -- for you and for us.
You won't see ArdPark billboards and you won't hear about us on the radio. We absolutely want
your experience here to always be personal and untouched. Our goal has always been to give our
guests the opportunity to spend time in the country with privacy, freedom and the conveniences of
home at a fair price.
I sincerely hope that you and yours are doing well and that I can soon provide you
with solid decisions about ArdPark's fate.
Copyright 2008-2014. ArdPark Cabins, LLC. All rights reserved.