Plan to attend Barry County Pioneer Days

Thursday, April 8, 2010

On April 17, Barry County's New Harmonies Committee will host Barry County Pioneer Days at the Crowder College Cassville Campus auditorium. The event, which will be held from 5 to 8 p.m., will offer a performance by the Possum Holler Fiddlers, a talented group of young fiddlers from southwest Missouri and northwest Arkansas who receive training through the Ozark Heritage Camp in Branson. Some of the performers are from Purdy and Monett. The free evening of entertainment will serve as a fundraiser for six weeks of entertainment scheduled to be offered at the Barry County Museum this summer.

The local museum is partnering with the Missouri Humanities Council to host a six-week showing of the Smithsonian Institution's Museum on Main Street exhibit, "New Harmonies: Celebrating American Roots Music" from June 19 through July 31. The display will be complemented by a variety of musical performances and an assortment of interactive programs scheduled to be held at the museum this summer.

Several performers have already volunteered to share their talents during the New Harmonies event. Some of those performers include: Eddie Bowman; Robin Brumley; Al Brumley, Jr.; Cassville High School choir students; Hometown Sound; Cherokee National Youth Choir; Kevin Cantwell and Family; Tradewinds; Bernard and Linda Bass; Crazy Mule; Missouri Boatride; Southern Raised; Wayne Hendrix; Denny Wolf and Family; His Harmony; Flonnie Henry; The Tripps; Carolyn Biggs; and the Mills Family. Additional performers will be added over the next few months.

Music has been a big part of many lives in Barry County. Years ago, social events centered around music parties. Musical entertainment continues to be a major part of most events planned in our community today. The New Harmonies exhibit is designed to give communities, like Barry County, an opportunity to showcase their own music heritage through performances, storytelling and extended exhibits, such as a video program that will showcase the McDowell Golden Jubilee held east of Purdy each year. Pioneer Days will help the New Harmonies Committee promote both the Smithsonian exhibit and the performances and programs that will complement the display.

Community members who attend Pioneer Days will not only have a good time, but they will be doing their part to help support the New Harmonies event this summer. Come and enjoy some free chili, bid on a silent auction item or a pie or just enjoy some good music. Donations will be accepted throughout the event. Any and all donations, no matter how small, will be greatly appreciated.

This is our time to show off our musical heritage. Whether you grew up attending weekly music parties, have always been a member of your church choir or just enjoy singing along to the radio in your car, you are a part of our community's musical heritage. Let's join together to raise funds for an event that will allow us to show off the musical roots of our county.

Lindsay Reed