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April 2018

snail mail personal ministry Keltic Knot performs in Monett

Spring Shell

Get ready for

at the

A Magazine Dedicated to Southwest Missourians

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2 | April 2018


2310 W Kearney, Springfield


2309 Fairlawn Dr., Carthage A magazine dedicated to Southwest Missourians

general manager Lisa Craft EDITOR Kyle Troutman ADVERTISING REPRESENTATIVES Sheila Harris James Craig Marion Chrysler CONTRIBUTORS Murray Bishoff Meagan Ruffing Lisa Ramirez Darlene Wierman Melonie Roberts Sheila Harris Susan Funkhouser Pam Wormington Jared Lankford Julia Kilmer Dionne Zebert Jane Severson Verna Fry Angie Judd Cheryl Williams Sierra Gunter PHOTOGRAPHERS Chuck Nickle Brad Stillwell Jamie Brownlee Amy Sampson

Jeramie Grosenbacher, CFP®

Shane A Boyd

Financial Advisor

Financial Advisor 103 East Olive, Aurora, MO 65605 417-678-0277 • 1-866-678-0277

802 West Street, Cassville, MO 65625 417-847-5238

DISTRIBUTION Greg Gilliam Kevin Funcannon

Nathan Roetto AAMS®

Jim Haston

TO ADVERTISE 417-847-2610 - Cassville 417-235-3135 - Monett Send email inquiries to Mailing address: P.O. Box 40, Monett, MO 65708

Financial Advisor

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Nicole Weber Financial Advisor

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100 Chapel Drive, Suite B Monett, MO 65708 417-236-2819

603 Dairy St., Monett, MO 65708 417-235-7465

Connection is published monthly and distributed free in Cassville, Monett, Exeter, Washburn, Pierce City, Mt. Vernon, Aurora, Verona, Roaring River, Eagle Rock, Shell Knob, Purdy, Wheaton, Freistatt, Marionville, Seligman, Golden and other surrounding areas. Connection is a publication of the Cassville Democrat, The Monett Times and Rust Communications.

Scott Young Financial Advisor

1418 S. Elliott, Aurora, MO 65605 417-678-2102


Member SIPC

Connection Magazine | 3

You, your family & friends are invited to the yearly

Monett on the Move Community Walks Last 2 Saturdays from April through October

Where: the Monett Area Farmer’s Market at the new Jerry D. Hall Memorial Pavilion in Downtown Monett

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A p r i l 2018


April 2018

snail mail personal ministry Keltic Knot performs in Monett

Spring Shell

Get ready for

at the

On the cover: An antiquated press sits in the corner of Ma’s Cafe and Pizzeria in Miller, formerly home to The Miller Press.

Cover photo by Melonie Roberts


19 | ‘Don’t spit on the sidewalk’

47 | Ancestry answers

23 | Keltic Knot

53 | Author pens inspiration

Welcome to Monett in the early 1900s, when public service announcement was not just a suggestion Ozark Irish folk band to stop in Monett, April 20

28 | Historic marker Former Miller Press office home to Ma’s Café and Pizzeria

46 | Take courage

Judy Hoover digs into family archives to uncover rich history

Rachel Moore collects moral and spiritual lessons from life’s trials

60 | Snail Mail ministry

Leah Moss inscribes paper cards with meaningful connection

80-year-old Ozark story retold as reminder Connection Magazine | 5


S pecial Sections 8 Shell Knob expose 55 Lawn & Garden

Contents 36 Healthy Connection: Fermenting favorite 38 Proud Parent contest

40 Parenting Column: Easter egg options 43 Recipes: Spring fun 45 Cutest Pet contest

51 Community Calendar 64 Familiar Faces 66 Parting Shot

Have an idea for a story you would like to see in Connection Magazine? Email it to


6 | April 2018

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Connection Magazine | 7

Shell Knob: A place to stay Recognitions, slow-life nature keep people on the lake

Raegan Caddell, 8, of Monett, bounced on the bungee trampolines at Shakin’ in the Shell at Chamber Park in Shell Knob.

A new and unique visitor to Shakin’ in the Shell was Kiwi, The Skateboarding Parrot. Surrounded by a crowd of children chanting her name, Kiwi wowed the crowd by busting a spin move after going down her ramp.

8 | April 2018


VISIT BEAUTIFUL SHELL KNOB! Home & Business Show April 13th & 14th

Multi Species Fishing Tournament May 19th

Poker Run June 16th

Thunder & Fire Fireworks Display July 4th

Shakin in the Shell Fest Sept. 14th & 15th

Custom & Classic Car Show Sept. 15th

Homer Sloan Buddy Bass Fishing Tournament Oct. 7th

Christmas Tour of Homes Dec. 1st

Shell Knob Chamber of Commerce 417.858.3300


t’s safe to say those who visit Shell Knob always want to come back. Tucked away in southeast Barry County and surrounding Table Rock Lake, Shell Knob was recently named the “Best Place to Escape” in Missouri by the Expedia travel company, and Shell Knob Chamber of Commerce Director Twilia Harrison knows why. “I think it’s because of all the things we have to do here,” she said. “We are becoming more noticed, and although sometimes we feel like we are tucked away, we are not in the shadows anymore. The ones who come here always come back.” Harrison is a product of her own opinion, having moved to Shell Knob from Chicago, she said the difference between the big city and the slow, relaxed lifestyle of Shell Knob was immediately noticeable.

Story by Kyle Troutman Connection Magazine | 9

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Caleb Alexander, an illusionist who opens for Branson entertainer Reza, performed at the Shell Knob Chamber Banquet, turning water from the bowl at rear into sand he put in the glass.

“Even when I first got here, still with Illinois plates on my car, we’d be driving down the road and everyone would wave at us,” she said. “We wondered what was going on and if we were in a parade we didn’t know about, but that’s just Shell Knob. It’s a great community, and that’s why people who come here when they were children are coming back 20 years later with their families. They like the friendliness and how everyone knows everyone. It’s not like the big city where people walk down the street with their eyes down. Everyone here walks with their heads up, making eye contact, smiling and saying ‘hi,’ even when they don’t know you.” The Expedia Viewfinder blog features travel inspiration on destinations in the U.S. and across the globe. Expedia’s staff writers sought out locations that provide the best opportunity to relax, recharge and enjoy a real getaway.

Ziggy-Artist of Oddities scarfs down a balloon while Susan Youngblood led the crowd clapping to the music during the act.

Attendees at the Shell Knob Chamber Banquet enjoyed a meal. The theme for the event was “What’s the Buzz” and featured bee-themed centerpieces and table sets.

Connection Magazine | 11

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The website article includes a photograph of Table Rock Lake and one of the campgrounds. The blog also mentions that Table Rock is one of the best fishing spots in the country. Shell Knob is praised for its slower pace and relaxing atmosphere and promotes hiking and its resort amenities. Stonewater Cove, Pilot Knob Conservation Area and The Red Barn are specifically mentioned in the online article. “Table Rock Lake is the perfect spot for taking in nature’s quieter beauties, and Shell Knob is just the right place to settle in and take life easy,” said Lily Rogers, author of the article. “Calm nights in a cozy cabin, lazy days on the lake, and spending time meeting friendly locals sounds like the right prescription for an ideal escape.” Harrison said Shell Knob is honored to have been chosen for this recognition from knowledgeable travel experts. “Those who live in or visit Shell Knob already know that this is a special place with a relaxing, inspiring lifestyle,” she said. “It is nice to know that the beauty and amity of our area is noticed by others.” The blog says life does not move fast in Shell Knob. “And, that is just what the doctor ordered,” she says. “This is a place that encourages visitors to relax, slow down, and enjoy the pleasures of taking it easy. Admire the sweeping views of Table Rock Lake and cast a line at one of the best fishing spots in the U.S. Continue to breathe nature in on a hike through the woods of Pilot Knob Conservation Area — there’s a good chance you’ll have the trails all to yourself. “Ease sore muscles with a massage in a treehouse at Stonewater Cove’s Treehouse Spa, where there’s also a meditation room. After these euphoria-inducing activities, a day on the town may seem downright bustling. Hunt for antique treasures



at Red Barn and treat yourself to some sweets at Cup Cakes and Cream.” Harrison said a lot of the places mentioned in the article end up being why so many people move to the area. “Everybody likes those amenities and wants that sense of community,” she said. “And when they visit here, they see it, and they remember.” Shell Knob boasts a large boating community, but Harrison said the kayakers are making their way to the lake now as well. “Whether for fishing or just for recreation, they like to explore the coves and shorelines,” she said. “We also have more people coming here to hike the trails in the Mark Twain National Forest.” Harrison said the chamber works hard to promote the area, including going to five boat shows per year in Missouri and surrounding states. “While at those boat shows, we’ve seen a renewed interest in relocation, and many people are buying houses in the area,” she said. “We always get the word out about our events, and that helps bring people, as well.” This year, the list of events includes: Home & Business Show, April 13 -14; Multi-Species Fishing Tournament, May 19; Poker Run, June 16; Thunder & Fire Fireworks Display, July 4; Shakin’ in the Shell Fest, Sept. 14-15; Custom & Classic Car Show, Sept. 15; Homer Sloan Buddy Bass Fishing Tournament, Oct. 7; and the Christmas Tour of Homes, Dec. 1. Beyond that, Harrison said the chamber does radio interviews, like the “Live in Shell Knob” segments, to bring local families to the lake and events. There is also a non-profit becoming more active, Friends of Shell Knob, that may qualify for grants to help at the Chamber Park or with other community groups like Shell Knob In The Spotlight, the local theatre troupe. Email:

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Connection Magazine | 13

Jim Schemanski, of Shell Knob, checks out a restored 1913 “T” Bucket at the 27th Annual Classic and Custom Car Show, which ran in conjunction with Shakin’ in the Shell at Chamber Park last year.

Jazlin Horton, right, 14, and sister Emberly Horton, 16, both of Blue Eye, enjoy the swings ride while at Shakin’ in the Shell at Chamber Park.

Atilee Oots, 4, of Shell Knob, spotted her landing while trekking through one of the giant inflatable courses at Shakin’ in the Shell at Chamber Park last year.

Breanna Marcoux, left, 19, of Neosho, painted the face of Holly Sherfy, 12, of Shell Knob, at last years’ Shakin’ in the Shell at Chamber Park.

14 | April 2018

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“The Chamber is a 501-C6, so we are not grant-eligible,” Harrison said. “But, Friends of Shell Knob is a 501-C3 and can qualify for a lot of grants to help at the park. They have a separate board and are open for the community to use, as well.” Another big draw, Harrison said, is the fact that Shell Knob is unincorporated, meaning it has no city taxes. “We’ve stayed unincorporated for the lower taxes,” she said. “We pay county taxes and are covered by county sheriff ’s offices in Barry and Stone counties, and we have the county road districts. The downside is we don’t have some of the local amenities a city may offer, but when you’re retired, low taxes are nice.” Shell Knob also has a K-8 school with a low student-to-teacher ratio. “Kids go there until eighth grade, then go to Cassville or Blue Eye,” Harrison said. “Shell Knob No. 78 is a great school and has won multiple awards. Families here love it.” While there are many reasons to live in Shell Knob, Harrison said it isn’t a luxury everyone has. “We have a local tradition we call the taillight party,” she said. “On Memorial Day weekend or Labor Day Monday, a lot of people sit on their porches and watch the line of taillights leaving the town. We wave at them as they go home and we hope to see them back.” For more information about Shell Knob, people may visit the chamber website at www.shellknob. com, or call the chamber at 417858-3300. The Expedia article can be viewed at: features/best-place-escapeevery-state/#ShellKnob.

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Shell Knob 2018 Events: Home & Business Show April 13 -14 Multi-Species Fishing Tournament May 19 Poker Run June 16 Thunder & Fire Fireworks Display July 4 Shakin’ in the Shell Fest Sept. 14-15 Custom & Classic Car Show Sept. 15 Homer Sloan Buddy Bass Fishing Tournament Oct. 7 Christmas Tour of Homes Dec. 1 For more information about Shell Knob, people may visit the chamber website at or call the chamber at 417-858-3300. The Shell Knob Expedia article can be viewed at:

16 | April 2018

Connection Magazine | 17

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Virginia Mayer, center, presented a historic brick found about 40 years ago on Broadway in Monett, directing people to not spit on the sidewalk to the Monett Museum. She and fellow researcher Pat Pomeroy, left, presented the artifact to Steve Wise, Monett Museum board member.

Improving public health a brick at a time


ometime in the 1970s, a construction project underway on Broadway in downtown Monett unearthed some of the bricks used to pave the street in 1911. Virginia and Cecil Mayer were walking down the sidewalk and a stack of bricks caught Virginia’s eye. Two of them had “Don’t spit on the sidewalk” imprinted into it. “I was working as a registered nurse at the chest hospital in Mt. Vernon at the time, in the intensive care unit,” Virginia said.

Story by Murray Bishoff

The bricks spoke to a day when tuberculosis was a dreaded disease, far more prevalent than it is today. Virginia was intrigued, both professionally and personally. She took the bricks home with her. Recently, she donated the least worn of the bricks to the Monett Historical Society’s museum as an artifact of Monett’s earlier, more harrowing days. Many of the bricks on Broadway, located below about five inches of asphalt, were manufactured in Coffeyville, Kan. According to researchers, the main Connection Magazine | 19

Renovations on Broadway in downtown Monett in 2000 show the bricked surface remains not far below the surface under the asphalt roadway. An earlier repair effort resulted in the discovery of the brick donated by Virginia Mayer to the Monett museum. (below) Installation of enlarged storm sewers on Fourth Street in Monett in 2000, just north of Broadway, show the layer of bricks still sit not far below the surface, down only a couple inches on side streets.

‘Don’t spit on the sidewalk’ brick engraving testifies to earlier, scarier days Coffeyville brick manufacturer put the “Don’t spit on the sidewalk” imprint on every fifth brick made. Many were used throughout the Midwest for paving streets and sidewalks, so the effort proliferated the message. The “Don’t Spit on the sidewalk” campaign was started by Dr. Samuel Crumbine of Dodge City, Kan. He witnessed public health hazards, including the communal use of a cup at public drinking fountains and spitting in public places. Crumbine convinced a brick producer in Topeka to first begin imprinting the slogan on its products, and others followed. Crumbine served as secretary for the Kansas State Board of Health from 1906 to 1924, a popular period for laying brick streets and sidewalks. He argued that a dog or cat could lick up the spit of a TB patient and carry the bacteria home and infect the family. According to R. Alton Lee’s book ‘From Snake Oil to Medicine: Pioneering Public Health,” in 1909, Crumbine persuaded the Kansas legislature to pass a law banning spitting on public sidewalks, streets, alleys, railroad or street cars, and in the halls of public buildings. The effort further resulted in cuspidors and spittoons being placed in railroad cars A public marker in honor of Crumbine’s efforts was erected in a park in Wichita by the city. 20 | April 2018

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The Missouri Rehabilitation Center was established as the Missouri State Sanatorium in 1907 to treat tuberculosis, known at the time as the “white plague.” Many from Monett and surrounding communities worked at the sanatorium over the decades. Thanks to the introduction of antibiotics and other drugs, TB largely became a threat of the past in the 1950s. Subsequently, the sanatorium shifted its emphasis to lung patients and chest disease. The Missouri General Assembly changed the name to the Missouri State Chest Hospital in 1971 and expanded its mission. The facility became the Missouri Rehabilitation Center in 1985, shifting its mission with the introduction of traumatic brain injury treatment. With her brick, Virginia Mayer started researching the reasons behind the brick. She recruited her friend, retired Monett teacher Pat Pomeroy, to help. TB was not their first idea explaining the artifact. “I thought at first it was from tobacco,” Pat said. Finding Crumbine’s story, Virginia said it all became much clearer. She recalled his other crusades, including his popularization of the edicts “Swat the fly” and “Bait the rat.” “I had worked in government hospitals,” said Pat. “I worked at one in Window Rock, Arizona, while in my twenties. All the personnel there were U.S. Navy. That had been an old TB hospital. It comes down to sanitation.” Virginia hopes her donation to the Monett museum will help residents understand better the now curious public health threats that were very real under the places where people walk today. “And understand how serious TB was,” added Pat. “A lot of people don’t know anything about it, and it’s not an eradicated disease. We’ve had cases recently in Anderson, from immigrants. “There’s a lot more to it than just a brick,” she added. 


Keltic Knot

The tie that binds musically

Keltic Knot revives Irish music for southwest Missouri

7 p.m. on April 20, Monett will have a special treat in hosting the Irish band Keltic Knot in the local ensemble’s first performance at the Monett High School Performing Arts Center, sponsored by the Monett Historical Society. Ozarks music has roots that can be traced back through the Appalachians and the Scotch-Irish immigrants who settled there. Rather than springing from this pool on inspiration, Keltic Knot evolved from purer roots and now has expanded to explore contemporary music with the instrumentation of both traditional and popular bands that play Irish music.

Story by Murray Bishoff

Group founder Joel Wren fell in love with the sound of bagpipes. He mentioned this to his wife one night while watching the film “Highlander,” where a piper plays a lament outside a castle after a battle. His wife, Natalie, bought him a pipe, resembling a recorder, to practice the fingering, thinking that might be the end of it. But he stayed at it, bought a full unit, found a teacher in Tulsa and began playing with the Tulsa Pipes and Drums. The Wrens later moved from Joplin to Aurora, too far to stay connected with the Tulsa group. Joel began playing the bagpipes for funerals and weddings, playing as far as Eureka Springs parades. His teenage daughter, Connection Magazine | 23

Elisa, had started playing guitar and he asked if she would consider joining him and perhaps singing on some of the Irish ballads he told about in his presentations at nursing homes. They were a big hit. “Elisa’s voice is so well suited for this type of music,” he said. “She has one of the most beautiful voices I’ve ever heard.” In 2010, Elisa’s guitar teacher, Tim Snider, joined the duo, and suddenly they had enough to play in Springfield clubs like Dublin’s Pass. Joel switched to the Irish drum, the Bodhrán, and penny whistle, since bagpipes were too loud to play with a group. Tim varied his time between guitar, mandolin and bass. Their venues expanded to city parks and restaurants. “All three members shared a passion for the richness and beauty of traditional Irish and Scottish music,” Natalie recalled. “Ripping through a fast Irish gig can get people clapping their hands and tapping their toes, while few forms of music are more lovely to listen to than a beautifully sung Irish air. This is the kind of music that Keltic Knot wanted to bring to the Ozarks.”

Karolina Fraczak

Ripping through a fast Irish gig can get people clapping their hands and tapping their toes

Natalie Wren, wife of Joel Wren

24 | April 2018

Zach McMeley

Joel Wren

Founded by Joel Wren, the band includes five members: Joel on drums, Elisa Wren on vocals and guitar, Tim Snider on guitar, Zach McMeley on vocals and percussion and Karolina Fraczak on violin

Elisa Wren

Tim Snider Connection Magazine | 25

Members of Keltic Knot, from left: Zach McMeley, Karolina Fraczak, Elisa Wren, Joel Wren and Tim Snider.

In 2013, Zach McMeley joined the trio as a percussionist. He had played drums since grade school and had been part of Kickapoo High School’s Marching Band and Winter Drum Line. Playing a full drum set and the Cajon — a hand played boxlike percussion instrument — spoons and shaker, he added another layer of sound to the group. In 2015, Zach introduced the band to Karolina Fraczak, who moved from Poland to the U.S. at age 12. A classically trained violinist, she had no experience playing Irish music, nor was she greatly stepped in traditional Polish music, which has a stronger hold in the mountain regions. She was a city kid from Warsaw, trained to read music. “I figured I had nothing to lose,” Karolina said. “They started playing to see if I could follow along. 26 | April 2018

Improvising was very new to me. I decided to go in and try to prepare for the style with what I was familiar with. During rehearsals I’d look for the lines I heard, write it down, or figure out a music line and write it down myself. I was generating my own sheet music. With that, I’d utilize what I’m used to with free flowing improvisation. The more familiar I am with a piece, the more I try to expand out of my comfort zone and improvise on stage.” “Karolina could play beyond our expectations,” Joel said. All of the players have continued to expand their musical horizons. Joel has looked further into playing contemporary music, such as songs by the Cranberries and even Fleetwood Mac. The band’s instrumentation expanded. Joel added the electric bass to the mix as Tim, who now lives

in Mt. Vernon, turned to the electric guitar. Karolina, a performance major at Missouri State University, as plays in the Springfield Symphony and in the pit in MSU opera productions, as well as for Springfield Contemporary Theater and weddings. She has even played some gigs in Branson. She introduced the band to the music of contemporary violinist Lindsey Stirling, and they’ve done a number of Stirling’s pieces. Zach, a public relations major, is studying music therapy at Drury University. Elisa sometimes joins her dad in singing the old Irish drinking songs, now that she has reached that age. She is a music major in college. Ben Todd has also come on board as a sound and light manager. A drum manger for the MSU Pride Band for three years, Ben is now a graduate students working on his master’s degree in conducting.

A Christmas 2017 concert. (right) Playing before a full house at the Woodshed in Carthage.

The group has cultivated its own following. Fans have given themselves the name “Keltic Knotheads.” “Through the years, Keltic Knot has continued playing traditional Irish music but has also evolved by adding some contemporary songs to their repertoire,” Natalie Wren said. “They always incorporate a touch of Celtic flare to these new additions. You’ll find that Keltic Knot plays a wide variety of music and appeals to diverse audiences.” The band has played in Monett at Mocha Jo’s in 2013 and at the Repurposed Faire, as well as at the MARC in Mt. Vernon. They frequently play at the Woodshed in Carthage and for the Third Thursday Art Walk in Joplin. They have one compact disc available. Joel said they are pondering a Christmas CD after having frequent requests.

“We’re always looking for new material,” Joel said. “With four band members in college, we have a hard time getting together. We try to add two new songs to our St. Patrick’s Day concerts each year, and for our Christmas concerts so our show doesn’t get stale. It’s just fun. That’s how we’ve always treated it.” 

Keltic Knot to perform 7 p.m. on April 20 Monett High School Performing Arts Center, sponsored by the Monett Historical Society.

Connection Magazine | 27

A cabinet holding various sizes of lead type, its top adorned with an old typewriter and other memorabilia from The Miller Press, is still right at home in the building on Main Street, which now serves the community as a cafe and pizzeria. The block of lead forming the flag for the former Miller Press newspaper, a Pennington Seed logo and other formed type, sits on display at the former offices of The Miller Press, now home to Ma’s Cafe and Pizzeria. The process, called moveable type, was not much different than that of Johannes Gutenberg, who conceived the idea in 1452.

28 | April 2018

Laura Hance is the owner of Ma’s Cafe and Pizzeria in Miller. The eatery is home to the former Miller Press, and boasts displays of photographs, newspaper clippings and various school memorabilia.

Now, this is old news Former Miller Press office is now home to Ma’s Cafe and Pizzeria


hat was once home to The Miller Press, located at 203 E. Main St. in Miller, is now Ma’s Cafe and Pizzeria, owned by Laura Hance, who is serving home cooked meals to customers from all over the southwest Missouri region. Tables, chairs and other food service accoutrements are scattered among the antique printing press equipment that still call the building home. The newspaper, purchased in 1957 by Kenny and Flavia Friar, was an icon to the offset printing tradition prior to the invention and invasion of computers into the industry. The Friars used a metal typesetting machine, where stories were typed on a machine that dropped individual reverse-image letters and punctuation marks into a tray that made up the

Story and photos by Melonie Roberts

Waitress Hannah Somers, left, checks out customers, Randy Thomas and Mike and Sharon Hunt, at Ma’s Cafe and Pizzeria in Miller.

form of the page, which was then inked and “pressed” firmly onto paper. The machine now sits near the check-out of the eatery. The Friars sold the business to an Osceola publisher, Larry Brownlee in 1987. The press now claims a corner

under the balcony in the popular cafe, surrounded by ketchup bottles and high chairs. Randy Thomas remembers his grandfather, Carlton Thomas, introducing him to the Friars when he was a teen. Connection Magazine | 29

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Our whole menu is home cooked. Nothing comes out of a freezer bag.

“I remember coming into the press office back when the wood floors were still intact,” said Thomas, as he sipped a cold soda. “I had taken a journalism class in school back in Corpus Christi, Texas, and I really liked taking photos. Kenny was a nice guy, but he didn’t want anyone touching anything. He’s say, ‘Don’t touch that! You’ll get hurt if you don’t know what you’re doing.’ But I really enjoyed looking around the old press and equipment.” Thomas, a regular at the cafe, grinned and complimented one of the waitresses. “She remembers me, and is always calling out my order before I even sit down,” he said. “One of these days, I’m going to throw her a curve ball.” The menu selections feature members of Hance’s family in one way or another. “Our most popular pizza, pepperoni, sausage and bacon, is called The Record Breaker,” said Hance. “It’s in honor of Hannah Wilkerson, my cousin, who still holds the state record for shooting 3,724 points during her 2006-10 high school basketball career. They retired her No. 5 jersey. “Our most popular specialty burger is the Jared Burger, which is a cowboy burger that features my homemade barbecue sauce and onion rings.” But perhaps the most popular item in the menu by far is the cashew chicken, made by her mother, Carla Wilson, at least once a week. “These Miller folks love their cashew chicken,” Hance said. What makes Ma’s Cafe and Pizzeria different is the way the food is made.

Lauren Hance,

owner of Ma’s Cafe and Pizzeria

A job case, holding several drawers containing individual uppercase and lowercase letters made out of a lead alloy, sits on display at the former Miller Press office in Miller. The building, restored by former owners Marsha and Jack Hill, is now home to Ma’s Cafe and Pizzeria, and is owned by Laura Hance.

“Our whole menu is home cooked,” Hance said. “Nothing comes out of a freezer bag. All of our onion rings, zucchini and mushrooms are hand battered. Our crab rangoon is handmade.” Hance, who previously owned Ma’s Cafe just across the street, knew she was going to have to expand her seating area in order for her business to continue to flourish. “It was a smaller building,” she said. “I was at a point I didn’t know what I was going to do.” The old press building, purchased by Jack and Marsha Hill in 2005,

had come on the market. The Hills had taken on the major challenge of gutting the building, replacing the squeaky wooden floors with a solid concrete foundation and chipping plaster off the walls, and opened their business, Marshiano’s Pizzeria, in 2011. They also continued to operate Maggie Mae’s, a tea room and catering business located at 206 W. 4th St., in Miller. One Saturday morning in 2016, a realtor came into the small cafe and told her the pizzeria was for sale. “I went home and made my husband pray with me about it,” she said.

Connection Magazine | 31

The antique typesetting machine, using lead type to write stories for publication, sits among other community memorabilia at what is now Ma’s Cafe and Pizzeria in Miller.

32 | April 2018

Flavia and Kenny Friar, former owners of The Miller Press, are pictured checking the layout of a page of the paper, which was printed on oldstyle press equipment that used lead type in a frame.

“We went and looked at it on a Sunday afternoon and two weeks later, March 5, signed the papers on it. It has been the best business decision I’ve ever made.” The business features a photo display that reaches from one end of the building to the other, along with newspaper clippings and other artifacts familiar to long-time Millerites, which spark more than a few memories of days gone by. One of the photos features several Miller residents, including Harold Jones, who worked on the paper folding machine, Ray (Shorty) Johnson, who was the City Marshal and helped on press nights toting papers to the back for addressing and mailing, and Shirley Hill, the press operator, would work with owners Kenny and Flavia Friar until the early morning hours on Thursday to get the weekly edition finished and to the post office across the street in time for the morning delivery. “Former residents come in from out of town and see photos on the wall of people they know and conversation just starts,” Thomas said. “People forget stuff, but when they see those photos, it starts coming back. I remember the Saturday night Hootenannies and square dances at the bandstand, get-

ting together with my friends and arm wresting, dancing and flirting with the girls. It was a big thing around here.” Kenny Friar was also one of the main organizers of the weekly talent show, which featured homegrown entertainment on the bandstand and concessions sold by members of the Miller Lions Club. “There are a lot of great people in this town,” Thomas said. “We need younger people to pick up the reins and keep these traditions going.” “People will see friends and relatives in pictures on the wall, and they will start to reminisce,” Hance said. “It’s a good feeling to have those photos and that memorabilia there. It’s preserving our history.” “Miller has lost a lot of businesses,” Wilson said. “We’ve always wanted the town to do well. It’s nice to be back in our hometown and be able to give back to the community.” “People thrive off of home cooking,” Hance said. “This is definitely not fast food, but I promise, it will be good.” Ma’s Cafe and Pizzeria is open from 6 a.m. to 2 p.m. Monday through Wednesday and 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. Thursday through Saturday. Daily specials are posted to Ma’s Cafe & Pizzeria on Facebook. 

This photo shows a busy press night at the former Miller Press office. Workers, from left, included Harold Jones, on the paper folding machine, Kenny Friar, owner of The Miller Press, Ray (Shorty) Johnson, toting bundled papers to the back for addressing and mailing, and Shirley Hill, press operator. The former Press office is now home to Ma’s Cafe and Pizzeria, where some of the antiquated machinery still resides.

Randy Thomas, who recently returned to the Miller area after years living out of state, recalled the regular Hootenannies, square dancing, arm wrestling with his buddies and flirting with the girls at the bandstand back when the bandstand was the place to be on a small town Saturday night.

Connection Magazine | 33

Meet Jerry Sebastian, a member of our Board of Directors!



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Jerry Sebastian has been a member of the Community National Bank board of directors for 12 years. Jerry and his wife, Sue, are long term residents of Monett. Jerry retired after a 35 year banking career in Monett. Jerry invites everyone to come experience the difference of banking at CNB.

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Healthy Connection

p-fotography |

Prebiotics vs. Probiotics


here is a lot of talk about prebiotics and probiotics, but does everyone know what they really are? Lets begin with prebiotics. Prebiotics are natural, non-digestible food components that help promote the growth of beneficial bacteria in the gut. They promote the good kind of bacteria that we want to have in our gut to help us stay healthy. Research has shown that prebiotics may improve gastrointestinal health as well as potentially enhancing calcium absorption. We can find prebiotics in our diet by eating foods such as bananas, onions, garlic, leeks, asparagus, artichokes, soybeans and whole-wheat foods. Now let’s talk about probiotics. Probiotics are another source of good bacteria that we want, but they are live cultures. We can usually find them naturally in our gut. Probiotics can help boost immunity and overall health, especially gastrointestinal health. You can get probiotics at your local pharmacy, but there also are ways to get them naturally through your diet. Increasing your intake of fermented dairy foods like yogurt, kefir products, and aged cheeses will increase the probiotics in your gut. Other non-dairy foods that contain probiotics are kimchi, sauerkraut, miso, tempeh, cultured non-dairy yogurts, and kombucha (see recipe on the next page).

Kara Wood is a Dietetic Intern who is currently working on her Masters in Nutrition Diagnostics at Cox College.

Connection Magazine | 35

Evgeniya |

You will increase your chances of having a healthy gut if you pair prebiotics and probiotics together. Prebiotics and probiotics work together synergistically. Research has shown that prebiotics for breakfast and lunch then probiotics for dinner can help restore and improve gut health. Different ways you can pair them in your diet are bananas on top of yogurt or stir-frying asparagus with tempeh. If you have any other questions about prebiotics or probiotics, contact your local registered dietitian nutritionist.

Homemade Kombucha Ingredients

*SCOBY = Symbiotic Culture Of Bacteria and Yeast these can be purchased online or made at home

3.5 qt (14 c) Water 6 Green Tea Bags 1 c Sugar 1.5 c Unflavored Starter Tea or Store-bought Kombucha 1 SCOBY* Stock pot 1-gallon glass jar or two 2-quart glass jars Glass bottles

Prebiotics and probiotics work together synergistically. Research has shown that prebiotics for breakfast and lunch then probiotics for dinner can help restore and improve gut health.

Flavorings like fruit, ginger, herbs, or juice

Directions: 1. Bring water to a boil in your stockpot. Take it off the heat and stir in the sugar. Add the tea bags and let it steep as the water cools. 2. Once the tea mixture is cooled, take out the tea bags and add the starter tea. This is important as it will acidify the mixture so that no bad bacteria can take hold before fermentation starts. 3. Pour the tea/starter mixture into your brewing jar(s) and put your SCOBY in using clean hands. Secure some cheesecloth or paper towel over the top of the jar(s) with an elastic band. 4. Put the jar somewhere out of direct sunlight. Leave it for seven to 10 days. 5. After seven days, pour out a bit of the kombucha every day and have a sip. When it tastes just right to you, you can bottle it or pour it into storage jars to keep in your fridge. 6. If you plan on making another batch, now’s the time. Follow the steps to prepare the tea mixture and transfer the SCOBY (and two cups of this batch of kombucha to be used as your starter) into the cooled tea/sugar mixture of the new batch. Make sure you’ve washed the jar for this fresh batch! If the SCOBY is getting really thick, carefully peel off a bottom layer. 7. To flavor your finished kombucha, you can use herbs, juice, or fruit in some soda bottles or swing-top jars. Leave about half an inch of room at the top when you pour in the kombucha. Let it sit for one to three days at room temperature; if you’re using glass, please check it often to make sure it isn’t getting too carbonated. You don’t want your bottles to explode.

36 | April 2018

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Connection Magazine | 37

Proud Parent

Charli McNabb

One year old Her parents are Ricky and Elisha McNabb of Washburn, Mo.

Are you a proud parent? If so, here’s your opportunity to show off that cute kid of yours. We invite you to share a photo of your child to be featured in Connection’s very own proud parent cutest kid contest.


Congratulations Charli is April’s cutest kid.

Email your child’s photo to Photos should be sent in the original JPG format at the highest resolution possible. Remember to include your child’s name, parent’s name, age, city and your contact information. The contest is open to children ages 10 and younger. The photos submitted will be used for the sole purpose of this contest.

38 | April 2018

Dale E. Assing, O.D.

~ Optometrist ~

Your local Cassville Eyecare Professional for over 39 years We accept Medicare and Medicaid as well as most other vision plans and insurance

504 West St, Cassville, MO 65625 (at the Intersection of Sixth & West Streets)


s ’ n Ke Collision Center The Area’s Finest Collision Repair Facility

THE GIG IS HERE Fast internet is now available in Cassville, Roaring River and Exeter. Speeds up to 1 Gbps PROVIDED BY

At Ken’s, it’s all about the details You know Ken’s Collision as The Area’s Finest Collision Repair and Glass Facility, and now Ken’s is proud to offer Professional Auto and Truck Detailing. Our experts bring back that New Car Feeling inside and out, cleaning and polishing your vehicle with the same attention to detail that we give every car and truck we repair. Just another way we work for you, the customer, to make sure your car is fixed right, to Factory Specifications with the right parts, by highly trained technicians.

Ken’s Collision Center – when it’s time to focus on the details!

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(417) 847-FAST Connection Magazine | 39

Parenting Column

Plastic Easter Eggs Get a New Life


pril showers bring May flowers, right? Well, yes, but the month of April also brings a ton of plastic Easter eggs that somehow make their way from our kids’ Easter baskets to every crevice of our homes. We love them when they’re all wrapped up in pretty cellophane and in one place (on the store shelves) but after they’ve been filled with candy, hidden, hunted and played with, what’s next for these kid-loving plastic eggs?

Use empty eggs as counters. Grab 10 eggs (or more) and write the number one on the bottom part of the egg and the number one on the top part of the egg. Follow this pattern all the way up to number 10 (or higher if you use more eggs). Separate the eggs and mix them up. Have your child match the tops and bottoms together by numbers. (One goes with one, two goes with two, etc.) This fun game helps with number recognition and fine motor skills. The snapping together of the two shells allows your child to use their hands to ensure the egg snaps together. You could also try this with the alphabet for letter recognition.

Make your own maracas! Grab a bunch of eggs and fill each one with something different. For maracas, think of filling two eggs with dried beans. Be sure to run a piece of tape around the egg to stop 40 | April 2018

beans from flying out when your little one starts shaking them. For a longer lasting set of maracas, use a hot glue gun to seal the top and bottom of the egg together.

For a fun guessing game, put rice in one egg, peanuts in another egg, skittles in another, cotton, and basically anything small that can fit inside. Shh! Don’t let your child see what you’re hiding in the eggs. Have them shake them to try and guess what’s on the inside.

Who says egg hunts have to be about Easter?

Gather up those eggs and fill them with clues! Each egg will hold a piece of paper inside with a note to find the next egg. For example, “Go to the place where you hang your backpacks up.” Fill and hide as many eggs as you’d like and fill the last egg with something special like a quarter or a handmade ‘IOU’ for a Happy Meal. Your kids will get a kick out of running around the house like investigators and you’ll enjoy watching them work as a team to solve the next clue. You could do this in the house on a cold and rainy day or outside in your yard on a beautiful summer day.

Empty plastic eggs make the best bath toys. Think about it. They’re cheap, easy to clean, and what kid doesn’t like filling things up with water while taking a bath? Throw a couple of eggs in the tub at the next bath time and watch your child’s eyes light up. Their imagination will go wild with turning their eggs into submarines, tiny beds, or even rocket ships. They can pour water from one half of the shell into the other and for younger kids you can reiterate the words, “empty” and “full” depending on whether or not there is water in that half of the egg. These eggs will also float so the next time Barbie decides to take a dip during your daughter’s bath, tell her that Barbie needs to hang onto the ‘life raft,’ aka ‘egg’ to stay afloat! To clean the eggs after a couple of bath time adventures, spray them with a little bleach water and let dry. Instead of dreading the amount of eggs your kids will inevitably collect over Easter, use these ideas to make fun memories with your children. You never know, your kids might also come up with some of their own!

Meagan Ruffing is a parenting journalist with a passion for crafts. She likes to find new uses for everyday things to foster a fun and free-spirited way of learning in her kids. Visit her at for more fun ideas.

Please join us for

Scott Regional Technology Center Recognition Night

Tuesday, May 1 and Thursday, May 3 at 7:00 PM A night dedicated to recognizing our students who have successfully completed their courses at Scott Tech. We will be giving awards and scholarships to honorable students. Wishing all of our students good luck as they take their skills learned at Scott Tech into their upcoming journey! NEW BUSINESS HOURS: Mon. - Thurs. • 11 a.m. - 9 p.m. Fri. & Sat. • 11 a.m. - 10 p.m. Sunday • 11 a.m. - 3 p.m.

To learn more, visit our website at

417-235-7022 • #2 David Sippy Drive • Monett Office Hours: Monday - Friday 8 a.m. - 4 p.m.



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Connection Magazine | 41

Field Trips es Birthday Parti ions Daily Admiss Memberships ts Special Even

Where your child can be anything they want to be! Cafe Wifi Gift Shop Character Appearances

* Friday April 13th Frog Love * Friday April 20th Party With A Princess * Sunday April 22nd Spring Planting Celebration

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Fun & Fancy Treats

Dirt Cake

Cat Poop Cookies



1 (20 ounce) package chocolate sandwich cookies with creme filling

1/4 cup honey

1/4 cup butter, softened

2/3 cup butter

1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, softened 1 cup confectioners’ sugar 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 2 (3.9 ounce) packages instant chocolate pudding mix 3 cups milk 1 (12 ounce) container frozen whipped topping, thawed

Cereal Treats Ingredients 1/4 cup butter 1 (10.5 ounce) package miniature marshmallows 5 cups crispy rice cereal


• Grease a 9x13 inch pan with butter or cooking spray. • In a large microwave safe bowl, combine butter and marshmallows. Microwave on high for 1 to 2 minutes, stirring every 30 seconds, until smooth. Remove from the oven and stir in the cereal. • Press in to the prepared pan with the back of a buttered spoon. Let the treats cool for about 2 hours until set. Cut into squares and serve.

15 gummi worms

Directions • Put the cookies in a food processor and process until they become fine crumbs. Set aside. • In a large bowl, combine the butter or margarine, cream cheese, confectioners sugar and vanilla flavoring. Beat on low speed to mix then beat on medium speed until smooth. Add the chocolate pudding mix and milk to the bowl. Beat on low speed to combine. • Fold the whipped topping into the pudding mixture with a rubber spatula. • Assemble in the ungreased 9x13 inch pan in layers as follows: first layer, 1/3 cookie crumbs; second layer, 1/2 pudding mixture; third layer, 1/3 cookie crumbs; fifth layer, 1/3 cookie crumbs. • Tuck the ends of gummy worms in the cookie “dirt”. Be sure to have a worm on each piece. Store in the refrigerator. Chill for at least 3 hours before serving. Cut into 15 squares, or serve with a clean garden trowel or a toy sand shovel if serving in the flower pot.

1/4 cup molasses 1 egg 2 1/3 cups whole wheat flour 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves 1 (32 ounce) package wheat and barley nugget cereal (e.g. Grape-Nuts™) 1/2 cup crushed ramen noodles

Directions • In a medium bowl, Microwave the honey until it bubbles. This may take up to 1 minute. Stir in the molasses, butter and egg. Beat until smooth. Stir in the flour, cinnamon, ginger, and cloves until combined. Then add the dramatic additions of your choice such as coconut, ramen, chocolate chips, or peanuts. Chill dough until firm. • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Roll dough into logs about 3/4 inch in diameter. Cut into pieces the approximate length of cat poop. Roll pieces in the cereal, place on an unprepared cookie sheet, and bake for 10 to 15 minutes in the preheated oven. • Serve the cookies in a disposable cat litter box, on a bed of cereal, with a brand new litterbox scoop. Add plastic flies, and dip the litter scoop in chocolate for added fun.

Connection Magazine | 43

Hamburger Cookies

Hot Dog Cookies

Ice Cream Baked Potatoes




4 drops green food coloring 1/2 teaspoon water 1/4 cup flaked coconut 48 vanilla wafers 24 chocolate covered thin mints 1 tablespoon sesame seeds


• Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (180 degrees C). • In a bowl, combine food coloring with a few drops of water. Add coconut and cover the container, shake until coconut is tinted. Set aside. • Place 1/2 of the vanilla wafers, flat side up, in an ungreased cookie sheet. Top each wafer with a peppermint patty. Place in the oven about 1 minute or just until chocolate begins to soften. • Remove cookies from oven and sprinkle each mint with 1/2 teaspoon coconut (for lettuce). Place another vanilla wafer on top and press gentle. With a clean paint brush, brush the top of each hamburger with just enough water to moisten so that the sesame seeds will stick when sprinkled on top of each cookie. NOTE: You can use canned chocolate frosting in place of peppermint patty, then eliminate the baking.

44 | April 2018

1 cup butter, softened 1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 2 cups all-purpose flour 4 drops red food coloring 3 tablespoons flaked coconut 2 drops green food coloring 1 (4.5 ounce) tube prepared yellow frosting

Directions • In a medium bowl, cream together the butter, confectioners’ sugar and vanilla until smooth. Stir in the flour until dough is smooth. Remove 1 cup of dough, then cover and refrigerate remaining dough. Knead the red food coloring into the 1 cup of dough until the color of a hot dog is achieved. Refrigerate all dough for 1 hour. • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Divide the red dough into 16 portions. Roll each piece into a 2 1/2 inch long sausage shape. For buns, divide the white dough into 16 portions and shape into 3 inch logs. Slice them almost in half lengthwise. Spread the buns open and place the hot dog doughs inside, leaving buns open. Place 2 inches apart onto ungreased cookie sheets. • Bake for 12 to 15 minutes in the preheated oven, or until firm. Remove from cookie sheets to cool. In a small jar or plastic bag, combine the coconut and green food coloring. Shake until coconut is evenly colored. Sprinkle over hot dog cookies when cool and make a zig zag with the yellow frosting for mustard.

1 pint vanilla ice cream 1 (1 ounce) envelope instant cocoa 4 tablespoons sweetened whipped cream


• Scoop out 4 balls of ice cream roughly the size and shape of small potatoes. Roll in the hot cocoa mix until coated. Place on a plate and top with a dollop of whipped cream. The ice cream will look like baked potatoes with sour cream on top. Eat and enjoy.

Because you can!

Cutest Pet

Chance is this month’s winner fur baby of Larry & Karen Merritt of Monett

If you think your furry or feathered friend is the cutest in the area, let us know! We invite you to share a photo of your pet to be featured in Connection’s Cutest Pet contest. Email your pet’s photo to: Photos should be sent in the original JPG format at the highest resolution possible. Remember to include your pet’s name, city of residence and your contact information. Connection Magazine | 45

Over the hills and through the woods. Literally. his is a true story. It would not be wrong to say it was a miracle, 80 years ago, right here in the Ozarks. It’s a story out of The Monett Times from September of 1937. Florence Jackson was 4 years old at the time, with curly red hair, the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Arthur Jackson from Chelsea, Okla. The previous week, her family traveled southeast of Shell Knob, to visit Mrs. Jackson’s brother, who ran a sawmill near the Arkansas state line, five miles northwest of Oak Grove, Ark. On the afternoon of Monday, Sept. 6, Labor Day, she and her grandfather were out walking near the mill by the edge of the woods. Florence complained that a shoe had caused a blister on her foot. She wanted to go back to the family car that was parked on a road a quarter mile away. She left her grandfather to go back to the car. She never made it. The next thing her grandfather knew, Florence had completely disappeared. Even at the time, newspapers described the territory as “dense Ozark mountains.” Much of it is still that way today. About 140 miles from Florence’s home, she would have had next to no familiarity with the place, and apparently had difficulty at her height seeing very far back up the path she had just followed.


46 | April 2018

80-year-old Ozarks miracle underscores the power of resilience, courage The report doesn’t say how much time passed before her family realized she was missing. An intense search followed for four days, without any success. That Friday, four days later, 15 miles northwest of the Arkansas town of Oak Grove, Mrs. W.G. Goodman was sitting alone in her home near Indian Creek. She heard a voice crying for someone to come get her. Mrs. Goodman went outside and saw Florence, naked, standing on the far side of Indian Creek. Wading across the creek, Mrs. Goodman retrieved the girl and took her inside. Florence was bruised and scratched, her hair was matted with mud and burrs. She said she had eaten wild grapes, tomatoes and “sheepshower,” also known as wood sorrel or oxalis, a medium-sized wild plant growing at the base of trees that she somehow knew was edible. Florence said she had followed the creek, apparently for a distance of about 10 miles, before finding the Goodman home.

What happened next wasn’t recorded. What we know is her parents arrived in their car and reached the hospital in Berryville, Ark., at about 11 p.m. Florence arrived sleeping in her mother’s arms. The initial report described her condition as “fair” and “her heart action was not good.” She had a slight temperature. They gave her warm milk at the hospital and put her to bed. She slept soundly. By morning her temperature was gone and she was reported “happy and cheerful.” “Physicians and nurses at the hospital reported the plucky little girl probably will be none the worse for her experience,” the newspapers reported. The hospital expected to release her on Saturday. “It was more than the hand of man that saved my baby,” said Florence’s mother, as she brushed her daughter’s hair at the hospital, picking out burrs while she talked to reporters. Call it what you will. The family never doubted they had witnessed a miracle.

Story and photo by Murray Bishoff

Wealth of family connections discovered

Digging up the past


udy Hoover grew up in a house in Springfield right across the road from her grandparents. “I spent as much time at my grandparent’s house as I did my own,” she said. Spending so much time with a close-knit family, Hoover heard family stories about relatives she had never met, and never would. “They were all just names to me,” she said. “Some family members had some of the strangest names, and I nev-

Story and photo by Melonie Roberts

Benjamin Tolbert Humphrey, great-great grandfather to Judy Hoover of Monett, left a journal that his second family in Greenwood County, Kansas, had published, which is pictured. Hoover was surprised to discover this second family, and they were equally surprised to find her. The two branches are now sharing information on their common family ancestry and Hoover hopes to meet them soon.

er found out what their proper names were until I was grown. “I had an Uncle Hine, and an Uncle Fette. Uncle Hine, I learned, was Heinrich, and Uncle Fette was short for Layfayette. Then there was Uncle Rip. Euripides Vitrulus. We tease new mothers in the family about naming their newborns after Uncle Rip.” When Hoover began researching her family history, tracing the family lineage brought a sense of closure and satisfaction.

“It let me know there people aren’t just names in a letter, but actual relatives that lived and breathed. I’ve always wanted to know about them, about their lives. I’ve enjoyed researching my family and finding things out.” During her research, Hoover has found value in locating documents, deeds, marriage licenses and death certificates, but perhaps the most valuable, and intriguing, are the personal letters and journals she has stumbled across along the way.

Connection Magazine | 47

“Benjamin Tolbert Humphrey is my great-great grandfather,” she said. “I found out he served in the Union Army. He married Mary Polly Mae Williams, and they had three girls. Their youngest was Arminda, and she is my grandmother.

Judy Hoover of Monett has discovered journals and papers of her ancestors, opening her eyes to the minutiae of the day-to-day living experiences during their lifetimes, as well as creating some mysteries that will, in all likelihood, never be solved. Some of the gems Hoover has discovered are letters and recipes, like the one pictured, which she retyped from the original manuscript.

48 | April 2018

I couldn’t find him on the 1870 census, and thought he had died in the war. I got his pension records and found him over in Kansas, with a different wife and different family. “Greenwood County, Kan., had a copy of his marriage certificate. I find a lot of stuff out by accident when I’m just doodling around on the computer, and that was how I discovered he had kept a journal. The second family was in possession of it, but they had it published. A member of that family contacted me to find out about the first branch of the family. No matter what the circumstances might have been, and we will never

know, we are all proud of the man who fought for what he believed in.” Additional research revealed two of her great-grandfathers and four uncles served in the Union Army during the Civil War, and two great-grandfathers and five uncles served in the Confederate Army. Two of the documents Hoover has archived in her family albums are letters from Henry Seymour, a 1st Sgt. in Company A, 14th Illinois Calvary from Atlanta, Ga., dated Sept. 8, 1864, in response to a letter from Mrs. Robinson concerning her son. The first, punctuation and spelling intact, reads:

“To Mr. and Mrs. Robinson; Friends it is my duty to inform you of the capture of your son Parker, while on a raid to central Georgia. He was with his Co on duty and was taken prisoner near Miledgeville. Capt Henderson was also taken and his friend Wm J. Young also 30 others with the same Co. He was well when he left and was captured about the 1st of August. I sincerely regret that so many of our brave Boys was taken But it could not be helped Let us trust Providence for their deliverance. Any further information concerning your (son) you can receive by addressing as below I am respectfully your Obt Servt Henry Seymour, 1st Sergt Co A, 14 Ill Vol Calvary Atlanta Georgia”

The next correspondence from Seymour was dated June 2, 1865. “Dear Madame yours of May 20th is received In reply I would say your son has not been heard from officially some of the Boys who were with him in Prison say he was very low they think he is dead. As to his pay the only way you can collect it is through the regular channels at Washington. They take your oath before a Justice of the Peace or some one who has authority to administer oaths that you are the nearest of kin to Parker Robinson late a Private of Co ‘a’, 14 Ill Vol Cav and send it to the Adjutant General USA Washington D.C. He will send you an order for his pay or further instructions. I will see that his name appears on the Muster Rolls correctly. My address when at home is Galesburg Knox County Illinois. I will do what I can for you. with sympathy Dear Madame I remain yours truly Henry Seymour Co ‘A’ 12 Ills Vol Cav Pulaski Tenn. Mrs E. Robinson Cleopatra Mo”

“I cried when I read those,” Hoover said. “He was only 15 years old.” Another letter, spelling and punctuation intact, from James Ellis to his son, dated December 30, 1853, gives a glimpse into the life of a farmer. “Dear son and daughter I take this opportunity to wright you a few lines to let you no how we are getting along we are all well at present and hope when these few lines come to hand they may find you all enjoying the same blessing the connection are all well at present thomasses wife has been sick but she got well America has a fine daughter about seven weeks olde and they call it rebeckey mildred. I have never heard a word from you since James come home I have bin looking for a leter from you until I have got tired I want you to wright as soon as you get this letter and let mee no how you are a getting a long and how you like the country and what land is worth per acher if you don’t like it no beter than Jim I don’t think you will stay there long tobacca is not selling at all at any price corn is worth forty cents per bushel porke is worth four dollars a hundred stock hogs is worth three dollars per hundred flour is worth from five to six dollars

Judy Hoover of Monett points to a framed photo of the Springfield home she grew up in. Hoover, through researching her family genealogy, discovered the deed to the home which has two restrictions — the home had to be built within 20 feet of the front of the property line and the land could not be sold to a person of color. The property is now part of the Ozark Technological College campus in Springfield.

a barrel there has bin considerable excitement in bracken county a bout the abolitionist and several has bin arrested James coopper and a free negro from augusta has bin sent to th penitentsiary for three years and mister (?) was in jail but was not tride at the last circuit court and he has bin bailed out since I have nothing of importance to wright so must come to a close I want you to wright as soon as you get this letter the olde lady sends her best love and respects to you all and to ann and all their family to robert ellis and lucinda ellis James Ellis and Milldred Ellis”

“I found the letter extremely interesting,” Hoover said. “The respect with which he called the slave back at a time when they were commonly referred to by more derogatory terms.” Hoover has also found some distant relatives’ homesites have been designated or have requested a designation on the National Historic Register. “The Freeman-Williams 19th Century home has been designated a Historic site,” she said. “The mill is no longer Connection Magazine | 49

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there, but the house still stands. Another branch of the family is seeking to have the Edward Colver home designated a historic site. He is the first Puritan I’ve found in the family. He came across with the second supply ship to the colonies in the 1600s. According to Hoover, he landed at Massachusetts with Governor’s son and they landed at Jamestown. “I have not found any links to the Mayflower,” Hoover said. “Yet.” Through all of her online research, scouring old documents, newspaper clippings, courthouse and military records, and travel to other states to scour their resources, Hoover has dedicated more than 25 years to compiling documentation of her family lineage and getting a sense of who these people were and the roles they played in their neighborhoods, communities and in the nation. “I have a fuller sense of where I come from,” she said. “With 14 aunts and uncles on my father’s side, I grew up in a big family. At dinners, they would talk about these people all the time. I just wanted to get to know them, their backgrounds.” Hoover said those interested in starting to trace their own family’s roots should take note. “Write down everything you know,” she said. “Find out as much as you can. You’ll find out interesting things about your family. “Once you do find something, you can generally go back quite a ways with it.” 

Community Calendar April 2

 The Monett Dance will be held at the

Monett park casino from 7-10 p.m. with Evelyn Lock and the Outriders band. Bring potluck or snacks to share.

 Computer classes at the Cassville

Senior Center starting at 10:30 a.m. Call 847-4510 to sign up.

 Senior Tax preparation available by ap-

pointment at Shell Knob Senior Center. Call 417-858-6952.

 Notary Services available at the Central

Crossing Senior Center in Shell Knob from 10:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.

April 4

 Taxes - by appointment at the Cassville

Senior Center. Call 417-847-4510.

 Benefit Enrollment Counseling by ap-

pointment at the Cassville Senior Center. Call 847-4510.

April 13

 Home & Business Show at the Shell

Knob School and April 13, 5 a.m.-7:30 p.m. and Saturday, April 14, 9 a.m.-3 p.m. This event is sponsored by the Shell Knob Chamber of Commerce. For more information, call 417-858-3300.

April 14

 The Seligman Chamber of Commerce

will host a dance at the Seligman Chamber Event Center at 7 p.m. Admission is $4 each, and attendees are asked to bring a snack to share. No alcohol or smoking is allowed. For more information, call 417-662-3612.

April 16

 Notary Services available at the Central

Crossing Senior Center in Shell Knob from 10:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.

April 17

 Blood Pressure checks will be available

 Grace Health Services at the Central

April 5

April 20

at the Central Crossing Senior Center in Shell Knob, from 10:30 a.m. to noon.

 Paint Class at the Cassville Senior Cen-

ter at 9:00 a.m.

April 6

 First Friday Coffee, sponsored by the

Cassville Chamber of Commerce, will be held at Spears Dental from 8 to 8:45 a.m.

April 7

 The Seligman Chamber of Commerce

will host a dance at the Seligman Chamber Event Center at 7 p.m. Admission is $4 each, and attendees are asked to bring a snack to share. No alcohol or smoking is allowed. For more information, call 417-662-3612.

April 9

 Senior Tax preparation available by ap-

pointment at Shell Knob Senior Center. Call 417-858-6952.

April 11

 Taxes - by appointment at the Cassville

Senior Center. Call 417-847-4510.

 Grace Foot Care by appointment at

Cassville Senior Center. Call 847-4510.

April 12

 Oxford Health Speaker Susan Rausch

will have a Education Presentation at the Cassville Senior Center at 11:30 a.m.

Crossing Senior Center in Shell Knob. Call for an appointment 417-858-6952.

 The Exeter High School production of

“You’re a Good Man Charlie Brown” will be performed under the direction of Kerry Hayes at 7 p.m. and also on Saturday, April 21 at 2 p.m., and at 7 p.m. in the Exeter High School cafetorium. For more info, call 417-835-2922.

April 21

 The 10th annual Pierce City Arts Festi-

val will be held at Jolly Mill, near Pierce City. There will be free art workshops, demonstrations, arts and crafts, wine tasting garden and much more sponsored by the Pierce City Arts Council, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. For vendor information, call Becky Golubski at 417-489-3041. Deadline for entry is April 14.

 The Seligman Chamber of Commerce

will host a dance at the Seligman Chamber Event Center at 7 p.m. Admission is $4 each, and attendees are asked to bring a snack to share. No alcohol or smoking is allowed. For more information, call 417-662-3612.

April 23

 Nell’s Nails will be at the Central Cross-

ing Senior Center by appointment. Call 417-858-6952.

April 25

 Nell’s Nails begins at 9 a.m. Call 847-4510

for an appointment. Walk-ins are welcome at the Cassville Senior Center.  Oxford Health Speaker Susan Rausch

will be the guest speaker at the Central Crossing Senior Center in Shell Knob.

 WIC will be at the Central Crossing

Senior Center. Call 417-858-2114 for an appointment.

April 26

 The Pierce City Senior Center Dance

will hold its regular monthly dance.

April 27

 SKITS perform a Western Comedy play

to be held April 27 and 28 at 6:30 p.m. and at 2 p.m. on the 29th at the United Methodist Church in Shell Knob at YY and Hwy 39. Advance tickets, $7 or $9 at the door. Call Barb at 417-665-9763 for info.

 A Special Birthday Lunch will be given

at the Cassville Senior Center from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

April 28

 The Seligman Chamber of Commerce

will host a dance at the Seligman Chamber Event Center at 7 p.m. Admission is $4 each, and attendees are asked to bring a snack to share. No alcohol or smoking is allowed. For more information, call 417-662-3612.

Support Groups Alcoholics Anonymous (AA)

Aurora: Alcoholics Anonymous of Aurora meets at 8 p.m. at Aurora Community of Christ Church at 120 E. Elm every Tuesday and Thursday. Call 417-229-1237 Cassville: Alcoholics Anonymous of of Cassville meets at 8 p.m. at 1308 Harold Street in Cassville every Sunday, Monday, Tuesday and Thursday. Call 417-847-3685. Eagle Rock: Alcoholics Anonymous of of Eagle Rock meets at 7 p.m. at 86 & P (Mitchel Plaza) every Monday and Wednesday. Call 417-271-0434. Marionville: Alcoholics Anonymous of of Marionville meets at 8 p.m. on Highway 60 next to Dairy Queen every Sunday. Call 417-463-7640. Monett: Alcoholics Anonymous of of Monett meets at 7 p.m. at St. Lawrence Catholic Church, 405 Seventh Street, every Sunday and Wednesday. Call 417-489-5058. Mt. Vernon: Alcoholics Anonymous of of Mt. Vernon meets at 8 p.m. at the Christian Church on 703 Hickory every Monday. Call 417-489-2413 or 417-440-1567. Washburn: Narcotics Anonymous and Alcoholics Anonymous group meets at 7 p.m. the first Tuesday of every month at the First Baptist Church Activity Center, 618 Second Street in Washburn. 417-489-7662.

Oak Pointe Bridge Club Oak Pointe Bridge Club meets every Monday and Wednesday at 10 a.m. Lunch can be purchased for $3. Call 417-235-3500.

Connection Magazine | 51

MONETT SENIOR CENTER The Monett Senior Center will have Bingo every day at noon; Pitch every Tuesday and Thursday at 12:30; and Pinochle every Monday and Friday at 12:30 p.m.

Advertisers Index Acambaro Mexican.................................... 41 Aire Serv....................................................... 50 Assing, Dr. Dale.......................................... 39 Barry Electric Coop.................................... 39 Chic-Fish-Kin.............................................. 21 Community National Bank....................... 34 Cox Medical Centers................................. 68 Crane Family Dentistry............................. 42 Diet Center.....................................................7 Doug’s Pro Lube......................................... 34 Edward Jones.................................................3 Family Room Steak House....................... 34 First State Bank of Purdy......................... 37 Fohn Funeral Home................................... 21 Four Seasons Real Estate......................... 62 Freedom Bank of Southern Missouri..... 30 Friendly Tire................................................. 63 Guanajuato Mexican................................. 54

CASSVILLE SENIOR CENTER Dominos every Tuesday and Friday at Noon. Call 417-847-4510 for more information. CENTRAL CROSSING SENIOR CENTER Shell Knob, Mo. Alzheimer Support Group meets at 2 p.m. on the third Thursday of each month. Friends’ Bridge every Friday. Call Quita at 417-271-9803 for details. Cards Galore every Friday with Pitch beginning at 9 a.m. Domino Poker, every day from 12:45. Mah Jongg every Monday and Wednesday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Line Dancing every Tuesday and Thursday from 9 to 10:30 a.m. Quilting for Charity every Wednesday and Thursday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Balance and Flexibility class is held every Monday from 9:30 to 10 a.m. Wii Bowling is every Wednesday 12:30 p.m.

Hangar Kafe...................................................2 Health Literacy Missouri.............................4 Herb Depot................................................. 37 Jim Nesbitt Motors.................................... 18 Ken’s Collision Center............................... 39 Kiddie City................................................... 42 Lackey Bodyworks..................................... 54 Les Jacobs.......................................................4 Monett Chamber of Commerce.............. 30 Monett Insurance Center......................... 62 OHA.............................................................. 37 Ozark Methodist Manor........................... 30 Peppers and Co.......................................... 30 Plymouth Junction........................................7 Quick Draw Gun......................................... 22 Race Brothers................................................2 Red Barn Café............................................. 42 Riehn, J. Michael, Attorney.........................7 Roaring River Health and Rehab............. 18

Shell knob Big Creek Leather Co................................ 13 Big Creek Resort........................................ 13 Central Crossing Senior Center............... 15 First Baptist Church................................... 13 Freedom Bank of Southern Missouri..... 15 Jug & Plug.................................................... 12 Mountain View Estates............................. 10 Paul Enterprise, Inc.................................... 15 Preston Landscaping................................. 15 Remax Lakeside.......................................... 16 Shell Knob Chamber of Commerce...........9 Shell Knob Small Engine........................... 12 Totally Home............................................... 12 Willis Insurance Agency............................ 10

Lawn & Garden

Scott Regional............................................. 41

Meeks Building Center............................. 57

Second Chances......................................... 18

Aurora Agri Center..................................... 58

Security Bank of Southwest Missouri... 63

Barry County Coop.................................... 57

Shelter Insurance................................4 & 22

Cassville MFA Agri Service...................... 56

Superior Spray Foam................................. 54

Coast to Coast............................................ 59

TH Rogers Lumber Co............................... 67

Crown Power & Equipment..................... 56

The Coffee Café............................................4

Hills Feed & More...................................... 58

The Jane Store............................................ 50

Monett Rental & Sales.............................. 59

Trogdon Marshall....................................... 54

Precision Land Services............................ 58

White’s Insurance...................................... 21

Roden Pump Service................................. 59

Whitley Pharmacy...................................... 67

Swartz Tractor............................................. 57

52 | April 2018


Cassville: Al-Anon Family Group meets at 8 p.m. at the United Methodist Church in Cassville every Thursday of each month. This is for family or friends of alcoholics.

Caregiver Support Group

Monett: Caregiver Support Group meets at Oak Pointe of Monett from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. on the first Wednesday of each month at 1011 Old Airport Road in Monett. For more information, call Kathy 417-235-3500. Shell Knob: The Alzheimer’s/Dementia Caregivers Support Group meets at the Central Crossing Senior Center, 20801 YY-15, the third Thursday of every month at 2 p.m.

The Caring People

(Single Mothers) Cassville: The Caring People, a Single Mom’s Support Group, meets the second Monday of each month from 5:30-7 p.m. at the First Baptist Church Fellowship Hall in Cassville. This is jointly sponsored by The Caring People organization and First Baptist Church, Cassville. A meal and children’s activities are provided. The meeting is open to anyone. For more information, call 417-847-2965.

Celebrate Recovery

Cassville: Celebrate Recovery meets at the Family Life Center in Cassville every Tuesday at 6 p.m. Meeting at the same time is Celebration Station for children. This is for anyone with hurts, habit or hang-ups. Golden: Celebrate Recovery meets at 7 p.m. at the Golden Baptist Church on Route J in Golden every Monday of each month. Dinner is served at 6:15 p.m. This is for anyone with hurts, habit or hang-ups. Monett: Celebrate Recovery meets at New Site Baptist Church, 1925 Farm Rd 1060 in Monett, on Thursdays. Doors open at 6. Childcare provided. The Landing, a Celebrate Recovery group for teens, meets at the same time and site. Purdy: Celebrate Recovery meets at First Baptist Church, 301 Washington St. in Purdy, at 10 a.m. on Mondays. Seligman: Celebrate Recovery meets at MOZark Fellowship, 28277 Frisco Street, every Wednesday. Food is served at 6 p.m., and the meeting begins at 7 p.m.

Diabetes Support Group

Aurora: The Aurora Diabetes Support Group meets the third Wednesday of each month at Mercy Hospital in Aurora in the private dining room at 4-5 p.m. It is free and open to the public. Note: There is no meeting in December.

Grief Care Support

Marionville: Grief Care Support, sponsored community support by Integrity Hospice, is held the last Thursday of every month at 10 a.m. in Marionville at Methodist Manor, 205 South College Ave. in the Alice Lounge. Care group is for anyone experiencing grief through loss. Monett: The Grief Support Group meets the first and third Tuesday of each month at Oak Pointe of Monett, 1011 Old Airport Road from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. For more information, call Kathy at 417-235-3500.

Bounty from the Master’s Table: Author pens life challenges to inspire


espite enduring some very difficult challenges throughout her life, Cassville Walmart cashier and ordained minister Rachel Moore is experiencing bounty. She is living proof that difficult circumstances can not only be overcome, but that one can still thrive and find happiness and purpose in the midst of them. Her story of survival and endurance, when the odds were against her, will speak to and inspire anyone who reads the stories in her 72-page book, Bounty from the Master’s Table. After enduring many frightening physical battles, including one in which she nearly died, friends from a writing circle she attended encouraged her to ‘tell’ her story. The book, published in November 2017, is a compilation of several short stories about her life experiences. “I prayed about it and felt like the Lord wanted me to write it and it developed from there,” she said. “Every story in the book is absolutely true. I

Story and photo by Julia Kilmer

love every minute I can spend writing. That’s my time of peace.” Moore utilizes imagery in her writing that makes the reader feel like they are in the scene. “My goal was to make people feel like they were there, too, and that they would learn from the lessons I learned.” In one chapter of her book, Moore describes how she was paralyzed when she was only 4 years old. “I got up and couldn’t walk,” she describes. “I hit the floor and was screaming because my legs were hurting so bad. Mom took me to the pediatrician, who found a tick and bug in my ear. It had attacked the muscles and tissues in my leg. My legs were bent backward. Through the years, I’ve had physical therapy to help keep my feet straight.” Later in life, she began falling a lot. “I went to a specialist in March of 2005, who found a tumor between my brain and inner ear. “After two weeks, a second MRI was performed. But, this time, the tumor was not there The nurse said, ‘I can’t figure out where it went.’”

Moore recalls a vision she believes came straight from the Lord. “He was holding something in his hand... it was this awful, ugly creature, and I believe it was that tumor and He was throwing it back at the devil.” Moore has worked as a cashier at the Cassville Walmart for 13 years, and takes care of her 19-year-old niece. In 2014, she decided to become an ordained minister. “I felt like that was the calling of the Lord on my life,” she said. “I love to preach and sing in church. I didn’t want to just sit on a pew and be a benchwarmer. I wanted to be active and minister.” In July 2011, she almost died. “I started feeling sick at work and went home,” she said. “I was very nauseous and was running a high fever.” The next morning, she was taken to the hospital. “When we arrived, a new doctor had just came on shift, who did a CAT scan and saw that my stomach had separated from my esophagus, and was in my chest, crushing my heart.” Connection Magazine | 53

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She had developed a hernia in her esophagus, which had burst, and was told she needed to have emergency surgery that night. Moore woke up several days later on life support, was in the hospital for six days and had a feeding tube for three months, but recovered. The hernia may have been related to a surgery she had several years earlier due to severe acid reflux. “They had stretched my esophagus, and sewed my stomach to my esophagus,” she said. “The doctor said I shouldn’t have lived, and they don’t know how I did.” But she knows. It was a miracle. Today, she still grapples with health issues, but her faith and positive attitude shine bright. “I go to work and just try to do my best to pay bills, keep going, live for the Lord,” she said. “God took me through all that, so I guess He’s got a purpose for me. He isn’t done with me. More than anything, I want to touch lives, and encourage people, that if God didn’t abandon me after all I’ve been through, He won’t abandon them either.” Instead of being angry with her circumstances, Moore shared this advice: “Stop and let God show you the purpose in your circumstances. Pray and know there’s a reason, and that it’s going to come out positive. Sometimes, you just have to stop focusing on them and keep moving ahead. But the main thing is, don’t give up, because that’s when you lose.” Moore’s book can be purchased at the Cassville, Eagle Rock and Monett Library Branches, or by texting an inquiry and mailing address to 417-665-9152. Cost is $7. Moore thanks editor Barbara Warren, Paula Harris, and friends from the MidSouth Writers Group for their assistance and support in writing the book. For more information about attending the group, call Susan Eschbach at 417-847-3628. For more information about ministry opportunities, Moore can be reached at the number above. 

Planting guide offers tips for successful harvest The Extension planting calendar recommended the following dates for these local crops:


s the chill of winter declines, gardeners can feel the itch to pull the hoes and spades out of storage and get their fingers back into the soil. The urge to till and plant and turn the barren soil back into lush greenery and a bountiful harvest warms the restless heart. Sometimes, however, eagerness and cool spring mornings can spark more desire than Mother Nature’s plan will support. Plants have their own cycle, as Tim Schnackenberg, horticulturalist for the University of Missouri Extension Service, is quick to point out. “This is the time of year when the garden catalogs start showing up in mail boxes and spring gardening fever begins to set in,” Schnackenberg said. “I suggest that now is the time to be soil testing their garden soils to determine what the fertility requirements are for the season. A soil test recommendation from the local University of Missouri Extension Center will provide specific recommendations for any needed limestone for a pH adjustment and nitrogen, phosphate or potash needs for the garden.” The soil test is a simple process.

Column by Murray Bishoff

Asparagus - April 5-25 Snap and pole beans - May 10-20 Wax and bush beans - April 25-May 30; July 25-Aug. 5 Beets - April 1-15; July 25-Aug. 1 Broccoli - March 25-April 5; July 25-30 Brussell sprouts - March 25-April 5; July 20-30 Cabbage - April 1-20; July 20-30 Carrots - March 25-April 10; July 20-30 Cauliflower - April 1-20; July 20-30 Chinese cabbage - April 1-20 Collards - March 20-April 10 Sweet corn - May 1-July 20 Cucumbers - May 10-30 Pickles - May 10-30 Eggplant - May 15-25 Endive - April 1-15 Kale - March 25-April 5

Loose leaf lettuce - April 1-May 15 or Aug. 1-15 Head lettuce - March 25-April 5 Romaine lettuce - April 1-20 Mustard - March 25-May 1; Aug. 1-30 Okra - May 10-25 Onions - March 25-April 15 Parsley - April 10-20 English shell or snap peas - March 25-April 10 Sweet bell peppers or hot peppers - May 15-30 Red or Russet potatoes - April 1-15 Pumpkins - May 20-30 Radishes - March 25-May 1; Aug. 1-20 Spinach - April 1-20; July 20-Aug. 10 Zucchini - May 15-30 Summer or winter squash - May 15-30 Sweet potatoes - May 15-June 5 Turnips - March 25-May 1

Schnackenberg recommends submitting a garden sample from a depth of six to eight inches, either a soil probe from a small shovel or auger. He advised taking in 10 to 15 samples from different places, mixing the samples together and taking around a pint of soil to the local Extension office in either Mt. Vernon or Cassville. From there the sample goes to the lab where an Extension specialist will analyze it and provide results in about 10 days. “If the soil is lacking organic matter or hasn’t been productive in the past, perhaps it is time to add compost or animal manure to the existing soil to improve the soil health and productivity,” Schnackenberg said. “Compost

can be purchased in bags or in bulk from a commercial supplier or from some municipalities with yard waste composting facilities. Animal manure can also be purchased in bags or in bulk from farms and ranches.” Once the soil is ready, Schnackenberg said the decision to plant depends on the crop. “Vegetables can be planted as early as March 1 most years in southern Missouri,” he continued. “Some will start earlier assuming some risk of bad weather. Others will start their plants indoors and have them ready to plant in the ground at a later date. Some of the earliest vegetables that can be planted include snap peas, leaf lettuce,


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Connection Magazine | 55

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56 | April 2018

radishes, onions, kale, Irish potatoes, spinach, swiss chard, carrots, cabbage, cauliflower, broccoli and beets. Follow directions on how to plant from the seed seller or from a reputable gardening or Extension publication. Some of the vegetables can be set out as plants such as onions, cabbage and cauliflower. Others are direct seeded.” He advised against planting the entire garden at once. Dates vary, depending on the crop. Gardeners frequently go to retailers, buy all their plants and end up putting them in the ground too early. Tomatoes, for example, are available at stores in early April, but do not need to be in the ground until May. Putting them out too early could subject them to excessive cold, causing them not to grow or become sick. He also cautioned against some classic gardening mistakes. “Sometimes gardeners will put on too much animal manure,” Schnackenberg said. “That will make the soil too rich. Plants will end up growing a lot of vines and not a lot of fruit. Tomatoes need some stress to produce. “Planting dates can vary from March 1 to May 15 depending on the species and some can be planted again in the autumn. Remember, just because a retailer has plants for sale right now doesn’t mean they need to go in the ground now. Many times, many weeks need to pass before they will thrive and do well. We don’t want to plant a crop that will be struggling in cold weather. Those plants are susceptible to disease and other problems and will not be productive. Most gardeners who plant many species will plant in succession throughout the spring and some even double-crop once the early crop is harvested. Later crops that need warmer temperatures will include tomatoes.”


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Connection Magazine | 57

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to produce a crop, while rhubarb can take two years. Fruit crops run on a slightly different timetable. Information on planting is available on them as well. Generally, gardeners can plant strawberries in the fall or the spring, preferably early in the spring. “You may not get full production from strawberries in the first year,” Schnackenberg said. “We have a guide sheet online on strawberry planting (G6135).” Blueberries and blackberries are particularly popular due to the high production available from a small number of plants. Blueberries can be planted any time during the spring and begin producing rather quickly. “I put three in last spring and they were producing by June,” Schnackenberg said. “For blueberries, the soil needs to be acidic. You’re better

off to adjust the soil downward well before putting in the plants. Sulphur is normally used to get the soil to the point where it will produce. Putting sulphur in when you plant takes too long for the plant to adjust. A lot of local soil is acidic.” For more intense fruit gardening, cantalopes and watermelon are due for planting from May 10-20. Trees, such as apples, may take several years to produce. Pawpaws are generally at least a year old for seedlings to be sold from nurseries, and the grafted variety may be three or four years old. Fruit production on these are not guaranteed. Schnackenberg added that raised beds for gardens have become quite popular and are very useful. “I never thought I would use them, but I tried them and I like it,” he added.


Horticulturalists have classified planting regions in the bi-county area the same as those in northern Missouri, north of Kansas City across the state. This pushes planting season back, unlike counties east of Stone County, especially those clustered around the Bootheel, which is considered more similar to southern states. Schnackenberg recommended downloading the Extension’s Vegetable Planting Calendar, publication No. G6201, copies of which are also available from Extension offices. The guide recommends distances between plantings, the number of seeds per 100 foot rows, the distance between plants and seed depths. It also estimates days from planting to harvest, which can vary from as little as 35 for leaf lettuce or up to 150 days for sweet potatoes. Perennial vegetables such as asparagus can take three years


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Connection Magazine | 59

Local woman uses

Snail Mail ministry

to encourage people

60 | April 2018

Snail Mail card ministry creator Leah Moss uses another medium besides cards to encourage others — rocks. In this photo, Moss had a trunk load of rocks she thoughtfully painted with encouraging words and images ready to hide in the community.

A Leah Moss personally illustrates cards as part of her Snail Mail card ministry, often sending them anonymously, to brighten peoples’ day who need encouragement.

Cassville resident is not using texting, twitter, Facebook, Snapchat, email or other forms of social media to connect with others, like mainstream society, but the U.S. Mail to make a difference in peoples’ lives. For the last seven years, Leah Moss uses what she calls her Snail Mail Card Ministry to brighten peoples’ days. “It really touches people,” she said. “I’m getting so much enjoyment out of sending these cards. I feel like the Holy Spirit works through me. He does it, not me.” The cards are elaborately illustrated with creative drawings and pictures, which clearly take time and effort to make. And who are the lucky recipients of her special cards? Anyone who needs them.

Story and photos by Julia Kilmer

“I’ll ask people, ‘Do you know anybody I can send a card to who needs cheering up?’ said Moss. “That’s the best part, because [the recipient] doesn’t even know who I am, and I don’t even know what’s going on [with their circumstances]. I’ll just do a letter and leave it at the nurse’s desk, or wherever it’s needed.” It takes Moss, who doesn’t consider herself to be an artistic person, about two hours to complete one card. “I do them in stages,” said Moss, who is from Guam. “I’ll write the inside of them; that will be one stage, and then I’ll come back and decorate them. I’m really not a good drawer, I’m a good copier, and I’ll find stuff I like and copy it. Believe it or not, I have no imagination. I do my usual waves, coconut trees, surfboards, clouds and birds inspired from growing up in Guam.”

Connection Magazine | 61

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62 | April 2018

I just have to put a smile on someone’s face

She creates the special cards whenever there is a need. “It’s when someone needs cheering up, or they’re sick, or the Lord has laid them on my heart,” she said. “Or, other people say, ‘Hey, can you send this person a card to cheer them up?’” Her inspiration came from her time at the Cassville Habitat ReStore as a volunteer. “Cards came in and they were all blank, so there was so much space, I’d write all this stuff on the left side, then doodle on the right. Then we got cards in that had words in them, but I was already wanting to doodle, so that’s how I got started.” She buys the art supplies, materials and stamps herself, but a friend got her started. “In the beginning, Betty Jo Stubblefield gave me the stamps, and it was a good five years, and she’d give me a book of stamps every month, sometimes two, so if it wasn’t for her giving me stamps, I would not have been able to do the ministry.”


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Leah Moss personally illustrates cards as part of her Snail Mail card ministry, often sending them anonymously, to brighten peoples’ day who need encouragement.

Mandy Hamblett, First Baptist Church secretary, said Moss’ cards inspire and uplift people in a way social media can’t. “The only thing you get in snail mail anymore are bills and junk mail, so to get a personal card like that, and one that takes time, is a real blessing,” Hamblett said. “The Apostle Paul tells us to encourage each other in 1 Thessalonians 5:11, and to not give up, and I believe her ministry is one way to do that and she’s being obedient to do it. The Lord tells her what to do, and she does it.” “I just have to put a smile on someone’s face,” Moss said. “When someone gets a card, they’re like, ‘Somebody cares; somebody’s thinking of me.’” The ministry helps Moss, too. “It’s a stress reliever for me,” she said. Moss is also now sending cards in Messenger, too, and painting and hiding rocks with inspirational sayings and images. “I’ve sent about 100 digital cards so far, so now I’ve started the digital card ministry, too.” 

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Connection Magazine | 63

Familiar Faces The Monett Chamber of Commerce held its

annual membership meeting

on March 8 at the Scott Reginal Technology Center in Monett.











5 1. Brian Thornton, Amanda Thornton, Taryn Orwig, Bryan Orwig 2. Larry and Roxann Watkins 3. Glenna Kraft, Ann Saunders, Agnes Bruner 4. Brenda McCracken, Jennifer Prine 5. Yvonne Bilyeu, Jackie Barger, Robin Walker 6. Darrin and Kim Newbold 7. Samantha Hull, Tiffany Peetz 8. Frank and Linda Peterson 9. Sherri and James Asher 10. Therese and Victor Marchlewski 11. Gary VanNote, Tara Sartin, Martha and Jim Randall 12. Mike and Denise Moon

64 | April 2018





5 3






St. Lawrence Catholic School in Monett hosted its annual

11 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6.

Derek and Millie Tudor Richard and Kaitlin Hurt Sofia and Erika Patino Kylene and Jason Williams Jake and Kennedi Elrod Jared and Emma White


Daddy-Daughter Dance on March 3

in the school’s family life center.

7. Annalise and Jacob Sullivan 8. Jason and Emri Sperandio 9. Jay Apostol, Joe Crowell 10. Hayden and Steven Schmidt 11. Jayci, Jason and Kailyn Fletcher 12. Garrett and Evie Clark

Connection Magazine | 65

Parting Shot Photo by Tracie Snodgrass

“Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that.� - Martin Luther King Jr., A Testament of Hope: The Essential Writings and Speeches

66 | April 2018

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Connection Magazine | 67

Connection April 2018  
Connection April 2018