Show Me the Ozarks - May 2023

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Featuring Joplin & Northeast Oklahoma Healthcare Professionals I Ask the Expert I Women in Business 21ST Annual 4-States Baby Contest winner Carter May 2023 • Volume 22 • Issue 9
May 2023 • • 1 Discover Welcome to La Boussole The Best Version of You La Boussole Medical Spa & Wellness Center is a physician-directed tranquil Day Spa destination for excellence in Health, Wellness, Aesthetic Medicine, and Anti-Aging treatments. We offer the latest advancements in Med Spa Services: Acupuncture IV Therapy Weight Management Botox, Dermal Fillers, and PRP Injections Body Sculpting and Contouring Massage Therapy Laser Therapies Skin Resurfacing Facials & Peels Waxing Lashes Brows And more... 5594 W. Junge Blvd. Joplin, MO 64804 | Free Consultations 417.434.4449
May 2023 • • 3 ON BALANCES UP TO $15,000 WHEN YOU... 1APY = Annual Percentage Yield. Rate effective April 10, 2023. Fees may reduce earnings. Limited to one account per individual. Rate subject to change. 2Excludes ATM transactions; debit minimum $2.00. 12 transactions must be posted to your account per statement cycle. 3 Have one (1) direct deposit of at least $200.00 per statement cycle. ✓ Use your Mastercard® Debit Card 12 times per statement cycle.2 ✓ Sign up for eStatements ✓ Elect Direct Deposit3 1-888-780-8391 |

With bright blue eyes and curls galore, 22-month-old Carter is our first-place winner. This happy boy loves animals, especially baa-baa black sheep. Carter and our other contestants help support our local Children’s Miracle Network hospital through their entry fees. Check out all the sweet smiles from the cutest babies in the Four-State Area.

features SMTO
Featuring Joplin 30 ‘Orchid of the Ozarks’ Celebrating the Iris, Joplin’s city flower 32 Rotary Sculpture Garden full of life at Mercy Park 36 Joplin Memorial Run Looks to the Future While Remembering Lives Lost 38 Joplin Floor Designs Celebrating 30 Years 40 Courtney’s Candles & Creations
Helping Adult Learners Build Skills is Primary Focus of Joplin NALA 44 Joplin Business Spotlights 46 Faces of Joplin 2023 48 FosterAdoptConnect Laser-focused on Being a Difference-maker for Families 50 Slumber Soiree Featuring Northeast Oklahoma 27 Oklahoma Business Spotlights 28 6th Annual Toes in the Grand Festival About the Cover 30 52 52 58 36

in every edition


11 Farmers markets are in full swing this month, so stop by your local market to get all kinds of fresh produce. Learn about wildflowers and how to identify them or fill your yard with native plants you bought at a local plant sale. Make a handmade gift for Mother’s Day or celebrate May Day with a traditional may pole celebration. May in the Four-State Area is full of fun activities the entire family will enjoy!

14 Cultural Arts and Entertainment

26 Northeast Oklahoma Events


21 Tastes of the Four States - Red Onion

22 Show Me Dining Guide

68 Your House ... Your HomeGardening for Your Patio, Yard or Greenhouse

84 The Great Outdoors - A Man Called Fish

86 A Naturalist Voice - The Rite of Passage: Holding a Crawdad!

Can you find it?

Find the GREEN smiley face on one of our pages. Email sue@ with the page number and spot where you found it. Submit your entry by the 15th of the month. A winner will be drawn from all the correct entries and will receive a gift certificate from an area retailer. One entry per household please. Good luck!

May 2023 • • 5
health other
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Address: Form of payment: Check Credit Card Card Number: Name on Card: Card Expiration: / Mail this form with your check, money order or credit card info to: Show Me The Ozarks, PO Box 950, Neosho, MO 64850 Subscription Form Subscribe today! Call 417.455.9898 to place your subscription over the phone by credit card. Don’t miss a single edition of the magazine that has all of the region talking! The Ozarks Magazine Since 2001 58 Recipe: Mom’s Favorite Breakfast Casserole 74 Health Professionals 76 Why I Run: Serious illness shows Terra Oxendine benefits of movement 78 Health Events 80 Know the Signs of Stroke & What To Do 81 The Miracle of Healing 82 Fit For Life: Avocados 88 Ascent’s Program Manager Carl Perkins Loses Battle with Cancer 16 Kicking Off a Summer Schedule of Musical Events at the Cornell Complex 18 Show Me Carl Junction 19 Spotlight on Carthage 20 Joplin Arts District 59 Fashion Forward - Blue Moon Boutique 60 Things We Love 62 Ask The Expert 70 The Creative Edge - Barbara Hicklin: Practice pays off for artist 72 Women in Business
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Congratulations to Rhonda Overstreet, the winner of the April edition “Find the Green Smiley Face” contest. Rhonda wins two gift certificates to McAlister’s Deli in Joplin, Missouri. The Green Smiley was on page 37 in the photo with the eagle on the mural.

The Ozarks Magazine Since 2001



Lee Radcliff


Sue Dillmon


Wendy Brunner

Kathleen Swift


Kelley Talent

Kristi Tucker


Cheryl Franklin


Jamie Emery


Holly Hukill

Jeff Cantrell

Kathleen Swift

Don Lowe

Larry Whiteley

Bridget Bauer

Amy Howe

Ann Leach

Allison Lee Riechman-Bennett

Kristi Spencer


Amy Howe

Mandy Edmonson

Ashley Caughorn


Shelby Cagle / Gary and Desma Sisco

Show Me The Ozarks Magazine is published monthly by Show Me Communications, PO Box 3325, Joplin, MO 64803. Copyright 2022 all rights reserved. Reproduction of this magazine, in part or in whole, is prohibited without written permission from SMTO. Subscription rates: $19.99 for one year, $32.99 for two years, $41.99 for three years. Advertising rates sent on request. Unsolicited manuscripts, photographs, and art will not be returned unless accompanied by self-addressed envelope with sufficient postage.

NOTE: Information published herein is subject to change without notice. Reproduction in whole or in part is strictly prohibited by law. SMTO makes every effort to ensure the accuracy of published information, however the publisher cannot be held responsible for any consequences arising from errors or omissions. SMTO does not take responsibility for, or always endorse the opinions of contributors or advertisers. SMTO reserves the right to not run an ad or article that is reviewed to be in bad taste or goes against the focus or mission of that of Show Me The Ozarks Magazine. Editor photo by Hannah Sanderson Photography.

May 2023 • • 7 Thank you, healthcare heroes! Build, protect and manage wealth. What would you like to achieve with your wealth? Put our experience to work for your goals. Investment and Insurance Products are: Not a Deposit | Not FDIC Insured | Not Insured by Any Federal Government Agency | Not Bank Guaranteed | May Lose Value To learn more, contact Sarah Frossard: Sarah Frossard Sr. Private Wealth Strategist 417-875-5207 NEWTONSJOPLIN.COM 428 S Main St. | Joplin, MO | 417.623.2800 everySparkleday.

Want to Go?

It is time to get out there and enjoy our region. You have all you need: beautiful weather, lots of options and all the information in this issue to enjoy the summer. We have the best concerts, community events and scenery in our backyard.

The Cornell Complex kicks off summer activities with two musical events, Me Like Bees and The Okee Dokee Brothers. The Harry M. Cornell Arts and Entertainment Complex will showcase their outdoor space, known as the Leggett & Platt Green, during these performances. Turn to page 16 to learn why these concerts are a mustsee this summer!

Who would want to miss four days packed with wide-ranging entertainment? Turn to page 28 to find when you can put your Toes in the Grand in June. This Sixth Annual Toes in the Grand festival recognizes Grove as the perfect summertime destination with four days of live music, water activities and events for the whole family to enjoy.

A walk in the park? Built four years ago, the Rotary Sculpture Garden has become a must-go-to destination in Joplin. The garden is beautifully landscaped with more than 170 sculptures on permanent display inside Mercy Park. It is the perfect place to enjoy the works of art and a nice walk. For a sneak peek, see page 32.

Honor, respect and health. You can find all three at the 12th Annual Joplin Memorial Run. This event honors the 161 victims from the 2011 Joplin tornado, respects Joplin’s resilience in overcoming the destruction of 8,000 structures and gives you a time to come together as community to support your health. Page 36 tells you all the information you need to know to participate.

Throwing a party? Slumber Soiree has taken the stress out of party planning. They offer a hassle-free, unforgettable sleepover experience for your child and guests. You pick the theme, provide the space, and your child’s party will be the talk of the town. Turn to page 50 to see how you can host an unforgettable, Pinterest-worthy event in your own home, without lifting a finger!

Not only is this issue packed with these events and more, our 21st Annual Four-State Baby Contest winner graces the cover. Not only are we fun in the Four States, we have the most beautiful babies. All of our entries can be found starting on page 52. Thank you to all who entered! We love seeing the beautiful faces and supporting the Children’s Miracle Network.

We want to go! Let’s have so much fun this summer!

8 Weatherize your home by sealing air leaks around windows, doors and vents. Invest in smart tools like smart thermostats and smart appliances. Look for the ENERGY STAR® label.
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P.O. Box 3325 • Joplin, MO 64803 417.455.9898 • 417.850.5557
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May 2023 • • 9
10 Stifel, Nicolaus & Company, Incorporated Member SIPC & NYSE | Brad R. McIntyre Vice President/Investments (417) 627-5715 | Debbie Koehler Client Service Associate (417) 627-5716 | Josh DeTar Financial Advisor Associate (417) 627-5719 | Stifel is pleased to announce the formation of the M/D Wealth Management Group The M/D Wealth Management Group is located in Joplin, Missouri, and is excited to help you create a customized wealth management plan that aligns with your vast goals and needs. (417) 627-5716 main | (417) 781-9847 fax 420 S. Main Street | Joplin, Missouri 64801 M/D Wealth Management Group

What’s Happening Calendar of Events SMTO

in the Ozarks

If you have an event you would like to see listed in the Calendar of Events, please email your request to: Events are printed on a space available basis and must be received by the 5th of the month prior to the month of the scheduled event.

Support Your Local Farmer’s Market!

Grove, OK: Starting May 6: Saturdays 9 a.m.-2 p.m., downtown.

Pittsburg, KS: Saturdays 8 a.m.-12 p.m. Saturdays, 11th and Broadway streets, downtown Pittsburg. 620.231.8310.

Carthage, MO: Wednesdays and Saturdays from 8 a.m.-1 p.m. North side of the historic Carthage square. attraction/carthage-farmers-market.

Lamar, MO: Saturdays, 8:30 a.m.-12 p.m. Saturdays, Moore Pavilion, 10th & Poplar. 417.682.3579.

Joplin, MO: Every Saturday, 10 a.m.-2 p.m., Empire Market, 931 E. 4th Street.

Monett, MO: Starting May 16, 8 a.m.-12 p.m. Saturdays; Tuesdays TBD. South Park by the YMCA parking lot.

Neosho, MO: 9 a.m.-12 p.m. Saturdays, starting May 7, directly across from the library downtown.

Webb City, MO: Tuesdays 4-7 p.m., Thursdays 11 a.m.-2 p.m., and Saturdays 9 a.m.-12 p.m. Pavilion at the Main Street entrance to King Jack Park.

Pittsburg, KS

Wednesdays: Trivia Night, 7 p.m., Drop the H Brewing Company, 107 E. Rose St.

Thursdays: Thursday Night Line Dance Lessons, 7-9 p.m., Dirty Mule Restaurant Bar & Event Center, 134 S. US 69.

First Friday of the Month: Heavy metal bands, live music, 9 p.m., Dirty Mule Restaurant Bar & Event Center, 134 S. US 69.

Second Friday of the Month: Drag Shows, 10 p.m., Dirty Mule Restaurant Bar & Event Center, 134 S. US 69.

Last Friday of the Month: College Night w/ DJ A Baby, 8 p.m.-2 a.m. Free admission with college ID. Dirty Mule Restaurant Bar & Event Center, 134 S. US 69.

ArtForms Gallery Workshops, 620 N. Broadway, Pittsburg, KS. 620.240.0165. Check our Facebook page during the month as artists may offer popups.

Every Tuesday: Art Exploration/Weekly Beginning Painting, 12:302:30 p.m. Free. Explore different art techniques. Feel free to bring something you are working on.

May 20: Neurographic Art, 2-4 p.m. This class helps you work through different areas of life that you may want to change or are struggling in. Neurographic art helps form new neural paths in the brain. When you are finished with the process, you can use markers, crayons or pencils to color the areas. You are then left with your own unique piece of art. $30. Class limit: 10; ages: 18 and older.

May 26, 30, 31 & June 1: 7th Annual Young Artist Camp 2023! Ages and times: Ages 6-9, 9-10 a.m.; ages 10-12, 11 a.m.-12:30 p.m.; ages 13-18, 1:30-3 p.m. We are excited to offer an “Art for the Body” theme workshop for our young creatives. Questions?

$60 per student, class size: 12.

May 2023 • • 11

May 30, 31 & June 1: For the Adults: Hoops and Pearls, 4-6 p.m. Join Nicole Meyer-Foresman and Kristin Girard for an adult jewelry workshop series. Learn pearl knotting, metal forging and soldering when you make a modern pearl necklace and hoop earrings. $90. Class size: 8, ages 18+.

Carl Junction Community Center: 303 N. Main St., 417.649.7237

Monday, Wednesday & Friday Pickleball 6-10 p.m., Tuesday & Thursday 1-3 p.m., and Sunday 1-6 p.m. Tuesday Yoga 6 p.m.

May 6: Carl Junction Lions Breakfast, 8-11 a.m., CJ Community Center. Cost: Adults $6; children under 6 years, $3. Call 417.439.7724.

Carthage, MO

May 6: All-You-Can-Eat Breakfast, 9-11 a.m., Carthage Shrine Club. Public welcome. $7 per person. Call 417.317.0609.

Diamond, MO - George Washington Carver National Monument Visitor Center Free Programs. Two miles west of Diamond on Highway V, then 1/4 mile south on Carver Road. Visitor center and park grounds open daily 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Call 417.325.4151 or visit www.nps. gov/gwca. *Programs will be presented outside on the park grounds.

May 6 & 7: Women in George Washington Carver’s Life, 1 p.m. Throughout George Washington Carver’s life, many women mentored and guided him along his journey to earn an education. Often maternal figures and spiritual mentors, they encouraged him to succeed.

May 14: Inspiring Success: Mariah Watkins, 1 p.m. Mariah Watkins’ influence on George Washington Carver during his stay in her Neosho, Missouri, home strengthened his self-esteem, nurtured his faith in God and encouraged him to pursue his education.

May 20 & 21: History of the Carver Family Cemetery, 1 p.m. Join a park ranger at the Carver Family Cemetery to discover the history of the people buried there. Explore the cemetery and learn about some of the early residents of Diamond Grove.

May 27: Historic Neosho Schoolhouse, 11:30 a.m. Held at 639 Young Street in Neosho, Missouri, join a park ranger where George Washington Carver first attended school and learn about his struggles for education.

May 28: Historic Neosho Schoolhouse, 1 p.m. Stop by the visitor center and learn about the historic 1872 Neosho Colored School and the neighborhood that supported the education of hundreds of African American children, including George Washington Carver. Joplin, MO

Saturdays: Joplin Empire Market, 10 a.m.-2 p.m., 931 E. 4th St. The Joplin Empire Market is the place to find the best in locally grown produce, gourmet foodstuffs and handmade artisan goods. Curbside ordering also available, and orders may be placed Tuesday at 8 p.m., until Thursday at 8 p.m., at Curbside pickup hours are Saturday 10:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. More information:

May 5: The Woman’s Club of Joplin Club Day, noon, Twin Hills Golf and Country Club. Lunch

Followed by our annual Kentucky Derby Day celebration, so wear your fancy hat (or not) and enjoy lunch followed by Derby-themed games. For more information or to make reservations, call or text 417.483.6336.

May 7: 2nd Annual Cars & Crafts Event, 11 a.m.-6 p.m., Landreth Park. Fun for the whole family: a car show, craft booths, children’s activities and bands. The featured events will be a cornhole tournament and a Blackstone grill-off. For more information: or call 417.622.2850,

Shoal Creek Conservation Education Center, 201 West Riviera Drive, Joplin, MO. The Shoal Creek Conservation Education Center is your local connection to Missouri’s fish, forests, and wildlife. Check out the native plant landscaping, exhibits or hike the trails. Purchase a fishing or hunting permit, attend a nature program or watch for wildlife along the trails and banks of Shoal Creek. Enjoy a variety of free public programs throughout the year. Education Center is open Tuesday-Friday 9 a.m.-5 p.m., and Saturday 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Closed Sunday, Monday and most state holidays. Call 417.629.3434, email or visit for upcoming events. The parking lot, grounds and trail are open seven days a week from sunrise to sunset.

May 5: Ozark Chinquapin and Conservation Efforts, 6-7:30 p.m. Registration required. Ages 12 and up. The Ozark Chinquapin was a major player in our Ozarks forests; often it was the dominant tree species on many ridgetops and rocky slopes. The decline of the species had major effects on local wildlife food webs and traditional cultural uses. The Ozark Chinquapin Foundation, area foresters and local naturalists have been dedicated for almost 15 years in saving this species. This classroom program will look at this unique tree’s place in our local ecology and highlight the foundation’s research and outreach.

May 6: Forager’s Tea Party, 10 a.m.-12 p.m. Registration required. Ages: 10 and up. While learning the tips and tricks of foraging, enjoy a taste of the wild plants and seeds Missouri has to offer as tea and other treats. This program will contain food with tree nuts, dairy and gluten.

May 12: Little Acorns: Wild Babies, 10:30 a.m.-11 a.m. Registration required. Recommended for ages 3 to 7. Spring is a time of growth and new life. Learn with your little ones about the wild babies in Missouri this time of year and complete a craft to take home.

May 13: Wonderful Wildflower Webinar, 10:30 a.m.-12 p.m. Registration required. Ages: 12 and up. Let’s explore the beauty and uniqueness of native wildflowers. Join Shoal Creek Conservation Education Center naturalists to learn how to identify spring wildflowers and which ones you may see in your own backyard.

May 16: Conservation in the Parks: Butterflies and Their Babies, 10:30 a.m.-11:30 a.m., Cunningham Park. Registration required. Ages: 5 and up. Learn about butterflies and caterpillars through our partnership in the parks program with Wildcat Glade Friends Group, Joplin Parks and Recreation and the Missouri Department of Conservation. We will explore which native plants at Cunningham Park give food to butterflies and homes to caterpillars.

May 23: Nature Journaling, 6:30-8 p.m. Registration required. Ages: 12 and up. Nature journaling is an expressive and creative way for people of all skill levels to learn about and appreciate nature. Join an MDC naturalist to talk about different methods of keeping a nature journal and participate in some activities to get your creative juices flowing. A drawing will be held for an MDC nature journal and coloring pencils.

May 27: Spring Native Plant Sale, 10 a.m.-1 p.m. Drop by during this free event to purchase native plants for your landscaping needs. Vendors will offer hardy plants native to Missouri and will provide information about the benefits of planting native species. Or pre-order the native plants for your landscaping needs and they will be available for you to pick up. Please check with the MO Wildflower Nursery and Ozark Soul to see what’s available and to pre-purchase your native plants.

Webb City, MO

Saturdays: Webb City Farmers Market, 9 a.m.-noon. Farm-fresh produce, baked goods, herbs, jams, jellies, humanely raised meats and so much more. Information: 417.438.5833.

May 5: First Friday, 7-10 p.m., Just A Taste. Swing dance lessons, 7 p.m.; live jazz and dancing, 8-10 p.m.; band this month is JOMO Jazz. Feel free to try out your new moves and/or kick back and relax to some


tunes and cocktails. Adult: $8 in advance, $10 at the door; student: $5. Call 417.673.1154.

Wildcat Glades Friends Group, 201 Riviera Dr., Joplin, Missouri. All programs are free of charge, but registration is requested. To register, please email or visit our Facebook page for online registration options. Classes are limited to the first 20 students registered for preschool and yoga classes.

May 4: Natural Gifts for Mother’s Day, 6-8 p.m. Free. Ages 7 and up. There is no better gift than a handmade one, and this class will focus on creating natural gifts you can give to the mom in your life! This class will have limited spaces and will fill quickly, so reserve your spot today! Sign up by visiting or by emailing

May 6: May Day Celebration, 1-3 p.m. Free to attend. All ages welcome. Join us at Wildcat Park for an old-fashioned May Day celebration! We will have a may pole, old-fashion races, yard games and lots of fun! Bring a few dollars for treats and raffles with great prizes. No registration needed, just bring a picnic and your racing shoes.

May 12: Crawdads at the Creek, 6:30 p.m., Wildcat Park Pavilion. This is the second annual Crawdads at the Creek event held by Wildcat Glades. This event will feature a creekside crawdad dinner under a lit event tent. We will have live music, a dessert auction, yard games and fellowship with nature while you enjoy a delicious meal! Tickets are $35 a person or $60 per couple. A table can be purchased for $180, which seats six people. Drinks provided, and alcoholic beverages available for additional purchase. Tickets can be purchased by visiting CrawdadsAtTheCreek2023.

May 13: Yoga in Nature for Kids, 10:30 a.m., free. Ages 4 and up accompanied by an adult. Bring your yoga mat or a towel and a reusable water bottle. Must pre-register. Sign up by following the instructions on our Facebook page or email

May 17 & 20: Preschool Connections: Hector the Misunderstood Snake, May 17, 10-11 a.m., May 20, 1-2 p.m. Free. Ages 3-7. No one on the farm likes Hector the snake until he saves a baby chick! Snakes are incredible animals, and yet, they are probably one of the misunderstood of all in the animal kingdom. Join us to learn about the snakes we have in Missouri, and why they are a key species to have around. We will read a story, sing a song and complete a craft each child will take home. Children will also see our resident snakes in the cottage. You must pre-register, as space is limited. Please do so by visiting our Facebook page, going to WCPreschoolMay2023 or at

May 22: Adult Program: Toad Abode - Attracting Natural Insect Zappers, 6-8 p.m. Age 13+, $10/person. Free. Whether you find toads adorable or not-so-adorable, they are useful in your yard. Toads can eat up to 1,000 insects in a day. You will make your own toad abode (home) to attract these little insect-devourers to your own yard. Offering shelter for these small, but important, amphibians is just a small token of appreciation you can offer for their hard work. This class will have limited space, so be sure to sign up quickly. You can register by visiting AdultToadAbodes2023 or by emailing

May 24 & 27: Nature Explorers: Frog Friends and Toad Abodes, May 24, 10-11 a.m., and May 27, 1-2 p.m. Free. For ages 7-14, Frogs and toads are neat little critters that are more often seen than heard. For this Nature Explorers program, we will learn all about the frogs and toads of Missouri. Kids will gain a knowledge of some of the frog and toad calls we might hear in May and learn some visual identification skills. We will make toad houses families may take home to attract toads to their own back yards. You must pre-register by visiting our Facebook page, visiting WCNatureExplorersMay2023 or emailing maddie@wildcatglades. org.

May 2023 • • 13

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Carthage, MO

May 5-7 & 12-14: Drinking Habits, 6:30 p.m.; Sunday 1 p.m., Stone’s Throw Dinner Theatre, 2466 Old 66 Blvd. Accusations, mistaken identities and romances run wild in this traditional, laugh-out-loud farce. Reservations required; call 417.358.9665 or email stdinnertheatre@ Tickets: Adults $29, seniors (55+) $26, students $24, youth $23, children (6-12) $12, children (0-5) free. More information:

Through May 13: Rhythms & Threads by Clint and Mary Thornton, artCentral Carthage, 1110 E 13th St. An exciting, must-see exhibition of paintings and fiber works from artists Clint and Mary Thornton. Their compositions reflect their call and response to artistic conversations inspired by music that dances through the strokes of Clint’s brushes and the stitches of Mary’s needles. Free; donations appreciated. More information:, 417.358.4404.


April 7-May 13: Rhythms & Threads by Clint and Mary Thornton, artCentral Carthage, 1110 E. 13th St. Artists Clint and Mary Thornton’s compositions reflect their call and response to artistic conversations inspired by music that dances through the strokes of Clint’s brushes and the stitches of Mary’s needles. Free; donations appreciated. More information:, 417.358.4404.

Joplin, MO


May 1: Robert Jon & The Wreck House Concert (ages 13+), 7 p.m., The Coda Concert House, 2120 E. 24th St. Robert Jon & The Wreck (RJ&TW) are a double shot of Southern rock with a blues chaser. For reservations, email In response to reservations, a confirmation email with the address, directions, parking, etc., will be sent in return. All proceeds benefit the artist performing. Suggested minimum donation: $40. More information:

May 3-5: Bonnie and Clyde the Musical, 7:30 p.m., Dream Theatre Co., 124 S. Main St. Reservations required: General admission: $25. More information: becki_arnall@, 417.622.6470.

May 5: MSSU Choral Society Spring Concert, 3-4 p.m., First Community Church, 2007 E. 15th St. Celebrate springtime through song! Free; donations appreciated. More information:, 417.385.3996.

May 5: MOSO2000s presents Jesse McCartney, 5:30 p.m., Missouri Southern State University, Fred G. Hughes Stadium, 3950 E. Newman Rd. Features singer, songwriter, artist and actor Jesse McCartney. From musical theater and Disney Channel to the big screen and beyond, Jesse McCartney has built a catalog of instantly recognizable anthems. Tickets: Tickets: General admission $20, Ticket + Meet & Greet $60. More information:, 417.625.9346.

May 13: Me Like Bees, 7:30 p.m., Harry M. Cornell Arts & Entertainment Center, Leggett & Platt Green. 212 W. 7th St. Me Like Bees emerged on the music scene in 2013 with the release of their first full-length album. Tickets may be purchased at, 417.501.5550 or at the C2C box office inside the Cornell Complex (Tue-Sat, 1-5 p.m.). Tickets: $20. More information:

May 13 & 14: The Playground King. A brief children’s performance from Heartland Opera Theatre, performed on your local playground! Additional details, including times and locations, to come. More information:, 417.385.1454.

May 17-21: Funny Girl, 7:30 p.m.; Sunday 2:30 p.m., Joplin Little Theatre, 3009 W. 1st St. In the Ziegfeld Follies, in Hollywood films and on the radio, Fanny Brice was one of the most celebrated entertainers of her time. Reservations encouraged; reserve your ticket at joplinlittletheatre. org or by calling 417.623.3638. Tickets: Adults $18, senior citizens/ students $15. More information:

May 19, 20 & 21: The Pirates of Penzance, 7 p.m., Missouri Southern State University Bud Walton Black Box Theatre, 3950 E. Newman Rd. Heartland Opera Theatre proudly presents their production of Gilbert and Sullivan’s The Pirates of Penzance! Tickets available at eventbrite. com/e/the-pirates-of-penzance-tickets-611212963427. Cost: $10. More information:, 417.385.1454.


Through June 1: Iconic Joplin (ages 12-16). Joplin’s 150th birthday celebration, Iconic Joplin, challenges teams of teens to work together to research, design and build Joplin landmarks in their past, present or future states out of LEGO bricks! Teams were announced on December 1. Winners will be announced in June. Info:, 417.825.3395.

May 2: Tuesday Knight Chess (ages 11-18), 6-7:30 p.m., Joplin Public Library. Teens who want to up their chess game can sharpen skills and trade tips at Tuesday Knight Chess! Meet in the Teen Department of Joplin Public Library to practice games and strategizing. This activity is designed for teens in grades 6-12 with basic knowledge of and experience playing chess. Free. More information: bsnow@, 417.623.7953 x1027.

May 4: First Thursday ArtWalk, 5:30-8:30 p.m., downtown Joplin. Dozens of artists will show or demonstrate their artistic process and all art will be for sale. Map of participating locations is available at facebook. com/firstthursdayartwalkjoplin. Free. More information: lteeter00@gmail. com, 417.438.5931.

May 5: First Friday WineShare (ages 21+), 6-8 p.m., Hunter & Millard Architects, 1501 S. Main St. WineShare is a national event that takes place on the first Friday of each month. It’s a great opportunity to meet new friends or catch up with old ones. Bring friends or colleagues and a bottle of wine or a craft beer and join Downtown Joplin Alliance at Hunter & Millard Architects, Inc.! Open to ages 21 and up. Free. More information:, 928.514.7713.

May 5: St. Avips’ 61st Annual Ball, 7 p.m., Harry M. Cornell Arts & Entertainment Complex. For more than 60 years, the Friends of St. Avips, a local fundraising organization, have hosted an annual, sophisticated ball intended to support Spiva Center for the Arts. With an elegant Parisian theme and food, drinks and artwork, this year’s event promises to be just as thrilling as before, if not more. Interested in financially supporting this event? Or are you looking to donate your artwork for the ball’s auction? Visit for details.

May 6: Downtown Loft Tour, 2-6 p.m., downtown Joplin. Join Downtown Joplin Alliance for its inaugural 2023 Downtown Loft Tour, which showcases historic properties available to rent or buy in the downtown area. This open house-style tour will take you into some of downtown’s most fascinating properties—some fully furnished and occupied, others still in the process of renovation, and a few where restoration has yet to begin. Buildings on the tour include the Olivia Apartments, the Muir Building, the Independent Building and Pennington Lofts. Standard tickets grant entry to all eight properties on the tour and a guidebook. Separate tickets are also available for the VIP Twilight Rooftop Reception on the roof of the historic Columbian Building, where patrons can enjoy live music, signature cocktails and light snacks from 7-9: p.m. This is a rain or shine event—no refunds given. All proceeds benefit Downtown Joplin Alliance. Tickets available at Tickets: Standard ticket $25, additional VIP Twilight Rooftop Reception $75. More information:, 928.514.7713.


May 7, 14, 21 & 28: Open Mic Comedy Night, 9 p.m., Blackthorn Pizza & Pub. Join Joplin Comedy and try out your latest stand-up routine or take in the acts of local comedians. Age restrictions: 18+ until 10 p.m.; 21+ from 10 p.m. until close. Free., 417.540.9186.

May 11: Joplin Writers’ Guild, 6 p.m., Joplin Public Library, 1901 E. 20th St. Members have published novels, nonfiction books and articles. Dues $10 for the year, but anyone interested can attend their first meeting free. Info:, 417.691.0480.

May 11: Joplin Goes to the Movies: Captain Salvation, 7 p.m., Harry M. Cornell Arts & Entertainment Complex, Beshore Performance Hall. See a variety of films that feature events or actors with a connection to Joplin. In this drama of doubt, sin and redemption, a man forced to choose between his love of God and his love of the sea struggles with his faith only to learn grace from a fallen woman and combine his two passions as Captain Salvation. This silent film will be accompanied by live piano music, played by Bill Rowland. Introduction by Jill Halbach. This event is part of the Joplin sesquicentennial celebration. Free. More information:, 417.625.4789.

May 13: Iris Garden Tour, 10 am-2 p.m., Joplin History & Mineral Museum, 504 S. Schifferdecker Ave. In celebration of Joplin’s 150th birthday, the Joplin Celebrations Commission invites you to admire the beauty of Joplin’s official city flower, the iris, with a self-paced Iris Garden Tour. Beginning at the Joplin History & Mineral Museum, follow a map of various locations where irises can be viewed throughout the city. Participants are asked to be respectful of private property and refrain from picking flowers. This event is part of the Joplin sesquicentennial celebration. Free. More information:, 417.625.4789.

May 18: Third Thursday, 5:30-8:30 p.m., downtown Joplin. Every third Thursday, March through October, on Main Street in downtown Joplin, enjoy local artisans, music, entertainment and food. Free. More information:, 928.514.7713.

May 25: Joplin Goes to the Movies: There’s No Business Like Show Business, 6 p.m., Central Christian Center. See a variety of films that feature events or actors with a connection to Joplin. This musical comedy-drama follows Molly and Terry Donahue, plus their three children. Together, they are The Five Donahues. However, when Molly and Terry’s son Tim meets hat-check girl Vicky, the family act begins to fall apart. Introduction by Gary Band, background story from Carol Lou Clark (Parker). This event is part of the Joplin sesquicentennial celebration. Free. More information:, 417.625.4789.


Through May 13: PhotoSpiva 2023, Harry M. Cornell Arts & Entertainment Complex, Spiva Center for the Arts, 212 W. 7th St. Celebrating its 47th year, PhotoSpiva 2023 delivers an exhibit of photographic excellence from artists across the country. The competition is open to all US photographers and any type of photographic process. Free; donations appreciated. More information:, 417.623.0183.

Through May 12: The 24th Annual Jo Mueller Small Works Auction, Harry M. Cornell Arts & Entertainment Complex, Spiva Center for the Arts, 212 W. 7th St. In this exhibit and auction, Spiva member artists create works ranging from jewelry to collage, which they donate for auctioning. Free; donations appreciated. More information:, 417.623.0183.

Through May 12: Iconic Joplin, Harry M. Cornell Arts & Entertainment Complex, Spiva Center for the Arts. Local teens are celebrating Joplin’s sesquicentennial by recreating six historic landmarks with LEGO bricks. Three host organizations—the Creative Learning Alliance, Joplin History & Mineral Museum and Joplin Public Library—have held eight sessions for the teens to create the Joplin landmarks—The Olivia Apartments,

Joplin Union Depot, Crystal Cave, Joplin Public Library, the Bonnie & Clyde Apartment and Grand Falls—over the course of five months. Now, these teens are unveiling their creations and the public is invited to view and vote for their favorite landmark to win the People’s Choice Award! This event is part of the Joplin sesquicentennial celebration. Free; donations appreciated. More information:, 417.623.0183.

Through May 31: Lost & Found: Remarkably Bright Objects, Joplin Public Library. A community-based found art exhibit is an art show that coincides with the library’s premier Community Read program, Joplin Reads Together. Their selected book, Remarkably Bright Creatures by Shelby Van Pelt, prominently features “lost and found” among its themes and motifs, making it the perfect theme for this exhibition. In March 2023, Joplin Public Library and Post Art Library released an open call for entry for artworks that incorporate found objects. What you see in this exhibit are original artworks that incorporate found objects. For more information about Joplin Public Library’s Community Read program, visit: Free. More information:, 417.623.7953 x1041.


May 6: Textile Printmaking with Jade Henning-Cantrell, (ages 10+), noon–2 p.m., Harry M. Cornell Arts & Entertainment Complex, Spiva Center for the Arts, Learn the joy of printmaking using found objects for ready-made textures! Paint gorgeous designs onto canvas bags you can use again and again. Registration required; register at classes. All materials provided. Cost: $35. More information: jhenning@, 417.623.0183.

Spiva Center for the Arts, 222 W. 3rd Street

Tuesdays: Creation Station (ages 6-11), 4-5:15 p.m. Painting, drawing, clay, collage, sculpture and more. Pre-registration recommended; register at In advance $6, at the door $8. More information:, 417.623.0183.


Create N’ Sip Studios, 223 W. 3rd Street:

Wednesdays: Wine’d Down Wednesday, 5-9 p.m. Canvas and home decor DIY event. Choose the project that works for you. Prices vary depending on chosen project. $28-$58. Info:, 417.680.5434.

Saturdays: Saturday Morning Choose Your Canvas, 10 a.m. Select the painting you want to recreate and let the experienced staff at Create N Sip help you make a masterpiece. Prices vary depending on chosen project. Cost: $28-$176. Information:, 417.680.5434.

Local Color Art Gallery & Studio, 1027 S. Main Street: Call the gallery at 417.553.0835 to sign up.

Every Tuesday: Beginner’s watercolor class, 11 a.m.-1 p.m., $20. Bring your own supplies. Ages 8 and up.

Every Tuesday and Wednesday: 2 p.m., $20. Improve your painting and learn principles of design. Bring your own watercolor, oils or acrylic paint.

May 12: Watercolor, 1-3 p.m. All supplies furnished; $30.

May 13: Saturday Paint Class, 10:30 a.m.-1 p.m., $30, includes all supplies and ice cream cone from Caroline’s; ages 8 and up; paint Monet or Van Gogh. Artists: Jesse McCormick, Percilla Penner & Margie Moss

May 2023 • • 15

Kicking off a summer schedule of musical events at the Cornell Complex

The temperatures are heating up and so are the varied offerings from Connect2Culture at the Harry M. Cornell Arts and Entertainment Complex in Joplin. This inaugural season of concerts moves into showcasing the outdoor space known as the Leggett & Platt Green with its first concert from a local band with a national following.

Me Like Bees

Me Like Bees emerged on the music scene in 2013 with the release of their first full-length album, The Ides, and their winning performance in the Ernie Ball Music Man Battle of the Bands. Today, the Joplin-based band is extremely popular for their distinctive blend of catchy indie rock and meticulously crafted lyrics, which capture the existential weight of the world.  Formed on the heels of the 2000s indie rock scene, the band was started by college dropout Pete Burton and former gas station clerk Luke Sheafer in 2009. The pair met while playing high school football together in Kansas, only to lose touch and serendipitously end up at the same college town in Southwest Missouri several years later.

And where did the band name come from? The impetus was a Bible verse, Psalm 118:12 that reads, “They surrounded me like bees; they went out like a fire among thorns; in the name of the Lord I cut them off!”

The band just released a new record a month ago, on the 10-year anniversary of their first record. “We’ve put out singles and such, a lot of music actually, in that time, but this is a full record of songs, and we’ll be playing many of them at the Joplin concert,” Shaefer said. “We feel honored to be the first band to play on the Green. We’re pretty excited to have a venue like this in Joplin.”

The rest of the summer will find the group playing festivals and other venues in Chicago, St. Louis and Kansas City. “We plan to keep writing songs, growing our audience and doing what we’ve always done,” Shaefer said. “I’ll always be a songwriter, and it’s nice to have an outlet for that.”


The Okee Dokee Brothers

Childhood friends Joe Mailander and Justin Lansing have always loved exploring the outdoors. Now, as the Grammy Award-winning Okee Dokee Brothers, they put this passion for nature at the heart of their musical collaborations. With witty lyrics, strong musicianship and unique folk style, The Okee Dokee Brothers perform for families across the nation, inspiring them to step outside and develop a deeper respect for the natural world, their communities and themselves.

“Our new album came out a few weeks ago, and it’s the perfect setting for what we’re doing,” Joe Mailander said. “It’s about a bunch of critters in the woods on their way back to finding community. We’ve noticed a bit of separation in our world lately, and I think the coming back to our sense of community theme is an important one at this time.”

The performance will be a family-oriented and participatory one. “We encourage dancing and singing along,” Mailander said. “The kids learn the songs, and if something happens and we forget the lyrics, they are right there to remind us of what’s next.”

Mailander describes their musical style as “old timey folk” and said, “We just like the positivity of it. Nature inspires us, and we decided to

stop sitting in our basements talking about nature and to get out and have adventures in it. That really inspired us to write more.”

The dynamic musical duo has been friends since they were three years old and began playing songs in high school. “We love each other and share the stage with respect for one another,” Mailander said. “Our families support us, and we have a nice life with a nice slow growth in our musical careers. I don’t see that stopping anytime soon.”

Want to Go?

June 3, 2023 • 7:30 p.m.

Harry M. Cornell Arts & Entertainment Complex, Leggett & Platt Green

Tickets: $10-$20

Series: Ignite Series

Want to Go?

May 13, 2023 • 7:30 p.m.

Harry M. Cornell Arts & Entertainment Complex, Leggett & Platt Green

Tickets: $20

Series: Cornell Series

May 2023 • • 17

Congratulations to our nominees and winners of the Carl Junction Area Community Awards! We had an amazing evening celebrating with over 200 people representing businesses, organizations and school staff who love, advocate and support our community. The 2023 winners are:

- Excellence in Customer Service: Bailey’s Family Dining

- Innovation in Service: Trackside Burgers & BBQ

- Rookie of the Year: Spirit Junction

- Non-Profit of the Year: FosterAdopt Connect Joplin

- Citizen of the Year: Tera Miller

- Chamber Member of the Year: Julianna Crow

- Business of the Year: Higdon Florist & Delivery

SAVE THE DATE! Second Tuesday in the Park returns this year in Memorial Park in Carl Junction Tuesday, June 13, from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. Expect fun and games, food trucks, vendors, crafts, bounce houses, and the NEW splash pad in Carl Junction will be open! June’s theme is Sports Night, sponsored by Kraft Insurance Services.


Spring is certainly in the air in Carthage, and the Chamber is getting geared up for all the great things happening here. The first weekend in May is the city-wide garage sales, from the 5th to the 7th. Garage sale maps will be available in the after-hours outside box at the Carthage Chamber at 402 South Garrison Avenue. This anticipated event brings hundreds of visitors to the town every year to treasure hunt for great deals and steals!

The Carthage Chamber, along with MSSU Small Business Development Center, will host its EmPOWERing Women in Leadership Inaugural Leadership Conference May 10. This will be held from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Carthage Memorial Hall, 407 South Garrison Avenue. Attendees will hear from the SBDC on best practices from how to start up a business, having the correct business plans and many advantages women have in owning their own business. A panel of three Carthage businesswomen will share their successes and failures juggling family life on their way to the top. Guests will also be enlightened to hear from the keynote speaker, KOAM TV Vice President and General Manager Brook Arnold, who will share her story of how she came from a metropolitan area at an Indiana NBC station before settling locally in central Missouri. The cost to attend is $20, which includes lunch. Tickets may be purchased at www.

Race Brothers carries a complete line of farm and home supplies including clothing, electrical, plumbing, lawn and garden, outdoor power equipment, tools, truck accessories, pet supplies, cattle-handling equipment, farm fencing and toys. Dedicated to providing the Carthage area with quality service and products for over 40 years. You’ll like the way we do business…tell a friend!

May 2023 • • 19 Race Brothers Farm & Home Supply 2309 Fair Lawn Dr. 417.358.3529

Where it’s ‘COOL’ to be YOU!

Visit these local establishments to experience a variety of creative events this spring:

JOPLIN ARTS DISTRICT NEWS - A snapshot of news, events and activities happening in May.

Art Exhibits, Theater and Music

Connect2Culture, 212 West 7th Street: Presents a Joplin Goes to The Movies free showing of 1927 film Captain Salvation, featuring Joplin-born actress Pauline Stark May 11 at 7 p.m. Saturday, May 13, at 7:30 p.m., the band Me Like Bees on the Leggett & Platt Green. For ticket information and other details call 417.501.5550. All performances are held at the Harry M. Cornell Arts and Entertainment Complex.

First Thursday ArtWalk with eight locations May 4 from 5:30-8:30 p.m., in downtown historic Joplin. Artists, musicians and host businesses offer a pleasant evening of local arts experiences. Find a map of locations posted on Facebook/ firstthursdayartwalkjoplinEvents.

Local Color Art Gallery, 1027 South Main Street: Painter Barb Hicklin will teach beginning watercolor (ages 8 and up) every Tuesday from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., $20 walk-in and bring your supplies. Walk in or RSVP 417.553.0835.

Spiva Center for the Arts, inside the Cornell Complex, 212 West Seventh Street: Enjoy viewing the 2023 Jo Mueller Small Works Auction, Photospiva 2023 in its 47th year as a national juried show of photography; PhotoSpiva Kids and Teens, and Jim Mueller: Local Legacy, celebrating the life and work of renowned photographer, instructor and PhotoSpiva founder; and Four States Photography Enthusiasts Club annual juried exhibition from the best photographers in the Joplin area.

Third Thursdays street festival is an outside community event on the first through seventh blocks of downtown Main Street. Enjoy the next event May 18 from 5:308:30 p.m., where you can enjoy music, entertainment, food trucks and artisan crafts. This event is on third Thursdays through October. See more information at Facebook/ JoplinThirdThursday.

Urban Art Gallery, 511 South Main Street: Featuring photographer Mike Ritzman with works from On the Beaten Path during May. Meet Mike May 4 from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m.

Bar, Restaurant and Shops Offerings

Beast & Barrel, 530 South Main Street: Enjoy the A Brush With Paint exhibit created by Carthage teacher/artist and Missouri High School Art Teacher of the year 2022, painter Cheryl Church. Meet the artist May 4 from 5:30-8:30 p.m.

Brew Pub & Parlor, 813 South Main Street:  Karaoke every Tuesday, 8 p.m., 21+, no cover. Free comedy shows last Friday of every month.

Blackthorn Pizza and Pub, 510 South Joplin Avenue: Stand Up Comedy Open Mic 8:30 p.m. each Sunday. Singer/song writer Open Mic on second Wednesday at 8:00 p.m. All ages until 10 p.m., no cover.

May 19, 10 p.m. to midnight, enjoy a new drag show hosted by Victoria and Misty.

May 20 at 10 p.m., The Science of Band and Thru It Band.

Brew Pub & Parlor, 813 South Main Street: Karaoke every Tuesday, 8 p.m., 21+, no cover. Catch a free comedy show the last Friday of every month.

Chaos Brewing Company, 122 South Main Street: Play free trivia Wednesdays at 7 p.m.

Club 609, 609 South Main Street: Presents artist members of Local Color Art Gallery showing The HeART of Joplin, featuring Joplin’s history in art. Meet the artists May 4 from 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.

Joplin Avenue Coffee Company, 506 South Joplin Avenue: Presents artist Rachel Cabral, with her realistic paintings in “Mirror of My Mind.” Meet Rachel during her reception May 4, 5:30-8:30 p.m. Also enjoy Downtown Poetry at 6 p.m., the third Monday of every month and Open Mic Night the fourth Thursday of every month, 6:30 p.m. Free.

Plant Parenthood, 528 South Main Street: Presents artwork from artists Marta Churchwell, Merlen White, Connie Miller, Brent Skinner and others. Meet the artists May 4 from 5:30-8:30 p.m.

Countryside in the City is one of the leading florists in Joplin for fine, quality roses, flowers, plants and gifts for every occasion. Let our experienced designers and staff create a one-of-a-kind gift you will love. We also offer beautiful custom-designed wedding flower arrangements including wedding bouquets, centerpieces and boutonnieres. Open Monday-Friday 8 am-5 pm and Saturday 9 am-1 pm. Convenient parking.

Blackthorn Pizza & Pub is a welcoming and inclusive Irish pub in the heart of downtown Joplin. This hip spot is famous for its delicious food, huge beer selection on tap, the area’s best live music and unforgettable drag shows. Follow Blackthorn on Facebook for upcoming events. Open 7 days a week and now also open for lunch Thursday through Monday.

Blackthorn Pizza & Pub 510 S. Joplin Ave Joplin, MO 417.623.2485 Facebook: @ BlackthornPizza&Pub Countryside in the City Florist • Event Planner Event Venue 422 S. Joplin Ave. 417.781.3719

Red Onion

If you’re on the hunt for a great lunch or dinner spot in downtown Joplin, you can’t go wrong with the Red Onion Cafe. Ask any local for a recommendation and there’s a good chance they’ll point you in the direction of this bustling restaurant at the corner of 4th and Virginia. This restaurant is a local favorite, and for good reason. The menu is diverse, with options ranging from classic comfort food to healthier options, all of which are delicious.

During my visit to the Red Onion, I had the pleasure of sitting down with Owner David Blum and General Manager John Starchman for a chat and tried some of their most popular menu items that luckily were some of my favorites.

We started with the famous smoked chicken dip, which was topped with jalapeños and those delicious red onions. If you are up for a new appetizer, try the smoked chicken and chipotle lime nachos. The combination of flavors was out of this world.

Our entrees included my go-to lunch pick, Dave’s Fried Chicken Salad. Its unique coconut-breaded chicken paired with fresh salad along with its signature honey mustard dressing is a must-try. Other menu items we sampled included the Tuxedo Chicken, a hearty dish with pasta, grilled chicken and broccoli in a creamy alfredo sauce, and a fresh and light option of grilled salmon.

David shared that his favorite menu item is the Love Me Tender Sandwich, while John’s pick is the Bacon Wrapped Grilled Shrimp from the restaurant’s “Food for Life” keto-friendly menu, inspired by John’s personal journey.

If you’re in the mood for something sweet, you won’t be disappointed with the dessert options at the Red Onion Café. We sampled a few treats, and while the yummy keto-friendly cheesecake with mixed berries was a guilt-free option, we couldn’t resist the indulgence of the Italian Cream Cake. This cake was a delightful combination of buttery cake with a pecan and coconut filling and a velvety vanilla bean cream cheese frosting. Another standout dessert was the banana pudding cheesecake, which blended the fresh taste of bananas with the creamy richness of cheesecake. And if you’re a fan of the classics, the traditional cheesecake topped with juicy strawberries was equally delicious.

The Red Onion has been a beloved fixture of the Joplin community for the past 28 years, and it’s not hard to see why. Consistency is key, says David, and the restaurant’s focus on carrying out a simple concept has been a major factor in its success. In addition to dine-in options, the Red Onion Cafe also offers catering for events. The restaurant is open Monday through Saturday from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. I recommend stopping by for a delicious meal and friendly service.

May 2023 • • 21
>> Red Onion Café is
at 203 E. 4th • Downtown Joplin, Missouri • 417.623.1004 • Open: Monday-Saturday 11am-9pm

ShowMe Dining Guide

Club 1201

1201 E. 32nd Street • Joplin, MO

Now serving Joplin’s best brunch! Homemade beignets, pastries, biscuits and gravy, peppered bacon, eggs and parmesan fried potatoes and more! For lunch, enjoy your favorite appetizers, “out-of-this-world” salads, seasoned breads and your choice of dressing, soup du jour, sandwiches from burgers to apricot turkey and over 30 other choices! We offer a full service catering menu for private parties, business meetings and special events.

Hours: Tuesday-Thursday: 11 am-3 pm; Friday: 11 am-10 pm; Saturday and Sunday: 9 am-2 pm

Finn’s 2707 E. 32nd Street • Joplin, MO 417.624.3466 •

Finn’s is a semi-fine dining restaurant that caters to all your dining desires. Enjoy our dog-friendly patio and warm, inviting fireplaces. From our uniquely crafted cocktails, farm-fresh ingredients and Joplin’s best in-house bakery paired with our elegant, intimate atmosphere for small gatherings or a night out. Finn’s chefs are experts in their craft, with just the right touch to make your restaurant experience special. $$-$$$

Hours: Monday -Saturday: 11 am-9 pm

Sunday: CLOSED

Bailey’s Family Dining

1200 Briarbrook Dr. • Carl Junction, MO 417.781.2944 • Like us on Facebook!

Bailey’s restaurant offers a variety of home-cooked meals that are sure to satisfy. Enjoy one of our many delicious burgers with hand-breaded onion rings or try a pulled pork chimichanga. On the weekend, join us for breakfast where everything is made from scratch. From sweet to savory, we offer specialty pancakes, omelets and all your breakfast favorites. $-$$

Hours: Monday-Friday 11 am-10 pm; Saturday-Sunday 7 am-10 pm.

Shawanoe Restaurant

70220 East Hwy 60 • Wyandotte, OK 888.992 SKY1

Shawanoe Restaurant, located inside Indigo Sky Casino, is serving delicious award-winning chef creations daily. Bring your family and friends and enjoy delicious desserts, gourmet sandwiches, upscale salads, and a wonderful selection of pasta dishes. For the steak lover, mouth-watering steaks cooked to perfection. Everything to satisfy your appetite, plus your favorite beverage. Go to for additional information. Located inside Indigo Sky Casino, Hwy 60 West of Seneca, MO. $-$$$

Special Advertising Section

Kascade Steakhouse

988 S. Country Club Rd • Carthage, MO 417.553.7357 • Like us on Facebook!

Kascade Steakhouse is Carthage’s newest spot for a delicious bite to eat. The chef is an expert in gourmet steaks, steakburgers, salmon and Italian food – his authentic alfredo is to die for. Come in on Fridays for the prime rib special. Under the same owners as Midway Café in Bartlesville, OK, where we are serving up the breakfast you have come to know and love. Dining room and lounge accommodates groups, events and weddings. $-$$

Open Tuesday-Saturday 4-9 pm

Sam’s Cellar Bar & Oven

101 N. Wood • Neosho, MO 417.451.3330 •

Sam’s Cellar offers a unique dining experience under the historic square in Neosho, MO. Enjoy gourmet wood-fired pizzas, burgers, wings, wraps, subs or a specialty salad. The full bar offers signature cocktails, draft beers and wine to wet your whistle. Come visit us at Sam’s Cellar for a dining experience you will never forget! $-$$

Hours: Monday-Sunday, 11 am-Close

Taste of Italy

4321 S. Chapel Road • Carthage, MO 417.358.2000

“The trouble with eating Italian food is that five or six days later, you’re hungry again.” Taste of Italy serves up delectable, authentic Italian food with new specials almost daily. Owner and Head Chef Aleks Sula was born in Albania and raised in New York City, so he brings 20-plus years of experience in traditional Italian and Mediterranean cooking to his menu. You can expect made-from-scratch bread, sauces, pasta and more. $-$$

Hours: Tuesday-Saturday, 11 am-9 pm; Sunday, 11 am-3 pm

Haven 55 408 Havenhurst Drive • Pineville, MO 417.223.2055 •

Haven 55 is a cozy country restaurant with a magnificent view, delicious homestyle food and exceptional service. The culinary masterpieces from Owner and Executive Chef Alan Bone cannot be beat. You will love the New York strip steak with blue cheese cream sauce, the fried green beans, and you don’t want to miss Wednesday night prime rib! Located on the site of the old Havenhurst Mill, built in 1868, this historical restaurant overlooks the dam on Little Sugar Creek. $-$$$

Hours: Tues-Sat for lunch 11 am-2 pm, and dinner 5 pm-9 pm

May 2023 • • 23 Special Advertising Section

ShowMe Dining Guide

Red Onion Café

203 E. 4th • Downtown Joplin, MO 417.623.1004 •

Casual urban dining in historic downtown Joplin since 1995. Famous for fresh salads, smoked chicken dip, burgers, pasta, grilled fish and steaks. The menu has a wide variety of gluten-free, low-carb and keto-friendly items. Extensive craft beer menu and wines by the glass. Full-service catering for groups large and small. Consistently voted “Best Restaurant” and “Best Menu” by 417 Magazine and The Joplin Globe. $-$$

Hours: Monday-Saturday 11am-9 pm

Hackett Hot Wings

520 S. Main • Joplin, MO 417.625.1333 •

“The only wings better are on an angel.” Offering 13 flavors of wings, plus salads, catfish, chicken tenders, chicken sandwiches, hamburgers, boneless wings and more! Call for catering and reservations. Now offering an additional dining area and sports room with 17 big-screen TVs and full bar featuring Coach Hackett’s Ultimate Bloody Mary. Check out the online store at (Smoke-free) $-$$

Hours: Mon-Thurs, 11 am-9 pm; Fri-Sun, 11 am-10 pm; Mon-Wed Lunch Specials, 11 am-2 pm; Mon-Wed Happy Hour, 3-6 pm.


Trackside Burgers & BBQ

1515 West 10th St. • Joplin, MO


Trackside Burgers & BBQ offers freshly made items to order. Chef Mike and his staff offer the old-fashioned hamburgers everyone loves and more, from homemade sauces and seasoned fries to perfectly prepared chicken sandwiches and onion rings. Chef Mike wants to share his love for food and his heart to serve people. Call about catering for your next party or event! $-$$

Hours: Monday-Friday, 11 am-8 pm; Saturday, 11 am-3 pm

Just A Taste

105 S. Main St. • Webb City, MO 417.673.9463 •

Just A Taste Webb City has a plethora of incredible spaces for you to try out. Every time you come in, you can have a unique experience. Visit our tasting room, which features our own wine made in St. James, Missouri. Or, join us for dinner in our intimate restaurant or indoor courtyard, where we feature a farm-to-table menu. Or, stop in for a drink in our cozy cocktail bar featuring an inventive cocktail menu and hundreds of beer and spirits. $$-$$$. Check Facebook for hours.

Special Advertising Section

Club 609 609 Main Street • Joplin, MO 417.623.6090

“Treat your appetite to a GOURMET DELIGHT served ‘Joplin style’.” Flavorful specialties for any occasion, featuring salads, burgers and sandwiches. Delicious entrees – beef, chicken, pork, seafood and seven “pastabilities!” Offering appetizers, homemade desserts, soup du jour, beer, wine and mixed drinks. Kids menu available. $-$$$

Hours: Kitchen open Monday-Friday 11 am-10 pm Saturday 11 am-10:30 pm • Bar open later

Casa Montez

4224 S. Main St. • Joplin, MO 417.624.2272

Casa Montez is back in business and ready to serve you! The team at Casa Montez is serving up all of your favorite recipes as before as well as their famous cheese dip. If you’re looking for the perfect Mexican cuisine including delicious tacos, enchiladas, fajitas and so much more, you must visit Casa Montez at their new location. Call ahead for your to-go order and conveniently pick up at the walk-up window. $-$$

Hours: Tuesday-Saturday 11 am-8 pm

Undercliff Grill & Bar

6835 Old Highway 71 • Joplin, MO 417.629.2869 •

Undercliff Grill & Bar is back in business! This historical restaurant has been brought back to life under new ownership, so come by to grab a bite to eat and see what’s new. Chow down on some good old-fashioned comfort food or grab a beer at the bar. Undercliff Grill & Bar is the perfect spot for breakfast, lunch, a date or a night out with friends and family. Follow Undercliff Grill & Bar on Facebook to learn more! $-$$.

Hours: Wednesday-Friday, 11 am-9 pm; Saturday, 9 am-9 pm; Sunday, 9 am-3 pm.

Mis Arcos

1926 S. Garrison Ave. • Carthage, MO 417.237.0547

For the delicious authentic Mexican food you crave, there’s no place like MisArcos. We offer great choices, from our mouthwatering quesadillas to sizzling fajitas to massive burritos. There’s a reason we were voted Best of the Four States for Mexican food! Did we mention our two for $5 margaritas? Mis Arcos is the home of great food, fun times and lots of laughs! $-$$

Hours: Mon-Wed, 11 am-9 pm; Fri, 11 am-9:30 pm; Sat/Sun 11 am-9 pm

May 2023 • • 25 Special Advertising Section

EVENTS Northeast OK

Miami, OK

May 18: 7-10 p.m. Coleman Theatre


Ginger Billy is a hillbilly turned comedian and has been recognized as a heartthrob because of his incredible physique. He is shirtless, tattooed and gives viewers a humorous look into life. For years, he was a respiratory therapist, but one day, after the retirement of Dale Earnhardt Jr., he thought he’d make a video, and his popularity on social media launched his comedy career.

Tickets: VIP seats $50 | Tier 1 $35 | Tier 2 $25 + Fees

May 20-21: Dennis James on The Mighty Wurlitzer: Keaton & Lloyd, 7 p.m.; May 20, 2:30 p.m., Coleman Theatre

Dennis James will delight the audience as he performs the score to accompany Buster Keaton and Harold Lloyd, two classic comedy stars. James selected a short Keaton film to showcase Keaton’s style in The Balloonatic, which finds Keaton walking through an amusement park and eventually floating away in a hot air balloon. He lands in the forest, where he encounters a woman, and the gags mount as they try to survive in the wilderness. James will then follow with the physicality of Harold Lloyd in Safety Last, a vehicle for Lloyd’s continuing study of ambition in America. As The Young Man Out to Make His Name in the World, Harold lands a job as a department store clerk and sends glowing letters and lavish gifts to the girl back home, leading her to think him suddenly wealthy and in need of financial, and marital, guidance. Upon her unexpected arrival, Harold enters into his elaborate ruse to impress the girl, climaxing in a now-famous aerial publicity stunt.

Tickets - Adults: $20, seniors: $17, students: $12 plus tax and fees. May 29: 2023 Memorial Day Ceremony, 10:30 a.m., GAR Cemetery, 2801 North Main Street. Call 918.541.2288 for information

Grove, OK

May 5: Food Truck Friday

5-9 p.m., Grove City Hall Lawn, Broadway and West 3rd Streets

Come to the City Hall lawn (corner of Broadway and West 3rd streets) to enjoy good food, live music and more! The Grove Area Creative Alliance will bring art and artists for this month’s Food Truck Friday.

May 5-6: City Wide Garage Sale, 7 a.m. throughout Grove Sales throughout the city. Contact the Grove Sun at 918.542.5533.

May 12-14: American Frontiersmen Days, 9 a.m-3 p.m., Har-Ber Village Museum, 4404 West 20th Road.

The early American frontiersman will be featured in living history from 1700 to 1860.

Dates and times are subject to change. Please call the Miami Convention and Visitors Bureau at 918.542.4435 to confirm.

Spotlights Oklahoma Business

Har-Ber Village Museum

4404 W. 20th St. • Grove, OK

Email: Info@HAR· • 918.786.6446

A visit to this quiet lakeside village will take you on a nostalgic journey into the past. Har-Ber Village Museum celebrates the bygone era of pioneer life in Oklahoma. Multiple log cabins house eclectic collections of antiques, and frequent living-history demonstrations bring the times alive for visitors. Remember the past, celebrate the present, imagine the future! Open the third Saturday in March through the first Saturday in November. Hours 9 am-3:30 pm, closed Tuesday and Wednesday.

New Life Spa

2086 S. Main • Grove, OK 918.948.2758

Balance. New Life Spa is designed to help you find balance and healing in your life.

If you are just looking to visit or are considering a membership, Sharon, our wonderful concierge, will be happy to give you a tour of our spa, explain the benefits and functions of amenities. From our salt room and salt sauna, red light vitamin D therapy and oxygen bar to many pain management services, you will find many ways to help your body heal itself.

See our website for all of the details about our services so you can get started feeling better today!

Lendonwood Gardens

One mile west of Main St. on Har-Ber Road 918.786.2938 •

Don’t miss the springtime colors of Lendonwood Gardens, an 8-acre botanical garden in Grove. You’ll enjoy beautiful azaleas, rhododendrons, daylilies, dogwoods, peonies and more! Stop by the Oklahoma Garden for regional plant ideas, and check out the Japanese Pavilion overlooking the Koi pond. You’ll see why Lendonwood offers the perfect backdrop for weddings, photography and special events. Open year-round from dawn to dusk. Make a date to visit Art in the Garden Saturday, May 6, when area artisans display and sell their works along Lendonwood’s winding pathways.

Zena Suri Alpacas

35401 S. 580 Road • Jay, OK • 804.389.2579

Bring the whole family and walk together among our peacefully grazing alpaca moms and daughters. This spring, bring a picnic or head to the alpaca store for air-conditioning, to sign the guest book or maybe to shop for alpaca items. People come from around the world to visit Zena Suri Alpacas, and some even spend the night.

May means haircuts at Zena Suri Alpacas. Did you ever wonder where Dr. Seuss got ideas for some of his characters? Come and meet our newly shorn characters—buy their fiber, yarn, toys or maybe a beautiful sweater for Mom.

Call 804.389.2579 to arrange an unforgettable experience. We are in Zena, Oklahoma, near Grand Lake.

May 2023 • • 27
Special Advertising Section

6th Annual Toes in the Grand Festival showcases Grove as perfect summertime destination

Once again, a grandiose four days packed full of wide-ranging entertainment is returning to Grove, Oklahoma, with the sixth annual Toes in the Grand Festival that’s slated to bring thousands of residents and visitors to this town of about 7,000 in mid-June.

Amongst a variety of options to enjoy will be Pride Amusement Carnival, 2 Hip Chicks Roadshow with more than 100 booths, Historical Semi-Trucks Show-N-Shine, and Thunder on Wolf Creek Boat Races, as well as a beer garden and several food trucks.

In describing some of the feature attractions, Grove Area Chamber of Commerce and Grove Convention & Tourism Director/Membership Director Brent Malone says, “2 Hip Chicks is a traveling road show that sells everything from A–Z clothes, antiques, crafts, etc.

“The American Truck Historical Society (ATHS) Green Country Chapter will be bringing some of their finest-looking semi-trucks from all over the U.S. This group will be coming from a national event in Reno, Nevada, and headed to Grove to show off some of the coolest antique semis in the world.”

Another experience sure to create a great deal of excitement is the Thunder on Wolf Creek Boat Races. “American Power Boat Association (APBA) hydroplanes are some of the coolest racing machines in the world,” says Malone.

“These guys set on their knees, running speeds upwards of 90 mph, while battling a circle track at Wolf Creek Park. These boats will be

traveling from all over the U.S. to compete in the Wolf Creek Nationals. These boats have been coming to Grand Lake ‘O the Cherokees for the past 10 years.”

All those in attendance will have plenty to eat. Malone says, “There will be around 10-12 food trucks with everything from barbecue, Thai food and Italian food to American food, ice cream and candy. You will not go hungry. We will also have a beer garden for adults sponsored by Grove’s Royal Liquor.”

As for the music, Malone shares, “Zimmeroo is a ‘90s rock band from Grove. 80 & Out is a group out of Southwest Missouri, also a rock and roll group. We’re calling Friday night our ‘Rock Out Friday.’

“Saturday’s bands are Backwood Country from Jay, Oklahoma, which won the Battle of the Bands a couple years ago. Ricochet is a ‘90s country band that had several No. 1 hits, and they will be the finale.”

The way Malone sees it, there is a whole lot to like about all that’s offered here, and he says, “There’s free music, free boat races and a free semi-trucks show. The only thing that will cost is if you want to buy something from a vendor or the rides at the carnival.

“This is the kickoff to our summer events. It’s going to be bigger than ever with music and fun. This is our first year with a full-fledged carnival. We’re adding shopping and a huge vendor base. The racing has been part of this for the past four years. Adding semi-trucks gives men a reason to come.”

It is a family affair, and Malone says, “Kids can ride the rides, mom can shop and dad can grab a beer, watch the boat races and look at some unbelievable semi-trucks. Then, they can all gather as a family, pull up lawn chairs and listen to some great music.

“Grove is growing, and we love showing off our beautiful town and flexing our lake-life muscles.”


Thursday, June 15 – Wolf Creek Park:

• 5-10 p.m. / Pride Amusement Park

Friday, June 16 – Wolf Creek Park:

• 12-10 p.m. / 2 Hip Chicks Roadshow, Historical Semi-Trucks Show-N-Shine, Thunder on Wolf Creek Boat Races (ends at 5 p.m.), food trucks and beer garden

• 3-10 p.m. / Pride Amusement Park

• 5-7 p.m. / Live music with Zoomeroo

• 7:30-10 p.m. / Live music with 80s and Out

Saturday, June 17 – Wolf Creek Park:

• 12-10 p.m. / 2 Hip Chicks Roadshow, Historical SemiTrucks Show-N-Shine, Thunder on Wolf Creek Boat Races (ends at 5 p.m.), food trucks and beer garden

• 3-10 p.m. / Pride Amusement Park

• 5-7 p.m. / Live music with Backwood Country

• 7:30-10 p.m. / Live music with Ricochet

Sunday, June 18 – Wolf Creek Park:

• 10 a.m.-3 p.m. / Thunder on Wolf Creek Boat Races

28 Featuring Oklahoma SMTO

Toes in the Grand Festival FAST FACTS

When: Thursday, June 15-Sunday, June 18

Where: Wolf Creek Park, Grove, Oklahoma

Lots to Do in Grove: Festival organizers encourage those visiting for the Toes in the Grand Festival to enjoy all the great things to see and do in Grove and Grand Lake this weekend. Here in our corner of Northeast Oklahoma, you’ll find may great things – 45,000-acre Grand Lake ‘O the Cherokees, Har-Ber Village & Museum, Second Kicks Cycle Works Motorcycle Museum, Honey Creek Hive Mini Golf, Lendonwood Gardens, golf courses at Shangri-La Resort, Patricia Island Country Club, Quail Ridge, parasailing, fishing charters, Grove Farmer’s Market, and an abundance of great shops, restaurants, boutiques and galleries. Plus, the area hosts great events all summer, from top fishing tournaments to the monthly Grove Block Parties and more. Whatever the season, there is always a good reason to visit Grove and Grand Lake.

Gracious Hosts: Toes in the Grand is presented by the Grove Convention & Tourism Bureau and put on by the Grove Area Chamber of Commerce.

For More Information: Contact the Grove Area Chamber of Commerce at 918.786.9079, go to the website or check out the Toes in the Grand Festival Facebook page. Note: The ramps at Wolf Creek Park will be unavailable for public use during the event.

May 2023 • • 29

‘Orchid of the Ozarks’ Celebrating the iris, Joplin’s city flower

As the party continues for Joplin’s 150th anniversary, May ushers in the celebration of the city flower, the iris. A self-guided tour of at least a dozen public and private area iris beds will happen Saturday, May 13, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Tri-State Iris Society members will distribute maps of the iris displays (please be respectful of private home displays, observing from your vehicle or the sidewalk only), coloring sheets for the kids and iris-shaped cookies provided by Frosted Cakerie, and will be available for questions about the planting and growing of iris rhizomes at the Joplin History and Mineral Museum, 504 South Schifferdecker Avenue.

Commemorative iris-shaped cookie cutters will also be available at the museum for $10, with proceeds going to support the Celebrations Commission’s work on anniversary events throughout this year. Committee volunteer Barbara Hoeglin said, “The iris cookie cutters are only being sold at the Mineral Museum and at the Convention and Visitors Bureau. They have been purchased by cookie cutter collectors all over the country and we have just about 400 left for sale.” The cutter comes with a history card and in a cellophane bag.

30 Featuring Joplin SMTO

“We are hoping to make many more residents aware of the iris as our city flower,” said Diane Adams, a Celebrations Commission committee member, Iris Society member and volunteer for the iris project. “The Tri-State Iris Society has provided all of the nearly 800 rhizomes I have distributed through the city.”

According to Adams, some of those rhizomes can be quite pricey and can cost up to $60 apiece. “They come in over 1,500 varieties and color combinations like tall bearded, intermediate, dwarf and re-bloomers,” she said. “I have one called True Patriot that is red, white and blue.”

How did the iris become the city’s flower? It was at the request of the Joplin Garden Club who presented the idea to the City Council in 1938. The club had planted 30,000 bulbs along the main roadways into Joplin, and the perennial plant was recognized for its beautiful colors and long growing season.

The Garden Club’s request was endorsed by the Chamber of Commerce, the Kiwanis Club, the Rotary Club and several other civic groups at that time. Even the president of the Missouri State Florists Society endorsed the request, stating the flower was a hardy one that flourished in the climate and conditions of the soil in the region.

Adams said, “They are easy to grow and just require well-drained soil and full sun. They do have to be thinned about every five years when the blooms decrease.”

The 1938 Joplin Garden Club president, Mertie Dunkle, called the iris “the Ozarks orchid” because it multiplies rapidly, can withstand drought and needs no pruning or spraying. She concluded her City Council presentation by saying, “If residents of the district unite in growing iris, we will add another attractive feature to the beauties of the Ozark region.”

Pick up your FREE map to area iris gardens, grab coloring sheets for the kids and enjoy an iris-shaped cookie treat (and purchase a commemorative cookie cutter for $10) at the Joplin History and Mineral Museum at 504 South Schifferdecker Avenue.

May 2023 • • 31 Want to Go?
Saturday • May 13 10 a.m. - 2 p.m.
Sponsored by the City of Joplin Celebrations Commission, the Tri-State Iris Society and the Joplin History and Mineral Museum.

Rotary Sculpture Garden full of life at Mercy Park

Although Joplin’s Rotary Sculpture Garden just officially became a reality about four years ago when the original nine bronze statues were secured in place, this has become a destination for many area residents.

Rotary Sculpture Garden Board Chairman Robert Headlee says, “The Garden sits within Mercy Park, where previously a hospital was destroyed by the 2011 EF5 tornado. Out of that destruction has come a beautiful park with 19 bronze sculptures.

“The park is enjoyed daily by people walking the sidewalks, people walking their dogs and people using the park for their exercise routines. It has great surroundings, fresh air and is a peaceful place to enjoy the outdoors.”

Headlee and his wife, Judy, had what he calls the “birth of a vision” about six years ago that eventually led to the Rotary Sculpture Garden coming together.

Headlee shares, “In 2017, our son and daughter-in-law lived in Loveland, Colorado. When we visited there, the family would take walks through Benson Sculpture Garden, located in the heart of Loveland. The garden is beautifully landscaped with more than 170 sculptures on permanent display.

“Jim and Barbara Hicklin, friends of ours, were planning a trip to Colorado, and they asked if there was something we would recommend seeing. We encouraged them to visit Loveland and tour the Benson Sculpture Garden. Jim and Barbara were impressed with it.”

32 Featuring Joplin SMTO

Joyful Empowerment

Artist: Angela Mia De la Vega

Donors: Jim & Barbara Hicklin

Installed: 2019


Artist: Tim Cotterill

Donor: Dr. Phillip A. Abston

Installed: 2020

SCULPTURES (page 32)

Rabbit Reach

Artist: Tim Cherry

Donors: Lance & Sharon


Installed: 2019

Otter Motion

Artist: Tim Cherry

Donor: Rotary Club of Joplin

Installed: 2022

SCULPTURES (page 33)

Bridge Of Brotherhood

Artist: Angela Mia De la Vega

Donors: Lance & Sharon

Beshore, Harry M. Cornell, Jr.

Installed: 2021

Wishing On A Star

Artist: Catherine Gary Johnston

Donor: Catherine Gary Johnston

Installed: 2021

Lift Her With Butterflies

Artist: Angela Mia De la Vega

Donors: Lance & Sharon

Beshore, Harry M. Cornell, Jr.

Installed: 2020

Sunshine Every Day

Artist: Angela Mia De la Vega

Donors: Jim & Barbara


Installed: 2020

The Bird Feeder

Artist: Rosalind Cook

Donor: Harry M. Cornell, Jr.

Installed: 2019

Bear Ball

Artist: Tim Cherry

Donors: Jim & Barbara


Installed: 2022

Standing Giraffes (2)

Artist: Unknown

Donor: Harry M. Cornell, Jr.

Installed: 2019

Water Lilly

Artist: Rosalind

Donor: Harry M. Cornell, Jr.

Installed: 2019

After that, Bob, as a member of the Rotary Club of Joplin, and Barbara, who is a member of the Joplin Daybreak Rotary Club, met to discuss the possibility of starting a Rotary Sculpture Garden in Joplin. And from there, Bob and Barbara began talking with various Joplin city officials to pitch the idea and figure out the best location for a sculpture garden.

Ultimately, it was agreed that Mercy Park would be the best location and soon after that, a board of directors was selected. In 2017, the Joplin Rotary Sculpture Garden board of directors gained approval for becoming a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization, while establishing its bylaws.

Rough Night

Artist: Mike Boyce

Donor: Harry M. Cornell, Jr.

Installed: 2019

Finally, September 17, 2019, the Rotary Sculpture Garden moved from concept to reality with the installation of the initial nine statues. In 2020 and 2021, three more sculptures were added each year. Today, the garden has 19 sculptures on permanent display by seven different world-renowned artists.

Headlee couldn’t be more thrilled to be so heavily involved in the Rotary Sculpture Garden, and he affirms that what makes him most proud of all is “being a part of helping to bring an idea to reality, which has brought enjoyment to so many people.”

May 2023 • • 33


River Motion

House Sitter

Outward Bound (2)

Artist: Gary Lee Price

Donors: Lance & Sharon Beshore

Installed: 2020

Artist: Tim Cherry

Donor: Joplin Daybreak Rotary Club

Installed: 2022

Artist: Tim Cherry

Donors: Jim & Barbara Hicklin

Installed: 2022

Joplin Rotary Sculpture Garden Fast Facts

Physical Address: 2730 St. John’s Boulevard, Joplin, MO 64804

Email Address:


Hours of Operation: 7 a.m.-11 p.m.

The Original Idea: Located at Mercy Park in Joplin, Missouri, the Sculpture Garden is the result of a positive effort following a devastating event, and an individual vision that found common, collective footing. The momentum to bring the Rotary Clubs of Joplin Sculpture Garden from concept to reality came in 2018 through a joint agreement by both Joplin Rotary clubs—the Rotary Club of Joplin and the Daybreak Rotary Club—along with a partnership with the City of Joplin.

Artist: Mike Boyce

Donor: Harry M. Cornell, Jr.

Installed: 2019

Mission Statement: The purpose and mission of the Rotary Sculpture Garden is to enhance the quality of life for citizens and visitors to the community by establishing and maintaining a sculpture garden in an existing city park.

Vision Statement: The vision of the Rotary Sculpture Garden is to pair Club service goals with community generosity. The overall goal is for citizens and visitors to be drawn to participate with, explore and enjoy the sculpture within Mercy Park.

Board of Directors: Robert Headlee, chairman; Cleo Copeland, vice-chairman; Barbara Hicklin, treasurer; Wally Bloss, secretary; Sharon Beshore, Lori Marble, Bruce Secrist, Ryan Stanley, David Glenn, Patrick Tuttle and Paul Bloomberg.

Featuring Joplin
Go Escargot
May 2023 • • 35 TICKS A part of

Joplin Memorial Run Looks to the Future While Remembering Lives Lost

As the 12th annual Joplin Memorial Run approaches, all those involved with putting this event together continue to strike a balance between never forgetting that fateful day, while also looking forward and maintaining a mindset of more positive recollections, reflections and remembrances.

Race Director and Rufus Racing, LLC Owner/Founder Ruth Sawkins says, “We got feedback from many people in Joplin that they didn’t want to remember the tornado, just to honor those who were taken. So, we want to let the bad memories go and keep the good ones.”

One of the truly good aspects that has come together is a 17-foot sculpture honoring all the lives lost in the tornado. Sawkins says, “We love that it is available to everyone in Joplin and has all 161 names on it. The sculpture is a standing reminder for those people and for how far Joplin has come.”

As for organization and planning with this important annual memorial race, Sawkins assures, “Sponsors and volunteers are the lifeblood of the event. Without sponsors, we would not have the funds nor the resources to make this event happen, and without volunteers, we could not make the logistics happen.”

Sawkins notes there are around 300 volunteers who assist with a wide range of tasks such as “hydration stations, medals and water to course entertainment and packet pick-ups.”

Overall, this race brings out a tremendous crowd, and Sawkins anticipates a total attendance with about “3,500 people, including the runners, spectators and volunteers.”

36 Featuring Joplin SMTO

Describing the actual race itself, which includes the Freeman half marathon (13.1 miles), Sparklight 10K, Liberty 5K and Sign Design Kids’ half-mile run, Sawkins says, “Thankfully, we usually have great weather, so that always helps. And we do have enough rolling hills in this course to keep it interesting for everyone.”

Regarding participant awards, Sawkins says, “The top three male and female overall finishers get trophies and five-year age group division winners, as well. The kids’ run is not timed or given awards, but they will all get finisher medals.”

More than a decade since the race first began, it remains a big deal for this community. Sawkins believes the key to that is because, “It’s the only memorial event for the 2011 tornado as well as a celebration of Joplin’s progress.”

Sawkins couldn’t be more thrilled to be so heavily involved with this race. “It’s a big responsibility and honor to oversee the event that remembers the 161 lives that were lost.

“And to produce a high-quality running event that Joplin can be proud of is so important. It’s a great day of hard work for the runners, and they are rewarded with swag and food.”

All those involved with this annual memorial run and the citizens have reason to beam with pride at how far this city has come in a relatively short amount of time.

12th Annual Joplin Memorial Run (JMR) Fast Facts

When: Saturday, May 20

Where: Starts/Ends at Cunningham Park

Why: An event to honor the 161 victims from the 2011 Joplin tornado and celebrate Joplin’s resilience in overcoming the destruction of 8,000 structures.

How: Compete in the half marathon (13.1 miles), 10K, 5K and kids’ run.

Funds Raised: JMR has donated more than $300,000 to charity via different organizations over the last 10 years. Provided tornado relief, helped rebuild organizations and have moved more toward focusing funds on helping to improve the health of Joplin citizens. Donations have gone to trail improvements, the Joplin Humane Society, bikes for school children and scholarships for YMCA programs.

Sponsors: Freeman Health System, US Bank, Sparklight, Liberty Utilities, Sign Designs, Great Plains Credit Union, Crossland Construction Company, SNC Squared Network Doctor Company, Forest Park Church, Arvest Bank, Star Mechanical/Wholesale Supply, Zimmer Marketing, Amcor, Visit Joplin, Iconex, The Joplin Globe, Missouri Eagle, KOAM News Now, Show Me The Ozarks Magazine, Runradio. net, KODE Television, JoMo Moving, FOX 14, Chick Fil A, KSN TV, Countryside Self Storage, Metro Emergency Transport System (METS), AMI Radio & Marketing Group, and Northwest Arkansas Naturals Baseball

May 2023 • • 37

Joplin Floor Designs

Featuring Joplin SMTO
Celebrating 30 years

Joplin Floor Designs

Joplin Floor Designs has truly been a family business for over 60 years. The business started as Hukill Furniture and Carpet in Seneca, Missouri, in 1962 by Denzil and Lillian Hukill. Denzil and Lillian ran the business until 1993, when their son, Duane Hukill, bought out the business and moved it to Joplin, renaming it Joplin Floor Designs. This year, Joplin Floor Designs, as we know it today, celebrates 30 years!

Joplin Floor Designs not only sells and installs residential products, but commercial products for businesses, as well. They carry name brands such as Mohawk and Shaw Carpet, wood flooring by Bruce, Harris Tarkett and Mohawk, and ceramic and porcelain tile by Daltile, American Olean and Crossville. Joplin Floor Designs also sells and installs granite

and quartz countertops and have many slabs on site for customers to look at.

Duane feels the success of Joplin Floor Designs has come from the values he was taught by his parents and is still evident in the business today: Give the customer what they want: Quality products at reasonable prices, with personal service and no gimmicks.

“A great part of our business comes from customers who have bought from us and then tell their family and friends to come here,” says Duane. “We are proud that our commitment to service and quality means people recommend us to the most important people in their lives.”

Holly came into the business in 1999 and runs the accounting and marketing end of the business. “People ask me all the time, how do we work together all day and live together, too? I tell them that Duane has his area of the business and I have mine, and then we work together on other parts of the business toward a successful goal,” says Holly.

Duane and Holly both enjoy working with people. “Having customers be really happy with their flooring or countertops once their home or business is built or remodeled and knowing they are going to see the quality products and workmanship for years to come

makes us happy,” says Holly. “And happy people send us their family and friends.”

Joplin Floor Designs has three full-time retail salespeople to help you make your selections and assist you from the minute you walk in the door until your flooring is installed in your home or business. They also have three full-time employees who work in their commercial department on small or large projects, including private offices, schools, churches and medical buildings in the FourState Area. With the help of their office manager, executive assistant and warehouse employees, they can provide excellent service in all aspects of their business.

As for the next 30 years, Duane and Holly hope Joplin Floor Designs continues to offer the highest degree of customer service and products it always has.

May 2023 • • 39
Duane & Holly Hukill 2309 East 32nd Street• Joplin, MO 417.659.8000

Courtney’s Candles & Creations

2029 South Willard Avenue

Joplin, MO


Courtney’s Candles & Creations

started as a hobby with Wilma Belliss making candles in her home kitchen. She shared her love of candles with her friends and family, which led to sharing with people all around the area at local craft shows. As the business began to grow, Courtney’s Candles moved into a 10,000-square-foot warehouse where it still resides today. Generation upon generation, four to be exact, is who you’ll find helping in the store and handling day-to-day operations. This includes Wilma’s mom, Roxanna, expert Warmie wrapper and inspector; Wilma, the founder and candle extraordinaire; Courtney Barnard, Wilma’s daughter, marketing manager and the namesake; and Barrett, Courtney’s son, who loves to take the lids off jars and play with the peanut machine.

A close look at the company’s logo reveals Courtney holding a candle when she was 8 years old.

Putting family first brings joy to Courtney and her family. “Sometimes it gets a little tricky having two husband-andwife teams (and mother/daughter) at the helm, but I like to think we balance each other out,” said Courtney. “We each have our own niche and it just works. We consider our employees family and value what they bring to the table! You will also be greeted by some cute furry faces. Who doesn’t love to bring their dog to work?”

Featuring Joplin SMTO

For the last three decades, Courtney’s Candles & Creations has continued to operate as a family-owned company, making their own candles and home fragrance items. “All our brand Courtney’s products are made right here in Joplin,” said Courtney. “We sell everything from fragrance oils, room sprays, reed diffusers, scented candles, fragrance lamp oils and lamps, to wax melts and warmers.”

Courtney’s Candles also expanded their business to include many other brands and products they love. They carry many popular brands like Woodwick, Tyler Candles, Mixture, Warmies, plus others and have a large inventory in stock. For the last 20 years, Courtney’s Candles & Creations has primarily sold online and will continue to do so, but they wanted to showcase what they have to offer to their local customer family, too, and in turn refreshed their store front this year in order to better serve their local customers. The team is also working on a new website that’ll launch this summer.

Each year, Courtney’s Candles & Creations continues to grow and adapt as new products and fragrances become available, and they invite you to visit them in person or online!

Current Courtney’s Candles Staff Favorites

Courtney – Flannel

Chandley – Whiskey Reserve

Wilma – Black Currant Vanilla

Frank – Patchouli Pure

Candace – Orange Vanilla

Robert – Maple Pecan

May 2023 • • 41

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Helping Adult Learners Build Skills is Primary Focus of Joplin NALA

There’s no better way to show strong support for Joplin NALA (Neighborhood Adult Literacy Action) than by attending this organization’s Joplin History Murder Mystery experience early next month.

Joplin NALA Executive Director Jessica Pommert says, “We’re so excited to provide our very first fundraising dinner this year. Our board president, Josh Shackles, has written this fun and engaging mystery for our event.

“We are excited to provide a fun evening for the community to learn about the history of Joplin, learn about and support the literacy needs of our community and to have fun. Our board has been working tirelessly to put this event together and is seeking volunteers and partners to make it an enjoyable time.”

In explaining what Joplin NALA strives to do, Pommert says, “Our mission is to provide tuition-free programs to improve the self-sufficiency of families by supporting adult learners in their efforts to increase skills – efforts that give them access to a better life and make a positive impact on our community.

“We offer classes and one-on-one tutoring in literacy-related subjects, including reading, writing, math, computer literacy and English as a second language. By helping adults increase their basic skills and to understand the importance of literacy, we are helping adults reach their full potential and access all their options in life, while strengthening the literacy support for children.”

Pommert continues, “Our English as a Second Language classes are impactful, as they provide a place for people to make friends, while they learn a different

language and learn the basics of traversing a new culture.

“We also provide a class for adults with different abilities. This class gives our adult students the opportunity to maintain and improve their literacy levels in reading and math, while gaining confidence and new friendships.”

That’s not all. “We are so grateful for the computer lab that has provided basic and intermediate computer classes and will soon offer a smartphone class. Our students have the opportunity to become digitally literate and able to do tasks that would otherwise be overwhelming without our class.”

As for what allows Joplin NALA to flourish, Pommert says, “We are only as successful as our students. They are the reason we work so hard. Our students begin generationslong ripple effects in their families just by walking through our doors and being ready to learn.

“We could not provide such a vast program without our volunteers. Our volunteers provide a kind, warm, inviting and engaging environment for our students to thrive. I truly believe we have some of the most dependable and engaged volunteers in Joplin.

“We also owe our success to our board members, current and past. Our board has always valued the students first and it is made obvious by their service and dedication.”

It’s easy to see Pommert is ecstatic to have a role in this worthwhile initiative. “The lasting impact this organization has had on our community these 42 years, our students’ resilience, the focused mission of helping others and the bright future ahead make me proud to lead this organization.”

Joplin NALA (Neighborhood Adult Literacy Action)

Fast Facts


123 South Main Street, Joplin, MO

Phone Number: 417.782.2646


Email address:

Hours: Monday-Wednesday from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., Thursday-Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 12 p.m.

Mission: “We are a non-profit committed to the mission of fostering and strengthening literacy skills and coordinating with community resources to provide services, enabling learners to reach their full potential.”

Joplin History Murder Mystery

Fundraiser Event Details: Please join them Saturday, June 3, 6-8:30 p.m. at the Pass Event Center inside Palace Pizza (1208 South Main Street) in downtown Joplin for an evening of dinner, served by Palace Pizza, dancing and murder. Activities include a cash bar, photo booth, money game, dinner, dessert, dancing, party games and, of course, a murder. Semi-formal, formal, Western or appropriate character costumes are required for entry. Seating is limited, so make sure to get your tickets early. Note: All the proceeds from this event go directly to support Joplin NALA’s programming and will help us expand our services to offer Family Literacy programming.

Murder Mystery Event General Admission: $50

May 2023 • • 43


1710 East 32nd Street, Suite G1 • Joplin, Missouri

417.434.2963 •

Radiant-Glo of Joplin offers a wide variety of beauty and skincare services, including spray tans, semi-permanent makeup and bodyscultping treatments. Their jet plasma treatment is a pain-free procedure proven to tighten skin by 14.8% after just one visit, plus many other skin benefits. Radiant-Glo also offers non-invasive laser lipo where the use of red-light lasers directly penetrate through 10 layers of fat, ridding the body of fat cells.

Radiant Glo wants you to feel your best and look your best! They also offer free consultations. Book your appointment at, by calling 417.434.2963 or visiting their location at 1710 East 32nd Street, Suite G1 in Joplin.



Solace House is a home in Joplin providing end-of-life care when dying at home is not an option. We provide a private room for each guest in their last 30 days of life, including kitchen/shower access and a place for a family member to sleep. Our trained volunteers provide 24/7 caregiving assistance for each guest as we work in conjunction with a hospice provider. Solace House of the Ozarks is a non-profit organization relying 100% on donations, grants and volunteers, so there is no charge to the guest or to their family. For more information, visit or call 417.437.9305.



So many businesses and homes have nasty green and black stains and buildup on their exteriors of buildings, concrete and decks. Then they discover Powerwashing Plus, which solves the problem by cleaning everything! With their specialized equipment and custom detergent blends, they can clean more thoroughly and in less time than customers ever believed possible. Customers live happily ever after, satisfied their properties are now clean, healthy and not an eyesore to themselves and the neighborhood. Call Steve, the “King of Clean” at Powerwashing Plus if you need your business or personal property cleaned. Steve has conquered even the most challenging jobs in the Joplin metro area for the past 19 years. Contact us at 417.291.0549 or visit our website at


Joy has been an insurance agent for 18 years and is driven by customer service. “My mother taught me at a young age to treat people with respect and dignity, which is what everyone deserves.” Previously, she worked in retail, food service and secretarial jobs. “I have always worked with the public, and I was hired by an insurance agent as his secretary and learned pretty quickly how to take care of clients.” Today, she writes and services Auto, Home and Life policies for Shelter’s clients. Over the years, Joy has learned to take a day or two for herself to relax.

“I do crafts and love to visit my daughter, Ashleigh, and her husband, Jacob, in Branson and just goof around. I also work in my church with the ladies’ ministry.” She and her husband, Roger, have been married 30 years, and he has a son, Steven, from a previous marriage. They also have two cats, Lily and Penny.

E. 32nd
Ste. 5 •
MO • 417.624.3144


1877 West Mound Street • Carthage, Missouri 417.629.7443 •

Summer is almost here, which means weddings, events and celebrations! The Social Sip is a mobile bar and bartending company that also specializes in event planning and consulting. We have a wide range of knowledge in wine, along with a passion for mixing your favorite cocktails! The Social Sip customizes the ultimate bar experience for weddings, parties, corporate events and other celebrations. They also carry general and liquor liability insurance for the 417, 918, 620 and 479 zip codes! The Social Sip is already approved at your local venue, and they have an elite staff of bartenders waiting to serve you on your big day or special event. Cheers!


23895 State Hwy 96 • Oronogo, Missouri 417.214.8994 •

If you desire to host an elegant wedding or event in a luxe space, 96 Elite is the venue for you. 96 Elite is an 11,000-square-foot building outfitted with stained concrete floors and fashionable, whitewash shiplap walls. The main indoor wedding space includes 26-foot-high ceilings and an elegant 6-foot-tall Swarovski crystal chandelier. Also inside is a gorgeous foyer and spacious upper balcony. Outside, a paved courtyard is surrounded by the beauty of nature and the perfect place for outdoor ceremonies. Walk the pathway and you’ll find the nearby boat dock, rowboat, ornate fountain, gazebo and romantic Heart Pond! Schedule a tour today by calling 417.214.8994.


1515 West 10th Street • Joplin, Missouri 417.717.1161

We are excited to share that the Trackside BBQ Food Truck is officially open! With a full barbecue menu, you won’t want to miss it! We’re traveling all around the area offering the delicious barbecue you’ve come to know and love. The Trackside BBQ Food Truck serves meat by the pound, and you can’t go wrong with our specialty items such as ribs, turkey legs or the Nacho cow, Nacho pig and brisket cheesesteak sandwich. To follow along and see where we’ll be next, visit our Facebook page! As always, you can visit our Joplin restaurant Monday through Friday 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Saturday 11 a.m.-3 p.m.


5203 S. Range Line Road Joplin, MO • 417.659.9009

Diving is your ticket to underwater exploration! The realm beneath the waves is a place that reveals itself to you a little more with each dive. At Extreme Sports Scuba, we have everything you need to explore the wonderful world under the sea. We offer several diving classes for beginner to expert. We also host group diving trips to the beautiful Caribbean! Call us today and find out how learning to scuba dive can change your world!

May 2023 • • 45

F oster A dopt C onnect Laser-focused on Being a Difference-maker for Families

As FosterAdoptConnect (FAC) strives to make a positive impact for as many families as possible, events such as the upcoming inaugural Journey Home A Day in the Life of Foster Care and a mid-summer Sip & Swing fundraiser are vital for this worthwhile organization.

FAC Joplin Branch Director Tom Furrh says the Journey Home program “is a bus tour highlighting local child-serving non-profits and their roles supporting and advocating for foster and adoptive children and the families supporting them.

“It’s designed to leave a lasting impact on participants as they get a glimpse inside the processes that children experience during removal, temporary placement, forensic interviews, court proceedings and the long-term outcomes of children that live through traumatic life-altering events.

“Our goal is for the community to come away with a better understanding of the niche services each of these organizations provide, and which services FAC provides that differ from Children’s Haven, Children’s Center and Children’s Division, as well as the role they serve and why the community must support all these necessary organizations.”

Regarding the Sip & Swing fundraiser slated to take place later in the summer, July 22, at Just A Taste in Webb City, Furrh says, “As a branch, our goal is to raise approximately five percent of our annual

budget. Events like this are vital to meeting our goal.

“Our fundraising events serve to meet a financial need. But our goal is to also bring engaging and innovative events to Joplin that are fun and ultimately better our community at large. This will be our largest fundraiser of the year.

“FAC exists to meet immediate needs of families experiencing or recovering from crisis. We create programming based on an unmet need.

“Think advocacy in rooms where no other advocates will tread, such as financial assistance based on needs rather than an income qualifier and support no matter how many times our

clients fail or fall out of contact and re-engage after six weeks. We still serve them with compassion and urgency.

“Our staff is dedicated to serving each client with excellent care at the same level they would for their own sibling or child.

“Each program works to identify and meet urgent needs regarding adequate housing, employment, financial and health needs. Once a family feels they’ve reached stability, we begin focusing on areas that require advocacy, educational, vocational or legal needs.”

Having FAC as a resource in Joplin is a big deal, and Furrh states, “This is an innovative


organization focused on identifying gaps to fill and serving underserved populations. Each of our programs utilize personfirst principles, meeting our clients where they are and walking alongside them toward resolution or a bettering of their circumstances.

“We offer services not available from any other organization locally without cost or judgement. And we work to empower and improve the lives of every individual that we serve.”

Furrh is thrilled to be involved with this organization. “I’m beyond proud of the

Fast Facts


1802 W. 32nd Street, Suites F & G, Joplin, MO 64804

Phone Number: 417.744.9728


Email address:

Mission: Serving abused and neglected children and the families caring for them.

How It All Began: In 1998, a group of dedicated foster parents recognized a need for stronger support, training and companionship as they pursued the difficult and rewarding work of parenting children in foster care. As more families were drawn to the support and advocacy offered by the group, it quickly matured into FosterAdoptConnect (formerly Midwest Foster Care and Adoption Association), which was incorporated in 2000 as a 501(c)(3) non-profit social service organization. NOTE: At its core, FosterAdoptConnect maintains an “in the trenches with you” approach to serving kids and families. FAC opened the Joplin Branch in 2022 and today has 11 branches across Missouri and Kansas with additional branches in Pittsburg, Kansas, and Branson, Missouri, slated to open in 2023. The Joplin area was served from the Springfield location from 2014 through 2020.

services FAC provides Joplin and surrounding areas and the quality our team delivers to our children and families. I’m honored to be in position to serve children and families in ways that meet needs under the surface.

“We identify and eradicate problems not met with tangible items or basic case management.

We’ll roll up our sleeves and serve a family by cleaning and cooking with them, helping them learn better ways to live alongside their children and partners, identifying goals and working toward them, and working with our clients so they recognize their intrinsic values as humans.”

Structure: FAC is headquartered in Independence, Missouri. CEO Lori Ross casts the organization’s vision of service, while COO Jennifer Johnson leads the presidents of programs and operations. Each branch has an appropriate mix of program staff and leadership, along with a development element focused on community relations and fundraising a percentage of their budget.

By the Numbers: FAC Joplin served just over 150 families in 2022 and are working to serve more than 200 in 2023. Across the entire organization, they serve more than 800 families through their clothing closet each month and more than 1,000 families across the other 12 programs each month in Missouri and Kansas.

May 2023 • • 49 FosterAdoptConnect

Slumber Soiree

239 Galena Street • Oronogo, MO 417.622.1214

If you know first-hand how stressful planning a party can be, especially a child’s party, you’re not alone. Skye Edwards and Brittany Borries recently decided to take the stress out of planning and turn it into something fun and exciting, which is why they created Slumber Soiree.

Slumber Soiree offers a hassle-free, unforgettable sleepover experience. All you do is pick your theme for your party and Skye and Brittany take care of the rest. They set up in the comfort of your own home, then come back the next afternoon to take everything down. They are dedicated to making your event effortless and Pinterest worthy. Skye and Brittany are experienced in party planning and can guarantee your guests will have an amazing one-of-a-kind experience.

Slumber Soiree opened in February and the duo has been busy ever since. “As a mom of four, I know how stressful planning a party is,” said Skye. “I was constantly seeing other moms post online looking for affordable venue recommendations for their kids, so I started looking around for a new fun party option to bring to our area. I figured why stress over finding a venue when we can bring everything right to you in the comfort of your own home. As soon as this new idea popped in my head, I messaged my good friend Brittany Borries, who is known for throwing fun over-the-top birthday parties and asked her to join me on this new adventure, and to my surprise, she said yes! So, here we are. Some have even called us the dream team!”

What might surprise you is these parties are not just for kids. Slumber Soiree offers adult sleepovers for bridal showers, date nights or family gatherings. They also offer many add-ons such as popcorn machine and candy cart rentals, balloon garlands, personalized slumber party favors and more.

The goal for Skye and Brittany is to ensure you have a memorable time with your friends and family. They do this by using top-of-the-line equipment such as beautiful built teepees to cozy mattresses. Their equipment is designed to enhance your comfort, creating an enchanting ambiance that will keep you captivated throughout the night.

Skye and Brittany have many big dreams for Slumber Soiree. They want to expand and start offering services such as spa parties where they bring it right to you. “It has been a lot of fun coming up with unique ideas to make our parties the ultimate experience,” said Brittany. “I had been wanting to start some kind of party planning venture for a while, so when Skye reached out to me, I was in love!”

Another aspect the duo has enjoyed is teaching their kids the odds and ends of being an entrepreneur. “Our kids think we are the coolest moms ever and are constantly begging for their own sleepovers,” said Skye. “They also get to see us start a business from the ground up, and that is a rewarding feeling.”

Slumber Soiree currently serves the Joplin community and will travel up to a 60mile radius for a small additional fee. Skye and Brittany are looking forward to continuing to grow Slumber Soiree in the coming years, offering new and exciting services along the way.

50 Featuring Joplin SMTO
May 2023 • • 51

Our Annual Cutest Baby Contest is one of our favorites because we get to see so many sweet pictures of adorable babies. All these children are precious and delightful!

21ST Annual 4-States Baby Contest Winners

A big thank you to our judges, who oohed and aahed over every picture: Patrick Tuttle, director Convention/Visitors Bureau at City of Joplin; Cavanaugh Studyvin, executive director at Carl Junction Area Chamber of Commerce; Sarah Peavler, owner at The Social Sip; Emily Gibson, communication coordinator, Ronald McDonald House Charities of the 4-States; Alisha Nunnelly, Pro 100 Realtors at Howie’s Home Team; Laura Gullett, development & CMN program manager; Mandy Edmonson, chief photographer-Show Me The Ozarks Magazine; and Kathleen Swift, associate editor-Show Me The Ozarks Magazine.

All proceeds from the entry fees benefit our local Children’s Miracle Network hospital, which is dedicated to supporting sick and injured children. So, enjoy the pictures of the cutest babies in the Four States, and let their smiles brighten your day!


Carter Hickam

With bright blue eyes and curls galore, 22-monthold Carter is our first-place winner. Mom Allie and Dad Hayden say Carter is obsessed with baa-baa black sheep. He has three stuffed sheep he carries around and sleeps with, and he sings the song over and over. He is the sweetest, well-mannered boy who says thank you for everything. Carter loves animals, including his two dogs. He can identify 20 different animals and the sounds they make. Carter loves to be outside and especially likes to splash in water. And as for those curls, he still has them after his first haircut, so it looks like the curls are here to stay!

Legend Hobbs

Legend is something of a miracle baby for Tiffany and Jason Hobbs. The couple have five children from previous marriages and didn’t think they could have another child. But Legend made his appearance in January, completing the family. In a nod to dad Jason’s Choctaw heritage, Tiffany used the headdress to honor Legend’s native culture. At three months old, Legend is smiling and laughing and tries to talk to his family.

2ND place

Rhett Swillum

A boy who is all smiles, Rhett is our third-place winner. His parents, Anissa and Dominic Swillum, say Rhett loves to talk and squeal and is happy all the time. He loves to wave at and feed grass to his grandfather’s horses. At 15 months old, Rhett loves animals and has grown up with his dog Ranger, who helps him get into mischief. Rhett’s favorite foods are spaghetti, ice cream and cookies.


3RD place

Adrianna Lopez

Our Facebook Fan Favorite, 14-month-old Adrianna Lopez, is a miracle baby. Her parents, Francisco and Nicki, tried for a baby for 13 years and experienced two miscarriages before Adrianna arrived. She is a happy girl who is full of energy and smiles. She loves everything Bluey, helping her Nana and watching her sister play basketball.

Honorable Mentions

Eden Brette & Briella Finley Rowdy Lenora Alaya Hayes

Baby ContestEntries

21ST Annual 4-States
Wyatt Avery Hazen Kaizer Michael Willie Madison Cecil Colter and Canyon Brody Lucille Navie Aaliyah River Madison Theo Charlotte Madisyn Henry Charlotte Lennox Lucille Sadie and Sophie Quinn Madeline Sylas Grady Eevee Anastasia Graison Oaklynn Kaeleigh Hayes Ezra Iris Lennox Brynlee Madelyn Blake Cooper RayAnna Mila Mila Mila Mila Mila Mila Stephanie Lawson Eliana Norah Christopher Shelby Gracelyn Heidi Memphis Ellie Mae Oliver Emmalyn Tinsley Theo Knox Tyler

21ST Annual 4-States Baby ContestEntries

Everly Brenlee Archer Levi Oaklynn Emersyn Emersyn Lorenzo Sophia Ty Joseph Janie Harper Avacyn Liliana Crosby Myles Orion and Atlas Hesston Lily Adrianna Brooks Jaxtyn Cohen Wyatt Braylee Everly Aspen Darci Kiara Graysen Mia Brexton Bexley Bexley Bexley Jace Lane Jackson Hallie Jo Bashtyn Scarlett Brixtyn Theodore Jivie Evelyn Colt Casen Charli Theodore Riya Miles Madden Finley Becklyn Kinley Woods Tyler Tyler Jasper Tyler Rhett Oliver

This breakfast casserole is a delicious addition to your Mother’s Day brunch menu, and it’s so easy to prepare anyone can make it, giving Mom a well-deserved break on her special day. It’s a crowd pleaser that can be made in advance and refrigerated overnight before baking it the next morning.

To all the mothers and mother figures out there, Happy Mother’s Day! Your love, care and sacrifices are deeply appreciated and valued.

Mom’s Favorite Breakfast Casserole


1 lb. diced ham

1 Tbs vegetable oil

1 medium sweet onion, chopped


Preheat oven to 350°F.

6 large eggs, lightly beaten

1 tsp of parsley

4 cups frozen shredded hash brown potatoes, thawed

Heat the vegetable oil in a large skillet over mediumhigh heat. Add the chopped onion and sauté for 2-3 minutes until soft.

In a large mixing bowl, combine the beaten eggs, parsley, thawed hash brown potatoes, cheddar cheese, cottage cheese and Swiss cheese. Stir well to combine.

Add the sauteed onion and diced ham to the mixing bowl and stir again until everything is evenly distributed.

2 cups shredded cheddar cheese

1-1/2 cups 4% cottage cheese

1-1/4 cups shredded Swiss cheese

Grease a 13x9-inch baking dish with cooking spray or butter.

Pour the egg and cheese mixture into the prepared baking dish, spreading it out evenly.

Bake the casserole uncovered in the preheated oven for 35-40 minutes, or until a knife inserted into the center of the casserole comes out clean.

Remove the casserole from the oven and let it cool for 10 minutes before cutting and serving.

Fashion Forward • Blue Moon Boutique A Modern Boutique With A Vintage Soul Blue Moon Boutique 613 S. Main Street Downtown Joplin 417.553.0826

Blue Moon Boutique

613 S. Main Street • Joplin, MO • 417.553.0826

Facebook: @Blue Moon Boutique Joplin

Peepers are upbeat, light-hearted readers and blue light-blocking eyewear with unique designs dedicated to the pursuit of fashion as its most fun! Eyewear doesn’t have to be boring! Look no further for the coolest clothing, gifts, décor and locally made art and more. If you have an eclectic, boho style, then Blue Moon will be right up your alley!

The Vogue Boutique

144 S. Main Carl Junction, MO Just 10 minutes from downtown Joplin 417.649.7911

Insta: @thevogueboutiquecj

Facebook:  thevogueboutiquecj

The Vogue Boutique has the perfect Mother’s Day, graduation and wedding gifts! Let our friendly staff help you choose the perfect gift for that special person on your list! Gift wrap is always FREE! The Vogue Boutique has all the favorite hard-to-find lines everyone loves, such as Hunter, Birkenstock, Ecco, Hobo, Liverpool, Mackenzie-Childs, Kendra Scott, Julie Vos, E-Newton, Musse Bath, Tokyo Milk, Archive, Sweet Grace, Mudpie, Tyler, Capri Blue and many more! Let our friendly staff help you choose the perfect outfit or pair of shoes. The Vogue Boutique, 144 South Main Street, in the heart of historic downtown Carl Junction just across from the Post Office. Open Tuesday-Friday 11 a.m.-4 p.m. and Saturday 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Shop online anytime at

The Paw Spa • A Bathhouse for Dogs

323 S. Main • Carthage, MO • 417.359.5190

The Paw Spa Bathhouse for Dogs is THE place to treat your dog to a spa day! Located next to BigDog Boutique on the Carthage square, Paw Spa features full grooming, wash services, nail trims and selfserve wash stations. Everything is provided to wash your own dog, including premium shampoos and conditioners, brushes, towels and chamois, and heated dryers. We even take care of all clean-up! If do-it-yourself isn’t your thing, let us give your dog a bath while you shop around the square. Paw Spa also offers full grooming in a quiet, one-on-one environment. Check us out on Facebook at PawSpaBathhouse or call 417.356.5190.

Pies 417. 437.3135 was 23 years in the making. Owner Twyla Housh sold the barbecue portion of Big R’s in April, but she and her mother Carla kept the pie portion and set up a commercial pie kitchen. Whole pie pickups are at Big R’s, Red Onion Espressoria in Galena, Kansas, and Chatters in Pittsburg, Kansas. No charge for delivery within Joplin city limits.

60 Grooming Wash services Nail trims Self serve stations 417-356-5190
K n o c k o f f t h e s p r i n g p o l l e n w i t h a s p a d a y ! Special Advertising Section
323 S Main Carthage, MO
Big R’s


4 S. Main St.

Webb City, MO 417.717.0073


Facebook & Instagram:


At Society Marketplace, you’ll find custom hats, clothing and furniture, like this beautiful vintage record cabinet featuring a picture of Dolly. The ideas are endless when it comes to customization, and we are here to help put your ideas into action and create oneof-a-kind pieces. Society Marketplace is exactly as the name says—a community of people!

Wig’N Out Boutique

20 S. Main St. • Webb City, MO 417.717.5099 •

Wig'N Out Boutique would love to help you with all your hair goals and needs. Their experienced stylists specialize in wigs, hairpieces and extensions. At Wig’N Out Boutique, you will also find stylish clothing, shoes and accessories for every occasion. And always remember: "We've got you covered from head to toe!" Call today to schedule your consultation.

Zena Suri Alpacas

35401 S. 580 Road • Jay, OK • 804.389.2579

Bring the whole family and walk together among our peacefully grazing alpaca moms and daughters. This spring, bring a picnic or head to the alpaca store for air-conditioning, to sign the guest book or maybe to shop for alpaca items. People come from around the world to visit Zena Suri Alpacas, and some even spend the night.

May means haircuts at Zena Suri Alpacas. Did you ever wonder where Dr. Seuss got ideas for some of his characters? Come and meet our newly shorn characters—buy their fiber, yarn, toys or maybe a beautiful sweater for Mom.

Call 804.389.2579 to arrange an unforgettable experience. We are in Zena, Oklahoma, near Grand Lake.

One 24 Outlet

13105 Kodiak Rd • Neosho, MO • 417.451.1144

Like us on Facebook! • Download our APP!!

One24 Boutique is a unique mother/daughter-teamed store that specializes in the unique. Located in Neosho, this small-town store has gifts, home decor, one-of-a-kind finds and FASHION!! The new “One24 Rags” clothing line was custom designed by the two ladies! Everything in the outlet is 40% off. A portion of all proceeds is donated each month to the KU Bladder Cancer Department to fund a research scholarship.

May 2023 • • 61
Special Advertising Section
62 62

White glove delivery is a term used that was considered part of a normal delivery service years ago. Here at Wayside, we have always offered white glove delivery as part of a free service after purchasing furniture. White glove delivery is bringing the furniture in the customer’s home and placing it where the customer would like it. At Wayside, we go the extra mile, and if you need your old furniture removed, we will do that, as well.

I feel after spending hundreds of dollars on furniture, or even thousands of dollars, a free service like delivery is the least thing we can do to show how much we appreciate your business. This free service may be a thing of the past, but we have always offered it and will continue to in the future. I think that is one thing of many that sets us apart from other stores.

I like to say we will bring your new in and your old out, and all you have to do is enjoy your new furniture. This is always done at no extra charge

From humble beginnings in a relocated airplane hangar, Wayside Furniture is the region’s most trusted furniture store. Family owned in the same location for more than 50 years, they offer a relaxed, fun buying experience. They find people love their free area delivery, no city tax and the biggest in-stock selection. Take it home the same day or take advantage of FREE AREA DELIVERY. Wayside offers great deals and a huge selection.

May 2023 • • 63

Am I on track toward my financial goals?

It’s important to find a financial advisor you can trust to help you get organized. First, your financial advisor will help you identify your goals by addressing some important questions: When do you want to retire? What does retirement look like for you or your family? Secondly, you must determine where you are now on your financial journey: How much have you saved for retirement? What expenses will you have in retirement? Lastly, your financial advisor will determine what steps need to be taken to put a plan in motion.

Your financial advisor will develop a comprehensive wealth management plan based on your risk tolerance and time horizon and create an asset allocation based on your goals. He or she will also help you plan for any potential obstacles during your financial journey. By identifying these ahead of time, you and your financial advisor can mitigate the impact they may have on your plan.

End goal: Your financial advisor helps you focus on your plan while you focus on what’s most important in your life.

At Stifel, our services cover all areas of wealth management, from investment and retirement planning to risk mitigation strategies and issues surrounding estate planning. We specialize in helping our clients develop a comprehensive, cohesive financial strategy that fits their unique needs and enables them to pursue both shortand long-term goals.


Is solar a good investment for everyone?

Though solar is in fact a great investment for most, it is not for all. There are a few reasons why it could not be a good fit for you. However, there are numerous reasons why it is a great mid- to longterm investment for most. Solar is a hedge against inflation. It can save the homeowner hundreds of thousands of dollars over the lifetime of the system. When going solar, there are several incentives available, including tax credits and rebates. If you have been questioning whether solar is a good fit for you, we would be happy to help you find out by running a report on your residence. Give us a call today!

With over 20 years in business, Abernathy

Roofing & Construction provides unmatched workmanship and customer service for the residential and commercial customer. They are the Four States’ trusted roofer and general contractor you can count on. You can rely on Abernathy for roofing, siding, decks, additions, solar and more. With financing available, look no further!

May 2023 • • 65
Pictured here is a ground mount, which is the most efficient way to capture the most production out of your solar system.

How long should I wait until I start wedding gown shopping?

In my professional opinion, you should wait between three and six months before your wedding date to start wedding gown shopping. This is the new industry standard. We recommend brides allow themselves to plan out their bridal shopping experience to allow for the most enjoyable day.

This means scheduling with your “I-do Crew” to ensure those whose opinions you value most are in attendance, as well as selecting how luxurious you want to make it.

Augusta Bridal now offers a selection of bridal experiences for those who really want to make the day they say yes one not to be forgotten.

At Augusta Bridal, we want our customers to feel as if they can conquer the world looking as fabulous as possible. We will help you find “the one” dress that will turn heads and bring out your inner beauty. Augusta Bridal is a bridal shop bringing class and elegance to the Joplin area while staying in touch with today’s trends and styles. We offer bridal, bridesmaids, prom gowns and so much more! Come find “the one” with us.


What are the advantages of receiving injectable treatments in a cosmetic surgery practice?

There are many opportunities in every community to receive these treatments, but I think it’s important to remember these are medications and medical procedures, not just beauty treatments. These treatments are accompanied by risks and side effects, and you need proper education and follow-up care. This is something I do all day, every day. With over six years of experience, I can confidently manage any concerns that come up, and I’m always available for follow-up care.

One thing that distinguishes us from other spas is our medical director, Dr. Maningas. He is a triple board-certified cosmetic surgeon who has personally trained me and oversees all treatments. Additionally, we have a lot of services at our disposal when injectables may not be the best option for you. For instance, we offer a wide range of non-surgical services that provide a comprehensive treatment plan to accommodate your budget, goals and downtime.

We want the best results for our patients, and I’m here to make sure our patients get excellent care and exceptional results.

Maningas Cosmetic Surgery is proud to be the premier cosmetic surgery practice providing services to Joplin, Missouri, and the surrounding Four-State Area. They offer a wide array of surgical and non-surgical procedures, including Breast Augmentation, Breast Lifts, Tummy Tuck, Liposuction and Facelifts, Botox, Dermal and Lip Fillers, Morpheus8, BodyTite, FaceTite, Hair Restoration Treatments and more.

May 2023 • • 67

Gardening for Your PATIO, YARD or GREENHOUSE

There is renewed interest in growing our own food. There is nothing like picking a ripe tomato out of your garden and eating it with the juice dripping down your chin. Many people want to grow their food more organically without chemicals, so growing them at home allows you to control what soil you grow in and what chemicals you do or do not put on your food. Learning about growing vegetables and fruits can be fun for your children and grandchildren, as well. And depending on how much space and time you have, you can grow a small or large amount of food.


For those with a small amount of space, you can plant vegetables, herbs and some fruits in pots on your patio or deck. Vegetables and fruits such as tomatoes, peppers, radishes, lettuce and strawberries are all foods that can be grown easily in pots. There are even small greenhouses that can help you start seedlings. Clay pots are inexpensive and easy to find and can be left in their original color or

they can be painted to match your outside décor. They will absorb a large amount of water, so make sure to water the plants often. While clay pots can be heavy and hard to move, there are resin and foam pots that are lighter and easier to move around. This allows you to move the plants to achieve the right amount of light for each plant you are growing.

For those with more space, raised beds are a wonderful way to plant a garden. Raised beds have many advantages over tilled ground. Raised beds allow you to keep the soil contained and allow you to work easily without bending over so much. The raised beds can be built as low or as high as you want and can be made out of durable wood such as cedar or you can use galvanized tubs or even concrete blocks. Lining the bottom of the raised beds with twigs and leaves will allow you to put in less soil and compost to start your garden. You can read on the University of Missouri Extension Office website about plants that grow well in this region and which plants grow well together.

For those of you who really want to get an early start on planting your garden or extend the growing period, you can purchase a greenhouse. This allows you to start seedlings and over-winter plants. A greenhouse can extend the growing period by several weeks during the spring and fall. A greenhouse can be made from varied materials such as glass or polycarbonate. Having the greenhouse set on a slab or drainage rock will allow you to secure it well and keep it heated and/or cooled for maximum usage. While a greenhouse is a much larger expense than just pots or a raised bed, for the gardening enthusiast, they are the coolest thing ever!

Making your garden decorative and pretty is also fun. Use colored pots on your patio to tie into your décor. For your raised beds, you can plant colorful flowers around the perimeter. These add color and also attract bees, which act as pollinators, which are very useful for vegetable gardening. Decorating around your greenhouse with flowers and colorful pots also adds a decorative touch to your greenhouse and your entire yard.

Hopefully, you will try some of these ideas to grow some of your own food. Start small with some pots on the patio or take a giant leap; fence in some of your yard and put in some raised beds or buy that greenhouse you have been eyeing for years and do some serious gardening! Whichever way you go, have fun growing your own food. Happy gardening!

May 2023 • • 69

Barbara Hicklin Practice pays off for artist

Almost all of us can remember the old joke about “How do you get to Carnegie Hall?” and the famous answer of “practice, practice, practice.” From artist to athlete, the rally cry is the same: practice.

And artist Barbara Hicklin does just that with continuing lessons in watercolor and oil painting. She has developed her work as a representational painter and devotes a number of hours each week to learning more about her chosen mediums.

“I have been a fan of watercolor for many years and collected paintings for years but never had the time to pursue it,” Hicklin said. “Life got in the way. But only recently have I been able to devote the time to learning to paint.”


She began taking lessons at Local Color 12 years ago and said, “Once I got started, I was hooked.”

Since setting that goal, she has studied with local artists Donna Roberts and Paula Giltner, and has taken workshops with such watercolorists as Paul Jackson, Tony Couch and Birgit O’Connor.

Hicklin is inspired by nature and enjoys painting flowers and birds and exploring the myriad of possibilities of still life painting. She shared her painting of Joplin’s flower, the iris, with us as an example of her attention to detail and the beauty she experiences in nature.

Her practice has paid off and she was invited to join the artist cooperative at Local Color about five years ago.

“It has been a great experience and we all learn from each other,” she said. “This has given me an outlet to sell my art, and I am always happy when someone admires and purchases my work.”

Though she doesn’t paint every day, Hicklin is always on the lookout for ideas. And her shift at Local Color every Tuesday keeps her surrounded in art and color. She returns to the gallery to paint with her teacher, Paula Giltner, on Wednesday afternoons.

She herself teaches a class in beginning watercolor on Tuesdays. “I don’t have a ‘quota’ of pieces I want to produce,” she said, “But I am always working on something.”

Hicklin is committed to continuing her goals as an artist. “People often say to me, ‘I wish I had your talent,’ but I believe there is an artist in all of us,” she said. “It just takes a lot of time, work and persistence to find it. My only goal is to keep improving my skills and to just keep painting.”

May 2023 • • 71
Hicklin is a member of the Joplin Regional Artists Coalition, Spiva Center for the Arts, ArtCentral and the Missouri Watercolor Society.
May 2023 • • 73
May 2023 • • 75

Serious illness shows Terra Oxendine benefits of movement

Oxendine after a serious diagnosis in 2019.

“I became ill with pancreatitis due to a few mutations of cystic fibrosis that progressed into the chronic state in 2020,” Oxendine said. “I was limited in what I could do but was free to walk and jog, so I made sure to do that as often as possible.”

She began rapidly losing weight, required a feeding tube and regular pain medication and had regular hospital stays, but was determined to keep moving so she could maintain her strength. She found herself undergoing surgery December 9, 2020, for a total pancreatomy auto islet cell transplant and just a few days afterward took her first walk around the nurse’s station and didn’t stop moving from that point on.

“The doctors kept reiterating how movement would help my body heal,” Oxendine said. “At just three months post-op, I was released to start working out again, when most patients aren’t released for six months to a year, if ever.”

Just 10 months post-surgery, Oxendine ran the Thanksgiving Day Turkey Trot. She ran it again the following year and placed first in her age group. “It may not sound like much to most, but to me, it was such an accomplishment,” she said. “I have come so far in the last two years, and fitness had been a big part of my recovery. I’m so thankful to God for giving me this body and the ability to move.”

And while she was moving physically, Oxendine was also moving her mindset from frustration and fear over her diagnosis to determination in her recovery. “I was determined to find answers, do my research and lean

on God. I will say, I never prayed so much in my life.”

Today Oxendine works out three to five times a week. “I work for Arvest Bank as a commercial lender, so I sit all day long,” she said. “It’s important that I spend time after work doing something physical to keep my body moving, as physical activity keeps my blood sugar levels in check and allows for less insulin use. It all really goes hand in hand when you think about it.”

Oxendine also watches her nutrition and admits a weakness for sour candies. She said, “I try my best to eat healthy but after being on a feeding tube for so long, I take the time to enjoy the foods I eat.”

She keeps an eye on her water intake and eats more protein than carbs. “I do have to watch my carbs now since I don’t have a pancreas,” she explained. “I use insulin when needed but my last checkup showed that my A1C is that of a nondiabetic. The diet and exercise really help me feel better and keep my health in check.”

As for the future, Oxendine’s goals include getting back to some old times for running a mile and bench-pressing weights. She also seeks to grow closer to God.

“Just like the physical focus that I have in the gym, I feel I need that same kind of mental focus in church to strengthen me.”

May 2023 • • 77
“Use it or lose it” has become the battle cry for runner Terra

Parsons, KS

May 9: Breast Cancer Support Group, 3:30 p.m., Cancer Center conference room. Meets second Tuesday of each month. Call 620.235.7516.

May 11: Grief Companions Support Group meets second Thursday of each month, 6 p.m., Elm Haven West. Call 620.704.1110.

Via Christi Hospital - Pittsburg, KS

May 24: Cancer Support Group, 3 p.m., Cancer Center conference room. Meets fourth Wednesday of each month. Call 620.235.7900.

Joplin, MO

Every day: Alcoholics Anonymous Meetings. Call 888.740.4568.

Every Monday: Tips for Living a Healthy Life, 10 a.m.-12 p.m., South YMCA, 3404 W. McIntosh Circle. Free; registration required. Call 417.625.2492.

Every day: 12-Step Recovery Meetings, Alano Club, 1800 E. 30th. Call 417.623.9645.

May 9: Brain Injury Support Group meets every second Tuesday, 12-1:30 p.m., The Independent Living Center, 2639 E. 34th. Contact 417.659.8086 for information and referral.

May 24: Grief Support Group meets every fourth Wednesday of each month, 6-7:30 p.m., Hospice Compassus, 2216 E. 32nd St., Ste. 201. Call 417.623.8272.

Freeman Health System

Joplin, MO

All events are free and open to the public, unless noted; support group meetings are cancelled on days Joplin R-VIII Schools close due to inclement weather.

May 2: Expresso Yourself Breast Cancer Support Group, 5-6 p.m., Joplin Avenue Coffee Company, 506 S. Joplin Ave. Enjoy a coffee courtesy of Freeman Cornell-Beshore Cancer Institute. Our monthly breast cancer support group enables members to share, gain helpful information and useful tips, and form new friendships. Enjoy listening to a special guest from time to time. RSVP to Marcella at 417.347.2662.

May 8: Tournament of Miracles, 8 a.m.-1 p.m., Twin Hills Country Club, 2019 S. Country Club Drive. Join us for the 31st Annual Tournament of Miracles! We’ll have a morning flight teeing off at 8 a.m. and an afternoon flight teeing off at 1 p.m. with lunch served in between at noon. Proceeds from the community event benefit your local Children’s Miracle Network hospital, Freeman Health System, to assist area kids in need. For more information, contact Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals at 417.347.6639.

May 8-11: Freeman Auxiliary Handbag Emporium Sale. Purchase leather and fashion and designer bags at discounted prices at the Freeman Auxiliary Handbag Emporium Sale. Don’t miss out on a variety of wallets, briefcases and accessories. Designers include Michael Kors®, Coach®, Kate Spade® and more. Net proceeds benefit Freeman Auxiliary projects.

May 8: Freeman Auxiliary Handbag Emporium Sale, 8 a.m.-3 p.m., Business Center Conference Rooms.

May 9 & 10: Freeman Auxiliary Handbag Emporium Sale, 7 a.m.-3 p.m., Freeman West Conference Rooms 1W-2W.

May 11: Freeman Auxiliary Handbag Emporium Sale, 7 a.m.-2 p.m., Freeman East Conference Rooms 1E-3E.

May 10: Freeman Cancer Support Group, 2-3 p.m., Freeman CornellBeshore Cancer Institute, 3415 McIntosh Circle. Call Kelley Wheeler at 417.347.4000 for more information.

May 12: Project Pink, 1-4 p.m., Wes and Jan Houser Women’s Pavilion. Just in time for Mother’s Day weekend, Freeman Health System and Breast Cancer Foundation of the Ozarks are teaming up to bring early detection to moms and others, and those who love them. Project Pink –Reaching Every Woman makes it possible for uninsured or underinsured individuals to get a FREE breast health evaluation and mammogram screening. Please bring photo ID. For more information, call the Breast Cancer Foundation of the Ozarks at 417.862.3838 or e-mail Meghan@

May 16: Bariatric Weight-loss Support Group, 5:30-6:30 p.m., Freeman Business Center Conference Rooms, 3220 McClelland Blvd (back entrance). Designed to help those who have had bariatric surgery. For more information, call 417.347.1266.

May 17: Freeman Blood Drive, 9 a.m.-5 p.m., Freeman Hospital West Conference Rooms 1W-4W. Save a life. Donate blood. Appointments are strongly encouraged to manage donor flow. To schedule your appointment, call 417.227.5006 or go to For more information, call 417.347.4603.

May 18: Freeman Caregiver Support Group, 10 a.m.-12 p.m., Freeman Business Center Conference Rooms, 3220 McClelland Blvd (back entrance). Are you a caregiver interested in having a safe haven to share your feelings? Receive information about resources and coping mechanisms, gain advice on what lies ahead, make new friends and learn how to deal with family members. Door prizes will be given out. RSVP to Kathy Mason at or 417.347.8463.

May 20: Joplin Memorial Run. Half-marathon, 10K, 5K, Kid’s Run and Virtual Runner options. Take part in Joplin’s premier and largest running event! The Joplin Memorial Marathon was created to honor the 161 people who lost their lives in the May 22, 2011, tornado and to provide hope to the Joplin community. Visit to register and learn more.

National Alliance on Mental Illness - For information on NAMI, call 417.781.6264 or visit Meetings held at the NAMI building, 219 W. 2nd St., in Joplin.

Every Monday: NAMI Basics, 6-8:30 p.m. A signature education program for parents and caregivers of children and adolescents living with mental illnesses.

Every Tuesday: NAMI Connection Support Group, 6:30-8 p.m.

Every Tuesday: Self Injury Support Group, 5-6 p.m.

Every Tuesday: Family Support Group, 6:30-8 p.m.

Every Wednesday: Dual Diagnosis Support Group, 2:30-3:30 p.m.

Every Wednesday: Post-5/22 Stress Counseling Sessions, 10 a.m.

Every Thursday: Family to Family Class, 6:30-8:30 p.m. For families or caregivers of individuals with severe mental illnesses. Includes current information about most major mental illnesses; information about medications, side effects and strategies for medication adherence; developing strategies for handling crises and relapse; focusing on care for the caregiver.

Neosho, MO

May 22: Caregivers Support Group meets the fourth Monday of each month, 5-6 p.m., Medicalodge, 400 Lyon Drive. Help with care, finances,


insurance, Medicare, Medicaid, respite care, hospice care, day care and support for the caregivers. Sponsors: Avalon Hospice and Medicalodges Neosho. Call 417.451.2544.

Nevada, MO

May 2: Skin Cancer Screening Clinic, 8-11 a.m., Hospital Mezzanine. Nevada Regional Medical Center will host a free Skin Cancer Screening Clinic. Dr. Jacqueline Youtsos will conduct the clinic and advise participants of any concerns that might be present. In order to register for this short screening, the public is asked to call 417.448.2101.

May 6: Birth and Beyond Class, 8:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m., Hospital Mezzanine. Nevada Regional Medical Center will offer a four-hour class covering childbirth, breastfeeding and infant care for a woman who is in her last trimester. Especially suited for women who are giving birth for the first time, this class covers all the basics of the birthing experience. For more information or to register, visit or call 417.448.2101.

May 12: 20th Annual Caring with Pride Golf Tournament, 8 a.m., Frank E. Peters Golf Course. The NRMC Foundation hosts a competition that features three-person teams competing for prize money awarded to the top four teams in each of three flights. A light breakfast and lunch is provided. To register, visit or call 417.448.2101.

May 19: Nevada Community Blood Drive, 1-6 p.m., Hospital Mezzanine. Help replenish the blood supply used to meet the needs of our hospital patients. To register for a specific time, call 417.448.2101. Walk-ins are welcome.

May 23: Rich Hill Family Medical Clinic Screenings, 11 a.m.-noon, Kern Senior Center. Free screenings every fourth Tuesday of the month: blood pressure, plus this month’s focus screening: glucose readings. Takes place at the Kern Senior Center in Rich Hill.

Integris Baptist Regional Health Center, Grove, OK

May 9 & 23: Depression Support Group meets the second and fourth Tuesday of each month, 2 p.m., Northeastern Tribal Health System Conference Room, 2301 Eight Tribes Trail. Call 918.675.2093.

INTEGRIS Baptist Regional Health Center, Miami, OK - For more information, visit

Every Tuesday: Free blood pressure and glucose screenings provided by INTEGRIS Regency Home Care and Hospice. First Tuesday: Commerce Nutrition Center, 10:30-11:30 a.m. Second Tuesday: Nine Tribes Tower, 1011 a.m. Third Tuesday: Miami Senior Center, 10-11 a.m. Fourth Tuesday: INTEGRIS Baptist Village, 9-10 a.m.

May 2: Alzheimer’s Support Group meets first Tuesday monthly, 11 a.m., Generations fourth floor visiting room. Call 918.542.3391.

Crisis Text Line Text 741741



May 2023 • • 79 Assisted Living | Memory Support CARE YOU NEED IN THE COMMUNITIES YOU LOVE Restaurant-style dining Customized wellness plan Events and activities Private apartments Weekly housekeeping Professional staff 24/7 Oak Pointe of Carthage 300 W Airport Dr., Carthage, MO 64836 (417) 356-3861 Oak Pointe of Neosho 2601 Oak Ridge Exn., Neosho, MO 64850 (417) 815-6235
Free 24/7 support for those in crisis to create a plan to stay safe and healthy.
Suicide Prevention Lifeline
has been designated as the new three-digit dialing code

Know the signs of stroke & what to do

Did you know stroke is considered a brain attack?

Much like a heart attack, every minute counts when symptoms begin. Each minute without blood flow results in the death of two million brain cells.

Do you know the warning signs of stroke? Rapid intervention is crucial in the treatment of stroke. It could save your life and decrease deficits caused by a stroke.

BE FAST is an easy way to remember and identify some of the most common symptoms of a stroke. Recognition of these symptoms may save a life.

B: Balance – Loss of balance or dizziness

E: Eyes – Vision changes

F: Face – Facial drooping or severe headache

A: Arms – Is there weakness or numbness in one or both arms?

S: Speech – Trouble speaking or confusion? Is speech slurred?

T: Time – Time to call 911. Time is brain –meaning time is of the essence when treating a stroke. With each moment a stroke goes untreated, the nervous tissue in the brain is rapidly and irreversibly damaged.

If someone complains of a sudden, severe headache or describes it as “the worst headache of my life,” they should seek medical attention immediately.

Stroke is a sudden brain dysfunction caused by a disturbance in the brain’s blood circulation and is the leading cause of long-term disability. The deficits caused by a stroke depend on the area of the brain affected.

There are two types of stroke: ischemic stroke and hemorrhagic stroke. Ischemic strokes account for more than 80-87% of all strokes and are typically caused by obstruction of cerebral blood vessels. Some of the causes of hemorrhagic strokes include the following: head injuries, cerebral aneurysm, high blood pressure, blood vessel abnormalities, blood or bleeding disorders, drug abuse and brain tumors.

When it comes to stroke, rehabilitation is an important part of the overall recovery strategy. Although individuals may survive the initial stroke, many are left with disabilities that might have been minimized had they received treatment quicker. Approximately 60 percent of stroke victims are left with diminished use of an arm or leg. Some suffer from aphasia, a language disorder that can affect a person’s ability to express and understand written and spoken language.

Learn the warning signs and get help immediately! You may save your own life or the life of someone else.

Here are some of the risk factors you can help control to potentially prevent a stroke:

• High blood pressure

• High cholesterol

• Smoking

• Heavy alcohol use

• Overweight or obese

• High blood sugar levels

Freeman Health System is proud to be accredited as a Level II Stroke Center. The Freeman stroke team is highly trained to quickly evaluate, diagnose and treat stroke patients. Freeman works in cooperation with the area’s ambulance services and has met standards to improve outcomes.

To learn more about stroke and stroke education, go to


Kelley King, RN, BSN, is a Freeman accreditation coordinator. She graduated from Pittsburg State University with a bachelor’s degree in nursing. A registered nurse for 34 years, she has been with Freeman since 2004. Kelley works closely with Dr. Gulshan Uppal, the Freeman Stroke Medical Director, to oversee and manage the stroke program.

Freeman Accreditation Coordinator

The Miracle of Healing: How best healing practices will help Mark Boyd walk again

In July 2021, Mark Boyd became a double amputee when a diabetes-related complication led to the amputation of his right leg below the knee.

He had already been through the process of amputation, healing and learning to walk on a prosthesis once after losing his left leg in January 2020 (read his full story in the November 2020 edition of Show Me The Ozarks). While he was still working through the grief process of losing his left leg, what seemed like a harmless wrinkle in the tongue of the right shoe caused a diabetic wound on his foot that would not heal. The wound led to an emergency lifesaving surgical amputation.

Beverly Helms, owner of Grand Prosthetics & Orthotics LightWeight Artificial Limbs & Braces, stresses the importance of proper healing to new amputees.

“We treat the whole person,” Beverly said. “We strive to realistically build their confidence in their own ability, encourage them to persevere and comply with rehab care. Our goal is to keep to a minimum the time needed between healing of tissue and fitting of the prosthesis, thus preventing deformities…Then our goal of fitting as soon as possible is usually met 2-3 months after the amputation.”

To better prepare amputees for the healing process, Beverly teaches continuing education to physical therapists, nurses, physicians and other healthcare providers to help prepare recent amputees for their approaching journey into life with a prosthetic limb.

“We believe in a team approach for maximizing their rehab potential post amputation,” Beverly said. “That’s why I volunteer my time for these classes. I feel if one amputee is helped to retain their ability to ambulate, the good Lord has paid me in full.”

Beverly teaches that vigorous education and patient compliance are required for

the amputee to reach the maximum rehab potential. Here are a few tips for the best possible healing:

• Eat protein that “still looks like the protein God made,” such as nuts, eggs, meat and fish, and is not fried. “Whole, natural protein food sources seem to be the most helpful to heal wounds. We are what we eat, and it takes protein to heal protein, and our tissue is protein,” Beverly said.

• Exercise extending the remaining hips and knees every 4 hours to increase strength and decrease contractures.

• Elevate by resting the residual limb on a slightly elevated rigid surface always while sitting. NO pillows under the knee!

• Encourage the amputee to get out of the wheelchair every hour and stand well supported and extend every joint.

• Do not flex the residual limb while it is wrapped with a stump shrinking device.

• Massage residual limb every 4 hours and cleanse it to decrease adhesions, increase healing, circulation, and the patient’s awareness and acceptance of the residual limb.

• Above-knee amputees are best served by becoming ambulatory with walker or crutches in order to become ambulatory with a prosthesis.

“We prefer to see the amputee just after the sutures are removed,” Beverly said. “When the amputee achieves the above, is no longer swollen, overly sensitive, weak, contracted, overly obese, scabbed, adhered excessively, can accept this differently challenged state, and has the motivated excitement needed to competently master

wearing a prosthesis, and is able to get themself out of their chair alone and have good balance, depending on the rules imposed by their insurance we then cast for, fit and deliver a custom prosthesis designed specifically for their specific needs.”

For Mark Boyd, the road to recovery is ahead of him once again, but he feels empowered to do the work and get back on two feet again. As a father of five and grandfather of seven, he said his greatest motivation comes from his family.

May 2023 • • 81 5 E a s t 1 4 t h S t G r o v e O k 7 4 3 4 4 A R T I F I C I A L L I M B S & B R A C E S 918 786 4626 ) ( T I F I E D L I C E N S E D H E L M S FA M I LY O W N E D & O P E R AT E D - F R E E C O N S U LTAT I O N S I am glad a f ri e nd told me abou t... “ “ www .G rand P ro. com & O rthoti cs & O

AVOCADOS Lots of nutrition, but know your limits

As always, everyone’s health is different, and you never know how changing your diet could change your health. Always consult a doctor or nutritionist before making dietary changes.

Let’s start with the positives: avocados are rich in nutrients. If you’re looking for a good source of fat, carbohydrates or fiber, avocados might have something for you. While it’s hard to get an exact number of the nutrients in avocados (after all, they can come in many different sizes), some sources say a medium avocado has 22 grams of fat, and those 22 grams happen to be split between mostly monosaturated fats and polysaturated fats. You can also expect avocados to have about half of that amount in carbohydrates, the majority of which is fiber. This means many low-carb diets can include some avocado without breaking their mission.

While avocados are packed with nutrients, they’re also packed with calories. A medium-size avocado can have 200 calories, meaning someone on a 2,000-calorie budget eats roughly 10 percent of their daily calories when they have a medium-size avocado. If you’re struggling with your weight, you probably want to temper how much avocado you’re eating since those calories can really add up. Of course, the flip side is if you’re looking to build a lot of muscle, that warning won’t hold as much weight since you’ll be wanting a source of good fat anyway. Do be warned avocados also have a few grams of saturated fats, which can contribute to the buildup of cholesterol, though the risk of this isn’t very high if you eat avocados in moderation.

One interesting thing I found in preparing this article was that avocados have a chemical folate. Folate is a B vitamin that helps circulation and the delivery of necessary nutrients to the brain, and low folate levels have been linked to depression. While depression can come on for a variety of reasons, a folate deficiency can be a risk factor for depression. This doesn’t mean avocados are some sort of cure for depression, but ensuring you consume enough folate can help decrease your risk for it.

In no way am I trying to stop anyone from eating avocados – I’m probably just as guilty of going overboard on them as anyone else.

May 2023 • • 83
In the last few decades, avocados have exploded in popularity, and for good reason. Avocados not only pair well with many foods but also are packed with tons of nutrients. Avocados are also not a perfect food, and while they’re healthy, their reputation as a healthy food can give you tunnel vision when it comes to your goals, and you want to make sure you keep your health goals in mind when eating any food, no matter how healthy it is.

The Great


A Man Called Fish

His name is Joe. Those who know him call him Fish. He is a 95-year-old World War II veteran. He has earned his nickname. Those who know him say when spring comes, the weather is good and the crappies are biting, Fish will be out there fishing.

It is early on a Memorial Day morning. Not many others are out on the water yet. The sun is rising over the forested hills surrounding the lake. Birds are beginning to sing. Crows are cawing at each other. Deer come to the edge of the water for a drink. On a distant hill, a turkey gobbles.

An award-winning magazine and newspaper writer, radio host and blogger for more than 40 years. His book, “Seasons: Stories of Family, God and the Great Outdoors,” is available on Amazon and Amazon Kindle.

Fish is alone in the old aluminum boat he bought in 1960. His wife used to come with him. He tells folks she went home to heaven a few years ago. His kids and grandkids all fished with him from this boat. Some live in other states now. Others are just too busy with life. Sometimes, an old fishing buddy will go with him. Other times, he takes a young man from his church. Mostly, he goes by himself.

The boat is dented, scratched and patched, but he loves it. The same 25- horsepower Evinrude he put on it all those years ago still powers it across the water. There is no modern technology on this boat.

The sun reflects on the water as his wrinkled hands struggle to tie on a crappie jig. Fish has done this many times. It just takes a little longer to do it now. He still uses the same rod and reel his wife bought him long ago. He cast the jig to where he knows the crappie will be. It is not long before he catches his first crappie. It is clipped to his fish stringer and hung over the side of the boat.

A few hours later, the last crappie of his limit is reeled in and added to the stringer. Fish looks up and sees an eagle sitting on a limb. It is watching him. He smiles and thanks God for another day on the water He blessed him with.

Rather than starting the old boat and heading back to the boat ramp, he sits there. After all the years, he still wonders why he got to come back home from war when so many of his buddies did not. He has never talked much about what it was like fighting for all of us over there. No one knows what he saw. The blood. The wounds. The bodies. They do not hear the bombs, the bullets or the screaming. It is all hidden. A tear rolls down his cheek. He wipes it away and starts the old motor. I would bet this will not be the last fishing trip. He will be back as long as his health will let him.

When he gets home and pulls into his driveway, he stops to look at Old Glory proudly flying on a pole in his front yard. It is there every day, not just on Memorial Day. He cleans the fish and then fries a couple of them for lunch. He will tell you that you cannot beat fresh, fried crappie. The rest will go in the freezer with all the other crappie he has caught. They will be shared with friends from his church, especially his young fishing buddy.

Part of his afternoon on this Memorial Day is spent at the graves of his wife and son. He sits and talks to them both for an hour or two. He tells them he loves and misses them. The rest of the afternoon is spent at the local military cemetery. He will honor not only those who served and lost their lives during World War II but all wars. Standing in front of the graves of men he knew, he salutes each one. Then he says thank you, God bless you and wipes a tear from his eye. What will you be doing on the long Memorial Day weekend? Will you be camping, fishing, playing in the water or enjoying a backyard cookout? Take time to honor, in some way, the men and women who gave their lives so you have the freedom to do those things. Also, give thanks to those who fought for us and got to come home. Men like a man called Fish.


Whether it is fishing, hunting, hiking or camping, it is good to get away. Our lives are so fast paced. When you’re on the water with a fishing pole in your hands, in the woods with a bow or gun, sitting by a campfire or hiking up a hill, you can finally slow down. It is kind of like hitting the reset button.


Here is a different way of cooking the fish you catch that you might want to try, or maybe not. Take a freshly filleted fish and lay it on some heavy aluminum foil. Add a couple of dabs of butter and a splash of lemon juice. Maybe some fish seasoning to taste. Fold the foil tightly and place it on the upper rack of the dishwasher and run through one cycle, or two cycles if it is a large fish.

The dishwasher steam broils the fish in the foil. It is supposedly delicious. I do not know since my wife hasn’t let me try it yet. I told her this novel culinary concept was devised by former Tennessee Senator Howard Baker, and you can trust anything a politician tells you, can’t you?

Food For Thought

May 2023 • • 85
“Our flag does not fly because the wind moves it. It flies with the last breath of each soldier who died protecting it.”
- Unknown
“Man must feel the earth to know himself and recognize his values … God made life simple. It’s man who complicates it.”
- Charles A. Lindbergh

THE RITE OF PASSAGE: Holding a Crawdad!

The waters of the Ozarks are finally getting warm enough to wade in. This month might not be swimming weather yet, but outdoor enthusiasts are dipping their toe in the water for the first wade fishing, stepping into a kayak and some Missouri Stream Team monitoring.

I think it was natural for me to choose a biology graduate thesis on the stream bank, for I honestly was steering a boat the same summer I was learning to ride a bike. The smell of a minnow bucket is a home fragrance to me the same as cornbread in the oven is to some people. My master’s thesis on a riparian songbird would reinforce my ties to Ozark stream life and the health of the riparian area for my entire life. I was also fortunate to assist other graduate students’ work on stinkpots, hellbenders, suckers, madtoms, largemouth bass and sculpins, and all

these field studies had their foundation in the health of the creeks and rivers. I get excited about creek life just thinking about it!

I have written a lot in the past about Missouri Stream Team and its citizen science connections to not only the aquatic life my biologist peers have investigated, but the direct link to our drinking water. Missouri Stream Team has been around for nearly 35 years, and anyone interested in this volunteer effort might look at or drop by the Shoal Creek Conservation Education Center to pick up information.

One of the most popular activities with monitoring the stream is for the volunteers to examine the macro invertebrates in three adjacent areas on the streambed floor. We survey these little critters that are large enough for

Field notes by Jeff Cantrell, photos courtesy of the MO Dept. of Conservation

viewing without a microscope; these are the crustaceans, isopods, aquatic insects, etc. I mention invertebrates for the animals of study lack backbones. We later sort them out and tally their numbers into three categories pertaining to how sensitive they are to water disturbance and pollution. They will be sensitive to pollution, somewhat tolerant or tolerant. Mayflies and stoneflies are prime examples of high-quality water, while leaches and some worms let us know they thrive in poor quality (although a few might still be found in higher values).

Most of our crawdads (crayfish) fall into the middle category. Although I always highlight the sensitive inverts in school, master naturalist trainings and public programs, it’s the crayfish that usually get the attention. I remember back to my kindergarten summer, and I played with crawdads May through October. They were captivating. Fifty years later, I may use crawdads in a tub to introduce macro inverts and stream life to youth from Barry to Vernon counties. The key might be how to first hold a crawdad. Once held, these freshwater crustaceans give a young scientist a critical observation skill to scrutinize the animal more closely.

They may be in the middle category of pollution sensitivity, but they are vital to the workings of the stream and river ecosystem. Missouri has 36 different types and eight have small ranges restricted to just portions of our state. They recycle animal and plant materials on the streambed and their role in the food chain events feeds hundreds of birds, mammals, native fishes, reptiles, etc. They are truly a keystone species.

When stream team volunteers, educators and anglers examine macro inverts, they are careful to release all critters back to where they were collected. And captive crayfish should be handled the same way; it’s very important for crawdads to not be released in other watersheds. We have an engaging little Guide to Missouri’s Crayfishes booklet at the nature center. If you know of a homeschool parent, fisherman, naturalist, etc., who might be interested in the publication, please have them stop by the Shoal Creek Conservation Education Center in Joplin. We are located on the banks of Silver Creek and Shoal Creek where the Neosho Midget Crayfish and Northern Crawfish thrive. We teach and practice good water quality conservation to support the citizens of Joplin and other communities in our watershed and cool critters like the Bristly Cave Crayfish near our groundwater.

Have a great time outside and enjoy our water resources. – Jeff

May 2023 • • 87
Jeff Cantrell is an outdoor educator and naturalist and may be reached at

ASCENT’s Program Manager Carl Perkins Loses Battle with Cancer

For 27 years, ASCENT Recovery Residences’ Program Director Carl Perkins has been a part of Executive Director Teddy Steen’s life. Perkins lost his year-long battle with an aggressive cancer April 10.

“What am I going to do?” Steen said. “I was like his bossy older sister, and now I can’t call and yell at him. I just can’t imagine my life without Carl. He has been by my side for 27 years of my life.”

Steen first met Perkins in 1996 when he was in her group and was her client when she worked at Family Recovery Services. Even though he ended up in prison for a couple of years, she stayed connected with him by mail and sent him weekly sermons from her church.

“I saw something in him, and he was very talented,” she said. “He played the guitar, was very bright and had vast knowledge of the Bible. When he was released from prison, he became a full-time father to three of his children and was determined to give them a good life. He also obtained a GED and resumed his commitment to his faith and became a very active member of his church.”

Enrolling in Missouri Southern State University at the age of 38, Perkins graduated in 2011 with a B.A. in sociology. In 2017, he obtained a master’s in social work from Missouri State University. He eventually became second in command at ASCENT, which led to becoming the program director. He was also trained in EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing) therapy and was setting up an office at the Recovery Outreach Community Center (ROCC) to provide counseling and trauma therapy at no charge to people in recovery until his diagnosis put that on hold.

“I told him to major in psychology or sociology, and when I got my recovery house, he could come work for me,” Steen said. “It was a few years until that happened, but on day one, in 2008, he was a part of ASCENT. At first, he volunteered and has done wonders at ASCENT. The lives he touched and helped transform are numerous and most of them give Carl much of the credit for that change.”

What endeared Perkins to Steen also annoyed her. Because he was so intelligent, he had to have full knowledge of every detail of situations. That was the opposite of the spontaneous Steen.

“He was one of a kind, such a man of faith and so bright,” Steen said. “His thought processes really made you think. He would infuriate me and hung up on me many times because he didn’t want to talk anymore about what we were talking about.”

In May 2022, Perkins was diagnosed with stage 4 Intrahepatic Cholangiocarcinoma, a cancer in the bile ducts and liver. Until his hospital stay the last two weeks of his life, he didn’t take pain pills during his journey with the cancer.

“He was so courageous in his battle, and that is how I would like to be if facing death,” Steen said. “He knew from day one what the prognosis was and that he was facing death. He said ‘if God wants me to live, I live. If His will is not, then I won’t.’”

Steen’s last visit with Perkins was in the hospital a few days before he died. She was talking to him, and she asked if he could hear her.

“I can hear you,” he answered.


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Articles inside

ASCENT’s Program Manager Carl Perkins Loses Battle with Cancer

pages 90-91

THE RITE OF PASSAGE: Holding a Crawdad!

pages 88-89

A Man Called Fish

pages 86-87

AVOCADOS Lots of nutrition, but know your limits

page 85

The Miracle of Healing: How best healing practices will help Mark Boyd walk again

pages 83-84

Know the signs of stroke & what to do

page 82

Gardening for Your PATIO, YARD or GREENHOUSE

pages 70-81

Mom’s Favorite Breakfast Casserole

pages 60-63, 65-69

21ST Annual 4-States Baby Contest Winners

page 54

Slumber Soiree

pages 52-54

F oster A dopt C onnect Laser-focused on Being a Difference-maker for Families

pages 50-51

Helping Adult Learners Build Skills is Primary Focus of Joplin NALA

pages 45-49

Courtney’s Candles & Creations

pages 42-44

Joplin Floor Designs

page 41

Joplin Memorial Run Looks to the Future While Remembering Lives Lost

pages 38-39

‘Orchid of the Ozarks’ Celebrating the iris, Joplin’s city flower

pages 32-33

Spotlights Oklahoma Business

pages 29-31

EVENTS Northeast OK

page 28

ShowMe Dining Guide

pages 26-27

ShowMe Dining Guide

pages 24-25

Where it’s ‘COOL’ to be YOU!

pages 22-23

The Okee Dokee Brothers

pages 19-21

Kicking off a summer schedule of musical events at the Cornell Complex

page 18

What’s Happening Calendar of Events SMTO

pages 13-17

in every edition

pages 7-12
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