Arts, Culture and History

Ozark Actors Theatre Celebrates 25 Years

Ozark Actors Theatre’s 25th Anniversary season will open with the family favorite The Wizard of Oz, a musical never before seen on the Ozark Actors Theatre main stage. The side-splitting farce Noises Off, also new to the Ozark Actors Theatre stage, will be the second show. The professional season will close with The Diviners, a deeply moving drama that Ozark ... Read More »

Interest in Missouri State Penitentiary Tours Heating Up

In 2011, visitors came in droves to get locked up inside the Missouri State Penitentiary. The 2011 season saw a 47 percent increase in tour attendance – more than 17,000 people stepped through the Missouri State Penitentiary gateway and heard the cool clang of the metal bars slam shut behind them. What happens once inside the walls of the Missouri ... Read More »

Mark Twain, For President?

A new candidate has emerged in this year’s presidential race, and while his thoughts and theories aren’t always politically correct, they are always entertaining. The Mark Twain for President Campaign is making its way across the U.S., and a lengthy promotional tour is scheduled this summer in Twain’s hometown, Hannibal. You can hear Twain’s political views at the Planter’s Barn ... Read More »

Historic Homes Offer a Peek at Private Lives

Snooping around a grand old house can be a wonderful way to spend a couple of hours, especially if the long-gone owners were interesting people, and all their stuff is still there. I recently had the opportunity to investigate two such residences: the castle-like home of John Homer Bothwell, just north of Sedalia; and artist Thomas Hart Benton’s home in ... Read More »

Victorian Santa Makes a Lasting Impression in Saint Charles

The 37th annual Christmas Traditions festival is in full swing, having kicked off in Saint Charles the day after Thanksgiving.  But fret not, there’s still plenty of time to enjoy this year’s celebration, which continues until the afternoon of Christmas Eve. As in years past, we have more than 30 Christmas Legends characters roaming about the Main Street historic district, ... Read More »

History Nerd?

Go ahead, call me a history nerd. It’s okay, I often refer to myself that way. You see, I have a real love for history.  Yes, I do possess an ability to recall names and dates, but mostly I think about history in terms of stories; stories of love, passion, murder, intrigue, war and sabotage.  History is every movie you’ve ... Read More »

Tradition Continues in Arrow Rock

The J. Huston Tavern, Arrow Rock.

Last weekend, I had the chance to visit a special open house for the J. Huston Tavern in Historic Arrow Rock. Located in the heart of Arrow Rock — the town itself is designated as a National Historic Landmark — the tavern has been serving travelers since the days of the Santa Fe Trail in 1834. Now under the management ... Read More »

1836 Missouri State Penitentiary — Hard Hat Tours

Tourists wearing hard hats visit the Missouri State Penitentiary

  Early Inmate at MSP A visit to Jefferson City, Missouri, isn’t complete until you tour the original, 1836 Missouri State Penitentiary, located seven blocks east of the Capitol. In 1967, the “Missouri State Pen” was named the “bloodiest 47 acres in America” by Time magazine. The Missouri State Penitentiary (MSP) was decommissioned in 2004. It is open to the ... Read More »

Christmas Past Comes to Life in Saint Charles

The Lewis & Clark Fife Drum Corps lead the Santa parade.

Imagine, for just a moment, you’re a kid again.  You wake up one morning and say to your parents, “Guess what guys?  Today I get to be in a parade with Santa and Mrs. Claus!  Wow… that’s so awesome … I can’t wait to ride in the carriage.  Oh, geez, I hope they’ll let me pet the horse!  Do you ... Read More »

The Missouri Capitol . . . Where the Front Isn’t

Missouri Capitol--South Side

The Missouri Capitol is a marvelous place to visit. I stroll around the outside and/or through the hallways nearly every weekday (yes, even in winter). I often see something I hadn’t noticed before. Let me tell you about it. But wait!  (Now I sound like a TV infomercial: “but wait . . . call now and receive, as our special ... Read More »