2016 Exhibits/Activities

2016 Exhibits/Activities

New to the Festival this year are several events/activities that you’ll want to be sure to see, in addition to returning events.

Links to more detailed information are provided.



2016 Youth Musical Talent Competition Logo

Youth Musical Talent Competition




Dutch Oven Workshop



Treadle Sewing Machine Demonstration –

This year, as an added feature, Judy Jo Protiva, co-owner of Peace Valley Poultry, will be demonstrating treadle sewing machine use on the mezzanine of the West Plains Civic Center from noon to 3 p.m. Friday and Saturday, along with friends who have offered to help. JudyJo is a wife, mother, and grandmother, who started using treadle sewing machines in the early 1980s. It had been a dream of hers, and she was finally able to find a suitable machine.

Before she worked the kinks out of her beginning style, she started sewing pants for an exercise group. That, together with her delight in sewing for others and herself, put her learning into high gear. She only sewed for the group for a few months, but continued sewing on the treadle. Soon the wheel would hum as it rotated smoothly, the needle sewing creations.

A year or two later she sewed a tipi with her machine. She bought the canvas from a canvas company in Denver and sewed yards and yards of double seams, forming the fabric into a tipi cover. On the day she celebrated raising it, she met Jim Protiva, the man of her dreams, and they married 1½ years later.

JudyJo had always wanted to sew for her own children, and soon there were four children. Sometimes she would sew into the night to make the dresses and shirts for her family, a quicker process when it was quiet. Her oldest, Beth, remembers hearing the sound of the whirr of the treadle machine as she went to sleep. As these children grew up playing on and with the treadle, they developed a natural rhythm with it, until when they were old enough to sew, they could handle the machine efficiently.

To JudyJo, the treadle not only represents a means of productivity, but also a sense of nurturing and caring for others that is passed down through the generations. JudyJo hopes to be sewing on the quilt for her granddaughter, Laura, during the demonstration.

Come visit and learn more about these machines which are still used in many places today.

A treadle is a part of a machine which is operated by the foot to produce reciprocating or rotary motion in a machine such as a sewing machine, weaving loom, grinder, powering water pumps, or to turn wood lathes, to name a few. They allow human power of machinery without the need for electricity. Many of the early sewing machines were powered by a treadle mechanism. The treadle was operated by pressing down on it with a foot, or both feet, to cause a rocking movement. This movement spins a large wheel on the treadle frame, connected by a thin leather belt to smaller driving wheels on the sewing machine.



2014 Festival Bucket Brigade 2

Chief Joe Auffert’s Bucket Brigade Returns

Chief Joe Auffert and friends from the Howell Rural Fire Department will once again provide fun and excitement for all who wish to participate. Young competitors are the focus of this event, but all ages are welcome!


Bucket Brigade competitions will take place at the “fire house” which will be placed on East Main near the Children’s Activities area.  Events are scheduled for 10 a.m., 2 p.m., and 5 p.m., both Friday and Saturday.


A bucket brigade is a method for transporting items where items are passed from one stationary person to the next. The method was important in firefighting before the advent of hand pumped fire engines, whereby firefighters would pass buckets to each other to extinguish a blaze. This technique is still common where using machines to move water, supplies, or other items would be impractical.

Come join in what is probably the wettest event at the Festival!


Street Performers new feature of Festival 2016


Officials with the Fine Arts Academy at The Avenue Theatre in West Plains will provide street performers throughout the 22nd annual Old-Time Music, Ozark Heritage Festival in downtown West Plains, Mo. Keep your eye out for Mark Twain and the characters from “Tom Sawyer” roaming through the Festival campus.


The Fine Arts Academy mission is to encourage young people to enjoy and participate in the arts, and teach them skills which will help develop their theater abilities, self-confidence and respect for themselves and others; to help young people see the many opportunities available to them; and to show how the world can be a better place through appreciation of the arts.


The Academy offers after-school programs, private tutoring, workshops, and evening classes in acting and technical aspects of theater. Public performances to showcase what has been learned will also be presented. While young people, (through high school age) are the target audience, occasional workshops for adults may be offered.


“We are very pleased to once again be performing in conjunction with the festival,” said Avenue Theatre representatives.  “Just as the festival celebrates our musical heritage, we will be celebrating our theatrical heritage by introducing street performances.”




Returning favorites, with links to their full page descriptions:

2014 Festival Roe Family 3

Main Stage



2nd Stage


2007 Festival - Cooking Stage (8)

Cooking Stage


MuleJump1-2 copyColor

Mule Jump Competition


2014 Festival Bed Turning

Quilt Show and Bed Turnings


Outdoor Skills Workshops


2009 Festival - Fiddlers' Frolic (4)

Fiddlers’ Frolic


2009 Festival - Square Dance (16)

Square Dances


2007 Festival -Jig Dance Competition (14)

Bob Holt Jig Dance Competition


2008 Festival - Children (2)

Children’s Activities


2010 Festival - Artisans (5)

Artisans and Demonstrators






Check the 2014 Exhibits/Activities tab for a look at previous events.


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