by President Beverly Sullins
Good weather, good music, good food and most of all approximately 225 good people were a part of the 21st Annual Papinville picnic held Saturday, Sept. 22, 2012. The crowd enjoyed perfect weather as well as many activities.
Highlighting the day was the tour to the Harmony Mission site. Two horse drawn wagons driven by Don Pippin and Tony Landis and one pick-up and wagon driven by John Stewart transported between 70 and 80 people on two tours to the historical site where Harmony Mission was established. The site went on to be the first county seat of Bates County, known as Batesville.
Nothing is left there but just the land but many found it exciting just to visit and place their feet on this historic spot. Phyllis Stewart guided the tour and told about the mission and those people who were there to establish it. Jerry and Angela Stangel are owners of the property and we thank them for letting us tour their property. Jerry and Phyllis were able to answer any questions that came up.
After the tours returned, people were able to visit with Chief Jack Whitehorn from the Osage Indian tribe and Jack York who had displayed artifacts he had found on the Harmony Mission site and surrounding area.
Everyone enjoyed listening to the “Heartfelt” band which played and sang all afternoon. The music has always been a big part of our picnic through the years.
The late Jim Coonce and his family performed the music as “Mid-Western Music Makers and Singers.” Jim would be so proud that his family members and others continue this tradition now as “Heartfelt” under the direction of Wesley and Sharon Danner.
Other activities enjoyed throughout the day were; bingo, cakewalk, silent auction, pie auction and good down home visiting.
The teachers and students of District 7 gathered in front of the school and had their picture taken. We were honored to have three teachers present: Erma Stephens and Pearl Wilson who taught at Prairie City and Evelyn Stevener who taught at Papinville. Fourteen students were present. This was a really great turn out as District 7 closed and consolidated with Rich Hill in 1952.
Children attending were able to make crafts and play games and were given animal balloons.
John Toppass from Huston, TX, presented a large beautiful picture of the historic Marais des Cygnes Bridge to the association for display in the museum. Elvin Henley donated to the museum an old muzzle loading pistol barrel that was found in the area near Harmony Mission.
Just before the meal those present rose, gave pledge to the flag and sang “America the Beautiful.” As the song was sung Ernie Franke from Belton released his homing pigeons which circled and then flew due north for their home. Wesley
We thank all our association members and their families for their donations and most of all their work in making the event so special each year. Most of all our thanks go to each and everyone who attended. Your generous support made this years picnic one of the very best. We are already looking forward to next year.