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2024 Old Time Music, Ozarks Heritage Festival dates announced  


The 2023 Old-Time Music, Ozarks Heritage Festival will be held from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. June 7 and 8. The annual event in downtown West Plains celebrates Ozarks music and culture.

The two-day festival is the signature event for West Plains and seeks to celebrate, preserve, pass on and nurture an appreciation of the old-time music and folk life traditions distinctive to the Ozark Highlands. Admission to all festival events is free.

Organizers announce this year’s event will feature increased programming of traditional music, lifeways and arts. Music will begin at noon each day, and continue through the end of the headliner performance which begins at 8 p.m.


Organizers say they welcome booths from vendors, nonprofit groups, businesses, school fundraising efforts, churches, civic groups, public officials and individuals; however, in the event of duplicate offerings, first consideration will be given to early registrants. Final approval rests with festival committee members, organizers add.

Booth spaces measure a minimum of 10 feet by 15 feet. Space rental fees this year are $70 for for-profit vendors, $35 for nonprofit groups and $150 for food vendors.

Booth registration forms may be downloaded from the festival website, oldtimemusic.org. Those interested may also contact the West Plains Council on the Arts, sponsoring organization, at info@westplainsarts.org.


Demonstrators are currently sought for this year’s event, and practitioners of traditional arts are encouraged to apply. Applications are available on the festival website at www.oldtimemusic.org/?page_id=3205. Suggested demonstrator hours would be from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Interested people may contact Coordinator Jessica Spauldin, Lennonseyes@gmail.com.

Many of the area’s material arts and crafts originated for entirely utilitarian reasons and were essential for meeting the basic needs of Ozarks residents in past generations, organizers explain.

As a result of changes in the region’s economy, especially the increased availability of manufactured goods since the mid-20th century, such arts and crafts are no longer practical necessities, but many talented artisans and craftspeople in the Ozarks continue to practice them both as outlets for their creativity and as means of celebrating the region’s rich cultural heritage.

Some of the artisans and craftspeople who participate in the Old-Time Music, Ozarks Heritage Festival practice their arts and crafts as living traditions, and their work reflects ongoing developments within those traditions, including, in some cases, their own innovations. Other participants in the festival are more historically based, and they strive to practice their arts and crafts as they were practiced generations ago. Some have products available for purchase; all of them encourage festival goers to observe their work and learn about it.


Volunteers come from many different areas of the community, donating their time to assure a successful event, and the festival committee spends many hours over the year preparing for it. Volunteers are needed for the information booth, two-hour shifts; helping with setup Thursday evening and Friday morning; as shuttle drivers around the grounds, four-hour shifts, must be 21 or older; and helping with tear-down Saturday evening.

Those interested in helping in any way should contact volunteer coordinator Stacey Tune by email, staceyatune@gmail.com, or phone 949-887-4185 or find the online volunteer signup form on the festival website, www.oldtimemusic.org/?page_id=1222.

Volunteers from previous years are encouraged to call or email to confirm they will be participating again this year, organizers note.

The Old-Time Music, Ozarks Heritage Festival seeks to celebrate, preserve, pass on and nurture an appreciation of the old-time music and folk life traditions distinctive to the Ozark Highlands. Admission to all festival events is free.

2024 festival partners include the West Plains Council on the Arts, the City of West Plains, the Ozark Heritage Welcome Center, West Plains Civic Center and Missouri State University-West Plains. Partial funding for the event is provided by the Missouri Arts Council, a state agency. Additional support has been provided by Missouri Humanities and Missouri Department of Tourism.

For more information on the festival email info@westplainsarts.org, visit the website at www.oldtimemusic.org or follow @old.time.music.festival on Facebook.