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By Kelly Wilson 31 May, 2017

Join the Rotary Club of Hannibal for a fun-filled day of music, brews and food at the fourth annual Fiesta del Sol.  

The event will be 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Saturday, June 24, at Central Park. It is co-sponsored by Wade Stables, P.C., the Hannibal Convention & Visitors Bureau and Mark Twain Distributing.

Each year’s event features a select craft brewery, and this year’s event will be a double-header of sorts — spotlighting Missouri Boulevard Brewing Co. of Kansas City and Kraftig Brewing Company of St. Louis.

Beverages from Boulevard Brewing will be featured noon to 2 p.m. and 4 to 6 p.m., with a Kraftig sampling 2 to 4 p.m.  

The first Boulevard sampling will feature its Smokestack Series of beers that are hard to find outside of the Kansas City area.

All samplings are included with the price of admission. Boulevard also will have a brewer on hand throughout the day to discuss the brewery’s history and process.    

Tickets are $10 in advance and $15 at the gate. Tickets are available at County Market locations in Hannibal, Quincy and Palmyra or online at hannibalfiestadelsol.com. Children 17 and younger get in free.  

Food vendors and other merchants offering crafts and clothing will fill Hannibal’s tree-lined Central Park; there will be vendors with activities and items for children as well. Missouri Bat Census will be on hand to provide information about Hannibal’s Sodalis Nature Preserve and endangered bats in Missouri.

Details about the event may be found at facebook.com/RotaryFiestadelSol/. 


• 11 a.m. to noon

Singer/songwriter Murray McFarlane

• Noon to 1:30 p.m.

Singer/songwriter Frate

• 1:30 to 3 p.m.

Singer/songwriter Liz Bentley

• 3 to 5 p.m.

Burnt Toest performing indie rock

• 5 to 7 p.m.

Al Holliday and the East Side Rhythm Band performing rhythm and blues

• 7 to 9 p.m.

Kent Burnside with the Flood Brothers performing blues and rock

By Kelly Wilson 31 May, 2017

It’s a music festival. It’s a home-brew competition. It’s a vehicle show. It’s a race. And it’s a fundraiser for a good cause.

Brew Skies Music Festival will take place Saturday, June 10, at Mark Twain Cave and Campground, 300 Cave Hollow Road, and proceeds will benefit Hannibal Nutrition Center.  

“This is the ultimate summer music festival and beer-tasting adventure in Northeast Missouri. A wide variety of musical genres will be represented, with many original singer-songwriters as well as tributes to some musical greats,” organizer Jason Gregory said, adding six different musical groups will perform 11:30 a.m. to 11 p.m.

Twenty or more homebrewers from the Midwest will face off in an annual competition organized by the Hannibal Area Homebrewers Association.

Sampling will be noon to 2 p.m. and is included with the price of a general admission ticket to the festival.

Hannibal’s Mark Twain Brewing Co. will host the HAHA Homebrew Competition.

“Mark Twain Brewing has been an important supporter of the local homebrew community. Without their support we wouldn’t be able to bring in some of the musical acts and provide such a strong lineup of performers,” Gregory said.

Joining Mark Twain Brewing at the festival will be Bell’s Brewing Co. from Kalamazoo, Mich. Mark Twain Brewing and Bell’s brewers will serve as judges. The Judge’s Choice winner will receive a trip for two to Bell’s Brewery in Michigan.

Prizes will be awarded for Best of Show — along with a second and third place — and a People’s Choice award.  

Cars and more will be on display at the festival’s Vintage VW Meet-Up 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Owners of vintage Volkswagens are expected.

“Festival-goers will be able to check out the best of air- and water-cooled Volkswagens at this informal, nonjudged gathering,” Gregory said, adding that more than 50 vehicles from eight states have confirmed their participation.  

The festival promises no shortage of food. The menu is extensive and includes lobster, steak, chicken tacos, gourmet grilled sandwiches, tenderloin and catfish sandwiches, specialty hot dogs and a range of barbecue dishes. No outside food or drink is permitted.

The all-ages festival is family friendly, and children ages 12 and younger get in free. Children’s activities will include a petting zoo from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., VW painting with the Hannibal Arts Council, photos with Herbie, face painting and more.

A 5K run will begin at 8 a.m., with an awards ceremony at 9:30 a.m. The course begins and ends at Mark Twain Cave.  

Prizes will be awarded to the top two male and female participants overall, and the top two male and female finishers in each age group. Proceeds from the race will benefit Eugene Field Elementary School’s efforts to raise money for a new playground area for the school and its neighborhood.

While there is some seating, attendees are welcome to bring their own lawn chairs or blankets. Large tents will offer shelter in the event of rain.

Parking is limited. Attendees are encouraged to use shuttle service from Hannibal Trolley Co., 220 N. Main St. Cost is $3 one way for the five-minute trip. Service will begin at 10 a.m. Saturday and continue until 30 minutes after the final performance.

More information and tickets are available at hannibalbrews.com. Tickets are $10 online and at County Market Stores in Hannibal, Quincy and Palmyra until June 1. Tickets are $15 after that date. 


• 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Frate                          

• 1:30 to 3 p.m. Arkansauce

• 3:30 to 5 p.m. The Flood Brothers  

• 5:30 7 p.m. Urban Pioneers      

• 7:30 to 9 p.m. The Mulligan Brothers  

• 9:30 to 11 p.m. Sean Canan’s VooDoo Players perform Bob Dylan and Grateful Dead  

By Kelly Wilson 31 May, 2017

The 22nd annual Hannibal Cannibal is right around the corner — Saturday, July 1.

Registration is open, and you may register online at hannibalcannibal.com. Forms also are available at the concierge desks at Hannibal Regional Hospital and Hannibal Regional Medical Group, and the offices of Hannibal Regional Foundation.

Register before June 19 for just $25. Those registering for the Cannibal will receive a performance T-shirt, cinch sack race bag and a custom finisher’s medal.  

The race includes something for everyone — a 5/10/15k run, a 5k walk and a fun run for children ages 10 and younger. The race will begin at 7 a.m., with the fun run following the race at 9 a.m.  

Proceeds from this year’s race will support the Cherish Campaign, which is raising money to assist the expansion of Women’s Health Services at Hannibal Regional — a crucial element in meeting the health needs of the region. Offering a continuum of services and resources for all ages of women and their health needs is invaluable to growth and success in this area.  

For the fifth consecutive year, Advance Physical Therapy will serve as official race sponsor.

More information is available at hannibalcannibal.com or 573-629-3577. To stay updated on the Cannibal, find us on Facebook under Hannibal Cannibal, on Twitter @CannibalRace and now on Instagram at Hannibal_cannibal_race.    

By Kelly Wilson 31 May, 2017

The Tom and Becky Program invites you to the 2017 Tom and Becky Dinner Cruise, scheduled Monday, June 19.

Hosted by the 2017-18 Tom and Becky Goodwill Ambassadors, the annual event raises money to support the Tom and Becky Program, and gives people an opportunity to meet Hannibal’s current, past and incoming Tom and Becky Ambassadors while cruising the Mississippi and enjoying an evening of stories, entertainment and food.    

Tickets for the Tom and Becky Benefit Dinner Cruise are $41 for adults, $22 for children ages 6 through 12 and $5 for children ages 2 through 5. There is no charge for children younger than 2 years old.

Tickets may be purchased from any of the 2017-2018 Tom and Becky finalists: Linnea Brown, Brooklyn Haye, Kendel Locke, Claire Martinson, Jade Thomas, Colton Broughton, Andrew Catalpa, Elijah Dexheimer, Samuel Hirner and Eric Hudson, or through the Tom and Becky Program by calling 573-221-9010, ext. 404.

For more information on the cruise or how you can help support the Tom and Becky Program, contact Melissa Cummins at the Mark Twain Boyhood Home and Museum at 573-221-9010, ext. 404. 

By Kelly Wilson 31 May, 2017

Jim’s Journey: The Huck Finn Freedom Center, Hannibal’s newest museum, highlights the courage and accomplishments of — and gives dignity to — Hannibal’s nameless, invisible ancestors who labored as slaves in our community.

On Monday, June 19, Hannibal will celebrate Juneteenth with an event that commemorates the date — June 19, 1865 — when the last 200,000 slaves were freed in Galveston, Texas, with the arrival of federal troops.  

On that day in 1865, a spontaneous celebration of emancipation was born. Yes, it was more than two years after President Abraham Lincoln had signed the Emancipation Proclamation. To avoid compliance, tens of thousands of slaveholders fled to Texas to keep their slaves, a process known as refugeeing. Whites also came from neighboring states in droves, believing their slave property would be safe in Texas, the last frontier, where slaves continued to be bought and sold.   Although estimates vary widely, historians believe that after 1863 between 50,000 and 150,000 refugeed slaves were brought to Texas.  

Hundreds of miles east and months earlier the Missouri State Convention delegates passed the 1865 Emancipation Proclamation Ordinance. Because Lincoln’s 1863 Emancipation Proclamation did not apply to loyal slave states, Missouri became the first slave state to free its slaves — more than 114,000 men, women and children. Newly freed slave responses ranged from exhilaration and celebration to incredulity and fear. The fears proved justified as nearly 25 percent died in the first 5 years post emancipation, beset by homelessness, starvation and disease.

By 1845, Hannibal had achieved city status and by 1860, the population had more than doubled, making it the second largest city and third commercial center in Missouri.

The history and culture of slavery in the Hannibal area are told in Terrell Dempsey’s book “Searching for Jim: The Untold Story of Slavery in Sam Clemens’s World.”  

Dempsey writes:

“Like land, slaves were a valuable asset — traded, inherited, rented, bought and sold. ...   An important source of city and state income amounting to more than 20 percent of Marion County revenue.”

Slaves worked as household help and field hands, skilled tradesman, railroad builders, nursemaids,   miners and riverboat laborers and much more, contributing to Hannibal’s fiscal success and growth. The life of the slave was brutal, replete with laws that regulated the slave’s life from cradle to grave. 

This year's Juneteenth

Hannibal’s first Juneteenth Celebration was June 1997. Marsha Mayfield, co-founder of Parents and Youth Reaching For Educational Excellence and Cultural Togetherness, aka PYRFEECT, was its most ardent sponsor. The group sponsored years of family-oriented events, celebrating with parades, picnics, marches, plays, dances, workshops and educational opportunities. Mayfield says that “the festival has always served as a venue to educate and bring a multicultural purpose and feel to the community. This year will mark 20 years of observance. While PYRFEECT has been dissolved, its mission educating/uplifting/serving youth continues.

This year’s celebration will start at B&B Theatre, which will be screening “The Children’s March,” a story of how children can make a difference leading positive social change. The film will begin at 3 p.m. for children in grades four through 12. It is sponsored by Kids in Motion; for ticket information, contact Amy Vaughn at Douglass Community Services, 573-221-3892.

From 4 to 5 p.m., all are invited to a community scavenger hunt sponsored by Jim’s Journey; prizes will be awarded for first, second and third places.

The event will conclude at Jim’s Journey, 509 N. Third St., with museum tours, a soul food cooking demonstration and a cookout.

Coming together to bring to the community the Juneteenth event, free and open to the public, are B&B Theatres; Branson L. Wood, Attorney at Law; Continental Cement; Douglass School Reunion Committee; Douglass Community Services; and Jim’s Journey. 

— By Faye Dant

By Kelly Wilson 31 May, 2017

Sometimes passion surprises even the creator. 

One day, this month’s Alliance Art Gallery guest artist Minetta Heidbrink found herself literally stunned into photography when she visited the Valley of Fire in Nevada. Yes, of course, like every other American, she had pointed-and-shot hundreds of pictures: family, vacations, flowers. But now, the camera became a source of creativity. On that day, the brilliant orange glowing stones, the dusky sage, the brilliant blue sky with clouds texturing her newfound world, she began to click, and click, and click. Soon she hungered for wilderness.

“That got me to travel,” she said. Canada. North America. Mountain climbing. Though she had traveled to China, Japan and other places, those were pre-passion moments.

Minetta moved up from point-and-shoot to today’s Nikon D800 with its full-frame features, and a Luminex for its lightweight portability. Photography, for her, has become a form of fine art. In today’s world, with a camera embedded in every phone, and people snapping scenes at fast-food speed, she relishes digitally enhancing her images.

“People do not want straight-up photography. They say to themselves, ‘I can take that picture,’ ” she said. 

Minetta pushes herself to find the deeper expression of the image, connecting the emotional impact she experienced when photographing the image to her enhancement techniques. In some strange way, the photograph becomes so much more than a recorded image; it becomes an expression of beauty or nostalgia or quietness.

Recently she began harvesting gray slate shingles from old New Orleans homes, adhering her images to them. To see pink lupines from a mountain meadow against the slate draws the viewer right into being on a granite-topped mountain. The effect of photography and stone does not stop in the wilderness. Old New Orleans homes and scenes from downtown Hannibal couple with the slate to take you back in time, to quietly be in and with the image she has so beautifully captured. 

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