NEOSHO, Mo. — Officials with the city of Neosho have announced that they are changing things up a little this year with the annual Celebrate Neosho event and are moving the action from the city's airport — where it has been held for the past several years — back to the downtown square.
"The last several years have been done out at the airport with air show elements and skydiving," said Master Scott Hall, public relations and events coordinator. "So we're kind of going back to our roots a little bit."
The event will take place from 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday, June 29, on the square near the Newton County Courthouse, 101 S. Wood St. New events will include small carnival games, live music, food trucks and an art exhibit.
The event will still celebrate Independence Day with exhibits honoring police officers, other first responders, active-duty military and veterans, Hall said. However, the focus of the day has shifted toward offering more large, outdoor games and activities in which both children and adults can take part.
"We're working with a local group to organize a cornhole tournament," he said. "Apparently there is a lot of interest in our area building for that game."
Though the details of the tournament are still being scheduled, there will soon be an opportunity for interested people to sign up for the tournament, Hall said. Events are being listed on the Celebrate Neosho 2019 Facebook event page.
"We're going to have an artist alley, kind of an art district," he said. "We're going to bring regional artists in and have some live music — a jazz band from Springfield is going to be part of that."
Hall said that the artist alley will include live art demonstrations and art vendors set up in the street.
Food vendors so far will include barbecue, kettle corn and funnel cakes, Hall said. The city is still accepting interested vendors, including local craftspeople or businesses selling items other than food.
The fireworks display will take place when night falls in Morse Park, 500 E. Spring St., Hall said.
Hall said that while having the event at the airport was successful, city officials hope to make Celebrate Neosho even more family-oriented and geared toward the community.
"There is a lot history here, and there is a lot of beautiful stuff," Hall said. "There is a lot of heritage here, and I think there is a renewed interest in embracing that."
For Celebrate Neosho details, vendors may contact Neosho City Hall at 417-451-8050.