A good crowd attended the 130th anniversary of the Neosho National Fish Hatchery on Saturday. The visitors consisted of people of all ages who came from the four-state area as well as from other states farther away such as Oregon and Iowa.

A good crowd attended the 130th anniversary of the Neosho National Fish Hatchery on Saturday. The visitors consisted of people of all ages who came from the four-state area as well as from other states farther away such as Oregon and Iowa.
The art show was the big draw as people enjoyed old and new scenes from Neosho and the surrounding area. Both the older paintings and modern ones found favor with the crowd, and guests enjoyed meeting several artists who were on hand. The artists spoke with visitors and answered questions about the artwork.
Many people talked about their memories of "old Neosho" and expressed pleasure at seeing scenes from the past. Scenes from Neosho included some well-recognized buildings as well as two unusual views of Neosho by artist Jeffrey Jones. One of Jones' scenes was of the great fire at Briggs Hardware Store in 1951. Located on the south side of the Neosho Square, the hardware store never reopened after that fire. The other painting was a beautiful, almost eerie, night view of today's square. The street lights glowing through the darkness allow only a partial view of the courthouse and the foliage around it.
Three large birthday cakes were part of the celebration, and they were readily eaten by the visitors. The giftshop/bookstore did record sales as people seemed to want a Neosho souvenir.
Several politicians made an appearance at the show. as did a couple of television stations which sent reporters to record this historic celebration.
Carla West was the winner of the door prize. She won a Neosho National Fish Hatchery decorative plate; a hatchery T-shirt; a copy of "At This Place," a book on the history of the hatchery; and a Shakespeare fishing rod and reel. West lived in Neosho for 30 years before moving to Arkansas. Her daughter still lives here and when West comes to town she always visits the hatchery.
The 130th celebration was sponsored by the hatchery, the Neosho Arts Council, and the Friends of the Neosho National Fish Hatchery.