Proud Boys’ presence at Neosho Fall Festival causes controversy

Local News

NEOSHO, Mo. – Saturday, October 3, the City of Neosho Fall Festival took place in the Historic Downtown District of Neosho. The festival has occurred every fall since 1965.

“In this year of uncertainty, we are holding onto one constant, The City of Neosho Fall Festival…,” said the Neosho Area Chamber of Commerce website.

The Ozark Mountain Proud Boys, a local chapter of a controversial, far-right group, were present at the festival. They were peaceful and denied an interview.

Many opposed the Proud Boys being there, but because Neosho has no applicable ordinances to prevent it, they were allowed a booth.

Dola Flake, with Joplin for Justice, had a conversation with the Proud Boys and her words drew a crowd.

“We need to unite in the acknowledgement that people of color are not being treated appropriately in this community and in this nation,” said Flake. “We need to unite and stand up and be a voice, so I encourage you to find somebody to talk to, educate yourself, talk to these people [the Proud Boys] and help them understand a little bit different.”

Aside from the slight controversy, the festival included an array of booths, fine arts, musicians, games, food vendors, a car and truck show and more.

“I think everybody’s really excited to be able to be here today, because I’ve heard several festivals have been cancelled. So they’re really looking forward to hanging out and being around everyone,” said Amber Denison with Teaspoon & Kettle.

“I think it’s great that they’re still able to have it… It’s a regular thing – it definitely marks the start of fall for the town… I think it’s a good outing for the community to support local businesses,” said Molly Brown with Oh Happy Day Boutique.

To find out about other upcoming events in Neosho, visit the Neosho Area Chamber of Commerce events calendar.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Trending Stories