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West Plains, Mo. arts and crafts show benefits local vendors and children

(KY3)
Published: Dec. 7, 2019 at 8:40 PM CST
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Hundreds of people got some more Christmas shopping done Saturday thanks to the annual West Plains Optimist Arts and Crafts Show, a show that helps local vendors and children.

"All proceeds go back into the community for youth oriented programs," Organizer and Optimist member Tara Wilbanks told KY3.

While many shoppers and vendors benefit from the craft show, it's really the kids who are the winners.

Right now, it cost two dollars to enter for anyone 15 and older but if you don't want to pay, you can donate to Toys for Tots.

"You can bring a brand new, unwrapped toy that would go to help an otherwise unfortunate child that might not have as good of a Christmas, and this will be something to definitely brighten their day or their Christmas," Wilbanks exclaimed.

Big crowds come each year to the civic center to buy Christmas presents from the more than 160 vendors, keeping the dollars local.

"I've been working with leather all my life. When I was seven years old, I took an old, worn out pair of boots that had good leather tops, I cut it up and made my first holster. I was seven years old," Bob Dale said.

Bob Dale of Mountain View says he can make just about anything you want out of leather.

"You can spend as much money with me as you want to," Dale added.

Shows like this help vendors like Dale make a living doing what they love.

"Over the last 34 years there's been a lot of young ladies that have come to me, 20 or 25 years old, that bring a little girl about so high and they always say, I was this age when my mom brought me to you and bought a belt and I'm bringing my daughter to you. And that's the best thrill that a man can have," Dale said.

His grandson Nathan has been working alongside him for years.

Nathan will take over the family business beginning next year.

"Perfect. Couldn't have a better teacher," said Nathan.

The arts and crafts show continues Sunday.

Doors open at 10 a.m. and the show ends at 3 p.m.

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