Official Josh Farley explains a call to Webb City coach John Roderique during a playoff game.

Officials shortage causes need for some football games on Thursdays, Saturdays

Along with everything else these days, there’s a shortage of football officials. That’s why Webb City is playing at Carl Junction this Thursday.

Josh Farley, the Joplin Football Officials Association assistant assigner of crews to officiate games, says there aren’t enough crews to have more than 29 games on Friday nights in the Joplin/Springfield area.

There are 11 crews in the Joplin association and 18 crews in the Springfield association. The Springfield association normally has 19 crews but is short a crew this year.

At some point, every team is asked to play a game on a Thursday night or a Saturday.

The limit on Friday night games actually started last year, when Neosho, for example, played a Saturday game. Because the Wildcats took their non-Friday-night game last year, all their games can be on a Friday night this year.

Webb City Athletic Director John Roderique says Webb City and Carl Junction agreed to play their game this year on a Thursday to avoid having to play another game farther away on a Thursday or possibly a Saturday. “Nobody made us move the game. It was our choice,” Roderqiue says. 

In the past, Farley says the officials associations were able to make up a crew two or three times a year but weren’t able to this year.

“We’re always recruiting, trying to get more to do it (officiate),” says Farley, who when not in black-and-white stripes is the operator of the Center Creek 201 Wastewater Treatment Plant in Webb City.

As the assistant assigner for the Joplin association, he helped schedule four officials for each of the 316 games to be played locally this season, including Saturday youth football games.

To inquire about becoming an official for any sport, contact Farley at

Carterville to receive $500,000 grant for street improvements


Carterville is one of 40 communities in Missouri receiving a total of $17 million in Community Development Block Grants.

Carterville’s grant is earmarked for asphalt overlay on certain streets.

Range Line closure starts after Labor Day

Bridge construction completion date is Dec. 16

Closure of Range Line for replacement of the bridge over the Kansas City Southern railroad tracks is upon us after a delay.

The Missouri Department of Transportation now says all lanes will be closed starting as soon as Tuesday, Sept. 6, and stay that way for the duration of the project, which is scheduled to be completed by Dec. 16.

Closure was initially supposed to be in July but was moved back for various reasons.

The bridge is one of 250 being repaired or replaced across the state under the $350 million Focus on Bridges program. 

The new bridge will be 15 feet wider and 2 feet higher than the one being replaced. The current structure was built in 1976 and is experiencing increasing deterioration. Approximately 24,580 vehicles cross the bridge daily. Hartman & Co., of Springfield, is the contractor on the $6.2 million job.

Pro Musica presents The Sinta Saxophone Quartet

7 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 8, First Community Church

Pro Musica kicks off their 43rd season with the Sinta Quartet at 7 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 8, at First Community Church of Joplin. 

This free concert, the first of seven performances in Pro Musica’s 2022-23 series, features an award-winning saxophone quartet composed of dynamic performers who originally came together as students at University of Michigan. The concert will present a wide range of musical genres, from transcriptions of classical works, to folk music, to music by living composers that has been written specifically for the ensemble.

“We are excited to welcome the Sinta Quartet back for their second performance in Joplin,” says Pro Musica Executive Director Emlyn Johnson. “In the classical music world, the saxophone quartet has really taken off in recent decades, and this group is truly one of the best saxophone ensembles out there today.”

The concert is free and open to the public. No reservations are required. Donations are welcomed at the door. For more information, visit the Pro Musica website.

National Women in Media Collection, State Historical Society of Missouri photos

Dorothy Jurney, women’s page editor for the Miami Herald, and staff prepare for publication, circa 1950s.

New women in media exhibit

State Historical Society of Missouri, Columbia

A new exhibit, “In Their Own Words: Celebrating the National Women and Media Collection,” is on display at the State Historical Society of Missouri. The collection is celebrating its 35th anniversary with an exhibit featuring diaries, photos, letters, and interviews from the National Women and Media Collection, established at the State Historical Society in 1987. The 92-foot-long exhibit covers the collection’s history of women in journalism from the 1800s to the 1990s. 

The public is invited to an opening reception for the exhibition from 4 to 6 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 7, at the Center for Missouri Studies, headquarters of the State Historical Society of Missouri. 

Visitors can see the exhibit through Dec. 23, 2022, during regular visitor hours at the State Historical Society of Missouri. The exhibit is located on the second floor in the Wenneker Family Corridor Gallery, SHSMO Center for Missouri Studies, 605 Elm St. 

Tad Bartimus on assignment for The Associated Press as a correspondent during the Vietnam War, 1973.