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Experienced Singer, Speaker to Present on Western, Great Plains Folk Life

Jim Hoy
Published: Thursday, April 25th, 2019

Experienced Singer, Speaker to Present on Western, Great Plains Folk Life

Butler Community College’s Life Enrichment will feature Jeff Davidson at 9 a.m. and Jim Hoy at 10 a.m. on Tuesday, May 7.

Using songs, historical facts and pictures, Davidson leads audiences through the history of the settlement of the west, with particular emphasis on the state of Kansas. The development of Kansas had a tremendous influence on western settlement, helping to shape the economy, ideology and heroism of a young nation. Davidson entertained as part of the Flint Hills Overland Wagon Train for 25 years where he developed the idea of using historical events to introduce songs he sang. He uses a combination of classic western and folk tunes along with his own compositions to highlight the significant historical events that led Kansas into statehood.

An authority on the folk life of ranching, Hoy is a professor of English and former director of the Center for Great Plains Studies at Emporia State University. He has lectured internationally on the folk life of ranching and is the co-author of “Plains Folk,” a syndicated newspaper column. 

Most Kansans are familiar with stories of grasshoppers large enough for cowboys to ride, or summers that popped corn in the field due to the heat. Kansas is a place of big skies and tall tales, but these exaggerated narratives help explain the character of our state and its people. Hoy’s presentation will explore some of the countless legends and folktales from around the state, and how they define the communities that keep these stories alive.

“Kansas Legends and Folktales” is part of Humanities Kansas's Movement of Ideas Speakers Bureau, featuring presentations and workshops designed to share inspiring stories, spark informative conversations and generate insights that strengthen civic engagement.

Life Enrichment meets on the first Tuesday morning of the month during the school year. Area adults enjoy high-quality speakers and performers, along with a light breakfast and coffee during each regular meeting. Meetings take place in the Clifford/Stone Community Room at the Hubbard Welcome Center on the El Dorado campus. Meetings are open to everyone and there is no charge to attend. Those who attend regularly are encouraged to register so they receive monthly newsletters announcing the programs. New members are always welcome.

For more information about Life Enrichment or the May 7 program, please contact Trisha Walls at 316-218-6355 or twalls@butlercc.edu.