The Baldknobbers are Coming!
Those familiar with Branson are familiar with “The Baldknobbers Jamboree,” a comedy show that has kept people laughing for 55 years. Since becoming a Branson mainstay, it has been rare for the comedy group to leave Branson for shows.
But they are making an exception on Friday, Feb. 20 at 7 p.m. when they will perform at Poplar Bluff’s Historic Rodgers Theatre. The show is being performed as a fundraiser for Springhill’s School of Hope in Fairdealing.
Sean Kallner, who founded the school, says his school has had a number of different fundraisers over the past three years. This year the decision was made to try to get the Baldknobbers to come to Poplar Bluff, with the belief that the comedy troupe would pull a good crowd and thus help the fundraising efforts.
“We felt the Baldknobbers would be well-supported by the community,” said Kallner. He said the school is in the midst of a building project and really needs the funds to complete it.
He and Jim Hoyt began the project of recruiting The Baldknobbers for a visit to Poplar Bluff.
“I contacted The Baldknobbers and began the negotiation process. We nailed down the date, and I have to say they have been very helpful in working with us,” said Kallner.
Now he would also like to draw in some corporate sponsors to help underwrite the event.
The Baldknobbers began their career as a family entertainment phenomenon in 1959, when the four Mabe brothers began entertaining visitors at Branson’s lakefront. Their show is a special blend of comedy and music.
Now the second and third generations of the family carry on the tradition, joined by a cast of singers, musicians, comedians and entertainers. The Baldknobbers keep their show fresh by creating a new show each year.
Springhill School of Hope was founded by the Springhill Missionary Baptist Church. The idea for it began in 2004 and the first year of operation was 2007. It included seven children, grades 2 through 8. By 2010, enrollment grew to 31 students.
“By then we were running out of room,” explained Kallner. So in 2011, the church began construction of a new school building.
“With a new school building, we will be able to enroll over 50 students,” said Kallner.
Springhill School of Hope has as its mission to provide quality, individualized instruction for its students. The school utilizes the ACE (Accelerated Christian Education) school curriculum. ACE was founded in 1970, and today is utilized in over 6,000 schools in 145 countries.
“Our school is based on the idea of each student having reasonable goals to work toward,” explained Kallner. “We strive to provide a Christ-centered atmosphere and a positive learning environment. We also want to encourage growth in Christian character.”
The school serves students in kindergarten through 12th grade, and features a school calendar that is somewhat different than the traditional school.
“Our school year begins in July and ends in June,” said Kallner. “Our quarters are ten weeks of school and then a three-week break between each quarter.” School days are Tuesday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.
The school is located off Highway 160 between Poplar Bluff and Doniphan.