"Who’s  Ivy Jean ?" Most Folks ask. Well, let me tell ya.

The Short Story;  Ivy Jean is the name of a true composite character in the colorful Ozarks history of the 1800's. She was the first character I portrayed and brought to life as a little Hillbilly Street Performer at the theme park, Silver Dollar City, near Branson Mo. during a fun 25 year career beginning in 1977.

 ‘Any woman courageous enough to pursue her dream, deep down beholds her own Ivy Jean’. 

The Not so Short Story!   Ivy Jean Putnam, a true composite character in history was a little hillbilly gal who lived in and loved the Ozark Mountains in the late 1880's. Her home place,  a simple little farm perched on a hillside near the burnt down village of Marmaros,  in the wilds of Southwest Missouri wer’nt much to brag about.  Furnishings were sparse, repairs were many,  finances were few but  love, laughter and hospitality were abundant. She made  her living and her life in this rugged Ozark world by the things she planted, gathered and shared.   

 Not much grows easily in this rocky, thin, tick lousy ground except determination and a sense of humor! Without those, there would be no stories no legacies or dreams. The fruit of determination is vision and the planting guide of a good sense of humor leads to a purpose.   As the Good Book says, 'Live your life on purpose; do unto others as you’d have them do to you. Be a good steward of the land and to always show hospitality to strangers, for by so doing, some have entertained Angels unbeknownst to themselves'.                      

 Almost 100 years later, on the very near place where the pre-fire village of  Marmaros once stood, now stands the bustling theme park town of Silver Dollar City near Branson MO. It was on the streets of Silver Dollar City back in 1977 that the spunky character and antics of little Miss Ivy Jean came to life again each and every day to the amusement and delight of thousands of guest who daily visited the park.

Full of spit and vinegar and a smile as wide as the sunrise, Ivy Jean enjoyed the guest and probably had more  fun   than any paid employee should have. I was that employee. For a wonderful 25 years I got to bring Ivy Jean to life through character and entertainment.  Her spirit led me through many hills and hollers of a quarter century career with a wonderful company known as Silver Dollar City. I was truly blessed to have so much fun and meet so many wonderful people and travel to very many wonderful places over the years. But the greatest place of all  that I traveled to was along the  path that led me to my own dream and vision and purpose for my life, a place now known as Ivy Jean’s Ozark Farmstead,  I’ve been blessed to build and to share with others over the past couple of years. When you get here to the farmstead remind me to tell ya all the stories of getting hired on and some of the fun back stories of character building hillbilly style!


Any woman courageous enough to pursue her own dream, deep down beholds her own Ivy Jean! 

Silver Dollar City Master Image  Makers of 1993