Old Miners’ Days Offers Family-Friendly Ways to Experience Missouri’s Mining History
21 Sep 2015
VIBURNUM, Mo. (Sept. 21, 2015) — On Oct. 2-4, The Doe Run Company (Doe Run) and the Viburnum community will hold the 29th Annual Old Miners’ Days festival, recognizing the region’s rich history as one of the world’s largest lead mining districts.
“We estimate that more than 8,000 people came out last year to celebrate our mining heritage, and to enjoy music, food and activities,” said David Major, maintenance planner at Doe Run and director of Old Miners’ Days. “My high school class helped organize Viburnum’s first Old Miners’ Days in 1986, and it has been exciting to watch this event grow in size and popularity annually. This year, we are pleased to announce several new features, including a 5K race and children’s carnival.”
One of the most popular activities during the festival takes visitors underground to see a working lead mine. Doe Run will offer free mine tours for guests 12 and older on Saturday, Oct. 3, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Mine tour guests can register at Doe Run’s Old Miners’ Days booth, and buses will transport guests to and from the tour site. Doe Run’s lead mines stretch for miles and some are as deep as 1,250 feet underground. Typically a pleasant 65 degrees, the mines are rocky and damp, and feature glittering rock faces and dramatic rock pillars.
“We are living and working in the second-largest lead mining district in the world, so we enjoy giving our neighbors the opportunity to see one of our mines in action,” said Steve Batts, vice president – Southeast Missouri Operations. Lead mining stimulated our region’s economic growth more than 150 years ago, and the lead ore we extract today supplies people around the world with the lead needed to start our cars, store renewable energy and back-up power, protect patients during X-rays, and support building and bridge construction.”
More than 100 of Doe Run employees volunteer to make Old Miners’ Days a success each year. In addition to mine tours, Doe Run will exhibit haul trucks, loaders and other mining equipment. Children can see how this type of equipment works by moving sand with remote-controlled loaders. Batts will also share updates on Doe Run’s mining operations and the future of Missouri mining as part of the State of Mines address at 11 a.m. on Saturday, Oct. 3.
Country music band Ricochet will perform a concert on Saturday at 6:30 p.m. Other activities include a parade, car show, craft booths, children’s games, a talent show, and more. The events will take place next to the Viburnum High School on the Viburnum shopping center parking lot. Visit oldminersdays.com for the full schedule.
About The Doe Run Company
Based in St. Louis, The Doe Run Company is a privately held natural resources company and a global provider of lead, copper and zinc concentrates. Dedicated to environmentally responsible mineral and metal production, Doe Run operates one of the world’s largest, single-site lead recycling centers, located in Boss, Missouri. The Doe Run Company and its subsidiaries deliver products and services necessary to provide power, protection and convenience. Doe Run has operations in Missouri, Washington and Arizona. For more information, visit www.doerun.com and http://sustainability.doerun.com.