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Southwest Missouri News--Carthage

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by Carol Harris, Branson area, and Mary Engler-Guccione, Joplin area

The population of Carthage grew earlier this month as hundreds of people flocked to the Precious Moments tourist center for Precious Moments Week July 6-12.

The Enesco Care-A-Van was in Shepherd of the Hills, Branson July 6 to exhibit many of the famous Precious Moments figurines.

The 53-foot van is a moving museum exhibiting the history of the figurines. Creator Sam Butcher was on hand for the day to sign figurines.

The van moved to the Precious Moments Chapel July 7-12.

Butcher created the first Precious Moment figurine 20 years ago. Enesco Corporation is the licensee for the multimillion dollar figurine business.

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