A Chautauqua was a community gathering focused on lectures about important social, intellectual, and political issues. Musical performances and plays were also frequently part of the entertainment offerings. Plain Dealing hosted a Chautauqua in the fall of 1917. The Bossier Banner, October 11, 1917, announced a “three-day whirlwind of things worthwhile” and called the event "an educational and social opportunity that should not fail to be taken advantage of by all residents of this entire community." The paper noted that “the prices of admission will be reasonable. Sunday, free to all. Get a season ticket and see all the numbers.”
“These four things will be given great emphasis: Community co-operation, Better Schools, Increased Farm Production and Good Citizenship. All worthy topics."
“The Radcliff Booster Club of Washington, D. C. will present:”
“THE METROPOLITANS—a trio of artists comprising Patti Rode, contralto; Alexa Whitmire, violinist, and Edward Coleman, a musician adept at playing any and all band instruments. Every member of this company is a soloist, and their program will be one of the musical treats of the Chautauqua.”
“THREE OTHER CLEVER ARTISTS—Louise Carlton, a contralto of unusual power and eligibility; Mary Blanton, a reader with a rare personality and a record of triumphant successes, and Estelle Wilson, a pianist of recognized ability, for a combination which has made a wonderful impression on every platform on which they have appeared.”
“THE LYRIC GLEE CLUB OF PHILADELPHIA—Four fine fellows who are known for their great voices, clean comedy and witty wisdom. Their programs have never yet failed to please an audience.”
“J. Q. ROBINSON—An orator and a scholar. Opie Read said of him: ‘I wish J. Q. Robinson was stationed in my town. What an inspiration it would be to work with him.’”
“Col. GEORGE A. GEARHART—One of the most commanding figures on the Chautauqua platform. His lectures, ‘The Coming Man’ and ‘Civic Righteousness’ are classics. You will want to hear him.”
“JOHN G. CORNWELL—Preacher of health, happiness and efficiency. As an orator and lecturer his services have been in demand in every part of this country. He is supreme in that plane that lies between pure humor and vital philosophy.”
“W. G. G. HENWAY brings to the platform a sweet and wholesome optimism. His messages deal with modern problems and their right solutions. His winning personality, enthusiasm, rare tact and diplomacy have won for him a distinct place upon the platforms of the largest Chautauqua in this country.”
“THE MILBURNS—Gustav Milburn is a magician who ranks with the best and his charming wife is his capable assistant. They present a program which is irresistibly fascinating and one that shows intelligent earnestness in its conception. This is a winning feature of the program.