Category Archives: Attractions

Here’s the facts you need to know about what’s “Buzzin in Branson” for you enjoy during June 2015

World famous Harlem Globetrotters featured at Silver Dollar City's "Star Spangled Summer Festival"

World famous Harlem Globetrotters featured at Silver Dollar City’s “Star Spangled Summer Festival” *

Buzzin in Branson” is a concise and easy to read list of the major events and activities taking place in Branson, Missouri during the month being “Buzzed,” which is June of 2015 for this issue. Each issue contains the “Branson Buzz of the Month,” and a list of the major special events, shows and activities for the month.

Branson's newest show, the "Million Dollar Quartet," premiers on June 25.

Branson’s newest show, the “Million Dollar Quartet,” premiers on June 25.

Branson “Buzz of the Month for June 2015

The opening of Branson’s newest show, Million Dollar Quartet, limited engagement performance of Disney’s The Little Mermaid, and the Harlem Globetrotters at Silver Dollar City’s “Star Spangled Summer Festival.”

The following list of major special events, shows and activities taking place in Branson during June is sorted by event date and contains pertinent and timely comments and contact information, through either a link or phone number, that can be used to obtain additional information where appropriate:

Jun 1 – 30: The Hits Starring Collin Raye
Jun 1 -30: Disney’s The Little Mermaid
Jun 5 – 26: Buckets N Boards
Jun 6 – Jul 19: Star Spangled Summer Festival at Silver Dollar City
Jun 6: White River Valley Trail Trek
Jun 6: IMAX Smokin’ Summer Kickoff Party (417-335-3533)
Jun 6: Smokin Summer Kickoff BBQ Cook-Off (417-335-3533)
Jun 6: Afternoon Tea at The Keeter Center (417-690-2120)
Jun 12: The Dan Benton Band- Branson Landing (417-239-3002)
Jun 18 – Jun 20: Ozark Mountain Thunder Motorcycle Rally 2015
Jun 12 – 14: U.S. Bow Fishing Fair and Tournament
Jun 13: Craig Wayne Boyd
Jun 20 – Jun 2: Boot Daddy Presents Gene Watson
Jun 20 – Jun 2:Titanic Museum Attraction Branson Father’s Day Boat Show
Jun 20: Etiquette Class at The Keeter Center (417-690-2120)
Jun 21: Father’s Day
Jun 21: Father’s Day Brunch & Car Show at Keeter Center
Jun 21: Father’s Day Brunch at Chateau on the Lake
Jun 21: Father’s Day Champagne Brunch at Chateau on the Lake
Jun 25: Opening Day of Branson’s newest show Million Dollar Quartet
Jun 27: 2015 Branson Dollhouse Miniature Show
Jun 28: Honor America Celebrate America 4th of July Celebration – College of the Ozarks

“Buzzin in Branson” is produced monthly by the Branson Tourism Center as a service to its customers and others interested in what’s going on in Branson to give them a “heads up” about what’s happening in Branson next month. If you have any further questions about these events or want information or tickets for any of Branson’s shows and attractions or lodging please contact the Branson Tourism Center, one of Branson’s largest and most respected vacation planning services by calling 1-800-785-1550 or through its website, www.BransonTourismCenter.com.

* Photo courtesy of Silver Dollar City

Six neat things about Branson tourism history you might not know

Jack, Mary and Peter Herschend  near the time Silver Dollar City opened. *

Jack, Mary and Peter Herschend near the time Silver Dollar City opened. *

The little town of Branson, Missouri, nestled in the heart of the Ozark Mountains, is an international tourist destination visited annually by millions. Branson visitors can experience almost 100 spectacular live shows offering a staggering variety of entertainment from Branson’s Clay Cooper’s Country Express to SIX; dozens of exciting attractions such as Ride the Ducks and Silver Dollar City, Branson’s award winning 1880’s styled theme park; world class shopping and so much more, but it wasn’t always so.

Let’s take a look at six things that happened to Branson Tourism along the way, starting in the beginning and coming forward:

1. Branson’s First Tourism Attraction – In 1884, when most people just saw a cave filled with bat dung when they looked at “Marble Cave,” William Lynch sensed tourism potential, bought the Cave, “sight unseen,” moved, along with his daughters Miriam and Genevieve, from Chicago to Branson and opened it up for tours. After his death and with a change in name to ‘Marvel Cave’ the daughters continued to operate the attraction until 1950, when Hugo and Mary Herschend leased the cave and the surrounding land from them, and along with their two teenage sons, Peter and Jack, took over the operation and management of the Cave. The Herschend family has been operating the Cave ever since and to this day, it is the oldest and longest continuous running attraction in Branson but that’s not all; it’s all of that, but to use the words of Zig Ziglar, “and then some.” (See Item #5 below.)

2. Harold Bell Wright’s novel “Shepherd of the Hills” – National attention was drawn to the area when Harold Bell Wright’s novel, “The Shepherd of the Hills,” about the love, life, adventures and folklore of the people living in the Ozarks was published in 1907. Thousands from all over the country came to see the area where the Shepherd walked and the “people” described in the story. The novel is credited with the start of Branson’s tourism industry. Ever since 1959 tit has been brought to life near the very spot where Harold Bell Wright wrote it as “more than 90 actors and actresses, and a cast of animals that includes, horses, donkeys, mules, and sheep present this epic tale in an amphitheater under nature’s roof of stars!” in the Shepherd of the Hills Outdoor Drama.

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The “Owen Theatre.”

3. Owen Theatre – The “Owen Theatre,” subsequently renamed the “Owen’s Theatre,” was built in 1936 by Jim Owen, a local float trip operator on the White River, to provide entertainment for the fishermen when they weren’t fishing. Originally called the “Hillbilly Theatre” and, although first a movie theatre, it is considered Branson’s first “theatre,” movie or otherwise and was a harbinger of things to come. Located in historic downtown it is still operating as a theatre and its distinctive architecture and beautiful interior stone walls make it one of the most unique buildings in Branson.

4. The Baldknobbers – In 1959 the Mabe family started performing the Baldknobbers Jamboree which is credited as being Branson’s first show, the “show that started it all.” Interestingly, they did not perform in Branson’s first theatre, the “Owen Theatre,” but in a small rented space in a civic building located right behind it however, it’s kind of neat how 30 plus years after Branson’s “first theater” was built that its “first show” started in its shadow.

5. Silver Dollar City – Opening in 1960, the 1880s styled Silver Dollar City is not only Branson’s biggest paid attraction, but its most popular however, it did not start out to be a stand-alone attraction. It came from an idea of having an area where people could be entertained while waiting to go through the “Marvel Cave.” (See Item #1 above.) The concept developed into an 1880s themed village that was built by Mary, Jack and Peter Herschend, named “Silver Dollar City,” after the Silver Dollars that were given as change to promote the attraction, and opened in 1960. The first year, when it drew four times more visitors than “Marvel Cave,” Peter Herschend said, “We discovered we were in the theme park business,” and the rest is history.

6. The Branson Strip – In 1967 the Presley family built a theatre immediately west of the Branson city limits on State Highway 76 where they began performing Presleys’ Country Jubilee and, with some of the original cast members still performing, have been continuously performing it ever since. Although hard to envision today, it was the first show on what is today, the famed “Branson Strip,” running from the intersection of Fall Creek Road and Highway 76 to the intersection of the Shepherd of the Hills Expressway and Highway 76. It is “home” to the bulk of Branson’s shows and attractions and is traversed annually by millions of Branson visitors.

*Photo courtesy of Silver Dollar City

 

Six facts you might not know about cruising Branson’s Lake Taneycomo on the Lake Queen

Main Street Lake Cruises "Lake Queen."

Main Street Lake Cruises “Lake Queen.”

“The Lake Queen will begin her 2015 schedule of Ozark Sightseeing Cruises on beautiful Lake Taneycomo in Branson on May 18,” said Steven Johnson, the General Manager of Main Street Lake Cruises. “What better way to view the scenic beauty of the Ozarks, its birds, wildlife and learn a bit about the history of, not only Lake Taneycomo, but Branson itself than by sharing a special experience with your family on this 1.5 hour narrated cruise,” he added.

Here’s some facts you might not know about the Lake Queen and what you will experience on her cruises:

This Bald Eagle is just one of the different types of birds and wildlife commonly seen on cruises.

This Bald Eagle is just one of the different types of birds and wildlife commonly seen on cruises.

1. It is a truly unique and exclusive experience – From Bald Eagles and the other birds and wildlife abounding on Lake Taneycomo’s shore line to the every changing plants, trees and foliage; amazing natural bluffs stretching back into the eons of time; and the spectacular majesty of Ozark vistas you will see a unique “show” produced primarily by Mother Nature and not seen by the vast majority of the millions of visitors who come to Branson each year. The view of Branson Landing, its $7.5 million fountains and spectacular synchronized fire, water, light and music show viewed from the cruise is as unique as it is beautiful and inspiring.

2. Safety – The 84 foot long 140 passenger “Lake Queen,” her Captain and crew are all U.S. Coast Guard certified and approved. They are dedicated to just two things, your safety and helping make your time aboard the boat one of the most memorable parts of a great Branson experience.

3. Two Decks Provide Indoor/Outdoor Experience – Her two decks provide passengers with the complete flexibility to enjoy their cruise either on her upper exposed deck or in the fully climate controlled glass enclosed lower deck. ull Amenities – She is tastefully appointed and, while maintaining the nostalgia of the steamboat era, offers a full set of modern amenities including full sized modern restrooms; a full bar and snack food service.

4. Convenient Scheduling – The 1.5 hour cruises are conveniently scheduled for 11:45 a.m., 1:45 p.m., 3:45 p.m., and 5:45 p.m.

5. Bottomless Pizza Cruises – The 11:45 a.m., lunch, and 5:45 p.m., dinner, cruises offer a Bottomless Pizza Buffet complete with unlimited fountain drinks. As with all cruises there will also be a Cash Bar for the purchase of adult beverages, fountain drinks and snack food service.

For more information on enjoying a cruise aboard the Lake Queen, reservations or tickets please contact the Branson Tourism Center, one of Branson’s largest and most respected vacation planning services by calling 1-800-785-1550 or through its website, www.BransonTourismCenter.com.

 

Add some “Titanic” romance and elegance to make your special event absolutely amazing

The romance, elegance and mystique of  the Titanic provide a unique wedding venue.

The romance, elegance and mystique of the Titanic provide a unique wedding venue.

The way that the Titanic Museum Attraction (Titanic) and its crew members remember and tell the stories of those who were on the great ship, when she sank on her fateful maiden voyage over 100 years ago, gives their “passengers” a taste of the adventure, enthusiasm and excitement of that voyage. It is a unique and memorable entertainment experience that millions of Branson visitors have experienced since it opened over nine years ago.

Kristina Hagey, Senior Sales and Events Manager said that as people went through the attraction and experienced it there were requests to have weddings, vow renewals and other special events aboard the “ship,” a half scale replica of the original. She went on to point out that, as a result, the Titanic now offers a variety of options that permit people to incorporate the romance and elegance associated with the Titanic, in both legend and in movies, into their special moment or event and hosts hundreds of them each year.

These options include everything from birthday parties to elaborate corporate events and just about everything involved with weddings from the actual marriage proposal to the wedding and wedding vow renewals. Hagey said, “We have a number of Wedding Packages starting at $450.00 with pricing dependent on whether it is an indoor or outdoor package and the options chosen.” Whatever the case, whether the event is one of their packages or a custom designed wedding, Hagey assists in coordinating the event so the bride and groom and others associated with it can just concentrate on and enjoy their special moment.

Edward and Stacy Gilmore, on the Grand Staricase with 1st Officer Steve Patterson who "officiated", after renewing their vows in celebration of their 15th wedding anniversary.

Edward and Stacy Gilmore, on the Grand Staircase with 1st Officer Steve Patterson who “officiated” the ceremony, after renewing their vows in celebration of their 15th wedding anniversary.

On the morning of April 22, I got to see firsthand how that worked when Stacy and Edward Gilmore, from Canton, IL celebrated their 15th wedding anniversary in a Vow Renewal Ceremony on the Grand Staircase of the Titanic Museum Attraction. The ten minute ceremony was presided over by the ships 1st Officer, Steve Patterson. The Gilmores said they are “Titaniacs” and decided to renew their vows while visiting the Titanic last summer with their family. Stacy said that all it took was one phone call to Hagey, all they had to do was show up and enjoy the moment and that they were just thrilled with the way it went.

Hagey said that many of the events held at the Titanic throughout the year are weddings, corporate and other events customized to meet the needs of the client. Prices depend on many factors including whether the event is held inside the Titanic or outside, the time of year, number of guests, amenities etc. These events could be as simple as a “dessert social” or a First Class “progressive” or sit down dinner. Click here to contact Hagey for information on customizing a wedding or other special event.

She pointed out that the Titanic’s Wedding, Vow Renewal and Proposal packages can also be obtained through the Branson Tourism Center. Annette Wood, the Director of Sales and Marketing for the Branson Tourism Center said, “The Titanic Museum Attraction is one of Branson’s most popular attractions and a wonderful venue in which to have a wedding or other special moment. It would be our pleasure to help anyone, not only with celebrating their wedding or other special moment ‘aboard’ the Titanic, but to coordinate it with lodging, Branson shows, attractions and other activities into a complete, wonderful, personal and memorable Branson experience.” The Branson Tourism Center can be reached by calling 1-800-785-1550 or through its website, www.BransonTourismCenter.com.

 

30 amazing kid friendly activities that your kids will absolutely love doing while vacationing in Branson

Kids and adults alike will never forget their first "DUCK"   "splashdown!"

This is just the beginning; kids and adults alike will never forget their first big “DUCK Splashdown!”

There’s so much to see and do in Branson that it is sometimes hard to focus in on specific things that you might want to see and do. That’s true whether you’re an adult or child. The headline refers to “your kids,” and the following list is written for them, with “age appropriate” help from an adult where needed with younger children, to give them an overview of the exciting, fun and entertaining things they can enjoy while in Branson:

It is in a “check list” form so that items of interest can be checked off for further checking if they are of interest. The extensive linking will take you to additional information on the item such as scheduling, pricing and, in many cases, pictures and videos. The information is provided by the Branson Tourism Center, one of Branson’s largest and most respected vacation planning services.

Whether a “kid,” or an adult planning a trip to Branson with kids, we hope this list will help you to plan to have a great Branson experience whether it’s on one of the 40 rides at Silver Dollar City; meeting “Polar, the Titanic Bear or “Madison,” the tiger; feeding the ducks; exploring a cave or, “well, you get the idea:”

  1. ___ Ride one of more of Silver Dollar City’s over 40 rides with rides for every member of the family.
  2. ___ Have an up close and personal meeting with the giant  dinosaur, “T Rex,” at the Branson Dinosaur Museum.”
  3. ___ See the horses in their stalls at Dixie Stampede.
  4. ___ Sit in a lifeboat at the Titanic Museum Attraction.
  5. ___ Feed the ducks at Scotty’s Trout Dock and Marina.
  6. ___ Experience the “big splashdown” while riding on “Ride The Ducks.”
  7. ___ Go deep into Marvel Cave and ride the “tram” a half a mile from the bottom of the cave to back to the top.
  8. ___ Enjoy kids just like you performing in Branson shows such as “Presleys’,” “Duttons,” “Clay Cooper,” “Hughes Brothers” and others.
  9. ___ Hear the “sounds of an orchestra” coming from just the voices of SIX
  10. ___ Meet a giant “Transformer” standing outside of Ripley’s Believe It or Not! Odditorium
  11. ___ Watch a dog peddle a bicycle and cats jump through hoops at Amazing Pets
  12. ___ Swim at Table Rock Lake’s “Moon Shine Beach.”
  13. ___ See the Acrobats of China perform amazing acrobatic feats.
  14. ___ Ride the free downtown Trolley
  15. ___ Get some “old time” candy at “Dick’s 5 & 10″
  16. ___ Take a train ride on the Branson Scenic Railway.
  17. ___ Meet “Madison” a white tiger, who is one of the many tigers and other “big cats” at the National Tiger Sanctuary.
  18. ___ Eat an Andy’s Custard.
  19. ___ Watch a “grist mill” grind grain at the College of the Ozarks’ “Edward’s Grist Mill.”
  20. ___ Enjoy seeing thousands of toys in the World’s Largest Toy Museum
  21. ___ Laugh with Herkimer, Cecil and Cecil Jr. at Presleys’ Country Music Jubilee.
  22. ___ Play mini golf on one of Branson’s many mini golf courses like Shoot For The Stars Mini Golf
  23. ___ See “Savanah,” a giant Loggerhead Sea Turtle at Branson’s Wild World who has trouble floating because she got hit by a boat.
  24. ___ Go ” nose to nose” with giant Rainbow and Brown Trout, at the aquarium in the “Shepherd of the Hills Hatchery.”
  25. ___ Talk with Titanic Museum Attraction “Polar, the Titanic Bear,” who is based on a toy bear owned by 1 of the 133 children that sailed on the Titanic.
  26. ___ Walk amid 1000s of live butterflies in the Butterfly Palace and Rainforest Adventure.
  27. ___ Ride on one of 4 world class coaster, like the iconic “Wildfire” at Silver Dollar City.
  28. ___ See a giant “fish” swim out over your head while watching Jonah.
  29. ___ Enjoy the fun and adventure of the new $7 million “Fireman’s Landing” at Silver Dollar City with its ten new rides and activities for the whole family.
  30. ___ Splash, play, slide and “plummet” in 2 million gallons of watery fun at White Water

In terms of all there is for kids to see and do in Branson this list is like the “tip of an iceberg”. For additional information on anything in this article or for information on “anything Branson,” please feel free to call 1-800-785-1550 for the help of one of Branson Tourism Center’s Branson based Travel Planners who will be delighted assist you in any way they can.

How Devil’s Den Became A Marble Marvel On Its Way To Becoming Branson’s Silver Dollar City

Looking back toward the top of the Marvel Cave.

Looking back toward the top of the Marvel Cave while descending into the cave.*

The tourist destination of Branson, Missouri has been evolving for over 115 years into the wonderful place that enables millions to be entertained, have fun and create special family memories that will last a lifetime. Today Branson visitors have a marvelous choice of attractions, live shows and activities, all surrounded by pristine lakes and the beauty of the Ozark Mountains, that is unrivaled anywhere. Yet, it wasn’t always that way and started its evolution from the place the Osage Indians called “Devil’s Den.”

Osage legend has it that the name came about when a young bear hunter and a bear fought on the edge of a great hole and fell into it one evening. When they came back the next day all they saw was blackness and a hole that seemed to have no bottom, hence legend says, the name “Devil’s Den.” Legend also speaks of early Spanish explorers exploring the cave, but the first recorded record of the caves exploration was in 1869 as the result of an expedition lead by Henry T. Blow, of St. Louis, who was involved with lead mining.

At that time, as it had been since the days of the Osage and before, the cave’s access was through a big sink hole through which those exploring the cave were lowered. Although they did not find lead, they thought they had seen “marble” in the ceiling of the cave and named it “Marble Cave.” A “bat guano” mining operation developed along with the very small town of “Marmaros” near the mouth of the cave, but the mining operation had ceased and the town had burned down when William Lynch, along with his two young daughters, Genevieve and Miriam, purchased it and began operating it as an Ozark tourist attraction in 1894.

Lynch, ran the cave with his daughters until his death in 1927. The name of the cave was changed to “Marvel Cave” shortly after his death and his two daughters operated the attraction until leasing it to the “Herschend family,” Hugo, Mary and their two teenage sons, Jack and Peter, in the mid 1950’s. The Herschend family has operated it continually since.

“After signing a 99 year lease, the Herschends made many improvements to the cave, but wanted something for people to do up on the surface while they were waiting to tour the cave. Hugo’s vision was to have Ozark craftsmen demonstrating their crafts. That vision, along with some insight about Marmaros were the seeds which were planted and nourished by the Herschend family and blossomed into an 1880s themed town named “Silver Dollar City,” located at the entrance to the cave, which opened May 1, 1960.” The rest is history.

Tours of Marvel Cave, a National Natural Landmark and Branson’s oldest continuously operated attraction, are still conducted daily and are actually included in the price of admission to Silver Dollar City. The 60 minute walking tours depart every half hour and are guided by trained cave guides who take visitors over 500 feet below the surface into the “wet limestone cave” via a combination of stairs, trail and ramps. Once at the bottom, cave visitors get a half mile ride back to the surface via a unique “cable train” installed in 1957.

For additional information on Silver Dollar City, Marvel Cave, or other Branson shows and attractions or Branson lodging please feel free to contact the Branson Tourism Center by either calling their toll free number 1-800-785-1550 or through their website www.BransonTourismCenter.com.

 

* Pictures courtesy of Silver Dollar City

Why Not Spend New Year’s Eve in Branson?

Chateau on the Lake Fireworks.

Chateau on the Lake Fireworks.

Branson’s Christmas Week, already filled with the adventure, fun, shopping and entertainment Branson has to offer, takes on added excitement and anticipation on New Year’s Eve, both during the day and into the evening and nighttime hours as the New Year approaches,” said Annette Wood, the Director of Sales and Marketing for the Branson Tourism Center. “Whether it’s a family or a couple looking for an exciting and fun way to ‘ring out’ the old year and welcome in the New Year, Branson offers an amazing variety of ways to celebrate the New Year,” she added.

From hiking, fishing or playing golf at one of Branson’s championship golf courses, such as the Payne Stewart Golf Club to the unique and exciting Titanic Museum Attraction, decked out for its beautiful “Edwardian Christmas;” the vast majority of Branson’s attractions will be open on New Year’s Eve Day. Most of Branson’s dozens of attractions are not weather dependent and are open year round. From the thousands of white and Christmas colored butterflies in the unique White Flight exhibit at the Butterfly Palace & Rainforest Adventure, the lions and tigers at the National Tiger Sanctuary to the Track Family Fun Parks, Ripleys Believe It or Not Museum, the Hollywood Wax Museum, Promised Land Zoo and dozens of others, there will be a host of ways that families can have fun together on New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day.

Starting with the Amazing Pets at 10:00 AM on New Year’s Day and culminating with the New Year’s Eve celebrations to welcome in 2015, a number of Branson shows will be providing a variety of the live entertainment Branson is noted for. These include Acrobats of China, Grand Jubilee, Jonah, Legends in Concert, Clay Cooper’s Country Express, The Haygoods, Pierce Arrow, Comedy Jamboree, Dixie Stampede, Hamners Unbelievable Variety Show, Showboat Branson Belle, Amazing Acrobats of Shanghai, Christmas on the Trail Chuck Wagon Dinner Show, Comedy Hypnosis Dinner Show, Motown Downtown, The Revollusionists, Red, Hot & Blueand Swing Starring Kelli Grant. Click here for information on show times, scheduling and ticket information.

In addition, the following shows are having special New Year’s Eve parties. For specific information on a particular party please Click here and go to the bottom of the page:

Clay Cooper’s Country Express (See Clay-Goods Jambor-Eve)
Clay-Goods Jambor-Eve
Grand Jubilee
Legends in Concert
Doug Gabriel’s #1 Hits Tribute Show
Pierce Arrow
The Haygoods (See Clay-Goods Jambor-Eve)
Hamners Unbelievable Variety

New Year’s Eve firework displays welcoming the New Year will light the skies at Big Cedar Lodge, Big Cedar’s Top of the Rock and the Chateau on the Lake. The most easily accessible and closest to Branson is the Chateau’s display with convenient viewing on their grounds or along authorized areas on Highways 265 and 165 near the Chateau.

Branson Tourism Center’s Wood stated that “packaging your lodging with shows and attractions can save you money. Here are some examples of a way to have a great New Year’s celebration in Branson and save money at the same time through some Branson Tourism Center packages, New Years Eve In Branson, Haygood’s & Clay Cooper New Year In Branson and Legend’s Rockin New Year In Branson. For information on customizing a package for your particular desires, the latest and most complete information on New Year’s events, scheduling, tickets and lodging please feel free to contact the Branson Tourism Center (BTC), one of Branson’s largest and most respected vacation planning services and sellers of Branson show and attraction tickets and lodging. BTC can be reached by calling 800-785-1550 or through its website www.BransonTourismCenter.com.

“One thing is for sure,” said Wood,New Year’s in Branson is a special way to say goodbye to the old year and to start the New Year with a memory that might just last a lifetime.”

Did you know this about Christmas Week in Branson?

A small sample of the spectacular display of Christmas lights at Silver Dollar City's Old Time Christmas.

A small sample of the spectacular display of Christmas lights at Silver Dollar City’s Old Time Christmas.

Although many don’t know it, ‘Branson’s Christmas Week,’ the week between Christmas and New Year’s Day, offers the same type of excitement, adventure, shopping and entertainment for which Branson is famous,” said Annette Wood, the Director of Sales and Marketing for the Branson Tourism Center. She goes on to point out that because there is typically less people visiting Branson during that period everything seems to go at a more relaxed and leisurely pace with less lines and traffic.

Here a list of just some of the things you can expect to see and do during Branson’s Christmas Week:

1. Experience the Christmas lighting displays of Ozark Mountain Christmas – Although Christmas Day is past, all the major lighting displays including Silver Dollar City’s Old Time Christmas, the Branson Area Festival of Lights, Shepherd of the Hills Trail of Lights and the giant 30 foot nativity scene on top of Mount Branson overlooking Lake Taneycomo will continue to be displayed through Dec. 31.

2. Branson Shows – Although most of Branson’s shows are closed for the season, many of Branson’s most popular shows will be open during Branson’s Christmas Week presenting the live entertainment Branson is noted for. This includes The Acrobats of China, Amazing Pets, Billy Dean Live, Clay Cooper’s Country ExpressDixie Stampede, Grand Jubilee, Hamner’s Unbelievable Variety, The Haygoods,  Sight and Sounds spectacular Jonah, The Haygoods, Hughes Brothers Christmas Show, Legends in Concert, Paul Harris and the Cleverlys, Pierce Arrow and the Showboat Branson Belle along with many more.

3. Branson Attractions – The vast majority of Branson’s attractions will be open. This includes its oldest and most popular paid attraction, the international award winning Silver Dollar City presenting its “Old Time Christmas;” the Titanic Museum Attraction decked out for its beautiful “Edwardian Christmas;” the unique White Flight exhibit at the Butterfly Palace & Rainforest Adventure; National Tiger Sanctuary; Promised Land Zoo and others.

4. Branson Shopping – Branson’s legendary shopping is “always” open and Branson’s Christmas Week is no exception. From the unique “Branson Landing,” with its 100 retail stores, to the shops of Historic Downtown Branson, featuring “Dicks 5 & 10;” outlet malls such as “Tanger Outlet” and “The Meadows” and specialty shops offering arts and crafts and one of a kind items, Branson’s Christmas week shopping should not only satisfy the most avid shopper, but just might have a few “after Christmas sales” to boot.

5. New Years Eve – In addition to other New Years Eve celebrations, the following shows will have special New Year’s Eve celebrations:

Clay Cooper’s Country Express (See Clay-Goods Jambor-Eve)
Clay-Goods Jambor-Eve
Grand Jubilee
The Haygoods (See Clay-Goods Jambor-Eve)
Legends in Concert
Doug Gabriel’s #1 Hits Tribute Show
Pierce Arrow

BTC’s Wood points out that the off season scheduling of shows, limited seating and the fact that some Branson lodging facilities are closed requires some advance planning. She suggests that an easy way to avoid problems, save time and, in many cases money, is by simply calling the Branson Tourism Center, toll free at 1-800-785-1550 and talking with one of their Branson based Travel Planners who will be delighted to answer any questions and assist in making any show or lodging reservations. There is absolutely no charge for this service.

 

Material Connection

“White Flight” ensures a Branson “White Christmas”

Live "angel" sharing butterfly with family during "White Flight."

Live “angel” sharing butterfly with family during “White Flight.”

“‘White Flight’ at Branson’s Butterfly Palace & Rainforest Adventure adds new meaning to the term ‘White Christmas,'” said Annette Wood, the Director of Sales and Marketing for the Branson Tourism Center. “It’s another of those special Ozark Mountain Christmas activities that makes Christmas in Branson a special experience,” she added.

Brittney Smith, the General Manager of the Butterfly Palace & Rainforest Adventure said that “White Flight” is a unique exhibit consisting of thousands of white butterflies flying in a “rain forest” amid sparkling lights, colorful red and white poinsettias and living angel statutes to the sounds of beautiful Christmas music. She adds that this is the sixth Christmas season for this special limited engagement which runs through January 15,  2015.

The thousands of white butterflies, along with some surprise winged Christmas colored guests this year, are comprised of more than 30 different species of tropical butterflies with the most common being the “Paper Kite Butterfly,” also referred to as the “Rice Paper Butterfly.” The majority of the butterflies used in White Flight, as is the case with the majority of the exhibits at the Butterfly Palace, live out their average three week life span in a predator free environment, after they arrive, via air express, from tropical rain forests in their chrysalis (cocoon) stage, emerge, and are released into the exhibit, aviary.

In addition to the spectacular display of butterflies, “White Flight” also includes amazing and unique performances of the centuries old art form of “living statutes” in the form of “White Angels.” “The statutes slowly and subtly come to life as people walk through the exhibit and butterflies alight on and flutter around them. It might be just a change in the position of a head or the extension of a hand, but it’s fascinating to watch as the artists playing the angels interact with the guests.

“The aviary is decorated with a number of poinsettias and other flowers and highlighted by a large poinsettia Christmas tree that provides an excellent place for picture taking. The whole ‘White Flight’ experience, from the thousands of White Butterflies to the living angel statutes and beautiful music, is a unique experience for the whole family to enjoy.”

Smith points out that “White Flight” is in addition to all the other activities that the Butterfly Palace & Rainforest Adventure offers for the whole family to enjoy. These include “a Living Rainforest Science Center, the Emerald Forest Mirror Maze, a Rainforest Theater, the “Banyan Tree Bungee Adventure” and more.

Branson Tourism Center’s Wood reminds Branson visitors that “White Flight” is just one of the many special events that are part of “Ozark Mountain Christmas.” For additional information or tickets for “White Flight” and the Butterfly Palace & Rainforest Adventure, “Ozark Mountain Christmas” or any of Branson’s other shows and attractions or for lodging arrangements please contact the Branson Tourism Center one of Branson’s largest and most respected vacation planning services by calling 800-785-1550.

Branson visitors can count on the “big three” regardless of the weather

30,000 pound ship "sails" the stage and breaks up during the storm.

“Jonah’s” 30,000 pound ship “sails” the stage and breaks up in a storm during this spectacular production.

“As autumn fades into winter and weather has more of an impact on our outdoor activities one of the great things about Branson is that, regardless of the weather, there is always plenty of exciting and entertaining things to do” said Annette Wood, the Director of Sales and Marketing for the Branson Tourism Center. “Even from an outdoor perspective, the weather in Branson is often mild enough that people are able to enjoy golfing, hiking and fishing and other outdoor activities on a near year round basis, but Branson’s “big three,” its shows, attractions and shopping, are not weather dependent,” she continued.

Here’s a list of the “big three” and why Branson visitors can count on enjoying them regardless of the weather:

1. Branson Shows – With the exception of the Shepherd of the Hills Outdoor Play, whose last 2014 performance will be Oct. 25, Branson’s legendary live shows are held inside modern environmentally controlled theatres, with comfortable seating, the latest sound and lighting equipment and are performed by some of the best entertainers around. From shows such as Sight and Sounds spectacular production of Jonah, The Acrobats of China, Legends in Concert and Dolly Parton’s Dixie Stampede to the comedy and country music of shows such as Presleys’ Country Jubilee, Grand Jubilee, Billy Dean and Clay Cooper’s Country Express or the excitement of the Haygoods, Shoji Tabuchi, Dublin’s Irish Tenors and the Celtic Ladies and Mickey Gilley, Branson’s major entertainment offering, its live shows, goes on regardless of the weather.

The Titanic Museum Attraction boards passengers for a unique "voyage" regardless of the weather.

The Titanic Museum Attraction boards passengers for a unique “voyage” regardless of the weather.

2. Attractions – Cold or snow, heat or rain, the vast majority of Branson’s attractions are not impacted by weather. Regardless of the weather Branson visitors can take an exciting and entertaining voyage aboard the Titanic Museum Attraction or one of Branson’s other attractions such as the “Hollywood Wax Museum,” “Ripley’s Believe It or Not,” or the “Butterfly Palace & Rainforest Adventure” to mention a few. There’s indoor miniature golf at Grand Country or Laser Tag, G-Force drag race simulator and arcades at the Track Family Fun Parks that have the added advantage, weather permitting, of some of the coolest go-cart tracks around.

3. Shopping – Branson is noted for the quality and variety of its shopping. From outlet malls like “The Shoppes at Branson Meadows” and “Tanger Outlets” to the over 100 retail stores, restaurants and attractions at “Branson Landing” and the specialty shops and galleries of the historic downtown Branson shopping district, Branson offers a variety of shopping that is unmatched by any travel destination anywhere near its size. Factor in unique stores such as the “Copper Coin” and the unique “Dick’s 5 & 10,” along with dozens of specialty and gift stores, crafters and studios such as “Crain Creations” and it becomes a shoppers dream regardless of the weather.

Obviously there will be a few days of the year when ice, snow or some other weather condition might impact the total Branson area, but on a day to day basis, three of the major things Branson is noted for, its shows, attractions and shopping, are available for the enjoyment, fun and entertainment of its visitors regardless of the weather.