Category Archives: Branson

Branson’s indoor water parks take the “Brr” out of winter

Castle Rock’s yellow multi-story waterslide and Welk’s Splash-A-Torium.

“Winter weather curtails most outdoor swimming and aquatic activities,” said Annette Wood, Director of Sales and Marketing for the Branson Tourism Center (BTC). “However, Branson is blessed with not one, but three indoor water parks as well as many hotels that have heated indoor pools providing Branson visitors with a wide variety of choices to enjoy swimming and aquatic fun under ideal climate controlled conditions,” she added.

All three of the indoor water parks are directly associated with lodging facilities and offer the opportunity to enjoy swimming and other aquatic fun regardless of the temperature or weather outside. Here’s a brief description of each:

Welk Resort’s “Splash-A-Torium” is 10,000 square feet of indoor/outdoor water fun featuring “an outrageous 100 foot” plus indoor water slide, kid’s splash-zone, indoor/outdoor pool, and hot tub.” BTC’s Wood points out that the Resort has recently been redecorated and updated with deluxe and premier traditional rooms that include plush amenities, high-end finishes, and a decor reflecting the unique charm of the Ozarks with its vibrant colors and interesting textures. In room amenities include complimentary WiFi, 32-inch LCD widescreen televisions, coffee makers with high quality coffees and teas, high speed wireless internet and many other exceptional features.

The Resort even has its own theatre! The Welk Resort Theatre is not only home to one of Branson’s most popular new shows, Million Dollar Quartet, but features limited engagement performances by stars such Daniel O’Donnell, Kris Kristofferson and others throughout the year.

Castle Rock Resort and Water Park provides “a truly weather-proof vacation destination for the whole family” where they “can splash & play in the climate controlled 84 degree temperature of its indoor water park. Its 40,000 square feet of waterpark wonderland features two 500-gallon tipping buckets, indoor and outdoor kiddie pools, waterfalls, two three-story thrill slides, themed water statues, and a multi-level sun deck. The resort’s water park provides fun for everyone, from tiny tots to adults, as well as tastefully appointed comfortable rooms.

Grand Country Inn, has Missouri’s first indoor water park, “Splash Country Indoors.” Open 365 days a year, it offers 20,000 square feet “of squirting, falling and tumbling water fun, including a three-level treehouse with interactive water play features on each level, two winding tube tunnels, a 1,000 gallon tipping bucket which tips every eight minutes, doing you know what to all those below, and much more. The Grand Country Complex, includes the Inn; Grand Country Buffett; The Grand Country Music Hall, home of the Grand Jubilee, Amazing Pets, Comedy Jamboree, Down Home Country, and other great shows; indoor and outdoor mini golf courses, and the Fun Spot Arcade.

These are the indoor water parks in Branson, but many Branson Hotels and Lodging facilities such as the Barrington Hotel & Suites, Grand Plaza, Honeysuckle Inn and Conference Center, Quality Inn Branson, Quality Inn on the Strip, Radisson Hotel, Residence Inn Marriott, and others have heated indoor pools. In addition, the hotels listed above are participants in Branson Tourism Center’s (BTC) Lowest Rate Lock Guarantee Program.

Book your reservation through BTC, and subject to the programs minimal conditions, the price you pay for your lodging is guaranteed to be the lowest rate available. If you find a lower price offered for the same room on the same dates, anytime between when you book your room and when you arrive in Branson, BTC will match the lower rate.

BTC’s Wood also points out that during the winter months, especially on the weekends, the demand for rooms at these facilities often outstrips availability. She recommends advance reservations and offers the assistance of one of BTC’s locally based Travel Planners to assist in helping to find the ideal facility to fit your family’s wants and budget and make reservations. There is no charge for this service and they may be reached by calling 1-800-785-1550.

DOMC

Have you thought about giving the special Christmas gift of Branson memories?

What a fantastic way to give someone the Christmas gift of Branson and memories that could last a lifetime!

What a fantastic way to give someone the Christmas gift of Branson and memories that could last a lifetime!

As it gets closer to Christmas, it seemingly becomes harder to find that perfect gift for everyone,” said Preston Garrison, Director of Operations for the Branson Tourism Center.  “Most who have been to Branson have wonderful fun filled memories of their experience so, why not share the gift of Branson with employees, associates, friends, and others on your Christmas List?”

Garrison points out that the Branson Tourism Center not only makes it easy to give the gift of wonderful Branson memories this Christmas season, but provides added value with a special bonus! Purchase a Branson Tourism Center Gift Card* of at least $100 and get a separate $25 Bonus Card**, free-of-charge, with each card purchased on or before December 22, 2016! Buy one $100.00 Branson Tourism Center Gift Card and get a $25.00 Bonus Card, buy five individual $100.00 Gift Cards and receive five $25.00 Bonus Cards.

Gift Cards and Bonus Cards are redeemable for show tickets, admission to attractions, lodging, vacation packages, and other services offered by Branson Tourism Center with only airline tickets, golf, and car rentals excluded. The Branson Tourism Center, established in 2003, is one of Branson’s largest and most respected vacation planning services; has sold well over 4.5 million show and attraction tickets and hundreds of thousands of room nights to Branson visitors; enjoys an A+ rating with the BBB, with which it has been an accredited member since 2003; and can reserve nearly any Branson Show, Attraction, or Lodging for you.

*** This offer has expired ***

Whether you give it to yourself or someone else, it’s hard to imagine a better value on giving the gift of Branson this Christmas or a more convenient way to do it! Shop from the comfort and convenience of your home by either calling 1-800-493-4584 or click here  to shop through Branson Tourism Center’s web site www.BransonTourismCenter.Com.

*Note: Gift cards are only redeemable for show tickets, admission to attractions, lodging, vacation packages, and other services offered by Branson Tourism Center. The only exclusions are airline tickets, golf, and car rentals.
**Note: Bonus cards will be emailed and become valid January 1, 2017 and can only be used for orders placed between the dates of January 1, 2017 and December 31, 2017, and are only redeemable for show tickets, admission to attractions, lodging, vacation packages, and other services offered by Branson Tourism Center. The only exclusions are airline tickets, golf, and car rental.

An old Branson tradition just keeps shuffling on

Two popular Branson shows, AYO starring the Voices of Glory and SIX will be shuffling off to new theaters for the 2017 season.

Two popular Branson shows, AYO starring the Voices of Glory and SIX, are among the those that will be shuffling off to new theaters for the 2017 season.

Not to be confused with the “Shindig Shuffle,” that’s part of Branson’s unique fun filled Ozark Mountain Shindig, the traditional, “Branson shuffle” is well underway. Ever since The Baldknobbers started it all and Presleys’ Country Jubilee opened the first show on what is now the famed “Branson Strip,” decades ago; the Branson Shuffle has been a part of Branson’s live entertainment.

The Baldknobbers, “shuffled” from their original location in historic downtown Branson before settling into their current location on the Branson Strip in 1969. Ironically, Branson’s iconic first show on the Branson Strip, Presleys’ Country Jubilee, has never been involved in the Branson Shuffle, and will be celebrating their 50th year in their original location during 2017.

It’s uncertain whether the “shuffle” relates more to the shuffling of cards or a dance, but one thing is certain, it does involve movement and change. Each year, there is a “shuffle” as some shows move from one theatre to another into the locations and timeslots that they believe will best enable them to develop, grow, and provide Branson visitors with the best entertainment experience. Here’s the current status of the Branson Shuffle, sorted alphabetically, as of December 14, 2016:

#1 Hits of the 60s: Clay Cooper Theatre
Abba Tribute: Thank You for the Music: Hamners’ Variety Theater
Amazing Acrobats of Shanghai: Mickey Gilley Grand Shanghai Theatre*
AYO staring the Voices of Glory: Starlite
Billy Dean: Jim Stafford Theatre
Beach Boys California Dreamin: Hamners’ Variety Theater
Blackwoods: Dutton Theatre
George Dyer: Americana
Raiding the Country Vault: Starlite Theatre
SIX: Hughes Brothers Theatre

The result of the Branson Shuffle is a source of excitement and anticipation during this time of the year in Branson. It’s born not only because of the physical move, but the show changes and innovation that often accompanies such moves the next season because of the location and physical attributes of the new venue.

The Branson Tourism Center’s Branson Show List, updated on a daily basis as information becomes available, is Branson’s most current list of shows, schedules, ticketing and other information. If more information on the status of the Branson Shuffle for Branson’s 2017 shows is desired, please call one of Branson Tourism Center’s Branson based Travel Planners at 1-800-785-1550. They will be delighted to answer any questions you might have about Branson shows, hotels, or attractions and assist you in planning your Branson trip. There is no charge for this service and they are available daily, except Christmas Day, from 8:00 AM to 9:30 PM.

* The “Mickey Gilley Theatre” through the 2016 season.

Unique Christmas Sweepstakes blesses winner and local Branson charity

161212 Christmas Sweepstakes Composite

Two “Winners,” Onyinye Elochukwu,” who won the $500 Grand Prize and the American Red Cross of Southern Missouri, who was designated by her to receive an additional $500 from the Branson Tourism Center.

When Mrs. Onyinye Elochukwu, of Sacramento, California, went to open her email on the morning of December 12, she certainly didn’t expect to find out that she had won Branson Tourism Center’s 2016 Ozark Mountain Christmas Sweepstakes. She said, “When I opened my email and found out that I had won I was so excited! I read it twice before I even grasped that I had won.”

Onyinye, a stay at home mom taking care of a two-and-a-half-year-old son, entered the contest through Facebook and really didn’t think she had a chance to win. Now that she’s won, she said, “I’m so grateful. It couldn’t have come at a better time; what a wonderful Christmas gift!”

“To us at the Branson Tourism Center, Christmas is all about giving, so in keeping with that spirit, we decided to have a special Christmas Sweepstake centered around the joy and spirit of Christmas giving,” said Tammy Johnson, the Vice President | General Manager of the Branson Tourism Center. “We offer our congratulations to Mrs. Elochukwu and share her excitement.”

Johnson also points out that another important element of the Sweepstake was that the Winner was empowered to brighten the Christmas of a local Branson charity by designating it, from those listed, to receive a gift of $500.00 from the Branson Tourism Center. Onyinye, who has never visited Branson, but hopes to do so someday, selected the American Red Cross of Southern Missouri because she is more familiar with the Red Cross saying,” I see what they do on TV, on-line, and in social media and I like what they do to help people in times of need.”

Stacy Burks, Executive Director of the American Red Cross of Southern Missouri said, “We’re so grateful to Mrs. Elochukwu and the Branson Tourism Center for thinking of the American Red Cross during this season of giving. Our volunteers are ready to go when disaster strikes whether home fire, flood, or tornado and this donation will help provide relief and help to community members during their time of need.”

 

Six awesome reasons why you don’t want to miss Branson’s Christmas Week!

Silver Dollar City's Old Time Christmas, New Year's Eve with Legends in Concert, the Amazing Pets Show ,and Tanger Outlet.

Silver Dollar City’s Old Time Christmas, New Year’s Eve with Legends in Concert, the Amazing Pets Show ,and Tanger Outlets are just a few of the almost infinite choices awaiting Branson visitors during Branson’s Christmas Week.

Branson’s Christmas Week, the week between Christmas and New Year’s Day, offers Branson visitors the same world class shopping and entertainment experience that makes Branson one of the premier vacation destinations in America,” said Preston Garrison, Director of Operations for the Branson Tourism Center. “From tigers and butterflies, to acrobats, drive through Christmas lighting displays, museums, world class shopping, New Year’s Eve celebrations second to none, and so much more; if you’re looking for fun, entertainment, excitement and adventure as part of your Christmas vacation then Branson’s Christmas Week in Branson is the place for you!” he added.

Here’s a list of six reasons why:

1.Silver Dollar City’s Old Time Christmas Festival: Silver Dollar City’s Old Time Christmas Festival is one of the Nation’s top Christmas events. Its spectacular display of five million Christmas lights throughout the park, entertainment, parade, Broadway style shows, and much more has been recognized and featured nationally by USA Today, CNN Travel, The Travel Channel, Good Morning America and many others.

Although the award winning 1880s styled theme park, lit with over 5 million sparkling Christmas lights, is filled with shows; crafts; unique shopping; food; weather permitting, dozens of exciting rides and demonstrating craftsmen; and other activities, something special begins to happen each evening at dusk, in the Square on Main Street. First, the 5-Story Special Effects Christmas Tree comes to life, with its 350,000 colorful sparkling LED lights, choreographed to Christmas music, and making over 100 light changes per second. In its glow, “the most famous reindeer of all” leads Rudolph’s Holly Jolly™ Christmas Light Parade with its nine musical floats, illuminated with 200,000 ultra-bright LED lights; 33 colorful costumed characters, including Bumble the Abominable Snowman, 14-foot moose characters, 12-foot tall elves and 10-foot candy canes, plus penguins, elves and a troupe of marching wooden soldiers.”

2. Branson Shows: Although many of Branson’s shows are closed for the season, some of its most popular shows will be open during Branson’s Christmas Week presenting the live entertainment for which Branson is noted. This includes, in alphabetical order, The Acrobats of China, Amazing Pets, Clay Cooper’s Country Music Express, Comedy Jamboree, Dixie Stampede, Grand Jubilee, Hamner’s Unbelievable Variety, The Haygoods, Hughes Brothers Christmas Show, Legends in Concert, Million Dollar Quartet, Moses, Pierce Arrow and the Showboat Branson Belle along with many more.

3. Branson Attractions: In addition to Silver Dollar City, the majority of Branson’s other attractions will be open offering visitors a range of exciting adventures and activities. How about an up close encounter with the tigers and other big cats at the National Tiger Sanctuary; a ziplining adventure on Branson Zip Lines, or an entertaining interactive experience aboard Branson’s Titanic Museum attraction. In addition to everything else the Titanic offers its passengers on a daily basis, it’s celebrating its spectacular Christmas and Winter Celebration, as magically, inside and out, the ship “hails the sights, sounds, and joy of the season” and is aglow with glittering lights, festive decorations, and the spirit of the Holidays.

And that’s just the beginning! With museums as varied at the Branson Dinosaur Museum and the World Largest Toy Museum, the unique “White Flight” exhibit at the Butterfly Palace & Rainforest Adventure; the Promised Land Zoo, hiking on one of our beautiful Ozark trails, golf, fishing, and so much more, it’s hard to imagine a travel destination, anywhere near Branson’s size that could offer more.

4. Spectacular Christmas Lighting Displays: Although Christmas Day is past, all the major drive through Christmas lighting displays will remain open through December 31. This includes the Shepherd of the Hills Trail of Lights, Ozark Mountain Christmas Lights & Village, Branson’s Gift of Lights and the giant 30 foot nativity scene on top of Mount Branson overlooking Lake Taneycomo and historic downtown Branson.

5. Branson Shopping: Shopping is an important part of the Branson experience and Branson’s Christmas Week is no exception. From the quaint specialty shops offering arts and crafts and one of a kind items; to the shops of Historic Downtown Branson, featuring “Dicks 5 & 10,” the unique “Branson Landing,” with its 100 retail stores, and outlet malls such as “Tanger Outlets” and “The Meadows,” Branson’s Christmas Week shopping will satisfy the most avid shopper.

6. New Year’s Eve: From the midnight fireworks at the Chateau on the Lake to a New Year’s Eve party while cruising Lake Taneycomo aboard Main Street Lake Cruises Landing Princess, a 100 foot luxury yacht, or one of the unique celebrations by one of Branson’s shows, both 2016 and Branson’s Christmas Week fade away and 2017 emerges as only Branson can do it. It’s hard to imagine a more unique, entertaining or exciting New Year’s Eve than one spent with some of Branson’s most popular shows as they welcome in 2017 with their unique New Year’s Eve celebrations including:

Clay-Goods Jambor-Eve (Clay Cooper and Haygoods joint celebration)
Grand Jubilee
Hamners’ Unbelievable Variety Show
Hughes Brothers New Year’s Eve Show
Legends in Concert
Million Dollar Quartet
Pierce Arrow

Branson Tourism Center’s Garrison advises advanced planning and reservations for any trip to Branson during the Christmas Season because of the off season scheduling of shows, limited seating, and the fact that some Branson lodging facilities are closed. He 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.

 

Five reasons why Thanksgiving in Branson is so fascinating!

From the splendor or millions of Christmas Lights, to a Thanksgiving meal aboard a luxury yacht, shows from our families to yours, and world class shopping Thanksgiving in Branson is fun, unique, and inspiring.

The splendor or millions of Christmas Lights, a Thanksgiving meal aboard a luxury yacht, shows from our families to yours, world class shopping, and so much more help make Thanksgiving in Branson the unique fascinating event it is.

“From feasting, to entertaining, shopping, and so much more, Branson’s Thanksgiving cornucopia is overflowing with fun, excitement, adventure, and the spirit of Christmas,” said Preston Garrison, Director of Operations for the Branson Tourism Center. Garrison suggests five reasons why spending Thanksgiving in Branson is a fascinating way to celebrate Thanksgiving while having fun and making special family memories that could last a lifetime:

1. Bountiful Choice of Thanksgiving Meals: From the traditional Thanksgiving fare like that served at the Welk Resort’s Stage Door Restaurant to mouthwatering Thanksgiving buffets and brunches such as those served at Grand Country, College of the Ozark’s Keeter Center, and the Chateau on the Lake, non-traditional Thanksgiving food such as the Italian cuisine at Florentina’s Italian Ristorante, and dozens more Branson diners will have a bountiful choice Thanksgiving dining options for every pallet and budget including a scrumptious traditional Thanksgiving dinner served aboard Main Street Lake Cruises’ Landing Princess, amid the luxury of a 100 foot yacht, while cruising on beautiful Lake Taneycomo.

2. Branson’s Great Shows: Although some of Branson’s shows will not be performing on Thanksgiving Day, many of its most popular shows will, including the Acrobats of China, Amazing Pets, Andy Williams Christmas Extravaganza, Grand Jubilee Hughes Brothers Christmas Show, Legends in Concert, Million Dollar Quartet, New Jersey Nights, Puttin’ on the Ritz, The Haygoods, The Lettermen, Shoji Tabuchi, and many more. The full complement of Branson shows, including Billy Dean In Concert With Jarrett, Christmas Wonderland, Clay Cooper’s Country Express, Moses, Presleys’ Country Jubilee, SIX, The Texas Tenors, will resume their normal performance schedules for the remainder of the season on November 25.

3.  Silver Dollar City’s Old Time Christmas: Silver Dollar City’s Old Time Christmas Festival is one of America’s top holiday events. Its spectacular display of five million Christmas lights throughout the park, entertainment, parade, Broadway style shows, and much more has been recognized and featured nationally by USA Today, CNN Travel, The Travel Channel, Good Morning America and many others. One of the many features of this festival happens each evening at dusk, in the Square on Main Street with the lighting of the 5-Story Special Effects Christmas Tree. As it sparkles to life with its 350,000 colorful sparkling LED lights, choreographed to Christmas music, and making over 100 light changes per second; it signals the beginning of Rudolph’s Holly Jolly™ Christmas Light Parade led by “the most famous reindeer of all.” Rudolph leads a spectacular parade of “nine musical, lighted floats, illuminated with 200,000 ultra-bright LED lights accompanied. “by 33 colorful costumed characters, including Bumble the Abominable Snow Monster, 14-foot moose characters, 12-foot tall elves and 10-foot candy canes, plus penguins, elves and a troupe of marching wooden soldiers” that will amaze and delight all ages.

4. Fun, Attractions and Activities for Everyone: Many of Branson’s attractions will be open on Thanksgiving Day, and all over the weekend, including the extremely popular Branson Titanic Museum Attraction, as it celebrates its unique and beautiful Winter Celebration filled with beautiful decorations, unique shopping, and different special events, including, over Thanksgiving Weekend, 1500 luminaries casting a beautiful glow over its entrance. How about three spectacular drive through light displays including Shepherd of the Hills Trail of Lights, Ozark Mountain Christmas Lights and Village, and Branson Gift of Lights; a round of golf at one of Branson’s championship courses, or any one of dozens more exciting attractions and activities?

5. Shopping: Branson provides a world class shopping experience anytime of the year, and that is obvious over Thanksgiving, as Black Friday, and Christmas shopping takes center stage. Branson’s major shopping areas, such as Branson Landing, Tanger Outlets, The Shoppes at Branson Meadows, historic downtown Branson, Grand Village Shops, Branson Mill Craft Village and its more than 250 different boutiques, specialty shops, national chain stores, flea markets, craft malls, and famous-name outlet stores provide a wonderful opportunity to “shop till you drop” while making it easier to find that special gift for that special person. National chain stores in Branson will have the same Thanksgiving sale hours as elsewhere, and just about all Branson retailers and shops will be having Black Friday specials. Not surprisingly, the Friday after Thanksgiving is the busiest shopping day of the year in Branson.

For additional information on Thanksgiving in Branson, Ozark Mountain Christmas or for information or tickets for any of Branson’s shows and attractions, or for lodging arrangements, please contact the Branson Tourism Center by calling 1-800-785-1550 or through its website Branson Tourism Center.com.

 

Shouldn’t one of these fantastic museums be part of your Branson experience?

Titanic Museum's full sized Grand Staircase, two story high T-Rex from Dinosaur Museum, and the entrance to the Worlds Biggest Toy Museum Complex.

Titanic Museum’s full sized Grand Staircase, two story high T-Rex at the  Dinosaur Museum, and the entrance to the Worlds Biggest Toy Museum Complex.

“It has been said that Branson has something for everyone, and that’s true not only in terms of general categories of things to do, but with choices within each category,” said Annette Wood, Director of Sales and Marketing for the Branson Tourism Center. “For instance, within the general category of Branson shows there is a wide variety of choices ranging from Sight & Sound’s biblical spectacular Moses to the Million Dollar Quartet, Haygoods and almost 100 more,” she added.

Wood goes on to point out that it’s the same thing with Branson Attractions, lakes, shopping, and many other categories of activities that Branson offers including one that many Branson visitors overlook, “Museums.” Some, such as Branson’s most popular museum, the amazing Titanic Museum Attraction, are hard to miss, but others are not as obvious. Here’s a list of six Branson Museums that can add excitement and adventure to your Branson experience:

Bransons Titanic Museum Attraction: This one half size scale replica of the “R.M.S. Titanic,” towering high above the Branson strip, is one of Branson’s most popular attractions! More than simply a museum, it’s an interactive adventure that shares the stories of those who were onboard for the famous ocean voyage that has fascinated the world for more than a century with hundreds of artifacts, a crew that interacts with passengers, many interactive activities, and so much more. From beginning to end it’s a special experience. Here’s a neat article entitled 13 Things “kids” should know about the Branson Titanic Museum Attraction that describes this unique Branson experience. This museum is open year-round and is not weather dependent.

Branson Auto & Farm Museum: At any given time, this beautiful 90,000 square foot museum provides an opportunity to take a unique stroll through the vintage chrome, modern designs, high performance, and legendary styling of about 200 classic and collectible vehicles and 180 farm tractors, implements and buggies on display. Its 5,000 square foot gift shop offers a unique selection of apparel, books, pedal cars, vintage toys, and other items. With inventory changing regularly, every visit to the museum is a unique adventure! This museum is open year-round and is not weather dependent.

The Ralph Foster Museum: Located at the College of the Ozarks, this museum is commonly referred to as the “Smithsonian of the Ozarks” and has the mission of collecting, preserving, interpreting, and exhibiting items related to the Ozarks region, its history and culture. Probably, the most well-known of the museum’s displays is an original truck from the Beverly Hillbillies’ 1960’s television show. Other displays include an intact, antique dental office to a display of Rose O’Neill’s world-famous Kewpie Dolls. The museum is not weather dependent and is open year-round except for the month of January, Thanksgiving week, including the weekend before and after Thanksgiving, and mid December through the end of December.

Veterans Memorial Museum: This museum pays heartfelt tribute to the men and women who bravely served our country.  It features more than 2,000 exhibits commemorating the American soldier in WWI, WWII, Korea, Vietnam, the Persian Gulf, and more recent conflicts, including historical artifacts, murals, and sculptures in touching tribute to American soldiers, veterans, and especially those who made the ultimate sacrifice to protect our freedoms. This museum is open year-round and is not weather dependent.

World’s Largest Toy Museum Complex: Give the family a break from computers, tablets, video games, and cell phones and bring them to 25,000 square feet of the most unique and interesting museum experiences available anywhere! In fact, it’s five different museums in one where “Memories unfold and imagination abounds.” The Worlds Largest Toy Museum contains more than 1,000,000 toys. See cast iron fire trucks, slot cars, Hot Wheels, tin toys, the very first Barbie Doll, and hundreds of other historical toys like Power Rangers and Howdy Doody, and baseballs autographed by sports heroes like Joe DiMaggio and Cal Ripken. The complexes’ other museums include “The National BB Gun Museum” and a special GI Joe display; The Harold B. Wright Museum containing the original manuscript of the best-selling book, “The Shepherd of the Hills” along with Wrights personal collection of furniture and paintings; “The Stearnsy Bear Museum;” and “The World of Checkers Museum.” This museum is open year-round and is not weather dependent.

Branson Dinosaur Museum: Experience dinosaurs up close and personal, from everyone’s favorite, the enormous “Tyrannosaurus Rex,” fondly referred to as “T Rex,” to the “tiny,” comparatively speaking, Four-Winged Microraptor, measuring only one-foot-tall. Thanks to the talented paleo-artists, who used actual dinosaur bones to mold the incredible bodies of these dinosaurs, you will almost expect them to come to life at any moment. See the article entitled Branson Dinosaur Museum home to T- Rex and his dinosaur pals for more information. This museum is open year-round and is not weather dependent.

For more information on these and other amazing Branson attractions, shows, or lodging, please call one of Branson Tourism Center’s Branson based Travel Planners at 1-800-875-1550. They will be delighted to answer any questions you might have about Branson, its shows, hotels, or attractions and assist you with reservations to help ensure that you obtain the best available seating at shows and the accommodations you desire. There is no charge for this service and they are available daily, except Christmas Day, from 8:00 AM to 9:30 PM.

It’s no illusion, the diversity of Branson music shows is absolutely amazing!

The Million Dollar Quartet, David Brooks as Jerry Lee Lewis, left, on the piano; Brad Waters as "Carl Perkins;" Austin Wilson as "Jay Perkins," the bass player; Tyler K. Hunter as "Elvis Presley;" and Cliff Wright as "Johnny Cash"

The Million Dollar Quartet, David Brooks as Jerry Lee Lewis, left, on the piano; Brad Waters as “Carl Perkins;” Austin Wilson as “Jay Perkins,” the bass player; Tyler K. Hunter as “Elvis Presley;” and Cliff Wright as “Johnny Cash”

“From the magic of Illusionist Rick Thomas to Reza Edge of Illusion, and many in-between, Branson is blessed with a variety of some of the finest illusionists in the world, but one thing is for certain, the quality and diversity of Branson’s music shows is no illusion!” said Annette Wood, Director of Sales and Marketing for the Branson Tourism Center. “Here’s four shows, from our list of Most Popular and Requested Branson Shows, that illustrate the point,” she added.

Million Dollar Quartet: A singular moment, when four of the most extraordinary musical talents of our time, Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis, and Carl Perkins, came together for one unforgettable night, is captured in this amazing production based on an actual event! Even neater, is the fact that the music in this show, songs such as That’s All Right, I Walk the Line, Riders in the Sky, Hound Dog, Peace in the Valley, Whole Lotta Shakin’ Goin’ On, Blue Suede Shoes, and many more, are songs many already know and grew up with, not songs specifically written for the show. When I saw this show I said, “Over the last three decades, I have seen many Branson shows of all types, but never one like the Million Dollar Quartet! An outstanding cast, timeless music that everyone knows, and a great story line combine with the show’s unique set and great production to create an incredible entertainment experience for the whole family that should not be missed.”

The Haygoods: An amazing Branson experience! Excellent choreography, exquisite harmonies, state-of-the-art sound and special effects, a delightful sense of humor, and energy that never quits, you get it all in one show from one phenomenal family! In a recent review of this show I wrote, “Based on over 30 years of seeing Branson shows…I can testify to the fact that The Haygoods show is a WOW, WOW, and WOW, on a Three WOW Index with three WOWs being as high as you can get! From the ‘Get go,’ it’s two hours of the most unique, innovative, talented, energetic, personable, and exciting entertainment you will ever experience on a Branson stage.”

Clay Cooper’s Country Music Express: This show is great country music and so much more. When you take an entertainer like Clay Cooper and blend in a great band, some of the best dancers and choreographed dance routines in Branson, the comedy of Matt Gumm, the rope and gun handling performance of Johnny Lonestar and the strategically placed vocal performances of other cast members, it is over two hours of the finest nonstop “express,” or otherwise, entertainment in Branson hosted by a performer who can work an audience as beautifully as he sings and his wife choreographs and dances.”

The amazing SIX.

The amazing SIX.

SIX: This unique show is another outstanding example of the diversity of Branson’s music shows. You will hear the sounds of percussion, strings, horns and other instruments, but they’re just nowhere to be found! You will experience two hours of the most unique, exciting, and memorable music you have ever heard; great vocals along with the sound of an actual band with all of the sounds, both vocal and instrumental, coming from the same place, the mouths of the SIX Knudsen brothers. It truly is an amazing thing to see, hear, and experience and something that will not soon be forgotten.

For more information on these or other great Branson shows or lodging please contact the Branson Tourism Center, one of Branson’s largest and most respected vacation planning services by visiting www.BransonTourismCenter.com, or calling 1-800-785-1550

 

 

Just how good are you at Dixie Stampede Trivia?

The beautiful horses, color, pageantry of Dixie Stampede's Finale Finale .*

The beautiful horses, color, and pageantry of Dixie Stampede’s Finale .*

Dolly Parton’s Dixie Stampede is easily Branson’s most visited dinner attraction,” said Preston Garrison, the Director of Operations for the Branson Tourism Center. With a twinkle in his eye, he added, “No surprise there, after all it’s billed as ‘The World’s Most Visited Dinner Attraction,’ but I’ve always wondered, just how many horseshoes do all those horses use each year?”

That got me thinking, outside of the fact that the answer to that question would make a great trivia question, that there’s an awful lot that goes into creating the fun, adventure, pageantry, and excitement that those attending Dixie Stampede get to experience. Who better to turn to for answers and information about that than John Richardson, Director of Sales and Marketing for the Dixie Stampede Dinner Attraction?

Richardson shared a list of facts that was developed by Dixie Stampede, in response to questions that guests have asked about the show and its animals, that “illustrates the scope and scale of its production.” We thought it would be fun to take that information and present it in a Question and Answer (Q&A) format, and hope that you find it as interesting and fascinating as we did:

Q: Where does the white sand for the arena floor come from and how much is used each year?
A: Over 200 tons of white sand is “imported” from South Carolina for the arena floor each year.

Q: Why is that sand used and not some other material?
A: It creates a surface that is dust-free and gentler for the horses’ legs.

Q: How many yards of lace and ribbon are used on each Dixie Stampede Southern Belle costume?
A: Twenty yards.

Q: What are the dimensions of the “Conestoga Wagons” used in the show?
A: Each measures 25’8” long by 9’ high and is a true replica of those that carried settlers westward on the great wagon trains.

Q: What kind of horses are pulling the Wagons?
A: Each is pulled by teams of 2000-pound Belgian draft horses, known for their intelligence, size and strength.

Q: How many white doves of peace are released during the Patriotic Finale?
A: More than 50 which are raised and cared for on the Dolly Parton’s Dixie Stampede premises. Doves are always born in pairs; the female hatches first followed by the more aggressive male.

Q: How much grain do the stars of Dolly Parton’s Dixie Stampede, the 32 magnificent horses, consume each year?
A: 104,000 pounds of grain per year.

Q: How many bales of hay do they consume?
A: The horses consume 3,500 bales of hay per year, weighing approximately 262,500 pounds.

Q: How many horseshoes do the Dixie Stampede horses go through each year?
A: Over 1,152.

Q: What are the horses bedded on?
A: 13,200 bales of hay and approximately 528,000 pounds of pine shavings each year which is kept clean and dry by round-the-clock stable hands.

Q: How much does the Dolly Parton’s Dixie Stampede’s buffalo herd weigh?
A: It weighs in at more than four tons.

The "Roman Ride" through a ring of fire.

The “Roman Ride” through a ring of fire.*

Q: What is the “Roman Ride?”
A: It’s an historic type of trick riding, featuring a team of two horses moving side-by-side with one rider standing astride them with one foot on each horse. Dixie Stampede’s Roman Riders have the added degrees of difficulty of splitting columns of fire, being surrounded by firefly torches, and ultimately jumping through the Hoop of Fire.

Q: What does its “signature four-course feast include?
A: Original creamy vegetable soup and a hot homemade biscuit; a tender whole rotisserie chicken; hickory-smoked barbequed pork loin; buttery corn on the cob; herb-basted potatoes; Dixie Stampede’s very own specialty dessert, and unlimited beverages, including Pepsi products. [Author’s Note: Having eaten it a number of times over the years, I can testify that it’s delicious and I have never left hungry!]

For more information or tickets for Dolly Parton’s Dixie Stampede please feel free to contact the Branson Tourism Center, one of Branson’s largest and most respected vacation planning services at 1-800-785-1550 or through its website www.BransonTourismCenter.com.

* Courtesy of Dolly Parton’s Dixie Stampede

Does anything say Branson more than these six epic attractions?

Three of Branson's epic attractions, Silver Dollar City's iconic Wildfire Coaster with an incredible view of Table Rock Lake, the Sight & SoundTheatre, and the Titanic.

Three of Branson’s epic attractions, Silver Dollar City’s iconic Wildfire Coaster with an incredible view of Table Rock Lake, the Sight & Sound Theatre, home of “Moses,” and the Titanic Museum Attraction.

“Branson is blessed with a seeming list of infinite possibilities for fun, excitement, and entertainment all headlined by its fabulous selection of live shows and great attractions,” said Preston Garrison, the Director of Operations for the Branson Tourism Center. He went on to say that, as the word “attraction” is commonly defined, “a thing or place that draws visitors by providing something of interest or pleasure,” all of Branson’s shows, and many other activities, could meet that definition.

When asked, “In 2016, of all of Branson’s attractions, which specific attraction do you believe is the most popular,” he smiled, shook his head, and said that it depended on a lot of factors, but that he’d bet it would come from this list of six epic Branson attractions:

Silver Dollar City: “When it comes to phenomenal, world-class theme parks, it doesn’t get any better than Branson’s biggest paid attraction,” the 1880s styled Silver Dollar City! “Live music, thrilling rides, demonstrating craftsmen, incredible food, exceptional shopping, amusements for the little ones, seasonal and themed festivals and events, and even more awaits you!”

Branson Landing: Is the largest and most unique shopping attraction in Branson. The 95-acre, $435 million public/private multiuse project spans 1.5 miles of waterfront on Lake Taneycomo, and is conveniently located adjacent to historic downtown Branson. It’s combination of luxury condos and over 120 retail stores, kiosks and restaurants including “eclectic shops, national retailers, fine dining, intimate cafes and nightspots,” Main Street Lake Cruises, two floating restaurants, and the spectacular free Branson Landing Fountains, makes it one of the most popular attractions in Branson.

Titanic Museum Attraction: Not simply a museum, it’s an interactive attraction that shares the stories of those who were onboard for the famous ocean voyage that has fascinated the world for more than a century.” This attraction features special tributes, exhibits, and interactive activities that are as much fun and adventure as they are educational and inspiring.

Dixie Stampede: Dolly Parton’s “Dixie Stampede” is the perfect family destination in Branson for exciting entertainment and a fantastic four-course feast! Called the World’s Most Visited Dinner Attraction™, “Dixie” boasts a variety of fun features that include a lumberjack relay, racing pigs, buffalo, and 32 beautiful horses showcased in captivating equestrian feats.

Sight and Sound Theatre: With its 300-foot surround stage, animals, and spectacular productions Sight and Sound Theatre brings the epic stories of the bible to life in an exciting, inspiring, and entertaining manner. The story of Moses, its latest production and easily Branson’s most popular show, tells the story of one man’s journey from being a humble and broken man to becoming the follower of God who delivers the children of Israel from enslavement. It is presented by a phenomenal cast with astonishing sets, absolutely amazing special effects, a brilliant score, and stunning costumes.

Table Rock Lake: An impoundment of the White River behind the 6,423 foot-long Table Rock Dam was completed in 1959 and is easily one of Branson’s most epic attractions. Its 43,100 surface acres and 745 miles of shoreline provides a virtual aquatic paradise for Branson residents and visitors to fish, boat and play. It is the symbol of the natural beauty that is an inherent part of the Branson experience and the home of the Showboat Branson Belle.

For more information on these attractions 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 visiting www.BransonTourismCenter.com, or calling 1-800-785-1550.