Category Archives: Events

What you should know about Branson’s “Cruising With Stars”


Cruise with SIX one of Branson's hottest groups on the ...

Cruise with SIX one of Branson’s hottest shows on…

In my 28 years in Branson, it has been my personal experience that Branson entertainers are not only some of the best entertainers anywhere, but the most accessible to their audiences. That accessibility is taken to new levels through Branson Tourism Center’s exclusive Cruise With The Stars entertainment experience combining two great entertainment activities, seeing the Branson show of the star(s) you will be cruising with and going on a VIP luncheon cruise with them into one special unique event.

The 100 foot luxury yacht "Landing Princess."

The 100 foot luxury yacht “Landing Princess.”

You will attend the show of the entertainer(s) you will be cruising with and have an unparalleled opportunity to interact with them while cruising aboard Main Street Lake Cruises 100 foot luxury yacht the Landing Princess. This includes a beautiful scenic cruise on Lake Taneycomo, lunch, opportunities for photos, autographs and interacting with them in a unique up close and personal experience that is available only to those participating in Branson Tourism Centers exclusive Cruise With the Stars experience.

The 2014 schedule for Cruise With The Stars, subject to change is:

Billy Dean with Paul Harris & the Cleverlys – May 23, 2014

Paul Harris & The Cleverlys with Billy Dean – May 23, 2014

Legends in Concert – June 19, 2014

SIX – July 17, 2014

The Texas Tenors – September 18, 2014

John and Ambrus Presley of Presleys’ Country Jubilee – October 7, 2014

This special and unique Branson experience is made available exclusively to Branson Tourism Center customers because of the special relationship it has with Main Street Lake Cruises, the participating entertainers and their theaters. “There is a limited number of seats available for each cruise,” said Tammy Johnson, the Director of Operations for the Branson Tourism Center, who recommends making reservations for the cruise of your choice as soon as possible. For tickets or information for Cruise With The Stars please feel free to contact the Branson Tourism Center by calling 1-800-875-1550.

Branson artist’s “Hearts of love” paint special Valentine

Tom Crain's "Home of the Brave" with "heart of love" added by author.

I am reminded of British poet Thomas Hood’s beautiful description the meaning of Valentine’s day, “Oh, if it be to choose and call thee mine, love, thou art every day my Valentine!,” every morning, as I turn on the light and see the reproduction of Branson artist Tom Crain’s magnificent painting, “”Home of the Brave” on the wall. In terms of adding reality and meaning to Hood’s loving prose, if the “hearts of love” that Tom puts in his paintings to show his wife Susan, “thou art every day my Valentine” doesn’t do it nothing will.

Tom and Susan Crain have been married since November of 2000, but prior to that, as their budding romance developed, Tom discovered that Susan, because of their symbolic relationship to “the heart of man” loved and collected things with heart shapes in them. As one of the ways of showing Susan how much he loved her, Tom decided to incorporate hearts into his paintings and has been doing so ever since in the vast majority of his works. His first “heart of love” was a heart shaped U.S. Flag on a watch he had.

In June of 2000 he painted his majestic and breathtaking “Home of the Brave,” which is a compilation of his memories of a special fishing trip into the Colorado Rockies with his son, his love and appreciation of the majesty and grandeur of God’s creation, love of country and his love for Susan. It is one of his most popular paintings, toured China and the Orient and is the first of his major paintings incorporating Susan’s “hearts of love.”

The true wonder of the “hearts of love” is the loving and unobtrusive way they are incorporated into his works. In a testament to the artistry and skill of this wonderful artist, although in most cases there is more than one “heart of love” in a painting, Tom’s love for Susan is shared so subtly that one really has to know what they are looking for to find one, let alone the other hearts for his “Susan” that are in the painting.

In the illustration of Tom’s “Home of the Brave,” used with his permission, this writer has loosely outlined the major “heart of love” with a pink heart that is not in the original painting. Notice how subtly the artist has woven the heart into the fabric of the painting starting just to the left of where the waterfall meets the eagles wings and follows ridge lines and shadings to complete its form. There is even a heart within the heart.

Happy Valentine’s Day!


Branson, a special way to end 2013 and begin 2014

Joining the party aboard Main Street Lake Cruises' "Landing Princess" is just one of many ways to celebrate New Year's Eve in Branson.

BRANSON, Mo., December 18, 2013 – “For families as well as individuals it’s hard to beat the variety of exciting ways Branson has to ‘ring out’ the old year and welcome in the New Year,” said Tammy Johnson, the Director of Operations for the Branson Tourism Center. “Branson offers an amazing choice of entertaining and exciting ways for everyone to celebrate the New Year,” she added.

For those wanting a special New Year’s Eve celebration with the traditional Midnight welcoming in of the New Year, many of Branson’s shows and Main Street Lake Cruises are providing a variety of unique and exciting New Year’s Eve celebrations. These include:

Legends in Concert – Show at 9:30 PM featuring the world famous Legends in Concert tribute artists performing their tributes to Brooks and Dunn, Stevie Wonder, Cher, Alan Jackson, The Blues Brothers, and Elvis. Includes a New Year’s Celebration with party favors and various food choices depending on the package selected.

Pierce Arrow – Want a funny and musical New Year’s Eve Celebration with great food? The Pierce Arrow New Year’s Eve Celebration includes a special three hour show starting at 9 PMwith funny man Jarrett Dougherty, Pierce Arrow, Kenya Wilhite, Shonna Bonds and special guest stars. The fun and entertainment includes games, giveaways, wonderful catered food from Vaskens Deli and a live countdown with balloon drop.

The Haygoods – This fun and exciting evening includes Chocolate Fountains, the Haygoods show starting at 9:00 PM with a break between 10:00 and 10:50 PM during which Gourmet Hors d’oeuvres will be served. The Haygoods will resume the stage and perform from 11:00 until the Midnight celebration which includes Pyrotechnics and Laser Show, Party Hats, Horns, and a huge Balloon Drop at Midnight!

New Year’s Eve Cruise on the 100 foo luxury yacht Landing Princess or the riverboat replica Lake Queen – Ring in the New Year by joining us for this 3.5 hour New Year’s Eve Party aboard Main Street Lakes Cruises’ 100 foot luxury yacht, the Landing Princess. Enjoy mouthwatering hors’ d oeuvres, a sinfully delicious dessert bar, complimentary party favors, a live DJ and dance floor, hula-hoop and limbo contests with fantastic prizes, raffle give-a-ways with awesome prizes, complimentary midnight champagne toast, a cash bar with end of year drink specials and a memorable cruise on Lake Taneycomo. Both boats are handicap accessible, climate controlled, and have onboard restroom facilities.

Grand Jubilee – The fun starts with the first half of the Grand Jubilee Show from 9:00 to 10:00 PM. Finger foods, desserts, and nonalcoholic beverages will be served from 10:00 to 11:00 PM after which the 2nd half of the show will be presented leading up to the balloon drop at Midnight with party favors.

Doug Gabriel’s #1 Hits Tribute Show – Join Doug Gabriel and his family for a fun night as they ring in the New Year! The celebration includes the show featuring Doug and his talented cast, drawings, raffle prizes, celebration cake, party favors, a live countdown and a Midnight balloon drop.

Other Branson dinner shows open “New Year’ Eve” for wanting an earlier celebration include:

Dixie Stampede 5:30 PM

Showboat Branson Belle 4:00 and 8:00 PM

Christmas on the Trail 5:15 PM

High flying Hoop acrobatics from the "Acrobats of China," just one of the many shows olpe n New Years Eve.

From a pure show perspective, Branson has shows for the entire family starting at 10:00 AM and continuing into the evening. These include the following listed by time:

Amazing Pets 10:00 AM

Michael J. & Friends 2:00 PM

Todd Oliver & Friends 2:00 PM

Acrobats of China 3:00 PM

Comedy Jamboree 3:00 PM

Acrobats of China 8:00 PM

Comedy Hypnosis  8:00 PM

Gatlin Brothers 8:00 PM

During New Year’s Eve Day and into the evening the following attractions will be open for the whole family to enjoy. Please check the link for hours of operation, prices and ticketing:

Adventure Ziplines of Branson

Butterfly Palace & Rainforest Adventure

Castle of Chaos

Celebrity Car Museum

Hannah’s Maze of Mirrors

Hollywood Wax Museum

IMAX Adventure Films

Inspiration Tower

Ripley’s Believe It or Not Museum

Shoot for the Stars Mini Golf

The Track Family Fun Parks

Titanic Museum Attraction

Trail of Lights

Vigilante Ziprider

World’s Largest Toy Museum

“And that doesn’t include shopping, golf, fishing and a myriad of other activities. It’s hard to imagine a better place than Branson for families to celebrate New Year’s together,” said Branson Tourism Center’s Johnson. She points out that, particularly at this time of the year, schedules and activities could be impacted by weather and offers the services of Branson’s largest and most respected vacation planning service, the Branson Tourism Center, in answering any questions anyone might have or to assist with tickets or lodging arrangements for New Years. BTC can be reached by calling their toll free number 1-800-785-1550.

A special birthday gift for Jesus

Some of the kids and their escorts just prior to embarking on their "Candy Cane Cruise."

BRANSON, Mo., December 8, 2013 – About 50 children and their escourts from “Jesus Was Homeless” enjoyed an exclusive private “Candy Cane Cruise” aboard the luxurious 100 foot luxury yacht “Landing Princess” on Dec.7. While cruising they enjoyed meeting with Mrs. Claus and her elves as she read them a story, singing carols, having cookies and milk, writing a letter to Santa Claus and other activities. Ashley Lauer, the Community Relations Manager for “Jesus Was Homeless” said that the children were so excited and have been looking forward to the cruise for weeks.

But the cruise was just the beginning. When it was over the children were surprised when they were taken to a party room with a beautifully decorated Christmas tree surrounded by a huge pile of wrapped Christmas gifts, each with a name on it. After enjoying a Christmas lunch and a craft time, each child received the Christmas gift with their name on it. Prior to Thanksgiving each child was asked what they wanted for Christmas and the gift with their name on it, as much as practicable, contained that gift. In addition, each child got to pick a scarf, hand knitted by two people specifically for the occasion, for their mother that was gift wrapped for them on the spot.

Christmas tree with each child's "wish list " gift wrapped and waiting,

I could not write this story without sharing two of the many stories about these precious children that that touched my heart. Our cinematographer was approached by one of the smaller children and asked, “Do you believe in Santa Claus?” He replied, “Of course I do, don’t you?” “Well I guess so, but he doesn’t stop by our house too often.” As each child, by name ,got their gift one little girl was heard to say, “Oh please, let there be one for me.” Of course there was thanks to the combined efforts of the employees and owners of the Branson Tourism Center, Main Street Lake Cruises and “Jesus Was Homeless,” who had been working for months to make this a very special Christmas moment for the children.

“Jesus Was Homeless” is a local not for profit ministry started in 2008 with the mission of “serving those who are hungry, homeless and hurting within our community by sharing hope love and compassion…” Lauer said that what she loves most about her job, “Is Serving people.” She points out that its mission is completely different from the wonderful food pantry programs whose primary mission is giving out food to the hungry. We are in the business of building relationships by sharing hope, love, and compassion with people who are hungry, hurting and homeless with the goal of helping them break the cycle of poverty that they find themselves in.

That is accomplished through a variety of programs designed to develop relationships, dignity, value and caring while, as much as possible, not duplicating services provided by other organizations and fostering the building of community. These include serving a hot meal every Tuesday, the delivering of about 850 meals to local motels where the “homeless” are housed each Thursday and providing a hot Sunday breakfast before its “no perfect people are allowed” Gateway Church service for people who don’t “like” church.

The “Jesus Was Homeless” program goes far beyond food however as it attempts to build community and help break the cycle of poverty impacting on its clients lives. Its unique biweekly eight week program, called “Jobs For Life” helps equip students with the necessary skills to apply for and successfully hold a job. A unique aspect of this program is that its graduates are guaranteed a job interview with some of Branson’s biggest employers. In addition, there are workshops and service projects designed to help build relationships, dignity, value and caring by providing it clients an opportunity to give back to their community.

Lauer said, “We are honored to serve our community and are so thankful for the volunteers and financial contributors that makes our ministry possible.” Anyone wanting to volunteer or make a contribution to “Jesus Was Homeless” should contact them either by calling them 417-335-9915 or through their website


Ozark Mountain Christmas – Branson’s unique traditional American Christmas celebration

Silver Dollar City's "City Square" with its five story special effects Christmas Tree and the "Gifts of Christmas Holiday of Lights" parade passing through.

BRANSON, Mo., October 27, 2013 When Tammy Johnson, the Director of Operations for the Branson Tourism Center, was first asked, “What exactly is ‘Ozark Mountain Christmas?” she said, “It’s not just one thing. It is a unique Branson wide celebration of the true spirit of a traditional American Christmas that has been celebrated for over two decades.”

From its live Christmas Shows to drive through Christmas lighting displays with millions of lights, Santa, Fantasy Princess, decorations, all sorts of shopping Branson is aglow with the festive look and feel of the season and everything one would expect from a world class holiday celebration. If that was all however, Ozark Mountain Christmas would be just another politically correct “holiday,” but that’s not all!

Ozark Mountain Christmas is the celebration of the traditional American Christmas filled with the spirit and message of the true meaning of Christmas as it has been traditionally celebrated. Its roots go back to a community celebration dating back 65 years as its 65th Annual Adoration Parade, and Nativity Scene Lighting, dedicated to “Keeping Christ in Christmas,” is held on Sunday December 8 in Historic Downtown Branson.

While appreciating and respecting those who celebrate other holidays associated with that time of the year such as Hanukkah, Kwanzaa and others, Ozark Mountain Christmas, is unique in that it is one of the few open and public community celebrations for those who celebrate the traditional American Christmas and the reason for the season. Each year, between November 1 and December 31 hundreds of thousands come to Branson for this special celebration and to experience Ozark Mountain Christmas and all that it has to offer.

Silver Dollar City’s world class festival, An Old Time Christmas, running from November 2 through December 30, is a major focal point of Ozark Mountain Christmas and is constantly recognized as one of the nation’s top theme park Christmas celebrations. The 1880s-style theme park is transformed into a glowing Christmas spectacular with a twice nightly 100,000 light “Gifts of Christmas Holiday Light Parade; over four million sparkling lights throughout the park; one-of-a-kind handmade gifts made and showcased by Silver Dollar City’s 100 demonstrating craftsmen; foods of the season and special shows including the Broadway style production of an original musical adaptation of “A Dickens’ Christmas Carol,” produced by Silver Dollar City; “The Living Nativity” and a special production of “It’s A Wonderful Life.”

The Shepherd of the Hills Trail of Lights and the Branson Area Festival of Lights are the two major drive through lighting displays. The Shepherd of the Hills Trail of Lights is a two and a half mile journey through hundreds of gorgeous displays, millions of Christmas lights, holiday music, and animated scenes most of which have been integrated into the natural terrain of the Shepherd of the Hills Homestead. It is one of the most unique and memorable drive through lighting experiences anywhere and also includes a trip to the top of Inspiration Tower where guests can ride glass elevators 230 feet up for a ‘Santa’s eye view’ of the lights from one or the highest points in southwest Missouri. The Branson Area Festival of Lights is a one mile trip through more than 175 sparkling lighting displays, many of which are animated. It is conveniently located a few blocks off the heart of the Branson Strip.

One of the many spectacular scenes from Sight and Sounds "Miracle of Christmas."

As would be expected in the place that many call the “Live music show capital of the world” there is a wide selection of Christmas Shows that are only available during Ozark Mountain Christmas. Some such as Miracle of Christmas; Hughes Brothers Christmas Show, Christmas in Hollywood, The Andy Williams Christmas Show starring the Osmonds and the Lennon Sisters; The Toy Shoppe, Tony Orlando’s Great American Christmas and many others are totally Christmas shows. Most of Branson’s regular season shows also have Christmas shows which include a mixture of their regular season show and a major Christmas segment, usually during the second half of the show. Each is unique and special. This includes some of Branson’s most popular shows such as Clay Cooper’s Country Express; Duttons; George Dyer; Hamner and Barber Variety Show; Haygoods; Legends in Concert; Mickey Gilley; Pierce Arrow; Presleys’ Country Jubilee; Rankin Brothers; Shoji Tabuchi; SIX and many more. Click here for a complete list of Branson Shows or call the Branson Tourism Center at 1-800-785-1550 for information about any Branson show.

Many of Branson’s attractions have special activities for Ozark Mountain Christmas. A partial list includes the Titanic Museum‘s with its Fantasy Princess starting Thanksgiving weekend,, Ride the Ducks Land and Lighting Tour With Splash’s Winter Wonderland and White Flight at the Butterfly Palace and Rainforest.

Branson’s shopping is legendary and the Christmas shopping during Ozark Mountain Christmas is no exception. From the shops at Branson Landing on the shores of Lake Taneycomo to handcrafted items by the craftsmen and artists at Silver Dollar City’s Old Time Christmas, three outlet malls and specialty shops for just about every interest, Branson is a Christmas shopper’s paradise.

Branson Tourism Center’s Johnson suggests that Ozark Mountain Christmas is a wonderful way for locals and visitors alike to get into the true Christmas spirit, reminds everyone that it is one of the busiest times of the year in Branson and advises advance reservations for shows and lodging.

For additional information on Ozark Mountain Christmas please feel free to contact the Branson Tourism Center by calling their toll free number, 1-800-785-1550.

Branson hosts America’s biggest “Veterans Day” celebration

Branson's Veterans Memorial Garden is just one of the many ways Veterans are honored in Branson on a daily basis.

BRANSON, Mo., October 17, 2013 – “Inherent to the Branson Spirit of God, Family and Country is patriotism and the honoring of Veterans, active duty Armed Forces personnel and their families,” said Tammy Johnson the Director of Operations for the Branson Tourism Center. “Veterans and active duty Military Armed Forces personnel are honored on a daily basis, but even by Branson standards ‘Branson’s Veterans Homecoming Week’ is special.’”

She points out that it is the nation’s biggest “Veterans Day” celebration running from November 5th through November 11th each year and features a variety of events and activities honoring Veterans and their service. These events encompass everything from reunions, special shows such as Tony Orlando’s “Yellow Ribbon Salute to Veterans,” to one of the longest running Veterans Day Parades in America as the “80th Annual Veterans Day Parade” taking place in Historic Downtown Branson at the 11th Hour of the 11th day of the 11th month.

The following list of scheduled events, although subject to change, is current as of October 16, 2013, does not include a myriad of specials and other things that local businesses, shows and attractions are doing, and are sorted by date and time:

November 5

1400 – 1630 Official Opening Ceremony and Welcome to Branson’s Veterans Homecoming Week at Clay Cooper Theatre

0900 – 1530 Registration & Souvenir Commemorative Collectors Button Sales at Branson Mill Craft Village

0900 – 1530 “Remembering Our Fallen” The photo display, which includes photos of each Armed Forces Missourian who has fallen in the war against terrorism.

2000 “Special Salute to Veterans,” Showboat Branson Belle

November 6

1230 – 1430 Veterans Spouses Luncheon, Radisson Hotel, RSVP required call 417-230-1178

1400 Special Showing of “Four-star Country Boy,” Keeter Center Royal Oak Forum, College of the Ozarks, 417-690-2212. A play based on the life of former Assistant Commandant of the United States Marine Corps General Terrence R. Dake as conveyed by the book “The Four Generals of Hard Work U,” by Jerry C. Davis.

1500 – 1700 “Vietnam Veterans Thank You, Reception” with light Hors d’oeuvres, The Keeter Center, College of the Ozarks, 417-690-2212

November 7

0820 – 1130 Persian Gulf War Veterans Mini Reunion hosted by VVA Chapter 913, Branson, MO at the Golden Corral, 417-230-2278.

1200 – 1700 Vietnam Veterans Mini Reunion, Camden Hotel & Conference Center, 417-230-2278

November 8

0800 2nd Annual Navy Memorial Service, Main Street Lake Cruises Branson Landing, 877-382-6287. Brief welcome at the dock or inside in case if inclement weather, followed by a short cruise and wreath ceremony honoring those departed members of the U. S. Naval Services for their service. After the boat returns to the dock there will be refreshments and fellowship.

0900 Wal-Mart Tribute to Veterans, Wal-Mart Supercenter in Branson Hills, 417-230-2278

1130 – 1330 Gold Star and Blue Star Mothers Luncheon, Landry’s Seafood Restaurant, Fran Davis 417-272-0630

1200 – 1500 Korea War Veterans Mini Reunion, Stone Castle Inn – 3050 Green Mountain Dr. 417-230-2278

1400 Tree Dedication at Veterans Grove, Alumni Center Lawn, College of the Ozarks, 417-690-2212

1500 – 1700 WWII Mini-Reunion, The Keeter Center, College of the Ozarks, 417-690-2212

1400 – 1900 4th ID Hospitality Room, Savannah House, 165 Expressway, 902-684-0147

1500 – 1930 Women Veterans Mini Reunion , Golden Corral with social hour, meal and show. Must RSVP 417-230-2278.

November 9

1200 – 1500 Korea War Veterans Mini Reunion, Stone Castle Inn – 3050 Green Mountain Dr. 417-230-2278

1900 U.S. Submarine Veterans Base Candlelight Ceremony, 918-786-8851 hosted by members of the Topeka-Jefferson City U.S. Submarine Veterans Base.

November 11

0700 Flag Raising/Wreath Laying Ceremony, Main Campus Flag Pole, Chapel Lawn, College of the Ozarks, 417-690-2212

1100 80th Annual Veterans Day Parade, Historic Downtown Branson

1400 Tony Orlando’s “Yellow Ribbon Salute to Veterans”, Welk Theatre, 417-337-7469 This will be Tony’s 20th and final year of presenting this annual free show to Veterans in Branson. Reservations may be made by calling 417-337-7469.

1900 Patriotic Convocation Jones Auditorium in the Nettie Marie Jones Learning Center, College of the Ozarks, 417-690-2212.

For additional information on “Branson’s Veterans Homecoming Week,” any of Branson’s shows, attractions or for lodging arrangements please feel free to  call the Branson Tourism Center at 1-800-785-1550 or through their website

Heavenly match of fun, music and food at Silver Dollar City’s Southern Gospel Picnic

Great Southern Gospel music and fun at Silver Dollar City's Southern Gospel Picnic

BRANSON, Mo., August 12, 2013 — “Running for only 11 days, from August 23 – September 2, Silver Dollar City‘s Southern Gospel Picnic has one of the shortest running times of any of Silver Dollars City’s world class festivals,” said Tammy Johnson, the Director of Operations for the Branson Tourism Center. “It’s almost ‘Heavenly,’ the way they integrate and combine all the rides, excitement and adventure of a world class theme park with over 60 of the finest Southern Gospel music acts available anywhere and a ‘picnic’ Silver Dollar City style.”

Information received from Silver Dollar City about the event said there will be over 60 acts performing Southern Gospel music throughout the park during the festival. The Festival’s coordinator D.A. Callaway said that they will feature everything from “…legendary performers and Dove award winners to contemporary artists and family bands,” offering “impeccable harmonies and uplifting songs” that will be appreciated by fans of Southern Gospel Music while offering those “new to the genre” an excellent opportunity to sample different types of Southern Gospel Music presented by some of the top artists in the field.

Guy Penrod the host of the show “Gospel Music Showcase” on the Daystar network and one of Southern Gospel’s premier performers will be performing at the Festival. In addition to his album “Hymns” being the top selling Southern Gospel album of 2012 Penrod’s credits include more than a decade of performing with the Gaither Vocal Band, singing backup for Kenny Chesney and Shania Twain as well as being nominated as the Inspirational Country Music Awards Entertainer of the Year.

And that’s just one of the acts that will perform hundreds of performances during the Festival. Other acts include Karen Peck & New River, 2012 Dove Award Country Song of the Year & Southern Gospel Album of the Year; Triumphant Quartet, Four 2012 Singing News Fan Awards including Favorite Traditional Quartet, Favorite Musician & Album of the Year; The Hoppers, 2012 Singing News Fan Awards Favorite Soprano – Kim Hopper and dozens of others. Click here for a complete schedule.

The daily performances will be followed each night by the “Southern Gospel Nights” concert which will be held in Echo-Hollow, Silver Dollar City’s 4,000 seat amphitheater and will be hosted by gospel emcee Duane Garren. On Sunday August 25 and September 1 there will be a special worship service featuring the Hosea Bilyeu Family on August 25 and noted humorist and evangelist Dennis Swanberg on September 1.

“Well that takes care of the ‘Southern Gospel’; the The House of Chicken & Fixin’s on the Square is going to add the ‘Picnic,’” said Branson Tourism Center’s Johnson. In addition to all the delicious food normally available throughout the park The House of Chicken & Fixin’s will be offering the park’s guests mouthwatering double-battered fried chicken, smoked barbecue chicken and more with their favorite “picnic fixings.”

In addition to all the special activities and events involved in the Festival, all the excitement and adventure that the international award winning 1880s theme park is noted for is also available. This includes 100 resident craftsmen and over 30 rides and attractions including Silver Dollar City’s new ground-breaking wood coaster Outlaw Run featuring “the world’s first and only double barrel roll on a wood coaster, with a 720-degree (double) barrel roll.

For further information on Silver Dollar City, its Southern Gospel Picnic or any of Branson’s other shows and attractions or for lodging arrangements please contact the Branson Tourism Center by either calling their toll free number 1-800-785-1550 or through their website


Clay Cooper delights passengers on first 2013 Branson Cruise With The Stars

Clay Cooper "at the helm" of the Landing Princess .

BRANSON, MO, July 27, 2013 — “Just look at the way he relates to the passengers and the great time they are having with him,” said Annette Wood, Director of Group Sales for the Branson Tourism Center, one of the facilitators for Branson Tourism Center’s exclusive “Cruise With The Stars” event. She was referring to Branson star Clay Cooper, of the Clay Cooper’s Country Music Express show, as he interacted and shared with them on an individual basis during the Clay Cooper Cruise With The Stars event on July 26.

All of the passengers were part of an event combining two elements, seeing the Clay Cooper Country Music Express show and an exclusive VIP luncheon cruise with Cooper aboard Main Street Cruise Lines‘ 100 foot luxury yacht, Landing Princess. The VIP luncheon cruise with Cooper was available only as part of the Cruise With The Stars entertainment experience offered exclusively to Branson Tourism Center customers because of the special relationship it has with Clay Cooper’s County Music Express and Main Street Lake Cruises.

As each passenger boarded the Landing Princess they were greeted by Cooper who posed for pictures with them. After the cruise got underway, everyone had a chance to see Branson Landings spectacular “$7.5 million “Fountain Show” featuring the merging of music, fire, water, and light into an amazing and dazzling display of water fountains shooting 120-foot geysers and flame bursting from fire cannons all choreographed to light and music. They enjoyed a wonderful lunch as they cruised beautiful Lake Taneycomo. Fortunately, even though it was raining, the fog had lifted except for lingering wafts which added an additional element of surreal beauty to the scenery as the boat glided by.

As they ate and cruised Clay personally visited with each group and table. It was an honor watching him interact with the guests aboard the boat. When one sees his show they cannot help but be impressed with how he almost instantly established a rapport and relationship with his audience. It’s not something that is learned. One either has it or not and he has the gift. From the looks on the passengers faces and their comments it was obvious that the passengers felt that they had a special experience and one they would not soon forget.

Many asked for the schedule of future cruises because they wanted to plan to participate. Subject to change, the following Branson stars will be participating in Cruise With The Stars on the dates indicated:

Mickey Gilley – September 19th, 2013

The Haygoods – October 4th, 2013

Yakov Smirnoff – October 14th, 2013

Tony Orlando – November 7th, 2013

Legends in Concert – December 5th, 2013

As was the case with the Clay Cooper Cruise With The Stars, along with a unique view of beautiful Lake Taneycomo, Branson Landing and spectacular Ozark vistas each VIP cruise will include lunch and an unparalleled chance to interact with the star(s) on the cruise. This includes opportunities for photos, autographs and a unique up close and personal experience that is available only to those who have taken advantage of the exclusive offer and purchased Cruise With The Stars tickets.

Branson Tourism Center’s Wood advises that there are only a limited number of seats for each Cruise With The Stars and recommends making advance reservation as soon as possible. For tickets or information on the exclusive Cruise With The Stars event please contact the Branson Tourism Center by calling 1-800-875-1550.

Ozark Mountain Christmas planning in July?

The center of Silver Dollar City's "Old Time Christmas." It's town square and five story special effects Christmas Tree.

BRANSON, MO, July 13, 2013 — “It might seem strange talking about Ozark Mountain Christmas, running from November 1 through December 31 each year, as we swelter in the heat in the middle of July ” said Tammy Johnson, Director of Operations for the Branson Tourism Center. “In addition to the cooling effects that such thoughts might have on ones psyche however, it should be noted that Ozark Mountain Christmas, is the most colorful, exciting, inspirational and busiest time of the year in the Branson,” she added. “To get the ‘hottest’ deals and best availability on a trip to Branson for Ozark Mountain Christmas, planning in July might just be the ‘cool’ thing to do.”

Johnson explains that Ozark Mountain Christmas, is a unique and special Branson Christmas experience that is not available anywhere else on earth. From the Silver Dollar City’s “Old Time Christmas” to the West to the large Adoration Scene on top of Mount Branson to the East, Ozark Mountain Christmas, sets Branson aglow with Christmas lights, shows, shopping and, most important of all, the true spirit of Christmas that “resonates in the hearts of those wanting to celebrate and experience the traditional celebration of Christmas.”

Over a million sparkling Christmas lights transform Silver Dollar City into a Christmas wonderland as it celebrates its “Old Time Christmas,” as only it can do with special shows and activities in addition to everything else it offers.  The Shepherd of the Hills’ Trail of Lights and the “Branson Area Festival of Lights” both provide spectacular drive through lighting displays with millions of glowing Christmas lights and numerous beautiful displays. And the glow of Christmas lights doesn’t stop there as Christmas decorations and lights adorn utility poles, the Branson Landing Roundabout, the Titanic Museum Attraction as the ship celebrates Christmas with the Fantasy Princess, Branson Landing and many of Branson’s shops and theatres.

And speaking of theatres, the vast majority of Branson’s shows share the spirit of Christmas by devoting a portion of their shows to the celebration of the traditional Christmas. In addition, there are a number of shows that are only available during Ozark Mountain Christmas, such as the Andy Williams Christmas Show staring Osmond Brothers and Lennon Sisters, Sight and Sounds spectacular production of the Miracle of Christmas presented on a 300 foot surround stage, Christmas in Hollywood, Tony Orlando staring in the final Branson season of his Great American Christmas show and others.

“Its large variety of unique boutiques, specialty shops, galleries and craft shops, Branson Landing and discount malls like the “Tanger Factory Outlet Center” and “The Shoppes at Branson Meadows” provide a great shopping experience in Branson year round,” Branson Tourism Center’s Johnson continued. “Mix in a little Ozark Mountain Christmas, and it’s not hard to see why many do their Christmas shopping in Branson.”

She points out that during Branson’s regular season there are periods when shows and lodging fill up, but that during Ozark Mountain Christmas, particularly with the more popular shows and lodging establishments, the situation increases exponentially. Johnson explains that not only do the chances of nonavailability increase, but the chances of getting the best show seats, choice of accommodations, and the best prices decrease the longer one waits to make their Ozark Mountain Christmas, travel plans. She reiterates, “To get the ‘hottest’ deals and best availability on a trip to Branson for Ozark Mountain Christmas, planning in July might just be the ‘cool’ thing to do.”

For additional information on Ozark Mountain Christmas, or tickets for any of Branson’s shows and attractions or for lodging arrangements please feel free to 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 .