Category Archives: Bull Shoals Lake

Bluegrass and BBQ Festival adds to Silver Dollar City fun and entertainment

There will be Bluegrass and BBQ aplenty at Silver Dollar City's Bluegrass and BBQ Festival.

BRANSON, Mo., May 14, 2012 — The sounds of people laughing and having fun at Silver Dollar City in Branson will be mingled with the sounds of Bluegrass music and the aroma of BBQ throughout the park as SDC celebrates its Bluegrass & BBQ Festival through June 3. “It’s the best of all worlds,” said Tammy Johnson, the Director of Operations for the Branson Tourism Center, Branson’s largest and most respected vacation planning service, ” all the rides and excitement of a world class theme park; lots of Bluegrass music performed by some of the finest Bluegrass artists in the country and a cornucopia of just about every style of BBQ there is accompanied by over 100 different sauces..”

Recognized by the “International Bluegrass Music Association,” the festival will feature two national Bluegrass competitions,” The National Single Mic Championship” May 19 – 20, “The Youth In Bluegrass Band Contest” May 26 – 27, and dozens of some of the finest Bluegrass performers in the Nation. These include some of “Bluegrass music’s top artists and award-winning performers such as  the “Bluegrass Brigade,” “Gibson Brothers, “Grascals,” “Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver,” the “Kruger Brothers” and many others.”

The “BBQ” part of the festival includes the cooking and serving of over 40,000 pounds of mouth watering BBQ prepared on “large outdoor charcoal grills and a custom-made 9-foot smoker.” From “Memphis dry rubs” to “Carolina vinegars,” “smoky Texas,” “KC-style” and others, there will be a style of BBQ for the most discriminating BBQ connoisseur, plus a hundred different sauces to sample. The variety and flavor of the BBQ will be expanded this year with the addition of two award winning BBQs, ” Hawgwild BBQ” out of Aurora, Missouri and “Dickey’s Barbecue Pit” from Texas.

In addition to the excellent food service normally available throughout the park, “The House of BBQ” will be serving up BBQ galore. From Silver Dollar City’s famous flavor feast with “St. Louis ribs and smoked chicken to Texas brisket and sweet roasted corn on the cob” to the all you-can-eat BBQ rib feast each afternoon” and lots in between, it is hard to imagine a wider choice of BBQ styles flavors and sauces available in one place.

As is the case with all of Silver Dollar City’s world class festivals, all of the activities involved with the festival are in addition to everything else the 1880’s styled theme park offers on a daily basis. The park features 30 rides and attractions from “Wildfire,” a world class multi-looping roller coaster that reaches speeds up to 66 miles per hour to the $1 million “Half Dollar Holler” designed for kids through age 7; unique shopping; some of the best live shows and entertainment available in Branson and dozens of demonstrating craftsmen all integrated into the natural wonder and beauty of the surrounding Ozark Hills. Branson Tourism Center’s Johnson also reminds prospective Silver Dollar City visitors that when they purchase their Silver Dollar City Tickets through Branson Tourism Center they get two full days for the price of one.

For additional information or tickets for Silver Dollar City, any of its festivals 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

Branson’s Tri-Lakes add to the uniqueness that is Branson

Table Rock Lake's Still Waters Lakeside Resort on Indian Point.

The Branson area is oft times referred to as the “Tri-Lakes” area because of its three lakes Table Rock Lake, Lake Taneycomo and Bull Shoals Lake. Together they provide fishermen, boaters and water sports enthusiasts with a year round selection of activities of every type from swimming, scuba diving and fishing to boating, wakeboarding, water skiing, parasailing and just about any other water sport or fun type of activity.

Of the three lakes, the two most often used by Branson visitors would be Table Rock Lake with its 741 miles of shore line and the 22 mile long Lake Taneycomo. Both are situated within less than 10 minutes of the famed Branson Strip, with all its fabulous live shows, attractions, thousands of hotel and motel rooms of every type, shopping and everything else that makes Branson the popular vacation destination that it is.

The 43,100 surface acre Table Rock Lake is the “crown jewel” of Branson’s water related recreational activities. Its warm waters provide the source for the majority of the water related sports activities in the Tri-Lakes and some of the finest bass fishing in the United States. Convenient public access to Table Rock Lake, from Branson, is available through the State Park Marina located just south of Table Rock Dam on State Highway 165 and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers boat ramps located at Moon Shine Beach, immediately north of the Table Rock Dam on Highway 165 and Indian Point Park located 8 miles west of Branson on State Highway 76, and about two miles south on Indian Point Road.

Tammy Johnson, the Director of Operations for the Branson Tourism Center, points out that there are a variety of campgrounds and other lodging facilities located right on the shores and within minutes of the lake. “Two properties that immediately come to mind,” she said. “is the iconic Chateau on the Lake standing high above the lake near the dam and the Still Waters Lakeside Resort located right on the lake on  Indian Point.” She also points out that one of the most popular camping areas on Table Rock Lake is the “State Park Campground” located along with the State Park Marina just south of Table Rock Dam on State Highway 165.

Lake Taneycomo is a long narrow lake that runs from the foot of Table Rock Dam to the Power Site Dam, and the headwaters of Bull Shoals Lake, 22 mile downstream. It is a cold water lake due to the temperature of the water being discharged into the lake through power generation at the Table Rock Dam. In terms of the number of fish caught, Lake Taneycomo is one of the finest Rainbow and Brown Trout fisheries in the country.

Its cold water is not conducive to the same type of water activities as are the warm waters of Table Rock Lake. Although there is some excellent bass fishing available toward its lower end and in its creeks, Lake Taneycomo’s primary water activity is boating and trout fishing.

Lake Taneycomo has a number of lakeside resorts such as Trout Hollow and Lilley’s Landing and the city of Branson operates a lakeside campground with full facilities just south of Branson Landing on Box Car Willie Drive. Convenient access to the lake is provided at the Shepherd of the Hills Fish Hatchery, the Cooper Creek Launch Area and the south end of the city of Branson’s campground. Scotty’s Trout Dock, located near the public launch area in the city campground is a great source of information, boat rentals, bait, and guide services.

Bull Shoals Lake, a 45, 000 thousand acre impoundment, with over 1050 miles of shoreline, offers the same type of boating and fishing as does Table Rock Lake. Except for fishermen and probably because of the closeness of Table Rock Lake to Branson, Bull Shoals Lake does not play a major role in the water activities of most Branson visitors even though it is but 20 minutes away.

Branson’s “Tri-Lakes” not only provide a variety of water sports and activities, but in offering it so close to everything else that Branson offers they provide an element of uniqueness that helps make Branson such a special place.

Branson’s “hot” attractions provide cool relief from summer heat

Silver Dollar City's new $7 million dollar RiverBlast literally provides a watery blast of relief from the summer heat.

Even in the midst of the summer’s heat, Branson’s “hot” shows, attractions, activities and the excitement and adventure they offer makes it one of the ‘coolest’ vacation and entertainment destinations in America,” said Tammy Johnson, Director of Operations for the Branson Tourism Center, one of Branson’s largest and most respected vacation planning services. “Branson’s attractions and activities provide a variety of ‘cool’ fun filled ways to get relief from the heat.”

Silver Dollar City, an international award winning 1880s themed park and Branson’s most popular paid attractions has many ways to cool off. The “American Plunge” is an exciting traditional log flume ride providing a thrilling five story plunge at speeds up to 35 miles an hour into a splashdown that guarantees a refreshing soaking. Other rides that provide a similar soaking would be the “Lost River of the Ozarks” or Silver Dollar City’s newest water ride, the $7 million “RiverBlast” which provides a leisure float into what might be the biggest “water fight” on the planet. Another interesting way to get cool at Silver Dollar City is to take the Marvel Cave Tour.

The Branson area is blessed with three fresh water lakes, Table Rock Lake, Bull Shoals Lake, and Lake Taneycomo. Many people are aware of the great fishing, boating and other recreational activities available on the 43,100 plus acres of pristine waters of Table Rock Lake. One feature a lot of Branson’s visitors might not be aware of however, is Moonshine Beach located just north of Table Rock Dam on State Highways 165/265 within minutes of the Branson Strip. Moonshine Beach is operated by the U.S. Corps of Engineers and, in addition to its large sand swimming beach has a play ground, picnic areas, a boat launch ramp, flush toilets and showers. It is open from 9:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. and there is a daily charge of $4.00 per vehicle.

White Water, southwest Missouri’s largest water park, is located on 12 acres right on the famed Branson Strip. It has two million gallons and of cool liquid excitement, more than 7,000 feet of water slides and a dozen rides to help provide a fun filled way to find relief from the summer’s heat. One of its major rides is “Kalani Towers”, a seven story tall six slide ride. Two of the slides have 300 foot drops enabling speeds of up to 40 mph and four have 312 foot slides located immediately adjacent to each other that permit lane racing at speeds up to 25 mph. Other cooling rides are the Raging River Rapids a two slide ride wrapping around a huge five story high waterfall as riders race to the pool below; the Bermuda Triangle, a fast paced enclosed slide; the Caribbean Plunge and Tropical Twister rapid-water raft rides; Surfquake, a 500,000 gallon wave pool producing 4-foot waves and the Lazy River, a gently moving river for just floating and relaxing.

The majority of Branson’s shows and indoor attractions are air conditioned but iceberg located near the entrance to the Titanic Museum is an indication of some special “cool things.” Does it get much cooler than touching an iceberg? In addition, as guests near the end of their exciting adventure aboard the Titanic, after it has hit the iceberg, they will encounter a chilling experience followed by a real “cool “hands on experience in the interactive area near the lifeboats.

For additional information on these and other really cool Branson shows, attractions, and activities or for lodging arrangements please call the Branson Tourism Center at 1-800-875-1550 or visit

Water safety is important part of Branson vacation

Table Rock Lake Dam plays an important part for two of Branson's Lakes, the 43,000 acre Table Rock Lake, behind the dam and Lake Taneycomo flowing 22 miles down stream from the foot of the dam.

In a recent article entitled “Why spend Memorial Day Weekend anywhere else but in Branson?,” Paul Miller, General Manager of the Branson Tourism Center, one of Branson’s largest and most respected vacation planning services, said, “Every weekend in Branson is special, but there’s just something about Memorial Day Weekend in Branson. Perhaps it’s because that’s the long weekend many people associate with the ‘unofficial’ beginning of summer, but one thing is for certain, there is a synergy in the air in Branson that just seems to shout, ‘Let the summer fun begin.’”

“For many families, a part of that summer fun will involve swimming, boating, fishing or other activities on one of the three beautiful lakes, Table Rock Lake, Lake Taneycomo and Bull Shoals Lake , that help make Branson the unique, one of a kind fun filled travel destination it is,” Miller continues. He points out that even with the recent rains, Table Rock Lake is at ideal levels for every type of water activity from boating to swimming and everything in between. This includes “Moonshine Beach,” the public beach operated by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, located off the north end of Table Rock Dam. It has full facilities, a sandy beach and a beautiful view of Table Rock Lake while being only five minutes drive from the famed “Branson Strip.”

Moonshine Beach is a popular public beach operated the Corps of Engineers.

“Safety, is an inherent part of water activities and helps ensure that an outing on the water becomes a memorable activity of the best kind,” Miller said. “A recent U.S. Army Corps of Engineers press release reminds us of some safety tips that can ensure that happening.”

It points out that at certain times, such as major Holiday Weekends like Memorial Day Weekend, “parks, lakes and rivers will be congested” and reminds “visitors to be courteous while waiting at boat ramps, sharing beaches or traveling waterways” and to “obey signs and barricades that restrict access to any areas that are closed off.”

In addition it contained specific water safety tips in two general areas “Swimming” and “Boating:”


Learn to swim.
Watch your children at all times, and put a life jacket on them.
Never dive into lakes or rivers.
Never rely on inner tubes, water wings or other toys to stay afloat.
Don’t over-estimate your swimming skills.
Reach or throw a flotation device to help someone in trouble.  Don’t go in the water!
Swim only in designated areas.
Never swim alone.


Don’t drink alcoholic beverages while boating.
Wear a life jacket.  It’s the law for children 12 and younger and a great idea for adults.
Know your boat and know the rules of the water.
Check your boat for all required safety equipment.
Don’t overload the boat.
Check the weather forecast and flow conditions if boating on a river [Lake Taneycomo]…”

Miller says, “Our areas lakes and waterways, when used safely, are an inherent part of many people’s Branson experience and memories along with its shows, attractions, shopping and other exciting fun activities.” For additional information or tickets for lake attractions such as the Showboat Branson Belle’s dinner show cruise on Table Rock Lake, any of Branson’s other shows, attractions and activities or for lodging arrangements please contact the Branson Tourism Center. They can be reached by either calling their toll free number 1-800-785-1550 or through their website