If you’re trying to make the most of your money while in Branson, you’re probably looking for things to that are free or extremely affordable.  Keep these five budget activities in Branson in mind to make the most of your trip in the Ozarks.


College of the Ozarks Chapel

College of the Ozarks/Facebook

1) Visit College of the Ozarks
College of the Ozarks, one of the top colleges in the nation, has a beautiful campus worth exploring. Visit the Ralph Foster Museum, focused on the history and heritage of the Ozarks (Adults/$6, Students Free); the Edwards Mill, a working grist mill (free); Williams Memorial Chapel, an outstanding example of neo-Gothic architecture; Point Lookout, a scenic overlook; the Dairy Farm, where you can see an operating dairy farm and even taste fresh milk; plus much more. Be sure to stop by the Keeter Center for delicious lunch.


Fishing on Lake Taneycomo

2) Shepherd of the Hills Fish Hatchery
Kids rather enjoy the Shepherd of the Hills Fish Hatchery, and parents can’t beat the price as it’s totally free. Both self-guided and scheduled tours are available. You can hand feed fish, learn about the trout production process which are found in nearby Lake Taneycomo, as well as hike four trails ideal for sightseeing. In addition, you can bring a rod and reel and cast your line in nearby Lake Taneycomo for a leisurely afternoon. As far as activities in Branson go, this one appeals to those that love the outdoors!


Stone Hill Winery

3) Stone Hill Winery
Stop by the award-winning Stone Hill Winery, located centrally in Branson, for a free wine tour. It includes an inside look at the step-by-step wine making and bottling process. At the end of the tour, you’ll find yourself in a tasting room where you can taste all of Stone Hill’s delicious wines. Don’t worry—there’s juices for the kids. Pick up a bottle of your favorite for a unique souvenir from Branson, MO. I highly recommend the Moscato.

Moonshine Beach

Moonshine Beach

4) Spend the Day at the Beach
One of the best budget-friendly activities in Branson is also one of the most fun! On the shores of Table Rock Lake sits Moonshine Beach, a man made sand beach perfect for swimming. For only $4 per car, the whole family can enjoy sunshine and the beauty of this local-approved lake spot. The lake is framed by the rolling hills of the Ozarks, which makes it picture-perfect. Pack a lunch and make a day of it! Just be sure to bring sunscreen, towels and plenty of water.

Branson Landing Fountains FB1

Branson Landing/Facebook

5) Branson Landing Fountain Show
Since opening in 2006, the Branson Landing quickly became a hotspot for both visitors and locals alike. There are several low cost activities at the complex, like Parakeet Pete’s Waterfront Balloon, as well as street performers. Best of all, though, is the $7.5 million water, light and fire show set to choice music you’ll love. The water and fire spectacle is a creation of internationally renowned Wet Design, the producers of world-class shows for Disney Springs in Orlando, Universal City Walk in California and the Bellagio in Las Vegas.

Ashley is Reserve Direct’s travel expert, visiting Branson to find the best travel tips, money-saving deals and insider information. With over 10 years of experience in first-hand-travel adventures, she shares her stories, advice, and current events to help you stay in the know.

Immersive. Engaging. Inspirational. Sight and Sound Theatres is known for its stunning stage productions and the all-new Moses is making a spectacular spring debut, winning over early audiences and earning race reviews. Many are familiar with the biblical epic, but why will you love Moses in Branson? Read on to find out.

Moses in Branson

Serious Wow Factor

Miracles are central to the story of Moses. How can one forget the parting of the Red Sea, the burning bush, the plagues? Recreating these scenes on stage is a major task; luckily, Sight and Sound Theatres are experts on advance technology. Phenomenal set design, moving set pieces, elaborate multi-media projections and a 180 degree wrap around stage bring the Old Testament times to life. You’ll say “Wow” over and over as the ten plagues of Egypt reign, from the Nile turning to blood to the storm of fire and hail, God talks to Moses at the burning bush, the Red Sea divides and Moses staff transforms into a snake.

Moses in Branson

A Powerful Message

Sight and Sound Theatres are proud to deliver faith-based shows to audiences both in Branson, MO and Lancaster, PA. Moses continues that tradition, but think twice about the show being over-the-top preachy. It appeals those who are open to the idea of Christianity to those who know the Bible by heart. Accurate in tone, the show draws heavily from Exodus and Hebrews but if haven’t read them or haven’t seen the Hollywood movie “The Ten Commandments,” you’ll still easily be able to follow along.

Moses in Branson

Original Music to Move You

You might not know it, but Moses in Branson is a musical. The original composition is by a veteran composer of film and television, and people sing. A lot. In my opinion, it gives the show an extra emotional punch with heart-wrenching moments made that much more so by a falsetto in a voice or a villainous character, like the Pharaoh, sounding more powerful than ever through a booming solo. Bonus: If you really love the music of Moses, a soundtrack is available in the lobby.

Moses in Branson

The Petting Zoo Factor

Along with a talented cast of almost 50, there are some non-human counterparts stealing the spotlight. Cattle, goats, dogs, sheep, parrots, camels, horses and more parade on stage and sometime even down the aisles as characters make their entrance. Kids love the zoo-esque scene; reserve an aisle seat to get a closer look.

The themes of freedom, belonging, and the struggle for faith are universally appealing. Attend Moses in Branson to see why this is a show all ages love.

Moses tickets are on sale now. The show has matinee and evening productions, March 5-December 31, 2016.

Ashley is Reserve Direct’s travel expert, visiting Branson to find the best travel tips, money-saving deals and insider information. With over 10 years of experience in first-hand-travel adventures, she shares her stories, advice, and current events to help you stay in the know.

Planning a vacation to Branson, Missouri in 2017? If so, you’re probably curious about what’s new in Branson. As always, there’s a lot happening in this Ozark Mountain town. From debut shows to exciting new attractions and festivals, these experiences are guaranteed to make your vacation in Branson even better!


The Runaway at Branson Mountain Adventure Park/ Facebook

New in Branson: Attractions

The Runaway Mountain Coaster

The action continues at Runaway Mountain Coaster. This attraction merges Branson’s own hilly landscape to create a user-controlled coaster experience that’s totally one-of-a-kind. How does the ride work exactly? It starts by a cart being pulled to the top of a mountain (similar to a roller coaster). Then, once there, the carts are released, sending riders on a zooming, winding spin through the Ozark hills! As far as attractions that are new in Branson, this one is sure to be a favorite!

Big Foot on the Strip

Attention thrill seekers! Big Foot on the Strip is for you. This massive tower features three activities:

A 200-foot freefall tower: Passengers are strapped into seats outside the tower and travel up its side to the top; there they’ll have a breathtaking view of the Branson Strip and the surrounding scenic wonder of the Ozarks before being released for a thrilling “free fall” back down the side of the tower.

Saddle Swing ride: Passengers are launched from the ground into the air, accelerating upward until they reach a max vertical height of about 150 feet; where they begin an exciting descent back to earth.

360 ° observation ride: Riders are seated in an enclosed gondola that gently rotates and rises to the top of the tower. At the top, it slowly rotates giving passengers that amazing view mentioned above, one that’s both unique and constantly changing, before being slowly lowered back to its starting point.

At the concourse for the attraction guests will find Branson’s only collection of food trucks. This means after your epic sightseeing adventure, you can fill up on food that is local-approved and made on-the-spot.


Fritz’s Adventure/Facebook

Fritz’s Adventure

Fritz’s Adventure officially opened in late 2016. However, it’s worth mention here as it is an attraction that’s relatively new in Branson. Plus, it’s SO. MUCH. FUN. It doesn’t matter if you’re a kid or a big kid (some might say adult), this place will keep you busy for hours. The dynamic attraction takes the challenges of outdoor adventures and moves them inside for a multi-dimensional experience. In total, there are three stories and over 80,000 square feet of space featuring everything from zip lines to rope courses to tunnels and climbing walls.

7D Dark Ride Adventure, Arcade City, and Mirror Maze

All three of these attractions will call the Branson Landing home, making your time at the entertainment complex that much more fun! The 7D Dark Ride Adventure is an interactive shooting adventure, while Arcade City mixes old school games with modern marvels and the mirror maze will have you seeing double.


Titanic Museum Branson/Facebook

Titanic Museum Attraction – 20 Year Movie Anniversary

In honor of the 20th anniversary of James Cameron’s Titanic, the Titanic Museum Attraction in Branson is hosting a special gallery March 12-June 13. Never-before-seen elements from the movie like costumes, set pieces, props, signed scripts, and more will be on display.

History of Fishing Museum

The History of Fishing Museum is the largest collection of antique fishing lures, rods, reels, boats and motors entirely collected by one man and his wife, Karl and Beverly White. In total, there are more than 40,000 pieces valued at nearly $5 million.

Johnny Morris’ New Golf Course

Morris, the owner of Big Cedar Lodge and Bass Pro, continues his mission to make Branson a renowned golf retreat with the addition of a world-class short course. He is working with golf icon Gary Player on a course that winds through the Ozark landscape, creating an extremely unique, and challenging, golf course. The course, which is yet to be named, should be open by late spring.

Showboat Branson Belle

New in Branson: Shows

Showboat Branson Belle – Country on the Lake

Starting in May, the Showboat Branson Belle will feature an all-new show: Country on the Lake. A live band and seriously talented singers will take guests on a journey through yesterday’s classic rock hits to country favorites of today. Country on the Lake will perform during the noon cruise only.

Dreams – A Classic Rock Fantasy

This show features classic rock favorites from Stevie Nicks, Rod Stewart, Mick Jagger, and more. As a result, it feels like a classic rock fantasy brought to life! The show features the talents of Martin D. Andrew and Johnny Morocco.

Hatfield & McCoy Dinner Feud

Technically this show won’t open until 2018, but what can we say, we’re excited about it! Guests will be treated to a feudin’, feastin’ family fun as they become part of the longest-running feud in history. Watch as the Hatfields and McCoys try to settle their difference in a hilarious dance and comedy review—mountain style! The show also features a southern homestyle feast, so come hungry!


Silver Dollar City Attractions/Facebook

New in Branson: Festivals

Silver Dollar City’s Festival of Wonder

Set for a spring debut, the Festival of Wonder features amazing acts of curiosity and larger-than-life performances. Among the headliners are the Earth Harp Collection, who play the world’s largest stringed instrument; the Flamenco Kings, starring seven brothers who fuse flamenco with tap, martial arts, and more; as well as Speed Painter Dan Dunn, who creates stunning masterpieces in a matter of minutes. In addition, the festival will feature delicious new foods and The World of Bacon, showcasing specialties like bacon cannoli and chocolate covered bacon. Yum!

Silver Dollar City’s New Echo Hollow Concert Series

This summer, Echo Hollow presents an all-new concert series taking its inspiration from the 70s, 80s, and 90s. Performances by Poco, The Spinners, The Lovin’ Spoonful and local favorite 80s cover band Members Only are planned. Concerts are set for June 2-4 and 9-11.


Silver Dollar City Attractions/Facebook

Silver Dollar City’s Food Days

2017 has been designated “The Year of Food and Crafts” at Silver Dollar City. Accordingly, the theme park is hosting Food Days, May 30-June 9 and July 31- August 20. The event will take park favorites like funnel cakes and milkshakes and put a new spin on them by adding wild new flavors to the mix. In addition, summer foods like hot dogs and grilled cheeses will feature unexpected toppings. That’s not all, though. Extreme Food Challenges will take place during Moonlight Madness, July 15-30, during which families can tackle foods like a 20-inch goliath pizza and 2-lb hamburger.

CAF Airpower History Tour

WWII aviation is the focus of the CAF Airpower History Tour, set for September 14-17 at the Branson Airport. The B-29/B-24 Squadron of the Commemorative Air Force is bringing aircraft’s, pilots, and crews from over 70 CAF units to Branson. Aircraft such as the P-51 Mustang, B-17 Flying Fortress, and B-25 Mitchell will be on hand, as will the one of the rarest WWII bombers, the B-29 FIFI.

As you can see, when it comes to what’s new in Branson, vacationers can look forward to a little bit of everything. Which new attraction, show, or festival are you most excited about? Let us know in the comments!

Ashley is Reserve Direct’s travel expert, visiting Branson to find the best travel tips, money-saving deals and insider information. With over 10 years of experience in first-hand-travel adventures, she shares her stories, advice, and current events to help you stay in the know.

Silver Dollar City excels at keeping things fresh, fun and family-oriented. This spring, the tradition continues with the all-new Festival of Wonder set for April 6-30, 2017.

Festival of Wonder

Silver Dollar City Attractions/Facebook

Replacing the long-running World Fest, Festival of Wonder at Silver Dollar City features jaw-dropping and unbelievable acts. Everything from singers, dancers, artists and acrobats will take the stage. On top of that, there are delicious food offerings available including The World of Bacon. (That’s a world I want to live in!)

The Entertainment

Get a front row seat for the amazing entertainment and larger-than-life performances for the Festival of Wonder. Every show is guaranteed to WOW! Get a sneak peek at all that’s happening at this spring festival below:

Earth Harp Collective
You’ve never seen a stringed instrument this big! It’s so massive, it will stretch the full length of the Red Gold Heritage Hall! And just wait until you the music it makes. Once you do, you’ll easily see why this group was a finalist on America’s Got Talent!

Flamenco Kings
This troupe of seven brothers is multi-talented musicians and acrobatic dancers using flamenco, ballet and tap to create an astounding showcase you’ve gotta see to believe.

The Balancing Wonders
Agility, coordination, and skill combine during a show where everyday objects are used in highly unusual (and unexpected) ways.

Speed Painting
Artist Dan Dunn amazes audiences as he creates incredible masterpieces—in just minutes! He’s appeared on TV shows like Ellen DeGeneres and Jimmy Fallon. Now, he brings his wonderful talent to Silver Dollar City!

Melodies on Air
It’s truly astounding how beautiful air can be! These musicians use flutes, clay and carved whistles to create a smooth, mellow sound unlike any other.

Harp and Hang Drum
Marianne Gubri and Paolo Borghi bring these interesting instruments to life. Their performance is an infusion of hypnotic sounds, that makes a day at Silver Dollar City soothing after all those thrill rides.

The Glass Armonica
Brian Engel brings glass music to life by using various goblets and snifters. Popular songs, classical hits, and even jazz standards sound simple yet complex during this ethereal performance.

The Food

Foods of Wonder are an equally appealing part of Festival of Wonder, too. Check out some of the taste bud pleasing specialties lined-up for this special Silver Dollar City event.

  • Gourmet Grilled Cheese Varieties
  • Fry Bread Heaven
  • The World of Bacon
  • Curious Kabobs
  • Grilled Obsessions
  • New Flat Bread Creations
  • Outrageous Cinnamon Rolls & Bodacious Brownies
  • Incredible New Blended Beverages


Sounds pretty delicious, right? And c’mon, you know you’re intrigued by The World of Bacon.

Be sure to add the Festival of Wonder to your Silver Dollar City spring getaway for a fun-filled vacation. With Reserve Branson, you can always stay on top of what’s happening Branson and get the lowest prices on everything from Silver Dollar City tickets to hotel rooms.

Ashley is Reserve Direct’s travel expert, visiting Branson to find the best travel tips, money-saving deals and insider information. With over 10 years of experience in first-hand-travel adventures, she shares her stories, advice, and current events to help you stay in the know.

Headed to Silver Dollar City anytime soon?  If so, you might be interested in purchasing a Silver Dollar City Trailblazer Pass.  It’s the best way to enjoy all of your favorite rides without having to wait in line.

Silver Dollar City Trailblazer Pass

Skip the lines for front row access to Silver Dollar City’s newest coaster–Outlaw Run!

The Silver Dollar City Trailblazer Pass cost $35.00 (plus tax) and is good for up to eight rides.  When you purchase the pass, you’ll get to go straight to the front of the line at Outlaw Run, WildFire, PowderKeg, FireFall, The Giant Barn Swing, Thunderation, Fire-In-The-Hole, Frisco Silver Dollar Line Steam Train, Electro Spin, Magnificent Wave Carousel, American Plunge, Lost River of the Ozarks and Tom & Huck’s RiverBlast. Want to skip the lines all day long? The Super TrailBlazer Pass, for $65 (plus tax) is the pass for you.

If you plan on purchasing a pass, please note there is a limited number of Trailblazer passes available each day. Be sure to stop by the Cave Information Desk at the Hospitality House to purchase a pass. Alternatively, you can order one online before your Branson vacation. In fact, ordering online is the best way to go as passes are $3 cheaper online.

One of the great things about a Silver Dollar City Trailblazer Pass is the option to add the Marvel Cave Lantern Light tour for only $10.  Silver Dollar City evolved around Marvel Cave. Now, the park offers visitors in the area a chance to discover this natural wonder the way Ozark explorers did. 

Guides dressed in period costume delight guests with historical facts and little-known stories during this nostalgic 90-minute journey each day. Now open to guests on the Lantern Light Tour, see the Mammoth Room! Last toured in the late 1950s, this large room is located just to the right of the guest trail in the Cathedral Room. Highlights of the re-opened trail include the bat wall, the only known “Spanish ladder” left in the cave (circa 1541) and many colorful stories! Tour begins at 4:30 p.m. when Silver Dollar City closes at 6 p.m. Tour begins at 5:30 p.m. when Silver Dollar City closes at 7 p.m. or later.

Get your Silver Dollar City tickets today to experience the thrilling attractions, entertaining shows and exciting festivals you can only find in Branson.

Ashley is Reserve Direct’s travel expert, visiting Branson to find the best travel tips, money-saving deals and insider information. With over 10 years of experience in first-hand-travel adventures, she shares her stories, advice, and current events to help you stay in the know.

Up Close Concerts is entering their 11th year of producing entertaining shows in Branson, Missouri. For 2017, all shows are held at the Welk Resort and Dick Clark’s American Bandstand Theater.  Curious about who’s coming to town?  Take a look at the lineup.



atkinsj / wikimedia

Kris Kristofferson
April 7
Welk Resort Theatre
Kristoffer “Kris” Kristofferson is a singer, songwriter, musician and actor. He wrote and recorded the songs “Me and Bobby McGee”, “For the Good Times”, “Sunday Mornin’ Comin’ Down” and “Help Me Make It through the Night”.

Ricky Nelson Remembered starring Matthew and Gunnar
April 12
Dick Clark’s American Bandstand Theater
Starring Matthew and Gunnar Nelson, this show pays tribute to their father, Ricky Nelson.


Vicki Lawrence

Vicki Lawrence and Mama: A Two Woman Show
May 14
Dick Clark’s American Bandstand Theater
Vicki Lawrence is an actress, comedian and signer best known for her performances on The Carol Burnett Show and the comedy series “Mama’s Family.”

The Bellamy Brothers
May 31
Dick Clark’s American Bandstand Theater
This pop and country music duo is famous for songs like “If I Said You Had a Beautiful Body,” “Let Your Love Flow,” and “Old Hippie.”


Karen Mitchell / Wikimedia

John Conlee
June 7
Dick Clark’s American Bandstand Theater
Conlee is a country music singer who has charted 32 hit singles on the Billboard Hot Country chart over 25+ years. His seven #1 hits include “Lady Lay Down,” “Backside of Thirty,” “Common Man,” “I’m Only in It for the Love,” “In My Eyes,” “As Long As I’m Rockin’ with You” and “Got My Heart Set on You.”

Bill Anderson and Moe Bandy
June 23
Welk Resort Theatre
Moe Bandy and Bill Anderson join forces for a one-night-only show. Bandy and Anderson will be performing solos and ideally a memorable duet or two.

rsz_trace_adkins_2015Trace Adkins
June 30
Welk Resort Theatre
Big in stature and big in the world of country music, Adkins has a large catalog of hits to pull from. With 31 Top 40 songs including five #1 hits to his name, it’s sure to be an amazing concert from one of the world’s most popular country stars.

T.G. Sheppard and Kelly Lang
July 5
Dick Clark’s American Bandstand Theater
These two talented artists (and spouses) will sing their biggest songs as well as classic tunes. Lang is best known for “How Do You Mend a Broken Heart,” while Sheppard’s chart toppers include “Only One You” and “Last Cheater’s Waltz.


Shervin Sadarai / Wikimedia

Sister Sledge
July 7
Welk Resort Theatre
Sister Sledge is an R&B pop group best known for hits like “We are Family,” “He’s the Greatest Dancer,” and “Lost in Music.”

Terry Fator
August 11-12
Welk Resort Theatre
Fator is a ventriloquist, impressionist, comedian, and singer who rose to fame on “America’s Got Talent.”


Richie McDonald / Facebook

Richie McDonald – Lead Singer of Lonestar
August 13
Welk Resort Theatre
While the lead singer of Lonestar, McDonald reached the top of the charts with songs like “Amazed,” “I’m Already There,” “What About Now,” “My Front Porch Looking In,” and many more.

Ronnie Milsap
September 22
Welk Resort Theatre
The Grand Ole Opry member’s signature hits include “Pure Love,” “Smoky Mountain Rain,” “Stranger in My House,” and “She Keeps the Home Fires Burning.” Opening the show is Johnny Rodriguez, a famous Latin American country music singer.

Charley Pride

Charley Pride

Charley Pride
September 29
Welk Resort Theatre
With 36 No. 1 hits to his name, Pride has a full repertoire to pull from for his live shows. The Country Music Hall of Fame member is famous for songs like “Kiss an Angel Good Mornin,'” “I Can’t Believe That You Stopped Loving Me,” “I’d Rather Love You,” and “Is Anybody Goin’ to San Antone.” Janie Frick is the special guest star opening the show.

Herman’s Hermits starring Peter Noone and special guest B.J. Thomas
October 6-7
Welk Resort Theatre
Classic songs such as “I’m into Something Good,” “What a Wonderful World (This Would Be),” “I’m Henry the Eighth, I Am,” and “Can’t You Hear my Heartbeat” transports visitors back to the heyday of the 1960s. B.J. Thomas also performs.


Matt Spicher / Wikimedia

The Roots & Boots Tour
October 13
Welk Resort Theatre
Join Pam Tillis, Sammy Kershaw and Collin Raye for a star-studded performance featuring all their chart-topping hits.

William Shatner – “Shatner’s World: We Just Live In It”
October 27
Welk Resort Theatre

Actor William Shatner will share stories from his life and career during his one-man show in Branson MO.


Larry Gatlin & The Gatlin Brothers

Larry Gatlin & The Gatlin Brothers
November 1, 15
Welk Resort Theatre
Best known for “Broken Lady”, “All the Gold in California”, “Houston (Means I’m One Day Closer to You)”, “She Used to Be Somebody’s Baby”, and “Talkin’ to the Moon,” this group will perform for two nights only in Branson.

Country Unplugged Tour
Starring Mark Chesnutt, Lorrie Morgan & Joe Diffie
November 8
Dick Clark’s American Bandstand Theater
Three country music stars come together to perform all of their biggest hits!

Ashley is Reserve Direct’s travel expert, visiting Branson to find the best travel tips, money-saving deals and insider information. With over 10 years of experience in first-hand-travel adventures, she shares her stories, advice, and current events to help you stay in the know.

Searching for a break from the winter blues? In Branson, Missouri the weather is warming up just in time for a spring break. Bring your loved ones to this Midwest town for one-of-a-kind family fun. From new additions to theme parks to kid-friendly Branson shows and attractions, this destination caters to families and is sure to give you just the break you need. Need a nudge to get your spring break started? Read my Branson spring break vacation ideas for families.

Branson Spring Break butterfly-palace-branson-chamber_rsz

Silver_Dollar_City_-2528001-2529Spring Ride Days at Silver Dollar City

The best place to spend your Spring Break? Silver Dollar City, of course. During their Spring Ride Days, scheduled March 15-April 2, your family can be some of the first guests to experience Silver Dollar City thrills in 2017. The park features over 40 thrilling rides and attractions, such as the daring Outlaw Run and multi-looping Wildfire, ideal for the adrenaline-seekers in your group. Have younger kids with you? The family-friendly, kid-size rides at Grand Exposition and Fireman’s Landing are
perfect for your pint-sized loved ones.

Stomp, Cheer and Clap at Dixie Stampede

Dixie Stampede Branson_001I’ve never seen a kid at the Dixie Stampede bored. And that’s saying something, considering how fickle kids’ attention spans can be these days. From the interactive competitions, which let you yell, whoop, and stomp your feet as you cheer on your team, to the fact you get to eat with your hands, Dixie Stampede is a kids dream. Parents, not to worry, you’ll be entertained too. Each year, Dolly Parton makes the show bigger and better. 2017 is no exception. Add Dixie Stampede tickets to your Branson Spring Break vacation and see what the new show is all about.

Make a Splash at a Water Park Resort

IWelk_Resort_Hotel___Splashatorium_(046)t still may be too chilly outside to take advantage of the Branson lakes or even your hotel’s outdoor pool. Save the day by reserving a stay at a Branson Water Park Resort. Several properties, including Castle Rock Resort, Welk Resort and Grand Country Inn, offer indoor water parks perfect for aquatic fun. Your kids will love the slides, drop buckets, splash zones and giant pools. You’ll love seeing them laugh, splash and play! Don’t worry. There are hot tubs for parents to enjoy, too.

Take a Walk on the Wild Side

National_Tiger_Sanctuary_(007)Another Branson Spring Break idea for families involves a walk on the wild side. Animals are a sure fire way to please kids. They just love them! Luckily, Branson attractions are offering more and more ways to experience animals up close. To view gorgeous tigers in all their glory, visit the National Tiger Sanctuary. Searching for smaller, even baby-sized critters? The Promised Land Zoo is for you. Looking for something in flight? The Butterfly Palace is ideal for gazing at tropical butterflies. Bonus – The butterflies will even land on you, creating a truly unique souvenir photograph.

Adventure_Ziplines_of_Branson_(009)Take to the Sky

Get a birds-eye-view of the Ozarks with Branson ziplines. Two companies in Branson offer zipline tours, each distinctly different. At Branson Zipline, the course is through the canopy of the Ozark Mountains creating a more outdoorsy course complete with a ride in a Pinzgaur. Adventure Ziplines, however, is located in the heart of Branson and their tour combines the woods with city views so you can have the best of both worlds. Another way to take to the sky is the Vigilante ZipRider. At this attraction, you don’t zip through a course. Instead, you zoom down one 1/2 mile zipline at speeds reaching 50 mph all while in a harnessed seat. Sit back, enjoy the sights and zip on through to the other side.

These are some of the best Branson Spring Break vacation ideas for families. Book your vacation now and take a break from the everyday. You need it! (And deserve it.)

Ashley is Reserve Direct’s travel expert, visiting Branson to find the best travel tips, money-saving deals and insider information. With over 10 years of experience in first-hand-travel adventures, she shares her stories, advice, and current events to help you stay in the know.

Silver Dollar City, a Midwest theme park set in the 1880s, welcomes millions of visitors each year. Families from across the United States flock here for thrilling rides, entertaining shows, delicious food and so much more! They may know they can’t wait to ride Outlaw Run, but they only graze the surface of what there really is to know about this Branson theme park. Discover this attraction’s history, legend and claims to fame with our rundown of intriguing Silver Dollar City facts.


Marvel Cave/Brent Schmidt, flickr

1) It All Started with a Hole in the Ground

It’s not every day a theme park is born from a hole in the ground, but at Silver Dollar City, that’s exactly what happened. Marvel Cave, an enormous cavern, was first explored by Osage Indians in the 1500s. Then, it was mined by a group of Union Civil War veterans in the 1880s. After word spread of this natural wonder, mining expert William Henry Lynch opened the cave for public tours in 1894.

Finally, Hugo and Mary Herschend, founders of Silver Dollar City, signed a 99-year lease on the cave in 1950. They began implementing the initial phases of the 1880s mining town, which included demonstrating craftsmen, and the idea behind Silver Dollar City was born.

2) Coining a Name

One of the Silver Dollar City facts many people are curious about is how the park got its name. The answer may surprise you! It all began with a promotional idea. When the park first opened in 1960, it gave out silver dollars for change. As a result, word-of-mouth exposure was rampant. Visitors who returned home would remark on their visit to “Silver Dollar City” and the name stuck.


Silver Dollar City in 1960/Silver Dollar City Attractions, Facebook

3) It Takes a Village, an Ozark Village

The park was initially modeled after an 1880s Ozark Village. Accordingly, the town had a blacksmith shop, general store, ice cream parlor, doll shop, two authentic log structures and the Wilderness Church. The attraction did have strolling entertainers, as well as a show, themed after the Hatfield and McCoy Feud. However, no rides were available at that time. A theme park without rides? Silver Dollar City facts don’t get more unusual than that!

4) What was the First Ride at Silver Dollar City?

Speaking of rides, the very first ride at Silver Dollar City was the Frisco Silver Dollar Line. This steam train ride, which opened in 1962, remains largely the same today as it did then. Riders are treated to a leisurely, scenic 20-minute ride through the Ozarks. Of course, some pesky, no-good robbers always seem to lurk in those woods. The faithful conductor, though, continues to save passengers 50 years and counting. So, don’t fret—this is a safe ride!


Outlaw Run/Silver Dollar City Attractions, Facebook

5) The World’s Most Daring Wooden Coaster

Die hard Silver Dollar City fans already know Outlaw Run is the park’s latest and greatest thrill ride. However, they might not know this attraction is truly groundbreaking. In fact, Outlaw Run is the world’s most daring wooden coaster. Why so? Because it includes the world’s first and only double barrel roll on a wooden coaster; it’s the only wooden coaster to twist upside down; and is the world’s steepest wood coaster with a drop of more than 16 stories!

6) Silver Dollar City Loves Christmas

When one thinks of massive holiday light displays, Silver Dollar City may not be the first attraction to cross your mind. I’ve got news for you: that needs to change! This premier Midwest theme park loves Christmas and celebrates it with an all-out, one-of-a-kind spectacle that truly dazzles. First of all, there’s the glow of over five million lights. Secondly, there’s over 1,000 decorated Christmas trees. Thirdly, there are two Broadway-style shows included free with park admission. As if that’s not enough, there’s also 5-Story Special Effects Christmas Tree, Holly Jolly Christmas Light Parade featuring Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer & Friends, and dozens of stores ideal for holiday shopping. It’s no wonder Good Morning America has named Silver Dollar City “A Top 5 Spot To Light Up The Holidays!”

Glass Blowing

7) Demonstrating Craftsmen Central to Park’s Purpose

Demonstrating craftsmen have long been an integral part of Silver Dollar City. The park held its first craft festival in 1963. During which, 19 craftsmen showcased woodworking, weaving, blacksmithing, glass blowing and other unique trades. The demonstrating craftsmen were such a hit, the owners decided to make them residents of the park year-round. Today, there are over 100 demonstrating craftsmen on the park at any given time.

8) The Food is a Main Attraction

Many times, theme park food gets fairly lukewarm reviews. Luckily, that’s not the case at this theme park. When it comes to Silver Dollar City facts, there’s one no one can argue with—they’re food is delicious! In particular, you’ve got to try the Lumbercamp Falls Skillet; their melt-in-your-mouth funnel cakes; and the made-on-site taffy with flavors ranging from watermelon to butterscotch and so much more. Seriously, you could make a day at this park just eating!

wilderness-church-062-rsz Silver Dollar City Facts

Wilderness Church/Silver Dollar City

9) You Can Say “I Do” at the Park

Remember the Wilderness Church mentioned earlier? It was one of the original Ozark Village buildings and is still a prominent part of the park today. Visitors love the church so much, many wanted to get married here. So, the park agreed! Now, they host over 100 weddings a year. Be on the lookout for a bride riding roller coasters in her wedding gown. Hey, it could happen!

10) Silver Dollar City has its Own Resort

Why let the Silver Dollar City experience end at the park? Reserve a cabin at the Wilderness Resort to continue the authentic, all-American, outdoorsy experience. These cabins are outfitted with the latest creature comforts, while also providing a nice respite from the everyday hustle and bustle. Gather round a campfire for smores, gaze at the star-filled skies, and sleep soundly in your Pioneer-inspired yet modern day cabin. The resort gets bonus points for its free shuttle to Silver Dollar City!

Did You Know these 10 Silver Dollar City Facts?

I told you a few of the facts about Silver Dollar City were surprising. Of course, there is always more to learn about Silver Dollar City. And the best way to do so is by experiencing it firsthand. Purchase your Silver Dollar City tickets from Reserve Branson and start planning your vacation in the Ozark Mountains today.

One of the best things about Legends in Concert is the way the show constantly changes its line-up, creating a fresh new show for Branson visitors year after year. In 2017, Legends in Concert Branson shakes up the tribute artists performing. Old favorites will return as will the trend of bringing in more contemporary artists. Ready to find out who is performing at Legends in Concert? Read on.

The full 2017 Legends in Concert Branson spring tribute artist line-up includes:


Spring Line-Up: February 3 – May 16
George Strait (Larry Turner)
The Blues Brothers (Clint Nievar and Danny Z)
Elvis Presley (variety of performers)
The Temptations (Talmadge Pearsall, Earl Welch, Greg Laster, Ditannual Hutchinson, Grady Harrell III): Feb. 3-May 11
Dusty Springfield (Katy Setterfield): Feb. 3-March 31
Prince (Frank Moore): Feb. 16-March 2
Adele (J.C. Brando): April 1-May 16
Michael Jackson (Michael Knight): May 12-16


Summer Line-Up: May 22– September 6
The Blues Brothers (Clint Nievar and Danny Z)
Elvis Presley (variety of performers)
Celine Dion (Elisa Furr)
Michael Jackson (Michael Knight)
Brooks and Dunn (Doug Brewin and Larry Turner)
Bruno Mars (Isaiah): June 1-July 31


Fall Line-Up: September 7 – October 31
Frank Sinatra (Robbie Howard)
Nedgra Culp (Aretha Franklin)
Alan Jackson (Doug Brewin)
The Blues Brothers (Clint Nievar and Danny Z)
Elvis Presley (Dean Z)


Winter Line-Up (November 2 – December 31)
Michael Jackson (Michael Knight)
Alan Jackson (Doug Brewin)
The Blues Brothers (Clint Nievar and Danny Z)
Elvis Presley (Dean Z)
Barbara Streisand (Sharon Owens): Nov. 2-Dec. 30

Legends in Concert Branson is hosting a variety of Elvis tribute artists in 2017 in order to showcase all of the talented artists who fill the role of the King of Rock. Several Ultimate Elvis Tribute Artist Champions will take the stage, including Cody Slaughter, Dean Z, Bill Cherry, Ted Torres and Travis Powell.

Legends in Concert Branson is one of the first shows to open in Branson, with the 2017 show opener set for February 3 at 8pm. Tickets are on sale now.

Ashley is Reserve Direct’s travel expert, visiting Branson to find the best travel tips, money-saving deals and insider information. With over 10 years of experience in first-hand-travel adventures, she shares her stories, advice, and current events to help you stay in the know.
Searching for a quick getaway during January and February?  You can save money, avoid the crowds and still have fun in Branson this winter.  Several Branson shows are open during this time, as are Branson attractions.  Plus, places to stay in Branson offer great deals this time of year, making a vacation in Branson an easy solution to any cabin fever that may arise. Browse through all the the things to do in Branson during January and February to get a head start on your plans. 
During the month of January, the Grand Country Music Hall is the place to be in Branson for grand entertainment. The complex features three great shows:

To make a weekend out of it, simply stay at the on-site Grand Country Inn and Waterpark.   Visitors can enjoy a vast array of activities and hours of aquatic family fun with over 20,000 square feet of year-round fun that is free to Inn guests.

February in Branson, Missouri ushers in the opening of more Branson shows, including:

Attractions in Branson like the Butterfly Palace, Ripley’s Believe It or Not Museum, and the Titanic Museum Branson are also open during January and February, adding some extra fun to your getaway in the Ozarks.

For deals on Branson hotels, check out the great rates available at:

You may also be interested in the Welk Resort, which offers rooms at a value price and the on-site Splash-A-Torium creates hours of indoor aquatic fun.  The Lodges at Timber Ridge also have access to the Splash-A-Torium and they are currently offering low rates on their luxurious lodges.  Another luxurious place to stay with incredible savings is StoneBridge Resort.  Their accommodations and on-site amenities provide everything you need to get away from it all.

This winter check-in to Branson, MO and see what hot, winter fun is all about!