The 'Live Entertainment...
The 'Live Entertainment Capitol of the World' is moving into the new millenium with entertainment and activities for all ages. Sustaining these old-fashioned values beats the heart of excitement...an energizing rhythm of music, comedy, magic and fun that pulsates morning, noon and night. Forty theaters and more than eighty shows provide guests with entertainment options unlike any other vacation destination in the world. Three of America's most beautiful lakes and numerous attractions offer tremendous outdoor adventure and family recreation. Branson, Missouri combines neon with nature. World-class shows and attractions plus three scenic lakes and a wealth of outdoor recreation opportunities await visitors. Branson: That's Entertainment!
Offseason in Branson
I attempted to have Bob drive up the scenic Arkansas route 7 to Jasper (which was reputed to have green water in the river), but he got very impatient with the turns and ups and downs, so after we ate lunch at Frank's Hickory House BBQ in Choctaw, we crossed to US 65. We stopped at the Buffalo National River (for a passport stamp). It looks like it would really be fun to do a canoe trip there, but not at this time of year - you'd need an exposure suit. After we checked in to the Sunterra resort at Fall Creek, we went out and had dinner at Shorty's
Saturday Feb 18th - snowed. A lot. Well - about 4 inches. So we spent the day inside and ate the food we'd had in the cooler and watched the Olympics. Bob went down and started the car, and it did start, but we didn't go anywhere.
Sunday Feb 19th - very very cold. Stayed inside and just ate tuna fish sandwiches.
Monday Feb 20th - Snow has been cleared from the streets, and it is warmer, so Bob plugged in the car to warm it up, and we started out to go to the Trout Hatchery about 11. The car had NO POWER WHATSOEVER. I thought I might have to get out and push it up the hill. Bob said it was the transmission. So almost before we got out of the resort, I decided to scrap the plans to go to the hatchery, and just go to the
grocery store to get some more food.
We managed to get to the Jubilee (grocery store) by 11:30 and Bob bought some Lean Cuisine meals. The freezer on the little refrigerator in the unit isn't big enough for more than about 3 of those packages. I suggested we have lunch while we were there (no problem with food thawing), but the McDonalds next door was being rehabbed inside and had only a drive-through, and Bob didn't want to drive through. So we went to Taco Bell, at which point I found out that he doesn't LIKE Taco Bell and in fact doesn't really like any Mexican food except tacos.
We came back to the unit - the transmission seems to be working a little better now.
"Tuesday Feb 21st."
I had decided that we ought to see at least one show while we were in Branson, and Bob doesn't care for country music, so I thought the IMAX theatre would be a good compromise. There were 6 choices, including a show on volcanoes, a show on NASCAR, and a show called "Ozarks-Legacy and Legend", which purported to be a history of the area which was shown once at 4 pm.
In the morning I had made an appointment with the hairdresser for right after water aerobics. But the hairdresser wanted to cancel and do it at 4, which conflicted with the IMAX
We started off at 3:30, and got there way early, so we wandered around the mall that the theatre was in (there was also a real movie theatre and a 'show' type theatre there, plus a lot of stores and a food court). I won't critique the film here, but some of it was somewhat unbelievable. Like how a kid could just pick up a fiddle and start to play a reel and dance in it at the same time, and why a couple of kids who were out for a picnic one day and fell into a cave would have a kerosene lantern with them.
Also the obligatory airplane sequence - a barnstormer is going to take two poor kids up for a ride without them paying something?
We ate a very early dinner at McFarlains, which was supposed to be a family restaurant with local recipes. It was in the IMAX mall. I didn't think the food was very good. I got fried green tomatoes, which were greasy. Bob got fish and chips, but the chips were just regular fries. The cornbread was good. We took a lot of it home with us. The car is working somewhat better.
"Wednesday Feb 22nd."
This time when I went to the water aerobics, I took my computer with me to use the wireless instead of using the very very slow dial-up modem which cost 25 cents for each call. (We had $4 worth of charges when we left - I was kind of hoping that they wouldn't actually keep track like when we were in Ormond Beach when they used the honor system for charging.) The hairdresser again wanted to postpone my appointment, so I said OK and went and used the computer until she was ready for me. She cut my hair, and then when she was getting ready to do the waxing, some people from Sunterra came in to ask question (are you a timeshare owner? what is your favorite vacation memory?)
The beauty shop person charged double what was listed for the waxing. Chin and lip were all supposed to be $5 and she charged $10 each.
After eating lunch, we finally went out to the trout hatchery which was right below the dam. We went to Montana Mike's for dinner.
"Thursday Feb 23"
Went to the water aerobics for the last time. The snow is melted and it is pretty warm. We left as soon as I could get dried off from the pool (the water aerobics was from 9:30 to 10:30 and we left at 11) for a visit to Wilson's Creek Battleground - a NPS site which was south of Springfield. My first stamp in the North Central section of my passport. We had lunch at KFC before we got there.
This was actually a very interesting site. On the way back, however, I got us quite lost. I didn't have a Missouri map (this is the only state I've been to so far where there wasn't a Visitor's Center on the entrance road with a place to get a state map), and the Missouri roads are both lettered and numbered. I wanted to go back on route ZZ to route M, but we got onto route FF, which dead ended into a place with a gravel road on one side and the other side started out paved and then became gravel, and when we got to the top of a hill there was a sign which said that the road was flooded at high water. That didn't look promising.
We ended up at the south side of Springfield, and found US 65 to drive back to Branson. Bob got fuel back by the resort about 4. I had the computer with me and he let me out at the front desk area. I went and did the internet until about 6:30 when a whole bunch of rowdy seniors (about 18-20 of them) came in to play dominos, and took all the chairs and tables there. I called mother while I was walking back to the unit.
"Friday Feb 24th"
Checked out at 9. Started the drive to Memphis