Written by callen60 on 19 Jan, 2010
Eight decades or more into the age of commercial air travel, there aren’t many brand new airports opening these days. A new one—and a privately funded one at that—just opened in the Ozarks, and I had the opportunity to fly out of the new Branson…Read More
Eight decades or more into the age of commercial air travel, there aren’t many brand new airports opening these days. A new one—and a privately funded one at that—just opened in the Ozarks, and I had the opportunity to fly out of the new Branson Airport this week, en route to DC.Branson sits about 45 minutes south of Springfield, MO, the home of competitor Springfield-Branson National Airport. The hyphen showed up about 10 years ago, when the booming music show business boosted Branson’s profile as a vacation destination for middle income mid-America. That only stalled local desire to give the country music mecca its own airfield, and in early 2009 the new, privately funded airport announced that AirTran would begin daily service to Atlanta.What’s it like? For starters, it was like having an airport to yourself. It's about 20 minutes southeast of Branson, and the last six miles are well off the highway. Parking in the nearly empty lot made it feel more like the air travel of my childhood days: not so many people flying, no lines, and little of the rushing and noise that characterizes terminals today. I parked in the long-term lot, within 60 yards of the door (I paced it off) and alongside only about 20 other cars, and then waited in line with five other people to belatedly add a checked bag to my online boarding pass. (For $15 extra, I was willing to give someone else the job of keeping an eye on my bag during a four-hour layover.) Everyone, from the counter clerk to the TSA agents, seemed a little distracted, trying to serve the few of us that were there with even fewer people. I was untying my shoes and putting my carry-on through the x-ray machine when the blue-shirted TSA woman rushed up to catch me and ask for my boarding pass and ID. Nonetheless, I was happy with the quickest security clearance I’ve experienced in decades. Shoes retied, I exited the secure area and turned the corner into the terminal: part modern pole barn and part fake Ozarks storefront, right down to the recently weathered wood. The two real establishments—a Famous Dave’s BBQ, housed inside the shell of a pretend sawmill (complete with turning waterwheel) and a Bass Pro Shop’s ‘General Store’—compete visually with the signs for Goldie’s Sawmill, the White River Hotel, and Henry Sullenger’s Saloon. Only the latter made me look twice to see if they were open for business. Why fly here? Service is pretty limited. AirTran operates one flight a day to Atlanta, which in the future departs at 1 pm (it becomes two flights in early April 2010). That might open up more options than the 2:45 flight I’m taking today, depositing me in Atlanta for almost four hours before heading on to Washington Reagan and arriving at 10:35. But it wasn’t the service that attracted me: it was the $238 fare (taxes included), which beat the flights out of Springfield by $300 during my nearly-too-late search for a ticket. Most compendia of travel tips don’t recommend booking a mere 10 days in advance, but it’s rare for a Springfield-DC round trip come in under $400 in the best of circumstances. In addition, I traded a 15-minute trip to Springfield-Branson for an hour drive, but it’s a nice one through the Ozark hills. Parking here is steeper than it should be: the long-term parking was $12/day, even higher than the $10/day at Springfield-Branson (which I always skip for the off-site parking and curbside service from the car rental companies a half-mile away; a bargain at $6/day).If your destination is indeed Branson (or something close), this airport does make a lot of sense. It’s about 6 miles off of US 65, at the end of a dead-end road that winds through Troon Golf’s Branson Creek course and attending developments, plus John Daly’s more recent and oddly named Murder Rock course. Along the way, it will probably strike you that you’re not in the middle of typical airport terrain: the last two miles go up, down and mostly through some pretty impressive Ozark river bluffs, whose limestone still shines bright following the recent blasting that created a road here. It’s odd to find road signs warning you about steep hills and sharp curves as you cover the last miles to an airfield.If you’re visiting Springfield, an hour’s drive will get you to the center of the city, and may be what you’re used to in a larger Metro area. It will also give you a visual introduction to the Ozarks and its limestone that you might miss at the city’s airport on Springfield’s northwest side. And the more southern the location of the family, work, or hotel that brought you here, the less of a premium you’ll pay in transit time. Don’t expect too many of the amenities available at other airports. Springfield’s new Midfield Terminal opened last spring (only partially in response to the new competition in Branson), and includes what many other airports forgot, or ignore: air travel involves not only passengers, but also people who meet them. There’s no space in Branson’s building for doing anything but checking in, and more than enough space in the ‘terminal’ for those who have. Thankfully, the designer chose to forego the standard airport chairs, opting instead for rustic-looking timber-and-upholstery individual chairs. My rear end was noticeably surprised at being comfortable in such a setting. Above all, what stayed with me was the quiet and calm. (The few times that I’ve retreated to a frequent flier lounge, I’ve realized how rare that is in airports, and why some folks might pay $400 a year for what I previously thought of as free cookies and Diet Coke.) Of course, both the owner and new tenants of Branson airport are hoping it won’t stay that way, and it won’t. Either traffic will increase, and this bet will pay off, or it won’t, and the runway that’s wedged atop these hollers will go completely quiet. In the meantime, I’m adding it to my list of airports to consider. Hopefully, its presence will generate enough business to bring down fares at Springfield-Branson. Perhaps the hour’s drive will do what the three-hour trip to Tulsa, Kansas City, Northwest Arkansas and St. Louis has yet to accomplish for Springfield residents. Close
Written by btwood2 on 13 Feb, 2005
We were lucky that, on the very evening of the day we arrived in Branson, our resort (Sunterra Fall Creek) was putting on this dinner show at Clementine’s, their restaurant. As many as 20 Branson entertainers would be stopping by during the show to…Read More
We were lucky that, on the very evening of the day we arrived in Branson, our resort (Sunterra Fall Creek) was putting on this dinner show at Clementine’s, their restaurant. As many as 20 Branson entertainers would be stopping by during the show to do a number or two. We decided that this would be a good way to get a sampling of the types of shows here for a fraction of the cost of going to each one and that it could make it easier for us to decide which shows to select. We got more than we bargained for!
When we bought the tickets, at $6.50 per adult, we were told to come early to stand in line for a good seat, because this show always sells out. Although we weren’t the first in line, we were fairly fast-moving once the doors opened – no, we didn’t push anyone else aside, but we did manage to get center-front row seats. Probably because a round end table just big enough for two had been placed up in front against a long center table, and others in larger groups all were seating themselves at the longer tables. We lucked out once again when our "row" was selected to be the first at the buffet, an all-you-can-eat selection of spaghetti, salad, bread, spice cake, and beverages, such as sodas, bottled water, and coffee.
The Show Begins Our emcees quickly got things moving when people were finishing dinner and performers began arriving. Fitting with the theme of the evening, the first to arrive were four cute young guys from Lost in the ‘50s singing a medley of songs from that decade. Not to be forgotten from the following decade, a musical duo from #1 Hits of the ‘60s came in bell bottoms and glitter to serenade us. They were followed by Dennis Michael Kolb, all in black leather. Thursday (in two more days), he was putting on "a one man show" at the resort for $18 per couple, with complimentary wine, cheese, and crackers. Dennis sings and does impressions of Roy Orbison, Elvis, Ricky Nelson, and the Beatles.
Well, if it ain’t the Duke Well, sorta… The resemblance is uncanny. John Wain looks an awful lot like John Wayne, and he does capitalize on it. At his weekend shows at the IMAX’s Little Opry Theatre, he also does Walter Brennan imitations. Janelle, the "cave lady" from Talking Rocks Cavern gave us a trivia question: "What is the main function of a cave?" Answer: "Drainage." Tours at this nearby Missouri cave range from mild to wild… Wild = "You will get very dirty in the mud cave." Dress appropriately.
My Husband, the Star Bob got picked to help Mike Douglas look-alike Dave Hamner in a magic trick using metal hoops. All he had to do was sit there, smile and look handsome, and handle some hoops - Dave did all the work. For Bob’s (minimal) efforts, we got a free ticket to Hamner-Barber Variety Show (see entry in this journal). Dolly Parton’s Dixie Stampede sent us a cowboy to sing "I Shoulda Been a Cowboy," which seemed a bit redundant. But although Dolly isn’t around much at the Stampede, they do have horseback riding competitions, ostrich and pig races, big four-course meals (vegetarian option available upon request), and of course, a "buffalo stampede."
Talented multi-generational Branson Families The Duttons are among them. They sing and play strings, mostly violins, and offer a variety of music, dancing, yodeling, and comedy at their own theater complex. The Hughes Brothers are another Branson family who came to entertain us, singing "Elvira" and other tunes. Country, gospel, and Broadway songs are included in their repertoire. Their family of 18 performers (and probably growing) includes wives and kids at their own Celebrity Theater on the Strip. Newcomers to Branson, the Warnocks from Wyoming work for tips only at the Branson Mall. Dad and four of his bright-eyed, angel-voiced daughters sang "Amazing Grace" for us.
Harley Worthit?: He was pretty silly, representing the Delene show, a country, gospel, and rock songstress providing afternoon shows at Hughes Brothers Theatre. Silly Harley gives new meaning to the words "mismatched." Jim Owen has a long and illustrious country music career, writing 130 hits in the last 35 years, including "Louisiana Woman, Mississippi Man" (Loretta Lynn), and he won an Emmy for portraying Hank Williams Sr. in a 1978 PBS special. He gave us a sample of his "Bless his Heart" comedy routine about the dumb things people do, which must have been so stupid that I’ve forgotten them all.
Our Lucky Night Most performers brought brochures and discount coupons to their shows, some for as much as $8 off per person, all passed out to us, the audience. This show was winding to a close, but the emcees told us to wait because they still had door prizes to give out. Everyone had gotten a couple of free raffle tickets when they arrived, and did I say it was our lucky night? I guess it was, because we were the winners of two Passion Play tickets in Eureka Springs, Arkansas. That made it that much easier to decide where our next destination would be…
Written by MilwVon on 12 Jul, 2007
While driving to see what was around Branson, we stumbled upon the Shepherd of the Hills Fish Hatchery. Located south of Branson off Hwy. 165, you can't miss it as it sits just below the Table Rock Dam.There are many large fish "tanks" that have a variety…Read More
While driving to see what was around Branson, we stumbled upon the Shepherd of the Hills Fish Hatchery. Located south of Branson off Hwy. 165, you can't miss it as it sits just below the Table Rock Dam.There are many large fish "tanks" that have a variety of sizes of trouts being raised to stock the local lakes throughout the Ozark Mountain area. As visitors walk around the open area, there are signs to explain how fish are bred and raised until their release.It was interesting to see some of the tanks loaded full of very small minnow sized fish ("fingerlings").... so many that you could really only see the swirling black mass in the water. As they grow, the fish are separated out to give them more space. They are moved probably three or four times before they are eventually netted and placed into a tank on a truck that will transport them to their final lake destination.This fish hatchery produces over one million fish annually! This is the largest in the Missouri Department of Conservation system and is the most visible of their trout preservation program. There is also a visitor center on site that provides additional information about the fish hatchery and conservation programs.Summer hours are from 9am to 6pm and there is no admission fee. Visitors do have the opportunity to buy fish food from small vending machines to throw into the tanks. It was fun to watch the fish come up to eat the food pellets as they were thrown into the water.If you have an hour or two, we would recommend a stop by this interesting educational facility. Close
Called "The best dinner show in Branson" by the AARP we felt that might be a bit of a stretch. While the show was fun (I’ll get to that in a minute), the dinner was poor. Guests had the choice of grilled rib eye steak…Read More
Called "The best dinner show in Branson" by the AARP we felt that might be a bit of a stretch. While the show was fun (I’ll get to that in a minute), the dinner was poor. Guests had the choice of grilled rib eye steak or chicken breast served with fruit, potatoes, coleslaw, and dessert with unlimited soft drinks and iced tea. I should make my first editorial comment here about the menu. On their website they state that the meal would include soup, dinner roll, and fruit cobbler. While we weren’t necessarily wanting soup in the 90+ degree heat, the warm watermelon and cantaloupe wasn’t very refreshing either. There was no roll and instead of a fruit cobbler they served a rather skimpy strawberry shortcake. We had the steaks which were on the fatty side, even for a rib eye, and either severely overcooked or raw. All in all, the meal was a big disappointment.The show starts shortly after they start serving dinner. The premise is that there are two "camps" or teams of lumberjacks competing in a variety of activities typical to men performing this job in the wilderness. The "Lone Pine Camp" was in competition with the home "Tall Timbers Camp" with two lumberjacks on each team. The show was emceed to explain each of the activities and the history behind each. He was informative and entertaining, adding to the show. Much of the antics were slapstick type humor, and was acceptable for young children.Some of the competitions include axe throwing, log rolling and team sawing. There were also a couple of competitions that involved members from the audience, including axe throwing, which frankly surprised me. The children rolling logs on the ground seemed much safer!The dinner and show started promptly at 5:30pm...and lasted 90 minutes. If you can make a request regarding where you’ll be seated, ask for the Lone Pine Camp area for two reasons. First, you will be seated out of the sun for a majority of the show. The Tall Timber seating area has full sun for the entire show with the sun setting directly in front of you. This was especially hot, plus it made for horrible photos. Speaking of photos, the second reason to sit in the Lone Pines’ Camp is that there is this really ugly netting hanging in front of the Tall Timbers’ Camp to prevent wood chips from flying into the seating area. This makes for very bad photos.Regarding photos, I should also point out that while their website states that no photos are permitted during the show, they did allow them. Several people sitting around us complained that they didn’t bring in their cameras, figuring they wouldn’t be able to take any actions shots, based on the Tall Timbers Lumberjack Show website.All and all, I would consider the Tall Timber Lumberjack Dinner Show to be about a six on a ten point scale with ten being outstanding.Additional information:681 Long Lonesome RoadBranson, MO 65616PH: (866) 338-2957Website: www.talltimbershows.com/home.html Ticket prices:Adults $35 + taxChildren (under age 15) $25 + taxNote about purchasing tickets: If you buy your tickets from the website www.BransonShows.com you will pay more for your tickets! I was able to find tickets on eBay for $32 + tax from a local ticket broker, saving about $3.50 per ticket. Close
Written by ajavagal on 01 Feb, 2006
On our last trip to Branson, we went in October. Fall foliage could still be seen, but the weather was a bit damp and chilly. However, no horrible crowds and traffic was moving (believe me, Hwy 76 can be a parking lot). I generally avoid…Read More
On our last trip to Branson, we went in October. Fall foliage could still be seen, but the weather was a bit damp and chilly. However, no horrible crowds and traffic was moving (believe me, Hwy 76 can be a parking lot). I generally avoid Hwy 76 by taking the many side roads built over the years; maps can be found just about everywhere (hotels, outlet malls, etc.; plus, they have color-coded routes to make it even easier).
I highly recommend off-season in Branson; although water skiing, outdoor swimming, or white-water is out, you will have no problem booking the entertainment show of your choice. This trip, we rode the "Ducks": something we have never done before, but the entire family enjoyed it! My 11-year-old daughter even drove! The scenery from the duck trip was great too. We saw the La Cirque show and were surprised at how much we enjoyed it! Try to get seats in front (center in front of stage).
Another plus was many of the shows were already decked out for the holidays, and the kids enjoyed the Christmas lights on Hwy 76 at night. We stayed at the Marriott Horizons Vacation Club (a condo resort, but rooms can be rented nightly). Beds are extremely comfortable, decor well-done, condition very clean. Horizons is considered luxury but don't be decieved by the term "villas" rooms are in buildings and I recommend getting the two-bedroom; otherwise, there's not much room. Our room was tight with the TV/mini-kitchen right there at the foot of the bed (not appealing). Our bath was was nice but only had a shower. A washer and dryer are provided for self-service. They have an extensive outdoor area with grills and a very nice pool area (closed at our visit) but a wonderful indoor pool and hot jet spa.
There's a play area for kids, but it's only open until 5pm; we were out during the day and didn't get to use it. No on-site dining or groceries, but Krispy Kreme, Denny's, fast food for breakfast, etc., were not far away. Branson's dining choices have expanded greatly to include something for everyone. We recommend the Pirate Cove Mini Golf (walking distance) for entertaining kids. It was much easier and far less rush and hassle visiting Branson in Fall. Overall, late fall is a great time to go to Branson.
Written by night_talk on 22 Aug, 2005
In all my years of traveling to Branson, I had no idea that it would be a shopping place. Well, enter the outlet malls. Some are good and some… well, you decide.
Tanger Outlet Malls – There are lots of name-brand clothing stores, and many stores…Read More
In all my years of traveling to Branson, I had no idea that it would be a shopping place. Well, enter the outlet malls. Some are good and some… well, you decide.
Tanger Outlet Malls – There are lots of name-brand clothing stores, and many stores cater to women’s clothes or shoes. There is an Old Navy and many more. There are a couple of jewelry stores that did not impress me at all. There is not much to speak of for kids, except a kid’s clothing store and Disney store. There is a B Dalton book outlet. For the guys, there is a Bose stereo store and Coleman camping store. I will say the Coleman store has had some great deals on camping tents. The Bose store is nothing but expensive, but they do have a really neat Bose experience demo and tour. For all the ladies, nothing is left out. My wife has found deals on shoes and clothes in many of the locations. The place I have spent a lot of money in is the Black & Decker store. They have anything Black & Decker, from toasters to weed-eaters. They carry a lot of factory recons, so you might get a steal. Before you go to any of these places, know the prices in your home town. We have found some things priced as a factory recon or whatever, and it was the same price as at the new Wal-Mart. The same applies at the kitchen stores and such.
Red Roof or Factory Merchants - This is not a bad shopping area, but don't believe the signs. They advertise as having a bunch of stores, something like 90 or so, but that is if you count all the doors, and some stores take up more than one and a lot of them are vacant. Here you will find an excellent toy store (buy early for Xmas). This store is notorious for many sales, and they get new stuff all the time. They also keep a stock of Diecast collectibles, so check it out. They have a couple of CD and DVD stores that are okay. Again, watch the prices. I think the kitchen stores are better here than Tanger. They have a few other clothing and shoe stores. There is also a tool store with prices that are not that great. Nothing is really a name-brand store like at Tanger. Chicago Cutlery is advertised around town a lot, and they are here. If you want a knife, this is the place, but, again, the prices are sneaky.
Factory Shops at Branson Meadows - This place has one really good store, and the rest you will have to see for yourself. I buy clothing in Branson, and I usually buy it at one place - here at the Vanity Fair store. Yes, they have guy's clothes here, and they are priced very well. Everything is half what it is marked, and then they are marking some of it down further. Some of this stuff has imperfections, but this is a great deal. I get Nautica clothes priced really low. If you are a NASCAR fan, they have lots of authentic Chase licensed clothing, jackets, and hats. They have some ladies and kids clothing as well, but the men’s clothes make up about half the store. This mall has a pet store, tool store, and mountain man store. There are a few other shops, but a lot are vacant. Don't miss this mall, though, because you may be missing the best deal.
Written by night_talk on 18 Aug, 2005
This is a something you want to see at least once. I have seen it seven times. This is much more than a theater. The whole ranch/farm is built around the evening show. You can take tours of the area during the day, and they…Read More
This is a something you want to see at least once. I have seen it seven times. This is much more than a theater. The whole ranch/farm is built around the evening show. You can take tours of the area during the day, and they have a cafeteria and other places to eat. When you arrive for the show in the evening, you need to come a little early. You are picked up by a tram and taken down in the valley to the amphitheater. It is very large, and before the show, they demonstrate different things. The blacksmith shop is real, and they really are hammering out metal on the anvil. There are two different times that you get to come onstage if you like during the performance. If you square dance, you get to dance to some bluegrass music and hang with the actors during a celebration in the show. The other time is to help put out a fire, and you pass real buckets of water to help.
The show is put together with top-notch sound and lighting, and you will not be disappointed. The show is for the whole family, although small children may or may not understand the meaning of the whole show, but it is easy to follow, and they always keep the show going and alive. You have everything, from love to mystery and a legendary ghost that turns out not to be a ghost at all. Keep in mind that this is from the 1800s and there is moonshine, a fight scene gun shots, and a death. The first time I saw it, I was 11 or so. After the show, you are taken by tram back to your parking area.
I almost forgot: At Christmas, the whole place comes alive. They have a drive-through light display that covers a couple of miles or so. There is a cost to get through, but it is nominal. They set up many different scenes. Also, they have inspiration point. This is a tower that is a few hundred feet tall. You are able to go up in that all times of the year. At Christmas, it looks like a giant Christmas tree. If you pay to see the lights, your admission to the tower is free. Like I said, you need to see this at least once.
Written by travel_mom on 15 Apr, 2004
Let me start by saying that I'm a working mother of two boys ages 7 and 4, and my husband and I do not make a huge salary, but we think it's important to do things as a family, therefore we like to take a…Read More
Let me start by saying that I'm a working mother of two boys ages 7 and 4, and my husband and I do not make a huge salary, but we think it's important to do things as a family, therefore we like to take a couple of small vacations a year. Branson is a destination that can be visited by a family with a tight budget. My friends and family call me the “coupon queen” and say I should open my own travel agency to give travel tips.
When we decide we are going somewhere in particular, I scour the internet for travel guides and coupons. Review sites such as this one, Tripadvisor, and Virtualtourist are great for getting tips on what activities and accommodations are not expensive and which ones not to waste your money on. There are several things in Branson that are either free or very inexpensive, such as The Stone Hill Winery Tour (free), the Shepherd of the Hills Hatchery (free), The Dewey Short Visitor Center (free), Predator World, an indoor zoo ($6/adult - $5/child, coupons available), The Tracks Family Fun Parks with the Go-Card (half-price tickets), and if you buy a season pass to Silver Dollar City in Jan. or Feb. you get a Bring a Friend Free Certificate for each pass bought. The cost of one season pass is less than the cost of two 1-day admissions to the park. You can only use the BAF certificates certain times of the year, so plan your trip to accommodate. You also get 10% off meals over $3.50 in the park when you are a season pass holder, this really comes in handy when you have kids wanting everything from cotton candy to popcorn to hamburgers and fries.
As far as accommodations go, a lot of people say that they only will stay in a luxury hotel or a condo resort. Why? If you’re just on a weekend trip, you will only be there to sleep, so why spend all the extra money? A couple places we've stayed on short trips were the Caprice Motor Inn and the Hillbilly Inn. I would recommend either. They have clean rooms and the rates are not too high. The Caprice also has an indoor pool. When we are staying for an extended time, we do like to stay somewhere that has a kitchen so we can cook some meals to save money, but it doesn't have to be a luxury high-priced condo resort. Places like the Tribesman Resort have nice little cottages and apartments that fit the bill.
Speaking of meals, Branson offers a huge variety of restaurants, from fine dining to buffets galore. Buffets are the way to go for families with small children. They can pick what they want to eat and most places either don't charge for children 4 and under or charge very little. Our favorite buffet is the Golden Corral on the Shepherd of the Hills Expressway, but this place gets really packed with tour buses around standard eating times. I would recommend going during off hours, but definitely go at least once - it is wonderful.
Oh yeah, with the Go-Card for the Tracks, you can also get discounts around town, and Golden Corral is one place - I think it's 10% or 15% off breakfast and lunch. Usually for breakfast we just take cereal and donuts and eat in the room, then eat a pretty big lunch, then a small dinner. This saves money too, because dinner prices are usually higher than lunch.
You don’t have to have or spend a lot of money to have a nice vacation and make lasting memories for your family. When I was younger, our family always took vacations or even day trips, and those are some of the best memories I have.
Written by Agene on 08 Nov, 2003
Our arrival was as timely as the beautiful fall foliage. This is our favorite time in the Missouri Ozark mountains, when time seems to stand still. The leisurely pace, set by residents, is gratefully assumed by visitors. We are as hungry for…Read More
Our arrival was as timely as the beautiful fall foliage. This is our favorite time in the Missouri Ozark mountains, when time seems to stand still. The leisurely pace, set by residents, is gratefully assumed by visitors. We are as hungry for a simple life as we are for a home-cooked meal. Local residents going about their errands and visiting are intermingled with an assortment of sightseeing tourists. While we are quite content with the cabin and its fireplace, replete with a tinder of wood, we venture out as the mood allows. Woodland walks, browsing the quaint shops, and taste-pleasing cuisine fill our days. While a vast array of entertainment is available throughout the day and evening, we choose to enjoy the solitude and take the roads less traveled. Adventures lead us through surprising twists and turns as we make discoveries about the area and ourselves. Much like the ever-changing scenery, foliage ablaze with the colors of life, our lives continue to be molded by the beauty we see and those we choose to share it with. Close
Written by kstraveler on 27 Dec, 2003
We used the last of our 2003 Fairfield points to visit Branson during our December 21, 2003 wedding anniversary. We had never stayed at Fairfield at the Falls and wanted to stay there this time. We were very pleased with the unit we…Read More
We used the last of our 2003 Fairfield points to visit Branson during our December 21, 2003 wedding anniversary. We had never stayed at Fairfield at the Falls and wanted to stay there this time. We were very pleased with the unit we were assigned and found it to be just as well decorated and nice as Fairfield at the Meadows. It is also located closer to the shows, had they been operating. Since there were no shows, we attended Fairfield's Wine and Cheese Party and then stayed to play Bingo. The food was good and a wonderful singer provided entertainment for us during the party. She sang a lot of the oldies and then sang Christmas songs. It was a fun time for everyone there. I got a lucky card when we played Bingo and won the first Bingo. My prize was two bottles of California wine and a special dark chocolate & carmel covered apple.
The next day we shopped at the outlet stores for clothes for our grandchildren. We also found a store that had a number of music CDs that we had been searching for. We then stored our purchases in our SUV and did something we haven't done for a long while-- we attended a movie. We even managed to pick one that we both really liked.
Our trip was quieter and different from our trip in November to see the Christmas shows, but since quiet time with no traffic is not often found in Branson, it made our trip more special.