Branson is a one-of-a-kind family vacation destination — and an incredible value — nestled in the lakeside beauty of the Ozark Mountains with live performance theaters, three pristine lakes (Table Rock, Lake Taneycomo, and Bull Shoals), an international award-winning theme park (Silver Dollar City), dozens of attractions and museums, a Historic Downtown district, a Town Center-style shopping complex (Branson Landing), a full range of dining options, and a host of hotels, motels, resorts, RV parks, campgrounds, and meeting and conference facilities.
1. ) What is your destination most known for?
Live Entertainment, Outdoor Adventure, and Family Fun!
2.) During this time, how can we enjoy your destination?
We may be in the midst of harvest season, but the countdown to Christmas is ON in Branson, Missouri. Each year as the trick-or-treaters arrive home and the porch lights dim on Halloween night, the Ozark Mountain destination begins its impressively speedy transformation into one of America’s most Christmassy towns.
November kicks off a spectacular two-month Christmas celebration filled with lights, music, and joy. A Christmas destination unto itself, Branson’s lineup of Christmas events is truly something to behold, with celebrations (and lights) at literally every turn. Here are some of the most magical ways to take in Christmas in Branson:
With more than 1,500 Christmas trees throughout the destination, Branson has been nicknamed “America’s Christmas Tree City” since 2016. This year, the Branson Christmas Coalition will unveil “Be The Light,” a community Christmas tree adorned with nearly 10,000 genuine cut crystals and more than 20,000 lights. Donated by Branson Centennial Museum and Aquarium at the Boardwalk, the Austrian crystals were originally part of a magnificent chandelier that hung in the theatre lobby of The Grand Palace in Branson (which has since transformed into the aforementioned aquarium). Located in the heart of Branson’s Entertainment District, in the same complex as the Branson Ferris Wheel and a seasonal Holidays on Ice Skating Rink, the 39-foot-tall “Be The Light” tree will quite literally serve as a shining beacon of what makes Branson such a special place to visit. Both the community tree and skating rink are set to open in early November.
Silver Dollar City’s An Old Time Christmas
This 1880s-style park’s “An Old Time Christmas” event features the largest concentration of lights in Branson … 6.5 million to be exact! Between November 6 and December 30, visitors can stroll among the incredible displays of twinkling lights while enjoying live holiday shows daily, including the new “Home for Christmas” Broadway-style production. Everything, including the park’s rides and attractions, is decked out for the holiday season, too. A fan favorite is the Frisco Silver Dollar Sing-Along Steam Train, which takes passengers on a 20-minute musical journey complete with the story of Jesus’s birth. This year, children will be invited to share their wishes with Santa in a festive, socially distanced setting at “Santa’s Cottage.” Each evening Rudolph’s Holly Jolly™ Christmas Light Parade, led by the most famous reindeer of all, winds its way through the streets of Silver Dollar City (twice each night).
From November 6 through December 31, guests at Big Cedar Lodge are invited to come “Home for the Holidays” to enjoy festivities including ice skating, hot cocoa by the fire, a holiday scavenger hunt, Santa visits, and more. Here, you can take in more than one million lights on a tractor-led “Holiday Light Tour.” Throughout December, Chateau on the Lake Resort, Branson’s modern-day “Castle in the Ozarks,” features such activities as caroling by the fire, storytime, holiday movies, and more. It’s also home to an amazing candy village made by the Chateau’s culinary team and displayed in the hotel’s lobby.
3.) What hidden gem should not be missed when visiting your destination?
Take in any of the 100 live shows at 36 theatres and enjoy rock, pop, country, Broadway, gospel, magic, and patriotic entertainment with state-of-the-art productions the entire family can enjoy
4.) What’s one feature that can’t be missed when visiting your website?
Check out the blogs that let you know what’s happening and when with some of the behind-the-scenes looks and tips to make your visit to Branson even more fun.
5.) How did you hear about NATJA, why did you join?
Truly, it was the journalists that spoke so highly about the organization and then meeting the wonderful team that works very hard and makes us all feel like we’re #1 on their list!
6.) Is there anything else you feel travel media should know about your destination?
Branson has been in the top 20 Best US Destinations for more than a decade. Pretty cool for a town of 12,000 in the Ozark Mountains.