Monday, July 18, 2011

Branson: Family Vacation 2011

Pin It My parents were all about road trips and camping when I was a kid.  It was an affordable way for us to enjoy a family vacation each year.  The memories from those trips are priceless.  My husband and I decided that our kids were finally at an age where a long road trip would not only be manageable, but fun. 

After going on and on about several of my childhood trips to the Ozarks and Branson, he actually suggested that we head down there this summer.  A Chicago burbs guy?  IN BRANSON?  It made me nervous. 

Especially after he referenced a scene in The Simpsons about Branson being “like Vegas – if it were run by Ned Flanders.”  Yikes.  Off we went…Hee Hee-Hee Haw Haw Haw.  Andy Williams here we come.

First stop, Meramec Caverns on our way down.  This was a road trip after all and what’s a road trip without random tidbits of Americana?

This was also another place I visited as a child.  The kids really liked it.  Especially when we explained that is was one of Jesse James’ hideouts.  First we had to explain who Jesse James was though.  “Bad guys son, bad guys.”  “Awesome!”

The tour is a bit of a hike, but something they’d never seen before.  Made for awesome pictures too.


Branson itself was a blast.  It’s truly a family friendly place with something for everyone…okay, almost everyone.  You have to be prepared for the corny and just roll with it.

There were restaurants with large chickens…
DSCF4131  DSCF4133

That served chicken.  Great chicken actually.

The Presely’s Country Jubilee show is iconic on the Branson strip and one I had seen several times as a kiddo.

Still hilarious and its nice to see something like this still in America today…a family owned show with four generations still appearing on stage. 

The kids didn’t know what to make of Herkimer and Cecil. 

There were tons of go carts…


A little hiking…


…that ended badly due to a mulch-in-shoe malfunction.

A fish hatchery, a water park and Silver Dollar City where I got one every roller coaster available! 


One note, on Silver Dollar City, it’s built in the mountains so each day was like a hike in the hills, but totally worth it.  The park is covered with huge trees and unlike many other theme parks, it has a TON of shade which is wonderful.

Yes, vacation in Branson of all places was truly a success and full of great memories.  If you live in the Midwest, I highly suggest you check Branson out as an option.

Oh and I’d LOVE to hear from any of you out there with your fave inexpensive family getaways too!  Next summer’s planning will be here before we know it!
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  1. Looks like you guys had a great time!

  2. One of these days I'd love to make my way there for a family getaway. Sounds perfect for us! And look like y'all had a lot of fun!

  3. Ahhhh, we ate at the large chicken restaurant too! Dang girl that would have been awesome to meet you :(

    At least you could have done all the roller coasters with my hubster. I do not do them and my son did manage to ride one but there was a lot of convincing and bribing to even get that to happen.

    Trying to figure out what happened to our camera so hopefully I will post pics by next week!

    Where did you stay? We stayed at the Wilderness cabins. They were so cute!


  4. I live just 30 minutes away from Branson, Mo in Nixa. We love Branson and visting Siver Dollar City. A great place to vacation. My husband is a golfer and works a few hours a week at Thousand Hills Golf course. I have a question on where you purchase your glass magnets and bails to make the pendant necklaces?


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