Branson Trip 2019

Diary of Roger and Linda's Branson trip- November 2019

110319 We rented a car from National Car Rental to get to the San Diego airport this morning for our trip to Branson. I was able to pick any car I wanted on the lot, so I picked Nissan Armada which was an awesome vehicle. We got up early for our American flights to Springfield, Missouri. We did not get up early enough as we were unable to check our bags because we were less than 45 minutes before our flight time. We were automatically cancelled, and had to see an American attended who looked for new flights. Fortunately he found flights only an hour later which cost us only $75 more per person and we only arrived 1/2 hour later from our original flight bookings. I did loose the money which I had spent for upgrading seats on the original flights. What a bummer - the first flight I have missed in 35 years. I will never cut it this close again. I was unaware of the 45 minute rule. All went well on our rebooked flights to Dallas and Springfield Missouri. Mike, Charlene’s husband picked us up and drove us to the time share condo in Branson. Charlene cooked us a spicy sour kraut concoction with polish kielbasa for dinner. We watched TV a bit and then retired to our attached condo.


110419 Slept well in our comfortable bed and got up for breakfast; a raisin bagel and a broccoli egg quiche cooked by Charlene. We then drove to Branson Landing - a shopping and restaurant area on the Branson River. After a couple hours of hard core shopping by Charlene we walked about a mile to the Fish House restaurant for lunch. I had dined there on previous trips and the food was good. I had deep fried walleye, something one will not find on west coast. The corn bread baked in a cast iron fry pan with honey and butter was excellent. Then more shopping at the bass pro shop and another newly built shopping mall. We then watched a water fountain light and fire show on the river. Finally after 2 miles walking, we arrived at the car and returned back to the condo. Charlene made us salad and spaghetti for dinner. I also had a glass of DECOY cabernet wine purchased from of all places Wall Mart!


110519 We had breakfast at the condo and then picked up our theater tickets for a show this afternoon. Next we visited another shopping strip mall called Grand Village, where Charlene did some more serious shopping. It was lunch time and Mike was hungry. We found a highly rated place called the pastry cafe that had lunch and it was excellent. For desert Charlene ordered a coconut cake which we all split and it was just out standing. YUM YUM. We then headed for a theater to see the Petersen’s, a Blue Grass group and currently the number one rated group in Branson. We were in the back row of the theater but the seats were fine, because the theater was so small. The group sang blue grass, country, and a bit of gospel. One of the performers a good looking blond was an excellent singer and had placed high on the “VOICE” TV series. We dined at Linda’s choice tonight, at the “Cracker Barrel”!


110619 Bad night for both Linda and me. We both claim that the others snoring kept us awake most of the night. It rained last night and was looking like it might rain again. Had breakfast and then ventured out for a walk around the beautiful grounds of the condo complex. Got back with out getting drenched. The Winter’s then went out for a shopping excursion on their own before we attended “The Heygood band” show at 2:00 pm. This group of 6 who have been performing in Branson for 15 years were really talented and put on a high energy performance with all kinds of music, creative lighting, and highly creative choreographing. The second half was all Christmas related music of all styles. It was amazing how many instruments the group could play. The only girl in the group did a harpsichord piece of music that was just so awesome. After the show we drove out to the College of the Ozarks to have dinner and visit their main school entrance building which contained the student run restaurant, several theaters, and several shops containing products for sale which are all made by the students. This is religious school with free tuition for financially challenged students who can pass the entrance exams. All the students must work during their college attendance. The restaurant food was generally quite good and had high ratings on the web. No wine was served - a bummer. The ice creams made by the students were awesome.


110719 We had eggs, bacon, and bagels for breakfast this morning. We did a half hour walk around the time share condos after breakfast. At 2 pm we drove to the large Welk theater to see our 3rd show of the trip the “Million Dollar Quartet”. This show was about a jam session including Elvis, Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis, and Carl Perkins during the end of their contracts with Sun Record studios. The music played was all their hit songs and the impersonators where really good. The Jerry Lee Lewis impersonator was best and more talented than Jerry Lee Lewis him self. The sound system in this large theater was really high quality, sounding great even to me with my hearing aids on. After the show we drove out for dinner at the Chateau on the Lake, one of the largest and best hotels in the area. I was finally able to purchase some good wine with dinner. Many of the restaurants in this bible belt area served no alcohol. We had a nice pleasant dinner with a nice sunset view over looking a huge lake up stream of the Branson river dam. Returned via car to our condo negotiating rain and fog.


110819 Slept late and got up around 8:30am for bagels and coffee. At 11:00 am we went to pick up my Enterprise car rental for our 1.5 hour trip to the Springfield airport tomorrow morning. The cost was $40 for 1 day plus $100 for drop fee at airport. We did not want to risk using a pick up cab service after missing our flight from San Diego at the beginning of our trip. We then drove to the “Silver Dollar City” theme park to spend the rest of day. The traffic going into this huge theme park was really heavy. Here is the web site for this huge fun park: We arrived around 2:00pm and parked in the free parking, then taking a free open shuttle to the entrance. I some how lost my electronic ticket on my iphone and had to go to customer service, who found a record of the ticket sale and gave us 2 tickets to get in. It was really cold (high 30’s) in the shade. The park has a beautiful outdoor setting among the trees and small Ozark mountains. The autumn colors were awesome. It had lots of rides mostly for smaller kids, dining areas with really good food not too expensive. The main attractions for older people like me is the beautiful grounds and extensive seasonal decorations that are put up for each season. The number one attraction however is the free musical shows that are around the park. The music is mostly blue grass, gospel, and old classics type music. The quality is quite good. The bad part is that the good and longer shows are quite crowded with long lines. We did several short shows and only one long show a classic Christmas time old live play called “Its a Wonderful Life”. The dancing and choreography was excellent. It was indoors and heated in a huge well equipped comfortable modern theater. It was dark outside now and the Christmas lighting decorations were awesome. I did several photos and short videos of the beautiful lighted Christmas scenes. We were all freezing now in this high 30’s tundra like weather. Went to the exit and got on an enclosed bus for a ride down to free parking. The crowd control was actually quite good at this huge theme park. We were now very hungry and drove to the 1950’s typezztt “Mel’s Hard Luck Dinner”. Basic good food mostly sandwiches and excellent huge malts served in the steel mixer containers. The main attraction however at this restaurant is the singing waiters and waitress’s. The service is great and all waiters must be able to sing. Mostly 50’s music was offered. The talent is quite good and several of the waiters have been on the “Voice” tv show. Had a great time and returned home to watch the The Shark Tank on tv which is one of Mike and Charlene’s favorite shows.


110919 We left about 8:00 am in the morning and drove to Springfield Missouri Airport for our American Airline flights to San Diego via stop over at Dallas. The drive in the rental car was pretty and very pleasant. Check in at this small airport was easy and a pleasure compared to other big airports. We arrived home on time, took a cab home, and picked up Charlie dog by 4:00pm. All and all a very pleasant relaxing laid back trip. As a side note Linda received a phone message when we got home - “Linda’s checkbook and credit card had been found laying on the ground just outside of the Kringles Christmas Store. She returned call and they are going to send it to San Diego for her. There is virtually no crime in Branson. She picked a good place to loose it.

Last updated on November 22, 2019