Branson: Our Favorite Parts...

We began the day with a stroll. Adjacent to our campsite is the Table Rock Lakeshore Trail which runs along the shore of Table Rock Lake. There are glades and dry woodlands on the upper side of the trail with oaks, more than 200 years old. Bald eagles, loons and ospreys are commonly seen.


The trail led to the Dewey Short Visitor's Center, near Table Rock Dam. We began our explore by watching an informational movie that told all about the dam's construction (built on the White River due to frequent and devastating flooding). The center also includes a state-of-the-art interactive map of Table Rock Lake, artistic wall murals, a replica of an Ozarks bluff complete with local flora and fauna, a Native American artifact exhibit, Ozarks dioramas, and an expansive cut-away model revealing the inner workings of a hydroelectric dam. It definitely made us take a closer look at our environment.
Our next stop was at the Shepherd of the Hills Fish Hatchery, the largest trout-rearing facility operated by the Missouri Department of Conservation.
The Hatchery produces between 350,000 and 400,000 pounds of trout each year. Both rainbow and brown trout are raised here.

Our final stop was the neighboring town of Hollister, a tourist destination before Branson. Back in 1906, Hollister was literally the end of the line. The railroad tracks stopped here for visitors to enjoy the Ozarks hills and waters.
Knowing the railroad was coming, officials supported a local's vision of an English-style resort town and began building a half-timber-style depot. Other business joined in the theme and the main street eventually became "Downing Street".
Seeing wildflowers still in bloom, learning history about various places and discovering a new town... these are our favorite parts of Branson, Missouri.

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