All Posts Tagged: Veterans Homecoming Week
Branson is home to America’s largest annual celebration honoring America’s veterans and active military servicemen and women of all service branches.
Every year, thousands of veterans and active military personnel unite in Branson where the entire community participates in giving back to those who serve. With the core value of patriotism supporting the foundation of the municipal Community Plan 2030, visitors find a variety of exhibits throughout the city demonstrating our commitment to honor those who serve and protect our homeland.
The annual Veterans Week celebration in Branson draws thousands of veterans where they participate in a multitude of events, reunions, parades and special recognition ceremonies across the Ozarks. From the Veteran’s Memorial Gardens where the City of Branson in partnership with Silver Dollar City and memorial founder Ben Kimmel placed a 12-man military statue to demonstrate our gratitude to those who fought for our freedom in Vietnam, to the newly completed ‘Liberty Plaza’ city park in Historic Downtown Branson that pays tribute to all military branches throughout its landscape; the Missouri Veterans Memorial located on the campus of College of the Ozarks to the Veterans Memorial Museum that proudly displays more than 2,000 artifacts dating back to WW1 along with its newest exhibit – the very Huey UH-1C Huey Gunship (endearingly named ‘The Bandit’ by its pilot) that was flown with the 118th Thunderbirds during Vietnam – and displays more than 2,000 artifacts and combat icons dating back to World War 1; or the demonstration of American pride wherein Veterans are openly recognized and saluted by entertainers and audiences throughout the entertainment district and at special flag-raising ceremonies at Silver Dollar City Attractions, to the gathering of thousands of spectators and participants during the Veterans Day Parade held every November 11 at 11:00AM.
According to Tom Newman, Chief Operating Officer of Summer Winds Resorts, LLC, “It is the mutual duty, honor and privilege of our city to maintain awareness of the courage and bravery of America’s defenders – our stewards of freedom. We are committed to continuing to recognize those who gave all, and those who place their lives on the line to protect the rights we enjoy as American citizens.” Beginning November 5 and running through November 11, our Veterans and active military personnel will once again have the opportunity to participate in a multitude of events designed especially to honor the work of these heroes. Ballparks of America is the new home of the annual Veterans Village where our military guests will enjoy the outpouring of Ozark Mountain hospitality including food, shopping, reunions and special ceremonies in their honor where Branson residents and businesses serve those who currently serve or have served our great country. Literally everywhere you go in Branson, you will find that citizens of Branson are dedicated to encourage and foster patriotism and provide recognition to all Veterans for their courage and willingness to serve.
We’ve compiled a schedule of events taking place across the community and invite all visitors to participate. Stormy Point Village and Choose Branson continue to also do their part to honor our Veterans with special discounts and events which can be found on Facebook at Facebook.com/StormyPointVillage and Facebook.com/Choose.Branson. Check back often as new events and stories covering Veterans Week 2017 will be updated regularly!
VETERANS WEEK 2017 (see entire schedule of events here)
Fourth Annual Trout Tournament (October 28)
Located at Scotty’s Trout Dock & Marina http://www.scottystroutdock.com/, grab a buddy and get your lines in the water. The tournament, which is sponsored by the Vietnam Veterans of America, will have cash prizes for the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place teams.
Vets for Vets Celebration (November 5)
This free event is at the Mansion Theatre located at 189 Expressway Lane. It is a special 2 pm show where no ticket it required. Donations are appreciated.
Opening Ceremony of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall (November 6)
This ceremony, which begins at 10 am, will make a half-scale replica of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial available to the public. The wall will be located at the Welk Resort during the Homecoming Celebration and will include more than 58,000 names.
Vietnam Era Reunion (November 6)
The Clay Cooper Theater will host this special reunion event. Tickets for the 10 am Hot Rods and High Heels Show will reserve a spot for lunch and an afternoon show as well.
Flag Raising and Wreath Laying Ceremony (November 10)
The College of the Ozarks will host a special Flag Raising and Wreath Laying Ceremony near the Williams Memorial Chapel at sunrise.
Veterans Day Parade (November 11)
The parade through the heart of downtown Branson will begin at 11 am. Make sure to show up early and find a good spot. Organizations are welcome to participate in the event, please contact the Vietnam Veterans of America Chapter 913 to get set up.
We hope to see you in Branson during Veterans Week. While you are here make sure to say thank you and shake the hand of those who served to protect this great country.
By: Michael Ayo
Fall and winter are absolutely beautiful in Branson. Between the fall colors and the Christmas lights, your senses will be overwhelmed with beauty as you drive through town. Whether you are planning a vacation in November or December, there are a number of fantastic activities and festivities to experience. So much so that it is hard to narrow it down, but Choose Branson did its best.
10. Adoration Parade, Dec. 4
The 68th annual Adoration Parade will take place through downtown Branson on Sunday, Dec. 4. It starts with the annual lighting of the area’s largest nativity scene then the parade follows through town. On this night of celebration, no organization is highlighted and nothing is promoted, it’s just some good, old-fashioned Christmas festivities.
9. Lazy Magnolia Carriage Company
There is no shortage of Christmas lights throughout the city of Branson, and there is no better way to view them than from a horse-drawn carriage. The Lazy Magnolia Carriage Company operates out of downtown Branson and gives you a beautiful and elegant carriage ride through town, making it a great activity for the holiday season.
8. Branson Landing
The Branson Landing is absolutely stunning during the holiday season. Festive decorations line the boardwalk and a 50-foot Christmas tree stands tall in the Landing’s town square. When you make a trip to the Landing, you can take in the beauty of Lake Taneycomo, view the holiday decorations and visit Santa Claus at Bass Pro Shops.
7. Ozark Mountain Christmas Lights and Village
This festive village is located off Buena Vista Road in Branson, and features 200 displays and over 1 million Christmas lights. Paired with the light displays are holiday-themed crafts available for purchase along with homemade fudge, kettle corn, hot chocolate and s’mores. Once you have seen the lights and sampled the holiday snacks, view the life-size nativity scene and be sure to take the kids to go see Santa.
6. Holiday Shopping
Branson is a shopping haven, and it is made even better during the holiday season. Malls such as the Branson Landing and Tanger Outlets have impeccable deals during the holidays, or if you want something directly catered toward Christmas, check out Kringles Christmas Store at the Grand Village Shops. Kringles is the largest Christmas store in the state of Missouri, and features an incredible collection of Christmas decorations including 125 designer-decorated themed trees.
5. Shepherd of the Hills
The Shepherd of the Hills Homestead turns into a Christmas wonderland during the holiday season. Instead of the usual “Roundup on the Trail” show, the “Christmas on the Trail” show plays for eager visitors. While you listen to classic holiday music, you will enjoy a chuckwagon dinner like no other complete with maple-smoked turkey breast, a whole-flame roasted ear of corn, cornbread and Dutch-oven cobbler. Once you have seen the show, be sure to visit the Trail of Lights that features two and a half miles of animated displays, three-dimensional characters and multi-colored lights.
4. Polar Express
Throughout the months of November and December, the Branson Scenic Railway transforms into the Polar Express. This holiday-themed train ride takes you on a magical trip through the Ozarks while supplying you with hot cocoa and freshly baked cookies.
3. Veterans Homecoming Week
One holiday that may not be as important as Christmas to most is an incredibly big deal in Branson. Veterans Day is widely celebrated throughout the Ozarks and there is a whole week of events dedicated to it. Branson’s Veterans Homecoming Weekkicks off on Nov. 5 and lasts through Nov. 11. Events include special performances from “Baldknobbers Jamboree,” “Golden Sounds of the Platters” and more. There will also be special ceremonies and activities for veterans in attendance. The week will conclude with the 83rd annual Veterans Day Parade through downtown Branson.
2. Holiday Shows
There are several shows throughout November and December that put on special performances for the holidays. “It” at the Hughes Brothers Theatre puts on a special show for Thanksgiving along with a wonderful Christmas show. Other shows such as Shoji Tabuchi, “Haygoods” and “Dixie Stampede” provide a completely different performance during the holiday season.
1. An Old Time Christmas Festival at Silver Dollar City
Silver Dollar City’s “An Old Time Christmas” has been recognized by USA Today, CNN Travel, The Travel Channel, Good Morning America, AOL Travel, Yahoo! Travel and MSN.com as a top holiday celebration in America. This festival includes 5 million lights, 1,000 decorated trees and a five-story special effects Christmas tree. There are also wonderful Christmas shows inside the park such as “The Living Nativity,” “It’s a Wonderful Life,” “A Dickens’ Christmas Carol” and the Frisco Sing-Along Steam Train. Rudolph’s Holly Jolly Christmas Light Parade marches through the streets twice each evening as well.
Article courtesy of ChooseBranson.com.