Branson, Missouri

Branson, Missouri

Infobox Settlement
official_name = Branson, Missouri
settlement_type = City
nickname = Live Entertainment Capital of the World!

imagesize = 250px
image_caption = A typical busy night on "The Strip" (Hwy 76)



mapsize = 250px
map_caption = Location in the state of Missouri

mapsize1 = 250px
map_caption1 = U.S. Census Map
subdivision_type = Country
subdivision_name = United States
subdivision_type1 = State
subdivision_name1 = Missouri
subdivision_type2 = Counties
subdivision_name2 = Taney, Stone
government_type =
leader_title = Mayor
leader_name = Raeanne Presley
area_footnotes =
established_date =
area_magnitude =
area_total_km2 = 42.3
area_land_km2 = 41.9
area_water_km2 = 0.4
population_as_of = 2000
population_note =
population_total = 6050
population_density_km2 = 144.4
timezone = CST
utc_offset = -6
timezone_DST = CDT
utc_offset_DST = -5
area_total_sq_mi = 16.3
area_land_sq_mi = 16.2
area_water_sq_mi = 0.2
elevation_m = 237
elevation_ft = 778
latd = 36 |latm = 38 |lats = 16 |latNS = N
longd = 93 |longm = 15 |longs = 18 |longEW = W
website =
postal_code_type = ZIP codes
postal_code = 65615-65616
area_code = 417
blank_name = FIPS code
blank_info = 29-07966GR|2
blank1_name = GNIS feature ID
blank1_info = 0739970GR|3
footnotes = The Live Entertainment Capital of the World

Branson is a city in Stone and Taney counties in the U.S. state of Missouri. It was named for Rueben Branson, postmaster and operator of a general store in the area in the 1880s. [ [ Branson Travel Guide and Travel Information - Lonely Planet ] ] Branson is a popular destination for vacationers from Missouri and the surrounding states. The population was 6,050 at the 2000 census. The Branson Micropolitan Statistical Area embraces Stone and Taney counties.


In 1882, Rueben Branson opened a general store and post office in the area. Branson was formally incorporated in 1912 and construction of the Powersite Dam nearby on the White River which would form Lake Taneycomo was completed.

In 1894 William Henry Lynch had bought Marvel Cave and had begun charging visitors to see it. Hugo and Mary Herschend bought the cave in 1950 and began hosting square dances in it. The Herschend Family modernized the cave with electricity and cement staircases, and in 1960, the Herschends opened Silver Dollar City which was a recreated frontier town of five shops and a church, and it featured a log cabin with actors playing out the feud between Hatfields and McCoys.

Harold Bell Wright had published his novel about the Ozarks, The Shepherd of the Hills, in 1907. The Old Mill Theater began its first outdoor production based on the novel in 1960. The show still runs today.

1963 saw the completion Table Rock Dam on the White River, which created Table Rock Lake.

The Presley family became the first to move their show to Highway 76 in 1967 (which would become known as the "strip"), and a year later, the Baldknobbers moved their show there as well. This area would eventually grow to more than 50 theaters – most located on Highway 76.

In 1983 Branson began its transformation into a major tourist attraction when the 7,500 seat Swiss Villa Amphitheatre opened in Lampe, Missouri. The theatre, which was later renamed the Black Oak Mountain Amphitheatre before utlimately closing in the early 2000s, proved there was a market for large music gatherings. Ironically, it started out as a venue for rock bands Def Leppard, Lynyrd Skynyrd, REO Speedwagon, Steppenwolf, and Ozzy Osbourne. [ [ Fire damages former concert stage in Stone County - - October 4, 2007] ]

Also in 1983, Roy Clark opened the Roy Clark Celebrity Theatre, becoming the first famous country music star to have his own venue in Branson. Many of performers that have played in Branson, got their first start at that venue. A series of larger theatres opened soon thereafter. In 1987, Box Car Willie became the first entertainer with a permanent schedule in Branson.

In 2007, ground was broken for the $155 million Branson Airport on land formerly belonging to Tennessee Ernie Ford. Scheduled to open in May 2009, it is claimed that it will be the largest privately-owned commercial airport in the United States. The construction which involves flattening several Ozark mountains is said to be the largest earth moving project in Missouri history. Currently the closest commercial airport is Springfield-Branson National Airport 50 miles northwest of Branson. That airport is totally owned by the City of Springfield.


Branson is home to more than fifty theaters, featuring numerous shows and productions.

*Andy Williams Moon River
*Baldknobbers Country
*Bart Rockett
*Branson Showcase
*Branson Variety
*Caravelle Theater
*Circle B
*Country Tonight
*Dick Clark's American Bandstand
*Dixie Stampede
*Grand Country Music Hall
*Grand Palace
*Hamner Barber Theater
*House of Rock
*Imax Complex and Little Opry
*Jim Stafford
*Kirby Von Burch
*Legends Family Theater
*Mansion America
*Moe Bandy
*Music City
*New Shanghai
*Owen's Theater
*Shake It Up Showclub
*Shoji Tabuchi
*Tall Timber Lumberjack
*The Hughes Brothers Celebrity Theater
*The Welk Theater at the Welk Resort
*Yakov Smirnoff

Other Attractions

Branson is also the home for several museums, three lakes, and twelve championship golf courses. Other local attractions include Silver Dollar City, Celebration City, White Water, an IMAX Theater, The Shepherd of the Hills, Mount Pleasant Winery, Stone Hill Winery, Ride The Ducks, and Branson Landing.

The Titanic Museum opened in 2006 and includes artifacts from the wreck of the RMS Titanic. Also on display are models of the ship, a full scale replica of the grand staircase and recreations of various rooms of the ship, in addition to eye-witness accounts of the events that occurred. And there are tiled planks of decks to see what it feels like during the sinking.

Another museum in Branson is the American Presidents Museum, one of only six similar museums in the nation, the American Presidents Museum showcases the lives and Presidency of those that have led the United States. The American Presidents Museum is under the direction of the National Center for Presidential Studies, a private non-profit educational organization.

[ Branson Landing] opened in the summer of 2006 on the Lake Taneycomo waterfront in downtown Branson. The lakefront project includes retail space with Bass Pro Shops and Hudson Belk as anchors in an outdoor shopping mall of over stores and restaurants. The new Branson Convention Center, which is situated between the Landing and Historic Downtown Branson, opened September 7, 2007.

Developers are laying out plans for Pinnacle Falls to be located adjacent to Celebration City off of Highway 76. The first Phase, a $250 million dollar European-themed development, is planned to open in 2010 and will contain year-around attractions including an indoor water park, aquarium, themed restaurants, and shopping.


As of the 2000 censusGR|2, there were 6,050 people, 2,701 households, and 1,661 families residing in the city. The population density was 374.0 people per square mile (144.4/km²). There were 3,366 housing units at an average density of 208.1/sq mi (80.3/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 94.50% White, 0.84% African American, 0.86% Native American, 0.71% Asian, 0.03% Pacific Islander, 1.47% from other races, and 1.59% from two or more races. 4.26% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. There were 2,701 households out of which 24.3% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 48.9% were married couples living together, 9.4% had a female householder with no husband present, and 38.5% were non-families. 31.9% of all households were made up of individuals and 14.1% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.21 and the average family size was 2.76.

In the city the population was spread out with 20.3% under the age of 18, 8.2% from 18 to 24, 24.4% from 25 to 44, 27.0% from 45 to 64, and 20.2% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 43 years. For every 100 females there were 86.7 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 83.2 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $31,997, and the median income for a family was $43,145. Males had a median income of $31,769 versus $21,223 for females. The per capita income for the city was $20,461. 12.1% of the population and 9.7% of families were below the poverty line. 15.6% of those under the age of 18 and 17.0% of those 65 and older were living below the poverty line.

List of Entertainers Associated with Branson

* Ann-Margaret
* Moe Bandy
* Pat Boone
* Boxcar Willie
* Kirby Van Burch
* Captain and Tennille
* Johnny Cash
* June Carter Cash
* Glen Campbell
* Charo
* Petula Clark
* Roy Clark
* John Davidson
* Phyllis Diller
* Barbara Fairchild
* Mickey Gilley
* Robert Goulet
* The Haygoods
* Bill Haley & His Comets
* Dino Kartsonakis
* Gladys Knight
* Cristy Lane
* Lennon Sisters
* Shari Lewis
* Rich Little
* Barbara Mandrell
* Louise Mandrell
* Irlene Mandrell
* Wayne Newton
* Oak Ridge Boys
* Tony Orlando
* Osmond Family
* Charlie Pride
* Kenny Rogers
* Yakov Smirnoff
* Jim Stafford
* Ray Stevens
* Mel Tillis
* Bobby Vinton
* Lawrence Welk
* Andy Williams


External links

* [ Branson Chamber of Commerce]
* [ City of Branson]
* [ Branson TV Station]

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