If you’re visiting the Branson area and want to get a better taste of what southwest Missouri has to offer, take a daytrip to Springfield and experience some of the rich Ozark heritage that resides in the area.
Located south of Springfield in nearby Republic, the Hulston Library at Wilson’s Creek National Battlefield is open year-round for visitors to peruse the 6,000+ volumes collected there. With government records, books, diaries, maps, and journals, the library is an excellent source for researchers, genealogists, and anyone else who is curious about the defining event at Wilson’s Creek and how it affected the war. Wilson’s Creek National Battlefield is located at 6424 West Farm Road 182, Republic, Mo. and is free for visitors. For more information about this historical site, visit wilsonscreek.com or nps.gov/wicr.
For a kid-friendly adventure, visit Springfield’s Dickerson Park Zoo. Over 340 animals live in the zoo, including elephants, hippos, a variety of exotic birds, and many more. The zoo is open daily from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. from April to September, and from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily from October to March. Tickets for adults and teens are $9; children (age 3-12) and seniors (age 60+) are $6. Children 2 years of age and younger are free. Dickerson Park Zoo is located at 1401 West Norton Road, Springfield, Mo.
If you’re looking to have a little fun that’s just for the grown-ups, visit one of Springfield’s favorite breweries. Mother’s Brewing Company creates three year-round craft beers as well as some seasonal varieties. Towhead, Lil’ Helper, and Three Blind Mice make up the year-round line-up, and Sandy, Old School, Winter Grind, and Spring Batch make up the seasonal brews. Located at 215 South Grant in Springfield, Mother’s Tasting Room is open Wednesdays and Thursdays from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m., Fridays from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m., and Saturdays from 1 p.m. to 7 p.m. Stop by and sample some of Mother’s best brews, and even take a tour of the brewery.
For the art enthusiast, Springfield is home to Springfield Hot Glass Studio. Open Tuesday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. The Bloodworths work hard in their studio, and have glassblowing demonstrations every day they’re open. The artists are eager to work with you to create one-of-a-kind glass pieces, and even offer glassblowing classes. Glass pieces are available for purchase online at www.springfieldhotglass.com. For more information about Springfield Hot Glass, visit their website or call 417-868-8181.
If you’d prefer a day of relaxation in Springfield, take a drive to the area’s best day spa – Grove Spa. The professionals at Grove Spa are focused on helping you refresh your mind, body, and spirit. The spa offers massages, body treatments, facials and peels, waxing and tinting, nail treatments, and medi spa services. A day out with the girls is a perfect reason to visit Grove Spa for some pampering. For more information about Grove’s services, visit www.grovespa.com or call 417-881-8887.
No matter what time of year or weather, you can take a daytrip to Springfield during your Branson vacation. Enjoy a family outing at the zoo, a brewery tour, or a day of pampering without having to go far from the Live Music Capital.