8 Ways to Celebrate Easter in the Ozarks this Spring

Celebrate Easter in a big way this year with an assortment of family-friendly events in the Ozarks.


3rd Annual Osage Beach Easter Egg Hunt


A fun filled family event including egg hunts for 4 different age groups, local 4-H animal displays, face painters, and bounce houses.

April 15, 2017

11:00 pm – 2:00 pm

Osage Beach City Park
950 Hatchery Road
Osage Beach Missouri 65065

Phone: 573-302-2000



Hollister Easter Egg Hunt


Join us Saturday, April 15, at noon for an Easter Egg Hunt in Hollister!

Bring the children and Easter baskets and buckets! There will be face painting, inflatables, a duck pond, and much more. Festivities can be moved inside in case of rain.

April 15, 2017

Phone: 417-334-3050

Hollister High School Football Field
2112 State Hwy BB Hollister, MO 65672



Easter at Orchards Park


Join Bentonville Parks & Recreation along with Arvest Bank for a fun filled afternoon at Orchards Park! Activities begin at 2:00pm with fun inflatables for the kids as well as several food vendors. At 3:00pm, our egg hunt will begin with over 40,000 eggs. There will be 3 separate egg hunts broken up into age groups for children 12 and under.

April 15, 2017

Begins at 2:00pm

Downtown Activity Center: 215 SW A Street Community Center: 1101 SW Citizens Circle



1:00pm-Children with Special Needs Egg Hunt

2:00pm-Inflatable & Food Vendors

2:30pm-Egg Hunt (Ages 7-12)

3:00pm-Egg Hunt (Ages 4-6)

3:30pm-Egg hunt (Ages 0-3)

Easter Egg Hunt


An exciting annual Easter Egg hunt featuring activities for all ages!

Civic Center

April 14, 2017

10:00 a.m.

West Plains Civic Center
110 St. Louis St.
West Plains, MO


Easter Egg Hunt in the Park


On Easter Sunday the Laurie Easter egg hunt attracts children from tots to teens to find 14,000 eggs “hidden” throughout the fair grounds.

The Easter Bunny always makes an appearance to the delight of everyone.

April 16, 2017

2:00 pm – 3:00 pm

Laurie Fairgrounds
134 N Fairgrounds Road
Laurie MO 65037

Phone: 573-374-8776



Easter 2017

Top of the Rock Easter Brunch Buffet


Join us at Osage Restaurant to experience an unforgettable Easter Brunch. Our Culinary Team will prepare plenty of traditional favorites along with a few surprises. Adults: $46.95; Children (4-12 years): $18.95. Children three and under are complimentary. Offered on Sunday, April 16th from 9:30am-2:00pm.

Reservations required.

April 16, 2017

150 Top of the Rock Rd Ridgedale, MO 65739

Phone: 417-335-2777



Easter Brunch at Chateau on the Lake


At Chateau on the Lake, we love Easter time and have dining specials that will make your festivities extra delightful! Enjoy a leisurely brunch at Chateau Grille from 10:30 am to 3:00 pm to include breakfast items, carved meats, salads, fruits, dessert and much more!

April 15, 2017

415 N State HWY 265 Branson, MO 65616

Phone: 417-334-1161


Easter Cruise on the Landing Princess


Main Street Lake Cruises

Enjoy lunch with a view of Lake Taneycomo! Your Easter meal will include: tossed mandarin orange salad, roasted turkey and baked ham, mashed potatoes & gravy, stuffing, seasonal vegetables, dinner rolls, and dessert. Tea, coffee, soda and water will also be included.

Price is $57.00 + tax (adult or child)

Historic Downtown Branson

April 16, 2017

11:00 pm – 2:00 pm

9 South Boardwalk Branson, MO 65616

Phone: 417-239-3980



5 Art Festivals in the Ozarks You Can’t Miss this Spring


Immerse yourself in a myriad of artistic expression this Spring by exploring vibrant festivals featuring live performances, musicians, traditional artists, and more!

Artsfest on Walnut Street


Featuring 130 Artists From 16 states & Over 80 Performances

Springfield – Missouri

Historic Walnut Street

Recurring daily beginning May 6, 2017 through May 7, 2017

Admission: $5.00 – (Free for children 5 and under)



Artsfest is the largest fine arts festival in southwest Missouri featuring 130 artists from 16 states, over 80 performances, food from some of Springfield’s favorite restaurants, and a kids hands-on area with activities including Chalk-It-Up and the Claymobile, a mobile ceramic arts workshop.



Presented by Walton Arts Center

Fayetteville – Arkansas

May 4, 2017 – May 20, 2017

505 W. Spring St

Fayetteville, AR 72701

Admission: Free and low-cost tickets for all festival family events and performances



Artosphere: Arkansas’ Arts and Nature Festival celebrates artists influenced by nature, who inspire us to live more sustainable lives.

We invite the entire community to join us in the celebration by attending one or all of our free and low-cost family events and performances!

May Festival of the Arts

Eureka Springs – Arkansas

May 1, 2017 – May 31, 2017

Phone: 479-253-7333

Contact: Eureka Springs CAPCdrgd

Eureka Springs, AR 72632



To say that Eureka Springs is a colorful community is an understatement. There’s an overall creative vibe running through our historic arts village driven by more than 350 working artists in all mediums. During the month of May, we show it all off. Our 30th annual May Festival of the Arts is packed with one-of-a-kind art exhibits, demonstrations, performances, culinary arts, free music in the park, and the wildest street party thrown by artists – The White Street Walk.

Art of Wine

Fayetteville – Arkansas

June 8, 2017 – June 10, 2017

Admission: Tickets start at $80

Phone: 479-443-5600

Contact: Walton Arts Center

505 W. Spring St.
Fayetteville, AR 72701


It’s a celebration of the senses! Art of Wine features three days of enticing events with the opportunity to sample some of the world’s finest wines and an array of artfully crafted local cuisine in a unique atmosphere.

40th Annual Old Timers Day Arts & Crafts Festival

Van Buren – Arkansas

May 19, 2017 – May 21, 2017

Admission: Free

Phone: 580-467-6377

704 Main Street
Van Buren, AR 72956



2017 welcomes the 40th Annual Old Timers Day Arts & Crafts Festival featuring hundreds of exhibitors from more than seven states covering six closed-off blocks on Historic Main Street. Carnival, food, and entertainment Friday (7 p.m.), Saturday, and Sunday. Arts & crafts Saturday (9 a.m.-6 p.m.) and Sunday (9 a.m.-5 p.m.) Event will be held rain or shine.



8 Trails in the Ozarks That Will Lead You to Unforgettable Places

From serene ancient mountains to lush oak forests, the Ozarks holds a pristine beauty that you can witness while exploring these trails.

Hawksbill Crag/Whitaker Point Trail

Upper Buffalo Wilderness – Ozark National Forest

Distance: 3 miles roundtrip, 2.5 hours

Difficulty: Easy

Region: Arkansas Ozarks & Boston Mountains

(479) 284-3150

More Info:

Radiant with wildflowers and a waterfall in the spring, and then graced with the crimson and amber foliage of turning maple leaves in the fall, this trail winds through some of the most beautiful scenery in the state.

This region was also featured in the opening scenes of the Disney film Tuck Everlasting.

Pedestal Rocks Scenic Area

Upper Buffalo Wilderness – Ozark National Forest

Distance: 2 miles

Difficulty: Easy

Region: Arkansas Ozarks & Boston Mountains

More Info:

(479) 284-3150

 Visitors can view picturesque rock bluffs, swim in crystal clear streams, and hike wooded hillsides. This scenic area consists of two hiking trails, Pedestal
Rocks and Kings Bluff. Pedestal Rocks is 2.2 -miles and Kings Bluff is 1.7-miles long. Although there are some steep sections, the trails are easy to hike with abundant resting places.

Whispering Pines Trail

Southeast Missouri – Hawn State Park

Distance: 9.75 Miles

Difficulty: Hard

Hawn State Park Website:

More Info:

(573) 883-3603

This trail is arguably the best, most scenic trail in the state. It has a little bit of everything, unusual rock formations, beautiful creeks, old forests, panoramic views, and wildlife.

Whispering Pines Loop Trail is a 9.2 mile loop trail consisting of two loops: the north loop is approximately six miles long and the south loop is approximately 3.75 miles.

The trail provides the opportunity for day hikes of varying lengths or a longer backpacking trip. It meanders through a beautiful mixed hardwood and pine forest, which is home to a variety of animals such as bobcat and wild turkey. Extensive exposures of sandstone and granite can be explored along the banks of Pickle Creek and the River Aux Vases. Mosses and ferns create a luxurious effect on the moist overhangs that occur along the two streams. The entire trail should take no more than 9 hours and 45 minutes to complete although more experienced hikers may complete it in a shorter time.

Sam’s Throne Trail

Upper Buffalo Wilderness – Ozark National Forest

Distance: 2 miles

Difficulty: Moderate

Region: Arkansas Ozarks & Boston Mountains

Sam’s Throne Recreation Area
AR Highway 123
Jasper, AR

More Info:

Sam’s Throne Trail is a 2 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Mt Judea, Arkansas that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Lost Valley Trail

Buffalo National River – Northern Arkansas

Distance: 1.9 miles

Difficulty: Easy-Moderate

Region: Arkansas Ozarks & Boston Mountains

More Info:

Lost Valley Trail leaves the parking area and gently winds up the box canyon passing beneath groves of American beech trees. The trail leads you to an turquoise-blue pool of water with an 8-ft waterfall flowing out of a small opening in the bluff, known as the Natural Bridge. The gem of the hike is Eden Falls. The picturesque Eden Falls cascades 53 ft over towering cliffs offering visitors a firsthand view of what the Ozark Mountains have to offer.

Wildflower and medicinal plant folklore enthusiasts will enjoy the trail immensely as it features a wide variety of species, including bloodroot, crested iris, columbine, mayapple, comfrey and Ozark trillium, just to name a few.

Centerpoint to Goat Trail

Buffalo National River – Ponca, Arkansas

Distance: 6.5 miles

Difficulty: Moderate

More Info:

Breathtaking river bluffs combined with a world-class geologic experience makes this trail unique. This area also features the tallest sheer bluff face found between the Rocky and Appalachian mountains.

The trail’s destination is the Big Bluff overlooking the Buffalo River. It is considered the tallest along the Buffalo, over 500 ft. tall. The side trail that leads to an outcropping on the bluff is called the Goat Trail, which is about 350 ft tall. It is not for children, the weak, or those afraid of heights.

Triple Falls Trail

Buffalo National River Wilderness – Northern Arkansas

Distance: 0.3 miles

Difficulty: Easy

More Info:

Triple Falls is a simple hike along the trail on the north side of the creek that heads west from the parking to the 48 ft. tall falls, arguably the most scenic in Arkansas with this ease of accessibility.

It is a 0.3 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Jasper, Arkansas that features a waterfall and is good for all skill levels. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round.

Glory Hole Waterfall Trail

Ozark National Forest – Northern Arkansas

Distance: 1.8 miles

Difficulty: Moderate

More Info:

Displaying one of the most unique waterfalls in the Ozarks, this trail leads to a hidden gem that has fascinated geologists for decades.

Glory Hole Waterfall Trail is a 1.8 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Deer, Arkansas that features a waterfall. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, and nature trips and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.


Don’t Miss These Beautiful Experiences in 2017

Whether it’s Stargazing in the mountains, ziplining over oak forests, or exploring ancient caverns, the Ozarks presents a plethora of experiences to introduce more excitement into your life.

Every New Year brings a sense of newness into our lives, introducing us to unique elements of life that we have never experienced before. Start 2017 with a fresh start, create precious memories and accomplish personalized goals that encourage compassion, happiness, and peace.

Discover Ancient Caverns

Several million of years ago, shallow seas that covered much of the Ozarks deposited layers of sediments, forming the limestone and dolomite bedrock that dominates the region today. Over time, the dissolving action of water eroded away the sedimentary rock, creating hundreds of cave systems throughout the Ozarks.


Onondaga Cave State Park

7556 Hwy. H
Leasburg, MO 65535-9136

(573) 245-6576

Onondaga Cave is one of America’s most spectacular caves because of the great abundance and quality of its speleothems or deposits. Stalactites, stalagmites, rimstone dams, flowstones, draperies, soda straws and cave coral extensively decorate the cave. Because of this, Onondaga Cave was designated as a National Natural Landmark.

The Vilander Bluff Natural Area located 7 miles northeast of the main body of the park harbors unique natural communities, most notably a dry dolomite cliff with over 200 ancient red cedar trees that range in age from 200 to 500 years.

Old Spanish Treasure Cave

14290 AR-59, Sulphur Springs, AR 72768

(479) 787-6508

Somewhere in the depths of the cave, lies a hidden treasure that, to this day, no one has been able to find.

Legend has it that treasure was buried in the cave by Spanish Conquistadors before they were killed by Native Americans over 350 years ago.

 Neither these maps nor the treasure—estimated today at 40 million dollars—have ever been found.

The cave has never been fully explored, and new territories are charted every year.

Bridal Cave

14290 AR-59, Sulphur Springs, AR 72768

(479) 787-6508

Rated as one of the most scenic caves in America.

Centuries ago, the Osage Native Americans discovered the pristine beauty that lies beneath Thunder Mountain. Local folklore tells of a legendary Native American wedding ceremony held in the cave in the early 1800’s. Today this magnificent natural wonderland is called Bridal Cave. In keeping with the tradition of the Native American legend, the cave can be reserved for a romantic wedding chapel.

Explore Castle Ruins

Imposing architecture and breathtaking scenery combine to make Ha Ha Tonka State Park one of Missouri’s most treasured spots.

Located on the Lake of the Ozarks, the park features the stone ruins of a castle.


The ruins of a man’s manor appear to belong to a bygone fairytale kingdom, but are really the remains of grief and despair.

Wealthy Kansas City businessman Robert Snyder had a dream to construct a European-styled castle right in his beloved Missouri. To this end Snyder purchased 5,000 acres of land, including his very own lake, and began work on the evocative mansion in 1905. The businessman even imported stone masons from Europe to achieve the correct style, but unfortunately Snyder would not live to see his dream house to completion.

In 1906, Snyder was killed in one of Missouri’s first car accidents; however, Snyder’s dream castle would not die with him. After his death, Snyder’s sons continued work on the building and were able to complete the castle. After completing construction, one of his sons took up residence in the huge castle until the family’s money ran out due to land rights lawsuits surrounding the castle’s property.

In 1942, the entire building was utterly destroyed by a fire.

The state purchased the property in the 1970’s and has worked to preserve the crumbled walls of Snyder’s dream home as a feature in their state park.

Beautiful young woman standing in the meadow of violet flowers a

Wander Through Fields of Wildflowers

Immerse yourself in a dreamy landscape blanketed in wildflowers in the Ozarks. As the sun shines between bare winter tree branches, wildflowers resurrect from their slumber. Trek a variety of trails and discover activities including guided wildflower walks, children’s programs, lake and river cruises.


Whispering Pines Trail at Hawn State Park

12096 Park Dr, Ste. Genevieve, MO 63670

(573) 883-3603

Whispering Pines Loop Trail is a 9.2 mile loop trail consisting of two loops: the north loop is approximately six miles long and the south loop is approximately 3.75 miles. It meanders through a beautiful mixed hardwood and pine forest, crossing through streams and over scenic ridges.

This trail is arguably the best, most scenic trail in the state. It has a little bit of everything, unusual rock formations, beautiful creeks, old forests, panoramic views, and wildlife.

“There’s no other park where you’ll see a large population of wild azaleas like you can at Hawn, last year, they bloomed around the second and third week of April. The azaleas are found in the uplands along the Whispering Pines Trail.” – Allison Vaughn

Swimming Deer and Missouri trails at St. Francois State Park

8920 US Highway 67 North
Bonne Terre, MO 63628-3598

(573) 358-2173

Just as outlaws sought refuge from the law during the Civil War, visitors today can seek refuge from everyday life in the beauty of the Pike Run Hills at St. Francois State Park. The forested ridges and hollows of these hills offer visitors a chance for unconfined solitude in a wilderness setting.

Mid-April brings an explosion of phlox and bluebells to the park. “These trails have one of the best bluebells shows in the state, they literally carpet the woodland floor. People come from all over the state to see them.” – Jamie Hubert

Coakley Hollow Trail at Lake of the Ozarks State Park

12096 Park Dr, Ste. Genevieve, MO 63670

(573) 883-3603

Coakley Hollow Trail is a 1 mile lightly trafficked loop trail located near Linn Creek, MO that features beautiful wild flowers. The trail is good for all skill levels and primarily used for hiking.

This self-guiding interpretive trail meanders through one of the most ecologically diverse areas in Lake of the Ozarks State Park. Six different types of natural communities, including dolomite glades, fens, spring-fed streams and several types of woodlands, can be seen.

Go Parasailing

Soar above the emerald blue water of the Lake of the Ozarks!

Enjoy breathtaking bird’s eye views of the Bagnell Dam and Osage River, with Paradise Parasail, Inc. Experienced USCG captains will give you the safest and most adventurous flight on vessels that speed along miles of shoreline.


During the adventure, professional photographers will accompany you on board, capturing every moment which will include 40 to 60 adventure pictures and a Go Pro video from your point of view!


Bagnell Dam Blvd.
Lake Ozark MO 65049


9:00 am – 5 pm

7 days a week


Attend a Festival

Enjoy summer events, street fairs, music festivals, and fireworks by attending a local festival this year!


Artsfest on Walnut Street

Artsfest is the largest fine arts festival in southwest Missouri featuring 130 artists from 16 states, over 80 performances, food from some of Springfield’s favorite restaurants, and a kids hands-on area with activities including Chalk-It-Up and the Claymobile, a mobile ceramic arts workshop.

Recurring daily – May 6, 2017 through May 7, 2017

Historic Walnute Street

Amission: $5 (Free for children 5 and under)

81st Annual Ozark Empire Fair

Join in on the fun with all the great food and fun, carnivals rides, games, concerts and more. For 81 years, the Ozark Empire Fair has been a time for community celebration and 2017 promises to carry on the tradition.

Recurring daily – July 27, 2017 through August 5, 2017

Ozark Empire Fairgrounds

3001 N. Grant Ave. – Springfield, MO 65803

Admission: $8 for adults $4 children

Japanese Fall Festival

Celebrate Springfield’s Sister City – Isesaki, Japan – with artists, performers, martial art demonstrations, special guests, vendors and more!

Recurring daily – September 8, 2017 through September 10, 2017

Mizumoto Japanese Stroll Garden, Nathanael Greene/Close Memorial Park

2400 S. Scenic Ave. – Springfield, MO 65807

(417) 891-1515

milky way at dawn and silhouette of a telescope

Go Stargazing

Since time immemorial, the glittering river of stars called the Milky Way has dominated the night sky, influencing humanity and inspiring the imaginations of thousands.
Now, it has become a faded memory to one-third of humanity and 80% of Americans, according to a new global atlas of light pollution produced by Italian and American scientists.

Many people around the world go their entire lifetime without witnessing a clear night sky. Light pollution–caused by artificial light sources–is one of the most pervasive forms of environmental alteration. It creates a luminous haze that swamps the constellations and stars.
In the Ozarks, the sky has minimal light pollution, creating exceptional conditions for viewing the Milky Way.


Perseids Meteor Shower

July 17 and August 24 (Peaking on August 9-13)

While the skies are lit up several times a year by other meteor showers, the Perseids are widely sought after by astronomers and stargazers. This is because, at its peak, one can see 60 to 100 meteors in an hour from a dark place.

Draconid Meteor Shower

The 2017 Draconid meteor shower is expected to reach its peak on October 8.

Draconids are also known as Giacobinids.

The best time to see the shooting stars from this meteor shower is right before nightfall.

Geminid Meteor Shower

The Geminids are known to be quite prolific, with rates as high as 60 to 120 shooting stars an hour at peak times. This year’s event will be special because sky-watchers will only have to contend with the waning crescent moon until about local midnight. Once the moon sets, the best viewing will be in the predawn hours of December 14—exactly when the shower is predicted to reach its peak performance.

Witness a Solar Eclipse

 On Aug. 21, 2017, people from all over the world will travel to the United States to see the rare and spectacular celestial show — the first total solar eclipse visible from the continental United States in nearly four decades.

For those of us who already live here, but have never seen an eclipse, this is the opportunity of a lifetime – to see the one of the most beautiful occurrences on the planet, and maybe not even have to get on an airplane to experience it!

“Though the rest of the continental U.S. will have at least a 55 percent partial eclipse, it won’t ever get dark there, and eye-protection filters would have to be used at all times even to know that the eclipse is happening. The dramatic effects occur only for those in the path of totality.” – Jay Pasachoff


If you do plan to observe the August 2017 eclipse, remember: never look directly at the sun without proper eye protection, serious and permanent eye damage can result.

“Proper eye protection” includes specially made solar filters, eclipse glasses, or No. 14 welder’s glass.

The Total Solar Eclipse will only be visible in the North Eastern region of the Ozarks, only a partial solar eclipse will be seen throughout the rest of Missouri.

Maps courtesy of / Xavier Jubier / Google Maps /

10 Things to Experience in the Ozarks This Winter

Experience the winter season in the Ozarks, with traditional and delightful holiday events that fill the air with anticipation and excitement. Whether you’re home for the holidays or are traveling, the Ozarks invites you to join the seasonal festivities and spread holiday cheer.

An Old Time Christmas

Silver Dollar City

December 14, 2016-December 30, 2016

399 Silver Dollar City Parkway Branson, MO 65616



Silver Dollar City presents one of the nation’s most acclaimed Christmas festivals hosting a variety of festivities including:

•Rudolph’s Holly Jolly™ Christmas Light Parade, led by the most famous reindeer of all, with musical lighted floats with 200,000 lights accompanied by 33 costumed characters

•Two original musical productions: It’s a Wonderful Life, adapted from the Frank Capra classic, and the acclaimed production A Dickens’ Christmas Carol

•The Christmas on Main Street light & sound show featuring the 5-Story Special Effects Christmas Tree

•5 million lights, holiday shows, a musical Living Nativity, rides, shopping, and dining

Ozark Mountain Christmas Lights & Village

Branson-Springfield Area

December 14, 2016-December 30, 2016

558 Buena Vista Branson, MO 65616




Immerse yourself in thousands of glittering light displays by horse-drawn carriage with your family and friends to celebrate the holiday season. Afterwards, explore the Christmas Village (Thursday – Sunday nights) and experience the beautifully-decorated 6,000 square foot Christmas marquee filled with sweet holiday aromas; sounds of Christmas; The North Pole Express Train ride; “Selfies with Santa”; crafts; Holiday Treats and flavors and so much more!

Over 12 ways to create a memory of a lifetime at the Ozark Mountain Christmas Lights & Village!

Tour includes tuning into a Christmas music station to feel the sounds of Christmas while driving by the displays.

The 12 Memories of Ozark Mountain Christmas Lights & Village

1. New Location: Magical Mile of amazing light displays with music by North Pole Productions

2. Light tour in a Clydesdale horse-drawn carriage or wagon

3. Light tour in a two-seater scooter

4. Photos with the Clydesdale horses

5. North Pole Express: Kids & adults Christmas train ride

6. Animated Life-Size Nativity Scene (Free)

7. Christmas story-telling at a campfire (Free)

8.Family Photos by professional photographer

9. Selfies With Santa (Free)

10. Gourmet Hot Chocolate and Cider

11. Fresh made Kettle corn / Bavarian nuts / Food choices available

12. Hilarious Cacklin’ animated chickens sing Christmas songs (Free)

Springfield Ballet’s The Nutcracker

Landers Theatre

311 E. Walnut Street – Springfield, MO 65807

Admission: $18-$65

(417) 862-1343



 Springfield Ballet is celebrating its 40th anniversary by introducing a brand new design, directed by Roger LaVoie. Immerse yourself in the magic and the excitement as this year’s production features a new set–unveiled for the first time! You and your family will be awed and inspired by the breathtaking new details that will heighten the beloved story of Clara and her Nutcracker Prince. Follow along as they dash from an extravagant Christmas party to a fierce battle with the evil Mouse Queen, then on a magical journey through the Land of Snow and Kingdom of Sweets. Celebrate this holiday tradition with Springfield Ballet and the ones you love!

Hughes Brothers Christmas Show

Hughes Brothers Theatre

December 19, 2016-December 31, 2016

3425 West 76 Country Blvd Branson, MO 65616



Awarded Best Christmas Show 8 years in a row by

USA Today says, “The Hughes Brothers Show owns the title of World’s Largest Performing Family!”

During Nov. and Dec. step back in time as the Hughes Brothers -Marty, Jason, Ryan, Adam & Andy- and their families create a Christmas wonderland filled with the season’s best vocal harmonies, exciting dances, inspiring instrumentals, and of course, the charm that everyone loves about these five multi-talented brothers. The show is filled with festive surprises, extraordinary performances, and treasured family traditions. You’ll see Santa in a new light when he explains the symbols of Christmas in the most moving Christmas presentation you’ve ever witnessed.

It’s a triumph of everything you want to feel at Christmas time!

C-Street Lights Up the Holidays!

C-Street Historic District

Commercial St. between Washington Ave. and Grant Ave. – Springfield, MO 65803

Free Admission

Recurring daily now through Dec 25, 2016.

5:00pm – 9:00pm



Explore a winter wonderland of over 10,000 twinkling lights and displays this holiday at Rutledge-Wilson Farm Park!

Festival of Lights

Downtown Springfield

Occurring at various downtown locations

Recurring daily now through Dec 31, 2016.

(417) 864-1105



Join this ongoing celebration of the winter holidays featuring fireworks, free ice skating, light displays, and more!

New Year’s Eve Masquerade Ball

Springfield-Branson Area (Savoy Ballroom)

December 31, 2016

8:00pm – 1:00am

Address: 224 E. Commercial Street – Springfield, MO

(417) 869-6789



Combination of Live and DJ’ed entertainment featuring the Bel Airs! Midnight revelry, complimentary champagne, countdown to midnight ends with our signature ballroom drop, where the balloons hold over $1,000 in cash and prizes!

Winter Solstice Tour

Smallin Civil War Cave

Recurring daily beginning Dec 14, 2016 through Dec 28, 2016.

Admission: $16.95 Adult ticket, $8.95 Children (4-12 years old)

(417) 551-4545



Winter Solstice Mystery: The Sun’s Alignment With An Ancient Petroglyph Inside Smallin Civil War Cave 300 feet inside of the shadowy 10-story wide arched entrance of Smallin Civil War Cave, lies a mystery. Carved on the side of a huge flowstone formation named “The Indian Ladder”, a strange petroglyph could be a silent legacy left by ancient Native American astronomers.

During the shortest days of the year (December 14th through December 28th), a remarkable phenomenon occurs at the entrance of Smallin Cave. Due to the winter tilt of the Earth and the south-facing position of the massive entrance of the cave, the rays of winter sunshine stream far back into Smallin’s depths. Reflecting on the floor and the walls of the cave, the morning rays of sunlight shine across the sun-shaped petroglyph (sometimes known as a “sun-glyph”), and cause the cave to take on a remarkable glow at around 10:00 A.M.

On sunny mornings during this Solstice period, between December 14th & December 28th (with the exceptions of Dec. 18th & Dec. 25th) the Solstice effect is on full display….come for the “Solstice Tour” at 10:00 A.M. and be amazed!

Lights of the Ozarks

Fayettville, Arkansas

November 18, 2016 – December 31, 2016

21 S. Block Ave.

Fayetteville, AR 72701



Enjoy the amazing winter wonderland of lights on the Downtown Square. The lights illuminate the square each evening from 5 p.m. to 1 a.m. Nightly carriages and pony rides, fresh hot chocolate, and festive holiday music make the Lights of the Ozarks an event that cannot be missed. The romantic and breathtaking display of a half-million twinkling lights is cherished by the locals and visitors alike that stroll or drive through the Lights of the Ozarks each year.

Viewing Of The Trumpeter Swans

North-Central Arkansas

November 26, 2016 – February 1, 2017

Heber Springs, AR 72543



A wintering population of trumpeter swans descends on Magness Lake every November. It is a scientific mystery why more than 100 of these birds flock to Heber Springs from their mid-western homes, but their arrival makes for an exciting birding experience. To view the swans, drive east on Hwy 110 from its intersection with Hwy 5 and Hwy 25 just east of Heber Springs. Go 3.9 miles from the intersection, turn left on paved Hays Road; the road sign is very small. Magness Lake is about a half-mile down Hays Road.

Hidden Natural Wonders of the Ozarks: Mammoth Spring

Marvel, Explore, Discover

Emerging from hundreds of underground caverns, the turquoise water that creates Mammoth Spring is fueled by rivers spanning across the North American continent, making it the seventh largest natural spring in the world. The cold water that surfaces from the spring creates excellent trout fishing conditions and sufficient flow for water sports on the Spring River.

Ancient Geology of the Ozarks

During the Paleozoic Periodwhich spanned from about 542 million years ago to 251 million years ago—the Ozarks was submerged beneath a shallow sea. After several millennia, the limestone deposits left from the ancient sea bed were eroded, forming hundreds of caverns throughout the Ozarks. Many Pre-Columbian artifacts have been discovered in these cave systems, suggesting that early Native American cultures utilized these underground chambers for shelter, food, and storage. For thousands of years, Native Americansparticularly the Osageinhabited the area of Mammoth Spring. Leaving a small ecological footprint, this ancient culture utilized the land and left behind artifacts and relics that can still be unearthed today.

The History of Mammoth Spring

Intrigued by the lush oak forests, azure springs, and abundance of wildlife, travelers from around the world began to flourish to the Ozarks. The early settlers prospered by exploiting the river fed by the spring, creating a mill, train depot, and a hydroelectric plant. Winding through mountains carpeted in forest, golden plains, and river valleys, the railroad connected to several cities spanning from St. Louis, Missouri to Memphis, Tennessee; eventually, increasing the population of Mammoth Spring.

Attractions and Events

Although no longer in service, the time-worn train station stands as a historical treasure, reminiscing the memories of the past. Formerly providing a connection to the nearby city of Mammoth Spring, the 1886 Frisco train depot is one of many pieces of history located in the area. The former hydroelectric plant and mill nearby allows visitors and locals to understand the economic importance the spring had to the early development of the early settlers of Mammoth Spring. A pavilion, picnic areas, baseball field, and playground are available for visitors as well. Seasonal boat rentals on Spring Lake can be obtained at the visitor center.

Visitor Center:
Jan. – Dec. Sun. – Sat. 8 a.m. – 5 p.m.
With the following exception:
May 22 – Sept. 6 Sun. – Sat. 8 a.m. – 6 p.m.

Jan. – Dec.
Sun. 1 p.m. – 5 p.m.
Tues. – Sat. 8 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Closed Monday (except Mon. holidays)

Boat Rental:
Apr. 1 – Sept. 30 Sun. – Sat. 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.


  • Springer and Scotchmoor (2010); “Paleontology and geology”.
  • “Meramec Caverns”. St. Louis Post-Dispatch. 2007-05-24. p. 60. An hour’s drive from St. Louis down Interstate 44, Meramec Caverns packages 400 million years of history and science into hour-long tours of five layers of underground caverns. It’s Missouri’s largest show cave.
  • Bailey, Garrick Alan (ed.). 1999. The Osage and the Invisible World: From the Works of Francis La Flesche. Norman, OK: University of Oklahoma Press.
  • USGS Surface Water for Arkansas: Peak Streamflow”. Retrieved 2016-12-12.
  • A. G. Unklesbay, Jerry D. Vineyard. Missouri Geology — Three Billion Years of Volcanoes, Seas, Sediments, and Erosion, University of Missouri Press, 1992.
  • Rafferty, Milton D. The Ozarks: Land and Life, University of Arkansas Press, 2nd ed., 2001.

The Essence of Capturing a Home: Professional vs Amateur Photography

House Comparison

Similarly to the cover of a book, the exterior and interior photos of a home should catch the eye of the affluent buyer. Homes that are professionally photographed can sell for several $1000’s more than the original listing price. The photo taken on the left is the average quality of what real estate agents and amateur photographers take with a camera phone or point-and-shoot camera. By choosing a professional photographer with years of experience, art direction, and high quality equipment, a photographer can add appeal to the home, increasing the likelihood of selling it faster and for a greater value.

Consequences of Not Hiring a Professional

Photographs evoke emotion and impact buyers’ decision to further evaluate a home. They Inspire creativity and expose a home’s true potential for future possibilities. A false or incorrect presentation of a property can mislead and turn away potential buyers, consequently leading to future conflict. Photos that display differential color schemes, distortion, and erroneous lighting are all false impressions of a home.

False or Incorrect Presentation of Colors

Incorrect in-camera white balance, fluorescent lighting, and color cast can alter the true colors of the interior and exterior of a home.

Bad Composition and Angles

Unlike an experienced photographer, amateur photographers lack art direction. An adept artist can highlight the best features of a home by mastering composition and lighting. They aspire to capture the most intriguing angles and architecture of a home, to make it as desirable as possible.

Distorted Photos

Camera and lens distortion can greatly deceive one’s perception of a home. Amateur photographers lack the expertise on how to correct distortion through editing software, consequently leading to warped architecture, bent furniture, and crooked angles.

Overexposed/Underexposed Images

Underexposed and overexposed photos can eliminate essential details of a home. Inexperienced photographers frequently make the mistake of trying to compensate for dark shadows by simply brightening a photo. This can lead to overexposed skies and outdoor lighting. Amateur photographers lack the knowledge of how to properly adjust RGB levels through editing software, which preserves crucial elements of the home.

Noisy and Grainy Photos

Most amateur photographers and real estate agents do not use high-end DSLR cameras, nor are they capable of calibrating the ideal settings through the camera’s manual mode. In dark environments, photos taken without the correct in-camera settings, external light sources, and a tripod will turn out blurry or noisy. A professional photographer will adjust their camera settings accordingly to the scenefine-tuning the ISO, shutter speed, and aperture whilst having the camera mounted atop a tripod.

The image displayed on the left shows what most amateurs and real estate agents capture using a point-and-shoot camera in a low-light setting. Without the aid of a tripod, the auto settings in the camera were incorrect. The windows and ceiling lights are also overexposed; the indoor lighting cast warm color tones against the wood floors, making them appear orange. The composition is off centered. Noticeable noise and grain shows throughout the photo due to the dark lighting and high ISO set in the camera.

The Benefits of Hiring a Professional Photographer

Professionally-photographed homes can sell from $3,400 to $11,000 more than the original listing price and significantly faster, according to a study conducted by Redfin. Photos are the second most important element in marketing a home (after price). It is estimated that 92% of home buyers use the internet and digital media to search for a new home (as reported by . If they are displeased by the images they see online, chances are they will pass on the house.

Professional Photography: What you’re Paying for

Education and Experience

An experienced photographer will have dedicated several thousand hours on training in the art of photography. They will understand and comprehend their equipment to the full extent. While possessing the mastery of technical details, they will thoroughly understand how to correct color imbalance by adjusting color temperature and levels. Professional photographers will utilize light painting, selectively lighting certain areas and blending the exposures together. An adept photographer will also be able to properly set their camera to the correct exposure intuitively to the scene without needing to flip through a manual.

Photography Equipment

As technology evolves, professional photographers must be up-to-date with modern equipment to produce the most compelling, high definition images to present-day. Which means a large portion of their income will be used to purchase an assortment of high quality lenses, computer software, filters, and more.

Art Direction

The first impression is essential, it should inspire and motivate the buyer of future capabilities. Professional photographers immediately know how to direct the focus to the best horizontal and vertical lines of a home, capturing the most appealing elements and details.

Want to Have a Professional Photograph your Home?

Contact Ozarks Mountain Living to schedule a photoshoot of your home/property.

We offer the best expertise to properly market your listing to thousands of people internationally.

Our photography packages include:

  • Aerial Photography captured with a DJI Phantom 4 Drone utilizing GPS Controlled Quad-copter Technology
  • High Definition Interior and Exterior Photography
  • Advanced Lighting and Editing techniques processed through Adobe Photoshop CS6 & Creative Cloud
  • Virtual Tours and Video Services



The image on the left—taken with a point and shoot camera on auto settings—displays several problems. The windows are overexposed, eliminating details of the home including the curtains, wood floors, and cabinets. The composition is incorrect, camera distortion and warping can be visibly seen on the edges of the photo. It was also unnecessary to include the wall cluttered with outlets, extended ceiling, door frame, and a cropped ceiling fan in the corner.

Professional photographers are equipped with the best gear for the job. Most point-and-shoot cameras have small sensors and do not include a variety of lenses. This limitation can leave out important details of a home. Both images displayed were taken at the same spot, but with different cameras and settings. On the right, a professional photographer used a DSLR with a wide angle lens. This expanded the view, including the entire bathroom. The image on the left has cropped out half of the bathroom. It also displays warm color cast on the white counter tops from the interior lighting (altering the true color), overexposed windows, and harsh shadows.

Looking for a New Home? Protect Yourself!

Your Real Estate Buyer's Guide to the Ozarks

We are coming to the start of hunting season here in the Ozarks and land properties are a must buy for the avid outdoors enthusiast; however, residential properties are still being viewed by prospective first-time home owners looking for a quiet place to set roots. For those who are about to place their money into their new home, I want to caution you with some words of advice: Protect Your Investment!

When you go to see your lender for the first time (whether it is for pre-qualification, pre-approval, or at the time of loan application), they are required to give you Form HUD-92564-CN, which looks like this:

Screenshot 2016-09-15 12.13.10

The overall reason to consider a home inspection is you get an unbiased third party to look over your investment. An inspector will get into the nitty-gritty of what makes your home stand up and they will be able to tell you of anything that might need some TLC when you take ownership of the home.

When you are making this decision, you need to know that you, as the buyer, must ask for a home inspection. You can even make your home inspection part of the contract agreement, ensuring you understand where you are placing your money.

An important thing to understand is that an appraisal is not the same as a home inspection. Appraisals are an overall estimation of the home’s worth and to ensure that it is, indeed, marketable. As such, appraisals are for the lender, not the buyer. For the buyer, a home inspection looks at the soundness, not the value, of the home, and serves as a means of seeing things that an appraiser may miss.

Overall, when you move anywhere, you have to ensure that you are an informed buyer. This is your money and home ownership is an investment in your future. You want to have the best investment your money can buy. Our real estate agents are more than willing to help you find an inspector that you can trust. More importantly, our agents want one thing above all else: to help you find a home you will love for the rest of your life.

– Chris

PS: Whether you already own your home or are interested in buying properties in the Ozarks, owning a home requires stewardship of your investment. Steven Dabney of New Creations Inspections is an experienced inspector who can help you out. He can be reached at (417) 967-6491.


OML is Taking to the Skies!

Your Real Estate Buyer's Guide to the Ozarks

It’s an exciting time for Ozarks Mountain Living. Every day, we are working to expand our existing pool of resources to meet our goal: provide the ability to cover the largest possible market at the most competitive price to convince people that the Ozark Mountain Region is the best place to live.

As such, I want to introduce you all to a new transfer. She was an expensive acquisition, but her work comes highly touted and we know she will do great things at OML.

Meet the Phantom 4 Unmanned Aircraft System!


After hours of research and market testing, we are pleased to have purchased a drone for use to our advertisers in the future. While it’s not quite ready for launch, we are actively working towards being ready to offer this service as soon as possible. We want to give people the best view of the Ozarks and nothing beats the look an eye-in-the-sky can offer.

We are working out pricing, but we do know that there are some things that we want. We want to have this up, running and available as soon as possible.

We do have to register the drone and I want to name it and bestow it a fitting name. Any suggestions? Leave us a comment!

– Chris

Welcome to Ozarks Mountain Living!

Your Real Estate Buyer's Guide to the Ozarks

I am not one to assume much, but I assume you made your way to our site for one reason: an interest in living in the Ozark Mountains. Whether it is for a small plot where you can live sustainably, a large farm to raise cattle, or just wanting to get away from the pressures of the big city, then you have found a good place to call home.

Our residents here are friendly, always willing to lend a hand.

Our school systems are smaller than a large city; so, your children will get more one-on-one attention as class sizes are smaller.

Screenshot 2016-09-12 11.39.07

source: Huffington Post

The price of land is competitive and appreciate over time ( Your dollar goes further here than in New York City (

$100 Map-state-01source:


Your cattle can graze for 300 days in the calendar year, meaning you can have fat, happy, and organically raised cattle to sell for a premium at market.

There are all four seasons here. Spring is mild and shows the reinvigoration of life. When you go to the Norfolk or Bull Shoals Lake in the summertime, the water is warm and you’ll get an amazing tan. The deciduous trees gracefully turn from green to orange, to brown, giving a striking view and gorgeous scenery. The winters are perfect to stay indoors, sit by the fireplace, and enjoy a warm mug of your favorite beverage.

The wildlife is plentiful and calls to the avid fisher, hunter, or outdoor enthusiast.

The outdoors are rugged and the terrain perfect for the camper who wants a challenging hike, but still able to find a campground.

Whatever your reason, take a look at our website. Every day, our advertisers are adding more and more listing. From the starter home to the executive ranch, our real estate agents have the perfect home for you.

Isn’t it time to find your forever home?

– Chris Gonzales