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Since we live just a few miles away, we like to make an evening of checking out the Christmas decorations in Carthage, Missouri, every year. In the area’s rich past, American Indians and French settlers called this place home. After the Louisiana Purchase, Carthage became a city and the county seat of Jasper County. This historic city is perhaps most famous, however, for the Civil War; the Battle of Carthage was fought here, and some of the homes in the city date back to the 1870s when the residents rebuilt after the war. These Victorian-style houses are beautiful any time of year, but they are exceptionally magic at Christmastime. If you are into Route 66 and its history, you’ll also find remnants of the highway’s past. In the mid-1970s, Vietnamese-American Catholics established their American monastery in Carthage; it’s now known as the Congregation of the Mother of the Redeemer. Every…

For Christmas this year, my husband and I decided to take a getaway together instead of buying each other gifts. We do this often, actually, and I am so grateful to be married to someone who loves trips as much as I do. Since Branson is only an hour and a half away, it often works well for a destination for us as a couple. My parents stay with the kids, and suddenly it’s just the two of us on a little road trip. This year, we stayed at a cabin at Silver Dollar City campground near Branson, Missouri. Formerly, the campground was known as The Wilderness at Silver Dollar City. I’ve always wanted to give it a try, so I thought, why not? I was sure to reserve a cabin with a fireplace. If I was going to do this, I was going to do it right. Luckily, that…

Family travel is amazing, but sometimes you just need a little getaway as a couple. Since it’s only an hour and a half away, Jeff and I take a long weekend just for us to Branson every few months. It’s important to take couple time to connect, and we’re lucky to have my parents nearby to spoil Kristin for a weekend every now and then. Planning a Trip In early October, Jeff and I grabbed our calendar to see when we could squeeze in some time for us. We saw the perfect weekend in December.  I’d be finished with coaching speech for the semester, and it would before the craziness of Christmas kicked in, so we took it. As long as the all the stars aligned, including weather and health, we were taking a weekend for us. And as that weekend drew closer, we realized we were eligible to see…

I’ll admit, this title may be a little misleading.  Just know this–Branson, Missouri, does Christmas in a big way.  Branson at Christmas time is a Christmas-lover’s paradise.  But if you’re not feeling it yet and you need a little Christmas, Branson will make any Grinch’s heart grow ten sizes.  Here are my favorite ways to embrace the holidays in Branson. 1. An Old Time Christmas at Silver Dollar City If you only have time for one attraction in Branson during the Christmas season, you should choose An Old Time Christmas at Silver Dollar City.  This 1880s theme park transforms into a magical Christmas town complete with over 6.5 million Christmas lights.  Merry and bright, indeed. Silver Dollar City has so much to offer during Christmas time.  The comfort food is abundant, and you’ll have so many entertainment options that you won’t be able to see everything in one day.  Consider…

If you’re looking for a special place to get into the Christmas spirit, look no further than Silver Dollar City in Branson, Missouri.  Every year during November and December, the park is transformed into a winter wonderland with Christmas touches in every nook and cranny.  My family has been coming to Silver Dollar City at Christmas time for fourteen years, and we often go more than once.  I’d like to share some of the details that make An Old Time Christmas at Silver Dollar City so special while giving you my best tips for making it a memorable trip instead of a miserable one.  Sometimes crowds can dampen even the jolliest of elves’ Christmas joy, so I’ll share with you what I’ve learned through a lot of trial and error. Get to Silver Dollar City Before Opening This really is so helpful in getting the most out of your experience. …

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