SGF Layover Ideas: This is what the Cities of Springfield and Branson have to offer:
SPRINGFIELD offers for free historical sites, attractions, art and parks:
The Battle of Springfield Driving Tour, downtown, free, showcasing 12 informative markers placed throughout the battleground commemorating the 1863 Civil War battle fought in the heart of the city.
Founders Park, downtown, with murals and displays depicting Springfield events over the past 100 years and
Park Central Square, the site of the first recorded shootout of the Wild West Era.
Commercial Street Historic District, a few blocks north of the Square, offers a variety of arts, entertainment and shopping along with the:
Jefferson Avenue Footbridge. The 106-year-old footbridge is one of the nation’s longest,
Gray/Campbell Farmstead, Railroad Historical Museum,
Springfield National Cemetery,
Missouri Institute of Natural Science,
Wilson’s Creek National Battlefield; a nominal fee is charged for a driving tour of the battlefield.
History Museum for Springfield-Greene County; fee is by donation.
Keyes Gallery in downtown Springfield featuring high-quality paintings, pottery and custom framing,
Springfield Hot Glass Studio, with glassblowing and torch-working demonstrations,
Springfield Hot Glass Studio
and many others are regular participants in the popular – and free – First Friday Art Walk the first Friday evening of each month.
The city of Springfield also has plenty of public art, including more than 45 murals, statues and sculptures. Check out the statues of sports legends at The Legends Walkway outside the Missouri Sports Hall of Fame and don’t miss the K-Man, an interactive sculpture at Jordan Valley Park. Other favorites include The Elephant’s Child sculpture in front of Dickerson Park Zoo, The World’s Largest Fork in Chesterfield Village and the Sun Target sculpture at the Springfield Art Museum, where admission is by donation.
A visit to Springfield wouldn’t be complete without visiting the city’s free public gardens, parks, nature center and greenways trails.
Public gardens include the Master Gardeners Demonstration Garden at Nathanael Greene Park and several gardens – all maintained by volunteers – at Close Memorial Park. It’s easy to spend hours at these adjacent parks admiring the flowers and other flora.
Part of the Ozark Greenways Trails Network also goes through Close Memorial Park. The city has 60 miles of trails that go through urban and rural areas, great for walking, running and biking.
More trails are available at the Springfield Conservation Nature Center, along with an expansive visitor’s center. Sightings of wildlife are guaranteed at this Springfield gem.
On hot days, dip your toes in The Ozarks Stream or get totally soaked in the Fountain at Jordan Valley Park. The stream runs continuously while the fountain shoots water up in a random pattern from 10 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. daily for 30 minutes at the beginning of each hour and continuously from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.
BRANSON, MISSOURI - where you'll find world-class entertainment for the whole family in the natural Ozark Mountains.
Truly a remarkable vacation destination, Branson has 52 magnificent live performance theaters, three pristine lakes, 12 championship golf courses, an international award-winning theme park, dozens of attractions and museums, shopping galore, a full range of dining options, and a host of hotels, motels, resorts and meeting and conference facilities.
The Branson/Lakes Area Chamber of Commerce and Convention & Visitors Bureau can help make planning your trip easier and more convenient. It can provide you with a wealth of information about what's available in Branson. Tel: 1-800-296-0463.