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Springtime in Branson

  
  
  
  

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Pointe Royale Properties, Inc.

Well, spring has officially sprung here in Branson.  The Ozark hills are flush with verdant new life, and the return of that bright green beauty that only spring can boast.  Summer is lovely, too. Don't get me wrong.  But by summer, the leaves of the primarily oaken forests are a deep, rich green, blending in with the deep green of the evergreens.  But in spring, the leaves are bright green, contrasting in a patchwork quilt of deep, dark, light, & bright greens. It's a beauty that only appears this time of year.

Spring Flowers

(photo by Aunt Owwee)

There is so much going on in this year's Ozark Mountain Spring.  From World Fest and Bluegrass & BBQ at Silver Dollar City, to the FLW Bass Fishing Tournament featured on ESPN, the spring is loaded to the gills with fun & festivities.  Here are some of the highlights:

April 7-May 8, Worldfest @ Silver Dollar City
April 28-30, Hand in Hand, Branson Honors Purple Heart Recipients
  April 29-30, Missouri Food & Wine Festival
May 12-30, Bluegrass & BBQ @ Silver Dollar City
May 19-22, 10th Annual Branson Motorcycle Rally
May 20-22, Plumb Nellie Days
May 21st, "Branson Doesn't Forget" Armed Services Appreciation Show
May 28, BBQ and Big Smith Show
May 28-31, Memorial Day Sidewalk Sale
May 30, Memorial Day Rememberances

And those are just a few of the Spring activities.  Gonna be lots of fun, lots of music, lots of BBQ, lots of good times!  Click HERE for a full listing of Ozark Mountain Spring events.

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Lone Star Steakhouse | Branson Dining

  
  
  
  

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Pointe Royale Properties, Inc.

This time of year, I'm almost always too busy here at Pointe Royale to actually "leave" work on my dinner break.  I usually just inhale some salad, or tuna, or chicken, and call it good enough.  Fortunately for me, yesterday, I had enough coverage at the office that leaving property for an actual off site dinner break was possible.  As I've mentioned before, I'm on the Atkins diet, so a low carb order is the order of the day.  So, on those rare occasions that I actually do eat out, I'm usually looking for a steak, or some grilled shrimp or seafood.

I chose to head on up to the local Lone Star Steakhouse, over on Green Mountain Drive.  I've eaten there before, but not in a couple of years, to be honest.  I made the right choice.  I sat down in the, obviously, Western (Texas) themed restaurant, and was soon greeted by a friendly server, and shortly thereafter, by a great tall glass of iced tea.  I was trying to decide if I wanted a big steak, or one of the combos.  I went with the steak & salmon combo, a choice I heartily recommend.

The steak was a 6 ounce, center cut sirloin, which I had them prepare medium.  When it arrived, my server had me cut it, to insure that it was done to my liking. It was nice & pink through the middle, and, oh, so very juicy.  I'd honestly say that it was the best steak I've had in a long time, even if it was only 6 ounces. Absolutely delicious.

Sweet Bourbon Salmon

The other half of the combo was the grilled salmon.  I've had their salmon before, and it is wonderful.  Tender, tasty, and prepared with a sweet bourbon glaze that really sets the taste buds on their ear, assuming taste buds have ears.  I ate it after the steak, thinking I would get the best part first, but if anything, the salmon was even better than the steak.  

Since I'm on the Atkins diet, I had to pass on the dinner rolls.  (But I've had them before, and they are good, too.)  I had the steamed broccoli, which was good, as good as greens get to a meat eater like me, and the dinner salad, minus the croûtons.  The great thing about Atkins, is that, even though I'm limited to foods that are low in carbs, I still get to eat wonderfully tasty foods, and not ever go unsatisfied.  And I was quite satisfied Thursday evening at Lone Star.  

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Dinner Cruise aboard the ShowBoat Branson Belle

  
  
  
  

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Pointe Royale Properties, Inc.

Showboat Branson Belle The beautiful Showboat Branson Belle has been gliding across the waters of Table Rock Lake for the past 15 years providing its many guests great food, wonderful entertainment and a step back in time when riverboats steamed the great rivers of our fabulous country.  The 2011 season is now under way with a new show and a new menu.  It was our pleasure to cruise the Branson Belle last evening and sample this exciting new show ENCORE. 

Our sailing was scheduled for 4pm and things got under way promptly.  Mr. Christopher James was our master of ceremonies. Christopher is an energetic young man as well as an accomplished magician.  As dinner is being served "The Rockin Dockers", a five piece ensemble provided a musical backdrop for our dinning pleasure.  Our service was the best, Valerie our server, was ever present to assist and insure our meal needs were completely satisfied.  A short intermission interlude after dinner allowed us to the enjoy the outside decks of the Branson Belle.  As we explored the ship this gave us the opportunity to enjoy the Ozarks and beauty of our surroundings as we gently skimmed across the normally serene waters of crystal clear Table Rock Lake. 

It's show time!  The new show ENCORE introduced us to the Showmen, six young men blending their voices in great harmony.  We were treated to a montage of musical hits performed by many of our favorite male groups. 

The real star of ENCORE is Ms. Janice Martin.  Her credentials include performances at Carnegie Hall in New York City and having studied at the world renown Juilliard School of Music.  There is no question, this is one multi-talented performer.  Ms. Martin was fabulous!  The Showboat Branson Belle has hit a home run with this show.  Make certain you include the Branson Belle on your itinerary this year.  We plan to see her performance again, soon.  You should too!  We can plan your next cruise experience on the Showboat Branson Belle, give us a call.

The Paddle Wheel Room is a private dinning room with seating for up to 40 guests.  Located at the rear on the 2nd deck its large picture windows provide a picturesque view of the massive churning paddle wheels and the spectacular scenery of Table Rock Lake in her wake.   Special mezzanine level center stage seating is reserved for all Paddle Wheel guests, perfect seats to take in a great show.  To complete your dinning experience a special menu is included with your Paddle Wheel Room reservation.

Making reservations with us at Pointe Royale Condominium Resort & Golf Course is quick and easy, simply click the on-line reservation link or call us directly at 800-962-4710.

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50 Years of Dick's 5 & 10 | Branson Shopping

  
  
  
  

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Branson isn't all music shows, golf, boating, fishing, and theme parks.  Though those things are likely the biggest draw. But what makes Branson so comfortable, homey, and friendly may have less to do with flashy music shows or thrill rides, and more to do with it's friendly locals, family values, and unique little nooks and crannies.  One such nook, bringing folks back year after year, is Dick's 5 & 10.

Dick's 5 & 10

Dick's 5 & 10 was founded in 1961, and, unless my math is particularly rusty, is celebrating it's 50th Anniversary this year. (July of this year, to be a tad more specific)  There was a time, in our fair land, where folks didn't drive down to the Mega-Mart to pick up their sundries, but rather headed to the local 5 & Dime. Dick's is a true throw-back to that quainter, simpler time.  A walk through Dick's 5 & 10 is a walk back through our history, to our childhood, to our innocence.  

They still sell the basics that they did 50 years ago:  sewing supplies, hardware, housewares, and linens.  They also sell toys, board games, and candy; all of it with a focus on nostalgia that will take you back, as well.  You'll see toys you've nearly forgotten, and taste candies you didn't know still existed.

In addition to the store's items for sale, are the collections to be viewed.  They have a wonderful collection of autographed Aviation prints hanging in their aisles.  Then, there is also their Baseball Wall of Fame, featuring memorabilia from Babe Ruth to Dizzy Dean to Lou Gehrig, to the Big Red Machine.  Other sports figures are represented here, too, such as Muhammad Ali and Michael Jordan.

Dick's 5 & 10 is part variety store, part museum, part walk down memory lane, and 100% fun.  It's located in old downtown Branson, and is surely worth the trip to see it, and the trip down memory lane.  Thank you Dick's 5 & 10! And congratulations on 50 years as an integral part of what makes Branson special!

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Andy Williams Moon River Grill in Branson, MO

  
  
  
  

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Opening night anywhere is an exciting event.  Whatever the business; opening night has to be definitely a pressure evening.  You want everything to be just right.  For those of us that live and work in a seasonal community opening night brings high hopes for a great new season.  I'm certain all the staff and management were equally excited last Friday night at Andy Williams Moon River Grill as they entered the 2011 season. 

Friday March 4, was my wife’s birthday and the Moon River Grill was her choice to enjoy her birthday dinner out.  The dress required like all of Branson is resort casual.  We were greeted with a very warm welcome from the hostess and all the staff members.  In the coming months I recommend that you make reservations.  The walls are covered with pictures of Andy with celebrates that he has meet and performed with on his TV show.   It was a treat to look at all the pictures. 

We were seated in the Atrium; it has a nice view of a waterfall and garden just outside.  The background music was live and he played throughout the time we were there.   Andy has some specialties on his menu that you don’t find everywhere.   The Chicken Pot Pie and Meatloaf are his mothers own recipe.  My wife’s choice was the Macaroni Cheese topped with Blackened Chicken Breast, and mine was the Marinated Bourbon Salmon.  The Macaroni Cheese is made with Gouda cheese. Wow!   It was so smooth, rich and creamy, the best we have ever tasted.  The Bourbon Salmon is marinated for 48 hours before preparation.  This salmon was delicious; we made two excellent choices for dinner.  Alyssa our served; made certain everything was just right. 

We enjoyed celebrating my wife’s birthday that evening at the Moon River Grill; we look forward to returning very soon.  The food, service and the atmosphere was just right.  If the Macaroni Cheese or the Salmon is not what you would order, the menu has much more to offer.  Try a full one pound burger; it is available with a smothering of cheese and toppings.  Happy hour is until 6pm.  Relax and unwind at Andy’s Moon River Grill in Branson, MO it’s just a short walk from the Moon River Theater.  Take in a show and dinner. 

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Opening Night in Branson Dixie Stampede Style

  
  
  
  

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Pointe Royale Properties, Inc.

The 2011 Branson Show Season has now officially opened! 

A near capacity crowd was on hand last Friday evening fDixie Stampedeor the opening performance of the Dixie Stampede

We have been to many performances at Dolly Parton’s Dixie Stampede and have enjoyed them all.  This past Friday we were fortunate to attend this opening performance with our 2 yr granddaughter, Riley. 

She was all dressed up for this special opening event.  Riley was really excited to be going to the Dixie Stampede.  On the short drive to the theater she kept repeating Dixie Stampede, Dixie Stampede, Dixie Stampede.  From the parking area to the lobby you must pass all the horse stalls.  Many of the horses were in the stalls ready to perform and as we passed each stall she would call out horsey, horsey, big horsey. She was excited, to say the least.

This was going to be really something different for us to watch the excitement and enthusiasm of a 2yr old enjoy the show.  She clapped, tried to stomp her feet and danced to the music through out the performance. 

You bring your own utensils; your fingers.  So it’s just right for a two year old.  She had plenty to eat and with the help of a horsey bag we had some left over’s the next day. 

The show has lots of action from start to finish, never a dull moment.  Lots of changes have been made from the previous years show, adding to the fun.  At the conclusion we were able to approach one of the riders as she postioned her horse along side the arena and she allowed us to pet her horse Gator.  What a treat for any child.  

Dixie Stampede is a show for all ages, it is a family show.  As I looked around the area that night everyone young and old was having such a great time.  For us, it was a super evening as we enjoyed The Dixie Stampede through the eyes of our granddaughter. 

A trip to Branson is not complete without The Dixie Stampede as part of your itinerary.  You might just find that 2yr old inside you having a wonderful time.  We can help plan your trip to Branson, Pointe Royale and the Dixie Stampede.

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Ziplining tours in Branson

  
  
  
  

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Ziplining is fast becoming a big attraction for vacationers here in Branson.  We now have four to choose from, The Vigilante at Shepherd of the HillsVigilante Ziprider Branson Zipline and Canopy Tours, Zipline USA and Adventure Zipline of Branson.  When I saw the first construction taking place on 65 north of Branson, I immediately thought of the movie with Sean Connery who portrayed a cancer research scientist in the Amazon jungle. They were ziplining from tree top to tree top in search of a cure. Zipling

How cool is this, that we are going to have this kind of experience right here in Branson.  I was salivating to get my chance at hanging on a cable gliding through the hills of the Ozark Mts.  During the Show & Shine Car Show at Shepherd of the Hills last summer I got my chance to ride the Vigilante.  Wow! 

Inspiration Tower can be seen from all over Branson as it rises up from one of the highest points in the Ozarks plus another 270 feet.  When you reach the observation deck you have an unobstructed 360 degree panoramic view of Branson and the surrounding beauty of the Ozarks.  It clearly reminds me of why I choose to reside here, in God's country.  There are many great places on this planet and I had the opportunity to see a few, but there is nothing like coming home to these Ozark hills.  Oh, I'm off the track, let's get back to the ride. 

First you must weigh-in, as there is a weight limit.  I had no problem with this, but one of our friends was really close to being turned away.  We boarded the elevator for our ride to the top of Inspiration Tower.  We checked-in for our ride; to our surprise we had to weigh-in again.  We all teasing each other about the diets we needed to be on.  The staff gathered us and prepared us with a few last minute instructions and strapped us in.  

The gates opened and the ride was on!  Just a slight drop is felt as we descended from the platform to the cable.  I‘ve had the good fortune to experience cable cars and tram ride as high as 12,000 feet, but this was a rush!  There are four cables to the Vigilante rather than one, so for us it was a race to the bottom.  As we neared the end I thought how is this going to stop? Well, no big deal.  A large spring brings you to a gentle stop.  The ever present camera guy is there to snap your picture just before landing.  A van ride back to the top and our zipline ride experience was complete.  We decided to buy the picture because it was neat.  It makes a great conversation piece over the fireplace. 

With four ziplines to choose from I'm looking forward to my next ride.  Check out which zipline ride you want to try!  See ya in the tree tops! 

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March Madness......Branson Style.

  
  
  
  

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2011 NAIA CHAMPIONSHIP

March Madness.  The Big Dance.  Cinderella at the Ball.  David vs Goliath, for all the marbles.  We are all familiar with the NCAA Tournament and Final Four each spring.  With the exception of the World Series, March Madness is my personal favorite sporting event.  But that isn’t the only Mad March.  Right here in Branson, MO, each & every spring, the March gets excitingly and exceedingly Mad, as well.  To be completely accurate, the epicenter of the Madness is College of the Ozarks, at Point Lookout, MO, just a few miles south of Branson.  Each March, the best teams in NAIA’s Division II converge on the Keeter Gymnasium on the Campus of College of the Ozarks for the Men’s National Basketball Championship Tournament.  This year’s tournament is slated for March 9-15, and should be especially magical, as it’s the 20th such tournament.  College of the Ozarks has played host to the tournament each year since 2000. 

Obviously, the families, friends, and fans of the participant teams make up a large portion of the crowd.  (And here at Pointe Royale, we offer a Spring Special that attendees can take advantage of.)  But the tournament has become a real Branson event, too.  The locals crowd into the Keeter Gymnasium to enjoy some fantastic basketball in an exciting college championship atmosphere.  Rest assured, great basketball competition can be found at all levels.  And this is the pinnacle of such competition in NAIA Division II.  The teams are both talented and well coached, and are great examples of true student athletes.  This year’s Championship Game will be nationally televised at 9pm on CBS College Sports.  So let’s get out and enjoy some great college hoops!

Click here for a complete list of times and ticket info.

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Montana Mike's for Lunch | Pointe Royale Blog

  
  
  
  

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Lunch at Montana Mike’s

My Dad had some business that brought him to our fair city today.  And whenever he’s in town, we like to have lunch or dinner together.  So we met today for lunch at Montana Mike’s on hwy 248.  We’ve eaten there many times, and I’ve eaten there many times without him.  It’s one of my favorite places to eat in Branson. 

That said, I’m on the Atkins Diet, all low carb foods.  I’ve really not been out to eat since I started the diet a few weeks ago.  (I did go out one other time, and had a burger without the bun.  It wasn’t very fulfilling.)  I sat down with my menu, knowing that my typical orders, their awesome Hickory Burger or the Chicken Fried Steak, were not on my diet.  So I needed to try something new.  I settled on the Steak and Shrimp combo, with Grilled rather than Fried Shrimp.  It comes with a 9 oz sirloin steak and 10 skewered shrimp, with a very tasty buttery-cajun seasoning.  Now, I love a good steak.  So I wasn’t surprised when it was very good.  But the Shrimp was fantastic.  I don’t usually care much for seafood; but this Shrimp was great.   They had several choices for people like me, who are on a low carb diet, as well as the richer foods that I’ve enjoyed so much in the past.

One thing they do at Montana Mike’s, is to have you cut your steak when it arrives, just to be sure it is cooked to your liking.  I appreciated that.  If there’s a problem, they can take care of it right away.  Good customer service.  Arlene was our server, and she did a great job, as usual, taking care of us, especially keeping our iced tea glasses filled.  I appreciated that, too.

If you’ve never been there, the décor is pretty consistent with the restaurant’s name:  lots of animal pelts, fishing gear, and rugged looking, outdoorsman memorabilia.  It’s got lots of seating, so I’ve never had to wait very long for a table.  There are 2 Montana Mike’s in Branson: the one we dined at today, and one on hwy 76, which is closed now for re-model.  If you like good food, good portions, and good service; then stop in at Montana Mike’s.

Montana Mike's

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Branson & the Old West | Western & Cowboy Music & Heritage

  
  
  
  

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Riders of the Circle B

Branson is the “Live Music Capitol of the World.”  And much of Branson’s music reputation is built on Country & Western music.  It’s easy to find the Country.  It’s nearly everywhere.  But where do you turn when you are really only looking for the Western of the Country & Western?  You know…….good old Cowboy culture:  six guns, trusty steeds, ten gallon hats, tumbleweeds, and tight harmonies. Well, look no further.  Here are 5 great Branson shows that truly bring honest, rugged, tumbleweeds-dancing-down-the-dusty-street Western music and culture to life right here in Branson.

  1. Sons of the Pioneers.  This pillar of the Western music world has been weaving tight harmonies and tales (some taller than others) of the Old West for 75 years and counting.  Their classic renditions of “Tumblin’ Tumbleweeds,” “Cool Water,” and “Ghost Riders in the Sky” are landmarks in the history of American music.  They perform at Shepherd of the Hills, with a tantalizing Chuck Wagon Dinner show.
  2. Circle B Supper Show.  Speaking of great Chuck Wagon Dinner shows, the Riders of the Circle B serve up a great dinner and even greater evening of entertainment.  Before the show, you’ll enjoy popcorn and Old Western movies & TV shows.  Then, this hilarious family serves up a great meal, all from scratch, and performs some fantastic Cowboy, & Cowgirl, music.  I’ve seen the show twice, myself; and had a great time at each performance.  You’ll love the intimate setting, and the music!
  3. Roy Rogers Jr Show.  Following in the footsteps of his legendary father, Roy Rogers Jr takes you back to those classic western moments with great music, comedy, and nostalgia.  Joined by his son, Dustin, and backed by the High Riders Band, you’ll understand why Roy Rogers Jr was named 2009 and 2010 Western Artist of the Year by FAME.  (Families Advocating Moral Entertainment)
  4. Shepherd of the Hills Outdoor Drama.  One of the best selling American novels of all time,  Harold Bell Wright’s classic, “The Shepherd of the Hills,”  is brought to life nightly at the historic outdoor Old Mill Theatre.  Not exactly full of music, but this tale of mountain folklore and plain old mountain folk is a must see.
  5. Silver Dollar City’s “Headin’ West.  As you likely already know, Silver Dollar City is full to overflowing with 1880's music, craftsmanship, and lore, with a variety of music shows, the saloon show, and many, many more.  But you may not know of the acclaimed musical “Headin’ West.”  It was produced specially for Silver Dollar City, and features great music, special effects, and ultra-talented performers. 

Now, after all that Western fun and fare, you’ll likely want to take a great Western photo of your own cowboy crew.  You may want to give “Saloon Photos” & “Mo’s Old Time Photos” a try.   Each is located right on 76 Country Boulevard, and a trip to either will give you a period photo keepsake to commemorate your Branson Old West Adventure.

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