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Field Trip: {Dewey Short Visitor Center}

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My family makes several visits a year to Branson, MO.  We’ve seen the shows, tried the most talked about restaurants and enjoyed the atmosphere.  However we’ve never once visited the Dewey Short Visitor Center on Table Rock Lake.


We drove down to see the dam and decided to stop and visit.  Boy, am I glad we did!
We arrived only 40 minutes before closing, but we now know that this is somewhere to stop, when we have more time to explore.


We spent the most time in the kids area.  We walked in and the clothesline filled with real animal furs sent the kids into a frenzy.  They pet them, compared them, and then pet them some more.  The fashion show they put on was quite a hit! They even convinced Daddy that he needed some fur!

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I hurried them along, so we could enjoy other activities, but I’m quite sure they would’ve spent hours playing with the furs!


There were so many fun activities! We laughed as we tried to match the poop to the animal.


There was a table of turtle shells and deer antlers that we could play with and study.  Bear loved this table!  He kept “trying on” the antlers.


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 The window seat reading corner was fun, but we instantly spotted a book that was misguided {We just read that bears do not truly hibernate, although they are widely believed to.}


There was an area to figure out which tracks belonged to which animal and a case of skulls and bones we could admire.

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The stuffed animals that were hung all around the kids room were a hit, as well.

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I finally convinced everyone that we needed to head downstairs to check out the rest of the place, before closing.

We breezed through the information and displays on the first people in the Ozarks but I will definitely be spending more time down here on our next visit.


There was tons of information about water safety and animals native to Missouri.  It was very comparable to Bass Pro Shops, but with more information provided.


The kids had fun seeing how long it took them to get into their life jackets.  Trust me, it takes longer than you’d think.

Our last stop was on the observation deck overlooking Table Rock Lake.  We were there just in time to see the Branson Belle floating away.


We were out of time but we decided to end our day by checking out the dam from the other side of the bridge.



This was an awesome learning experience and there was so much more that we didn’t have time to explore.  Our next trip will include hiking, the tour and the 22 minute film explaining why the dam was built.

If you’re looking to enjoy a free and fun day, make sure you add Dewey Short Visitor Center to your list of “must see” activities in Branson!