Branson’s unique tourism tripod

Branson, the live music show capital of the world, has a passion for providing the millions of tourists that come to Branson each year a quality and variety of entertainment that is both memorable and unique. From a world class theme park, its great shows and lakes, Branson provides the opportunity for an entertainment experience that is unrivaled anywhere.

If a person used one of Branson major destination web sites such as or contacted a major provider of Branson tourism services such as the Branson Tourism Center for information about what there is to do in Branson, they would literally be overwhelmed by the hundreds of shows, attractions, and activities available. Yet, if Branson were a camera sitting on a tripod, it would be supported by the three legs Branson’s Shows, Silver Dollar City, and Table Rock Lake.

If one of those legs were missing the Branson of today would be, to say the least, unstable and at risk of losing its relevance as a major tourist destination. An argument could also be made that not only is the Branson of today being supported by the “tourism tripod,” but was built upon it.

Branson’s shows are the first leg of the tripod. It started in 1959 when the Mabe family opened Branson’s first live commercial show the “Baldknobbers, A few years later the Presleys’ built their theatre on what has now become the “Branson Strip.” From that simple beginning, Branson has grown to the point where, because of the the number and quality of its live shows, Branson is billed as “the live music show capital of the world.”

“Silver Dollar City,” the second leg of the tripod, was opened in 1960 by the Herschend family and has developed into a world class theme park that is easily Branson’s number one paid attraction. Silver Dollar City is constantly evolving with new festivals, rides, or shows designed to give its guests “memories that will last a lifetime.” Of equal importance to Branson is the promotion, both in market and out of market, that Silver Dollar City does promoting not only itself but Branson.

The last leg of the tripod is Table Rock Lake. The result of the Table Rock Dam, which was completed in 1958, Table Rock Lake, along with the world class trout fishery it created in Lake Taneycomo, added a vital water component to Branson’s entertainment offerings. This leg of the tripod also represents the natural beauty of the Ozarks which along with Table Rock Lake and Lake Taneycomo contributes tremendously to the uniqueness of the Branson entertainment experience.

In 1958, Branson was basically a small laid back town in the Ozarks. Then, one at a time, the legs of the tourism tripod, Branson Shows, Silver Dollar City and Table Rock Lake, were firmly put in place. The entertainment concept of “Branson” was firmly attached to the top of that tripod and the rest has become entertainment history.