The choice of exciting activities and things to do in Branson, Missouri is seemingly endless and continues to grow and expand. Always popular with visitors are those events relating to Ozark’s history, heritage, and tradition and one of the most popular heritage events for the past two decades has been the downtown “fiddle contest,” a one day event.
Building on that popularity, the 21st edition will become a three day event called the “Downtown Branson Fiddle Festival” which will be held August 28 through August 30. The event will incorporate Branson’s Historic Downtown with the downtown’s newest shopping and entertainment attraction, Branson Landing and, in addition to the fiddle contest will feature a host of other activities. All the activities of the festival, including the fiddle contest are free.
Information received from the sponsors of the Festival, The Downtown Branson Main Street Association, The Historic Downtown Branson Business Owners, The Branson/Lakes Area Chamber of Commerce/CVB, The Branson Landing and The City of Branson indicate the Festival will start off with a free “Big Smith” concert in Branson Landing’s Public Square, on the banks of Lake Taneycomo near the Branson Landing Fountains on Friday, August 28 at 8:00 p.m.
The fiddling competition for over $5,000 in cash prizes will be held on August 29 and 30 in Branson Landing at the same location as the “Big Smith Concert” is being held. The competition will be divided into six divisions and conducted in two phases. The six competitive divisions, Pee Wee (9 and younger), Junior (10 through 16), Senior (60 and older), Cross Tuning, Seconding (Guitar/Bass accompaniment) and Open will compete in the Preliminaries on Saturday August 29 at the Branson Landing Fountains from 10:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. The winner of each division, except for the Seconding and Cross Tuning divisions, will compete in the finals on Sunday, August 30 from 12:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.
According to information received from the sponsors, the events producer Bill Lennon indicates that fiddlin’ is an integral part of the fabric of the Ozarks. “The Ozarks and Fiddlin’ should be like New Orleans and Jazz,” Lennon said. “There’s no reason why this event can’t be an event of national importance.”
The Festivals “Big Smith Concert,” Preliminary and Final rounds of competition and a Gospel Service on Sunday, August 30 starting at 10:00 a.m. will be held at Branson Landing. In addition, the information received indicates the “Historic Downtown area will host fiddling seminars and other activities in the Ozarks Music & Culture Tent; additionally, there will be street performances, sidewalk sales, a Farmers Market and more throughout the Downtown area.”
For additional information or to enter the Downtown Branson Fiddle Festival call The Downtown Branson Main Street Association 417-334-1548. For additional information on Branson shows, attractions or lodging please contact the Branson Tourism Center by calling 800-785-1550 or by clicking here to visit their website www.BransonTourismCenter.com.