The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

December 27, 2012

Dave Woods: Favorite holiday just around the corner

Branson offers NYE fun for everyone

By Dave Woods
Digital market development manager

BRANSON, Mo. — We all have our favorite holiday.

For some, it’s Christmas and Easter because of their spiritual significance.

For others, it’s getting together with old friends and family — like ’em or not — around a crowded table topped with holiday fare.

Deviled eggs, anyone? Some love fireworks, picnics or life on the lakes.

My favorite holiday celebrates the outgoing year and welcomes in a new one. And there’s free champagne if you find the right party.

I wait 364 days each year for the opportunity to wear a funny paper hat, pull on exploding paper confetti poppers and drink from plastic champagne glasses.

I love New Year’s Eve. It’s all about rest, relaxation and sipping some bubbly submerged in a good hotel hot tub.

My New Year’s stay-cation in Branson has been planned for weeks. The three-day excursion allows me to pamper myself a little. By “pamper,” I mean sleeping past 7 a.m., eating great meals, trying new restaurants and staying up past 11 p.m.

If you’re still struggling between staying local or hitting the road for a day or three, I suggest taking a two-hour drive south to Branson.

Relax. Leave the kids at home and grab an adult outing in the Ozarks. Couples, singles or groups of adults will find plenty to do in Branson. Accommodations are available for any price range.

There’s only one New Year’s Eve each year, so better make the best of it.

It’s easy: Do some quick online research, plan and book. Keep it simple.

Slow down, do some shopping and find a restaurant that challenges your imagination.

I assembled a list of special New Year’s Eve performances and shows. Many include a meal, champagne toast at midnight or adult beverages. There are plenty of shows and activities for families, too.

All are solid options for a great New Year’s Eve out. Staying local is great, but I don’t want to be “that guy” in the silly paper hat. Not in Joplin, at least.

Paul Harris & The Cleverlys

When : 8 p.m.

Where: The White House Theater

Phone: 417-335-2396

Celebrate New Year’s Eve at the White House Theatre with an international food court including foods from China, Italy, Mexico and America. Cash bar, featuring a signature Paul Harris cocktail.


Showboat Branson Belle

When: 8 p.m.

Where: 4800 State Highway 165

Phone: 417-336-7100

Experience stunning views of Table Rock Lake, fine dining and an extraordinary show all aboard what is billed as “America’s Most Entertaining Dinner Cruise” — the Showboat Branson Belle. See the special patriotic production “Made In the USA,” featuring Janice Martin, the world’s only aerial violinist, The ShowMen, an all-male vocal group and comedian, magician and emcee Christopher James.



New Year’s Eve Fiesta

When: 9 p.m.

Where: Hamner Barber Theater

Phone: 417-334-4363

This New Year’s Eve in Branson, there is no better way for you and your family to wind up this stressful past year than to laugh, dance and sing the night away at the third annual Hamner Barber Theater New Year’s Eve Fiesta.



Clay Cooper’s New Year’s Eve Bash

When: 9 p.m.

Where: Clay Cooper Country Music Express Theatre

Phone: 417-332-2529

The New Year’s Eve show at Clay Cooper Theatre features the Country Express Show and other special guests. Hors d’oeurves are served at 8 p.m. There will also be a cash bar, party favors and a midnight toast.



New Year’s Eve Celebration at Big Cedar Lodge

When: 8 p.m.

Where: Big Cedar Lodge

Phone: 800-225-6343

Who: Adults only

Join Big Cedar for an evening of celebration as we ring in 2013. Dance the night away with live music from 65 South and enjoy multiple food stations and drinks throughout the night. Top off the evening while watching Big Cedar’s fireworks show, midnight champagne toast, party hats and noise makers.

Reservations only. Limited space available.



Legends in Concert

When: 9:30 p.m.

Where: Dick Clark’s American Bandstand Theatre

Phone: 800-374-7469

Two power-packed hours of entertainment await you at Legends in Concert. A special New Year’s Eve show from the world famous live tribute show features a cast of all-star entertainers, assembled on stage in one of the most sought after year-end shows in Branson.


The Haygood’s New Year’s Eve Show

When: 9 p.m.

Where: RFD-TV TheTheatre

Phone: 417-339-4663

Spend NYE at the Haygood Family Show. This talented group of brothers and a sister is one of Branson’s most popular, high-energy shows. The Haygoods entertain night after night with tight harmonies, innovative, energetic choreography, and amazing performances on more than 20 different instruments.


Jim Stafford’s New Year’s Eve Show

When: 9:30 p.m.

Where: The Jim Strafford Theatre

Phone: 417-335-8080

Jim Stafford’s one-of-a-kind New Year’s Eve party will make you smile. Receive a special souvenir video, party hats and favors, a huge balloon drop and light snacks. The party starts at 9:30 p.m. and goes until midnight.



Pierce Arrow Show

When: 9 p.m.

Where: Pierce Arrow Theatre

Phone: 417-336-8742

The Pierce Arrow show features the world’s lowest bass singer according to the Guinness Book of World Records. Jarrett Dougherty is known as one of Branson’s funniest comedians. His many characters include Preacher, Brother Cecil Watkins and the crazed Harry Pitts.



Kirby VanBurch Magic Show

When: 9 p.m.

Where: The Kirby VanBurch Theatre

Phone: 417-337-7140

The Kirby Van Burch Magic Show offers a thrill-a-second production, packed full of disappearing acts, unique illusions and exotic animals, including royal white tigers, leopards, lions.

Tricks include a helicopter appearing in 3 seconds, assistants being cut in half and mind reading.



Grand Jubilee

When: 9 p.m.

Where: Grand Country Square Music Hall

Phone: 888-506-6278

From the first downbeat, audience members say they fall in love with the tight harmonies and dynamic performances of New South. Singing today’s country hits as well as quartet classics from the Oak Ridge Boys to the Statler Brothers, this show is a consistent favorite with audiences. The high energy, comedy and versatility of the entire cast astounds audiences.