My wife and I have always wanted to visit Branson, Missouri and see how good it “really was” and with no thoughts of comparing it to our memorable times in Las Vegas. I also wanted to do so, because of what the Branson community does during Veterans Week each November.
And so, we happily made our way to Branson after our enjoyable visit to Nashville, driving through the beautiful countryside of Tennessee, Kentucky, and Missouri . . . that included crossing the Mississippi River a second time within a mile or so of the first bridge. (The drive through Arkansas from Branson to Houston is equally picturesque.)
Branson is nestled in the Ozark Mountains just a few miles north of the Arkansas border, which makes a wonderful setting for the "Live Music Show Capital of the World" now in its 50th year . . . that offers a great variety of entertainment in the more than 50 performance theaters at reasonable prices. There are also an award-winning theme park, attractions, museums, three lakes, and 12 championship golf courses. (Visit Branson's official site for more information)
Now, there is one problem (a good one) with a visit a to Branson . . . trying to decide on what shows to see and what else to experience relative to how long you will be there.
Oh yeah, having our 14-year-old grandson presented another issue . . . selecting what to do that he should hopefully enjoy, as well. After explaining again why we came to Branson and that we really only had two days this time, he readily agreed to see the highly recommended Haygoods and Baldknobbers shows with the possibility of going to a magic show.
It also meant that my wife and I would not be able to see other shows by favorites of ours this time. Nor were we disappointed in the shows we did see...
We first saw The Haygoods show, which had only the seven very talented brothers (Timothy, Patrick, Dominic, Shawn, Michael, Matthew, Aaron) performing, as their sister, Catherine, was off using her musical abilities elsewhere this night. (These eight siblings ages range from 16 to 32.)
Well, words really cannot properly describe how entertaining the Haygoods are . . . they sing, dance, and play over 20 instruments . . . with most if not all being classical violinists.
They performed country music, pop, Celtic, and did an amazing classical violin rendition of the Beatle's song, Eleanor Rigby.
Dancing and some acrobatic moves occurred through out their show along with good clean humor and a few nice surprises . . . including a riveting tap dance routine. Then there was their wonderful harmony when singing together, which they did many times including with the last song . . . Aaron Tippin's patriotic hit, “Where The Stars & Stripes & The Eagle Fly” (photo top left).
A very nice ending to a performance that was Las Vegas quality, which I told them when we met a few minutes later (photo left).
My wife and grandson also came away with the same impressions . . . with my wife noting their good looks and my grandson saying, “They were awesome!” My grandson also loved how the played the various string instruments, which made him even more determined to take guitar lessons.
In fact, my grandson, Colby, also chose the third show, Cassandre' - The Voice of An Angel, right after she performed several songs during intermission at the Haygoods' show. Cassandre' is the beautiful wife of Tim Haygood, who is the oldest brother. (photo right)
The magic show was forgotten for this Branson stay . . . as it was all about being wowed again by another Haygood. Cassandre' has a gifted voice, which was a delight to hear singing a variety of songs including one of my all time favorites, “Danny Boy”.
She also showed her comedic talent as an older woman character, who sounds like Dolly Parton when singing one of the country music legend's hit songs during a skit. Cassandre' has the voice, the looks, and performance skills to become a major star . . . which I hope she does soon, as I do the Haygoods.
Selecting to see the Baldknobbers show during our initial trip to Branson was an easy decision, as it is the first live show with 50 years of entertaining audiences . . . beginning what Branson has become today.
All the singers and musicians were very good, performing many past and current country music hits with an ending performance involving singing each military branch's song with Old Glory hanging in the background.
Moreover, the hilarious comedians, who make equally funny faces (no teeth), makes this show a must see for those who are not into country music.
And anyone with little ones needs to see if just for the kids' reactions to the comedians interacting with each other, the singers, and host.
They can even have there pictures taken with the comedians, as my grandson did (photo right) . . . which will bring smiles from everyone who sees it including his future children and grandchildren.
David G. Bancroft
Founder / Owner
Author's note... My poem, Little Boys Once, was inspired by seeing my grandson standing next to the World War II memorial sculpture. And my poem, In The Heart Of America, is about Branson. Read my other articles... Branson Veterans Week - 100% Patriotism, Branson Is For Everyone, and Great Time Again During Branson Veterans Week.