Author Topic: Branson Debates Diversification  (Read 18044 times)

shavethewhales

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Branson Debates Diversification
« on: June 04, 2014, 07:04:40 PM »
The debate over how to diversify Branson keeps chugging along: http://www.npr.org/2014/05/26/315978148/ozark-tourist-town-branson-mo-debates-how-to-diversify?ft=1&f=

I'm not a fan of casinos for so many reasons. I'm not sure they would necessarily destroy Branson since so much of the town is already a massive blight of strip mall developments, but they would bring in some sinister elements. That said, the pressure is building for Branson to put up or shut up. While general branson tourism has been ticking up, so many individual attractions are having a pretty tough time and it feels like the attractions industry is limping along. It needs a shot in the arm somehow - we need another big name attraction to make it worth flying in.

cheesehead57

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Re: Branson Debates Diversification
« Reply #1 on: June 04, 2014, 09:05:26 PM »
I agree with you Shave, but don't think casinos are the  answer either.

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Re: Branson Debates Diversification
« Reply #2 on: June 04, 2014, 09:09:32 PM »
There are plenty of places for that stuff, and we avoid them all.

Branson does not need to strive to be like everyone else.  It must remain unique in its offerings.
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mhguy77

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Re: Branson Debates Diversification
« Reply #3 on: June 04, 2014, 10:33:29 PM »
Quote
but they would bring in some sinister elements. That said, the pressure is building for Branson to put up or shut up.
Several years when Rockaway Beach tried to get gambling I thought is was a good idea.  As long as the gambling was strictly limited in advertisements " in " Branson and it were kept out of the " family view".  I don't think it would be such a bad addition done properly.
I could certainly foresee public transport to take you to the casinos provided of corse by the casinos at their expense.  Mom and the kinds can stay at White Water or SDC and Dad can play a little 21.  It would seem to bring more entertainment with it as well.
The Grand Palace is a shame sitting there empty. It was also brought up that they start to book touring stage productions that could draw from the entire area.
I am not sure if this would work but man I would prefer this over the rap scare we had several years back.
What do you think are some possible new attractions for the Branson area?

Hollwood

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Re: Branson Debates Diversification
« Reply #4 on: June 05, 2014, 06:15:57 AM »
 Mom and the kinds can stay at White Water or SDC and Dad can play a little 21.[/quote]

That would be the problem...
« Last Edit: June 05, 2014, 06:17:54 AM by Hollywood »

mhguy77

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Re: Branson Debates Diversification
« Reply #5 on: June 05, 2014, 06:36:12 AM »
Hollywood I completely understand, I myself don't gamble.  I have dropped a few dollars at a machine on a ship but its too hard to come by to give it away like that.
I guess I should have been a little more clear.  If they were able to put gambling in Rockaway Beach out of sight from the family friendly city of Branson and keep out  advertising in Branson it would be a much better alternative to letting it in Branson.  I am not a gambling advocate but if it is going to be around place it out of sight of the family's.
Bus the people over there to avoid the drinking and driving.  I  am not saying this is ideal but it may be a better alternative.
« Last Edit: June 05, 2014, 07:27:01 PM by mhguy77 »

runner1960

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Re: Branson Debates Diversification
« Reply #6 on: June 05, 2014, 07:49:16 AM »
Gambling would work if the state laws were adapted, but that would take a lot of time. I have heard the gambling horror stories, but I think it is just the moral police out in force. In my opinion Branson is going to need to go for a younger Demographic. The old hillbilly shows will not draw the young consumers. My daughters will not go near the place. A mixed entertainment district with micro breweries and a good mix of restaurants and nightclubs would help. Also rap is not all bad. The PTB in the community caused a big ado over nothing a few years back that set back efforts to upgrade the entertainment in the area. But, what do you expect when your mayor is a show owner. Also, how about taking the celebration city site and turn it into a Aquarium , white water, winter time complex with a ice rink and snow skiing in the winter. A great addition, but HFE will not sell to a competitor and seem to have no interest in developing a new concept. Touring acts and festival style music events would also help.

LaJoe

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Re: Branson Debates Diversification
« Reply #7 on: June 05, 2014, 09:22:47 AM »
I have become a fan of bluegrass, and have come to learn that you can book very high quality bluegrass bands for much lower fees than country music acts. I would like to a see a Branson theater bring in the best national bluegrass bands for a week or so at a time, with perhaps an anchor bluegrass band that plays in the theater every day. I know the Starlite is doing that a little bit, but I would like to see it really expanded.

Do y'all think that would be a good idea?

Preachin_Bill

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Re: Branson Debates Diversification
« Reply #8 on: June 05, 2014, 09:55:05 AM »
Whether it happens sooner or later, gambling is the end-all in Branson.  It will happen some day as a last ditch effort.  Someone will push for it and it will slowly build steam.  Don't get me wrong--I hate this idea, but it's going to happen someday.

They need to sell the CC area, but they won't.  They should turn the whole area into a very large outdoor theatre where they can bring in BIG acts and maybe have a BIG music festival every year.  I also like what Runner said about turning it into an aquarium.  If done right (and by right I mean BIG like the aquarium in Omaha's Henry Doorly Zoo) it will definitely get people through the turnstyles.

I'm not sure what can save these smaller theaters.  The problem is that all these shows basically (I know there are minor differences) follow the same act as the Baldknobbers Jubilee, etc.  Sing some songs, play some fiddles, put a yokel hillbilly out there to tell some jokes, have some kids play fiddles, sing some gospel, have a sing-a-long, and show's over.  That formula is used too much.

I'm not sure if this has been done before, but why not try to get some Broadway shows, or Broadway-style shows?  I bet that if someone had the capital and the guts to invest in hiring writers to come up with a musical that is themed to the area (hillbilly's, the west, history, etc.) it would really take off.  Now this would be different than the SOTH.  That is an outdoor theater that uses local actors and is an adaptation of a book.  What I'm talking about is a real Broadway-style musical with all the glitz, glamour, and talent.  It would sell out every night and then some, and could lead to more.

But maybe I'm wrong in all of this.  Maybe it's been tried before, or maybe it wouldn't work.  But the same old shows with different names thing isn't working.
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Gilligan

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Re: Branson Debates Diversification
« Reply #9 on: June 05, 2014, 09:56:28 AM »
What is Lake of the Ozarks area doing to keep it going?  I know very little about that area as I would never put a boat the size of mine on that crazy lake. Branson is always bustling when I am there. From the looks of crowds, it doesn't seem that they are hurting. I realize that businesses are hurting, especially shows, but I wonder if the crowds have migrated to the lakes instead. Believe me, I think lake traffic has doubled lately!  We make marina reservations months in advance to be assured of dock space. I've seen wait times of an hour to get boats in the water at ramps and lines at the marinas to purchase gas. It wasn't like this 10 years ago.

Preachin_Bill

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Re: Branson Debates Diversification
« Reply #10 on: June 05, 2014, 10:01:51 AM »
What is Lake of the Ozarks area doing to keep it going?  I know very little about that area as I would never put a boat the size of mine on that crazy lake. Branson is always bustling when I am there. From the looks of crowds, it doesn't seem that they are hurting. I realize that businesses are hurting, especially shows, but I wonder if the crowds have migrated to the lakes instead. Believe me, I think lake traffic has doubled lately!  We make marina reservations months in advance to be assured of dock space. I've seen wait times of an hour to get boats in the water at ramps and lines at the marinas to purchase gas. It wasn't like this 10 years ago.

This is truth.  Every year my dad mentions that the boat traffic is getting heavier.  He always says that when he would take the boat out thirty years ago it was nothing but fishing boats, but now you can't go out there on the weekends without bumping into somebody.  Table Rock is not struggling to get visitors, that's for sure.
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chittlins

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Re: Branson Debates Diversification
« Reply #11 on: June 05, 2014, 10:36:13 AM »
My son is 11, plays little league. He is no where good enough to play on some of the traveling squads but my Brother and lived on the road in the summer playing for traveling teams out of Memphis all the way up to American Legion ball. My my weeks around the complex here at Walker Park in Fayetteville, I've brought up the Red Roof proposal to fellow parents with kids that will join up with a team that travels after league and it's got a positive response most really think the replica aspect 9 the ball fields will be cool.

A resort style casino is the only kind I'd ever want to see at Branson not just a 150 room hotel tower, gaming floor and small performance hall one. Think of one that takes its design cues from the Ozark with a nice golf course, shooting range, spa and so on. Heck, just convince Mr. Bass Pro to do it.

I've shared other thoughts numerous times about the CC Area and the need for a grander scale indoor waterpark type of resort like the Wilderness at the Smokies.

RJW

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Re: Branson Debates Diversification
« Reply #12 on: June 05, 2014, 02:44:33 PM »
The idea of a casino in the Branson area, no matter how much it would benefit the economy is not even possible. In 2004 the proposal to allow a casino on the White River lakes was voted down. In part, people who would be against any casino, any place. Also because of blind opposition, and greed of those who think something successfully drawing tourists to Rockaway Beach would cost them business in Branson. The truth is quite the opposite. A casino in Rockaway Beach, Kimberling City, or anywhere close to Branson would draw people who never considered going to Branson to the entire area. They would go to Branson for restaurants, shopping, and just to see what it is all about.
Secondly, in 2008, the laws in Missouri were changed limiting casinos to those existing, or under construction.
It may not be impossible to change the law, but its about as likely as Rush Limbaugh being invited to be the keynote speaker at the Democrat National Convention!

chittlins

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Re: Branson Debates Diversification
« Reply #13 on: June 05, 2014, 03:32:24 PM »
The idea of a casino in the Branson area, no matter how much it would benefit the economy is not even possible. In 2004 the proposal to allow a casino on the White River lakes was voted down. In part, people who would be against any casino, any place. Also because of blind opposition, and greed of those who think something successfully drawing tourists to Rockaway Beach would cost them business in Branson. The truth is quite the opposite. A casino in Rockaway Beach, Kimberling City, or anywhere close to Branson would draw people who never considered going to Branson to the entire area. They would go to Branson for restaurants, shopping, and just to see what it is all about.
Secondly, in 2008, the laws in Missouri were changed limiting casinos to those existing, or under construction.
It may not be impossible to change the law, but its about as likely as Rush Limbaugh being invited to be the keynote speaker at the Democrat National Convention!

I bet no one thought Harrison /Boone Co Ar would be wet 4 years ago either.

I get the Herchends are against it and all but if the right person came along and presented a proposal where the casino was just a part of the overall project the wheels to change the laws could be put I motion again.

chittlins

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Re: Branson Debates Diversification
« Reply #14 on: June 05, 2014, 03:35:48 PM »
Anyone notice that the Mr. Bass Pro is redoing parts of Dogwood Canyon too.