Chateau Charmont

Campus Blog

Top 10 day trips for Evangel students

February 12th, 2013 | Lauren Simms

A couple of weeks ago, I brought you my blog post So, is there anything to do in Springfield, Missouri? listing my Top 10 things for Evangel students to do in our great city. As promised, I’m back with my Top 10 list for activities outside of Springfield — these great sites are all within a short enough drive to leave after breakfast in the Caf and return by curfew.

1. Lambert’s Café. Located in Ozark, Missouri, this is a unique dining experience and the only home of “throwed rolls.” Also, did I mention free pass-arounds (like fried okra, black-eyed peas, fried potatoes) before your meal? The Travel Channel didn’t name Lambert’s one of the “Top 10 Places to Pig Out” for nothing. With their 70th anniversary this year, you know it’s gotta’ be good! (Hint: Go early and expect a wait over an hour during peak times.)

2. Sunset Drive-in Theatre. Take a 30-minute drive out to Aurora, Missouri, and enjoy a movie from the confines of your own car. Sunset started in 1951and is still known as the best entertainment in the area. Ticket $7 per person or $21 per carload (3-8 people).

3. Chateau Charmant. Just a 45-minute drive from Evangel, this magnificent  medieval castle is a must-see. Inspired by a 14th-century French chateau, the website boasts it is “the largest castle built by the smallest crew in the world.” It’s a popular venue for weddings, but tours are also a blast. Tickets $7.50 for adults and $5 for students.

Moonshine Beach

Moonshine Beach is the largest sand beach in Southwest Missouri.

4. Moonshine Beach. When you think of the Ozarks, you might not think of long stretches of sandy beaches, but our beautiful lakes area does have one amazing beach you’ve got to check out. (And, no worries, there is no actual moonshine, so this is a totally Evangel-approved activity!) Moonshine Beach is one of the many U.S. Army Corp of Engineers recreational areas on the lake. Come early to snag a picnic table and enjoy sunbathing, swimming, beach volleyball and a boat dock. $5 per carload.

5. The Hollywood Wax Museum in Branson puts you face-to-face with more than 120 celebrity wax figures. Take friends and snap photos … and try not to freak out when you start talking to wax people! Tickets are $17.95 at the door or $14.95 purchased online.

6. The Branson Landing. Located on the waterfront of Lake Taneycomo in downtown Branson, you’ll find an outdoor mall that offers the best shopping experience in the area. It’s a fun place to shop, eat and people watch. And you can often catch shows and special events by the water front.

7. Silver Dollar City. I’m gonna be honest, SDC will set you back a few bucks, but it’s totally worth the splurge at least once each school year (or better yet, get a season pass and go as much as you want). Nestled in the Ozark hills near Branson, this theme park takes you back to the 1880’s. Enjoy some seriously adventurous roller coasters, quaint festivals and good ole’ home cookin’ (don’t leave without having a funnel cake)! Ticket price (with tax): $62.34

8. Doennig Sport Swings and Paintball. Located in Ozark, Missouri, on Jackson Spring Road, you’ll find an awesome place to paintball, go on a hayride, and try out a barn swing. This is a truly unique Ozarks experience.

9. National Tiger Sanctuary. The NTS is just a short 30-minute drive away in Saddlebrook, Missouri. This nonprofit organization was created in 2000 to provide a protected environment to safely house tigers and other big cats. The animals can only be seen on staff-led educational tours. Tickets are $20 for a 75-minute “Awareness Tour,” which will take you just 3-feet away from the animals. Additional tour options are listed on the website.

10. 160 Grand Prix. About 12 miles from EU in Nixa is a place where you can either go-chart or put-put or even do both.Take a carload of your friends and race each other to the finish line. Tickets $5 for go-kart and $5 for mini golf.

Want more? There are lots more ideas on the Things to Do page of our website.

Lauren Simms

Communication Studies Major | Class of 2013

Lauren, a Communication Studies major, is a commuter student from Springfield, Missouri. She is a work-study for Marketing Enrollment, a member of a START team, and an EU Student Host. She encourages students to study hard, get involved and enjoy every minute.

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