No trip to Branson, Missouri, would be complete without a visit to Silver Dollar City. This beloved and popular 1880’s-themed park opened its doors in 1960. Since then, the park has grown to cover 61 acres in the Ozarks hills just west of Branson. The park is now home to over 30 rides and attractions and twice as many shops and restaurants.
One of the things that sets Silver Dollar City apart from other theme parks is its resident craftspeople. Local craftspeople have shops right in the park, and guests can visit jewelers, potters, glass blowers, weavers, and more. Even better, you can watch some of these artists create their work right there in the shop!
Fall is a great time to visit Silver Dollar City. Throughout September and October, the park hosts its National Crafts and Cowboy Festival. This exciting festival celebrates craftspeople from all over the country. The festival also pays tribute to cowboys and the American west. The National Crafts and Cowboy Festival plays host to 125 different visiting craftspeople joining the 100 resident craftspeople who already call Silver Dollar City home. These visiting artists will show off their arts and crafts skills including textile art like weaving and quilt making; visual arts like painting, photography, and drawing; pottery and ceramics; metal working, glass art and woodworking; heritage crafts such as candle making, basketry, and book binding; jewelry making; millinery; home décor; and more. It’s the perfect time to find your loved ones unique gifts for the upcoming Christmas season!
In addition to the talented artists and craftspeople you’ll see during the National Crafts and Cowboy Festival, you’ll also be able to experience a bit of the great American west. Back by popular demand, the Wild West Show will be thrilling audiences for another season from the Red Gold Heritage Hall. This show follows in the tradition of Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show which wowed and thrilled audiences all over the world from 1883 until 1913, celebrating everything to do with the American West. Silver Dollar City’s Wild West Show is hosted by trick roper and bullwhip artist AJ Silver and features performances by 6-time world champion hoop dancer Nakotah, David Rosaire and his Perky Pekes, and the incredible Western Trick Riders. There’s even a thrilling patriotic finale capped off with a flyover from an American Bald Eagle!
Animal lovers will delight at “horse whisperer” Fred Woehl of the Bureau of Land Management’s Wild Horse and Burro Program. During his “Extreme Mustang Makeovers” show, Fred will introduce you to the wild mustangs he’s trained and he’ll even let you see some of his techniques. If cowboy art is what interests you, be sure to stop by Buck Taylor’s Cowboy Emporium. Gunsmoke star and western artist Buck Taylor has assembled an impressive lineup of cowboy and western artists including horseshoe artist Tony Rice, silversmith Regina Smart, wood carver Richard Person, and many more.
Nationally-recognized chef Kent Rollins has appeared on Food Network shows such as Chopped and Throwdown with Bobby Flay. At the National Crafts and Cowboy Festival, he demonstrates the art of authentic chuck wagon cooking in front of a live audience. During his energetic show, he tells cowboy stories and shares poetry and humor, all from his restored 1876 Studebaker wagon. A barn dance occurs daily at the Carousel Barn and features music from Silver Dollar City’s own beloved Horsecreek Band. You can also hear some of the best country and western music around at the Riverfront Playhouse, including acts the Kristyn Harris Band, Miss Devon and the Outlaw, Belinda Gail, the Home Rangers, and the Malpass Brothers. With a lineup like that, you’re sure to hear something you like!
Come celebrate a slice of American culture and history at Silver Dollar City’s National Crafts and Cowboy Festival. During your visit you’ll see expert craftspeople demonstrating their art, see real-life cowboys and majestic mustangs, and eat some of the best food around. It’s sure to be an experience you’ll never forget!