Branson’s Entertainment Scene Sparks Record Boom

BRANSON, Mo., March 23 /PRNewswire/ — With more than 57,000 theater seats in 49 state-of-the-art theaters and over 100 live shows, many of them headlined by legendary stars whose Top 40 hits, movies and TV shows beckon the next generation of travelers, Branson’s popularity as an entertainment mecca sparked a record $173.5 million in new construction permits in 2005.

Branson’s first boom in the early 1990s established the southwest Missouri town (population 7,000) as the Live Music Capital of America and this year, the world watches as Branson booms again. See .

“Visitors will be treated to an unprecedented variety of live entertainment and vacation thrills in 2006,” said Ross Summers, president and CEO of the Branson/Lakes Area Chamber of Commerce and Convention & Visitors Bureau. He cited these developments:

— The $420 million Branson Landing shopping, dining, Hilton Hotel
lodging and waterfront lifestyle development, the largest of its kind
in the state’s history, is set to open beginning May 26.

– Silver Dollar City is developing an all-new area called The Grand
Exposition which will include 10 new family thrill rides, doubling the
number of rides at the theme park.

– The new interactive Titanic: The World’s Largest Museum Attraction is
set to open in March, with April openings to include Dick Clark’s
American Bandstand Theater Complex starring Bill Medley of the
Righteous Brothers and other ’50s and ’60s rock legends.

– Internationally-known entertainers appearing for limited engagements
in 2006 include B.B. King, Martina McBride, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Regis
Philbin, Petula Clark, Crystal Gayle, Glen Campbell, Kenny Rogers, Lee
Greenwood, Mel Tillis, Ray Price, Ronnie McDowell, The Osmond
Brothers, Debbie Reynolds, Neil Sedaka, Daniel O’Donnell and many

– Also, these entertainers will join the likes of long-time Branson
headliners such as Andy Williams, The Lennon Sisters, the Oak Ridge
Boys, Mickey Gilley, Jim Stafford, Yakov Smirnoff, Dino Kartsonakis,
Buck Trent, and Shoji Tabuchi.

Baby boomers and their families will be treated to even more of the country, pop and rock n’ roll music they grew up with performed by stars like Pam Tillis, Larry Gatlin and the Gatlin Brothers, Paul Revere and the Raiders, The Comets, Fabian, the new Liverpool Legends Beatles Tribute show, and The Road to Rock show.

Families of all ages find music, comedy, magic, Broadway-style production shows and more at places like the newly-constructed New Shanghai Theatre, which opened in 2005 to celebrate the Acrobats of China’s eighth season in Branson.

Yakov Smirnoff, America’s most famous Russian comedian, says, “All of the new shows enhance Branson’s musical diversity, which is already strong. Only in America can a Russian and a Japanese own a theater in the middle of the Ozarks!” For complete article, go to .

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