There was a time, when I first came to Branson over 30 years ago, that driving through town mid-October through mid-April was like a ghost town. Over the years, new seasons were developed that helped create a longer tourist season. Still...there were a few weeks after the beautiful, breath-taking, crazy busy Ozark Mountain Christmas Season and just before the Spring-Breakers came to town, that Branson was fairly dormant. “Like a ghost town!” people would say. Then more attractions came, and the shopping improved, top-notch golf courses were built, and some of my favorite shows decided to stay open all year! It seemed as if those ghost town days were a thing of the past…
Businesses are closed. Travellers are scarce. Town is quiet. One might think morale is low...that town won’t recover...that visitors won’t return. This is not the case! In our little town, everywhere I turn, I see businesses amping up to provide even more options to visitors once the COVID-19 crisis subsides and leisure travel safely resumes. Online tools are readily available to help businesses continue working remotely. I see business competitors helping each other. I see signs of hope and encouragement posted on business marquees. Scriptures are posted on FaceBook. Helpful hints have been posted to help those at home navigate the unchartered waters of homeschooling and working from home, social distancing, and extreme caution when only going out when necessary. Even humorous memes are helping provide comedic relief from the health and economic crisis, the stress of lost wages due to furloughs and temporarily closed businesses. Church services online and good old fashioned letter-writing provide a connection, hope and encouragement to those in isolation. Neighborhoods are taking care of each
other by leaving groceries, gift cards, and notes of encouragement on doorsteps.
Branson is a resilient town full of creative, brilliant, Godly people who work hard to provide and maintain wholesome entertainment, great values, and memorable experiences. This is not a ghost-town! This is a spirit-filled town that lives and breathes the love of Christ to residents and visitors alike. Our town will boom again with guests and traffic and laughter and goodwill. In the meantime, I’m humbled and extremely grateful to be working for a company that personifies the very values that make up this town and this country. Undoubtedly I am exactly where I am supposed to be, for such a time as this, in the abundantly blessed town of Branson, Missouri.