July 3, 2019: 2019’s 4th trip to Branson on July 4th

(click here for today's pictures)

Robby and I woke right up at 6 to some strange sound happening outside. It was like a banging sound but it happened over and over again. It wasn’t a gun shot or firecrackers, nor was it a ball bouncing. My only guess was the someone was cleaning off their shoes banging them together but they must have been some super dirty shoes. Who knows but it went on and on enough that Robby even looked out the window. 

It did take us a while to go back to sleep but we were finally able to. We then slept for about an hour before waking everyone else up. Some moved a bit quicker than others-Reagan is like a snail in the mornings moving so slow while Whitman is like a turtle trying to always cover up his head. Anderson is my morning person though almost all of the time. 

We at our breakfast at the motel. They had a decent selection but no flavored bagels or granola, other than that everyone left pretty happy. We then headed to Silver Dollar City. On our walk to the gate, we could tell that it was going to be a pretty warm day. It really was except these was just plenty of shade I guess because it wasn’t truly bad. 

For some reason, while the kids were waiting in line for their first two roller coasters-Thunderation and Time Traveler, I ended up in the Time Traveler ride. I wasn’t too pleased to be getting on the ride for my second time, but thought if it is time to go then it is time for me to go! The ride wasn’t that bad-well, I really don’t know since I just smiled and closed my eyes the entire time. I did tell Campbell, my ride buddy, that I would open my eyes the next time that I went on that ride.

From there we moved on to the big roller coasters. There were people riding and every single thing. Whitman did ride on Powder Keg again with Anderson. Now, Whitman is in the height that he is supposed to ride with someone 16 or older. Yesterday and this morning they let him ride with Anderson, until their second try this morning. Then they didn’t let them. Robby took a big one for the team and rode the ride with Whitman. Later, we looked at the pictures and noticed that Whitman is pretty stoic during the rides-his face is just the same as if he was riding a carousel-like he has not a care in the world.

There was lots of refilling our drink cup today. The cup was extra but our refills are free for the year so we utilize that thing to the max. We refilled it at least 30 times today-seriously. I am not sure what Robby paid but it was worth every penny. 

The Heltz stayed until noon, and we walked out with them. We drove around Indian Point looking for a spot to have a picnic lunch. We ended up at Table Rock since one place we tried told us that our van was a commercial vehicle and would be 20 dollars. Ha! The state park was a much better choice-playground, picnic tables and bathroom. 

The kids were able to play while we made lunches. After our little break, we headed to the outlets. Now, we didn’t do a whole lot of shopping, but Anderson needed slides. It did take us about 6 stores to finally find him some. They were a bit more than we wanted to spend, but we found him some and that was really all that mattered by that point.

We even found some Disney shirts for our trip-Well, Robby (1), Graham (1), Campbell (2), Keaton (2) and Whitman (2) all found some. The rest of us will have to wait until anther day. From there, Reagan and I wandered around the Vera Bradley store-everything was 70 percent off but we still didn’t buy anything. 

From there we headed to our hotel for the night. We have stayed in this hotel before but are in a different room than last time. This is a large enough room that everyone will have a bed tonight which makes me happy. And in case you were wondering, Robby’s name wasn’t on the hotel marquee tonight!

After a short break and refilling our ice chests, we headed back to Silver Dollar City. Our main plan was to take the tour of the cave. However, when we arrived here was lightening in the area so there was no cave tour right then. We waited in the area for a little bit until they finally did cancel the tours for the day. That made us a bit bummed-the kids were especially bummed when they figured out that the lightening in the area had caused all of the rides to be shut down. 

We sat around for a little bit and even went through the magic shop. We finally decided that maybe we should head on out. When we almost made it to the exit, we could hear the rides running again. So we walked to Wildfire for the kids to do twice. Then we all went down the log ride. 

The log ride was fun, but it did cause us all to be soaked. So when we left the park, we decided that maybe we might should run by the hotel and get some people in dry clothes. The boys and Campbell all were able to take their showers and find some non-wet clothes.

Then we headed towards Branson Landing for an evening of fun. Robby called ahead and ordered some bbq from Famous Daves. We, of course, had our buns in the car along with plates and forks and were ready to go. We circled and circled looking for a parking place. The whole city of Branson had descended on the Landing to see the evening’s fireworks.

Robby eventually had to drop me off to go and pick up our food. After getting the food, we eventually lucked into a parking spot a few blocks from where we wanted to go. We then loaded up the wagon, chairs, blanket and supper and went to find a spot to see the fireworks.

We sat near the Branson Scenic RR on a grassy patch. Robby and I made bbq sandwiches and cornbread muffins for everyone to eat while we waited for the fireworks to begin. There was plenty to eat and plenty of people to watch. 

Soon the fireworks began, and they were pretty good. We actually stayed until the end. The joke is that usually when we are at fireworks, we leave early so we can beat the crowd-especially at Disney World. The crowd was manageable tonight so we didn’t have to leave! 

Robby and some of the kids walked up a bit to get a better view. Anderson, Graham and I stayed with our stuff and in the chairs. We were actually sitting behind some trees-it reminded me of growing up sitting behind trees watching Memorial Day fireworks in Little Rock. The boys and I spent our time naming the fireworks as the popped up-Wedding, Flaming Arrow, Merica, Blooming Flower, Fiesta, etc. 

When the fireworks were over, we did hightail it to the car. We loaded up and headed back to the hotel. The GPS took us through quite a few neighborhoods before we joined the rest of Branson back on the strip. On our drive to the hotel, there were fireworks on all 4 sides of the car. It was certainly something to see.

We did joke that we probably could have set at tables in our hotel room and seen plenty of fireworks. Once we were back in the room, the last few folks took their shower while Robby dropped some clothes in the washer. Laundry is a hassle on a trip, but with wet clothes from the park, we really almost had to do it today or the car would have been a stinky mess. 

The kids were in bed and asleep in by 11:20ish just as it was time to pull the laundry out of the dryer. Tomorrow will be another great day...I hope!

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