If you’re in the market for great, safe, and fun places to raise your family, consider placing the Ozark city of Branson, MO near the top of your list. With 26 neighborhoods offering a wide selection of family-friendly entertainment options, strong schools, and community events, you’ll be able to provide your kids with the local Missouri comforts while expanding their cultural palate. Lets look at all Branson has to offer your family and help you find the best neighborhoods in Branson to raise kids.
Entertaining the kids
Branson’s chief national-recognition comes from its history as a family vacation destination. West 76 Country Boulevard, the main road running throughout Branson, is lined with dozens of stores, museums and other attractions, including Dixie Stampede, Grand Country Fun Spot, the Hollywood Wax Museum, the Titanic Museum, Ripley’s Believe It or Not, and Xtreme Racing Center of Branson. The majority of these attractions border some of the best neighborhoods in Branson like Murphy Addition, Cantwell, Branson North and Lakeview Terrace, which are on the western side of the White River.
I have raised two boys here in Branson, my youngest Kaden you’ll see featured here in many of my blog photos. There’s always a new thrill around the corner for them (sometimes literally!). In recent years, Branson has added places like Adventures Ziplines, Fritz’s Adventure, and the all new Yeti Zone featured in the video above at Bigfoot Action Tower which are a continual source of excitement for residents and tourists alike.
Branson’s fame as a vacation spot has also made it a prime location on many touring circuits, meaning there’s always a number of live shows to enjoy, whether your family’s interested in acrobatics, comedy or musicals.
My son has a blast every summer doing the Pirates and Princess Cruise on the Showboat Branson Belle. They get to dress up and visit with real Disney pirates and princesses all while experiencing a great lunch, and entertainment while they cruise around Table Rock Lake.
But if you’re worried about your kids being too attached to attractions and not getting outside enough, rest easy knowing there’s plenty of outdoor activities and parks to bask in the sun at.
Perfect parks and recreation
Here’s a tip: Invest in laundry detergent that’s guaranteed to remove grass stains from clothes; after spending a day in one of the 16 neighborhood parks, you’re going to need it.
Taking advantage of the scenic White River and its natural recreational spots, most of Branson’s parks are in Big Hollow, Lucia Ridge, Cantwell, Lakeview Terrace, and Cougar Trails. Branson’s hiking trails are highly rated and are fairly kid-friendly, easy hikes. If a good hike doesn’t tire them out, you can pair it with some fishing at Table Rock Lake or kayaking at Lake Taneycomo. Table Rock’s also a great, popular camping location, even for locals.
Branson Hills, the furthest north neighborhood, contains the Branson RecPlex, a sports complex with a playground, outdoor pool, indoor track and multiple gyms. Right next to the RecPlex is Branson Hills Golf Club, one of eight elite golf clubs around the city of Branson.
Branson’s outdoors scene gives kids a valuable education; the Branson Parks & Recreation Department provides residents (both youth and adult) with programs in aquatics and sports. But it’s also important for kids to receive a quality school education, and Branson’s a quality place to get that as well.
Finding the right school
Branson has over 4,500 students enrolled in the seven schools in their public school system, sticking close to ratio recommendations by averaging 16 students per teacher and outperforming the state average in graduation rates. Parents, as well as the wider community, have a variety of resources available to them to stay in the loop regarding their children’s’ education, including an app.
Once your kids have grown and are taking the hand-me-down Ford Mustang off to college, you’ll be thankful for settling in Branson because there’s a number of higher education options nearby. Branson is lucky to be home of the College of the Ozarks, a tuition-free Christian college of 1,500 students who all work at the school. The universities of Missouri State University, Evangel University and Drury University are all just an hour drive away in nearby in Springfield. For students more interested in technical training, Ozarks Technical Community College is also a short drive north.
Finding the best neighborhoods in Branson
Picking the best neighborhoods in Branson comes down to personal preference, but ask yourself a few key questions: How often you’ll be heading down to the river? Is walkability important to you, or are you looking for a quieter, rural experience further away from the city center, like in Acacia or Cross Creek? You can also look at the demographic breakdown of each neighborhood to help decide what life in that specific area might be like. Branson’s comparatively small size and inexpensive housing market also makes it easy to move further away from downtown areas. If you’re looking for the best neighborhoods in Branson to raise kids check out my neighborhood pages with Branson homes for sale and video previews in Horizon Hills and Emory Creek Ranch.