⛈ Loving The Ozarks Life ⛈
Actress Anne Heche died of a brain injury and severe burns after speeding and crashing her car into a home in the residential Mar Vista neighborhood on Friday, August 5th. The home she hit caught on fire. Heche was dragged out of her vehicle and was taken to "Grossman Burn Center" at West Hills Hospital in Los Angeles. Heche died after being taken off life support.
Heche was 53-year-old and an Emmy Award-winning actress. She is best known for her roles in 1990s films, Volcano and the remake of Psycho as well as Donnie Brasco and Six Days, Seven Nights.
At the Last Regular Board of Alderman Meeting, the City of Branson approved 15 different resolutions that authorize the city to apply for "ARPA" grants.
The following is a release from the city of Branson website regarding the amounts and where the funds would go to for the city.
BRANSON, Mo – The Branson Board of Aldermen approved 15 different resolutions at their last regular meeting on July 12, 2022, that authorize the City to apply for Missouri American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds that total $15,008,000 for Utilities and $4,897,600 for Public Works and Engineering.
The City of Branson has submitted these grant applications and is now waiting to hear from the State if they will be awarded. This is supposed to happen in October. These are matching grants. If all grants are approved, the city would contribute $4,966,400. These 15 projects are listed below:
Dewey Bald Water System Improvements Project
Neighborhood Water Line Replacement Project
Lift Stations #10 And #34 Project
Cured-In-Place-Pipe Lining Of Sewer Mains and Manhole Rehabilitation Project
Lift Station #46 – Install Pumps and Controls Project
Lift Station #17 – Force Main Replacement Project
Lead Service Line Inventory Project
River Valley Estates Stormwater Improvement Project
Celtic Bridge Project
Caudill Way Low Water Crossing Project
Fall Creek RV Estates Project Stormwater Improvement Project
Eiserman Street/Lakewood Estates Subdivision Stormwater Improvement Project
Cliff Drive Stormwater Improvement Project
Brook Court Stormwater Improvement Project
Hiawatha Heights Subdivision Stormwater Improvement Project
To read more about each proposed project and the ARPA funds requested, click on the “HTML Agenda Packet” for the July 12, 2022, Board of Aldermen Regular meeting in the Agenda & Minutes section of the city’s website, BransonMo.Gov.
ARPA is a $1.9 trillion federal aid package passed by Congress in 2021 to provide financial aid to families, governments, businesses, schools, non-profits and others impacted by the pandemic. Of that $1.9 trillion, $350 billion is going to state and local governments as part of the Fiscal Recovery Fund.
Cities can use ARPA funds to:
Respond to the public health emergency or its negative economic impacts;
Provide premium pay to eligible workers;
For the provision of governmental services to the extent of the reduction in revenue due to COVID-19; and
Invest in water, sewer, stormwater, and lead service line inventory.
Cities cannot use ARPA funds to:
Offset a reduction in taxes;
For deposits into pension funds;
To fund debt service;
To fund legal settlements or judgments;
For deposits into rainy-day funds or financial reserves.
The City of Branson Recently Finished Segment 3 Of the Improvements From Presley's to the Branson Ferris Wheel. The City Has now approved to continue to Segments 1 & 2.
The following is a release from the City of Branson regarding the approval to move to the next steps.
BRANSON, Mo – In a double read, the Branson Board of Aldermen unanimously approved Bill No. 6180, an ordinance approving a contract to design and improve segments one and two of W. 76 Country Blvd at their last regular meeting on July 12, 2022.
This is the next step to continue to revitalize W. 76 Country Blvd by improving the safety and aesthetics of Branson’s entertainment district. W. 76 Country Blvd is divided into six segments. The city just finished segment three, which starts from the Branson Ferris Wheel to the Presleys’ Country Jubilee Theater. Segments one and two run from Shepherd of the Hills Expy to the Ferris Wheel. (See attached phase segments map).
Three Request for Qualifications (RFQ’s) were received for this project and evaluated by staff, members of the 76ECID Board as well as a citizen stakeholder team. After presentations and interviews, it was recommended to move forward with Great River Associates, Inc. for the professional design consulting services not to exceed the amount of $2,032,815.00. This amount includes land surveying, data collection, infrastructure design, stakeholder engagement, creative design, funding, bidding, construction administration and project management for Segments one and two of W. 76 Country Blvd.
This renewed effort to improve the safety and aesthetics of W. 76 Country Blvd is the result of a positive partnership between the 76ECID and the local government at City Hall to continue the W. 76 Country Blvd revitalization project.
Interested in Joining Branson Citizens Police Acadamy? The City of Branson is taking applications for their 2022 Classes. You will get to learn the many experiences of the Police Department. To find out more information, check out the release from the City below to apply!
BRANSON, Mo – The Branson Police Department is now accepting applications for its 2022 Citizen Police Academy, a program in which community members are offered an opportunity for a deeper understanding of the mission, values and operations of the Branson Police Department.
The behind-the-scenes look will offer hands-on experiences and insights into the nature of the Branson Police Department. The 12-week program begins September 1, 2022, and will be held every Thursday evening through November 17, 2022, from 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.
Participants will learn about a wide range of topics including police patrol procedures, criminal investigations, crime scene processing, traffic enforcement, DWI enforcement and SWAT. Participants will also get to meet the K-9 team and take a tour of the department. At the conclusion of the program, graduates will have the opportunity to ride with a police officer and experience policing from an Officer’s perspective.
Applicants must be at least 21 years old and have no felony convictions. Priority will be given to people who live or work in the City of Branson. Space is limited to 30 people and will fill up quickly. Applications must be submitted to the police department by August 1, 2022.
More information is under the Special Programs section of the Branson Police Department’s website, BransonMo.Gov/Police. Apply online, HERE. For questions regarding the Citizens Police Academy, please contact Officer Donathan at firstname.lastname@example.org or 417-337-8503.
The City of Branson has shared that they are in the early stages of possibly purchasing the old White House Theater for the future home of the Branson Police Dept and Public Safety Complex.
The following is from a Release from the City of Branson regarding the possible purchase.
The City has been needing a larger building for the Police Dept and this may be the answer as compared to another option they had behind the Tanger Mall Outlet.
Via The City of Branson
BRANSON, Mo – In a closed special meeting on July 1, 2022, the Branson Board of Aldermen unanimously voted to start the initial process to purchase the White House Theatre, located at 2255 Gretna Rd., to serve as a Public Safety Complex and the new headquarters of the Branson Police Department. This initial process includes a “due diligence” phase.
Not only will the facility be repurposed as the Branson Police Department Headquarters, but it may also eventually provide space for Branson Fire Rescue Administration Offices, training facilities for Police and Fire personnel, a new Emergency Operations Center and facilities for community use. The 65,000 sq. foot building cost $2.5 million and would be purchased through the reserve funds of the half-cent Public Safety Sales Tax that was passed in 2017.
While the Branson Police Department previously purchased land for a new police station at 311 Forsythe St. in 2018 with the Public Safety Sales Tax, plans to build a station were put on hold due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The purchase and repurposing of this new public safety complex will save the city millions of dollars from the original proposed plan as it is more than double the square footage of the 30,000 sq. foot original building plan and will relocate the police into a much-needed new home many years ahead of the original estimated timeline. If the sale of the new building goes through, the City will sell the land previously purchased and will put the money towards the purchase of the new Public Safety Complex.
This project is in its very early stages and no timelines for remodeling or opening date have been set. This project will also involve future community input on further uses of the facility.
The City of Branson Invites the Public Join them Wednesday July 13th at 10 AM CDT To Celebrate A Major Milestone! Learn More In The Following Release From The City of Branson Missouri.
Celebrating the completion of improvements to Branson’s Entertainment District
BRANSON, Mo – The City of Branson and the 76 Entertainment Community District (76ECID) invite you to join us on world-famous W. 76 Country Blvd to celebrate a major milestone in the efforts to improve the safety and visual aesthetics of Branson’s Entertainment District on Wednesday, July 13, 2022, at 10:00 a.m. in front of Presley’s Country Jubilee, located at 2920 W. 76 Country Blvd.
With the completion of the undergrounding of the utilities earlier this month and the new street lights that were turned on for the first time, June 30 -- all scheduled improvements on W. 76 Country Blvd from the Branson Ferris Wheel to Presley’s Country Jubilee Theater are complete! These improvements include better sidewalks, professional landscaping, pedestrian crosswalks, a well-lit corridor and NO OVERHEAD UTILITIES.
We’re just getting started! This is the first of several celebrations to mark major milestones in the renewed effort to enhance the safety aspects and visual aesthetics of W. 76 Country Blvd. segment by segment. This renewed effort is the result of a positive partnership between the 76ECID and the local government at City Hall to continue the W. 76 Country Blvd revitalization project.
Please join us at Re-creation Celebration #1 for brief comments from key project participants and partners, a ceremonial ribbon cutting and to learn about ongoing plans for entertainment district renovations.
Via The City of Branson
Good News For Our Locals & Tourists From The City of Branson Missouri
BRANSON, Mo – At 9:00 a.m. on June 30, 2022, the Gretna road reconstruction was completed, road crews have removed the barricades and Gretna Rd is open to all traffic one day ahead of the expected July 1 completion date.
This road closed to through traffic Tuesday, May 31, 2022, as a result of a substantial 12-inch water main break at Gretna Road and N. Wildwood Dr. that occurred on April 29, 2022. The water main break caused extensive damage to the road.
This project was one of the biggest road reconstructions for the City of Branson to date. It was several hundred feet of roadway with 2,262 tons of asphalt.
“Thank you to our community for your patience with this major undertaking, as your tax dollars went to work. We know how inconvenient it was to close this major arterial roadway. Our entire Public Works and Engineering Department staff and the contractors, Blevins Asphalt and A.T. Urban Development, all worked hard to get a lot of work done in the shortest amount of time possible. Getting that amount of work done with the scope and size of the project in that amount of time is incredible,” said Public Works and Engineering Director, Keith Francis.
While city crews immediately performed what repairs they could with the resources available after the initial water main break, upon a thorough investigation of the damages, the repairs needed included road repair and replacement as well as sidewalk, curb and gutter repairs.
If you are local resident or visitor to the Branson area and frequently use Gretna Road from North Wildwood to Roark Valley Road, then this should make happy knowing that the City is on track to have this section of road reopen by July 1st 2022. The following Release from the City of Branson explains more on this project.
Via The City Of Branson Mo.
BRANSON, Mo – The contractor working on the Gretna Road reconstruction between North Wildwood Dr. and Roark Valley Rd. has completed the concrete curb and gutter work which now has to cure before placing the asphalt and is on track to open as scheduled on July 1, 2022.
This road closed to through traffic Tuesday, May 31, 2022, as a result of a substantial 12-inch water main break at Gretna Road and N. Wildwood Dr. that occurred on April 29, 2022. The water main break caused extensive damage to the road. While city crews immediately performed what repairs they could with the resources available, upon a thorough investigation of the damages, the repairs needed included road repair and replacement as well as sidewalk, curb and gutter repairs.
Signs are in place to detour traffic around the road closure and to meet traffic safety standards during the closure. Motorists are asked to be aware of signage, traffic cones and work crews in the marked Work Zone.
This road work is weather dependent. For questions regarding this project, please contact the City of Branson Public Works Department at 417-337-8559.
If you enjoy a city auction, then you will be happy to know that the City of Branson is conducting an online City auction of surplus property that is no longer needed by the City. A release from the City of Branson below informs you on how to participate in the Auction. Keep in mind that the auction concludes on July 12th, 2022.
Via The City of Branson
BRANSON, Mo – The City of Branson is conducting an online auction of surplus property that ends on Tuesday, July 12, 2022.
Items up for auction include multiple vehicles, a backhoe, automotive parts and other items that are no longer needed by the City.
The City has contracted with Purple Wave Auction, a company that specializes in internet-only auctions, to give bidders the chance to view items, read descriptions, see pictures and place bids from the convenience of their computers.
All items for this government surplus auction will be listed on www.purplewave.com. Instructions on how to register to bid are located on Purple Wave’s website. Additional questions can be directed to Purple Wave at 866-608-9283.
Via The City Of Branson Mo.
BRANSON, Mo – The City of Branson will begin installing street and pedestrian lights in the nighttime hours from Presley’s Country Jubilee to the Branson Ferris Wheel starting at 9:00 p.m. on Sunday, June 12, 2022.
This project is for the installation of street light and pedestrian light poles and fixtures in the corridor. It is the result of the positive partnership between the 76 Entertainment Community Improvement District (CID) and the local government at City Hall and is an important step to continuing the 76 revitalization project.
All construction work will be performed nightly from 9:00 p.m. through 7:00 a.m. Weather permitting, the project is expected to be complete by the end of June 2022.
This project will involve temporary lane closures, equipment trucks and crews working in the area. Great effort is being taken to ensure minimal impact on businesses, customers and properties in the area. Drivers are encouraged to be mindful of signs and workers in the marked Work Zone.
Via The City of Branson
BRANSON, Mo – The Branson Parks & Recreation Department is proud to offer a Memorial Bench and Memorial Tree Program to offer citizens an opportunity to memorialize and celebrate a friend or family member by dedicating a bench or tree in their honor, with a personalized nameplate.
Memorial Benches are placed in city parks and along city trails for community members and park visitors to enjoy for years to come. A commemorative nameplate will be placed on the bench and exact placement is determined by parks department staff based on need, usage, and accessibility. The cost of the Memorial Bench Program is $500.00 and includes the cost of the bench, nameplate and installation. Benches are made from 100% recycled plastic and rubber which makes them durable and weather resistant.
Memorial Trees are also placed in city parks and along city trails. A commemorative plaque will be added at the Branson Community Center with the plaques of other Memorial Trees. Park staff will determine the species and placement of the trees and the tree will be cared for as a part of the parks tree management plan. The cost for the Memorial Tree Program is $250.00 and trees are planted in the spring or fall each year.
For more information on these Memorial Programs, contact Branson Parks & Recreation Landscape Specialist, Amy Jackson, at 417-335-2368 or visit the Parks & Trails section of our website, https://bransonparksandrecreation.com/
Via The City Of Branson Mo.
BRANSON, Mo – A section of Gretna Road between North Wildwood Dr. and the entrance of B.A.T. Boys Automotive located at 570 Gretna Road will be closed to through traffic beginning Tuesday, May 31, 2022, through Friday, July 1, 2022, for road reconstruction. This closure also includes a section of N. Wildwood Dr. between the Mansion Theater and Log Cabin Circle.
This road reconstruction is a result of a substantial 12-inch water main break at Gretna Road and N. Wildwood Dr. that occurred on April 29, 2022. The water main break caused extensive damage to the road. While city crews immediately performed what repairs they could with the resources available, upon a thorough investigation of the damages, the repairs needed included road repair and replacement as well as sidewalk, curb and gutter repairs. The Branson Board of Aldermen approved the contract with Blevins Asphalt for the repairs, not to exceed $487,902.32, and approved adjusting the 2022 Budget for this repair at the May 24, 2022, regular Board of Aldermen meeting.
In addition to making immediate temporary repairs to accommodate traffic, city crews have monitored the road on a daily basis to make sure the road is drivable and make continued temporary repairs.
Signage will be in place to detour traffic around the road closure and to meet traffic safety standards during the closure. Motorists are asked to be aware of signage, traffic cones and work crews in the marked Work Zone. This road work is weather dependent. For questions regarding this project, please contact the City of Branson Public Works Department at 417-337-8559.
Make Sure To Visit The City of Bransons Website To Keep Up With All Their City Updates At:
Via The City of Branson
BRANSON, Mo – In a double read, the Branson Board of Aldermen unanimously approved a contract with Hoeffer Wekler, LLC for the professional design services for new Fire Station #4 that will be built at Champagne Boulevard at the regular Board of Aldermen meeting on May 10, 2022.
The fire station design is projected at a maximum of 11,000 sq. feet with a projected budget of $3.5 million from the half-cent Public Safety Sales tax Branson residents passed in 2017. The fire station will be designed to house up to six firefighters, three drive-through bays and a community/training room.
City staff will meet with the design firm on Thursday, May 12 for a design kick-off meeting and on-site visit. There will also be a meeting that is open to the public at 4:00 p.m. at the Pointe Royale Clubhouse where residents can meet the design team and provide input on what they would like to see in their new fire station.
The City put this project out for bid and received 11 Request for Qualifications (RFQ) for this project on July 20, 2021. These RFQ's were reviewed by a team of city staff who then selected the top 4 companies. Each of these companies' references were checked by staff and the findings from the reference check were presented to the selection committee. A contract has been negotiated for basic design services at 8.25% plus additional predesign supplemental services and optional services not to exceed the amount of $390,000 which has been allocated in the Public Safety Sales Tax budget.
Country Music Legend Mickey Gilley Passes Away at 86
Country music icon Mickey Gilley passed away Saturday May 7th in Branson, Missouri, due to complications after a recent hospitalization. He was 86 years old. Gilley’s publicist Zach Farnum said in a statement that he “passed peacefully” surrounded by family and close friends. He had recently returned home from the road after playing 10 shows in April, according to the statement.
If you ever had the opportunity to see Mickey Gilley Perform or meet him in person, then you would know what a great man Mickey was. He truly cared about his fan base and the community. Needless to say, Mickey will be greatly missed by the citizens of Branson Missouri as well as his fan base. Our thoughts and prayers go out to the Family & Friends of Mickey.
RIP Mickey! We All Love You!
Via The City of Branson Missouri:
BRANSON, Mo – The Branson Parks & Recreation Department will open the Branson AquaPlex, a 12,250 sq. ft. aquatic park featuring a pool with water slides, play structures, a climbing wall and a diving well on May 28, 2022.
This pool season will offer many programs, special events and facility reservation opportunities such as Swim Lessons, Toddler Time, Free Swim Days, Private Pool Parties, Sensory Swims and a Night Swim! Dates for these events, how to register for them and more information can be found on the Branson AquaPlex page under Programs/Special Events on our website, www.BransonParksandRecreation.com
The AquaPlex will be open Sundays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays from 12:15 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. and Fridays and Saturdays from 12:15 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. The AquaPlex will be closed for open swim on Mondays.
Season passes can be purchased at the Branson RecPlex and will include incentives such as a daily 15 minutes early entry access into the pool. In addition, pre-purchased daily passes are available online.
There has been some controversy over changes happening in the City of Branson as of recent from some of our local citizens. The City put out the following update to the release of minutes in the April 22nd closed executive meeting.
Via The City of Branson
BRANSON, Mo – Under the direction of Branson Mayor Larry Milton and the Board of Aldermen, the City of Branson is releasing the minutes of the April 22, 2022, closed executive session that was closed pursuant to 610.021.2 RSMO for real estate and 610.021.3 RSMO for personnel.
Because of the nature of closed executive sessions, not everything discussed is included in the minutes. According to the Missouri State Sunshine Law, 610.020.7, the minutes “shall include the date, time, place, members present, members absent and a record of any votes taken.”
While these minutes are available for members of the public and media anytime by submitting a records request found on the City’s website, BransonMo.Gov, Mayor Milton addressed making it easier for the public to access these minutes at the last Board of Aldermen meeting on April 26, 2022.
"This board is committed, and I mean committed to open transparency to the public and actions speak louder than words. Over time you will see this board be more and more transparent,” said Mayor Milton. “Our City administrator has agreed that when we do take it to a vote in executive session, you don't need to wait to go ask for a sunshine request, we are going to publish it so you know. That's another step of being transparent,” Mayor Milton said.
The minutes are attached to this news release UPDATE FROM MAYOR MILTON 4/29/22 2:00 P.M.: The City of Branson released the minutes from the Executive Session Meeting of the Board of Aldermen that occurred on April 22, 2022. The board authorized the creation of an agreement by employment counsel. The agreement is in conjunction with the previously-announced retirement of Mr. Stanley Dobbins.
Via The City of Branson Missouri:
Three new Branson Aldermen were sworn into office at Branson City Hall on Tuesday, April 12, 2022.
During the first of two regular Board of Aldermen meetings, Mayor Larry Milton thanked and honored the outgoing members of the board for their time and service to the community. Bill Skains (Ward 1) served on the Board of Aldermen since 2018 and served on several boards and committees including the Finance Committee (formerly known as the Capital Improvement Committee), the Transportation Development District (TDD) Board and the M. Graham Clark Downtown Airport Board. Jeff Seay (Ward 2) served on the Board of Aldermen since 2020 and served on several boards and committees including the Human Resources Committee, the Advisory Park Board and the Planning Commission. Jamie Whiteis (Ward 3) served on the Board of Aldermen since 2020 and served on several boards and committees including the 76 Entertainment Community Improvement District (CID) Board, the TDD Board and the Chamber of Commerce Representative.
After the first regular Board of Aldermen meeting concluded, Marshall Howden (Ward 1), Charles (Chuck) Rodriguez (Ward 2) and Ralph LeBlanc (Ward 3) were sworn into office. They then took part in the second regular Board of Aldermen meeting.
You can read more about the new Aldermen as well as find contact information and their biographies on the home page of the City’s website, www.bransonmo.gov. Residents and community members are encouraged to reach out to the Aldermen who represent the Ward in which they live regarding any issues as they are elected to represent the people of their Ward.
Board of Aldermen meetings are held on the second and fourth Tuesday of each month at 6:00 p.m. in City Hall Council Chambers and are live streamed at www.bransonmo.gov/livestream. Branson is a fourth class Missouri City and operates under the Council/Administration form of government. The governing body consists of six Aldermen elected from three wards and a Mayor elected at-large. The Mayor and Board of Aldermen serve two-year terms and elections are held each April. New Branson Board of Aldermen 2022
Via The City of Branson
The City of Branson is looking to fill several board and committee vacancies which provide opportunities for citizens to engage in local government, help make important decisions for the community and give their input regarding important city issues.
The deadline for applications is April 27, 2022, at 4:30 p.m. The City has vacancies on the following Boards and Committees:
BOARD OF ADJUSTMENT
BOARD OF APPEALS
HUMAN RESOURCES COMMITTEE
ADVISORY PARK BOARD
INDUSTRIAL DEVELOPMENT AUTHORITY
To read about each of the above City Boards & Committees, what they do, and to apply go to the “Boards & Committees” section of the City’s website, www.BransonMo.Gov.
You can also find applications at the City Clerk’s office, located at 110 W. Maddux, Street. For any questions, please call the Branson City Clerk’s office at 417-337-8522.
March 5th, 2022
Our Staff member Craig B Smith captured one of the new Branson "Ducks" amphibious vehicles exiting Lake Taneycomo this morning. The attraction is slated to begin service this summer.
February 23rd, 2022
Staff Member Craig B. Smith Took To The Roads Wednesday Afternoon After The First Round From A Winter Storm That Moved Through The Area.
The Branson Area Had Various Reports Came In Measuring Anywhere From 0.10 To Nearly 0.50 Inches Of Sleet. Needless To Say, This Hampered Driving Conditions Around The Area.
Temperatures During The Day Only Made It Into The Low 20s With Wind Chills In The Upper Teens.
Round 2 Of The Winter Storm Moves Through The Area Once Again Tomorrow.