More than a college...
The College of the Ozarks has a variety of unique experiences to offer to anyone visiting the Ozarks region. Located near the tourist destination of Branson, Missouri, College of the Ozarks warmly welcomes all visitors to enjoy our beautiful campus.
Sites To See:
The Keeter Center was designed to reflect Dobyns Hall, a rustic Maine lodge displayed at the 1904 World’s Fair in St. Louis. The lodge was subsequently relocated to the School of the Ozarks, where it stood until 1930. One hundred years later, that lodge has been re-created. A night at The Keeter Center ensures sweet dreams. Thirty beautifully decorated suites await you, some with fireplaces and balconies overlooking the tranquil College of the Ozarks campus. Whether a Loft Suite with hewn-log vaulted ceilings, a Skyline Suite with separate bedroom, or the ultimate, two-bedroom Presidential Suite, a night at The Keeter Center is an unparalleled experience. The Keeter Center is also home to some of the Ozarks’ finest dining. From a sumptuous Sunday brunch in William R. Dobyns Dining Room to a casual dining experience on our patio, dining at The Keeter Center will be a treat long treasured! Boasting nearly 100,000 square feet of space, The Keeter Center is the perfect venue for any event. From small functions requiring an intimate boardroom setting to grand events such as weddings, The Keeter Center offers a perfect blend of personal attention and warm, rustic elegance. Please visit The Keeter Center web site for more information.
Williams Memorial Chapel is an outstanding example of neo-Gothic architecture. The structure, dedicated in 1956, measures 150 feet long and 80 feet wide, with an 80-foot-high vaulted ceiling and impressive stained glass windows. Attached to the chapel is the Hyer Bell Tower. Sunday services beginning at 11 a.m. are open to the public.
The Ralph Foster Museum is dedicated to the history of the Ozarks region. Named in honor of the late Ralph D. Foster, radio pioneer and philanthropist, the museum houses thousands of artifacts representing archaeology, history, firearms, antiques, numismatics, natural history, fine arts, geology and mineralogy. Hours are 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Saturday. A small admission fee is charged; ages 18 and under are admitted free. Please visit The Ralph Foster Museum web site for more information.
Fruitcake and Jelly Kitchen, since 1934, College of the Ozarks has produced its famous fruitcakes on campus, and today student workers, along with supervisors, bake more than 25,000 cakes a year. Visitors are welcome in the kitchen where a variety of jellies and the College's delicious apple butter are also made and sold. Please visit the Fruitcakes & Other Goodies page for more information.
Edwards Mill, built with funds provided by the late Mr. and Mrs. Hubert C. Edwards, is powered by a twelve-foot water wheel turned by runoff water from nearby Lake Honor. Student workers grind whole-grain meal and flour, available for purchase inside the building. Upstairs is a weaving studio, where students design and produce rugs, shawls, placemats and other items on traditional looms. Downstairs, students hand-weave baskets.
The C of O Greenhouses, located east of Edwards Mill, are home to the Clint McDade orchid collection. Mr. McDade, one of the School's first students, donated the nucleus of the collection, which today numbers more than 7,000 plants. Individual orchids and other houseplants are for sale at the greenhouse.
The College of the Ozarks Bookstore offers College of the Ozarks and Hard Work U. logo items that can be purchased to show your support for College of the Ozarks. Please visit the Bookstore page for more information.
Other Sights To See:
- Lake Honor
- The College Dairy
- Memorial Fieldhouse and Keeter Gymnasium
- Point Lookout view of the Ozarks
- Star Schoolhouse
- Gaetz Tractor Museum
Table Rock Dam Tours
Get an up close and personal view of Table Rock Lake Dam by taking a guided walking tour. Go deep inside the Dam and see firsthand what it takes to operate the massive structure, create hydro-electric power, and maintain the pristine water for fishing, boating, and recreation on the 43,000 acre Table Rock Lake. This is a behind the scenes experience that you won’t soon forget.
Tours of Table Rock Dam and Powerhouse are available daily. Book now as tours are limited! Click here for schedule and rates.
Tours depart from Dewey Short Visitor Center, 4500 State Highway 165, Branson, MO.
Shepherd of the Hills Trout Hatchery
The Shepherd of the Hills Trout Hatchery is operated by the Missouri Department of Conservation and produces both Rainbow and Brown Trout for not only Lake Taneycomo but other state trout fishing facilities. The Visitor Center features a display of wildflowers and plants indigenous to the area as well as a nature display and a short video on the hatchery and the process of producing the trout that makes Lake Taneycomo one of the premier trout fisheries in the nation. There is also a huge aquarium with some “lunker” Brown and Rainbow Trout indicating the size of some of the trout in Lake Taneycomo. The Visitor Center opens at 9:00 a.m. every day except, Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Years Day.
Great place to see while in Branson -it's free and fun. Good activity for all ages, even teenages can enjoy it.
Tip: Bring lots of quarters for the fish food. Also bring a bag or cup to put the fish food in. Then you don't have to keep running back to fill up your hand and you can feed all the fish in the tanks. Don't forget to feed the fish in the big tank outside the building with all the BIG fish in it.
Talk to the guides they are very informative
Directions: The hatchery and conservation center are located on Highway 165 just south of Branson, below the dam at Table Rock Lake, 483 Hatchery Road, Branson, MO 65616
Dewey Short Visitor Center
No visit to the lake would be complete without stopping by Dewey Short Visitor Center and Discovery Shop near Table Rock Dam. The new visitor center opened April 27, 2012 and has been called the “crown jewel” of Table Rock Lake. Exhibits at the visitor center include a state-of-the-art interactive map of Table Rock Lake, beautiful artistic wall murals,
and a replica of an Ozarks bluff complete with local flora and fauna. A Native American artifact exhibit and Ozarks dioramas are fascinating features of the interpretive center. An interactive water safety exhibit demonstrates the importance of wearing a life jacket, and an expansive cut-away model reveals the inner workings of a hydroelectric dam. The fascinating history of the Corps of Engineers rounds out the exhibits. Come experience the story of Table Rock Lake and our Ozarks Rivers Heritage. Maps and information about recreation opportunities on Table Rock Lake and the Branson area are also available at the visitor center.
While you’re there, get your authentic Table Rock Lake merchandise and unique Ozarks gifts. We showcase the work of local artisans and craftsmen so you can take a little bit of the Ozarks home with you. Click here for more information on the Discovery Shop retail store.
The Dewey Short Visitor Center, 4500 State Highway 165 Branson, MO is open daily from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm.