Hello from Missouri!
After a 12+ hour drive down, Scott, Roadie and I made it to his Mom’s house in Springfield late Monday night. It had been just about two years since we’ve visited, so a trip was long overdue.
We started our Tuesday with breakfast and lunch at home. We spent our time chatting with his mom and step-dad until we headed out to explore some of their city. We didn’t have any particular stops on our radar, so we searched “things to do in Springfield, MO” and ended up having a great day!
The World’s Largest Fork
We were going to check out a cavern, but after reading some not-so-great reviews, we found a couple of other stops to keep us busy. First on the list was a drive over to the largest fork in the world!
Seriously, the World’s Largest Fork is right here in Springfield, MO. Who knew?
It is what it is… a humongous 35-foot fork next to a random brick building, and we have no idea what it is supposed to represent or why it’s there. But, it’s easy to get to, hard to miss, and fun to have in your scrapbook.
By the way, if you are ever in the area and want to go see it, the fork is kind of hidden behind the building at the corner of Cox and Butterfield (not Chesterfield). We were in and out in a few minutes, and then ready to move on to something else.
Bass Pro Shop’s Outdoor World Headquarters
With a few options closed for the day, we decided to drive over to an attraction that never disappoints. Also home to Springfield, is the very first Bass Pro Shop’s Outdoor World.
And let me tell you, it really does feel like an outdoor world. It’s ginormous!
Bass Pro Shops is the Grandaddy of all Outdoor Stores. This huge (almost 500,000 square foot!) location is not only the original, but the largest Bass Pro Shops in existence.
While it’s a store first and foremost, you almost forget the point is to sell merchandise upon entry. This store, in particular, is dedicated to the outdoors with art from local artists, animals, and hand-crafted fixtures.
You are immersed in a natural looking environment complete with waterfalls, springs, and live fish in seven different tanks! One even holds two of the largest Alligator Gar in the world.
(That’s not one of the largest, but still quite impressive.) I didn’t even know those existed! I was, however, well aware of the sight of alligators after growing up in Florida.
It may sound silly for a store, but there was so much to do and see!
Along with the animals, there are two large museums to check out on the fourth floor: the NRA National Sporting Arms Museum and the Archery Hall of Fame.
The NRA National Sporting Arms Museum takes you through the progression of sporting arms throughout history. There is also an impressive collection of arms from famous people through history like Jesse James and Teddy Roosevelt. Some even dated back to the 17th century!
The Archery Hall of Fame displays a historical look at archery throughout the U.S. You will find a huge wall of all the members and manufacturers who changed the sport through their years. We took our time reading the achievements of individuals, and I was particularly interested in the story behind this brown bear.
This Alaskan brown bear holds the world record for bow and arrow, taken by Fred Bear with one arrow from only 20 feet away on the Alaskan Peninsula in 1960! Also, you will find the original prototype compound bow and Geronimo’s bow and handmade quiver.
While we spent a little over an hour, it would be easy to spend an entire day in this shop with your family! There is a nice sit down restaurant called Hemingway’s that features a bar with a huge aquarium display.
Since we didn’t have anywhere to be, we took our time exploring everything there was to see.
We spent a good amount of time looking at outdoor toys like boats and ATVs. Being around all of these machines sure makes you want to take them home with you!
As we were wrapping up, I grabbed a Bass Pro Shops trucker hat to purchase. It was a small price to pay for an entertaining afternoon, and the opportunity to catch a fish THIS BIG!
I’m kidding… and I’m totally in the Liars’ Club.
Anyways, if you are ever in the Springfield, MO area and are looking for something the whole family can do, I would highly suggest a trip over to Bass Pro Shops. It’s free, and entertained us for quite a while!
We still had about an hour or so to kill before dinner plans with Scott’s family, so we drove over to Downtown Springfield to find something to do. We walked several blocks, and noticed there are a lot great changes happening to this city!
From coffee shops and creperies to pubs and boutique shops, we could have spent an entire day in this part of town!
We originally drove over to check out what looked like an epic 80s-themed arcade called 1984.
It’s only $5.00 to enter, and you can play any games for as long as you stay! We were bummed to see it’s closed Sundays through Tuesdays.
As we were walking, we spotted a sign asking “Wanna Hurts Donut?”
Intrigued, we walked over to see the entrance of Hurts Donut across the street. Well played, marketing department!
Hurts Donut is open 24/7 (or, 25 hours a day and 8 days a week according to the sign on their front door ;)) and is becoming a very popular spot to grab a morning, afternoon, and late-night treat.
They are known for funky flavors that include anything from S’mores to popular cereals.
We had a difficult time narrowing down what we wanted, but we eventually decided on their most popular sellers that included Maple Bacon, Nutella, Andes Mint, and a caramel Girl Scout Cookie.
We saved most of them to enjoy throughout the week since we were on our way to dinner, but I did catch a sneak peek of what to expect by devouring the mint pretty quickly!
Before we knew it, it was time to drive to dinner and meet Scott’s family. We had a great little afternoon exploring Springfield!
Well, I better go! We are off to Eureka Springs, Arkansas, and I plan on checking in with y’all tomorrow if I find the Internet.
I hope you have a great Wednesday!
Lauren @ The Bikini Experiment
Looks like you trip is off to a great start! That outdoor shops looks pretty amazing. I do not consider myself that much of an outdoor person, but it would be easy to spend the day wandering around there!
After everywhere you went, I think I liked the big fork the most. Seriously, that thing looked amazing! Also the donuts. The ones with the cereal looking things on top look so good! I am glad you had such a great day :).
So random, but so forkin’ awesome! 😉
Look how fun!!!
Haha, when in doubt… spend an entire afternoon in an outdoor sporting goods shop. lol 😉
Of course. Why not?!
suzanne @ Life is a Mix
You are a better woman than me! Those donuts would stand no chance at being saved for “later in the week”. I would’ve shoved them in my face in 10 seconds flat. I love donuts!!
Haha, well I guess it helped that we were going straight to dinner. I happily ate the Nutella one for breakfast today!
Ah, the giant Bass Pro Shop. Love that place! My dad was always a huge fan. I love how you and Scott are able to go on crazy fun adventures no matter where you two are! Like the donut shop?! I had no idea that was in Springfield or I would have made a trip there when we were visiting the Bass Pro Shop. They do look like indulgent donuts. Hope you both enjoy Eureka Springs! That’s always a neat place to visit. For restaurants I recommend Local Flavor Cafe (especially for lunch) and Ermilio’s Italian Home Cooking. A good friend of mine–her husband’s family has worked at or owned part of Ermilio’s for quite some time now. His family lives in Eureka Springs. Have fun!!!
Now way, we love Ermilio’s! Scott actually proposed to me in Eureka Springs the morning after we ate dinner there. It was delicious! Thanks for the lunch suggestion, we just might check it out! Oh, and you’d love Hurts. We heard from locals that St. George donuts are better, but Hurts is way more fun!
I just saw that today on facebook that he proposed to you in Eureka Springs! Now that makes me happy, it’s such a gem of a town. A very unique and lovely place to have a proposal! 😀
Erin @ Her Heartland Soul
Mmm donuts!! And omg that fork is huge!!
Right?? Haha! So random!
I love the BPS we have here in Auburn Hills… it’s nice taking a break from walking through Great Lakes Crossing into Bass, it’s another world!
Yes, we love it too. I forgot to mention we have the only location in all of Michigan right in Auburn Hills!
All of those donuts sound amaaazing!
I also happen to love Bass Pro Shop. Whenever my boyfriend is in town, we normally end up either there or at Cabella’s. I sometimes think he believes he is dragging me along, but I usually enjoy it more than he thinks 😉
Haha, he’ll never know you’re not just being a “good sport”… Surprisingly, I love it every time we go too!
Brie @ Lean, Clean, & Brie
SO many good looking donuts! I am not even that big of a fan of donuts, but those look so good! Now I am craving one!
Right? We also went back and got a Cookie Monster donut for Scott’s mom. I should have posted a picture, it was so cute!
I always love visiting Bass Pro Shops but that one looks amazing! Enjoy your trip!
Char @ Nutritiously Fit
Very clever donut marketing indeed!! Sounds like you guys had fun. I can’t wait until I can have a date day/night with Tyler again. We’re so long overdue! haha
There’s a Bass Pro close by me but it’s not anywhere near as big as that one. There is a bowling alley inside that’s pretty cool though!
Those donuts look delicious!!! I definitely wouldn’t be able to resist trying one! YUM!
:O Is that a captain crunch doughnut I see?! Looks amazing! “Largest things” are always so funny. I grew up in rural Canada and we always passed the “world’s largest fly fishing rod” when we drove to visit our relatives that lived 6+ hours away! Have a great time on your trip, Heather!
Ashley @ A Lady Goes West
Fun times! I actually enjoy going into Bass Pro Shops — there is so much to look at, so it would be cool to go to THE Bass Pro Shop! How cute you got a trucker hate to commemorate your visit! 🙂
Her Happy Balance
Oh my goodness – we have a Bass Pro shop in PA and it is so big and filled with so much animal life…it feels like a museum! Glad you had a fun time exploring 🙂
That donut shop looks amazing! I wish there was one in AZ. Smores donut…mmm.
Loved this post and getting an outsiders perspective on the city! I currently live in Springfield and am from Eureka Springs. How randomly awesome is that?! Hurt’s Donuts is amazing and the BP flagship store is really cool too. The giant fork is located @ an ad agency that mainly represents food companies like Mission Tortilla, etc. Makes it a little more meaningful.
If you’re looking for somewhere good to eat in Eureka, I recommend Ermilio’s and Local Flavor. Two local, one-of-a-kind places. Sparky’s is cool too….the food is ok but decor very eclectic and unique. I hope you & the hubby have fun!!
How cool! That’s too funny. Thank you for sharing the explanation – the fork makes a little more sense! Thanks for your recommendations! We’ve actually been to both of those places, but it was before I started blogging to document it. I remember both being so good! We’ve never been to Sparky’s though. We’ll have to stop in next time!
Great post Heather. We always visit Bass Pro in Orlando whenever we are in that part of the world. So many great things to see and do. I just wish we were able to take things back in our luggage. Unfortunately not! Reading your post reminds me of holidays so always brings a smile to my face.
I hope you are having a great day.
Zoe – Paleoinheels.com