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!