Dave & Dot's 25th Anniverary Tour

Week 3 - Branson, MO to Kansas City, KS.

Tuesday, October 16th - Of Angels and Barbeques . . .

We traveled to Kansas City, KS today. One of our shortest travel days so far in that it only took about 4 hours to complete our trip. We will be staying at the Homestead Suites in Kansas City.  However, we had to stop in a little place called Carthage, MO to visit the Precious Moments Chapel and grounds. It is a stop well worth making . . .

There are many reasons that hundreds of thousands of people choose to visit Precious Moments Park each year. Once here, most agree it is a place set apart . . . a place where peace, joy and happiness are celebrated. Many visitors begin their experience at the Visitor Center, especially designed by Precious Moments artist, Samuel J. Butcher, to reflect the warmth of a small English country village of yesteryear. It is the perfect setting to step out of the everyday world and into a world of Precious Moments.

This little village is also home to the world’s largest Precious Moments gift shop, Royal Delights sandwich shop, visitor comfort amenities, and the ever popular wishing fountain. It is from the Visitors Center that guests often begin their exploration of Precious Moments Park.

Inspired by Michelangelo’s Sistine Chapel in Rome, Precious Moments artist and creator, Samuel J. Butcher, designed and constructed the Precious Moments Chapel as his way of sharing the joy of his faith with the world, and it has become his crowning work. The Chapel is so much more than just a building, touching the lives of those who enter its doors with a sense of peace, hope, and promise since it opened in 1989.

Sam used his beautiful and innocent Precious Moments messengers to bring well known and loved stories from the Bible to life in dozens of murals – all hand-painted by Sam himself. From the story of creation to the promise of the resurrection, the Chapel tour guide takes guests through the many stories of God’s love for us.

The art on the east side of the Chapel depicts the Bible’s Old Testament stories; while New Testament stories are shown on the west side. The mural “Hallelujah Square” celebrates the lives of real children whose lives ended too soon, but whose stories continue to bring a message of love, hope and peace. All of the murals combine to cover nearly 5,000 square feet – truly a breathtaking sight.

Nestled in the rolling foothills of the beautiful Ozark Mountains sits Precious Moments Park. With your first step onto the grounds, you’ll discover why so many have found this place to be a haven of peace and tranquility. The Park is home to acres of manicured grounds and dozens of gardens featuring flowering plants of many stunning varieties. You don’t need to have a green thumb to appreciate the perfect beauty of this natural wonder.

Near the calm waters of Center Creek, the Chapel gardens are a place where guests to Precious Moments Park often find opportunities to escape the rush and hurry of the everyday world beyond. A walk down the Avenue of Angels where sunlight and shadow create a place for quiet reflection, and moments of togetherness with friends and family are often favorite memories of a Park visit. Each season brings its own beauty for all to enjoy. No matter what time of year, everywhere one turns another photo opportunity appears.

We also were able to visit the Gallery & Gift Shop where every item created by the artist is on display and available for purchase from the small porcelain statuettes to large full size statues, cards, buttons, everything. It was truly worth the time to stop and we had a hard time leaving. It is a very emotional place to visit. We even saw the island castle the artist built for his grandchildren. A must see place. And there was much we didn't see as we chose not to pay for the tram tour. One could spend hours there, such that if (and when) we return, we certainly will.

We ended our day in search of the ultimate BBQ dinner. We had heard that Kansas City is the home of the BBQ and so with the help of a few of the locals suggestions we found a place called Gates BBQ. They have several stores but we went to the original Gates BBQ, where it all began. It was actually in the Missouri side of Kansas City but just a short drive from where we were staying. The food was wonderful and we ate way too much!