Motor Coach Transportation: Grand Rapids, Hibbing, Chisholm, Virginia, Eveleth, Duluth & Cloquet & North Branch PLUS St Cloud, Little Falls, Rice & Baxter, Burnsville & Owatonna
Five Nights Lodging: Two in Des Moines @ the Drury Inn (Pre Night & Post Night) Three Nights at the Dutton Family Inn. Located on the 76 Boulevard nearby shopping, theaters and Abby's Tourist Trap Restaurant
Shows Listed Above plus Festival of Lights, Old Downtown and Branson Landing
Eight Meals: Five Breakfasts, Three Dinners and Cocktails / Hot Appetizer & Food Buffet at the Drury Inns
An Area Ozark Mountain Tour with a stop at College of the Ozarks (Fruitcake Factory) and the Grand Village
Cabella's Outlet Store in Owatonna and Russell Stover Candy Store en-route home
Luggage Handling, Taxes, Tips & Fully Guided Deposits and Final Payment Due Date: $125 per person deposit is due with each reservation and is non-refundable after September 1, 2015. Final balance due: October 1, 2015. Final Documents: Final documents are expected to arrive in late October with specifics on boarding location and hour. Cancellations: Money returned with cancellations between September 1-October 1, 2015 are contingent upon what Happy Trails Tours can retrieve back from hotels, charters, theaters, restaurants, etc. No refunds with cancellations made after October 10, 2015. Reservations are transferable. Travel Insurance: Travel insurance is available to help defray monies lost due to illness, family emergencies, trip interruption, due to cancellation. It can offer peace of mind and financial security. Call our office for further information.
Nov 16th - Monday - Day 1 Boarding: This list is only a preliminary boarding list that we used the previous year. It is meant to give you an idea of how the boarding schedule work out last year. About a month prior to departure, you will get an actual boarding list for this tour. Northeast Minnesota: Trobec Motor Coach will bring the main motor coach up the Rapids to begin our trip.
_____5:45 am -Grand Rapids Sawmill Inn on Hwy 169
_____6:30am- Hibbing Super Eight (North Lot)
_____7:00 am- Virginia Village Inn
_____7:15 am- Eveleth Super Eight (East Parking Lot) 8:15-9:15- Arrive to Duluth Perkins Miller Hill Mall Restaurant for breakfast, paying on own.
_____9:00 am- Duluth Perkins Miller Hill Mall
_____9:30 am- Cloquet Perkins Restaurant
Central Minnesota: Trobec Bus driver will provide shuttle transportation either coach, 24 pax mini-bus or van depending on how many. They'll offer a warm welcome to each of you, then bring you east to North Branch to meet the motor coach as it travels south along I-35.
___8:00 am- Baxter Kohl's Dept Store
___8:30 am- Little Falls Walmart (back of lot on west side in NW corner)
___9:00 am - AmericInn - (Sartell- Hwy 15) Our friends from Central MN will meet the Happy Trails group here in North Branch 11:00 am-The motor coach coming from the northeast end of the state and those coming from central will join in No Branch.
_____11 am- North Branch, McDonalds
12:15 pm- Arrive to Burnsville - Applebees Entrance (This stop offers a good variety of restaurants to choose from...Panera Bread,Food Court, Applebees and Chinese Restaurant.)
1:15 pm- Re-board the coach and continue on to Des Moines, Iowa.
3:15 pm- Stop at the Top of Iowa Rest Area
6:00 pm- Estimated arrival to Drury Inn 5505 Mills Civic Parkway, Des Moines, IA # 515-457-9500 Tonight is at your leisure. The hotel offers hot & cold buffet between 5:30-7 pm with complimentary cocktails. There are also restaurants within walking distance. This property is beautiful! It offers coffeemakers in the rooms, hairdryer, irons & boards, free hot and cold beverages in the lobby, indoor / outdoor heated pool and a fitness center.
Nov 17 - Tuesday - Day 2
6:30 am- Enjoy an included full breakfast at the hotel before we depart for Branson. Set your luggage outside your doors.
7:30 am- The coach departs Des Moines for Branson, MO. A mid-morning stop will made as well as a lunch stop en-route.
3:00 pm- Estimated arrival to Branson: Dutton Inn - 3454 W Highway 76, Branson, MO # 417-942-4626 We’ll settle into this wonderful property. The Dutton Inn is a lovely family owned property (Dutton Family) to all newly renovated rooms with 2 queen beds & pillow top mattresses, theater and restaurant right next door, microwaves & refrigerators in each room, (two beds in handicapped rooms with walk-in showers-limited number of those) and Wi-Fi. The rooms also have coffeemakers, irons & ironing boards and hairdryers. (Very nice property).
5:00 pm- Tonight we’ll take you to Dinner, included at the Shorty Smalls Restaurant . You will have several choices to select from - Meatloaf, Ribs and Roasted Chicken, Chicken Pot Pie or Baked Talapia
8:00 pm- Reserved seats for the The Baldknobbers Show. Here is one of the original Branson groups that's sure to get your feet taping and hands clapping! You doesn't love a good hillbilly show?
Nov 18 - Wednesday - Day 3
7:00 - 9:00 am Enjoy a full breakfast served at Abby's. It's a great hot full breakfast with many items on the menu.
9:00 am- 11 am - Board the bus and take an Area Ozark Mountains Tour with local step on guide, Omar Gibson. Our tour will include a stop at the College of the Ozarks and the Fruitcake Factory. You'll learn about the history of the people who came to Branson as we drive through the lovely Ozark Mountains. We'll stop by the Grand Village for a little while so folks can explore at your leisure before traveling to the Moon River Theater. This is also a great place to get your lunch, paying on your own, before Danny's show.
1:15 pm- Board the coach and travel to the Moon River Theater to see The Letterman! The Letterman had hit after hit in the 60's and 70's to include Are You Lonesome Tonight?; Shangri La; When I Fall in Love; Can't Take My Eyes Off you and many more. You'll be dialing the clock back to those wonderful love songs from yesteryear!
6:00 pm- Dinner tonight will be at the Welk Theater - Cantina (Buffet) prior to taking our seats to see the Million Dollar Quartet! This Tony Award winning Broadway production was Inspired by an incredible true story, Million Dollar Quartet relives one magical night—an impromptu jam session with Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis, and Carl Perkins. Together, on this one night only, these four music icons created sounds that would span decades and generations and became forever known as the Million Dollar Quartet.Once the show concludes (about 2 hours) we'll travel to the hotel for a well deserved night's rest.
Nov 19- Thursday - Day 4:
7:00 am- A full breakfast, at the Inn is all set before beginning our day’s activities. Enjoy an entire morning open to relax, take in a morning show at the Duttons or hop on the coach and travel to Old Downtown Branson/ Branson Landing to do a bit of shopping!
12:30 pm- Lunch is included at the Dutton Cafe (on the property grounds). Sandwich Buffet, soup, salad... the works! 2:00 pm - Next: We'll see the Dutton Family Christmas. NBC's "America's Got Talent" Finalists... You are in for a treat! This family is so talented that they've become known as "Branson's Premier Music Variety Show".
5:30 pm- Dinner is included at the Starlight Diner's Cafe (Plated Meal)
7:30 pm- Settle in for the Christmas Show of the Texas Tenors at the Starlight Theater!
9:45 pm- After the show, in case you’re not in the holiday spirit yet, we’ll drive through the Trail of Lights. Once we return to the hotel, waiting for us is an evening snack ... Ice Cream!
Nov 20-Friday - Day 5
7:30 am- 8:30 am - Enjoy full breakfast. Set your luggage outside your doors at 7:30 am.
8:30 am- We'll say good-bye to Branson, MO. We’ll make stops along the way as we wind our way northward toward Des Moines -back to the beautiful Drury Inn.
6:00 pm- Estimated arrival to Drury Inn 5505 Mills Civic Parkway, Des Moines, IA # 515-457-9500 Tonight is at your leisure. Again....the hotel offers hot & cold buffet between 5:30-7:00 pm with complimentary cocktails. There are also restaurants within walking distance. This property is beautiful! It offers coffeemakers in the rooms, hairdryer, irons & boards, free hot and cold beverages in the lobby, indoor / outdoor heated pool and a fitness center.
Nov 21 Saturday - Day 6
7:00 - 8:00 am- Enjoy a full hot breakfast at the Drury Inn- Set your luggage outside your door at 7 am.
8:00 am- Board the coach and we'll begin our journey back to the Minnesota Northland. A stop in Owatonna at Cabella’s will be made since so many folks tell us they enjoy that stop. Here you can get lunch, paying on own, before continuing home. One last stop...Russell Stover’s Candy Outlet store (right nearby Cabella's) will be made today. “Life really is like a box of chocolates”.
Estimated arrivals to the various towns are as follows; 2:45 pm- North Branch; 5:00 pm to Sartell; 5:30 to Little Falls; 6 pm to Baxter 4:30 pm- Cloquet; 5:00 - Duluth; 6:30 pm-Eveleth; 7:00 pm- Virginia; 7:30 pm-Hibbing; 8:15 pm Grand Rapids.
Things to Know Before You Go on Branson Tour ___________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
The Coach/ Escort & Driver: The bus is being chartered through TROBEC BUS CO. The coach has 56 comfortable seats that recline. The bus also has a restroom on board, TV sets with a VCR/DVD player, microphone, and adjustable foot rests. We love to play movies on board, tell stories, play a few games and have snacks! (We love treats!) Folks are welcome to bring snacks on board, too. We stop every 2-3 hours. The day will fly by very quickly.
How to Pack: The tour is completely casual. Dress comfortably with good walking shoes. Pack along a fall/winter jacket. Pack a camera and/or video camera. Still shots are allowed in the theaters…but videos of any kind are not.
Seat Rotation:We do not rotate seats.. Unless you have special requests due to medical needs, the seating is open. A reserved sign will be set on your seat if you have special needs or requested handicapped seating prior to departure. Look for them as you come inside.
Hotels /Smoking/ Non-smoking: The hotels where we are staying are very nice. Read your day-by-days to learn the specifics on each property. All the rooms are non-smoking unless you requested it. If you asked for a “smoking room” you will likely get one. Please don’t smoke in rooms that are designated as “non-smoking”. Often penalty charges may apply. We stop every 2 ½ hours for quick breaks or meals along the way.
Special Needs / Perfumes/ Fragrances: Kindly refrain from using strong perfumes/ fragrant colognes while traveling on this tour. So many folks have allergies to the chemicals in them and may become sick while traveling. Thank you very much for this consideration. Please let us know if you any special needs such as; allergies, motion sickness, medical concerns, or physical disabilities that may affect walking or climbing stairs. We have several hotel rooms in Branson that offer handicapped bars in the bathroom, roll in shower and two beds. Let us know if you need one. They are reserved on a first-come, first served basis.
Theaters/ Name Tags: We’ll bring you to the front door of all the theaters where you’ll be greeted by a hostess. They’ll bring us in (and yes…you’ll walk right past all the long lines at the ticket booth) and direct us to our seats. The seats are reserved but we will not be given individual ticket stubs. Your “name tag” will be your ticket stub. Wear it faithfully. You’ll receive the name badges after you get on the bus.
Promptness: It is so important to be prompt. When the bus is scheduled to leave at a particular time, it is of utmost importance to be prompt by arriving about 5-10 minutes earlier than the time stated. Sometimes the traffic is terrible and even a short distance can take a long time to arrive. Theaters insist that groups arrive early for hassle-free seating. If we are late…we may not be seated until there is a reasonable break in the performance. This goes for early morning departures as well. All hotels have alarm clocks and will also give you a courtesy call but we suggest to pack your own travel alarm just in case you do not get a call. Thank YOU in advance for this!!!
Tipping: Tips for included meals, luggage handling and city tour guide is included in this package. Tips for your bus driver and Happy Trails Tour guide is not included and may be done at your own discretion at the end of the tour.
Weather: The weather should be warm and very nice, however, we‘ve seen it SNOW in Branson this time of year (Though that‘s rare…we’ve also seen it get as hot as 80 degrees!) Normal temps are between 55-65. With the high elevation, we recommend layering your clothing since mornings and evening can be cool and afternoons can be warmer.
Weather Conditions: In 2007 when we were on a Branson Christmas tour, a blizzard swept through the Midwest and paralyzed the entire region from Kansas City to Northern Minnesota. It caused us to have to spend one more night in Branson (where it was 65 degrees and sunny!). The following day, we traveled home with only wet roads to contend with and everyone stayed safe. We tell you about this because it can happen again. (Hopefully it won’t). One more piece of information….You arefinancially responsible for the added expense if this should happen. Actually, we had a wonderful “extra” day in Branson and everyone was happy. We took in another show, ate at another nice restaurant but most of all…we were safe and warm.
NOTE: Travel Insurance helped pick up the cost of this added expense for our travelers who purchased the insurance. Changes on your Itinerary: _We reserve the right to adjust this schedule for the benefit of all traveling. Thank you for your understanding. We reserve the right to adjust this schedule for the benefit of all traveling. If a change of hotel, restaurant or an attraction occurs, we’ll try to replace it with one of equal value or better if at all possible. As always… we’ll inform you of any changes as we learn of them, themselves.
Happy Trails Disclaimer: Happy Trails Tours acts only as an agent for the various independent suppliers that provide hotel accommodations, transportation, theater, or other services connected with this tour. Such services are subject to the terms and conditions of those suppliers. Happy Trails Tours, INC and their respective employees, agents, representatives accept no liability whatsoever for any injury, damage, loss, accident, delay, or any other default of any company or person in performing these services. Responsibility is not accepted for losses, injury, damages or expenses of any kind due to sickness, weather, strikes, hostilities, wars, terrorist acts, acts of nature, local laws or other causes. All services and accommodations are subject to the laws and regulations of country in which they are provided. Happy Trails Tours INC is not responsible for any baggage or personal effects of any individual participating in the tours/trips arranged by Happy Trails Tours. Individual travelers are responsible for purchasing a travel insurance policy, if desired, that will cover some of the expenses associated with the loss of luggage or personal effects.