There’s more than just country music in branson _ travel _ stltoday. com

But it was the 2013 documentary “We Always Lie to Strangers” (directed by A.J. Parmesan crusted chicken arugula Schnack of Edwardsville and David Wilson of Columbia, Mo.) that had piqued my interest in returning. Easy chicken parmesan recipe for two The film depicted a community of talented, hardworking performers living less-than-glamorous showbiz lives, praying for butts to fill the theater seats. Recipe for chicken parmesan pasta (Watch it before you go; it’s on Netflix.)

Stafford still has a live show, and go-kart tracks are as ubiquitous as any big city’s Starbucks. Quick chicken parmesan recipe But these days, Branson is diversifying its offerings even more to include something for everyone — and to attract even more tourists.

The city has embarked on an ambitious project known as Spirit of 76, a multimillion-dollar revitalization of a five-mile stretch of Highway 76, the bustling strip lined with theaters, hotels and attractions.

Parmesan chicken recipe In addition to enhancements such as lighting and landscaping, the project will improve traffic flow and parking and make the area more walkable. Easy chicken parm bake It’s being carried out in chunks, with completion set for 2024.

Plans for Branson’s Spirit of 76 revitalization include the addition of wide pedestrian walkways, comfortable gathering spaces, innovative landscaping and dynamic lighting along Highway 76. Chicken parmesan cheese recipe Handout rendering

In time for visitors this summer, though, you’ll be able to take a ride in the 15-story Ferris wheel that once called Chicago’s Navy Pier home. Oven baked chicken parmesan The iconic structure can hold 240 passengers in its 40 gondolas and is being installed at the Track Family Fun Park on Highway 76 as part of the company’s 35th anniversary.

• Bigfoot on the Strip, a 200-foot tower that will offer three different experiences for thrill-seekers: a freefall, a saddle-swing ride and a more tame rotating ride that gives a 360-degree view of the city. How long to bake parmesan chicken breast A food-truck court will also be part of the $10 million development.

• Fritz’s Adventure, at the site of the old Silver Fountain Inn, will feature three stories of tunnels, slides, swings, zip lines, climbing walls, a ropes course and more obstacles for adventurers of all kinds.

Capt. Chicken parmesan and pasta recipe Hawk takes a picture while a young passenger steers the boat at Ride the Ducks, on Table Rock Lake in Branson, Mo. Baked parmesan chicken Photo by Gabe Hartwig, Gabe Hartwig

A good place to start your visit to Branson is at Ride the Ducks, which operates a fleet of amphibious vehicles to give passengers a tour of town — on land and water. Simple baked chicken parmesan recipe The Ducks are replicas of the vehicles used in World War II to transport troops and supplies.

The narrated tour lasts a little over an hour and gives a good overview of the town. How to make parmesan chicken You’ll roll (or waddle?) through the entertainment district, then check out Table Rock Dam and climb to the top of Baird Mountain before plunging into Table Rock Lake for a look at the Showboat Branson Belle.

For adventures in the air, stop by Parakeet Pete’s Waterfront Zipline and Parakeet Pete’s Steampunk Balloon. Parmesan chicken calories Both operate at Branson Landing, the sleek entertainment complex on Lake Taneycomo that’s celebrating 10 years in business. Cheese parmesan chicken The zip line allows passengers to soar two at a time at around 40 mph, seated, across the lake from an observation deck.

At Parakeet Pete’s Steampunk Balloon, a motorized balloon “basket” carries up to 12 passengers 188 feet into the air. Parmesan chicken oven It’s a great way to enjoy a Branson sunset.

An employee at the Hollywood Wax Museum in Branson, Mo., applies paint to a wax figure of Julia Roberts. Chicken parmesan recipe alton brown Touch-ups must be done all day, every day, he said. Homemade chicken parmesan recipe “It’s a full-time job. Parmesan crusted chicken food network We tell them not to touch, but they do.” Photo by Gabe Hartwig, Gabe Hartwig

Nearby, in another building with a distinctive facade, the Ripley’s Believe It Or Not! Odditorium features more than 450 wacky artifacts, pieces of art and replicas.

In a room filled with human oddities you can see how you measure up to a mannequin of Alton native Robert Wadlow, who stood 8-feet-11-inches tall. How to cook chicken parmesan in the oven Or inspect the green tattoos and split tongue on a figure depicting the Lizard Man.

You also don’t want to miss the world’s largest ball of string (it weighs 6 tons), a room of shrunken heads, a stagecoach constructed of toothpicks and a collection of wishbones. Shake n bake chicken parmesan Music shows

The classic country shows are still around — such as the Baldknobbers Jamboree, which is Branson’s longest continuously running show, and the Presleys’ Country Jubilee, which built the first music theater on Highway 76. Parmesan chicken wings recipe But there are also shows you’ll love if country music and folksy humor aren’t your thing.

“Edge of Illusion,” starring the illusionist Reza, formerly of the Branson show “The Revollusionists,” is onstage through Sept. Easy breaded chicken parmesan recipe 3 at the Starlite Theatre. What goes with parmesan crusted chicken (Through summer, the theater also features the Texas Tenors, Billy Dean with Jarrett, the Blackwoods Morning Show and comedy percussionists Buckets N Boards.)

Reza was new to me, but his bio says he’s sold out venues nationwide. Cheese for chicken parmesan It’s easy to see why: The affable young magician — picture a more likeable Criss Angel, complete with swoopy hair and angular features — is fresh and engaging. Chicken parmesan in italian Much of his show is spent interacting with the audience and encouraging young fans to pursue magic.

His illusions range from simple street magic to more elaborate tricks involving a shipping container, a motorcycle and a sealed box of predictions.

A finale where a helicopter materializes behind a sheet was made less magical, though, when Reza prematurely lifted the sheet, revealing the copter rolling into place onstage.

While Branson shows are family friendly, a lot of them are also family affairs. Parmesan crusted chicken wings Just around the bend on Highway 76, six brothers (of 10 total) take the stage at the Mickey Gilley Theatre.

Barry, Kevin, Lynn, Jak, Owen and Curtis Knudsen make up the a cappella group SIX, which began its music career in the 1970s on “Donny & Marie.” A clip from an early TV appearance finds its way into this live show.

In a musical formula that seems to work for a lot of Branson shows, the men of SIX cover Motown, jazz, showtunes, gospel, patriotic tunes and even some Bieber and Coldplay. Chicken parmesan with bread crumbs No musical instruments are used; they produce all the sounds themselves in an impressive display of energy.

If you can’t remember their names, that’s OK; you’ll learn each brother’s wardrobe color instead. Oven baked chicken parmesan recipe Each drives a corresponding color-coded Camaro that you’ll see parked in front of the theater.

For dinner and a show with a more upscale feel, head to Table Rock Lake for a cruise on the Showboat Branson Belle. Chicken parmesan spaghetti recipe The huge 1880s-style paddlewheeler loops around the lake for a two-hour voyage multiple times daily.

The food in Captain’s Row is also pretty incredible — the best meal of our whole trip. Chicken with parmesan sauce These seats allow diners to select from a premium menu of entrees. Parmesan crusted chicken thighs recipe The 18-ounce prime rib was perfectly cooked to medium temp, served with a Mediterranean veggie medley, and a juicy chicken plate came with wild rice and vegetables.

Taylor Swift’s “Shake it Off” made an appearance, as did Meghan Trainor’s “Lips Are Movin.’ ” (And of course, some gospel and patriotic songs.)

The boat also offers a Princess and Pirate Cruise and a Southern Gospel Music Cruise. Parmesan crusted chicken thighs And starting May 28, all noon and Sunday cruises will feature aerial violinist Janice Martin, ventriloquist Phil Hughes, magician Aaron Radatz and live band the Castaways.

Every show and attraction in Branson will snap a souvenir picture of you against some digital backdrop. Parmesan chicken marinara But the one taken on the boat deck, with the lake in the background, is the one to actually buy prints of.

The Branson Belle is believed to be the largest excursion vessel operating in a landlocked waterway, the man-made Table Rock Lake. Parmesan chicken in oven If you’re using GPS navigation to help you get around, make sure you have an idea of where you’re headed; Siri may be a little confused on the roads leading there.

If you’ve never been to a Sight & Sound show, it’s clear you’re in for a treat as soon as you walk into the theater. 5 star chicken parmesan recipe The stage is panoramic — more than 26,500 square feet, it actually wraps around the audience on three sides.

“Moses” uses cool theatrical effects to create a burning bush, a baby floating down the river and the parting of the Red Sea. How do you make parmesan chicken Digital projections make realistic cinematic effects such as plagues and crumbling statues.

The cast is also impressive (Fraser Armstrong as Moses, Isaiah Bailey as Pharaoh, Rodney Coe as Aaron, among others), though the program that’s distributed at the show doesn’t list anyone by name. Quick parmesan chicken The music is forgettable, but it does its job of moving the story along.

The ushers here also put in strong performances, keeping the aisles clear so no one en route to the restroom gets trampled by actors or livestock.

An actual Broadway musical, “Million Dollar Quartet,” is back this season at Welk Resort Theatre. How to make parmesan chicken in the oven And the quintessential Branson drama, “Shepherd of the Hills,” continues at the Shepherd of the Hills Old Mill Theatre. Parmesan crusted chicken alfredo red lobster More attractions

A visit to Branson isn’t complete until you spend the day at Silver Dollar City, the 100-acre 1880s-themed park built above the Marvel Cave, its first attraction. Italian chicken parmesan recipe In 2015, the park added the kid-friendly Fireman’s Landing to its assortment of coasters, storefronts, restaurants, shows and craftsman demonstrations. Healthy chicken parmesan recipe Low-key firehouse-themed rides such as Lucky’s Dizzy Dogs and Fire Spotter will give the little ones a thrill, and Firefall — which drops passengers from eight stories — is fun for their grown-ups.