the scenes of the
Branson, Missouri 3-D Tour
a Branson, Missouri View-Master® set now
the first time, Branson attractions are showcased in full color
View-Master® 3-D photographs. Branson visitors will want to pick
up this souvenir to show their friends back home what Branson
really looks like in 3-D photographs so real you could reach out
and touch them. Close to six million people travel to spend their
vacation at Branson attraction. Branson, America's live entertainment
capital, is home to theatres featuring such stars as Kenny Rogers
at The Grand Palace, Branson's Comedian of the Year Jim Stafford
at the Jim Stafford Theatre, The Tony Orlando Yellow Ribbon Music
Theatre, The Baldknobbers Hillbilly Jamboree, The Shepherd of
the Hills Outdoor Theatre, Shenandoah South Theatre, The Five
Star Theatre, The Cristy Lane Theatre and "Hee Haw Honeys,"
The Norris Twins (Becky and Lindy Norris). Popular theme parks
like Silver Dollar City, Marvel Cave, White Water, Mutton Hollow
Craft and Entertainment Village, Branson Scenic Railway, Showboat
Branson Belle, downtown Branson and more are featured on the Branson,
Missouri View-Master® 3-D reels.
first Branson stars who agreed to have their 3-D photo included
on the project were The Norris Twins. Becky and Lindy Norris are
well known Branson entertainers who also appeared as a regular
part of the cast of TV's "Hee Haw." The Norris Twins
photo showcases these two lovely ladies in a live performance
before a capacity audience at the "John Davidson Theatre"
located on Branson's world famous 76 Country Boulevard.
"One of my favorite views of Branson is of the Jim Stafford
Theatre," said 3-D photographer Van Beydler. "Jim's
theatre features a huge guitar neck towering above the fabulous
old-time theatre marquee spelling out Jim Stafford's name in glorious
neon lights," Van said. "Jim is also a stereo enthusiast.
He even has Random Dot Stereo posters hanging on the wall of his
theatre restrooms." "After showing Jim some of the various
Branson 3-D shots I'd taken, Jim told me he had just acquired
a copy of the book 'HOLLYWOOD 3-D' and some new computer stereogram
programs. In fact, several audience members wearing 3-D glasses
were featured in the ad for Jim's theatre in the as past issue
of the Branson/Lakes area Chamber of Commerce Vacation Guide."
Jim and some of his theatre cast members also appear on stage
in another stereo view taken during a live performance.
"I am really proud of the 3-D shot I got of Marvel Cave,"
Van stated. "Marvel Cave is located under Silver Dollar City.
You can take a walking tour of the cave that lasts about an hour.
I climbed down into Marvel Cave twice to get the one shot I am
most proud of. I set my stereo camera rig up on a tripod and focus
on the huge stairway tower leading into the cave. It was a partly
cloudy day following an early morning rainshower. Water is constantly
dripping through the huge sinkhole opening at the roof of the
cave's "Cathedral Room." I took four or five shots of
the same scene. The sun had gone behind a cloud so the light coming
in the cave's opening illuminated the wet rocks with a soft blue
aura without burning the image. The blue light also illuminates
the rocks at the bottom of the cave several stories below. The
tower lamps perfectly light up the cave's interior showing the
walkways leading further down." "At one time they inflated
several hot air balloons and floated them inside the cave,"
Van said. " I would have loved to have been in the cave when
they did that. It would be a great 3-D picture!" If you can't
visit Marvel Cave in person, this is the next best thing to being
there. Before the huge tower was built for visitors to casually
walk down to the bottom of the cave, there was a ladder fixed
from the top of the sinkhole to the cave floor. Imagine having
to climb a ladder nearly as tall as the Statue of Liberty to enter
the cave. If the Statue of Liberty was set inside the cave, only
the tip of the torch would be sticking out of the ground.
Superstar Kenny Rogers appears on the reels courtesy of his manager,
entertainment mogul Ken Kragen. The 3-D photo of Kenny Rogers
was taken during one of his exclusive appearances at "The
"The view of Shepherd of the Hills Outdoor Theatre was taken
at night without the aid of lights. The shot was only illuminated
by the light coming out the barrels of the actor's guns. In the
timed exposure, you see the flare of the gunblasts during the
crucial gunfight scene."
"Some of Branson's history is displayed in the view at Mutton
Hollow Craft and Entertainment Village. The scene shows an beautifully
restored antique carousel and scenic ferris wheel which were part
of a carnival that once had it's winter home in Branson."
most difficult thing I had to do was pick out the best twenty-one
shots to use on the reels," Van said. "There were so
many great shots I wanted to include. The hardest was deciding
between using the daytime or night slides of The Grand Palace.
In the night view, the quality of the exposure was so good you
could even tell the difference between the colors of the flowers
in front of the building...but the daytime view had the best 3-D
effect." The Grand Palace view shows the best "depth"
of any of the images appearing on the reels.
"One of the most unique things about the Branson, Missouri
reels is the variety of subject featured," Van said. "I
know there are collectors of 3-D views of caves, carousels, entertainers,
scenics, theme parks, and more. All of these are represented on
the Branson reels."
Branson is home to about three dozen indoor theatres and four
outdoor theatres, too, capable of seating more than 50,000 people
on any day.
The "Showboat Branson Belle" offers themed entertainment
in its three story opera house aboard the football sized craft
on Table Rock Lake. The Showboat Branson Belle was christened
by co-owner Kenny Rogers on April 13, 1995. Celebrities including
Loni Anderson were on board the maiden cruise. The ship was set
afloat by sliding on banana peels down the ramp leading to the
water's edge near Branson's Tablerock Dam. I have several 3-D
photo taken of the showboat during it's construction. One image
shows the boat before the wheelhouse was added. The view
on the reels shows the boat steaming across Lake Tayneycomo, which
is nationally known for it's brown and rainbow trout fishing.
The Shepherd of the Hills Outdoor Theatre is named for one of
the most popular novels in publishing history, Harold Bell Wright's
"The Shepherd of the Hills." 70 native players bring
the novel to life each evening at the enormous amphitheatre at
the site of the nation's most popular outdoor historical drama.
"White Water" theme park offers a wave pool, lazy river,
and faster, wetter rides in a tropical atmosphere. An exciting
view taken from atop the Paradise Plunge water slide showing Branson's
famous 76 Country boulevard in the distance is featured on the
reels. Several people who have looked at this view give it what
I call the "WOW FACTOR!" When they look at the picture,
they almost always say, "Wow," and kind of sway since
it appears to them they are suddenly several stories in the air
at the top of the water slide.
"Branson Scenic Railway" carries passengers through
the scenic Ozarks from Reeds Spring, Missouri, through Branson,
to Bergman Arkansas in Vista-Dome cars. Light meals are available
on board. Their headquarters is located in downtown Branson and
their view shows one of the historic trains stretching in the
distance in one of the highlights of the 3-D tour.
"The Baldknobbers Hillbilly Jamboree" is the show that
started it all in Branson. By 1960, the five Mabe brothers started
performing a country music show as "The Baldknobbers"
on the Taneycomo lakefront in Branson. The show features top country
hits, country classics and comedy guaranteed to make you belly
laugh. Stub Meadows and Droopy Drawers will tickle your funny
bone in their 3-D picture.
"Shenandoah South Theatre" has been home to such superstar
performers as Johnny Cash and Anita Bryant. Wayne Newton also
performed there when it was known as "The Wayne Newton Theatre."
The 3-D image shows the theatre in all it's glory.
Recording star Tony Orlando's "Yellow Ribbon Music Theatre"
is a nine million dollar fully modern theatre that seats 2,000
in state of the art comfort while they listen to Tony's hits like
"Knock Three Times and My Sweet Gypsy Rose." The 3-D
tour shows the yellow ribbons tied to the trees among the beautiful
flowers in front of Tony's magnificent theatre. My parents and
sister were thrilled at the quality and entertainment value they
enjoyed at Tony's show. The 3-D view shows the outside of Tony's
theatre with lots of tiny "yellow ribbons" tied to the
Cristy Lane is noted for the inspirational hit "One Day at
a Time." The show at her theatre has something for everyone.
Many guest artists also appear on stage at "The Cristy Lane
Theatre." The exterior of Cristy's unique theatre shows a
huge photo of Cristy to thousands of Branson guests.
Branson's most spectacular theatre is "The Five Star Theatre."
Superstar Wayne Newton headlined at the Five Star Theatre and
it was renamed "The Wayne Newton Theatre." Comedian
Ray Stevens is also appeared at the theatre.
There is also a 3-D photo of historic downtown Branson, which
is visited by hundreds of bus tours during their trip to Branson.
A wonderful night time scene show several Branson visitors looking
into the windows of the remarkable downtown stores.
The Branson reels contain a vast array of items that make it of
interest to collector's of 3-D views, such as a cave view for
cave collectors, a view of a carousel and ferris wheel for those
collectors, entertainers for those who like to collect famous
people's images, theme park scenes, a train scene which always
lends itself to great 3-D and more. The Branson, Missouri
View-Master® 3-reel set is a limited edition. Only 2,500
custom-made sets were produced.
of View-Master® reels have joined together to hunt for older reels,
too. The collector's visit flea markets, garage sales and
conventions to look for View-Master® collectibles. View-Master®
reels and viewers were formally introduced at the New York World's
Fair in 1939 and at the Golden Gate Exposition in 1940. It became
an instant national success.