Sunday we started the day by dining at the Collage of the Ozarks. This collage doesn't charge tuition for full-time students. It has some funding and for the rest, it requires students to work 15 hours a week on campus. Our waiter, a senior, told us the ratio of applicants to enrollment was 19 to 1. One of the ways the college earns money is by putting on an excellent Sunday morning brunch. The room is lovely, with copper ceiling and a view of the river.
And the food is more than worthly of the room. There is a huge array of choices, beautifully prepared, and most importantly, created skillfully with quality ingredients.
We ate biscuits and gravy, cinnamon rolls with gooey frosting, eggs Benedict, quiche, sausage, bacon, ham, lots of soups, cheeses, fried potatoes, freshly-made pasta dishes, salads, baked potatoes, and more desserts than even I could eat. What a way to start the day!
Then we split up for the day, and Aaron, Randy and I returned to Silver Dollar City. Among other things, Randy and I wanted to see that cave. I learned that Silver Dollar City grew up around the Marvel Cave sightseeing attraction. We descended into Marvel Cave via a narrow staircase. This entrance is, I think, the only source of natural light in the cave.
There are several rooms open to tourists, with dramatically-lit formations.
Some sections are very narrow, only allowing single-fill passage, and we had to crouch to get through a couple of area. And there's an underground waterfall that feeds the Mystic River. The sign says the river passage can be accessed by crawling and the end has yet to be found. Sounds like something I'm not going to do.
But there are many gorgeous formations along that area, conveniently lit for us to enjoy.
When we left the cave we headed towards the rides. They both wanted to get on the Giant Barn Swing. Normally I love this kind of ride, but this one swung too high for me. On it's upswing it always looked like it was going to flip over. My brain knows it wouldn't, but my imagination doesn't.
Silver Dollar City has several roller coasters, and Aaron and Randy both like roller coasters. It would not bother me to never get on a roller coaster, so this worked out fine. They went on every roller coaster in the park . . .
while I just waved goodbye as they passed the crest!
They started with Fire in the Hole, which I'd tried yesterday. They went on to Outlaw Run, Thunderation, Powder Keg, and Wildfire. Wildfire has a lot of loops - here they are, hanging upside down. Some people have the oddest idea of fun!
Eventually they ran out of roller coasters so they watched some of the craftsmen at work, like the glass blowers.
In late afternoon we met the rest of the gang and went to the outdoor theater again. Tonights band was Lonestar. Unfortunately their bus had broken down earlier in the day so they were an hour late starting and they didn't get all their sound checks done. But they sounded great. And couple of vendors, just off stage and dressed in old-time long skirts and headscarves, were having such a good time that they seemed to be part of the act. Dancing around in their Amish-looking clothing with a couple of friends, they were just adorable!
Lonestar was great and they did a lot of their hits, but they didn't have the same easy stage present that Diamond Rio did. In fact, the show didn't really jell until the end, when they did a lot of other hits by other people, including "Life in the Fast Lane", "The Wall", even "Rappers' Delight". They were excellent with that stuff!