My husband and I were in Branson for an early spring weekend two years ago, and we kept running into Elvis Presley everywhere we went. There were Elvis look-alikes in the restaurants, at the shopping malls, and strolling the sidewalks in the historic downtown area.
We had booked tickets for the Legends in Concert Elvis impersonator show in advance, on the recommendation of several friends. When we arrived at Dick Clark's American Bandstand Theater, there were Elvises galore in the lobby and in the audience, and the show hadn't even started yet.
Come to find out, that weekend was the annual Branson Elvis Festival, but we didn't know it ahead of time. That's why the King of Rock 'n' Roll was everywhere we looked!
Fast forward to 2015, and Elvis will once again be roaming the streets of Branson this weekend, March 27-29, for the ninth annual Branson Elvis Festival, presented by the Legends in Concert.
The highlight of the festival is the Ultimate Elvis Tribute Artist Contest at 7 p.m. March 28 at the Dick Clark American Bandstand Theater, 1600 West Highway 76. The contest is sanctioned by Elvis Presley Enterprises, and the Branson winner will compete in the national event in Memphis in August.
Other festival events at the American Bandstand Theater include a Meet and Greet Dinner with the Elvis hopefuls at 5 p.m. March 27; a kids' Elvis contest at 10 a.m. March 28; a vendor village packed with Elvis merchandise from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. March 28; and Elvis contestant karaoke from 10:15 p.m. March 27 and 28 in Club 57 at the theater.
For ticket prices and reservations, contact the theater box office at 417-339-3003 or visit www.legendsinconcert.com.
In addition, there will be a gospel performance, featuring some of Elvis's favorite gospel tunes, at 10 a.m. March 29 at Branson Gospel Sunday at Hamners' Variety Theater, 3090 Shepherd of the Hills Expressway; 417-334-4363. Admission is free.
Elvis has left the building, and he's headed for Branson this weekend.