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The Rolla Daily News - Rolla, MO
  • Day Trippin' — Art, shopping, dining, more at the Lake

  • If you are looking for something to do while at the Lake, look no further. Besides the waterfront dining, shopping at the Outlet Mall and boating you can do, the Lake has more to offer.
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  • If you are looking for something to do while at the Lake, look no further. Besides the waterfront dining, shopping at the Outlet Mall and boating you can do, the Lake has more to offer.
    Here are just a few stops you might want to plan on your next trip to the Lake.
    The Bagnell Dam Strip
    It's almost impossible to come to the Lake without a trip to the Strip. Between the shopping, arcades and restaurants, there is plenty to do at this historic spot. New this year is Lake Ozark Live, a bright outdoor stage for all kinds of entertainment. The best part — it's free.
    Check out Cars & Coffee, held every Saturday from 8-10 a.m. through Sept. 6. There are dance parties every Friday and Saturday  from 7:30-9:30 p.m.
    Other concerts, festivals and events are planned this year so check out www.lakeozarklive.com for updates.
    Willmore Lodge
    Museum
    Located just off of Bagnell Dam, Willmore Lodge is a must-stop if you are interested in learning about the Lake's history. The Adirondack-style lodge was built in 1930 as the main administrative offices and entertainment facility for Union Electric's Bagnell Dam construction project.
    Today, the two-story log structure is home to the Lake Area Chamber of Commerce and is a cultural activities center, but it also houses a museum. The museum highlights an exhibit about life in the area before the dam (including an exhibit about the Osage Indians), a room presenting information about the construction of the dam from start to finish, an area dedicated to the form and function of Bagnell Dam, and an exhibit concerning the geography, geology, flora and fauna of the Lake.
    Willmore Lodge is open all year Mondays though Fridays from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and weekends from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.
    More information is available at www.willmorelodge.com.
    Seaplane Rides
    Seeing Lake of the Ozarks from the air is truly amazing. You can spot all of the Lake landmarks from a seaplane onboard two sightseeing tours available this summer. Ha Ha Tonka, Bagnell Dam, Horseshoe Bend, and more can be spotted on a ride.
    Jones Brothers Air & Seaplane adventures has tours from 10 to 65 minutes at Coconuts. Prices vary depending on the number of passengers (from $29-$299). Call 573-434-0284 or go to www.jonesairandsea.com.
    Nauti Wings Seaplane Tours docks at several Lake locations. On the weekends you can find pilot Jamie Huey at Bear Bottom Resort and is often at other popular spots including Shady Gators, Backwater Jack's and Captain Ron's to name a few. He's even picked up people at their own dock. Depending on the number of passengers, flights range from $25-149 per person on rides that are anywhere from 14 to 65 minutes.
    Page 2 of 2 - Check Facebook to see where he's at and for updates. Call 573-257-0727 to schedule an appointment and go to www.nautiwings.com for more information.
    Maximum of three people per ride.
    The Vine Wine Bar
    and Art Gallery
    Cool off inside and enjoy food, wine and art. The Vine Wine Bar and Art Gallery in Osage Beach offers all three. There is not other venue like it at Lake of the Ozarks. You can sit at the bar and sip wine or tour the galleries displaying a variety of art.    
    The Vine, formerly known as "The Sturdevant Art Gallery" is impressive. The wine list is made up of a large variety of sparkling, white and red wines. There is also a selection of domestic and a few specialty beers you may never have heard about but will want to try. The food is fresh and made of many homemade ingredients including the Vine’s own hummus recipe and pita bread.
    Once you are done checking out the menu, browse through the gallery's four wings where there is a mix of local and other well-known artists. The gallery has many works by local artists Joseph and Rita Orr and Bill Manion. If you find one you like, take it home with you.
    Location: 1375 Route KK, Osage Beach
    Hours: Tuesday-Thursday 5-10 p.m., Friday and Saturday open at 11 a.m.
    Online: www.thevinegallery.com
    State Parks
    With its 17,600 acres, Lake of the Ozarks State Park is at the top of the list of places to visit here. And for those who prefer to spend the night under the stars, there are hundreds of campsites to choose from. Bring your RV, pitch a tent or stay in one of the rustic cabins or yurts throughout the year.  
    Sites are fully operational with water and showers from April 1-Oct. 31, but the campground is open all year long. And overnight accommodations don't come much cheaper. Campsite rates range from $13 to $23 per night.
    Enjoy a beach area, picnic shelter, marina and other amenities. You can rent a canoe or kayak on a quiet spot on the Lake. According to park specialist Adam Enboden, an estimated 34,000 campers stayed at the Lake of the Ozarks State Park in 2013.
    Ha Ha Tonka, of course, is known for it's stone castle. The ruins are located on top of a bluff and it's easily accessible (if you don't take the path with the stairs!). Plus, there are miles of hiking trails, springs, caverns and sinkholes.  The view from the castle path is simply spectacular in all directions.
     
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