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You are listening to "Missouri Rag"

HERE WE ARE IN JEFFERSON CITY, CAPITAL OF MISSOURI

We can all just stay in the Chevy since we're going to take a driving tour of Jefferson City. Right up ahead is the....

Capitol Building. The Capitol Complex has its own police force.

Look over to your left.

This lovely Georgian house is the Governor's Mansion. It is separated from the Capitol Complex by a beautiful garden which is often used for wedding ceremonies.

Straight up ahead is the Cole County Courthouse. Impressive, isn't it?

As we leave Jefferson City and head south, look over to your right at those gorgeous granite bluffs. The Bald Eagle is often seen here surveying his domain.

OUR NEXT STOP IN CENTRAL MISSOURI IS A MUST SEE. IT'S THE LAKE OF THE OZARKS.

The Lake of the Ozarks is Missouri's premier vacation spot. It came into existence almost 70 years ago with the undertaking known as the Great Osage Project. At the time, it was the largest man-made lake in the world.

It has 1,375 miles of scenic shoreline and offers boating, fishing, skiing and swimming. It is a 57,000 acre lake containing 617 billion gallons of water, fed by the Osage, Niangua and Glaize Rivers.

Construction of Bagnell Dam began August 6, 1929. Four months later the stock market crashed. While the rest of the nation was caught in The Great Depression, the mammoth Bagnell Dam undertaking brought growth to central Missouri which continues today.

This is one of the lovely golf courses in the area.

The City of Lake Ozark is a rapidly growing community located in the beautiful hill country surrounding the lake for which it is named. You can test your skills in the arcades along The Strip in town.

There are guided tours which take you down Indian trails where you can view the wonders of the region...or you can just enjoy the lovely sunsets on the lake.

The Mountain Man Rendevouz is a unique and fun event held annually at Lake of the Ozarks.

Men and women, thousands of them, come from all over the country to participate in the competition.

Competition includes the black powder novelty, silhouette, knife, hawk and fire starting.

Despite its name, women are welcome to compete and, in fact, have proven themselves more than capable "Mountain Men."

This is a wonderful place to shop for handmade crafts, often sold by people wearing authentic costumes.


On our way south, we're passing through Mark Twain National Forest.

This huge area of forested land is located in south and central Missouri, and extends from St. Francois Mountains to the nation's most ancient mountains, the Ozarks.

The Ozark Mountains are unique. They run east and west, whereas most mountains run north and south.

As our Chevy rolls along, just a little to the southwest, we come to Wilson's Creek National Battlefield. The battle fought here on August 10, 1861, was the first major Civil War engagement west of the Mississippi River. It is here where the first Union General, Nathaniel Lyon, met his death.

These old cars have a lot of power, and we're going for a short drive through the beautiful Ozark Mountains.

Aren't they lovely?

OK...everyone start tapping your toes and clapping your hands. We're headed for Branson, Missouri.

Click on the license plate, and we'll be off.