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Silver Dollar City to Open Rivertown; featuring Mystic Falls, tallest raft ride drop in Western Hemisphere
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Silver Dollar City in Branson, Mo., is investing a cool $27 million into the creation of a new land, Rivertown, with $23 million earmarked for its new water raft ride, the themed Mystic River Falls, which will be the centerpiece of the land.
Also located in this area will be the Rivertown Smokehouse, which marks the theme parks biggest dining investment, with BBQ served up close by the falls, seating 450 diners along the banks of the Mystic River.

The falls will have the tallest raft ride drop in the Western Hemisphere at 45 feet. Both ride and restaurant will open in summer of 2020.

The ride, themed to the history and legend of the Marvel Cave, runs close to a half-mile for an exhilarating 5 and a half minutes, and features high tides, a hidden mine shaft, and sharp hairpin turns. The biggest news is the rafting ride’s drop: from an 82-foot-tall lift tower with a four-platform rotating elevator. Riders will be spinning in the open air as raft seating rotates during the climb. The tower is unique to this ride.

The ride’s river channel will be elevated and run 2100-linear-feet, with a water flow max of 200,000 gallons per minute. 18 rafts will hold eight riders each. The ride is designed and constructed by Silver Dollar City in partnership with R.E.S., Barr Engineering and Herschend Family Entertainment Corporate Development.

The deep storyline is set in the 1880s, and features a character named Pearl Brazen as an explorer who takes guests on her quest to find the headwaters of the titular Mystic River. It will likely be the 4.5 story waterfall conclusion to the ride that will prove the most memorable. Passengers will race down and through the ride’s queue building for this exciting finish.

As the focal point of the newly themed Rivertown, Mystic River Falls will be positioned in an area in which 1880s Rivertown residents will be participating in a celebration of the park’s Diamond Jubilee. The park’s 60th Anniversary Diamond Jubilee will start in March of 2020, with an Anniversary Celebration scheduled for the weekend of May 1, 2020. Mystic River Falls will open during the summer 2020 season.

Billed as a thrilling family adventure, the ride describes the legend of Marvel Cave with its hidden riches, acquired by one William Lynch, who along with daughters named Miriam and Genevieve, began a tour company hiring S. Fred Prince to work for the family surveying, studying and documenting the cave’s many passages and waterways. Ride narrator Pearl Brazen is described as the sisters’ best friend. Their biggest adventures focused on finding the mouth of the Mystic River; Pearl as an adult guide is still captivated at the prospect of finding the river mouth and works as a wilderness guide with husband Leo. The pair challenge the riders as they take on the search with them. Additionally, along with this fully realized backstory, riders will experience the Ozark Mountains as a setting.

Along with riding and dining, visitors to Silver Dollar City will find a wide range of photo ops in front of the river and viewing riders splashing down from Mystic River Falls.

Silver Dollar City will also be offering new celebrations at Halloween and Christmas: Pumpkin Nights and An Old Time Christmas, respectively.

The park’s new Harvest Festival, Pumpkin Nights, will be an evening event filled with glowing pumpkins that will line the park with light from the park’s Town Square along the Pumpkin Pathway to the Grand Exposition as well as a long the Woodland Hike. A dance party event will take place in a new area known as Pumpkin Plaza. Guests will have the opportunity to meet family-friendly characters Peter & Penelope Pumpkin, as well as a master pumpkin carver, Barry Brown, a pumpkin carving artist. New food items will also be presented including choices such as pumpkin spice funnel cake, pumpkin spice lattes, and glow-in-the-dark drinks. All rides at the park will be open until 9 p.m. during the event.
At winter holiday time, Silver Dollar City’s offering features a brand-new edition of their Old Time Christmas event, that includes a new 8-story-tall Christmas tree at the Joy On Town Square area. The 80-foot tree will feature motion filled high-res lights combining music and animated images in with the colors and lights. 

The new Joy On Town Square itself will feature holiday lighting at all of the Square’s buildings, and in trees and landscape, for a total of one million LED lights from trees to buildings and surrounding areas. As a three-time winner of a USA Today 10 Best Readers' Choice poll for the nation's Best Theme Park Holiday Event, the park seeks to keep that record going with the new tree and new holiday shows. Shows will include It’s a Wonderful Life, A Christmas Carol, a Living Nativity, and Frontier Fa-La-La follies. Specifically for kids, the Tinker Junior’s Toy Shop presentation will be interactive. All the shows are touted by the park as having Broadway-style quality, and offer VIP seating for guests as well as general admission.

In short, with Silver Dollar City’s new attractions and events, the theme park is looking to strike gold with park patron visits for its 60th.
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