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Monday, Dec. 22, 2014
Have you seen Big Springs lately?Posted Wednesday, September 26, 2007, at 5:59 AM
Actually, I hadn't been to the Van Buren getaway since my husband and I were dating, and that's ....let's see...at least forty years ago. I've driven through Van Buren on my way to Springfield hundreds of times, and I always thought, "Mmmm...I need to go down and see Big Springs again," but I never did it. The park is about four miles from Van Buren and is SUPER worth the trip. I had also forgotten that it's a national park, and I am SURE that it didn't have all those restrooms when I was there 40 years ago! (Yes, I know, all you smart alecs are saying, "Well, Madeline, they didn't have indoor plumbing when you were young, did they??")
Judging from the parking lots, they do get crowds at least part of the year, but we were there in the middle of the week, and it was absolutely idyllic! The grounds are kept like a golf course, and, since they have obviously received more rain than we have, it was so GREEN! My friend and I ate a picnic lunch at one of the picnic tables, listening to the sound of rushing water from the spring.
I also didn't remember the stone path that leads from the caves, up along the hillside. Surely, that wasn't there 40 years ago! It looks like something out of a Tarzan movie!
The trip illustrates to me how I've taken our own Missouri attractions for granted all these years. I took my students on two trips to Europe, when there are so many things to see in our own home state.
I don't have anything monumental to say about all this. I just wanted you to see this beautiful attraction, which is two hours away! Sample the water cress while you're there!
From the hills of Tillman, Missouri, this is your rural trip advisor, Madeline, signing off.
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Madeline (Giles) DeJournett is the Advance writer for the North Stoddard Countian. A retired high school English/history teacher, she spent 32 years teaching in 5 schools in Missouri and Alaska. These days, she lives quietly with a menagerie of wild and domestic animals on 52 secluded acres in the remote Tillman hills south of Advance. She graduated from Dexter High School in 1960 and Southeast Missouri State in 1964. She can be contacted at email@example.com or by phone at 573-722-5322.
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