Unique Things to Do in Springfield, MO

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Forget the usual things you do when visiting a place; instead, allow yourself to experience some unique things Springfield offers!

As Missouri’s third-largest city, Springfield has become a destination to explore for families, couples, and friends due to its small-town charms but big-city amenities. Read on and discover the unique things to do in Springfield, MO.

I. Sprightly Parks and Recreation

Sprightly Parks and Recreation

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Outdoor activities and peaceful escape abound in Springfield, Missouri, with the city’s many parks and recreation offerings.

Whether you possess a passion for fitness, an appreciation for nature, or simply seek a serene haven for relaxation, the parks within Springfield, Missouri, offer a plethora of engaging activities to cater to your interests and desires.

Here are some of the recommended parks you can visit:

Covering a vast expanse of 80 acres, this park serves as an ideal destination for individuals looking to establish a deeper connection with nature. The park features three miles of scenic walking trails, educational programs, and nature exhibits. It also has a self-guided exhibit area, gift shop, auditorium, classrooms, and restrooms.

Spanning 7 acres, visitors can walk through paths featuring Zen Gardens, Cherry Trees, and a Koi Pond in authentic Japanese fashion. Visitors can buy bags of Koi food for $1 at the front desk to treat the Koi fish.

There’s also a traditional teahouse and aesthetic zig-zag bridge. Moreover, don’t forget to attend the annual Japanese-themed Fall Festival in the garden if you’re in Springfield during the fall! The park is open only from April to October, so check your travel dates before visiting.

The park features a disc golf course, park trails, a soccer field, and picnic areas perfect for relaxation while enjoying lunch.

This park is perfect for having fun and chilling out with friends or family. The park provides a swimming pool, courts for tennis enthusiasts, and trails by the creek where visitors can stroll around.

The park also has plenty of trees, making it a pleasant and refreshing spot, especially during summer.

5. Tom Watkins Park

The park is one of the best places for group activities and family outings, with its sports fields, playground, and pavilion. The park’s open spaces provide places to play games like frisbee, fly a kite, or simply relax and escape the busy city life.

II. Culinary Adventures in Springfield

Culinary Adventures in Springfield

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With many excellent restaurants, from coffee shops to food trucks to high-end dining, Springfield’s culinary delights await every corner, waiting for you to explore its diverse and delectable food scene. Here are some restaurants you should check out while in Springfield.

It is one of Springfield’s unique restaurants that is ideal for a satisfying meal. It offers farm-to-table meals in a historic mill built in 1933.


  • Chicken & Dumplings – A flavorful slow-cooked chicken stew paired with delicate cornbread gnocchi and fresh herbs.
  • Smoked Salmon Dip – Features Ozark Mill at Finley Farms’s own-house smoked salmon. It has a rich and creamy whipped herb and caper cream cheese blend. The dish is served alongside crisp, seeded crackers for a perfect balance of textures.
  • Smoked Chicken Wings – Three whole wings smoked to perfection, generously coated with sorghum sesame, and garnished with fresh cilantro for added burst of herbal freshness.

Restaurant Information:

Try all the Bambino’s favorites and a selection of wonderful desserts locals love at Bambino’s Cafe! For three consecutive years, this restaurant has been selected as the Best Place For Date-Night Dinner, Best Italian Food, and Best Restaurant by the Missouri State University newspaper, The Standard.


  • Turkey & Swiss Panini – This delicious sandwich features smoked sliced turkey breast with Swiss cheese. It is complemented by lettuce, juicy tomato, and a touch of creamy mayonnaise for a perfect blend of savory and fresh goodness.
  • Greek Salad – Crispy lettuce and mixed greens combined with signature house dressing. The juicy tomatoes, red onions, cucumbers, peppers, kalamata olives, and feta cheese flavor add freshness to the dish.
  • The Ziti – Traditional baked ziti featuring tender chunks of roasted beef braised in red wine and tomato sauce. A touch of cream is added and generously smothered in melted mozzarella cheese for a hearty and satisfying dinner.

Restaurant Information:

An excellent hip indoor-outdoor spot for lunch or dinner located at Springfield’s Park Center Square offers American dishes and drinks.


  • Chicken and Waffles – Delightful and crispy hand-breaded chicken paired with signature waffle elevated with choice of sauce.
  • Seafood Beignets – Features hand-battered shrimp, white fish, cream cheese, and flavorful red onion. It is served alongside a duo of dipping sauces: honey habanero and blueberry ketchup.
  • Pork Belly Banh Mi Tacos – Sweet and savory pork belly complemented by field greens, sriracha mayo, pickled carrots, and the refreshing touch of fruit pico. All of this goodness is lovingly nestled in soft flour tortillas.

Restaurant Information:

Offering chef-inspired pub dishes and award-winning beers since 1997. Springfield Brewing Co. is Springfield’s original brewpub and a cornerstone of Downtown Springfield.


  • Chicken & Waffles – A mouthwatering fluffy Belgian waffle topped with two perfectly crispy pieces of fried chicken. Drizzle it with the sweetness of maple syrup, or add a spicy kick with BrewCo hot syrup.
  • Brewhouse Burger – Two smashed patties with savory goodness of crispy bacon, fried onions, and special 417-lager smoked cheddar beer cheese. All this goodness is sandwiched between a pretzel bun.
  • Walnut Street Wheat – A refreshing, unfiltered wheat beer that embodies the American style with a dry and subtly tartness from the wheat and floral hop notes.

Restaurant Information:

III. Artistic Marvels at Every Corner

Artistic Marvels at Every Corner

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Exploring the city’s art scene is one of the enriching and unique things to do in Springfield, MO. Springfield will greet art lovers with its vibrant culture, arts, and things to do at every corner of the city! Here are some places and things to do you should try at Springfield.

10. Visit Art Galleries

Many galleries throughout Springfield showcase works of local, national, and international artists. Museums also do exhibits and rotating exhibits for visitors to explore different artworks.

Other galleries also provide activities, such as pottery and painting. Here are some art gallery recommendations you can visit.

  • Fresh Gallery Fine Art – Fresh Gallery is where more than 20 local artists from Springfield showcase their work. These selected members manage the gallery together, bringing their unique skills in painting, jewelry making, sculpting, pottery, mixed media, woodworking, glass art, and photography.
  • Springfield Sculpture Walk – It is an outdoor sculpture museum with sculptures visitors can see by strolling through downtown Springfield. The sculpture collection changes every year, so there are always new pieces.
  • Springfield Art Museum – It is Springfield’s oldest cultural institution that showcases American and global works of art for free.

11. Visit Murals at Springfield

Create Instagrammable photos as you stroll around Springfield. You can find many places throughout the city with beautiful artwork by muralists and artists.

12. Enjoy Theatre Performances and Performance Arts

Springfield has a thriving theater scene that boasts various performances. You will experience the incredible talent of local performers and the city’s rich art scene. Some theaters also provide workshops so visitors can try the art of performance.

  • Springfields Little Theater – It is one of the community theaters in Missouri that hosts plays, musicals, various music programs, and local opera and ballet performances.
  • Springfield Ballet – Provides high-quality professional dance performances since 1975. They also offer classical ballet training and outreach programs.
  • Springfield Theater Center – A non-profit organization that has been providing quality entertainment since 1947.

13. Art Festivals and Events

One more thing that only some people usually do when visiting the city is attending Springfield, MO, holiday events. Many festivals and events are held at Springfield annually, which kids and adults can enjoy.

Some festivals you can look forward to are the annual Artsfest(April or early May), First Friday Art Walk (first Friday of every month), Central Film Festival (April), and Springfield Jazz Festival (September).

IV. Historical Treasures Unveiled

Historical Treasures Unveiled

Hop on a journey through time with significant cultural, artistic, and historical treasures that reflect Springfield’s rich history.

If you are looking for other unique things to do in Springfield, MO, you can visit the city’s many museums and historical sites that allow you to tour and learn.

Here are some museums you can visit:

  • History Museum on the Square – Discover and learn how Springfield was important in significant events in American history. The museum features hands-on experiences, world-class exhibits, and activities that all ages can enjoy.
  • Wonders of Wildlife National Museum – This establishment will take you on a journey through immersive habitats where you can enjoy and learn. The museum shares America’s influential conservationists from the past and today, honoring those who engage in hunting, fishing, and caring for the environment.
  • History of Hearing Museum – It is an interesting and quirky museum that showcases hearing devices, old testing machines, and advanced hearing technology.

Here are Historical Sites you should add to your bucket list!

  • Lincoln Home National Historic Site – This site was where President Lincoln resided from 1844 until 1861. By visiting this site, you can tour the home, take self-guided tours through several exhibits on the grounds, watch a short film at the visitors center, and explore the surrounding neighborhood.
  • Old State Capitol – The old state capitol served as the state capitol from 1840 until 1876. Abraham Lincoln, a lawyer and politician, gave his famous speech in 1858 called “A House Divided” on the front steps of this historic building. Visitors can freely tour the surrounding grounds with gardens and paths. Visitors can also choose between a guided or self-guided tour to explore the building.
  • Washington Park Botanical Garden – This is a perfect choice if you want a quiet site to visit. It features more than 1,800 types of plants, like flowers, trees, and a rose garden. It also has tropical greenhouses and a glass-domed conservatory. The site also provides educational workshops year-round.

V. Entertainment Extravaganza

Entertainment Extravaganza

For fun-filled activities to keep you entertained, educated, and enthralled while you are in Springfield, visit the following places that offer unique activities that create unforgettable memories.

14. The Pythian Home of Missouri (Pythian Castle)

The Pythian Castle is different from your typical castle. For some thrill and spooky entertainment, you should visit this castle that is considered haunted.

The Pythian Castle was constructed in 1913 by the Knights of Pythias as an orphanage and later served the U.S. Military for over 50 years. Nowadays, you can join tour history and ghost tours, participate in murder mystery dinners, and attend various holiday events.

15. Watch Games at Hammons Field

Hammons Field is a minor baseball league stadium perfect for sports lovers visiting Springfield. The stadium is great for families, with features like a photo booth, a playground, and a basketball court.

The best part is the all-you-can-eat buffet with America’s favorites like hot dogs, bratwursts, nachos, and more. If you feel like treating yourself, get a ticket to the SpringNet Champions Club.

You’ll enjoy a private buffet, a full-service bar, and reserved seats with fantastic field views. For a more immersive experience, take a tour to explore behind-the-scenes of Hammons Field and learn more about Cardinals baseball.

16. Glide into Ice at Jordan Valley Ice Park

If you want to experience skating, Jordan Valley Ice Park is a must-visit place. It has two extensive skating areas and many activities to enjoy.

You skate around, practice figure skating, or join an ice hockey game. If you’re not into skating yourself, you can come on game days to support the MSU Hockey Bears as they aim to move up in the league.

Unique Things to Do in Springfield, MO

Wrap Up

Springfield, MO, offers a refreshing break from the ordinary with unique things to do, may it be visiting parks and enjoying the recreation it provides, trying the excellent culinary cuisine of Springfield, or diving into fun by visiting places filled with unique activities!

Overall, Springfield will indeed give you an unforgettable experience, whether with your family, partner, or friends.

Please call or message if you have questions or want to learn more about Springfield, MO. I will gladly answer your inquiries and help you to enjoy all things Springfield to the fullest! You can connect with our team or me by calling 417-241-6565 or sending an email to office@gatewaymo.com.

You may also follow us on our social media to be updated with Springfield’s latest news and events.

Springfield, MO

Frequently Asked Questions

What makes Springfield unique is even though it has a small-town charm, it still offers many diverse things to do. You can enjoy the same things you do when visiting other places and experience unique things and places you can only find at Springfield.

From visiting parks, its diverse food scene, art community, places with special activities, Springfield festival and events, and its rich history.

To find more information about events at Gillioz Theatre, visit their Facebook or website page, where they post upcoming events.

For a great and memorable night at Springfield, you should visit clubs or bars, especially rooftop bars offering fantastic drinks and spectacular views.

Some places hold live music with local or national artists, so make sure to put it on your list of things to do if you want a fun and memorable nightlife.

Yes! All family members can enjoy the activities in the parks, museums, galleries, festivals, events, and other places mentioned above. The restaurants are family-friendly as they offer a kid menu that your kids will enjoy.

Admission to Sculpture Walk is free, and there’s no other cost when visiting it.