Historic outdoor Branson, Missouri theater closes

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BRANSON, Mo. (AP) – An outdoor theater in Branson that’s hosted a theatrical adaptation of the Ozarks’ Shepherd of the Hills since 1960 is closing.

The Joplin Globe reports the Shepherd of the Hills Outdoor Theatre announced on Saturday via Facebook that it has presented its last performance.

Owner Sharena Naugher said Monday that the theater recently took out a bank loan on the property due to increasing operating costs and decreasing revenues.

Naugher says the theater was hopeful it could reach this season’s May 27 opening night, but it was notified last week that the bank is foreclosing on the property.

Branson Convention and Visitors Bureau spokeswoman Lynn Berry says the 1907 novel and the theatrical performances of “Shepherd of the Hills” were instrumental in Branson’s growth in the 20th century.

Information from: The Joplin (Mo.) Globe, http://www.joplinglobe.com

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