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Missouri on Exhibit

From St. Louis to Kansas City, museums showcase the best of Missouri.

The Show Me State has plenty to show church groups. From fantastic music museums to art and cultural institutions, a presidential library and even a partial re-creation of the Titanic, museums serve as fascinating anchor attractions in communities around Missouri.

This itinerary starts in St. Louis, heads west to Columbia, in the center of the state, and then continues to Independence and nearby Kansas City. It ends in Branson, in southern Missouri. From there, groups can either continue south into Arkansas or return to Kansas City or St. Louis to depart.

Groups should allow five days and four nights to complete this trip from beginning to end, although they may choose to add an extra night or two in Branson to enjoy more of the city’s entertainment.

Learning the Blues St. Louis

St. Louis, the unofficial gateway to the western United States, has a host of museums that are popular with groups. Among the most exciting is the National Blues Museum, which opened to much fanfare in 2016. This museum highlights the story of blues music in America with exhibits detailing its development and significance. Groups can see instruments and other items owned by famed blues musicians, and try their hand at performing and recording blues music at a series of interactive stations spread throughout the museum.

For more museum opportunities, groups can head to Forest Park, a 1,293-acre park in urban St. Louis that has a number of museums open free to the public. Highlights include the Missouri History Museum, the St. Louis Art Museum and the St. Louis Science Center, in addition to the St. Louis Zoo.

Student groups often make time to visit City Museum, an inventive downtown institution full of whimsical interactive and educational exhibits.

While you’re there: St. Louis’ most iconic attraction, the Gateway Arch, is a must on any group itinerary in the area. The museum at the arch and the park surrounding it have recently completed an extensive round of renovations and improvements.

Brian Jewell

Brian Jewell is the executive editor of The Group Travel Leader. In more than a decade of travel journalism he has visited 48 states and 25 foreign countries.