5 things you can do in Kissimmee while attending the Silver Spurs Rodeo
So, you think the rodeo sounds like a good time, and you’re considering visiting Kissimmee for the Silver Spurs Rodeo this June. You’d have to drive an hour or two, though, so you’d like to make a day of it or even stay overnight. You’ve probably already done the Disney and Universal thing, are waiting to take your kids when they’re older, or just can’t justify the expense of theme park tickets right now.
Are we preaching to the choir yet?
We love Walt Disney World and Universal Studios, but there’s so much more to Kissimmee than characters and rollercoasters! We want to help you make a quick vacation (or staycation for the locals!) out of your trip to Kissimmee. Here are some of our favorite things to do while attending rodeos in Florida:
1. Explore Historic Downtown Kissimmee
Located just 10 minutes from the Silver Spurs Arena, take a trip down Kissimmee’s own memory lane. Just by walking down Broadway – Downtown Kissimmee’s main drag – you’ll see the influence that rodeo and ranch life has on this community. Lamp posts and sidewalks are decorated with bronc riders, cowboy boots, and the iconic American Brahman cow. Along with the cowboy details on the streets, you’ll find scenic street art on some buildings, giving you a glimpse of Kissimmee’s history. Wander in and out of the shops along Broadway and check out Kissimmee Main Street’s Sculpture Experience. Historic Downtown Kissimmee is within walking distance from the newly renovated Kissimmee Lakefront Park. Take a stroll along the shore of Lake Tohopekaliga, and let the kids burn off some energy at the playground and splash pad. Grab an appetizer before the rodeo at one of downtown’s delicious restaurants.
2. Ecotourism Attractions
One of the more underrated things to do in Kissimmee and the St. Cloud area is visiting one of seven ecotourism attractions. Our lakes, creeks, and canals are actually a part of the headwaters of the Florida Everglades! You only need one hour on an airboat to experience the “real” Florida. On these tours, you’ll be able to see native wildlife, such as American alligators and birds of prey (like bald eagles and hawks) in their natural habitat. These attractions are hidden gems! Just remember to keep some sunscreen and hair ties handy while you experience Florida’s natural beauty!
3. Travel Along Famous Highway 192
Whether you’re a Kissimmee native or a first-time visitor, it will be hard not to travel down Highway 192. Serving as the gateway to the tourism industry, Highway 192 has tons of restaurants, small attractions, and shops that will fulfill all of your gift-giving needs! While some shops may have the standard Florida-themed shirts, refrigerator magnets, and sunglasses, you can also pick up some unique items such as orange blossom perfume from Orange World, or an assortment of mineral keychains from the Black Mineral Market at Old Town! Trust us; you’ll find something for everyone you know along this road!
4. Osceola County Welcome Center and History Museum and Pioneer Village at Shingle Creek
Whether you’re a history fanatic or just curious about the history of Osceola County, you’ll want to stop by the Osceola County Welcome Center and History Museum to learn more about the pioneer ranching families that helped establish Osceola’s successful cattle industry, rodeos in Florida, and the science and economics of Central Florida’s ecosystems (you can see the museum for FREE!). When you visit the Pioneer Village at Shingle Creek, you’ll be transported back in time while walking through a collection of authentic structures that were once located throughout Osceola County. Looking for something outdoorsy to do? You can rent canoes, kayaks, and stand-up paddleboards at nearby Shingle Creek Regional Park.
5. Eat Good BBQ
There’s some debate about whether Florida is a true “Southern” state, but there’s no doubt about it – we know how to cook some mean BBQ! Florida is tenth in the nation in beef cattle production; it’s safe to say we know a thing or two about smoked beef, brisket, and burgers. You’ll find a variety of local joints throughout Osceola County serving up some of America’s classic dishes from pulled pork sandwiches to baby back ribs. Fat Boys, Meat n Fire, Big John’s Rockin’ BBQ, Jimmy Bear’s, Rosie’s Smokin’ Hot Bar-B-Que – they’re all winners in our book! You might even lick your plate clean!
Are you ready to rodeo? Join us Friday, May 31st and Saturday, June 1st for the 143rd Silver Spurs Rodeo where you can watch seven of rodeo’s traditional events: bull riding, saddle bronc riding, bareback riding, steer wrestling, tie-down roping, women’s barrel racing, and team roping! Hope to see y’all then!