True to Life. True to Us.

There are so many reasons why people love Springfield — its small town charm with a big city vibe, its famous local cuisine, its thriving sports scene and prospering local business community — just to name a few. In this “True Talk” video series, Springfield business owners/managers and residents talk about why they love Springfield — and why you will too.

Season 2

Askinosie Chocolate

Sometimes while strolling down C-Street, the rich aroma of chocolate fills the air giving a preview of what it’s like to visit Springfield’s famous small batch bean-to-bar chocolate manufacturer. Inside the factory, dark chocolate bars sourced from around the world are on display as well as the machinery that creates the magic. Askinosie Chocolate has been in business for almost 10 years and has been winning awards for their chocolate almost every year they’ve been in business.

Ms Gilmore's Tea Room and Vintage Suitcase

The elaborate storefront is an indication of what you’re about to experience in Ms. Gilmore’s Tea Room and Vintage Suitcase — and as you walk in, the sensory overload delivers. A beautiful blown-glass sculpture hangs from the ceiling and every available space is filled with everything from home decor to clothing to antiques.

Big Whiskey's American Restaurant & Bar

Big Whiskey’s is also famous for its selection of wings that includes 14 flavors, steaks, salads and burgers. Oh and, of course, its collection of over 100 whiskeys — one of the fastest trending spirits in the world. On your next visit to Springfield, don’t pass up Big Whiskey’s and the best buffalo chicken dip you’ll ever have.

Itty Bitty City

Itty Bitty City is a creative play center designed for children eight and younger that combines fun with developmental components — making it an educational experience for children and parents. 

Springfield Ballet

When the Springfield Ballet was founded in 1976, it was started as an organization to bring in professional ballet performing groups to the Queen City and has since transformed into a successful ballet school in its own right.

Cafe Cusco

Springfield’s Cafe Cusco bills itself as a fun little café with recipes inspired by the healthy cuisine of Peru and the Andes Mountains.

Creative Escape Glass

Creative Escape Glass in Springfield, Missouri is a full working studio where visitors can create works of art with a personal touch.

Pythian Castle

Experience history and culture at Springfield's only castle. From history tours to haunted tours, Pythian Castle is an attraction for all ages.

The Trolley Bike

The Trolley Bike is the biggest party on wheels in the Queen City.

Chabom Teas + Spices

Chabom Teas + Spices on historic C-Street in Springfield is one of the most unique local shops in the city. The owners of Cafe Cusco — just down the street from Chabom — wanted to share the spices they use in their food with others and the idea for the eclectic shop was born.

Wilson's Creek National Battlefield

Wilson's Creek National Battlefield, one of six national parks in the state of Missouri, is a perfect stop for an entertaining and educational experience.

Talking Rocks Cavern

Talking Rocks Cavern gives you a window into a part of the Ozarks that you normally don’t see or even think about — natural beauty beneath the Ozark Mountains.

The Hibiscus Jerk Hut

The Hibiscus Jerk at Springfield, Missouri's Food Truck Park is famous for its traditional Jamaican food including jerk chicken, pastas, curry dishes and more.

Season 1

Dickerson Park Zoo

Springfield’s Dickerson Park Zoo opened its doors in 1922 and has remained true to its roots ever since. Zookeepers here make it a point to interact with the public and ensure a memorable experience. It’s an intimate zoo complete with behind the scenes tours, animal paintings and even tiger and giraffe feedings — a zoo with opportunities like nowhere else.

Farmers Market of the Ozarks

Farmers Market of the Ozarks is unique to Springfield, drawing vendors to the Queen City from a 150 mile radius of town, covering the entire Ozarks region. It’s the only market in town where you can grab a Bloody Mary from an Ozarks distillery, sip a cup of local coffee and purchase local produce all in one place.

Gilardi's Ristorante

Gilardi’s Ristorante is a downtown Springfield icon 18 years and counting. By sourcing their food locally, they provide fresh Italian meals and support local farmers at the same time. Gilardi’s adds to a bustling downtown complete with similar restaurants, a boutique hotel and exciting night spots.

Leong's Asian Diner

The one that started it all — Leong’s Asian Diner — invented the now famous Springfield-style Cashew Chicken here decades ago. David Leong, the creator of the original recipe has been called the godfather of Cashew Chicken. The Leong family says they are proud to call Springfield home.

Crosstown Barbecue

Crosstown Barbecue is unique to Springfield because it’s really the only Kansas City-style barbecue in town. You’re not going to find another restaurant in town that can match the atmosphere at Crosstown. It’s about friendship, love and good food.

Springfield Cardinal's Baseball

The Springfield Cardinals say they have the best fans in minor league baseball. There’s such a pride in Springfield for Cardinals baseball and they only add to the fact that Springfield is a fun place to work and play.

Big Momma's Coffee & Espresso Bar

Big Momma’s Coffee and Espresso Bar is anyones home-away-from-home on Springfield’s historic Commercial Street (C-Street). A staple on C-Street for almost a decade, Big Momma’s represents everything that is interesting and unique about Springfield’s booming small business community. Built on family, friends, good food and excellent coffee, Big Momma’s is the perfect compliment to the relaxed, slower-paced atmosphere the city has to offer.

London Calling Pasty Company

London Calling Pasty Company brings a taste of London to the heart of the Ozarks. As the food truck craze has taken hold in Springfield, London Calling is making its mark as something different, and quite British, on Springfield’s food scene. A British pasty — It’s not just what’s on the outside that counts.

Mother's Brewing Company

A nice beer makes the occasion better — that thought alone brought the first craft brewery to the Queen City of the Ozarks. Mother’s Brewing Company in downtown Springfield produces brews that are now well-known across the region and has helped make the downtown area a vibrant, modern city-within-a-city.


Rebekah Polly is a member of Springfield’s vibrant creative community. She founded Artivities as an interactive art studio specializing in creative classes for all ages and skill levels.

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