Join Editor-in-Chief Joshua Heston along with Ethan Grubaugh and Dale Grubaugh. Ethan and Josh get preoccupied with their shared love of Mystery Science Theater 3000 before bringing publisher Dale into the studio to talk the many regions of the Ozarks.

Podcast Partners: Josh Huxtable, SOTO Patron, Christine Riutzel, Beauty from Light; Shepherd the Musical: Rediscovering America’s Story, Stafford’s Barber Shop & Shave Company: The Place for Men in Downtown Branson, Taney County Health Department: Creating Opportunities for Healthy Lives in Our Community, and Blue Rock Print Company: Upgrade Your Look!

Been Thinkin’ About… the Ozarks.

No surprise there. More specifically, though, I’ve been thinking about just how far the Ozarks region ranges. If you’re not careful, you might end up in the Ozarks without knowing it. And you might up and unintentionally fall out of the Ozarks. Strange, huh?

So, where are the Ozarks (and where are they not)?

Lamar and Liberal, Missouri, are two towns not in the Ozarks.

The hills and rolling meadows of the Springfield Plain give way to a certain windswept flatness associated with Kansas… though the Ozarks are, technically, only 10 miles or so away.

Far to the north, Boonsboro, Missouri, is part of the Ozarks.

The town is within the Outer Ozark Border which stretches north of the Missouri River.

The Illinois bluffs across from Cape Girardeau are included as well.

Sikeston, in the Mississippi River plain, is not in the Ozarks. But a big chunk of the Ozarks includes Oklahoma.


We’ve got great stories below (as well as the Nineteen Regions of the Ozarks).

This Week’s Stories:

Eastern Ozarks Rendezvous by Clint Lacy

The Harold Bell Wright Era by J. Thomas


The Nature Conservancy defines the Ozarks into 19 separate regions (regions which pay utterly no attention to state boundaries):

  1. The Springfield Plateau stretches across Oklahoma nearly to Tulsa and then snakes eastward all the way across Northwest Arkansas.
  2. The Springfield Plain does actually include Springfield, Missouri, and crosses a small corner of Kansas.
  3. The White River Hills, along with the Bostons, are what most people think of when they think “Ozarks.” The region includes Branson.
  4. The Elk River Hills are over by Noel.
  5. The Lower Boston Mountains spread down to the Arkansas River, reaching nearly to Little Rock.
  6. The Upper Boston Mountains are a central pocket of the Arkansas Ozarks, including some of the roughest, most beautiful terrain of Madison, Carroll and Newton Counties.
  7. The Central Plateau very rudely ignores Missouri and Arkansas boundaries, stretching from the Missouri River all the way down into Sharp County, Arkansas.
  8. The Osage River Hills includes the Lake of the Ozarks.
  9. The Prairie Ozark Border is over by Sedalia and Marshall.
  10. The Gasconade Hills
  11. The Meramec River Hills covers Steelville, Keysville and Cuba as well.
  12. The Current River Hills
  13. The St. Francis Knobs and Basins are over by Ironton.
  14. The Inner Ozark Border reaches from Arrow Rock and Boonville across Jefferson City all the way past Farmington.
  15. The Outer Ozark Border is north of the Missouri River.
  16. The Illinois Ozarks
  17. The Mississippi River Alluvial Plain
  18. The Missouri River Alluvial Plain
  19. The Black River Ozark Border is down by Poplar Bluff.

So, there you have it. Nineteen regions. The five states of Missouri, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Illinois and Kansas.

And so many hills and hollers, if you stretched it out flat, the land would probably cover half of Canada.

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