Pythian Castle, also known as the Pythian Home of Missouri, is a certified haunted castle that exudes a rich history. Originally built in 1913 by the fraternal organization known as the Knights of Pythias as an orphanage, and later owned by the U.S. Military for more than five decades, Pythian Castle is now privately owned, listed on the National Register of Historic Places and open to the public by appointment. Located on the north side of Springfield, the 100-year-old landmark is rich with history and visitors can enjoy history tours during the day and ghost tours in the evenings, along with murder mystery dinners and other special holiday events.
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Constructed by the fraternal organization known as the Knights of Pythias, as a retirement home and orphanage for members of the order, Pythian Castle served as a meeting hall for the order until 1942. During the Second World War, the United States Military took over the facility to use as an entertainment and rehabilitation center for injured U.S. troops. Used in conjunction with the O’Reilly General Hospital next door, the facility featured a ballroom, a pool hall and bowling alley, a movie theater, a fully stocked library, and an arts and crafts area. The ballroom was famous for hosting big bands who played for the troops. The United States Military kept the building after the war as a reserve center until it was sold in 1993. Today, the building has been restored to its former glory and is available for special celebrations and public events such as history tours, ghost tours, murder mystery dinners, and holiday functions.
Designed to reflect a castle that echoed the theme of the Knights of Pythias, Pythian Castle was constructed from Carthage stone quarried in the Ozarks. The main floor of the building features a grand foyer and ballroom, a dining hall, a meeting room and comfortable sitting parlors. The second floor features dormitory style rooms for children and bedrooms for adults, as well as a theater with an original ticket booth, an upper projection and lighting room, and backstage changing rooms.
Pythian Castle is located at 1451 E Pythian Street in Springfield and is open to the public by appointment only. The Castle has been hired for private events and functions, ranging from history and ghost tours to murder mystery dinners, as well as celebrations, public affairs, and holiday functions.
Other Local Attractions
Located in southeast Springfield, the Springfield Conservation Nature Center is a 79-acre natural landscape made up of woodlands, forests, glades, prairies and Lake Springfield that offers visitors an array of recreational and outdoor activities to enjoy. The Nature Center boasts over three miles of hiking trails of varying distances which can be used for hiking, mountain biking, horseback riding, and wildlife watching. Self-guided displays and exhibits are scattered throughout the park for educational and reference purposes, and guided tours are available free of charge for groups, but need to be booked in advance. Special events are held in the park throughout the year, including Eagle Days during winter, Native Plant Sales, and Seminars during spring, Insect-O-Rama during August, and a Halloween-based event in October.
Explore the spectacular beauty of the Fantastic Caverns, a vast underground network of caves carved out by an ancient river in the Branson - Springfield area of Southwest Missouri. Discovered by John Knox and his hunting dog in 1862, the caverns quickly became a favorite destination to explore, and today, visitors can enjoy a 55-minute guided ride-through tour in a Jeep-drawn tram. Soak up the magnitude of the splendor and tranquility of the caves on a quiet, controlled drive through the caves, where the temperature hovers around 60 degrees. Trolley-led tours are held every day throughout the year.
Discovery Center of Springfield is a hands-on, interactive museum that inspires learning through exploration and discovery. The Discovery Center presents a variety of fascinating exhibits, programs, and displays that offer fun and inspiring educational resource that develops critical thinking skills for all ages. Covering subject matter from science and technology to art, history, and culture, visitors to the DCS can explore the inner workings of an eyeball, dig for dinosaur bones, learn about other cultures of the world, ride the HighWire bike and take home a sample of your DNA. DCS also offers a range of offers educational outreach programs and hosts events such as Earth Day, Pi Day, Nano Day, and scout nights.
1451 E Pythian St, Springfield, MO 65802, Phone: 417-865-1464