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Life in Southwest Missouri

Throughout CMH's eight-county service area, you will experience the beauty, serenity and warmth of the Missouri Ozarks. CMH communities have a small-town charm with nearby big-city destinations.

Citizens Memorial Hospital and many of its clinics and services are in Bolivar, Missouri, with a population of 11,000. The Hospital District and the Citizens Memorial Health Care Foundation also provide medical services in smaller towns in the region.

Small-Town Charm

No matter where you live within CMH's service area, you will enjoy the small-town charm of the Missouri Ozarks.
woman holding shopping bags

Shop and Dine Locally

Bolivar and nearby communities have a variety of locally owned businesses, as well as national retailers. Locally owned restaurants create one-of-a-kind dining experiences. Springfield is nearby, with many additional dining options.

Dining options in Bolivar include traditional American, Mexican, Chinese, Italian, barbecue, pizza, coffee, boba tea, snow cones and acai bowls. Retail shops range from small clothing boutiques to national retailers.

The Bolivar Area Chamber of Commerce has more information about businesses and events in the Bolivar area. Check with the local Chamber of Commerce for more information about businesses in other CMH communities.

Celebration of Freedom community event

Connect with the Community

You will find many opportunities to connect with your new community: Local schools, churches, chambers of commerce and other organizations.

Many of our communities host annual events, including holiday festivals, craft festivals, Independence Day fireworks, parades and Christmas open houses.

Southwest Missouri Destinations

Sometimes you need to get away to bigger destinations within easy driving distance of CMH communities.
sunset behind tall buildings

Springfield, Missouri

With a population of more than 167,000, Springfield is a 30-minute drive or less from Bolivar and many other CMH communities. It is the third-largest city in Missouri behind St. Louis and Kansas City. Springfield highlights include:

  • Hammons Field baseball stadium, home to the Springfield Cardinals, a AA minor league affiliate of the St. Louis Cardinals
  • The world-famous Bass Pro Shops Outdoor World
  • Wonders of Wildlife National Museum and Aquarium
  • Missouri Sports Hall of Fame
  • Dickerson Park Zoo
  • Live concerts and performances at venues such as:
    • Gillioz Theatre
    • Alamo Drafthouse Cinema
    • Great Southern Bank Arena at Missouri State University
    • Juanita K. Hammons Hall for the Performing Arts
    • Landers Theatre 
  • Cave tours
  • Wilson's Creek National Battlefield, the site of a major Civil War battle
  • Lots of shopping

aerial view of entertainment venues

Branson, Missouri

Known as the Entertainment Capital of the World, Branson is home to world-class music shows and other family-friendly entertainment. And it is just a little more than an hour's drive from Bolivar. Branson highlights include:

  • Dozens of live shows
  • Silver Dollar City theme park, White Water water park and the Showboat Branson Belle
  • Shopping, from outlet malls to craft shops to upscale stores
  • Outdoor entertainment such as mini-golf, go-karts, a Ferris wheel and more
  • Family-friendly indoor adventures, such as Fritz's Adventures (ropes course, multi-story slides and more), interactive museums, escape rooms and arcades
  • Ziplining
  • Golf courses
  • Resorts
  • Cave tours
  • Mountain coasters

Big-City Destinations

Big-city destinations of Kansas City and St. Louis are just a few hours away.
big-city skyline with snow

Kansas City, Missouri

Known as the Barbecue Capital of the World, barbecue is Kansas City's signature cuisine, with more than 100 barbecue restaurants. Kansas City is about a two-hour drive from Bolivar and is Missouri's largest city. It has all the entertainment, arts and culture, athletics, recreation and attractions you expect from a city with 500,000 residents. Kansas City is home to the Royals of Major League Baseball and the Chiefs of the National Football League.

pond reflection of the Gateway Arch

St. Louis, Missouri

The Gateway Arch proudly proclaims St. Louis as the Gateway to the West. St. Louis is about a 3 1/2-hour drive from Bolivar. St. Louis is Missouri's second-largest city and offers dining, nightlife, entertainment, sports venues, museums, cultural events and family attractions. St. Louis is home to the Cardinals of Major League Baseball and the Blues of the National Hockey League.


Bolivar and the surrounding area offer outstanding recreation opportunities. We have everything from lakes to golf and shopping to walking trails.
sailboat on the water


Stockton Lake is 30 minutes west of Bolivar in Cedar County. The state park offers fishing, sailing, swimming, water skiing, hiking, camping, picnicking and more. The Missouri Department of Natural Resources manages Stockton State Park. The park encompasses 2,175 acres of land, a 24,900-acre lake and 300 miles of shoreline.

Pomme De Terre Lake is 30 minutes north of Bolivar in Hickory County and features fishing, boating, swimming, camping and more. With 734 acres of land, 240 campsites and a 7,800-acre lake, Missouri DNR also manages Pomme de Terre State Park.

Other area lakes include Table Rock Lake near Branson to the south and Truman Lake near Warsaw to the north.

two people running in a forest

Fitness and Outdoor Recreation

The City of Bolivar Parks and Recreation operates the Bolivar Recreation and Aquatic Center. Exercise equipment and fitness classes are available with a paid membership. The Recreation Center also offers softball, baseball, soccer, basketball, football and volleyball opportunities for all ages. The Aquatic Center features an Olympic-size pool, recreation pool with a lazy river, whirlpool, splash pad and water slide.

Residents ages 55 and older can sign up for a free membership to the CMH Senior Health Center. The Center has exercise equipment, group fitness classes and an exercise pool.

Additional recreation opportunities in Bolivar include:

  • Two golf courses
  • Six public parks
  • A walking trail at Bolivar's Dunnegan Memorial Park
  • A walking trail at the CMH Senior Health Center

The Frisco-Highline Trail is a 35-mile scenic trail for walking, running and biking that connects Bolivar to Springfield. The trail follows the path of the former Frisco-Highline railroad and is part of the Ozark Greenways trail system.

art gallery

Cultural Events

Bolivar is a cultural center for music, theater, dance and art.

Southwest Baptist University produces a variety of music concerts, theatrical productions and art shows during the school year. Students in area schools also present a variety of fine arts performances throughout the year.

The Dunnegan Gallery of Art has a professional art collection and hosts special exhibits. The Polk County North Ward Museum features many relics of Polk County history.

The Polk County Artist Association operates the Art Sync Gallery on the Bolivar square, with local artwork available for purchase.

Educational Opportunities

Education is a priority in Bolivar and the surrounding counties with both public and private schools.

The Bolivar R-1 School District has four attendance centers (K-2, 3-5, 6-8 and 9-12) and serves more than 2,600 students. Students can enroll in various co-curricular and extra-curricular programs that compete in the Ozark Conference. Many programs receive state and national recognition. Communities throughout the service area have school districts that are the heartbeat of their communities. You can learn more about Bolivar and other area schools by visiting the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education.

Various public and private vocational schools, colleges and universities will meet your family's higher education needs.

Life at CMH

Our Organization

Citizens Memorial Hospital is an award-winning 86-bed acute care hospital serving an eight-county area in southwest Missouri.

  • Level III Trauma Center
  • Level II STEMI Center
  • Level III Stroke Center
  • 34 physician offices, including 12 certified Rural Health Clinics
  • Senior living facilities: Independent living, residential living and long-term care
  • Home care services
  • Retail pharmacies

Learn More About CMH

Employee Benefits

A robust benefits package from CMH enhances your health, career, life and future.

  • Zero-premium health insurance option for employees
  • Employee wellness program
  • Retirement plan with employer matching
  • Profit-sharing plan
  • Life insurance
  • Professional development opportunities
  • And more

Learn More About Benefits at CMH

Life in Southwest Missouri

There's always something to do in the Ozarks of southwest Missouri. From lakes to golf and shopping to tennis, we've got it all.

The communities we serve embody small-town charm where you easily can become an active part of your local community.

Larger cities such as Springfield, Branson and Kansas City are conveniently located nearby.

Explore Life in Southwest Missouri
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