Precious Moment Park
This 2,000 acre park was the dream of one man and a vision from God. More than 30 years ago, Sam Butcher began creating precious moments, those innocent looking children with tear-drop shaped eyes.
"Until the figurines he had just drawn these tear-dropped eyed characters and his family and friends loved them. He always wanted to build something for the lord, and then he realized he had the financial freedom, so he prayed about a location, was one a business trip, stopped in Carthage, Missouri and bought the property," said Precious Moments Public Relation's Shelby Bates.
Included in the park is the Precious Moments chapel.
"The chapel was the very first thing, this is the heart of the complex. This is Mr. Butcher's gift to the lord and it will always be free," said Bates.
The chapel walls are lined with the images of children in biblical scenes. Including a child-like view of heaven. The collection of art from paintings to sculptures throughout the park and the serene setting itself inspires some, while others visit for the solitude and a time for reflection.
"It's just a peaceful place, a place of inspiration, I have seen it change lives, renew faith, there is just something here for everyone."
In a room behind the large mural of heaven is the real inspiration behind many of the precious moments characters.Most of them have passed on, but their real-life stories are told through pictures and short biographies in this special room.
"People come here to experience many different things. Some are grieving. Many people have left a funeral and they were in this area and they said you need to stop by the chapel."
Other attractions throughout the park include a wedding chapel, several visitors centers and Precious Moments stores. Still, the most popular attraction is the fountain of angels. The fountain of angels is a majestic show of water, lights, and sounds. At any given time there are 36,000 gallon os water in the air. It is a show that inspires many.
What began as a hobby of sharing drawings with friends and family has since turned into a million dollar industry that offers a spiritual expierence that some visitors say you can't put a pricetag on.
If there's some place you'd like josh to visit, you can e-mail Josh deBerge. We were curious to see what our own Josh deBerge would look like as a Precious Moments figurine. That's his picture next to his email address.