Welcome to Finley Farms
I had only recently discovered Finley Farms, thanks to an e-newsletter sent by Missouri Life Magazine in September. Described as a nature-filled dining destination in the Missouri Ozarks, what drew my attention was the Finley Farms farm-forward ideology incorporated into its venues. After reading more about the farm and its history, I knew I needed to plan a visit. With our three-year wedding anniversary approaching, a quick visit to the Ozarks sounded like the perfect getaway.
For this trip, we enjoyed a lovely overnight stay in Springfield, Missouri, giving us the late afternoon and evening to explore the farm.
Traveler Tip: Purchase a photography permit, or leave your camera behind.
Finley Farms enforces a strict photography policy. Anyone using a camera beyond a smartphone will be approached and asked to provide proof of permit or put their device away. I was documenting my visit with my compact and unobtrusive Fujifilm X-T4 and 33mm lens and was promptly asked to refrain from using it. This post contains a mixture of images taken on my Fujifilm and my Samsung S22 smartphone.
Finley Farms Dining Experiences
There are two dining establishments available at Finley Farms: The Ozark Mill and The Garrison. Both are located in the same building, with the more casual Ozark Mill occupying the top floor and its finer dining offering, The Garrison, filling the lower level space. We opted to enjoy an early dinner at Ozark Mill followed by drinks and dessert at The Garrison later that evening. We enjoyed our experiences at both venues and would look forward to a return visit.
The Finley River
Finley Farms is nestled around a section of the Finley River. Visitors are welcome to explore the farm grounds to view the river and several other buildings on the property. Be sure to visit the Riverside Pedestrian Bridge for a great view of the river and the Ozark Mill. Illuminated by string lights, Riverside Bridge offers a romantic evening stroll - a perfect place to enjoy the setting sun.
About the Mill
Originally built in the early 1800s, the Ozark Mill was the last commercially operating mill in Missouri before its retirement in the early 1990s. Located at the convergence of two rivers, the mill served as a critical delivery route for the region for over a century. The Ozark Mill has an extensive history that has weathered the toils of the Civil War, multiple fires, and flooding from the Finley River.
Soon after the mill was officially retired in 1992, it was purchased by renowned conservationist and owner of Bass Pro Shops, Johnny Morris. Over the following years, the mill was extensively restored and renovated to serve a rustic riverfront dining establishment. Learn more about the history of Ozark Mill here.
Explore Finley Farms
The farm is an urban produce and floral farming collective. We spent several hours roaming the farm grounds to view its beautiful flower gardens, growing produce, and even a bee farm! Learn more about the farm here.
Finley Farms is a beautiful establishment offering visitors plenty of natural and culinary enjoyment. From its multiple venues, sprawling flower farms, on-site dining establishments, and lovely views along the Finley River, the farm is a fantastic Ozarks destination worth traveling to. The next time we travel to southern Missouri, I am sure we will make it a point to revisit this remarkable gem of a place.