Soak up the last of summer with curated outdoor dining experiences and new looks (and menus!) from a few local favorites. 

Seasons – Prairie Pie, 307 S Jefferson Ave. Springfield –

For a little something sweet, Prairie Pie is hosting a collaboration dinner experience called Seasons. This outdoor dinner “softens the divide between summer and fall” by combining food, floral, and beverage. Sit beneath a hanging floral installation in the historic Prairie Pie alleyway while you take in a five-course meal prepared by private chef Anna Saunders. Individual seasonal floral installations by Locust Floral punctuate each table at this intimate event, which includes a plated dessert by Prairie Pie baker and owner Eleanor Taylor, live music, cocktail hour by Wildcrafted Cocktail, and wine pairings. Seasons takes place Sunday, September 5 at 6:30 p.m. Tickets are required.

Dinner in the Orchard – Harvest, 8011 Highway AD, Rogersville  –  

Soak in the ambiance of a late summer evening with Harvest’s Dinner in the Orchard September dinner series. Every Thursday this month, the farm-to-table restaurant hosts an outdoor dining experience in its apple orchard. Chef Craig von Foerster composes a seasonal menu each week focused on welcoming fall in the Ozarks. Each four-course prix fixe menu includes appetizers and wine pairings highlighting different wine regions, techniques and winemakers. Dinners are every Thursday night from 6:30 to 9 p.m. Advance reservations required. 

The Coffee Ethic – 124 Park Central Square, Springfield – 

Downtown darling The Coffee Ethic is ready to show off its newly renovated interiors — and the coffee shop is celebrating with a revamped menu. After an equipment fire in November, owner Michelle Billionis took the opportunity to renovate the eatery from top to bottom, pivoting to to-go only orders in the meantime. The newly reopened dining room now boasts an airy and pastel color palette with bright lighting and an architectural coffee bar. Chef Anna Saunders worked with Michelle on the creative and adaptable food menu, which seamlessly accommodates vegan and gluten-free diets. Highlights include a vast selection of flavor-packed oats, like tahini-chocolate overnight oats and an oatmeal and hazelnut butter dish. In the coming months, Michelle and Saunders plan to roll out additional dishes like a layered pesto and egg toast. In the meantime, sip your way through a seasonal coffee menu which includes beet shrubs, lemon-y tonics, and a dairy-free coffee float made with oat milk ice cream from fellow downtown business Sweet Emotion. 

Worman House Bistro — 190 Top of the Rock Road, Ridgedale –

Dining options just got a lot more luxurious at Big Cedar lodge, the wilderness retreat located off of Table Rock Lake. This summer, the property’s historic Worman House Bistro reopened its doors after renovations. The structure was built as a country retreat for Harry Worman, an executive with the Frisco Railroad. Restored to its original 1920s luster, the revamped bistro grants sweeping views of the lake and Big Cedar’s sprawling property from its window-lined dining room. The menu pays homage to French cuisine with upscale options like tuna tartare, lobster Thermidor, and seared duck liver. The Worman House Bistro is open for dinner Tuesday through Saturday, and reservations are recommended. 

SingleTrack Mind Festival – Two Rivers Bike Park, 5055 Two Rivers Road, Highlandville – “SingleTrack Mind Festival 2021” on Facebook

Pack some adrenaline into your Labor Day weekend at the SingleTrack Mind Festival, an annual mountain biking tournament at Two Rivers Bike Park. Hosted by TrailSpring, a Springfield-based nonprofit geared towards creating and funding trail building opportunities in the Ozarks, SingleTrack Mind features competitive mountain biking events in cross country, endurance, criterium, slopestyle and trail run styles. This year’s ’90s-themed event has races for all ages and experience levels, so there’s a little something for everyone. The weekend event also features non-biking events like movie night, live concerts, food trucks and free camping.

Photo // Jared Willard