Uranus, a pit stop off Route 66, is famous for its fudge factory, but there’s more to see and do in this quirky destination about two hours south of Columbia.
For starters, there’s the bizarre Uranus Sideshow Museum, putt-putt golf and the Uranus Ice Cream Co.
Entrepreneur Louie Keen opened Uranus in 2015 with a fudge recipe and a goal to transform what was once an adult-entertainment business into a family-friendly roadside stop.
Keen said he decided to build the place he wanted to visit as a kid.
The fudge recipes and ingredients come from Calico Cottage, a business-solutions company based in New York, but Keen altered the confection to fit the offbeat character of Uranus.
There are 18 regular fudge flavors, such as Butterfinger, blueberry cheesecake and chocolate pecan, as well as six reduced-sugar flavors.
The Uranus Sideshow Museum features more than 100 exhibits, including an in-house sword swallower who performs every hour.
Uranus claims the world’s second-largest personal collection of oddities, some of them alive, including a couple of two-headed turtles.
The property is set up to resemble an old Western mining town with saloon-style buildings adjacent to Route 66. It offers many entertainment opportunities for children, as well as adults, with a playground and photo settings at the property.
“I love hearing all the families out here laughing and interacting with each other,” said Laura Abernathy Huffman, guest relations manager.
A second location recently opened in Anderson, Indiana, and the Route 66 location is planning to add a donut and coffee shop this summer, as well as a sluice for the Uranus Mining Shop.