Virgin Airlines Owner Pulls Prank on Branson, Missouri

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BRANSON, MO. (KOLR) — Billionaire Sir Richard Branson is pulling an early April Fool’s Day prank on the town of Branson, Missouri.

Earlier this month, Branson posted on his blog that he was eying opportunities in Branson, after learning the town is named for one of his relatives.

Tuesday, he followed up with a blog post and series of tweets,suggesting he plans to move his entire U.S. operations to the small town in Taney County.

The post blew up on social media, prompting many posters to express excitement about the “news.”  But others were quickly skeptical.

But a credible source in Branson city government tells KOLR10 News the news is a prank.  CNNMoney also says sources in Branson’s London office confirm it is a prank.

Branson Mayor Raeanne Presley was apparently pulled in to the prank, appearing in a video on Branson’s YouTube account.   Presley did not return phone calls Tuesday morning.

Here’s a link to Branson’s blog, which claims he is planning to start up a Virgin Air flight from Branson to San Francisco, open a hotel, and introduce “a new Branson-themed workout that will have gym-goers tossing hay bales and rolling wagon wheels across the gym.”

Further down in the blog, Branson talks about taking over the town’s water supply to triple-filter it so he can get a good cup of tea.

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