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Sat Feb 18, 2012, 02:09 AM

state by state speak your mind about...kansas

i have not been here yet
dead center mass geographicly
always makes me think of little house on the prairie but that was in minnesota
a lot of western era history and civil war history
an awful lot of (r)'s running the place
someday i will have the opportunity to explore kansas

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Reply state by state speak your mind about...kansas (Original post)
SwampG8r Feb 2012 OP
Broken_Hero Feb 2012 #1
jberryhill Feb 2012 #2
limpyhobbler Feb 2012 #3
TlalocW Feb 2012 #4
cherokeeprogressive Feb 2012 #5
DURHAM D Feb 2012 #6
Arctic Dave Feb 2012 #18
COLGATE4 Feb 2012 #7
The Genealogist Feb 2012 #27
MadHound Feb 2012 #8
flying rabbit Feb 2012 #9
WCIL Feb 2012 #10
proud2BlibKansan Feb 2012 #11
SwampG8r Feb 2012 #12
pamela Feb 2012 #14
proud2BlibKansan Feb 2012 #17
Arctic Dave Feb 2012 #19
The Genealogist Feb 2012 #25
proud2BlibKansan Feb 2012 #26
Little Star Feb 2012 #29
RZM Feb 2012 #13
hfojvt Feb 2012 #15
proud2BlibKansan Feb 2012 #16
11 Bravo Feb 2012 #20
Arugula Latte Feb 2012 #21
Noodleboy13 Feb 2012 #22
Denver Donkeys Feb 2012 #23
The Genealogist Feb 2012 #24
raccoon Feb 2012 #28
proud2BlibKansan Feb 2012 #31
Little Star Feb 2012 #30
TwilightGardener Feb 2012 #32

Response to SwampG8r (Original post)

Sat Feb 18, 2012, 02:17 AM

1. I enjoyed the state

although I spent most of my time in Lawrence(went to college there). I got introduced to college hoops during my time there, got to see KU play an exhibition game against the McDonalds Allstars in fall of 95, got to see Pollard, Lafrentz, Vaughn, and Pierce(badass!) dominate. I have a lot of good memories in that state....

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Response to SwampG8r (Original post)

Sat Feb 18, 2012, 02:19 AM

2. Almost rectangular

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Response to SwampG8r (Original post)

Sat Feb 18, 2012, 02:23 AM

3. I have only driven through but I found the scenery beautiful.

I recall it as flat and green and mostly empty. I took back roads.



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Response to SwampG8r (Original post)

Sat Feb 18, 2012, 02:42 AM

4. My home state

Grew up in a small farming community of under 2000 people close to Wichita. House was on the edge of town. The back yard butted up against wheat fields. When there was no crop growing, I would fly kites in the field. Hot air balloons would land in the fields as well. Parents were a little older than my classmates. Vacations normally meant some sort of camping/fishing - especially since some family friends owned some land around the river. I preferred swimming to fishing. We lived half a block from the town swimming pool.

I like visiting the town when I know an old friend is going to be there, but I'm glad to be gone. So many of my fellow graduates - the popular ones who go thrown into the mix where they couldn't cope with not being BMOCs/BWOCs - returned to that town to marry each other and raise kids that they hope to vicariously re-live their salad days through. College (also in state) was a welcome change of life. After that I went to Oklahoma for over a decade but have returned to live in Kansas City and am looking forward to exploring this part of the state.

TlalocW

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Response to SwampG8r (Original post)

Sat Feb 18, 2012, 02:46 AM

5. Awesomely pretty although flat; awesomer thunderstorms. n/t

 

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Response to SwampG8r (Original post)

Sat Feb 18, 2012, 10:25 AM

6. My home state.

I am from the middle of the country and the town I grew up in is in the middle of the state so if you look at a map of the US and put your finger down on what looks like the center of the country you will cover up my home county. The western 2/3s of the state is mostly flat. The eastern 1/3 has trees and hills.

Every little town has a grain elevator to hold the wheat after harvest. At night if we went about a mile north of my little town (pop. 250) we could see the lights of eleven other little towns around us. In other words, you can really see a great distance because there are no trees or hills to block the view.

My great grandmother was the first woman to serve on the Board of a Coop. My family has been in Kansas for 140 years. Like most from my part of the state I am German. The town I grew up in had one church - Methodist. The thing about Methodists - they are all about living by the Golden Rule. The other thing they are about - it takes a village. It takes a village to raise the children and get in the crops.

Members of my family are still in that part of the world and the thing that blows me away is the amount of volunteerism. They never sit still. They are always busy raising money for the women's shelter, reading to 2nd graders (the men), putting up and taking down flags on flag day, cooking for an event (like graduation party for children in foster care), just figuring out a way to help someone they know who is having a hard time (like a single mother, or providing a ride to the doctor, or staying with a new widow), attending a community concert fundraiser, or going to funerals. Funerals are important because everyone knows everyone else. In fact, your kids are friends with their kids, and your parents were friends with their parents and your grandparents were friends with their grandparents, and great grand parents, and so on.

Kansans in small towns don't look the other way - they step in to help in whatever way they can and they are creative.

But they are all Republicans. To them there are good Republicans and bad Republicans and it would never occur to them to vote for a Democrat. However, many voted for Obama because they consider him a Kansan. Now I am just talking about my part of the state and my family. The rest of the state - not so much. And all of those Republicans are moderate to liberal in their views. They just don't understand how they fit into the national political set and they do keep voting against their own self interest.

Things I miss - open spaces, open skys, the world's best lightning show, rolling thunder clouds, sharing the road with tractors and Amish buggies (over in the next county), jack rabbits running the road in front of your headlights, great desserts, unsweet iced tea on the table at every meal (including the winter), windmills and oilwells, wheat swaying in the fields for as far as you can see, the colors of the sunset.

The thing I don't miss the WIND; the unrelenting wind.

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Response to DURHAM D (Reply #6)

Sun Feb 19, 2012, 06:10 AM

18. K&R. Thanks. nt

 

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Response to SwampG8r (Original post)

Sat Feb 18, 2012, 10:40 AM

7. Pigs, Protestantism, Prejudice

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Response to COLGATE4 (Reply #7)

Sun Feb 19, 2012, 09:55 PM

27. Not quite

there are a lot of pig farms! Prejudice is all over. And there are a lot of Catholics in Kansas.

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Response to SwampG8r (Original post)

Sat Feb 18, 2012, 10:44 AM

8. Being a Missourian, I am, by birth, brought up to hate Kansas.

 

But in reality, Kansas is a beautiful state. Flat, but still beautiful, sometimes in a stark and mournful way. I still remember looking out over the western horizon in Hayes and seeing, far off in the distance, the Rocky Mountains.

The MU-KU rivalry is fun, intense but fun. Lawrence would be a lovely town if they only got rid of KU and the Jayhawks
A shame that Bill Self and Kansas are so uptight about not wanting it to continue, it is historic.

I've known some wonderful people from Kansas.

The only real drawback is that over the past thirty years, Kansas has become extremely conservative, almost reactionary. Frankly, Kansas has gotten so conservative that they are making Missouri look positively liberal by comparison. Sadly, some of that reactionary conservatism is spilling over into Missouri now.

Hopefully both Kansas and Missouri regains their political sanity soon.

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Response to MadHound (Reply #8)

Sat Feb 18, 2012, 10:23 PM

9. Loved Lawrence,

Wyandotte BBQ, Had alot of good times there. Thunderstorms are epic. Lots of good memories but I don't want to go back. No oceans or mountains. Too many republicans.

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Response to SwampG8r (Original post)

Sat Feb 18, 2012, 11:28 PM

10. As a child my family drove through on 70 every year to visit

my grandparents in California. I found it so dull - it seemed like nothing but wheat. We started leaving home at midnight to get through most of it while it was dark.

My adult daughter lives in Lawrence. She loves it there, and I really enjoy visiting. I wish our town had something like the Merc, and I love the downtown area.

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Response to SwampG8r (Original post)

Sun Feb 19, 2012, 12:51 AM

11. My home.

I've lived in Missouri too but have always preferred Kansas. There's an easier, calmer life style in Kansas. And until Brownback became governor, Kansas took better care of its people.

My dad grew up in western KS, 18 miles from the Colorado border. When I was a kid my grandmother lived in the town down the road from that town and we drove out there every summer to visit family. My dad used to tell us the wheat we saw growing in the fields we passed by was really money because there was so much oil and natural gas under that wheat.

Right down the road from my grandmother's town was a sunflower farm that to this day is one of the most beautiful things I have ever seen.




When I was in college, I got to know the Flint Hills. They run down the middle of the state and are absolutely gorgeous. We used to camp in the Flint Hills and other than a few cows, we were completely isolated. As you drive through on I-70, you can see portions of the Flint Hills around Junction City and Fort Riley.




Lucas is a great side trip off of I-70. The Garden of Eden is a house surrounded by concrete sculptures that tell the history of the world. S. P. Dinsmoor, the artist and long time resident of the home, was quite a character and an early populist.



http://www.garden-of-eden-lucas-kansas.com/


Another worthwhile side trip is Monument Rocks.




For you political junkies, Kansas was home to the country's first progressive newspaper. Although it's been a Republican state for many years, the Republicans here weren't crazy until Operation Rescue came here from California in 1991 to spend a summer protesting outside Dr. George Tiller's clinic in Wichita. Many of the OR folks stayed, gradually became dominant in the state Republican party and have created the obnoxious political climate we have in Kansas today. There are still some moderate Republicans in Kansas, and they hate the far right as badly as we Democrats do. It's also quite entertaining to watch the two factions in the state GOP fight, but I'd rather see the moderate Republicans leave the party and become Democrats.

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Response to proud2BlibKansan (Reply #11)

Sun Feb 19, 2012, 01:07 AM

12. wow thanks for giving these

great stuff

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Response to proud2BlibKansan (Reply #11)

Sun Feb 19, 2012, 03:07 AM

14. You have TWO of my bucket list items there.

I want to go to Lucas to see the Garden of Eden and I want to drive through Kansas when the sunflowers are in season. I also want to go to Holcomb and see the In Cold Blood house. I've driven through there but we didn't have time to look for it plus I'm not sure I would have the nerve to drive up to it anyway. Not because it's scary but just because it's such a morbid, tacky and intrusive thing to do.

I think Kansas is a very pretty state. I didn't like it the first time we drove through it on 70 but last time we took a different route through, following the Santa Fe trail, and I really liked it.

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Response to pamela (Reply #14)

Sun Feb 19, 2012, 04:41 AM

17. Holcomb is really way out in the middle of nowhere

I think the house is still on the market. http://xfinity.comcast.net/slideshow/news-hauntedhomes/7/

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Response to proud2BlibKansan (Reply #11)

Sun Feb 19, 2012, 06:12 AM

19. Than you for your post.

 

makes me want to visit. You are great ambassador for your State.

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Response to proud2BlibKansan (Reply #11)

Sun Feb 19, 2012, 09:49 PM

25. Thanks for posting the photos

So much beauty to be seen there! The photo of the Flint Hills is just charming.

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Response to The Genealogist (Reply #25)

Sun Feb 19, 2012, 09:53 PM

26. You're welcome.

I love the Flint Hills.

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Response to proud2BlibKansan (Reply #11)

Wed Feb 22, 2012, 10:42 AM

29. Those pictures made me want to go!!!! They are beautiful, thanks.

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Response to SwampG8r (Original post)

Sun Feb 19, 2012, 01:14 AM

13. My father is from Western Kansas

 

I visited his hometown on a road trip about 8 years ago. Lemme tell you, I was surprised by this . . .

Being from Ohio, no point in Ohio is more than a couple hours from a decent-sized metropolitan area. But his hometown? Not so much. It's many hundreds of miles from any decent-sized city. Thus even though it's really small, it has hotels and such, because it's the last stop for quite a long way. I imagine it was even more isolated in the 40s-50s when he was growing up.

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Response to SwampG8r (Original post)

Sun Feb 19, 2012, 04:20 AM

15. actually, "Silver Lake" is in DeSmet, SD

or it was. The location of "By the Shores of Silver Lake" is no longer a lake.

Also http://www.kansastravel.org/littlehouseontheprairie.htm

Minnesota is not all that and a bag of lakes.

About Kansas, I have lived here for ten years and four months. Previously I had live in Wisconsin for ten years, Iowa for three years, Minnesota for five years of college, Nebraska for two years of college, Utah for a year and twenty some years in South Dakota.

Kansas is not flat in the Eastern part. It is hilly and wooded, much like Wisconsin. Because of Kansas City, it seems far more urban than SD or Iowa or even Wisconsin. I find the weather here to be awesome, with long, dry summers and mostly mild winters with little snow for very long.

Politically, of course, it is a disaster, known and berated for being deep, deep crimson. However, for 8 of the ten years I have been here, we had Governors who are Democrats, and my state legislators and state senators have been Democrats and my Congresswoman for two years. In Wisconsin, it seemed like Tommy Thompson was Governor the whole time I was there, and I had two Republican Congresspeople - Gunderson and Klug as well as Republican legislator and State Senator.

In Kansas, it seems like most of the elected Democrats are DINOs, practically moderate Republicans, but I feel the same way about Senator Herb Kohl of Wisconsin, one of the richest men in the Senate and about William and Hillary Clinton, so Kansas's political problems are hardly unique to Kansas. I have Brownback for Governor, but in Wisconsin I'd have Walker and in Iowa, the herpes virus of Branstad. Again, Kansas is not alone in having awful Governors.

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Response to hfojvt (Reply #15)

Sun Feb 19, 2012, 04:38 AM

16. I've been to the Little House in Independence

It has a concrete floor. Who knew Pa poured concrete? LOL

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Response to SwampG8r (Original post)

Sun Feb 19, 2012, 08:39 PM

20. The skiing sucks!

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Response to SwampG8r (Original post)

Sun Feb 19, 2012, 08:48 PM

21. I have one strong memory.

 

We were driving across the country, and we stopped somewhere in Western Kansas. I stood in the middle of a field to really try to "feel" the great plains. The flatness of the land gave me the opposite sensation of I was expecting -- I actually started to feel a bit claustrophobic. I figured out it was because there was nothing looming on the horizon, like a small hill, to give you a sense of something in the distance, and so it didn't seem like I could see very far, and I felt closed in. Very weird!

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Response to SwampG8r (Original post)

Sun Feb 19, 2012, 09:19 PM

22. I'm from MN, and I've always been fond of "Dust in the Wind"

Been to the state a handful of times, seemed like the dakotas, only greener.
Those vast prairie-scapes were pretty cool.

peace,
Noodleboy

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Response to SwampG8r (Original post)

Sun Feb 19, 2012, 09:36 PM

23. I'm going to be visiting Topeka next month

 

and was wondering if there was anything cool for a 3 year old to do in the morning...

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Response to SwampG8r (Original post)

Sun Feb 19, 2012, 09:46 PM

24. My father was born in Topeka, Kansas

As were his parents and three of his grandparents. My stepmother grew up in Kansas, one of my stepbrothers was born in Kansas. I've had family in Kansas since the 1850s. I've spent quite a bit of time in Kansas (I was most recently there last month), since I am not far from it, and I have been across it from east to west (and west to east!). It is pretty flat, but much waving wheat. Kansas is thought of as rural, but Wichita is a pretty good sized city. University of Kansas is a major institution, and a lot of medical research comes out of it. Lawrence is a great college town, and I have heard that Manhattan isn't too bad, either.

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Response to SwampG8r (Original post)

Sun Feb 19, 2012, 09:58 PM

28. Kansas is flat--what's not to like about flat? It would work for me if everywhere was flat.

I am planning to make a trip to Kansas, mainly western Kansas; Dodge City, Garden City, and
the Clutter house in Holcomb. Yeah, I know it's a private residence and you can only see it from a distance.

That case and that book have fascinated me since the late 1960's when I first read the book.

When I saw the movie I was struck by the fact that the only trees were around the houses. In the Southeast trees are
everywhere.

Kansas has some neat state symbols; the sunflower (I love them) and the meadowlark.

Maybe "Dust in the Wind" should be the state song? LOL.

Oh, and it's much easier to bicycle where it's flat. I bet cars get better mileage on flat land too.


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Response to raccoon (Reply #28)

Wed Feb 22, 2012, 08:40 PM

31. The state song is

Home on the Range.

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Response to SwampG8r (Original post)

Wed Feb 22, 2012, 01:21 PM

30. There’s a lot more to Kansas than I ever imagined!

Kansas looks like an interesting and beautiful state with lots to see and do.
The Official Kansas Tourism Website: http://www.travelks.com/s/index.cfm

I like scenic drives and Kansas has eleven byways, eight scenic, two of which are National Scenic Byways and three historic byways. That’s temptation enough to make me interested.

After poking around their website, I think this statement from the site says it all.

There’s something about Kansas that’s hard to explain, something you need to experience to understand. Kansas has been called a fabled place, a land whose people and history have made it the nation’s mythical Heartland and the metaphor for the authentic American experience.

Part of the Kansas story is told by the land itself. Scarred by ancient oceans, Kansas is a rugged blend of fossil-laden plains, green prairies and the world-famous Flint Hills. Kansas is home to the largest remaining stand of tallgrass prairie in North America, offering visitors a glimpse of what the continent looked like 200 years ago. Adding to the state’s lore, Kansas is still a natural habitat for the American bison, which can be spotted along our scenic highways and byways.

Kansas’ history is also the history of colliding cultures and the development of America. The state boasts legendary Wild West towns that staged the era’s most exciting jailbreaks, shootouts and cattle drives. Visitors can also visit the state’s myriad of museums and explore Kansas’ pioneer, Native American and Civil War legacies.

There are few places like Kansas. With a unique combination of heritage, untainted beauty and opportunity for adventure, Kansas has something for everyone.


Pretty cool that the tourism website has a recipe page too: http://www.travelks.com/s/index.cfm?aid=12

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Response to SwampG8r (Original post)

Wed Feb 22, 2012, 09:54 PM

32. Camped there (Kanopolis State Park) for a weekend a few years back--

very nice. I feel bad for anyone who can't appreciate the beauty of the Great Plains.

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