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Old 06-07-2016, 04:26 PM
 
294 posts, read 278,573 times
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I've traveled through Kansas plenty of times, but I've never really spent time enjoying the state. Soon I'll be leaving Illinois and traveling through Missouri and then Kansas and I'd like to stop in some interesting places.

The challenge is that I am traveling with a small dog, so I won't be able to partake of any non-dog friendly activities. I'm also not a big hiker and wouldn't want to do anything but a light hike. But being able to see interesting historic towns would be enjoyable for me.

I'm thinking about avoiding interstates as much as I can my whole trip back to Arizona since I've primarily driven through Kansas and other states via interstate.

I've tried doing research on my own, but it is hard to weed through marketing to really determine the most interesting places. Usually it takes living in a state and exploring it to really discover that.

Any Suggestions?
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Old 06-07-2016, 06:52 PM
 
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What time of year are you traveling ? When will you turn south to AZ, Wichita or Denver or Dodge City?
Sunflowers are in bloom in Kansas in August. Lawrence has a farm that allows tourist. It will take for ever to get through Kansas if you don't take some interstate. Old 24 is a scenic route. Maybe 24 from Lawrence to Colby and start going south there or stay west to Colorado Springs.
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Old 06-07-2016, 09:02 PM
 
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Jamesport, MO
Weston, MO
Atchison, KS
Lawrence
Manhattan
Abilene
Hutchinson
Dodge City
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Old 06-08-2016, 08:28 AM
 
Location: Overland Park, Kansas
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If Dodge City is a must don't expect much unless you stop at Fort Dodge. Dodge City demolished most of their historic buildings in two waves to build a fake front street for a museum and later again in the 70's for "urban renewal."
Fort Larned is also really cool as it and Fort Dodge are fairly intact.
Fort Scott
Lawrence
SE Kansas (old mining area and Route 66)
Atchison
Hutchinson is old, but a lot of the older buildings downtown are in pretty rough shape (as are other parts of town.)
Wichita has the awesome Old Cowtown Museum that consists of legitimate frontier town buildings!

Other older towns that don't have a lot to offer for history buffs compared to the towns listed above include; Junction City, Leavenworth, Manhattan (a large chunk of downtown had been demolished for a mall in the 80's), Emporia, Garden City, Hays, and Salina. The first territorial capital is in the Junction City-Manhattan Area, Hays has a fort that is mostly reconstructed buildings (I know locals who've never even attempted to go) and Garden City had a town founder who played a major part in saving the buffalo. Most of his herd went to Yellowstone and the other chunk still maintains a presence in Finney County.
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Old 06-08-2016, 10:35 AM
 
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Lawrence to Alma to Council Grove to Cottonwood Falls to Winfield to Medicine Lodge to Meade to Elkhart.
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Old 06-08-2016, 03:56 PM
 
Location: Overland Park, Kansas
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I forgot Cottonwood Falls! It is a must and Abeline is pretty cool as well.
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Old 06-08-2016, 04:37 PM
 
Location: Alamogordo, NM
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empires228 and anyone else - what does Fort Scott have to offer someone as far as cool, old historical buildings and history? I am looking at a job at the hospital there now as I type. Don't know, but, I've done some digging and, apart from some silly nigging and nagging from some people on city-data regarding some "good 'ole boy" type issues with City Hall, and some petty complaints about taxes, most of the reviews on living in the town are fairly fair and positive.


As is true with many places, places are what you make out of them. I don't expect a lot out of places I move to. Dodge City has been all right but not some place I would feel like retiring in. My job may be in jeopardy here in Dodge City, hence the beginning of serious job searching now. Any help regarding Fort Scott would be most appreciated.
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Old 06-08-2016, 05:19 PM
 
Location: Overland Park, Kansas
742 posts, read 958,833 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by elkotronics View Post
empires228 and anyone else - what does Fort Scott have to offer someone as far as cool, old historical buildings and history? I am looking at a job at the hospital there now as I type. Don't know, but, I've done some digging and, apart from some silly nigging and nagging from some people on city-data regarding some "good 'ole boy" type issues with City Hall, and some petty complaints about taxes, most of the reviews on living in the town are fairly fair and positive.


As is true with many places, places are what you make out of them. I don't expect a lot out of places I move to. Dodge City has been all right but not some place I would feel like retiring in. My job may be in jeopardy here in Dodge City, hence the beginning of serious job searching now. Any help regarding Fort Scott would be most appreciated.
Fort Scott has an older and aging population and some of the best buildings in town were lost to a fire a few years back, but they have a few things there like the old Fort, a Walmart, a Community College, a Goody's Department Store (which is just Stage under a different name like how they're Beall's in New Mexico and Oklahoma) and they still have some neat older buildings. Southeast Kansas has been on the decline for many decades with Pittsburg being the only "strong" holdout, but Fort Scott, Pittsburg, Parsons, and Coffeyville have all lost many large employers over the last decade. People usually think of SWKS as the armpit of the state, but I think that's because they already have SEKS down for the count. I mean there was a whole area along the KS-OK border that the US Government had to evacuate a few years ago because the lead mine waste was causing prevalent health problems. Some of the towns down there and in OK and MO have also had parts of town fall into old mines, so that's always exciting . Pittsburg is propped up by the college. The last time I was there the articles were all about missing people turning up dead in water filled mine sinkholes and strategies on how to keep the local residents from shopping in Joplin, MO and KC over Pittsburg.
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Old 06-08-2016, 05:34 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by elkotronics View Post
empires228 and anyone else - what does Fort Scott have to offer someone as far as cool, old historical buildings and history? I am looking at a job at the hospital there now as I type. Don't know, but, I've done some digging and, apart from some silly nigging and nagging from some people on city-data regarding some "good 'ole boy" type issues with City Hall, and some petty complaints about taxes, most of the reviews on living in the town are fairly fair and positive.


As is true with many places, places are what you make out of them. I don't expect a lot out of places I move to. Dodge City has been all right but not some place I would feel like retiring in. My job may be in jeopardy here in Dodge City, hence the beginning of serious job searching now. Any help regarding Fort Scott would be most appreciated.
They have the Historic Fort and the Gordon Park center which brings in world class performers. Brandford Marsales just played there. They are trying to keep downtown going and their arts council is still alive. One of the biggest pluses is the state has worked on the highway and now Fort Scott is only about an hour from overland park. Joplin Missouri used to be the big pull for that area and now its southern JOCO. I think I would choose Ft. Scott over Dodge just for the location. You will be on 54 highway so you will be the same distance from Wichita as you are now.
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Old 06-08-2016, 07:09 PM
 
294 posts, read 278,573 times
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Thanks for all the suggestions. I'm leaving in the next few days and I forgot to mention that I need to head to the Denver Colorado area before I go home so I won't just be heading south through Kansas, but up into Colorado.
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