Kansas a draw for some folk

Kansas is a much bigger draw than most people might think. In fact, what I am about to share with you might impress you.
When our grandsons started coming to see us every summer?which has been an annual event since they were about 6 and 8 years old?they used to say they loved coming to Kan?sas because ?there was nothing to do in Atlanta.? I don?t think they would say that anymore, now that Alex has his driver?s license and Louis is pretty free to roam in the neighborhood these days.
But, this year one of their friends is coming to Kansas, too, to see what they have been talking about for all of these years.
We?ve got some pretty big plans up our sleeves for this year, in addition to the always popular Marion County Fair.
We bought them the ?8 Wonders of Kansas? guidebook published by Marci Penner of the Kansas Sam?pler Foundation a few years back and have been scratching off places to see and places to eat for several years now.
Alex had his learner?s permit last year, so was driving us all over the place. I assume it will be more of the same this time.

It took us nine years to make it to the Symphony in the Flint Hills, but we finally made it there this past weekend.
And we picked the windiest day ever for the event. When walking into the wind, it felt like I was walking backward.

The Rosalia Ranch, where it was held, was absolutely gorgeous with its miles and miles of open range and many hues of green as the land telescoped into the distance.
The wind with gusts reported up to 40 mph made it feel cooler than it really was. And we found the food tent to sit under, with its skirt. The wind wasn?t so fierce and we were actually quite comfortable.
We wondered if we would see anyone we knew among the 7,000 folks who had gathered there?and we actually did see a few.

We took one of the covered wagon rides. I knew it had to be authentic when the wagon driver?are they called drivers??was talking on his cell phone.

One of the most majestic things to see was the hundreds of cattle that were herded by the outriders on their horses across the ridge behind the stage while the orchestra played. Truly a sight to see.


We all had programs for the concert. I got lost the second song into the even?ing, as I think they switched the fourth song for the second and I never again did find my place. I did recognize the tune Charlie Daniel made famous, ?Orange Blossom Special.?

The sea of parked cars made it interesting to find ours, but we finally did. I used the panic button to find it.

If you wish to share your comments or ideas, my e-mail address is joel@