Written by guest blogger: Kaitlyn Black
While Kansas is well known for the Wizard of Oz, there are so many hidden gems among the state that you’re sure to miss if you don’t venture off I-70 on your way through. Just 45 minutes to the west of the gorgeous Flint Hills is the little town of Abilene, named “Best Small Town To Visit” by Smithsonian Magazine.
Hometown of Dwight D Eisenhower, 34th President of the United States, you can tour the Eisenhower museum and see his childhood home while learning all about the history of Ike.
The Heritage Center is home to the C.W. Parker Carousel built in 1901 that is still in operation today and the Museum of Independent Telephony explaining how the Sprint Company got its start in the little town of Abilene.
The Seelye Mansion is beautiful to tour, especially when it is all decked out in Christmas décor. Dr. A.B. Seelye made his fortune in patent medicine, which he in turn purchased the furnishings of the house at the 1904 St. Louis World’s Fair, including a bowling alley in the basement.
Take a tour around Old Abilene Town while you’re down there and check out all of the old buildings that have been moved in from around the county, learn about the history of them and take photos while you’re there.
You can pet live greyhounds at the Greyhound Hall of Fame and learn about the history of the breed, or venture downtown and visit one of the many antique shops that line the streets. While you’re downtown, stop in at Amanda’s Bakery for lunch, and be sure to get one of their amazing scones while you’re there, too.
Once you’ve visited the Jeffcoat Photography Studio Museum and viewed the history of Dickinson County the three generations of photographers have preserved, you can relax on the Abilene and Smoky Valley Railroad Association dinner train, which has catered meals by The Brookville Hotel on certain evenings. The Brookville Hotel is one of the 8 Wonders of Kansas and has been serving family style chicken dinners for over 100 years.
“Hi there! My name is Kaitlyn and I own Lazy KT Designs, LLC. Currently located in Solomon, KS, where I grew up.
With my business Lazy KT Designs, LLC, I turn your artwork and photos into unique gifts and keepsakes by printing them on interesting and unusual surfaces such as slates, cutting boards, cake pans, coasters and mugs, so that you can give or receive something to be treasured. More often than not, I can be found printing with my Australian Shepherds Annah and Cedar and German Shorthair Trigger close by.”