The annual Dodge City Days boasts over 50 events during the first week in August. There's a rodeo, musical concerts, a huge craft show, Western parade, professional barbeque contest and lots of family activities.
Visit the original model of Dorothy's house used in the 1939 filming of The Wizard of Oz and let one of the guides dressed as Dorothy lead you on a tour down the Yellow Brick Road. The Seward County Museum displays items used in the settlement of the Kansas territory during its Wild West days.
The home belonged to their sister in Meade and it had a tunnel running from the house to the barn. This was their hiding place when the things got a little hot.
The barn holds a small museum of Dalton Gang history. In Coffeyville you can browse the Dalton Gang Museum. Visit "Death Alley" where the robbers were killed and laid out on the sidewalk.
It is 100,000 acres and has a 19-mile trail for hiking, biking, and horseback riding.
You can drive it using the Sea of Grass Auto Tour with stops at 17 points of interest. You can camp year round and there's fishing in the Cimarron River.
Only about 50 miles away from Wichita is the Kansas Cosmosphere and Space Center that features the Hall of Space Museum with the actual Apollo 13 command module, the IMAX Theater, the Justice Planetarium and a live science show at Dr. Goddard's Lab.
Gypsum Hills is former Comanche tribe country and along the 42-mile route is the Medicine Lodge Stockade built in 1874 and site of the 1867 peace treaty with the Five Tribes of the Plains. Stops along the route will reveal numerous spots to engage in various vacation activities like boating, fishing, trail riding, nature walks, hiking and even caving.
The Flint Hills Scenic Byway is a 48-mile long trip that takes you through the great Kansas grasslands. This is the only untouched tallgrass prairie in the United States and one of four left in the world. This area is part of the Tallgrass Prairie National Preserve and the beauty of the prairie is enhanced by the colorful and rare wildflowers growing here like the purple Polly mallow or the butterfly milkweed. A great way to really enjoy this national treasure is a walk on the Southwind Nature Trail.
The pace is leisurely, the conversation entertaining. Country bed and breakfast accommodations a few miles away allow for drives on country roads. Observe natural rotation of crops, planting and harvest, wheat and sunflowers, the wild life that draws hunters, and the stunning night skies and sunsets.
The Riverside Park and Zoo, located on 124 acres, comes complete with facilities, as well as a miniature train that open for rides around the par, miniature golf, and a real carousel that costs just a nickel. Visit monkey Island in the Ralph Mitchell Zoo; home of “Abel”- the first monkey in space by NASA.
Another favorite is Little House on the Prairie, located about 13 miles South of Independence. It’s the original site she speaks and wrote about in her books. Complete with a log cabin, Sunnyside School, and Wayside Post Office. Admission is based solely off donations, and a visit of this attraction will leave you feeling like you walked straight out of the 1869.
Let's not also forget about the wonderful Historic Homes Tour.
Featuring 27 of most magnificent homes built between the late 1800’s and early 1900’s. This tour can be walked or driven with ease. Brochures can be picked up at the Chamber of Commerce office. Not only does Independence, KS have great attractions; we are home of great events and festivals.
Neewollah is the biggest festival in the state. It's been around since 1919. Neewollah started out as an attempt to reduce all the mischief on Halloween night. During the week of Neewollah, Independence population jumps almost eight-fold to around 80,000 people.
The revelers come to participate and enjoy the carnival spectacle. They enjoy the many musical stage shows, queen competition and coronation, street performances, top entertainers from around the world.
And, one last great event is the William Inge Festival. Held annually in the Spring, the festival celebrates the life of William Inge, a famous playwright, and Independence native.
Packed full of theatrical performances, other famous playwrights and lively seminars and workshops, this festival brings thousands of visitors into Independence every spring. So, in a nutshell, Independence has a unique flair with its attractions, festivals and its quaint downtown shops and specialty stores. Kansas vacations visitors will relish in the lifestyle that Independence has to offer.
We can take you to watch gunfights in Old Abilene Town or a musical at the Great Plains Theatre. At the Eisenhower Center, you can relive the 1950s while the kids play interactive games on touchscreens, and at other museums the kids can talk on old telephones, we women can discuss vintage dresses, and our men can check out old photographic equipment or racing greyhounds. Let’s tour some Victorian mansions and art galleries before deciding whether to eat the best fried chicken in the state or a special seafood dish served in a historic home.