I launched this website in April of 2021.
Since then we have posted 67 new stories and completed the entire list of 120+ city parks and 14 of 16 of the new aquatic parks. I’m not going to lie, while it’s been a lot of work, it’s also been a labor of love. More than 11,000 visitors have read our stories creating almost 27,000 views.
Jeremy and I have seen some cool things, changing our perspective on our city. We have also met some great people along the way. I am thankful to them for sharing their time and their stories.
These are the top ten stories of 2021.
Starting with number ten….
The Search for the Trading Post Marker This was one I was very proud of. I discovered it on the list of city owned art. The city did not know exactly where it was located. Thanks to the Facebook page of “Wichita history from my perspective.” The property owner reached out me. I was able to visit the site, meet a really cool couple and was able to connect the city people with the owner.
#9 The Bridge on the River Arkansas The Bridge On The River Arkansas This was one of the first stories I wanted to do for the website. I started discovering other stories that distracted me from visiting the bridge. I met the artist who turned out to be a great wealth of information and a fantastic storyteller. And most importantly I wanted to showcase this prime piece of south Wichita art.
#8 The Return of the Usher This was the follow up to The Usher and the Gentleman. We could not work it out for a tour of the theater for the original story. The great people at the Orpheum invited us out to see the theater and gave Dad and I a private tour. It was fascinating and I heard a few new stories I had not heard before. It felt like a nice wrap to the Usher’s story.
#7 Boy with the Boot I won’t deny it, I was not too excited about the statue. It came up in my research on Riverside Park. Once I learned of the origins and the story of how he ended up in a city park, I had to investigate.
#6 A Wichita Benchmark I was always curious about the benches that sat outside Century II. There was no plaque or explanation. The good people at the city arts council were able to give me the name of the woman who donated the benches… Helen Galloway. What a great personality and a true supporter of Wichita.
#5 One for the Road I had never heard about Woody Hockaday until I stumbled upon an area dedicated to him in a downtown parking garage. His name might have disappeared from history, but his accomplishments in making travel easier will always point the way.
#4 The Valentine’s Diner I discovered that these diners built in Wichita hold a lot of nostalgia for people across the country. The story gave a history on the company and I included pictures of most of the original Valentine Diners still standing in Wichita.
#3What Happened to the Kansas Coliseum’s “Two Steers?” They were the gatekeepers for the Coliseum, but when it closed, they were herded out. I knew one bull was in the Delano District and I found the other one at an area high school. The story also gave me an opportunity to showcase artist John Kearney.
#2 An Usher and A Gentleman: An Orpheum Love Story This was hands down my favorite story to tell. It was a love letter to my parents and how the Orpheum theater created a backdrop for a classic love story.
#1 Fast Times at Planeview High This was a fun one to investigate. I read an article that mentioned a high school in Planeview. I had to find out more. The school is long gone, but I found remnants of the home of the Gremlins.
We’ve got some great stories ahead, so keep following us. Thank you for your support
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