Mission San Juan, December 30, 2017

Mission San Juan, December 30, 2017
Mission San Juan, December 30, 2017

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Topeka, Kansas: A City with Many Faces - Sat., Sept. 20

Not wanting to over-do our busy-ness, we didn't start our Capitol Volksmarch until 7 a.m. Topeka, Kansas is a place we have never been, so it became a city of discovery. We saw and learned a lot...

Unique flowers (to us):

Red Velvet Celosia

Red Velvet Celosia
The whole plant
What is this flower?
We saw the Post Office Building. Above the doors, you see art deco corn. We've noticed lots of places put corn decoration above their doors.

United States Post Office, Topeka, Kansas
Corn decor above door
St. Joseph Catholic Church
Carriage House built in 1882 for Sweet Mansion.
Mr. Sweet was an early railroad executive in Kansas.
Our first "attraction" on the walk was Ward-Meade Park & Old Prairie Town. It's a small free park with a botanic garden, historic church, old-time barber shop, print shop, tack building, Pauline Depot, Potwin Drug Store and a dental museum. We strolled through and looked at the buildings, but at 8 a.m. on a Saturday morning, not much was open.

Ward-Meade House
Pauline Depot

Bob in front of Potwin Drug Store
Interior of Potwin Drug Store
Sun's rays filtering through the trees
From Warde-Mead park we walked through a mixed variety of neighborhoods, but ended up amongst some beautiful homes on a street made of bricks! Even the sidewalks were brick. You could see they had been there a long time as many of the bricks were disintegrating.

Brick streets!

One of the historic treasures in Topeka is Topeka High School. See for yourselves...

Topeka  High School
Topeka High Trojans
Front entrance to school looks like a theater lobby.
Magnificent building
We passed Grace Cathedral on our way to the Capitol.
Next on our walk is the State Capitol. Because we went inside to look around, I am writing a separate blog just about Topeka's capital. From the capital, we walked around downtown and saw more fun things...

Someone knitted a sweater for this tree.

Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe Railway Building
Below is a mural painted by a 5th grade class at William Magnet school from 2008 depicting their vision of Topeka in the year 3200.

While we were downtown, we saw people in crazy outfits racing around all over. They were taking photos, consulting their smart phones, and having a great time. We asked one of the people manning a station what was going on. He told us it is the "Downtown Adventure Race Topeka" (DART). People work in teams of three to six people, receive clues, solve logic puzzles,  and overcome obstacles to receive prizes. It looked like a lot of fun. Below are members of one of the DART teams:

Nerds, Twizzler, SweetTarts, KitKat, Skittles and Reeses
Sunshine Susan popped in.
Another DART team
Below is the Columbian Building built in 1889 in the Romanesque-Prairie style. It has long been the offices for prominent professionals and political organizations. On a 1901 saloon-smashing visit to Topeka, Carrie Nation came here to meet an attorney, but instead fled out the back door to escape and angry mob. (Info from Capital City Walking Tour.)

Columbian Building
Another interesting tidbit from the Capital City Walking Tour relates to the Darling Building. In the early 1900s, dentists in offices upstairs advertised painless extractions with a cartoon drawing of a gap-toothed boy: 50 years later that drawing became the fictional mascot of Mad Magazine - Alfred E. Neuman. Who knew?

That ended our 10K Volksmarch. Next blog will be our tour of Topeka's Capitol and capital grounds.

Travel Bug out.

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