Kansas is 150 years old, but there hasn’t been much celebration.
Wichita rescued the situation a bit with a one-day party including the Kansas Sunflower Parade.
When the state recognized its century as a territory in 1954, everybody went all out, according to what we’ve heard.
Mom made a colored slide show of those happenings, and we have fond memories of repeatedly seeing them years later.
Our adrenaline was flowing for the entire year of the Kansas Centennial. As did several in the community, we touted a (play) revolver on our hip much of the time and anticipated all of the goings-on.
Hanging Pete Lang “again,” as they’d done seven years earlier, was one of the memorable portrayals, although quite morbid really, now looking back.
The centennial parade was the biggest deal with covered wagons pulled by horses and oxen crossing the state to be a part of all celebrations.
Just about every horse owner saddled up for the occasion, and that made us sad. We wanted to ride a horse, too, but it was still a year before we got our first horse, Spot.
Marching as a member of the grade school band in the parade was no consolation, whatsoever.
When talk of the sesquicentennial celebration began, we anticipated involvement. But, there wasn’t much planned, until finally the Wichita parade came about.
With a sigh of relief, we vouched our participation. We couldn’t ride a horse in the centennial, so we definitely weren’t going to miss the sesquicentennial.
It was great fun driving our bay mare, Laura Mae, while riding in our historic fringed-topped surrey with Bill, a former Globetrotters player, coming along reminiscing all of his good old days.
Certainly wasn’t anything like the parades of 50 years ago, and it lasted less than an hour with some of the 125 pre-registered entries not showing up.
Probably weren’t even 25 horses total, even though the Longhorns leading the affair were an attraction.
Sure glad we got to participate. Now, we’re making plans to ride in the 200thcelebration. Even though some contend we won’t be around, it’s on our agenda.
Reminds us of Colossians 4:5: “Make the most of every opportunity.” So, we can be like Job 42:17: “Then he died, an old man who had lived a long, full life.”