The best thing about building KansasTravel.org has been meeting people like Mary & Glenn Stark of Kingman, Kansas. Glenn makes sculptures in wood and concrete. I first saw his work on display at the Grassroots Art Center in Lucas, and had exchanged emails with his wife prior to my visit.
Glenn is 91. He still seems quite fit, though his hearing is poor, but that is from the guns of the USS Maryland in World War II. He was at Pearl Harbor. Mary is his second wife and much younger.
Much like the other Grassroots artists I have visited, the couples are even more interesting than the folk art. The Starks showed me around their small house. Each room was filled with his art, both miniatures and life size figures. Most of them funny and many have stories. Their yard has many life size figures including Calamity Jane on horseback, a dinosaur, bears, giraffes, a bull rider, and many others.
It is easy to pull off US-54 and drive by the Stark home. Several car loads of people came by while I was taking these photos. But for a real treat, call ahead and make an appointment for Mary and Glenn to show you around their home. Not only will you see the many smaller works that aren't displayed in the yard, but you will get to experience the Starks' humor and joy.
copyright 2006-2010 by Keith Stokes