- May 7, 2022: We are off to Baxter Springs, Kansas to be there for
the Cowtown Parade in Baxter Springs at 9:30 AM. We found a good spot for
our lawn chairs near the end of the route. It was a nice parade, though
there weren't very many people watching the parade along the stretch where
we were. The parade took about 12 minutes to pass.
headed back out of town on the way to Galena at the other end of Route
66, making an detour in an attempt to photograph the Brush Creek Bridge,
better known as the Rainbow Bridge. We had heard that the bridge was inaccessible
due to high water and wanted to get some photographs, but the creek was
so high that we couldn't get close enough to even see the bridge.
what the Spring River was like, when we got to Riverton, we turned south
to the Empire Dam Falls. There was so much water going over the dam that
it was almost invisible, with only a very short drop. The huge trees which
were trapped at the dam last year had all floated away.
had a brief stop at Cars on the Route. It was the first time is was open
when we were in town in several years. We had a nice chat with Melba Rigg
("Melba the Mouth") who was one of the four women who first restored the
old Kan-O-Te Station and whom I first met in 2007. Melba said that the
owner was having a hard time hiring people to get the attraction open.
went on to the Missouri line to photograph the new border installation
of a Yellow Brick State Line and Route 66 markers on the road which was
just installed in February. The bricks looked old already. The bricks on
the south side of the road were dark and faded, as if most of the traffic
crosses the line from Kansas and then turns off the road to take pictures
and returns to Kansas without driving on the westbound part.
back through Galena, we paid another visit to the 1939 Texaco Station at
Gearhead Curios. Aaron and Kelly Perry have been restoring it for several
years. Aaron has now retired and they live nearby in Columbus, Kansas.
We met Kelly last year, but this was the first time that we got to meet
Aaron. They still have much that they want to do, with one of the next
projects being functioning rest rooms.
had an early lunch at Sweet Creek Diner & Bakery in Galena. With over
half of their menu being breakfasts, I thought I should try one and got
the "Meat Lovin' Skillet (ham, bacon, and sausage over hash browns, topped
with 2 eggs and cheddar cheese and with the choice of a pancake, toast
or biscuit with gravy on the side). It was a lot of food for $8.99. It
was a good pancake and I enjoyed the eggs and meat, but can't say that
I was a fan of the hash browns. I think that I should have asked for some
only pie remaining was chocolate and the slice we shared was just as good
as we had last year. When we were leaving, we found out there were just
two slices remaining and we also got one to take to our friend WenDee Rowe.
who we would see later in the day.
returned to Baxter Springs, to photograph the historic Johnston Public
Library, but couldn't get very good photos because the various vendors
for Cowtown Days were on the library grounds.
went on to Columbus to visit Maple UnCommon Guest House & Gallery.
Laura Lowry-Greene showed us around her combination art gallery and B&B.
The rooms we looked at looked quite comfortable. There are seven guest
up was a stop at the Columbus Museum & Genealogy Library. It had been
12 years since my last visit to the library and its review will benefit
from the fresh photographs.
also made brief visits to the Columbus Made and Mercantile and the T.J.
Losey Memorial at City Cemetery.
4 PM we attended "The Stump" at City Park. It was the first time we have
seen Marci Penner and WenDee Rowe this year and it was fun getting quickly
caught up and passing along the piece of pie to Wendee. When it was time
to do the trivia contest. Marci instructed me to count to three before
answering (since I have won prizes before). Linda decided it was fair for
her to count to 1 and a half and answer. I only answered one of the questions.
Linda answered 4 and won a prize package of Baxter Springs related gifts.
head north, stopping briefly to photograph Soffietti-Boccia Grocery Store
in West Mineral and St. Bridget Church and Scammon. There were several
other people doing the BKRT at the church. The 1907 church has lovely stained
a taking a break and making a Facebook post from our motel, we met friends
from Lenexa for supper at Jim's Steakhouse in Pittsburg, which we had just
recently learned had reopened under new owners last year. The Steakhouse
had previously been in operation for over 80 years and was one which we
had reservations and were quickly seated. Our server was a bit slow realizing
we were there, but we had menus and were also enjoying getting caught up
with friends who were also doing the Big Kansas Road Trip. The menu looked
much like I remember from previous visits and I ordered a small order of
onion rings as an appetizer for the table. As in the past, the $5.95 order
of house made onion rings was good and more than enough for the four of
us. They were quite salty, possibly too salty for some people.
entrees ended coming out about and hour after we were first seated, but
we were enjoying the company and are more lenient to slow service in these
days of employee shortages. The food was very good, though also rather
salty. My $32 14 ounce ribeye was tender and had excellent flavor. It came
with great fresh cut fries and a $2 side of grilled onions. After the salad
and onion rings, half of the steak and fries made a good meal and I has
a second meal to take along for another day.
$32.99 8 ounce filet with baked was properly cooked well done as ordered,
something that can be difficult to get.
sat and talked after dinner. By that time they were not full and were patient
with our taking our tume.