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Archive for "Things to Do"

Kansas State Capitol Tour

Posted on October 14, 2018 by under Things to Do.    

I had the opportunity to tour the Kansas State Capitol building in Topeka with my coworkers a couple of weeks ago. Here are some of my favorite pictures.

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We started with the dome tour. This is us looking at all the steps ahead of us.

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We climbed the 296 steps to the top of the dome!

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We made it to the top!

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We ran into State Senator Oletha Faust-Goudeau while we were waiting for the second part of our tour to begin.

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Here we are admiring all of the art on the walls.

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It was interesting hearing the stories of how the paintings came about. The murals depict scenes in history and yet there’s also so much history in their making.

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Here, Chuck and Mark marvel at a mural.

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Here’s the Kansas Supreme Court.

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They did an amazing job of remodeling the State Capitol and restoring the building to its old glory. All the details are simply impeccable.

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This mural by the courtroom entrance commemorates the Brown v. Board of Education case. It’s one of several massive works of art throughout the Capitol.

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This next chamber is the Representative Hall.

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All the desks are set up for electronic voting.

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This next one is the Senate Chamber.

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Then we got to tour the beautiful library.

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We also got to see the governor’s ceremonial office with a stuffed buffalo head above the fireplace. This is the office where the governor holds public signings like proclamations. The real/working office isn’t part of the tour.

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View of the rotunda from the hallway.

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View of the dome from inside.

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Here’s another view of the dome.

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Picture of the amazing details you’ll see throughout the building.

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The Kansas Historical Society’s Darren Wade gave us a fabulous tour.

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After our tour our team went to HHB for more team building. Selena organized a fantastic afternoon for our team. As team building events go, she really knocked this one out of the park.

I couldn’t wait to tell Brian all about it. He was so jealous that now he wants to go to Topeka and take the tour also. LOL. Anyway, that’s all for now. GNG.

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Fun Times with My Rotary Club

Posted on October 11, 2018 by under Community, Events, Things to Do.    

We spent the last couple of weekends hanging out with the Andover Rotary Club.

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Last weekend was Greater Andover Days, an event that our club supports. We’re usually out there for the tailgate party on Friday night and to sell beer on Saturday night. The setup was a little different this year because we got to use the lodge patio. It’s beautiful and spacious, with great views of the amphitheater. It would have been perfect if we had a better turnout. Apparently, there were several things going on that same night. There was the 150th celebration in Augusta, Lynyrd Skynyrd at Intrust Bank Arena, Wichita Taste downtown, and a bunch of other events scattered around town and nearby. It was a beautiful night and the weather was perfect but we didn’t have quite the turnout we expected.

Do not believe it when someone tells you there is nothing to do in Wichita. There are always multiple options on any given night. Sometimes choosing which event to attend can even be overwhelming.

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The weather wasn’t the best this past Saturday for our annual Haus of Brews event but that didn’t seem to negatively impact the turnout. Brian and I got there early to help set up. This year we had additional help from the lovely people at Meritrust, long time sponsors of the event.

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Here’s a picture of Alison and her husband Chris setting up the German food buffet.

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We relocated the check in desk this year and I kind of like it. I think it confused the regulars who have been coming year after year but I thought it made for better flow.

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The wine station ended up being moved to the old check in spot.

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River City Brewery was one of six local breweries to support our event.

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We also had Areo Plains, Nortons, Third Place Brewing, Walnut River, and Wichita Brewing Company. Everyone brought plenty of great beer and smiles.

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Here’s another picture of the brewery guys getting set up. Treescapes in Andover is a lovely place to have Haus of Brews. We are always grateful to them for letting us use their space for our event.

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Here’s a picture of the food menu along with a bit of information about our club.

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The breweries brought several beer selections along with their most popular brews. We also had a good wine selection for the ladies and non-beer drinkers and, as always, there was a margarita machine inside churning all-you-can-drink frozen margaritas. There’s something for everyone!

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Our friends Jay, Becca, Cory, and April attended for the first time.

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I also had some friends from work come out to support the event. It was fabulous! Overall, I thought it was a great way to celebrate the 10th anniversary of Haus of Brews. I look forward to our next one.

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Open Streets ICT

Posted on October 8, 2018 by under Events, Food and Drink, Things to Do.    

Just a few pictures from Open Streets ICT a few weeks ago… But first, what is it exactly? Open Streets ICT is a FREE community-building event that closes a Douglas Avenue to traffic and opens it for biking, walking, running, dancing, yoga, and more! Everyone is welcome to join in the fun, and to stop at the local businesses, restaurants, and street vendors along the four-mile stretch.

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We started our day with breakfast at our usual place, Dempsey’s Biscuit Co, which also happens to be along the route.

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Here are some pictures of our delicious breakfast.

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We decided meet up for breakfast later than usual. Normally we go when Dempsey’s Biscuit Co first opens at nine o’clock but decided to go later that day so we could move right into Open Streets ICT mode. We didn’t think of the street being blocked because the official street closing was advertised from noon to five o’clock in the afternoon. However, they started closing the streets earlier that day and our cars almost got trapped in the Dempsey’s Biscuit Co parking lot (except for Jeff who planned ahead and arrived on his bike). Good thing Brian knew his way around the neighborhood.

After breakfast Brian and I took off and parked our car in my work parking lot. My office building is a long the route and right in the thick of the action.

We also purposely planned it this way because there’s a Bike Share ICT station right outside my office and our plan was to use my promo code for 2 hours of FREE bike rental. You can cover more ground and you get to see so much more by biking rather than being on foot.

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We ran into one of Brian’s Edward Jones coworkers, Brandi. She had a tent along the path, right by the Alzheimer’s Association office.

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There was FREE outdoor yoga on Douglas and Pattie.

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There were lots of people walking and biking and there were vendors everywhere.

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They even had sections of street blocked off for games such as pickle ball.

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We would have taken more pictures but it was difficult to do so while riding the bikes. We only took photos at stops along the way. And, we didn’t really have enough time to see everything because we had to set aside enough time to get out of downtown so I could make it back to Andover for my two o’clock Zumba class.

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There were four main hubs with lots of activities besides what’s pictured above. The City of Wichita even had a dunk tank featuring Mayor Jeff Longwell. There was also plenty to do in between hubs.

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Though we missed the event last year because we just couldn’t squeeze it into our busy schedule, we heard it was a huge success so we did our best to squeeze it in this year. Next year I may have to sub out my Zumba class because I didn’t feel like we had enough time to take it all in.

Anyway, Open Streets ICT is one of those events/initiatives that we hope the city continues year after year because it’s a huge hit and people love it.

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Cheap Date Idea — Mural Scavenger Hunt

Posted on October 1, 2018 by under Date Ideas, Things to Do.    

I wanted to share something fun that Brian and I did recently. It’s absolutely perfect if you’re looking for a cheap date idea. If you’re unfamiliar with Wichita, we have this three-mile stretch on Douglas Avenue called Douglas Design District. It starts at the heart of downtown and ends just beyond Oliver. The stretch is peppered with local businesses — over 300 of them.

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Something else that the District is peppered with are these amazing works of art. Everywhere you look you’ll find beautiful murals all over the place. Some of them are massive and breathtaking.

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So Brian and I decided to go on a mural scavenger hunt last weekend. Our adventure also coincided with the District’s annual Avenue Art Days event, a tradition that started three years ago and has grown bigger and better each passing year. This year’s dates were September 21-23, culminating in a mural crawl from 12 to 5 pm on September 23 — the same day and time as Open Streets ICT. I’m not sure if they planned it that way but it was absolutely perfect.

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Since I teach a Zumba class every Sunday at 2 pm, we figured we wouldn’t have much time to participate in Open Streets ICT festivities but I really wanted to check out these beautiful works of art. Brian and I decided to venture out on Saturday afternoon, the day before Open Streets ICT. It worked out fabulously because, not only did we get to see some amazing murals, we also caught some artists in the act. They were busy finishing thirteen new murals for Avenue Art Days 2018.

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Here are a few more pictures of artists at work.

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This mural is one that we see all the time because it’s outside our favorite breakfast/brunch spot, Dempsey’s Biscuit Co.

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This one called “Wichita The Air Capital” isn’t massive but is one of my favorites from last year. You can find it at Clifton Square, where several other Avenue Art Days installations are located.

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This is the one at Dempsey’s Burger Pub at Clifton Square, also from Fall 2017.

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Anyway, now that we are several days removed from Avenue Art Days 2018, I can’t wait to head back out to check the finished product of the ones that were in progress last weekend.

Thank you to all of the artists and volunteers who have been working hard to beautify our city since the inception of Avenue Art Days in 2015.

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Master Certificate in Project Management

Posted on September 27, 2018 by under Leadership, Things to Do.    

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Well, it took more than a year but I am finally done. I received my Master Certificate in Project Management earlier this month from Wichita State University‘s Center for Management Development.

But, as a lifelong learner, I’m never truly done. While I’m finished with this program, there is still so much more to learn.

For now, I need to decide whether to apply for a Project Management Professional (PMP) certification. I suppose that would be a reasonable next step. I’m not in a hurry to do it because it’s not required for my current role but I’m thinking this might be something I want to complete in 2019 should my schedule allow it.

I’m still undecided. What do you guys think?

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