The Great Seal of the State of Kansas

The Great Seal of the State of Kansas (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Kansas became the 34th state on January 29, 1861. There are people who think of Kansas as mostly flat land filled with farms, they we all witness tornadoes on an annual basis,  are friends with Dorothy Gale. Well those stereotypes are not true.

Some wonder if anything good comes out of Kansas.  My response it many good things have. Those in senior living facilities or seniors living at home can celebrate Kansas Day with a look at these good things.

Walter Chrysler (auto manufacturer) is from Ellis, Kansas. The Chrysler website a video about his life and iconic Chrysler cars. Sing your favorite car song such as “Route 66” or “Baby You Can Drive My Car”.

Amelia Earhart (aviator) was from Atchison, KS She was the first woman granted a pilot’s license by the National Aeronautics Associate. She also made history as the first woman to fly solo across the Atlantic Ocean. Check out the official website for fun photos and facts. Sing a song about flying such as “Come Josephine in My Flying Machine” or “Leaving On a Jet Plane”.

Dwight D. Eisenhower (general and President) lived for many years in Abilene, Kansas where his Presidential Library is now located. The library website shares many facts about Ike. Share the campaign song and see if anyone remembers hearing it.

Stan Kenton (jazz) was born in Wichita, Kansas. Though he lived there a short time, he often returned to Wichita to perform. See who remembers his music by sharing some hits such as “Artistry in Rhythm”, “Stompin’ At the Savoy” or “Laura” (to name just a few).

Pizza Hut restaurants opened its first store in Wichita, Kansas in 1958. Talk about first visits to a Pizza Hut and favorite types of pizza. Who remembers this theme song? 

Helium was discovered in 1905 at the University of Kansas. (Rock Chalk Jayhawk!) Discuss the shortage of helium and how it is used.  Consider reviewing the elements with this song by They Might Be Giants: 

William Purvis and Charles Wilson of Goodland, Kansas invented the helicopter in 1909. Why not share some fun facts.

About 40 miles south of Lebanon, Kansas at Mead’s Ranch is the Geodetic Center of North America. What that means is when a surveyor checks a property line, they are checking the position in relation to this place in northwest Kansas. Use an online mapping site to find out how far you are from this site. Sing a few choruses of “This Land is Your Land”.

Does anything good come out of Kansas? I think so! I leave you with a view of many smaller communities in Kansas with the music “My Hometown”. 

  • Singer Patti Page had deep roots in Kansas
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