Kansas is celebrating its 150th birthday on Saturday, October 8th. Wichita will host a Kansas Sunflower Parade; a fair with historic reenactors, and Kansas attractions and vendors of food, arts and cultural products. The events will conclude with a “Home on the Range” concert that tells the history of Kansas in song, poetry and video.
People from across the state are welcome to join in the celebration. Towns, cities, high schools, universities, civic organizations, companies and reenactors are invited to put floats and marching units in the Kansas Sunflower Parade to show off their unique part of Kansas’ history and heritage. Marching bands from across Kansas – from high schools, colleges, universities and the military -- are invited to help make the parade a rousing, rollicking good time. Kansas vendors and reenactors are encouraged to show off their wares at the fair.
The parade begins on October 8th at 11 a.m., followed by the fair at noon and the “Home on the Range” concert at 2:30 p.m. Governor Brownback and Wichita Mayor Carl Brewer will lead the festivities and more than 60 musical performers will be featured at the concert being staged by the Kansas Chapter of the Western Music Association.
The Kansas Sunflower Parade will march through downtown Wichita and flow into the fair at Kennedy Plaza at Century II Performing Arts Center, where the “Home on the Range” concert will be held in Convention Hall.
Participation in the parade is free, but registration is required. Tickets for the “Home on the Range” concert are $5. There is a $25 registration set-up fee for booths at the fair, but that price includes two tickets to the concert. Tickets can be purchased at Century II Performing Arts and Convention Center, located at 225 W. Douglas in Wichita. You can order tickets by phone at (316) 219-4849 or by e-mail at WichitaTIX.com.
Wichita Mayor Brewer, president of the League of Kansas Municipalities, is serving as chair of the Kansas 150 Festival and is organizing the celebration with Gov. Brownback, Overland Park Mayor Carl Gerlach, immediate past president of the League, and Dodge City Councilman Jim Sherer, the League’s president-elect, along with other business and civic leaders from across Kansas.