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Manhatt p U e an k a , W

Vol. 7 | Spring 2014


Dear Readers, Volume 7 | issue 1

Managing Editor

Katy Ibsen

Designer/Art Director

Shelly Bryant

Copy Editor

Deron Lee

Sr. Advertising Account Executive

Ad Designer

Jenni Leiste

Chief Photographer

Jason Dailey

Joanne Morgan (785) 832-7264

Contributing Michael Henry Photographers Cathy Mores

Terry Szel

Contributing Writers

Davis Brants Robin Farrell Edmunds Megan Saunders Lou Ann Thomas Bethaney Wallace

Bert Hull

General Manager

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Last August, as I was slowly racing my way through Manhattan at the Brew 2 Shoe, I was so amazed at the variety of runners soaring by me! Young kids running with their parents, college students cheering their way through campus—and Marvin, a staple in the Manhattan running community. So of course, for this edition of Manhattan Magazine we dug in to find out the story behind our local runners— one more characteristic that makes this town a community. This season we also meet the folks behind the greenest lawns, perkiest shrubs and most beautiful settings around town: the landscapers. Manhattan is in no short supply of accomplished landscapers keeping the area pristine and beautiful. We take a look behind the scenes this season to learn more about what goes into the perfect lawn.

I was also amazed to learn about the overwhelming success of the Greater Manhattan Community Foundation. Since 1999, they have worked to raise funds and support around 50 charities in our community. Speaking of philanthropists, we find some unlikely ones donning stethoscopes. The Flint Hills Community Clinic has provided health care services to residents without insurance since 2005. We meet some of the docs who, whether actively practicing or retired, find reason to give back to those who are in need of care. We’re inspired this season, and appropriately so, as spring is a time to renew and rejuvenate. We’re certain you’ll enjoy these stories and much more in this issue. Thanks for reading. Katy Editor


spring 2014

42 Flint Hills Community Clinic

A group of physicians gives back to Manhattan

48 The Landscapers

Meet the creative minds behind Manhattan’s lush lawns

Story by Bethaney Wallace

“This was an opportunity to work with others in the community to bring services to some who would otherwise have a difficult time to receive these.” – James Dixon Gardner M.D.

find us on facebook Follow us on twitter @manhattanmag




spring 2014


10 The Wright Stuff A unique home with a Frank Lloyd Wright flair catches the eye of a local architect and finds new life

14 Downtown Dental A far cry from the traditional office


18 MHK Runners: Young and Old

From 11-year-old Mady to 83-year-old Marvin, Manhattan is setting the pace

22 Foster-Family Values Tim and Katie Wolf open their home and hearts to kids in need

26 Nonprofit Spotlight Greater Manhattan Community Foundation: Making a Difference Locally

28 Painter Kim Casebeer Get to know Manhattan’s artists experience

31 Flavor: Arrow Coffee Arrow Coffee stakes a claim in Manhattan’s coffee culture

32 An aerial appetite Flight enthusiast Ron Nordt offers

a one-stop-shop for lofty learning, speedy travel and a sky-high perspective


36 Steven Lambert

General manager, Colbert Hills

39 Lee Ann Smith Desper Executive director, United Way of Riley County


56 Day Trippin’: Wamego Follow Highway 24 for an Oz-some adventure in Wamego On the cover In every issue: manhattanmagazine

4 | Editor's Note 8

62 | Events

David Adkins of Arrow Coffee. Photograph by Cathy Mores

ke Wa

Vol. 7 | Spring 2014

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photography by Michael Henry


The Wright Stuff A unique home with a Frank Lloyd Wright flair catches the eye of a local architect and finds new life

Sunset Lane is more an alley than a street, but about halfway down the block on this narrow passageway sits a small, flatroofed home with windowed walls rising above the surrounding roof, and a carport. Along with its lush landscape, its resemblance to a Frank Lloyd Wright design is particularly eye-catching. This Manhattan home was built in 1950 and has been lovingly restored by Bruce McMillan, owner of Bruce McMillan Architects, who purchased the property in November 2012. “People kept telling me I needed to look at this property,” McMillan says. “I was not planning to move at the time, but took a look at it anyway. It was in a state that was going to require a fair amount of rehabilitation on it.” The abode is similar to Frank Lloyd Wright’s Usonian homes, which he began designing in the late 1930s. The famous architect’s idea for the small, single-story dwellings was to appeal to the ever-growing middle class of the time. Wright’s Usonian House series features a flat roof, small kitchen, large living area, and an open floor plan. The homes were designed without garages, but usually included a carport—a term popularized by Wright to describe an overhang under which to shelter a vehicle. As an admirer of Wright’s work, especially his Usonian designs, McMillan quickly saw the possibilities and purchased the home. McMillan began working with the help of Wayne Sloan and Pat Shutter of BHS Construction, even as he started to learn more about the house. It appeared likely that the house had been designed by a member of the architecture faculty at Kansas State University and built by students. The open and light-filled living room retains two walls of the mahogany paneling that McMillan says was originally everywhere in the house. The living room also features three series of eight-panel steel windows along the west side and double French doors on the south. The design includes concrete floors of Cherokee red, Wright’s favorite color, which had been originally substituted with red floor tile that was deteriorated by the time McMillan took ownership of the home. Maintaining the spirit of the original design, McMillan found a pomegranate-red vinyl tile that is similar in hue and installed it throughout the house.

This Manhattan home recalls Frank Lloyd Wright’s Usonian designs. In 2013, owner Bruce McMillan restored the home, believed to have been created by K-State architecture students. 11



“I am happy to have had the opportunity to take care of this place in the manner that it deserves,” – Bruce McMillan

A small galley kitchen opens off the living room, and McMillan has created a twoseat, cozy breakfast nook under the clerestory, a windowed portion of the house that rises above the roofline. The clerestory had been ceilinged off, possibly to retain heat or create storage, but is now open, allowing light to flood the kitchen and making it feel larger. Wright’s designs included an inglenook, or small sitting area, and McMillan’s home had two, both of which lead out to the back porch. One remains true to mid-century homes, with a ’60s-era striped burnt-orange couch and a sitting chair. McMillan has turned the other into an efficient office with guest bed across from a small bathroom. Five steps, typical of Wright’s split-level design, lead downstairs to an expanded master bedroom, with a circa-1958 bedroom set originally owned by McMillan’s parents. Removing a hallway and door to the bedroom created a larger, more open room with an exterior entrance leading onto the patio, which wraps around to the backyard. The backyard is a welcome mat of sorts, in a neighborhood where residents know each other. “The best thing about living in this house is the neighbors and neighborhood,” says McMillan. Turns out his neighbors are involved in architecture or building sciences, and seem to be pleased that someone saved this home from being dismantled or turned into a rental property. “I am happy to have had the opportunity to take care of this place in the manner that it deserves,” McMillan says. “I hope I have respected the original architect’s intent in the changes I made.”

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usonian design Frank Lloyd Wright developed his Usonian design model in 1936, during the Depression, as a stripped-down version of Prairie architecture. To Wright, these smaller, simplified houses represented the democratic ideals of the United States; the name is an abbreviation for the United States of North America. In Wright’s An Autobiography, he describes his vision for this type of dwelling: “A modest house, this Usonian

The petite two-bedroom, one-bathroom home features many echoes of Wright with its pomegranate-red tile floors, sitting nooks and a carport.

house, a dwelling place that has no feeling at all for the ‘grand’ except as the house extends itself in the flat parallel to the ground. It will be a companion to the horizon. … As a matter of course a home like this is an architect’s creation. It is not a builder’s nor an amateur’s effort. … This is true because a house of this type could not be well built and achieve its design except as an architect oversees the building.”




column by davis brants

photography by Cathy Mores

editor’s note

Davis on Design manhattanmagazine


This is the second installment of Davis Brants’ design column. Here we get a behind-the-scenes look at projects as well as learn tips on how to update our own style projects, homes and more.


Downtown Dental

A far cry from the traditional office

Downtown Dental, established in 1989, found its current home at Fifth and Houston Street in 2001. This 1940s Art Deco-style building served as an inspiration for the redesign and expansion of the growing dental practice. The goal of Dr. Daniel Winter, architect Tim Clark and myself was to create something new and different in the Manhattan area, while maintaining the building’s original Art Deco roots. The Art Deco influence is most apparent in the light fixtures of the space. Reproduction Art Deco fixtures were added and used throughout. The lobby features wood, rich color tones, historical lighting, and great onyx and walnut surfaces. The aviation wallpaper and American flag honor the Fort Riley military families that come through the office. A one-of-a-kind metal art piece that hangs in the center of the room, created by Built So-Well metalworks, mimics the building’s Art Deco design. The lack of fluorescent lighting and the use of unconventional home furnishings create a feeling of comfort in the lobby. In medical offices I visited as a child, I remember interactive toys that were always broken. Enter the Kids Corner from Sweden! This is an all-inclusive center that satisfies an antsy child’s need for interactive play. Manufactured in a tasteful, artistic way, the pieces are fun and colorful, yet permanent. The expansion of the facility created a courtyard between the existing building and the new one. The architect took advantage of that beautiful outdoor space with a wall of windows in the employee break room. A large glass door at the entrance of the space made the courtyard visible throughout the building. A feeling of space was created in the dental-hygiene rooms through use of a striped floor and more Art Deco lighting. Local artist Phyllis Pease’s recreations of 1950s toothpaste ads line the hallway and transport you to another time. Each workroom houses a TV as well as a landscape of the Konza Prairie, encouraging the mind to wander through what would otherwise be a typical teethcleaning or other unsettling dental work. The overall design concept produced a modern multifunctional space elevating the trip to the dentist. This is not your mother’s dentist office, so kick back and relax.

OPPOSITE Downtown Dental underwent a complete makeover, taking cues from its original Art Deco details. Interior designer Davis Brants wanted the entire office to exude a soothing and comforting feel. RIGHT Painter Phyllis Pease was commissioned to create vintage-style ads for the dental office.




Do-It-Yourself tips The Floors Flooring doesn’t have to be expensive. Just a creative touch or some planning can make ordinary vinyl composition tile, like we see in hospitals and offices, into something that has movement and style. Ordinary VCT comes in variegated colors and a 12-x12-inch size. We chose a similar product in 12-x-24-inch sizes with little variegation to the color. The overall stripe effect creates movement and illusion of space, adding to the aesthetic. You can create any geometric pattern you wish using VCT, even cutting right angles.

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Mixing Styles Don’t be afraid to mix door styles when appropriate. We utilized one style of door to make our waiting area more crisp and formal, and used another style throughout the building to bring in warmth and a modern feel. The doors were given their distinctive look by railroading the walnut so that the grain runs horizontal rather than vertical, highlighting the Art Deco theme.

Lighting Lighting is a key component in any room. Downtown Dental is a good example of light coming from many sources. We have pendants, chandeliers, backlit countertops and lamps, for a source of light from every angle to create warmth and highlight notable features.

Doors and Their Hardware Doors and door hardware should always be made from quality materials. As you move throughout a space, any object that you can touch, and feel its finish or its weight, is a great investment. This will translate into a space that feels authentic and well designed.

About Davis After 10 years in California, Davis felt the call of Manhattan and longed for a less stressful career that would allow for more free time and quality of life. With his move, he decided to pursue his passion for commercial and residential interior design. manhattanmagazine



story by Bethaney Wallace

photography by Cathy Mores

MHK Runners: Young and Old From 11-year-old Mady to 83-year-old Marvin, Manhattan is setting the pace Much like Olympic runner Steve Prefontaine, many Manhattanites are giving their all over the miles of Riley County. From those who are inspired by a first race to those who run every morning in their neighborhood, it turns out Manhattan is a foot-fueled town. New kid on the block When Mady McCollough’s mother, Monique, requested a unique birthday present—to run a 5K—Mady and the family manhattanmagazine


got to training. Running on weekends, evenings and whenever else they had time, the group quickly shaped up for their racing debut—but perhaps none as well as Mady, the 11-year-old with a natural talent. “If she wants, she can beat everyone,” says Mady’s father, Jason. “Obviously, she’s a better runner and faster than we are.” In fact, in that first 5K, Jason hurt his ankle; after a few slowed strides, Mady took off without him and the rest of their group, earning herself a top-four finish in the 11-19 age bracket.

“We joke and say dynamite can come in small packages—and that’s Mady. She’s small but she’s fast.” – Monique McCollough, Mady’s mother

identity in addition

Lace Up

ABOVE Mady McCollough and Marvin Hachmeister are two of Manhattan’s running marvels.

Now with two years of running under her belt, Mady continues to train with her dad, usually in four-mile increments, while her siblings—Kayla, 14, and Jake, 7—join in or ride bikes alongside. A dancer, softball and basketball player, and active student in the sixth grade, Mady enjoys running because it helps her relax. “I really like running. It’s a lot of fun and I like to push myself,” she says, adding that she has a special wooden marker at the Linear Park Trail. “It’s been my goal since I started, and I always try to reach that spot.” Monique, agreed, saying that running is not only a way for her daughter to be social and stay active: It’s her strength. “I think this is going to be her thing,” Monique says. “We joke and say dynamite can come in small packages—and that’s Mady. She’s small but she’s fast.”

Miles over years When Marvin Hachmeister was a kid, most of his peers took the bus home. Marvin, however, decided to run the 4.5mile route every day instead. Each day after basketball, football or baseball practice, and depending on the season, he’d jog home. And sometimes, if the bus took the long route, he’d even beat it home. Marvin attracted the attention of his basketball coach, who took to timing his progress. Despite the school’s lack of a track program and the coach’s inexperience in training runners, the two became a team. “He said, ‘I don’t know anything about training you,’ but if I was fast enough, he’d take me to State,” Marvin says. The two of them researched, worked on techniques and every once in a while lined up other students for a quarter-mile race.

Since Manhattan Running Company opened its doors, it’s been inspiring those of all ages to get out and move. From its products and events to the workers who offer encouragement for all who walk in the door—it’s a runloving environment. That’s exactly the theme that Ben Sigle and Trey Vernon, friends and former college runners, were going for when they opened Manhattan Running Company in 2008. Every Tuesday the shop offers a group-run night for all levels of runners. Beginning at 5:30 p.m., the group meets in front of the store before taking off on one of three planned routes. Anywhere from 30-40 runners show up on a weekly basis to see where leader Alicia Stott will take them; she ensures everyone is accounted for. The group also hosts new-product or sponsor nights, when runners can try out a new style of shoe or clothing, or earn a free beer or pint glass. Between Manhattan and the Salina Running Company, its sister store, seven to nine running events are hosted a year, including the St. Patty’s Day race and Brew 2 Shoe. “The whole goal is to provide a place that people can gain knowledge and good quality service,” Sigle says. “It motivates us to be around people that are out doing the same thing.”

Find Your Race

Plan your year with the Race Calendar at Manhattan Running Company’s website. racecalendar 19



“To give anything less than your best is to sacrifice the gift.� – Steve Prefontaine, world-famous distance runner



identity “That was the only competitive training I had. The rest I did on my own,” Marvin says. Marvin qualified for State his junior and senior years, in 1948 and 1949—and earned the chance to run on an actual track, which at the time was composed of burned cinders. His best mile time was 4:25. After graduation, he attended Fort Hays State, where he had an experienced running coach and was able to compete on a regular basis. Then, three years in, Marvin was drafted and called up to serve in the Korean War. After his military duties, he returned to finish his undergraduate degree, then his master’s—and to resume his running. Today, Marvin—a retired Kansas State University vocational agricultural teacher— continues to run on a weekly, if not daily basis. Though he quit marathons at 62, he still completes 20-25 miles per week in addition to walking his dog, Schatzie, every day. Many of his runs take place at Ahearn Field House, where he meets with the other “regulars,” all of whom are 15-25 years younger than Marvin.

“I run for two reasons: I run for my health and I run for social contact, and that helps my mental health and physical health. I enjoy it and others enjoy it. We’re having fun and that makes me happy.” – Marvin Hachmeister

On his 50th birthday, a few running friends bet Marvin he couldn’t run as many laps as he was years old. Not only did he prove them wrong, he’s done it ever since; and on March 9 he will attempt 83 laps at 83 years young. It’s no wonder that Marvin—a positive, friendly man full of colorful stories—has kept it up all these years. It’s a part of who he is. Marvin’s hometown, Natoma, hosts an annual Labor Day 5K. This past year, his nieces and nephews trained so they could finish before their uncle. He beat them all. Unsurprisingly, Marvin is a staple at local races. He enjoys letting kids beat him, and he notes that people give him a hard time if he doesn’t make it to an event. “If I’m not there, they read the obituary column,” he jokes. “Everything I’ve done has been interesting. I’ve never done anything in my life I don’t like,” he says. “I’ve always liked to do what I do, and that makes me feel good.”

• Landscape design & installation • Rain Bird sprinkler systems • Retaining walls & patios • Lawn mowing • Landscape maintenance • Fertilizer programs


story by Robin Farrell Edmunds

photography by Michael Henry

The Wolf family, from left, Hadleigh, Bri, Katie, Ryker and Tim.

Foster-Family Values Tim and Katie Wolf open their home and hearts to kids in need Tim and Katie Wolf were high school sweethearts. They were married 13 years ago. They have good jobs; two precocious kids, Hadleigh and Ryker; a beautiful home on the outskirts of Wamego and an adorable 6-year-old yorkie-poo named Mr. Higley. They always knew they wanted more children. Or, as Katie says, “I manhattanmagazine


wanted five, we agreed on three and we have two.” The couple realized they were in an ideal position to open their home and hearts to more children. During the winter and spring of 2012, they took 10 weeks of classes through the Kansas Children’s Service League to become a foster family.

Foster parents are required to undergo PS-MAPP training, which stands for Partnering for Safety and Permanence-Model Approach to Partnerships in Parenting. PS-MAPP training begins May 13 (6 to 9 p.m.) at the Seth Child office.


Katie and Bri have developed a motherdaughter relationship quickly. The Wolf family is now in the planning process of adopting.




in addition

Becoming a Foster Family While the Wolf family became a foster family through the Kansas Children’s Service League (KCSL), TFI Family Services also provides training locally. Their office is at 2401 N. Seth Child Road; you can call them at (785) 5391017 or toll-free at (877) 942-2239.

According to the TFI website (www., the following criteria must be met to become a foster parent: Be at least 21 years old and have a permanent residence. Have an outside source of income. Be able to provide adequate bedroom space and a separate bed for each foster child. Complete training that is designed to help you make an informed decision about becoming a foster parent. Provide three personal references. Pass complete background checks. Foster parents will be fingerprinted as part of the federal Adam Walsh Act. Have reliable transportation. Your home will need to pass inspection by the state health department. This is to ensure your home is safe and suitable for children. You do not need to have previous parenting experience, just an open heart and open home!

“We loved it and we learned a ton,” says Katie. “You learn the ins and the outs of the whole system.” Tim concurs. “They were awesome and easy classes. We’re still friends with some of the parents.” They received their temporary license on Wednesday, June 7 at 4:30 p.m. “We got our first phone call at 11:30 the next day,” says Katie, who went to pick up two young brothers, a 3-year-old and a 10-month-old who were in need of immediate care, and who spent five days with the Wolf family. “The three-year-old had been the primary caregiver and referred to his brother as ‘my baby,’” says Katie. “He didn’t like to play at first and was definitely ‘the man of the house,’” adds Tim. Katie recalls taking the 3-year-old shopping and buying him some SpongeBob sandals. The boy couldn’t believe they were really his to keep, she says. As for the baby, “we kind of spoiled him,” Katie smiles. “We taught him patty-cake.” Since that first temporary placement, the family has cared for a total of 12 children. The placements have mostly been police protective custody, or PPC, which means the Wolf family is the first stop after the children have been removed from an unsafe environment. “We’ve had wonderful kids,” says Katie. “We go on with our daily lives, and we treat them as if they were our own.” She takes each child out for a shopping spree. “We don’t do it for the money. It’s their money, and that’s what we use it for,” she

says, noting that the children usually arrive with only the clothes they are wearing and nothing else. Before they leave for the next step in the foster-care process, Katie packs their new items in a big duffel bag, donated by a local company and friends, and embroidered with the child’s name by her mom, Joyce Roeder. The second placement the family received was a young teen girl in early summer 2012. It was to change all their lives: Not only is Bri their foster daughter, they’re currently planning for the process of adding her to their family through adoption. “She’s like our own,” says Katie of Bri. “She just fits. I can’t imagine our lives without her.” A photo montage shows headshots of all three children—Hadleigh, Ryker and the nearly 15-year-old Bri—and if you didn’t know, you would assume they were siblings because they look so much a like. Bri is a year-round volleyball player who had never played sports before. “Her circumstances pulled at me,” says Tim, who admits that his own home environment from ages 9 to 14 should have probably placed him in foster care. “He lived what she’s gone through,” says Katie. Ironically, they discovered that when Tim was 13 years old, he actually attended school with and knew Bri’s mother. “It’s like she’s meant to be here.” The Wolf family will be the first to tell you what a need there is for foster families. “It’s because of the kids. You just have to have a heart and care about the kids,” says Tim.

“We’ve had wonderful kids. We go on with our daily lives, and we treat them as if they were our own.” – Katie Wolf manhattanmagazine


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NONPROFIT S P OTLI G HT Greater Manhattan Community Foundation: Making a Difference Locally

Since 1999, the Manhattan area has been home to its very own Greater Community Foundation, an organization that helps nonprofits grow, prosper and fund their philanthropic endeavors. Located downtown, Manhattan’s Foundation can be summed up as a charity to help charities. “We enjoy sharing with people how the Foundation helps the community and how we might help them reach their goals,” says president and CEO Vern Henricks. “We are here to build relationships between donors and community needs.” By working with local groups, the Greater Manhattan Community Foundation (GMCF) raises awareness, manages funds, provides grants and brings positive attention to public outreach. GMCF operates with the mind-set that by working less on logistics, charities can spend more time doing good. The Foundation helps nonprofits “better understand where they’re at and how to get where they’re going,” Henricks says. Citizens can give funds directly to the GMCF, where they are invested for granting purposes. It’s also a medium in which donations—even specified ones—can be given anonymously. Locally, GMCF works with over 200 funds to varying degrees, according to Elaine Dhuyvetter, GMCF vice president of marketing and programs.

Last year’s Grow Green event brought in just over $141,000 to local charities, $40,000 given as a match. This year, with the national match, president and CEO Vern Henricks says they hope to raise $200,000.

Community Foundation Awards April 13, 6:30 p.m.

“It would make a tremendous impact in our community,” Henricks says.

2nd Annual Grow Green Match Day May 6, 7 a.m.-7 p.m.

This spring, national community foundations celebrate 100 years of service. In accordance with the event, the Greater Manhattan Community Foundation will host its second annual Grow Green Match Day, taking place on May 6. Citizens can give $25-$1,000 to organization(s) of their choice between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. Each dollar will then be “matched” with 50 cents by a local philanthropist. Donors can stop by the Colony Square Atrium for prizes and activities during business hours, or donate online during the 12-hour period. Online pledges will also be matched from the council of foundations national match day activity called “Give Local America.”

To honor local donations of time and support, the Greater Manhattan Community Foundation is slated to host the first-ever Community Foundation Awards, or CFAs. This special event will thank those who have given back to the community. It will be set up as a red-carpet event, with photos, video clips of nominees, desserts and live entertainment. Overall, 10 awards will be given, six of them in an award-show format. The remaining four awards, including the GMCF Lifetime Contribution Award, will incorporate ongoing achievements. “We want to recognize people that support or do good things for the community,” says Elaine Dhuyvetter, vice president of marketing and programs at GMCF. Most importantly, the night will be about celebrating those who are making a difference but aren’t always recognized. “Oftentimes [nonprofit directors] are the silent difference-makers,” says Henricks. “We want people to leave that evening with enough emotion and pride in their community that they’ll support nonprofits even more.”




Get to know Manhattan’s artists

I am an artist because … I can’t imagine doing much else. I loved to draw and paint even in grade school. I have a desire to express myself, and doing that through paint feels the most natural to me. There is something magical that happens when I get in front of a canvas, completely unplug from the world and just be in the moment.

I always paint with one idea. I never complete a piece until I put it away for a week and then get it back out to look at it again with fresh eyes. I find inspiration when I’m outside painting plein air or observing.

I still want to create larger works. I recently completed an 8-foot-wide by 2-foottall piece, and enjoyed the challenge.

My rule of thumb is if I’m not in the groove on a painting, I put it away and work on a different piece. Painting is like … when it’s going well it’s like meditation—being in the moment and not thinking of anything else.

Showing my work is still difficult. My favorite Manhattan event is— not really an event, but we are looking forward to exploring the Konza Prairie.

Monet is not one of my personal favorites, yet he was the founder of impressionism, so anyone painting in an impressionistic way— myself included—owes a debt of gratitude to him. Interview conducted by Katy Ibsen. Photograph by Michael Henry. manhattanmagazine


Editor's Note Join us as we profile a variety of Manhattan’s artists; we learn what brilliance and tricks of the trade inspire their work.

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story by Lou ann thomas

photography by cathy mores

Coffee, Community and Conscience

experience: flavors

Arrow Coffee stakes a claim in Manhattan’s coffee culture

coffee beans directly from the farmers who When David Adkins opened Arrow grow it, ensuring that those farmers are paid Coffee at the corner of Denison and equitably for their hard work. And Arrow Coffee Claflin in August of 2013, he did so maintains the goal of working directly with with the hope of offering not just other companies and individuals who share its coffee, but also a place for people mission. to come together. “We don’t choose companies we work with “In some ways our society is becoming by cost or convenience, but rather we want to more and more disconnected,” David says. “A make sure we share a vision of community, coffee shop is a great place to reconnect. It’s a place where all kinds of people, from all kinds of giving something back and a sense of community sustainability,” David says. backgrounds, can come together.” Along with vanilla, hazelnut and almond David is passionate about coffee. Opening syrups that are made in-house, the breakfast Arrow Coffee has been a dream come true for pastries are also the 26-year-old. “We are always here to assist in homemade and feature The welcoming specific brewing methods, so if you the house specialty, Arrow Coffee has already have any questions, please don’t Monkey Bread. These are become a place where hesitate to ask us.” bread dough balls rolled in people meet. The shop – David Adkins cinnamon and sugar with offers several variations a signature Monkey Sauce drizzled over them of coffee beans and brews, including pourand then baked to form a large cupcake-like, overs, which allows customers to have a freshly pull-apart sweet concoction. brewed cup of their preferred coffee, as well as The daily lunch special might be a threehomemade flavorings to give them an extra cheese grilled cheese sandwich with tomato punch. basil soup, or the Grown-Up PBJ, which features Cameron Hunter is a regular at the coffee fresh ground peanut butter topped with organic shop, although he admits he never cared much jelly on whole grain bread. for the drink before he tried Arrow Coffee’s brew. Arrow Coffee is new and up-to-date, with “The coffee here is incredible,” Cameron says. “I love it! It’s also such a friendly space. The free Wi-Fi and quality brewing equipment, but it is also a throwback to the corner coffee shop customers all talk to each other and the people where people gathered for conversation and working here make you feel so welcome.” community. Arrow Coffee sources its single-origin

Perk up with David Adkins at Arrow Coffee. 31




story by Megan Saunders


photography by Terry Szel

An aerial appetite Flight enthusiast Ron Nordt offers a onestop-shop for lofty learning, speedy travel and a sky-high perspective

Every once in a while Ron Nordt, owner of the Kansas Air Center, would receive a call from an eager 11-year-old boy. “How much time can I get for $34.17?” he’d ask. Without fail, Nordt would invite his young friend to the office he opened in 1986 and take him up in a small airplane, flying him around the Flint Hills for far more time than his $34.17 should have bought. Nordt understood the boy’s passion. “That’s how I got started. I got in an airplane and that was it,” says Nordt. “When I decided I wanted to fly, it was all I wanted to do.” The Kansas Air Center is a fixed-base operator tenant of the Manhattan Regional Airport, where Ron and his staff take care of incoming and outgoing charter airplanes, give flight lessons and aerial tours, fuel the airport’s larger planes and much more. Before becoming a pilot, Nordt was a roofer in Illinois. One day he saw his neighbor leaving and asked where he was headed. “I’m going flying,” the neighbor replied. “Turns out he was a private pilot, so I invited myself along,” says Nordt. “It was the coolest thing I’d ever experienced, and I started taking lessons the next day.” Soon after, Nordt sold his roofing business and started flight school. He took to the skies professionally in 1979 as a flight instructor and then as a line pilot in Manhattan. In 1986, he started his own charter flight company before opening the Kansas Air Center three years later. “We started with just one charter aircraft before it grew into what it is today,” he says. The Kansas Air Center makes traveling easier for both locals and visitors to Manhattan. Nordt says the center’s charter department helps businesses and individuals get to their destinations quickly.

Located at Manhattan Regional Airport, the Kansas Air Center makes the most of its air time.


“If you wanted to go to Tulsa, we can have you there in a hour,” says Nordt. “Otherwise, you’d have to drive to Kansas City and get a flight, or drive five hours. With a chartered plane, we can be at the airport in an hour and have a car waiting for you.” Hospitality is a large part of Nordt’s business. When corporate or chartered planes fly in, Nordt or his staff greets them with a full range of amenities. The center can arrange rental cars or hotel reservations for guests, as well as a courtesy car for pilots, who may only be in town for several hours. Pilots also have access to a lounge and flight-planning center. “We take care of the customers, but we also take care of the pilots,” Nordt says. The Kansas Air Center fuels all the planes that come into Manhattan Regional Airport, including American Eagle, and assists with ground service, baggage and customer service. But at the end of the day, Nordt’s favorite service is the one close to his heart—teaching people to fly. The Air Center owns a four-seat Cessna airplane for this purpose.

“Discovery Flights are great for anyone who wants to go flying for sightseeing, photo tours or as a first flight lesson. … If you’re interested, we’ll let you take over the controls.” – Ron Nordt, Kansas Air Center The same plane can accommodate three passengers for a quick trip to the clouds. “Some people want to fly for a living, others just want to go out for fun,” says Nordt. While it can cost a lot of time and money to earn a pilot’s license—around $7,000 and 40 hours in a plane—the Air Center offers more cost-effective ways to take flight. Individuals can rent planes and pilots for any amount of time, or opt for a Discovery Flight, which takes a passenger on a 30-minute flight for $75. “Discovery Flights are great for anyone who wants to go flying for sightseeing, photo tours or as a first flight lesson,” says Nordt. “If you’re interested, we’ll let you take over the controls.” An added perk of the job is meeting so many people. Nordt greets the entertainers who fly into town every summer for Country Stampede, as well as internationally known Kansas State University Landon Lecture speakers, who have included former Mexican President Vicente Fox and former Soviet Union leader Mikhail Gorbachev. “We’re a lot of people’s first face of Manhattan,” says Nordt. “We only get one chance to make a first impression, so we feel responsible for making people feel welcome.” Including 11-year-old “pilots.”




Becoming a pilot:

fast facts

* Cost: Around $7,000, more if you want to fly professionally. * Hours needed for license: 40, including 20 with an instructor and 20 solo. * Hours needed to fly a chartered plane: Approximately 1,200. * Additional testing: An FAA-administered practical written test and flight check. * Average time for license: 3-4 months. * Ron Nordt’s tip: It’s worth it. 35


dialogue From Blue Angels to green turf, Steven Lambert, general manager at Colbert Hills, found his way to Manhattan after a long friendship with Jim Colbert. After meeting when they were pilots with the Blue Angels, the pair went on to partner in a golf management company during the ’80s and ’90s. “We’ve always stayed in touch,” says Lambert of Colbert encouraging him to come to Kansas. “It didn’t take long for me to say yes, as I knew Manhattan was a great community and I knew the golf course and the clubhouse were special, and I felt it would be a very good fit.” What do you enjoy most about working in Manhattan? Manhattan is a hidden gem. The Flint Hills area is like no other, and the people are very friendly and very real. I feel very fortunate to have the opportunity to live here, and I look forward to being here for a long time. What initiatives are in store for 2014? We’ve got numerous challenges to grow our revenues, as there are several choices for the area’s residents. We know we’ve got a great product, so we need to find ways to get more players and diners to come out here. We’ve introduced a senior fee this year, we’ve reduced the one-time fee to join the Champions Club, and we’re going to give the military personnel a larger reduction on Mondays. We’re also letting everyone know that we can design a food and beverage menu to meet the needs for anyone who is looking for a venue for luncheons, dinners, rehearsal dinners, wedding receptions, etc. We want everyone to know we care and we’re going to do everything possible to make their Colbert Hills experience very positive. If you had one wish for Colbert Hills, what would it be? My one wish for Colbert Hills is for every golfer in Kansas and the surrounding states to have an opportunity to play this classic golf course. Off the course, how do you immerse yourself in the community? I love being a part of this community and I’m part of a great church community, I’m participating in Chamber events, and plan to get involved with other civic organizations. I’m a huge college sports fan and I’m already a big ‘Cat backer. Being single, I’m also exploring the nightlife of Manhattan. Who was your mentor and what wisdom have you received? I’ve had several great mentors from school, from the military, and from the business world. Jim Colbert is definitely one of those mentors, and I’ve always loved one of his mottos: “Just do whatever it takes to get the job done.”

Interview conducted and edited by Katy Ibsen. Photograph by Michael Henry.

Steven Lambert General manager, Colbert Hills

favorite movie Caddyshack

Tin Cup

The Legend of Bagger Vance

Bobby Jones: Stroke of Genius

for grand events...

or everyday occasions!

Downtown Manhattan 302 Poyntz



with your body and mind 785-236-8874


kids yoga studio

(785) 236-8874

photo: Jason Waite

Let Your expLoration Begin Here a family-focused interactive learning center exploring the science and history of the Flint Hills

The Flint Hills Discovery Center explores the geology, biology and cultural history of the Flint Hills - the last remaining tallgrass prairie in North America.

For more information, please visit:

315 S. 3rd Street, Manhattan KS 66502 • 785.587.2726 Like us on Facebook!

Follow us on twitter @DiscoverFHDC


Lee Ann Smith Desper Executive director, United Way of Riley County

on your bucket list? What’s left

Completing my master’s degree this May.

Raising $1,500,000 for United Way.

Learning Spanish.

United Way of Riley County serves Clay, Marshall, Pottawatomie, Riley, Wabaunsee and Washington counties, and Lee Ann Smith Desper is at the helm as executive director. “After spending six [United Way] campaigns with another United Way in Kansas, I decided to work in Manhattan because Manhattan is where my family originally settled in the 1860s,” Desper says. “I liked the idea of Manhattan as a vibrant university town,” she adds. “I also liked the idea of giving back to the community that my family established roots in long ago.” What do you enjoy most about working in Riley County? The people I work with are very special. Each day is wildly different from the other. My position allows me to work with those who have the least in our community and those who are able to share their blessings of time, talent and treasure. What inspires you about working with United Way? United Way has been a part of our community’s core for 70 years. There are many individuals and families who are underemployed and trying to improve their financial stability. United Way is funding programs that change lives by providing financial counseling; domestic-violence counseling, shelter and advocacy; transitional housing; in-school and after-school mentors and other programs that help children succeed in school; dental and health care for the underinsured and uninsured; summer meals for children; and fixed bus routes so that low-wage earners can get to work, doctors’ visits and shopping. If you had one wish for Manhattan, what would it be? My wish for Manhattan is that the people of Manhattan collaborate for greater community change that improves the health, education and financial stability of our neighbors. There is much work to be done. How do you relax in Manhattan? Walking through the downtown community where I work is relaxing and exciting. It gives me the opportunity to connect with many diverse people who make downtown their home. Who was your mentor, and what wisdom have you received? My mentor is The Honorable H. Lee Moffitt of Tampa, Florida (also of the Moffitt Cancer Center). When I was young, he inspired me to make my time on this Earth count—my job, my volunteer work, my time with family and friends. He always reminded me that we have a limited amount of time on this rock and not to waste it. My passion—I want our United Way to be one of the finest in the nation! Together, we can make our caring count, but we must engage in this endeavor united. Everyone’s contributions are needed—thoughts, ideas, volunteer efforts and donations.

Interview conducted and edited by Katy Ibsen. Photograph by Michael Henry. 39


Manhattan John Wertin, D.C. • Jarod Zabel, D.C. • Michael Hamler, D.C.

St. Marys

Wamego Todd Spilker, D.C. Todd Spilker, D.C.

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Day, EvEninG anD wEEkEnD ClassEs afforDablE TuiTion 785-587-2800 • 800-352-7575 For course schedules go to Accredited Through the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools

Features 42 Flint Hills

Community Clinic A group of physicians gives back to Manhattan

48 The Landscapers

Meet the creative minds behind Manhattan’s lush lawns



photography by Michael Henry, assisted by Emily Stewart | interviews conducted by Katy Ibsen

flint hills Community Clinic Yes, Manhattan is a healthy community.

It prospers, it thrives and it exceeds expectations in supporting its own, which is exactly why the Flint Hills Community Clinic (FHCC) is such a vital component. Among the community’s health care consumers are those who are not as fortunate. They work multiple jobs, support a large family or may have found themselves in a time of need. Serving residents who lack health care, the clinic provides a variety of services to those in need, but none of it would be possible with out a team of physicians who volunteer their time.


g roup


physicia ns

g iv es

b a c k


M a nh a t t a n

Debra Doubek, M.D. “I grew up in a small community of 2,500 people called Belleville. The people in our town take care of one another ... through thick and thin. Growing up and seeing this happen, I knew that when I settled in a community, I would want to reach out and care for others who are less fortunate than myself. I consider myself to be very fortunate to have the education that I have, and I realize that others have not had this opportunity. Thus, I can share what I have to share, and that is my medical knowledge and expertise. It is rewarding for me to help others and the patients at the clinic are very appreciative of the care that I give to them. I will continue to be involved in the Flint Hills Community Clinic for as long as I live in Manhattan.”

Debra Doubek is a founding physician of the Flint Hills Community Clinic, which opened in 2005. Practicing since 1992, she practices at Stonecreek Family Physicians, and is the medical director of the Mercy Light weight loss program at Mercy Regional Health Center in Manhattan.



Leland C. Reitz, M.D. “I was recruited by Dr. Steinkruger, M.D. about five years ago to work at the Flint Hills Community Clinic, I have found that the work at the clinic fits my style of medical practice very nicely. I enjoy it because it permits me to rely on the history of the present illness and a focused physical examination rather than on a battery of lab and x-ray tests to arrive at a likely diagnosis and to form a proper management plan. It is a pro-active approach to medicine in contrast to the prevailing defensive framework now in-vogue, which drives cost up to an unsustainable level. It also makes it necessary to seek out the low cost yet equally effective medications to properly treat a disease rather than the newer fashionable medications, which have no distinct advantage over those less expensive. Patients without money, without insurance, and without a job seem much more receptive to reassurance that a disease or an injury will resolve without treatment and are just as happy if not more so than those leaving the clinic with prescription in hand. ... This is what we have to offer patients at the Flint Hills Community Clinic.� - Leland C. Reitz, M.D.

Leland C. Reitz, M.D. retired from full time practice. He is currently serving as the volunteer Medical Director of the Flint Hills Community Clinic and sees patients once a week.

Thomas Kirk, M.D. “A serious health problem forced my retirement from my private practice in 2010. Now that my health has stabilized, I wanted to again have patient and colleague contact without the stress and hassle of running a medical practice. Flint Hills Community Clinic has given me the opportunity to practice in an environment that rewards me and offers a much-needed service for those patients who are working and do not qualify for Medicaid but cannot afford the costs of health insurance. Medical volunteerism brings out the best in doctors, and we have a lot of doctors who provide free services who are not at the clinic. Mercy Regional Hospital should also be praised for their providing much-needed laboratory and radiology services for free.”

Thomas Kirk practiced ophthalmology for 34 years at the Manhattan Medical Center. He was trained in ophthalmology and internal medicine at the Mayo Clinic.



Graham C. Rose, M.D. “Having been blessed throughout my life, I feel compelled to find opportunities to be of service. I volunteer at the Flint Hills Community Clinic because the need is there and I can do something now to satisfy that need. Manhattan prides itself as a community that is always moving forward and celebrating success; however, there are a significant number of our fellow citizens who are struggling. Many of our patients are hardworking individuals who cannot afford access to health care. The clinic becomes their medical home until they are able to enter the medical system that most of us take for granted. It is a privilege to work with the many volunteers who make the clinic a success.”

Graham C. Rose practiced at Pediatric Associates of Manhattan for 35 years until retiring in 2011.



James Dixon Gardner, M.D. “This was an opportunity to work with others in the community to bring services to some who would otherwise have a difficult time to receive these. ... At times I have been able to have some of the patients I would see in the office come to the clinic when they had lost their insurance. I continue to participate and support this clinic with some of my time. It has been good to work with others in the community, and I am impressed with some physicians who have retired from their practices and continue to serve others in their professional role.â€?Â

James Dixon Gardner, M.D. Fellow of the American College of Physicians, has practiced with Primary Care Physicians of Manhattan since 1978. He also practices at Manhattan Primary Care, the Manhattan Medical Center for general internal medicine, and Mercy Regional when admitted patients are in need of a primary care physician.



Landscapers The

meet the creative minds behind Manhattan’s lush lawns s t o r y b y B e t h a n e y Wa l l a c e




photography by Michael Henry and Cathy Mores

Our community full of flowers and manicured lawns, but behind those beautiful scenes are hours of planting, watering and weeding; and behind that effort is often the creative landscaper. We dig in to meet the faces behind the gardening masks and see what exactly goes into making a good landscape great.

blueville nursery

howe landscape

master landscape, inc.



blueville nursery Website Location 4539 Anderson Ave. Number of employees Core group of 50 who work year-round, an additional 50-60 part-time and seasonal employees. Years in business 52 under current ownership, 81 years in existence. Favorite job(s) Integrating water and lighting features, such as waterfalls and ponds, says Dale Larson. What they’re asked the most If Blueville was responsible for a certain project.



Holding the title as the oldest landscaping company in Manhattan, Blueville Nursery has been in business since 1933 and under current ownership since 1962, when Darrell Westervelt bought the company via mail. Having worked part-time for the company before receiving his draft letter, he heard it was for sale, and he had Blueville waiting for him after returning from his Army service. Today it’s run by his son, Keith, CEO and president, who has overseen operations since 1997. Though he worked at Blueville in college, Keith went out on his own to gain some independent knowledge before returning to the business. “I got some really good experience that I wouldn’t have gotten if I’d just gone into the family business,” Keith says, adding jokingly that it might have been impossible for him and his father to work together. “I worked for a company with good core values, and they taught me so much.” For the past 16 years, Keith has worked with Blueville’s long-standing employees to create a friendly, trustworthy business. In fact, many of them are practically family, having worked with Blueville for 30 to 40 years along with a new generation that has been with the company for 10 to 15 years. “We try to treat each other like family,” Keith says. “We try to respect each other and be nice.” Blueville is split into separate divisions: landscaping, garden store,

maintenance, irrigation, growing, administration and Fort Riley the latter of which is a small crew certified to work on the grounds of Fort Riley. By splitting the company into categories, Keith says it’s easier to determine individual roles and how each one supports Blueville. Employees are also allowed to purchase stock in the company, which provides added perks. One employee happy to come to work each day is Dale Larson, landscape supervisor. Having been with Blueville more than 10 years, Larson enjoys the opportunity to work outside, even in extreme Kansas conditions. “Unless it’s just really bad, there’s always something to be done,” he says. That “something” can range from planting flowers and trees, to setting walls or other hardscape structures, such as grills or lights, or large commercial installations. And while Larson certainly has past projects he’s most proud of, he also loves taking the time to teach others the art of landscaping. “It’s very rewarding to have a young person come out that’s interested in what you’re doing,” he says. “I get more out of that than anything.” But his “students” aren’t the only ones learning. Despite a decade of experience, Larson says there’s still plenty to take in. “The nice thing about Blueville is that it’s so diversified. It’s so easy to say ‘I don’t now but I’ve got somebody who does.’ And then it’s fun to see how great things turn out.”

Blueville Nursery CEO and president Keith Westervelt





HOWE LANDSCAPE Website Location Just off Highway 77 in Riley. Number of employees 15 full-time, and an additional 45-50 during busy months. Years in business 20, founded in 1993. Favorite job(s) Cory LeMay enjoys working in the Grand Mere area. What they’re asked the most The spelling of Howe. “You can’t say it without people thinking ‘Howell,’” Todd Lagerman jokes.

OPPOSITE Howe Landscape team from left, Todd Lagerman, Scott Howe, Ryan Lynch, Cory LeMay.

Known for the famous “We’ll show you Howe” slogan, Howe Landscape has been serving the Manhattan area since 1993. From residential to commercial projects, it’s a company that spreads its talent base throughout the city and beyond. Two of the company’s landscape designers, Cory LeMay and Todd Lagerman, have been in the business since college, each having earned a horticulture degree from Kansas State University. Together they share 45 years of combined experience in commercial and residential designs. In fact, about 75 percent of Howe’s reach is residential, including new homes in the Colbert Hills/Grand Mere area, and 25 percent is commercial. “There’s a lot of personal satisfaction seeing something develop,” says Lagerman, adding that he and other designers can often recognize who designed which house, knowing who prefers which plants. And though he doesn’t have a signature plant, both agree that LeMay’s is viburnum, a flowing bush that comes in all colors. It’s the variety that brings him back every time. “Several types are really hearty and thrive here in Manhattan,” LeMay says. “They offer quite a range.” Typically, however, a client’s opinion wins out. This means finding a happy medium that will fit Kansas’

weather. “We want to give our customers a product that will work for them and that they’ll be happy about,” says LeMay. But that goal isn’t limited to landscape; it branches out into the company’s other specialties, such as irrigation, maintenance and snow removal, with the help of Ryan Lynch as the Maintenance Division manager. Along with its main location in Riley, which is also where the company grows its plants and trees, Howe has a planning office in Manhattan where designers and clients can meet, and where Lagerman and LeMay draw up designs for future landscaping jobs. Both designers now spend much of their time behind a desk. That wasn’t always the case, but with the ongoing demands of their jobs, both say sometimes the indoor jobs are a necessity. “I really miss [being outside]; it just isn’t always possible. There’s too much to do,” says Lagerman. But the finished product makes it all worthwhile—whether in or out of doors. “We get the most satisfaction from return customers and building that client base,” says Lagerman. “It’s nice to go to a new job, but it’s even better to be in someone’s yard year after year adding new things, and that relationship.”



MASTER LANDSCAPE, INC. Website Location 2040 Fort Riley Blvd. Number of employees Between 12 and 15 full-time, and up to 25 during busy months. Years in business 28 (the company first came together in February of 1986). Favorite job(s) Unique landscapes that allow them to incorporate native grasses, different perennials, water features and hardscaping. What they’re asked the most How do we improve our landscape, and can your company provide the design and installation?



Back in 1986, two of Manhattan’s smallest landscape companies joined forces; they were so small, in fact, they didn’t even have names. Al Alspach and June Schnittker both had their own specialties and enjoyed helping others with their lawn needs on the side. But after seeing a need for their combined talents, they teamed up, with Alspach becoming president of the new company and Schnittker becoming vice president in 2013. Eventually they gained a third owner, Jeff Chaffee, who serves as operations manager. Master Landscape has been growing ever since. The company operates out of a limestone house off Fort Riley Boulevard, that Schnittker says is one of the oldest houses in town, built in the 1860s. This where they meet with customers, share handdrawn plans and enjoy the charm that only a 150-year-old structure can provide—creaking wood floors and all. An additional location (with growing grounds) lies east of town. Despite being a full-service landscape company, Master Landscape adds a touch of quaint tradition to each project it takes on. Whether it’s using products from an all-organic line, producing their own compost or incorporating native grasses, they create authentic, one-of-a-kind outdoor designs—for example, planting a yard full of sunflowers and tall grasses versus a traditional lawn.

“We try to promote the use of more native [plants] even in residential projects,” Alspach says. They also specialize in “xeriscape” designs, which require little water usage. This is a great option for areas with drainage issues, Alspach says, adding that mixing in compost helps with water and nutrition retention. “You kind of get to where you know the areas of town with thin soil, but sometimes you just have to stick a shovel in the ground and see what you’ve got,” he says. More recently, the company has ventured into the Christmaslighting business—everything from selling and designing to putting up and taking down the decorations. They’ll even store them for customers who don’t have the space. This past winter, they helped design and plan Blue Earth Plaza’s lighting in downtown Manhattan. Though they may not be the largest operation in town, they may be the proudest; it’s a pride that resonates when Alspach and Schnittker reminisce about projects or neighborhoods. The duo also has projects they tend to themselves. Not only does it get them out of the office, it gives them a chance to take pride in their years-long venture. “There’s great satisfaction in being able to provide an environment the customer is really going to enjoy,” Schnittker says. “To know you did that is a really good feeling.”

Jamie Crowell working in the Master Landscape, Inc. greenhouse.




story and photography by Lou Ann Thomas

Day Trippin’ with lou ann THOMAS:


Follow Highway 24 for an Oz-some adventure in Wamego manhattanmagazine



Kansas Sampler Festival in Wamego Wamego is the host city for the 2014 and 2015 Kansas Sampler Festival, held the first weekend in May, as part of the Kansas Sampler Foundation’s effort to celebrate all things Kansas. “It’s the 25th year of the Kansas Sampler Festival, and that, coupled with Wamego’s strong and well-deserved reputation for hosting big and fun events, will help make this the best Sampler Festival yet,” says Julie Roller, Pottawatomie County economic development associate and Wamego Kansas Sampler Festival director. Visitors will enjoy high-quality food, art, entertainment, and a wide variety of Kansas-made products, all showcased in one place. More than 150 communities, from every part of the state and of every size are represented. New this year is the Kansas photographers’ tent, helping showcase the beauty of the state, and back by popular demand is the beer and wine tent, where Kansas producers can offer samples of their products and sell wine by the bottle. And don’t miss the entertainment, including the Diamond W Wranglers from Wichita, performing at The Columbian Theatre.

I agree with Dorothy Gale when in The Wizard of Oz she clicks her heels and says, “There’s no place like home.” Full disclosure: For this issue, I am taking you on a day trip to my hometown of Wamego. From Manhattan, it’s just a short drive east on Highway 24, but Wamego offers a wealth of unique things to see and enjoy. Off to see the Wizard You can’t drive down Lincoln Avenue, the main drag, without noticing Wamego’s bounty of Oz attractions. Among them are the Oz Museum, featuring the largest privately owned Oz memorabilia collection. With over 30,000 visitors last year, the museum’s collection includes the original books by L. Frank Baum, the 1939 movie and treasures from the Broadway production of The Wiz. “We have some very unique and rare items on display, like two of the four original flying monkeys from the movie,” says Clint Stueve, executive director of the Columbian Theatre Foundation, which oversees the museum as well as The Columbian Theatre. For any Oz fan, you’ll find one-of-a-kind Ozthemed gifts, from T-shirts to coffee mugs to the “Emergency Witch Melting Kit” at the gift shop.

Editor's Note Manhattan Magazine is celebrating the open road by sending regular contributor Lou Ann Thomas day trippin.’ Follow her adventures to nearby destinations in this quarterly column.

Downtown Wamego is popular with Wizard of Oz attractions and good old-fashioned hospitality. Shops and museums abound in Wamego, including John’s Shoe & Saddle Repair, above left, and the Meinhardt Historical Farm Equipment Museum.




in addition

Don’t Miss Wamego City Park This 12-acre park located a block east of Lincoln Avenue is considered one of the best picnic spots in the state. Schonhoff Dutch Mill This historic mill, built in the 1870s, is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and has stood sentinel in the City Park since it was dismantled and brought into Wamego from 12 miles north. Each stone was numbered and transported to town by 35 horse-drawn wagons in 1924, and the mill was reconstructed stone by stone on this picturesque knoll overlooking the park. Wamego Historical Museum and Prairie Town Village THIS PAGE Any repurposing up-cycler will find plenty offeaturing goodies at aDeeDee’s This complex Jewelry and Vintage Décor. museum and historical buildings OPPOSITE PAGE is Back in Thyme from the 1800s located on is just one of Bonner Springs’ bed and the east side of the City Park, breakfast retreats. next to the Schonhoff Dutch Mill. The museum traces the evolution of Wamego and Pottawatomie County from the Konza and Potawatomi Indians to modern day. (www.

The Tin Man welcomes visitors to the gift shop at the Oz Museum.

Eat Shop Explore in wamego

Oz Museum Columbian Theatre Oz Winery Toto’s Tacoz

The museum’s collection includes the original books by L. Frank Baum, the 1939 movie and treasures from the Broadway production of The Wiz.

Meinhardt Historical Farm Equipment Museum 18035 E. Highway 24 (785) 456-2041 Call to arrange a tour. Kreem Kup 601 E. Highway 24 (785) 456-2555

John’s Shoe & Saddle Repair 404 Lincoln Ave. (785) 456-2872

Friendship House 507 Ash (785) 456-9616

Barleycorn’s Bar & Deli 410 Lincoln Ave. (785) 456-7421

Friendly Cooker 520 Lincoln Ave. (785) 456-8460

Paramour Artisan Coffee

The Oz attractions continue at The Columbian Theatre, where six beautifully restored historic murals hang upstairs in the Peddicord Playhouse. The murals, brought back to Wamego by J. C. Rogers, a local businessman, were from the 1893 Columbian Exposition at the Chicago World’s Fair. Author Baum also visited this fair, where he drew inspiration for creating the Emerald City in The Wizard of Oz. The Theatre is home to the Swogger Gallery, featuring work from local and regional artists. Both the work in the gallery and the murals can be viewed for a suggested donation. The Oz Winery is the third heel click of any good Oz tour in Wamego. Whimsical blends include Ding Dong the Wine is Red and Witch Gone Good. The shop hosts tastings and sells unique wine accessories, souvenirs, gift bags and glasses, as well as a variety of cheeses, chocolates and even cigars. Owner Brooke Balderson, a Cordon Bleu-trained chef, hosts private tastings with hors d’oeuvres. “We try to tailor a private tasting to individual needs, providing everything from specific information on the wines, how they pair best with food—or just pour and let you enjoy,” says Balderson. Ag history Wamego is more than just Oz. It is home to the Meinhardt Historical Farm Equipment Museum, which preserves and presents the area’s rich agricultural history. The nearly 21,000-square-foot building next to KanEquip, a half mile east of the Highway 24 and 99 intersection, is filled with antique toys, signs, farm equipment and cars—from a 1909 International truck and 1922 Ford Model T Depot Hack, to a circa-1900 New Holland horse-drawn engine. Rows of Allis-Chalmers, International Harvester and Oliver tractors line the building, most restored and still running. Owner and curator Jim Meinhardt will tell you where every vehicle and piece of machinery originated.

Paramour Artisan Coffee


Full menu of coffee, espresso drinks and homemade breakfast sandwiches and muffins

(785) 458-5282 810 4th Street Wamego, KS 66547

open 7 days a week

Much like Meinhardt, John Lyon is preserving the past. His store, John’s Shoe and Saddle Repair, offers a step back in time. Saddles new and old, bridles and other tack line the front of the store, and the smell of leather lures you to the back, where owner Lyon is likely repairing a vintage saddle or making a new bridle.

LEFT The Schonhoff Dutch Mill continues to attract visitors for its presence on the National Register of Historic Places. RIGHT Vintage signs at the Meinhart Museum pique the interest of visitors.

Annual Events Wamego is known as a community that likes to party, featuring a number of annual events.

Fourth of July Wamego’s Fourth of July celebration includes one of the longest and largest continuously running parades, having marched down Lincoln for more than 140 years. A carnival, car shows, ice cream socials and the largest hand-fired fireworks display in the Midwest cap off the multiday celebration.

Let’s eat From Oz-inspired Mexican to a warm cup of joe, Wamego’s culinary delights are a popular draw. Toto’s Tacoz offers fresh, made-to-order Mexican right in front of you. The Lincoln Avenue eatery is casual and colorful with a patio-like atmosphere. If you’re in the mood for something heartier, consider Friendship House, where the menu offers grandmother’s favorites. This homelike setting features made-from-scratch bakery items, sandwiches, salads and soups. Don’t forget the cup of joe. Paramour Artisan Coffee not only roasts its own coffee beans, its café menu has just the right blend for your afternoon drive back.

Tulip Festival Every April, Wamego is ablaze with thousands of tulips in bloom, and the community celebrates with the Tulip Festival. Craft and food vendors fill the park, and live entertainment adds to the fun.

OZtoberfest Celebrating the message and meaning of The Wizard of Oz, Wamego hosts well-known Oz historians, authors and even descendants of L. Frank Baum for this fall festival, held the end of September or first of October. Craft booths line Lincoln Avenue, and special events are held at the Oz Museum and The Columbian Theatre.

Bike Rides Every fall, cyclists gather for the Yellow Brick Road Bike Ride. After breakfast they can choose a 15- or 50-mile ride through rolling hills and along the Kansas River.

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March, April, May & Junee e v e n t s Community Appreciation Day at Sunset Zoo March 22 Sunset Zoo A free day at the Zoo! In appreciation of the community’s support, all guests receive free admission from noon to 5 p.m. Preschoolers in the Flint Hills: Cookin’ & Campin’


Community Foundation Awards April 13 Hilton Garden Inn The Greater Manhattan Community Foundation presents its 1st Annual Community Foundation Awards at the Hilton Garden Inn. This is a special evening focusing on our local nonprofits, volunteers and philanthropists. Tickets are $10, begins at 6:30. See our story on the GMCF on page 26!

April 8

Senior Prom

Flint Hills Discovery Center

April 26

Preschool age children begin discovering the wonder of the Flint Hills where they live, but look beyond the city limits in their exploration. Dramatic play is taken to its fullest extent during this session while kids learn about camping in the Flint Hills. Registration required. Begins at 1 p.m.

Houston Street Ballroom The Manhattan Parks and Recreation 2014 Senior Prom for adults over the age of 50 kicks off with a night of dinner, dancing and live music featuring “Bobby Layne & His Orchestra.” Held at the Houston Street Ballroom. Tickets are available at the Manhattan Parks and Recreation Office (1101 Fremont St.), 6-9 p.m. (785) 587-2757 Run for the Hills May 3 Flint Hills Discovery Center This 5K run/walk supports the NorthCentral Flint Hills Area Agency on Aging. Race-day activities begin at 7 a.m. at Blue Earth Plaza outside of the Flint Hills Discovery Center. See our story on the MHK runners on page 18!

v e n t s arts




Early Release Workshop: Papermaking May 7 Beach Museum of Art Handmade paper incorporating plants from The Meadow at the Beach Museum of Art. For ages 5 and up and only $3-$5 per participant. Begins at 2 p.m. Arts in the Park May 23 Larry Norvell Band Shell The Manhattan High School Pops Choir and Thundering Cats Big Band kick off the annual Arts in the Park at the Larry Norvell Band Shell in Manhattan City Park. Begins at 8 p.m. 26th Annual Manhattan Area Garden Tour June 8 Kansas State University Gardens Visit the Kansas State University Gardens along with five private local landscapes in our community for this unique garden tour. Tickets are $8. Begins at 1 p.m. SEND US YOUR EVENTS Have an event you would like to share with readers? Send details to All events subject to change.




Manhattan Magazine  
Manhattan Magazine  

Feeling rejuvenated, we welcome spring (and coffee, landscapers, artists, runners and much more) to our glossy pages this season.