Kansans to choose wonders
Representatives of the 24 finalists for the 8 Wonders of Kansas were invited to the Kansas Sampler Center near Inman June 1 for the first public announcement of the 24.
The finalists include Arikaree Breaks, Cheyenne County; ball of twine, Cawker City; Big Brutus, West Mineral; hand-dug well, Greensburg; Brookville Hotel, Abilene; Chase County Courthouse, Cottonwood Falls; Cheyenne Bottoms/Quivira National Wildlife Refuge, Barton and Stafford counties; Cimarron National Grassland, Morton County; Constitution Hall State Historic Site, Lecompton; John Steuart Curry murals, State Capitol, Topeka; Davis Memorial, Hiawatha; Eisenhower Center, Abilene; Fort Larned National Historic Site, Pawnee County; Garden of Eden, Lucas; Gyp Hills Scenic Drive, Barber County; Kansas Cosmosphere and Space Center, Hutchinson; Kansas Underground Salt Museum, Hutchinson; Keeper of the Plains, Wichita Lake; Scott State Park, Scott County Monument Rocks/Castle Rock, Gove County; Pawnee Indian Museum State Historic Site, Republic County; St. Fidelis Church, "Cathedral of the Plains," Victoria; St. Mary's Church, St. Benedict; Tallgrass Prairie National Preserve/the Flint Hills, Chase County.
At the end of March, the Kansas Sampler Foundation launched a project to find the 8 Wonders of Kansas. Though this was one number off the original Seven Wonders of the World, the number eight represented the eight rural culture elements established by the Foundation: architecture, art, commerce, cuisine, customs, geography, history, and people.
After public nominations, a selection committee met to determine the 24 finalists.
Foundation director Marci Penner said, "The real purpose of this campaign is to encourage people to know more about their state," foundation director Marci Penner said. "We hope the fun of this project will inspire them to travel to all 24 sites this summer and fall before they vote. They'll find lots of other great stops along the way, too."
The public can learn more about each site at 8wonders.org. Public voting will take place from June 1 to Dec. 31. On Kansas Day 2008 (Jan. 29), Gov. Kathleen Sebelius will announce the 8 Wonders of Kansas as determined by public vote.
Online voting is highly encouraged but brochures and ballots can be obtained at the indoor finalist sites, printed from 8wonders.org, or by calling (620) 585-2374.