Tuesday, September 13, 2011


Yes, there is a place in Wichita called Cowtown...actually it's the Old Cowtown Museum. It's a "living history" museum where you immerse yourself in the life of the 1870s in an authentic cattle town...like in all those Western movies! There is a whole line-up of historic buildings complete with boardwalks, period artifacts inside those buildings and costumed history interpreters wandering around. Here's the old Wichita train depot!

You can catch glimpses of Cowtown in a lot of movies.  One of my favorites was the movie version of the beloved book "Sarah Plain and Tall". I wish Glenn Close and Christopher Walken would return to Wichita to shoot another movie! I think I'll put that on my Net Flix list to enjoy again...check it out if you haven't seen it!

The last time I was at Cowtown (embarassingly) was as a field trip driver with my daughter Sarah's 5th grade class. "Whoa, Nelly" (old west talk)...that's been a long time! I also remember volunteering there as a Girl Scout when I was in elementary age. The Girl Scouts always provided a source of cheap labor for the summer season. They loaned you a character costume, and you memorized a short speech to recite whenever visitors came into your particular building. I remember a long, lonely afternoon in the church hoping for company! This lady below looked a little lonely, too - she needs some cross stitch in her hands!

So we returned recently with our adult pals for a Cowtown Wine Mosey!  Who knew they drank wine in the old West??? It was a fundraiser (and they always need the support), so we do what we can. Armed with our own Cowtown wine glasses, we moseyed from building to building, sampling here and there, enjoying all the scenery and finishing with a great barbecue dinner. I sure do appreciate all the buildings and antifacts more now than I did when I was young!

Here's some of the action we found in Cowtown. Sadly, the photo ops ended when the sun went down because it is "authentically" DARK in Cowtown when the sun sets in the West!

I checked out the General Store, looking for that elusive needlework. This is a REAL store, imported from a nearby small town with all the cool old fixtures, etc.

Then we moseyed to the blacksmith shop where a very chatty blacksmith was making a prop for his Halloween costume - pretty scary stuff! I'm sure OSHA hasn't visited him, because he wasn't wearing gloves or an apron, and he had the scar-speckled hands to prove it!

We had to rescue our men from the clutches of the saloon girls with their pretty petticoats - those hussies!

Then - HORRORS - a gunfight broke out on Main Street. We were close to the action and the men were really going at it, until this rifle-toting lady in the blue dress broke up the fight! This is a good pic to see one of the dusty streets, authentically scattered with cow doo. The experienced re-enactors carefully "died" away from the stinky manure. 

Afterwards, everyone smiled, made up and posed for photos! That's me in the black shirt in middle and my friend Deb on the left. You can see the rest of the gang on a Wanted poster!

Yes, it was just another day in the Old West and a fun adventure with some of our pals. Happy Trails, y'all!



  1. Sounds like a very fun day! I live in Georgia, so I still see alot of the old train depots. It's fun to see all the historic stuff where we live. I love the old plantation homes, but I must say I love my air condition, and southern belle dresses are beautiful, but I am very glad we don't have to wear all those layers! Thanks for sharing Linda!


  2. We have a place called the Genesee Country Museum in upstate New York that also has re-enactments of earlier times and it is such a treat to visit. I loved your trip through the "Old West"....thanks for sharing what looks like a lot of fun! Barbara

  3. It looks like you had a great time!! I'd love to go to something like that (without the wine, lol).