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Guest Speakers At Bentley Senior Center Share About Exploring Kansas

Posted 8/24/2017

By Debbie ParksMARCI Penner, left, and WenDee Rowe spoke at the Bentley Senior Center last week about their book, “Kansas Guidebook for Explorers.”MARCI Penner, left, and WenDee Rowe spoke at the Bentley Senior Center last week about their book, “Kansas Guidebook for Explorers.”

BENTLEY—Bentley community residents enjoyed a delicious potluck luncheon last Friday at the Bentley Eagle Senior Center.  If you went away hungry, it was your own fault because there was a nice variety of food brought in by several attendees.

Senior Center President, Starla Black, offered an opening prayer and then all were invited to go through the buffet line, and after the meal Tracy Pribbenow introduced the guest speakers, Marci Penner and WenDee Rowe.  Penner did the speaking and answered questions from the audience while Rowe ran the video slides that matched what Penner was talking about.  The seminar’s title was “Exploring Kansas With the Help of a Guidebook.”

The two ladies composed a book after traveling to 626 towns in Kansas between 2012 and 2015 titled “Kansas Guidebook for Explorer.” Penner thanked all those who had come out that day to attend the seminar.

Penner involved the attendees in the seminar by inviting everyone to stand.  She named specific places in Kansas that anyone could visit that were in the guidebook.  If a person had been there, they were to remain standing.  The last person standing was Annette Marker, and Penner presented Annette with a new copy of the “Kansas Guidebook for Explorers.”

Penner shared with the group that she and her dad had started visiting Kansas towns when her dad was still alive. That activity spurred Penner on to continue with Rowe after her dad passed away.

Penner told the attendees that the guidebook was divided into eight categories. One of the categories was Architecture.  Penner spoke about bridges she had enjoyed seeing while traveling about Kansas.  One bridge named the Bois D’Arc Bridge was built in 1885.  It is a one-way plank bridge that was built by the WPA in Paradise in Russell County. Another architecture wonder was the Whitewater Falls Stock Farm located in Towanda in Butler County.  The barn was built in 1908 and once housed beautiful Percheon horses.

Another architecture spot is the Queen Ann Home – Painted Lady, an interesting house in Belleville.  An interesting picture of shovelheads made to look like a pinecone is at Lake Wabunsee. Since 1978 there has been a 15-tons stone buffalo near Lucas in Russell County.  The 50-foot wide stone buffalo sits on top a tree range.  Buffalo live in the pasture there along with one zebra.  

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