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Tripping my trigger in Russell County

Bunker Hill, Kansas -Russell, Kansas -Waldo, Kansas -Luray, Kansas
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Sometime people ask why they should "dare to do dirt" and visit small towns.

The answer:  If you have the Explorer spirit in you, you will find a little something that will tickle your fancy every time.

Here are some of those ticklers that we found in Russell County when ERVing July 10-12, 2013.

We were on our way to the Bunker Hill cemetery and drove by this tastefully done tower of Russell County rock!

It's not often that you see bleachers and a stage in a cemetery!

But you'll find them in the Bunker Hill cemetery, one mile north and one mile east of town.

Live bait, cold beer.  The essentials.  Gotta love it.  It's one mile north of Bunker Hill, the corner to the cemetery which is also the corner to Wilson Lake.

In Waldo, it's a real leaner...

...and nearby is a house with three pointers!

This one didn't really tickle my fancy.  In fact, it made me cringe!  Still, you have to see it to believe it -- and this was only one jar of the collection!  Dr. Herrick was the local dentist from 1910 into the 1950s.  For $2 he'd pull your tooth -- and keep it.  It's on display at the Fossil Museum in Russell.

At the Cattl-Ac Cafe on K-18 at Luray they'll spin some good food to you on this counter top made from a bowling alley lane!

Be truthful.  Have you ever seen a stop sign on a limestone post?  You will in Luray!

I know.  I lost you after the jar of teeth.  I'll stop.

See you down the road as we go to every incorporated city in Kansas!  Kansas Explorer #2, Marci Penner




Nice touches in Russell County

Russell, Kansas -Dorrance, Kansas
Nice touches come in all forms.

An angel found in Russell's Lincoln Park.

Step inside Russell's post office to see Section Art painted by Martyl Schweig in 1940. 

If someone cared enough to put up a commemorative memorial to the Carrie
Oswald No. 1 discovery well of the Fairport Oil Field, then, by golly, we were
willing to go out of the way to see it.  The view from this memorial offers a
grand vista of the Smoky Hills dotted with oil wells.  From Gorham, go one
mile east to the black top, 177th Road.  Go north 9 miles to Beatty Road,
turn west for a mile.  It's on the north side of the road.

Limestone rock arts honors three influential men in the oil field business.

Dorrance, good job in remembering your fire department brothers.

A happy sign welcoming people to the Dorrance city park.

These are some nice touches we see as we explore and ERV around Kansas. 

See you down the road, KE #2 Marci Penner




A trifecta of charismatic places to eat in Russell County

Russell, Kansas
There are many good places to eat in Russell County.  Meridy's in Russell has some of the best steaks anywhere.  San Juan, 740 E. Wichita, is a great place for Mexican in Russell. 

Aside from the beautiful stone, you have to look closely to see the Bunker Hill Cafe sign.  It's across from the Smoky Hill public television station building.  It's open Thursday-Saturday 5-9 p.m.  Call for reservations, 785.483.6544.

Owner and cook Tom Taggart gives you the freshest in ingredients.  He even makes the salad dressings.

Select your main dish and then you get a choice of sides.  Raisin bread, twice-baked potatoes, corn on the cob complimented the chicken fried sirloin steak.  The Bunker Hill Cafe has long had a certificate from the Kansas Sampler Foundation for doing the chicken fried steak the Explorer Way, 1)  fresh meat, 2) hand-breaded, and 3) grill or pan fried.

Along with a thick boneless pork loin, grain-fed catfish, salmon, boiled giant green shrimp, stuffed shrimp, jumbo King crab legs, there is Kansas buffalo, Kansas elk (when available) and a vegetarian dinner.

The Old 40 Bar and Grill is the stop to make in Dorrance.  The grill is open daily 11 a.m.-2 p.m. and Wednesday-Saturday 5:30-8 p.m.

The burgers are juicy with hand-formed patties.  Fries are hand cut.

You get to sign your name on the wood shelves!

Waudby's Bar in downtown Russell is a fun place to eat.

With high tin-pressed ceilings and wooden floors, it's old but trendy.

Once known as Waudby's Pool Hall, it still offers some of that early nostalgia.  Shoot a round while waiting for your food!

Exploring Kansas is about finding good places to eat with atmosphere.  All three of these places fill the bill.

As you know, it's part of our research job to find and try these types of places!

See you down the road, KE #2 Marci Penner




Hello Dolly!

Russell, Kansas

We don't always know the extraordinary talents located in our rural communities.  Dustin Poche' has moved back to Russell and you must see his web site.  The pictured doll, found in D.Palma & Co. Mercantile, is one of his fun dolls.

The following is taken from the "about" section of Poche's web site:

Dustin Poche is a Midwestern multi media artist who has created great excitement with his sculptures and original “one of a kind” dolls. Each piece is individually designed, painted and crafted by him. His use of antique and vintage materials along with couture sewing methods bring a uniqueness and originality to his works of art.

Dustin was formally educated at the Colorado Art Institute. He draws his inspiration from his love of period fashion and his work experience in New York, where his career involved costume design, textiles, and illustration within the fashion industry.

Following his creative instincts and his desire to return to the Midwest, he began to sculpt and create “heirloom” quality dolls. His works of art are timeless and destined to be passed from generation to generation.

His dolls are a work of art.  Really!  Take a look at

Amazed on the road, KE #2 Marci Penner