May 27, 2009

Kansas Capitol Building - Topeka, KS

Wondering where I have been for the last few weeks? Everywhere! I have been working like a mad woman back and forth between Kansas and Missouri for both my jobs. This resulted in a lot of traveling, but absolutely no free time to talk about it. So I'm going to work on getting caught up, starting with my trip last Tuesday to the Kansas Capitol building in Topeka!

I went to Topeka for a rally and to join many supporters of women's access to health care in delivering petitions to Governor Parkinson. But, this is not my political or ideological forum so enough about that and on to the Capitol building itself.

A significant portion of the capitol building is currently under renovation so there is little to see on the south side except for scaffolding. The original capitol building took thirty-seven years to complete from 1885 to 1922 and cost $3,200,588.92.

Like most state capitols, the Kansas Capitol building features a prominent dome. The tradition of the dome is meant to model a state's capitol after the nation's capitol building in Washington D.C., though there are a few notable exceptions. The Kansas dome keeps with the Corinthian and French architecture style and was part of the original 1885 design of the capitol, but the figure on top of the dome is new.

The figure is named Ad Astra, meaning "to the stars." The bronze statue, added in 2002, is 22 feet and 2 inches tall and weighs 4,420 pounds. (Fun Fact: The oldest known graffiti on the dome dates back to 1903.) I didn't have time, what with my political activities and all, but you can tour the inside of the dome. If you can make it up 296 steps to the top of the dome that is.

Total Trip Time: 6 hours
Total Travel Distance: 140 miles

May 21, 2009

Kauffman Stadium - Kansas City, MO

Recently, I went to see the Kansas City Royals play against the Cleveland Indians in the Royals' 37th season at Kauffman Stadium. Kauffman Stadium or "The K" has recently undergone some amazing renovations. And with the Royals starting to actually win games, there have been a lot more people in the stands to enjoy the new and improved home of the team.

The $250 million renovation broke ground on October 3, 2007 but the final game of the old stadium wasn't played until September of last year. This is the first season fans can enjoy new ammenities like the high definition scoreboard and the 150-seat restaurant Rivals Sports Bar. If you don't want to watch the game, there are certainly some amazing attractions to catch your eye. Such as the 322-foot-wide water spectacular - the largest privately funded fountain in the world!

I had a great time with my family watching the game. And what a good game it was! We finally left around the end of the eighth inning when it looked like the Royals were going to lose 5-2. But as we are driving home, we hear on the radio that the Royals have scored back to back homeruns! The score is now 5-4! We listen in shock how at the bottom of the ninth, the Royals score a total of four runs to win the game 6-5! Amazing!

Total Trip Time: 3 hours

Total Travel Distance: 31 miles

Soundtrack: 610 Sports Radio