Our Changing Lives

Visit Like A Local

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Smoky Goodness at El Pollo Rey

The Armourdale section of Kansas City, Kansas is filled with small businesses, and hard working families. Restaurants in the area like El Pollo Rey may cater to the local residents, but their creations draw customers from all around the metro. Many of the buildings that house these restaurants have been home to a variety of businesses in the past. An example of this is the building at 901 Kansas Avenue. During its time as a Dairy Queen, we would frequent it on Wednesday evenings after church services. Of course, this was during my younger years. Since those days, we have not frequented any of the numerous businesses that have occupied the grounds, until this latest enterprise.Continue reading

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Walk Through Time at the Kansas Museum of History

In 1984 the Kansas Museum of History was opened in Topeka by the Kansas Historical Society. This 30,000 square foot building sits on 80 acres in the northwest section of the city. The museum hosts traveling exhibits, as well as the permanent displays. There are 4 walking trails on the property to allow for views on the native grasslands and waterways. The main gallery features the permanent exhibits in chronological order following the history of Kansas. It begins with a look at the Native American tribes who populated the plains. It gives an overview of each of the tribes who lived or traveled through the Kansas region, and includes a lodge house, as well as a teepee.Continue reading

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New Kid on the Block Taco Republic

Kansas City, Kansas is home to many great Mexican food restaurants. It seems that you can drive a couple miles from anywhere in the city, and find one. If we could, we would try them all. Unfortunately, like BBQ joints, there are just too many. One we enjoy when we are in the KU area is Taco Republic. It is located in the Rosedale section of town, and sits right on the south edge of the county line.Continue reading

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Cheap Eats: 5 Ways to Dine Out For Less

It is safe to say that most people enjoy a meal out at least once in a while. For us we prefer this more often than not. It is entertaining, educational, and opens you up to new possibilities. Of course, we also know that dining out is more expensive than eating a homemade meal, but there are ways to combat the higher ticket prices if you are willing to be a little flexible. Here are our 5 top ways to score good eats at a reduced price.Continue reading

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Experience the Trail at National Historic Trails Interpretive Center

Located in Casper, Wyoming, the National Historic Trails Interpretive Center is a free museum dedicated to educating visitors on the experiences for those traveling the Oregon Trail during the Westward Migration.  The museum is filled with life-size dioramas showcasing various life events that would have been experienced by travelers. Life was hard, and the displays help relate this to visitors.Continue reading

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See the Sights at Chicago’s Navy Pier

Our last visit to Chicago was eye opening. Our hotel was located just off of Michigan Avenue, which gave us walking access to many great attractions, including Navy Pier. The timing was great, as this was the period where Kansas City was experiencing 100 degree weather. The 90 degree temps in Chicago felt cool in comparison. While our time was limited, we did try to squeeze in as much sight-seeing as possible.

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Chicago Skyscrapers- Towers of Steel and Glass

There is a huge variation between cities in the Midwest. There are lots of small towns, which are based around the old town square format. As you move up to larger cities, you start to see more multi-story buildings. Then you have the Chicago skyscrapers. By the time you get to a city the size of St. Louis or Kansas City, you will find a smattering of skyscrapers dotting the horizon.  While there are similarities between Kansas City and Chicago, there are just as many differences. The one sight in Chicago, that constantly reminded us that we were not in our hometown, was the large saturation of skyscrapers.Continue reading

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Get it and Go at Go Chicken Go

One of my early jobs was as a gas station attendant on 7th Street just north of Central Avenue near downtown KCK. Right across the street from the station was a Go Chicken Go restaurant. This was not a very glamorous job, and it was in the period where they were just beginning to move the operations to being pay before you pump. I spent the bulk of my time sitting in a booth, behind a glass front, taking money and turning on the pumps. Continue reading

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Toast the Day at Holyfield Winery

In the entire state of Kansas there are less than 50 wineries, but that number is probably no surprise. What may surprise you is that located in Basehor is Holyfield Winery, which sits upon 14 acres of fertile Kansas soil. If you leave Kansas City, Kansas traveling west on Highway 40 (State Avenue), the next town you come to will be Basehor, Kansas. With just under 5,000 residents, this city is comprised mostly of residential housing, with a smattering of small restaurants and businesses. Most of these are in place to support the local population, but Holyfield stands out as unique in this sleepy little town. Continue reading

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Cross the Tracks to Fritz’s Railroad Restaurant

On my drive, I was stopped by a train. As I watched the cars roll by, I thought of all of the businesses that have sprouted up, because of the railroads. As my mind wandered, probably the most unusual of them came to me, and I remembered an article I wrote about Fritz’s. This place holds some special memories for me, since I used to visit this restaurant with my father, when he was alive. I hope you all enjoy the read.

There are many cases in life that the original stands out above any and all replicas. How many movies were so good that they created a sequel, and it fell short of our expectations. The original sets the bar that all others will need to attain, if they will be as successful. One of these success stories is Fritz’s Railroad Restaurant. The original location at 32nd & Brown Avenue, was started in 1954 by Fritz and Virginia, after his return from the war. In the mid-60’s they opened a second location at 18th Street & Grandview Blvd. In more recent years additional locations have been added at Crown Center and in Shawnee, Kansas. Continue reading

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