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Day #2: Valkommen to Lindsborg

Lindsborg, Kansas
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The welcome starts on the one-lane bridge at the south entrance of Lindsborg. 

People often ask what we do when we first get into a town.  Most often we look for someone that can give us a town overview.  Knowing the convention and visitor's bureau office was busy with preparations for Midsummer's Festival, we got all we needed from the ladies of Small World Gallery.  Thanks Kathy, Jan, Briana, and Twyla!

One starts to get steeped in the colors of Lindsborg when in the Small World Gallery, 127 N. Main.  Just looking at Jim Richardson's racks of notecards makes you happy--and pleased with images of Kansas.  Then the color of Kathy's beads add a different yet stimulating dimension.

The multi-colored delicate glass balls invite a person in to the Courtyard Gallery,
 125 N. Main, a shop selling Kansas art.

The polished wooden chutes, belts and levers at the Smoky Valley Roller Mill (120 Mill at Old Mill Museum) make you feel like you're stepping into a beautiful 3-D picture of rugged function.

Shirley's hands and work table are where those neatly painted Dala horses get their start. (Hemslöjd, 201 N. Main).

Birger Sandzen's thick brushstrokes are just plain rich.  To look at them close up delivers one view.  Stepping back produces quite another perspective, almost as if it is a completely different painting.  (Birger Sandzen Gallery, 401 N. 1st).

You feel like you're swallowing color when you walk into Elizabeth's handwoven artwork shop.  You just want to soak it all in the best you can.

Even the place settings are beautiful, like at the Swedish Country Inn.

Everyone loves the Wild Dala Horses.  Especially the one you can ride.

And, here's the color of fun!  You can rent these quadricycles at the Hemslöjd -- and we plan to do just that next week.

Lindsborg, ERV will be back next week.  A short visit just made us want more.  Can't wait.  See you then.




A caramelized BLT sandwich

Lindsborg, Kansas

The Brick House Grill is located in an old-fashioned Standard filling station at 201 Harrison in Lindsborg.  It's a little crowded because 1) it's small and 2) it's full of satisfied customers.

Among other things, Bob McCall's place has specialty burgers and sandwiches.  The "Sloppy German" is a Reuben burger (no corned beef) topped with ham, Swiss cheese, sauerkraut, sauteed onions with 1000 Island dressing.

I ordered the Brick House BLT.  The description touts the signature bun but I'm telling you it was the bacon, the caramelized bacon.  Each bite was like candy.  When I was done, I was ready for another.  And I would have ordered one but we were coming back in a few hours to order carry-out pizza.

Famous for their red sauce or white sauce specialty hand-tossed crust pizzas, some of the pizza names include "The Thor" and "Viking."  A "Viking" pizza has to be hearty right?  This one features pepperoni, Italian sausage, pork sausage, Canadian bacon, bacon and beef.  We took home half "Crazy Garden" and half "Chicken Parmesan." 

Oh my.  The pizza leftovers were even better the next day (for breakfast).  People drive in from all over for the pizza.

Open daily 11 a.m.-9 p.m. but Tuesday just 11 a.m.-2 p.m.  Pizza available after 4 p.m. and all day Saturday and Sunday.

Try it sometime!

Written by Marci Penner.  We're going to every town in the state to research for a guidebook.  We want to share some information with you now!  This is a project of the Kansas Sampler Foundation.




So much more than a great view: Coronado Heights

Lindsborg, Kansas

Built by the WPA in 1936, the castle sits atop an area called Coronado Heights.  It is believed that Coronado and his party may have been in this area in 1541, thus the name.

Make sure to go in -- and up the stone staircase for a splendid panoramic view of the Smoky Valley below.  At certain times of the year the yucca is in bloom or wheat fields can be seen in their green or golden colors.

On the bottom floor is a big room with two picnic tables.

It's a little musty inside so pick one of the eleven outdoor stone and cement picnic tables.

Each picnic table area comes with its own fireplace!

The area is an adventureland!  There are trails and staircases and interesting graffiti carved in stones.  It's a great place to fly a kite or just lean back and read a book.

Taken from the 8 Wonders of Kansas Geography web site:  The fun of Coronado Heights kept on rolling through the early and mid- 1900s. Locals still talk about their grandparents' breakfasts atop the hill.  Earlier Bethany College students remember their dances (when dancing was forbidden by the institution).  Birger Sandzen hiked there often.  There was at least one attempt to roller skate down the hill.  July 4th band concerts were legendary, and others recall thunderstorm watching, physical training, and old cars and horse-drawn wagons making their way up to the top in improbable feats of engineering.




Doors of Lindsborg

Lindsborg, Kansas
Lindsborg, not only do you have great doors, but great door hardware, too!

You could be the Door Hardware Capital of Kansas!


The door hardware on the left is found at the store, Sarahendepity, 132 1/2 N. Main

The hardware on the right is from the Wild Dala Winery door at 105 N. Main.  Seasons of the Fox Bed and Breakfast has great door hardware, too, as do many others.

See if you can figure out where these doors belong.  Answers at the bottom.










1.  Courtyard Gallery, 125 N. Main
2.  Whitfield Chapel door, 430 N. Washington
3.  Blacksmith Coffee Roastery, 122 N. Main
4.  Swedish Pavillion doors (from the inside), across from 120 Mill
5.  Pay telephone booth door (in front of Blacksmith Coffee Roastery)
6.  Red Barn Studio door, 212 S. Main
7.  Cabin behind the Old Mill, 120 Mill
8.  Bethany Lutheran Church, 320 . Main
9.  Ol' Stuga, 119 S. Main

Come in, to Lindsborg!




Lindsborg's Explorer-y Attractions

Lindsborg, Kansas
As a Kansas Explorer Club member and a guidebook researcher, it's always fun to find new discoveries. Here are some of the explorer-y attractions we found in Lindsborg.

Behind the 1898 Smoky Valley Roller Mill (120 Mill) are stone walls, arches, pillars, and steps. They overlook the Smoky Hill River and the old mill dam. It's was interesting to find such an elaborate backyard to the mill. The stone aren't primarily Dakota sandstone so were they brought to this site?

In Heritage Park across from the Old Mills Museum (120 Mill) you'll find the first McPherson County courthouse built in 1869. A brief history of the county towns is found inside.

Have you seen a Prairie tractor lately? They are huge! Primarily built to bust the prairie sod, these machines were built by a variety of manufacturers, mostlyin the early 1900s, the "teen" years. These gas-powered giants usually weighed ore than six tons. Located in the exhibit building in Heritage Park, this machine dwarfs all the others.

It appears to be a "captured" rock. Located beside the roller mill, there is no interpretive sign...just a lonely Dakota sandstone rock.

In Swensson Park (400 N. Main) is a tree with an elaborate fence around it. This tree has a story. Does anybody know what it is?

Ride your bicycle or w
alk this 2.5 Valkommen Trail. Along the way you'll find signs about local attractions, benches, and "beauty spots." At the south end of the trail is my favorite part where the old Missouri-Pacific and Union Pacific bridge has been converted for trail use! One can find the name "Carnegie" stamped on most of the steel beams.

Was this drinking fountain a WPA project? It's located in Swensson Park (400 N. Main). It still works, too!

An abandoned pond with a fountain in the middle conjures up a vision of something exquisite decades ago. Was it a fish pond? Did the ducks enjoy it, too?

A time capsule marker is situated in front of the pond.

The plaque states that Lindsborg's Lutheran Augustana Synod was established on this site in June 1892.

The plaque reveals that this was where the home of Dr. C.A. Swensson, founder and president of Bethany College was located. Perhaps the fish pond was behind his house?

There are two outdoor chess boards at the playground in Swensson Park!

Architectural points-of-interest are found throughout the streets of Lindsborg. But this one really gets your attention. It's just a little chapel just south of 430 N. Washington.

Artist John Whitfield incorporated stained glass, antique tiles, old bells, and other intricacies. It's OK to enter through the gate. Just be sure to leave it as you found it.

The questions posed here will be solved by the time the guidebook comes out in 2015. In the meantime, finding the answers is part of the fun and richness of exploring.

Written by Marci Penner.  We're going to every town in the state to research for a guidebook.  We want to share some information with you now!  This is a project of the Kansas Sampler Foundation.