I went to Atchison, KS for between 6/28 and 6/29. There was a bike race called "Amelia Earhart Ride"
Place Stayed: Atchison Motor Inn ($40.25 including tax)
Comment on this motel
There was a very unfortunate thing about this motel. When I checked in, they swiped the card but the machine stopped printing the paper at middle but it was approved. Next morning when I check out, they swiped my card again but I reminded about the incident last night and told them not to charge me twice. They acknowledged the issue so I left. However, they charged both transactions and I have contacted them twice on 7/2 and 7/11. While they promised that the manager will give me a call back, they did not. I even contacted Atchison Chamber of Commerce and they told me that they called the manager. I still have not got any call or money back. I do not recommend this place to stay.
- Paolucci's - An Italian Restaurant
- Time Out Restaurant - A restaurant in front of the Atchison Motor Inn
- MacDonald's (Lunch) - (AKA "Junk Food") Fast Food Restaurant
Before I leave my room, I checked the weather on the internet. I have seen a system of storm crossing the Eastern Kansas to SE direction, so I could know it is going to be stormy on the road between Wichita and Emporia.
I left my apartment at 10:00am, I could tell from the sky that I will have some rain on the way... I stopped at a gas station to get some water at 21st and Rock. I started to see some rain drop by the time. I kept driving to East to I-35 turnpike's Andover toll station (I could used one at E. Kellogg but it will cost me a bit more). As soon as I am on the highway, the rain started.
Heavy rain caused everybody to slow down... I was driving without slowing down but I could feel my wheels were hydroplaning often and it was not a good feeling. Sometimes the rain was so heavy and the road gets flooded, so the traffic was going about 40mph at certain places.
By the time when I get to Emporia, everything was just fine! I took break at Emporia rest area for a while around 11:30am (Meaning it took me 1:30 to get there, usually I can drive in about 55 minutes so you can see how slow I was).
I get to Topeka around 12:00pm, exited the turnpike at Exit 182, hoping to get on the state road #4 or US59, but somehow I ended up heading east. I was driving on Federal Road 24, and I was trying to get on the US59 before reaching to the Lawrence. However, I missed the turn because of the construction nearby the intersection... so I ended up going to Lawrence! (I have seen the KU for the first time)
Well, I finally got to Atchison, KS at 1:50pm. Miles driven: 217
Atchison (click for the official website) is a town consist of 11,000 people, located right by the Missouri River where US59 and US73 intersect. There is a Wal-Mart (and also a similar store called "Country Mart" right next to it), Pizza Hut, Sears, YMCA, Red Cross, a small movie theater (Showing the Hulk, and Charlie's Angeles 2), Long John Silver, KFC, Wendy's, MacDonald's, Texaco gas station, Chevy and Chrysler dealers, Comfort Inn and so on. So I guess this town has pretty much things needed.
The downtown has a small mall, and the town has many old houses. Maybe because I got there on Saturday, there weren't many people around, the parking lots were almost empty). During a tour to see many old houses here, I see yellow ribbons, American flags everywhere, so it is a small good old patriotic town then...
View of Atchison from a bridge overpass looking to the north. (If you see two identical minivans on the picture, it's due to the combination process)
Historic Building Tour
At Santa Fe Depot, there is a visitor information center, as well as a historical museum in the same building and a train museum right next to it. The ATSF railroad company (ATSF stand for Atchison, Topeka, Santa Fe) must have been here.
There are 22 of them on a catalog I got at the visitor's information center so here are the all of the buildings. There is a trolley bus tour but I am not sure how much you need to pay for it. When I see it, it did not even stop at those houses.
1. Santa Fe Depot
200 S. 10th St. (Where the bike race starts...)
This used to be a train station, I believe. There is a visitor center, and Atchison Historical Museum, there are also a train museum right next to it so you can spend about half hour here. If you get a chance, please sign the guest book!
2. Pease Home
203 N. 2nd St.
3. Amelia Earhart Birthplace Museum (official homepage available)
223 N. Terrace
This is the house where Amelia spent her childhood days. This is locally maintained and owned by the Ninety-Nine club (a pilot association for ONLY female, yes, no guys). The tour book says it is located right by the Missouri River and on top of the hill. I think they are right. I have a panoramic picture below... A gift shop inside. Since I was a student, I get in for $2.00
4. Howard Home
305 N. Terrace
5. Muchnic Art Gallery
704 N. 4th St.
6. J. P. Brown home
805 N. 4th St.
7. B. P. Waggener home
819 N. 4th St.
8. St. Benedict's Parish Church
1001 N. 2nd St
There was a wedding ceremony going on when I get there. The trolley bus is used as a limousine, I guess... (Does anybody want to open a limo biz here?) It's cool to hear the bell rings. I like that kind of wedding too.
9. Ferrell Hall
(Inside of Benedictine College, by the way they have a magnificent looking cafeteria. I am not sure for the taste though...)
10. St. Benedict's Abbey Church
1020 N. 2nd St
11. E. W. Howe home
117 N. 3rd St
12. Baker home
823 N. 5th St.
13. Evah C. Cray Historical Home Museum
805 N. 5th St.
14. Drury-Pennell home
519 N. 5th St.
15. R. A. Park home
517 Parllel St.
16. Atchison County Courthouse
425 N. 5th
This building is still used today.
17.Atchison Post Office
7th St. and Kansas Ave.
This building is still used today. It was closed since I was here over the weekend.
18. Harwl house
1103 Atchison St.
1301 Kansas Ave.
I think they were working on some kind of restoration project that time I stopped by. (The guys looked at me like a stranger.. Yes, I am a stranger but never seen Asian before?)
20. St. Cecilia Hall
801 S. 8th St.
21. Mount St. Scholastica Convert
801 S. 8th St.
22. Trinity Episcopal Church
500 S. 5th St.
The bike race was a part of Kansas Survival Series 2003, and you get to pick 35, 65 or 100 miles in this one. Since I have never tried any races before, I simply picked the shortest one, 35 miles.
I needed to eat something Italian (for good spaghetti!). This restaurant is called "Paolucci's" and been here for a long time. I had a plate called "Taste of Italy" for $7.50, coming with choice of soup or salad and some slices of bread. The spaghetti which was covered with meat sauce, a meatball and a Italian sausage. The bread and the sauce had very good flavor and I liked it. If I get to stay in Kansas, this is definitely one of the place I will go to eat.
Me at the START
On the race day, it was raining over night, and some part of the town have lost the power... I cannot imagine such things in Wichita though... The course was consisted of many rolling hills. It was very hard for people like me who train in a flat place like Wichita. They have organized the race well. I could use portable restrooms if I needed, stations (called SAG) which can perform small repairs, and of course the water and snacks (Bananas, Apples and my favorite, Fig Newtons!). I had a good time riding the whole 35 miles. It was good!
Atchison Rail Museum
Atchison used to have a company called ATSF (Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe) Railway Company. There is an outdoor museum shows some trains. You can just go across the fence but it would be nice to drop some dollars in a donation box.
This train is a 2+8 configuration and I believe this one can still move. The engine itself is converted to run with diesel fuel.
MISSOURI PACIFIC #121175 EAGLE MERCHANDISE CAR
International Forest of Friendship
Amelia Earhart was one of heroine I am admired of for long time. She has set many records (well they were broken by other women by now). She was featured on Cosmopolitan Magazine once.
A statue of Amelia Earhart
A stone dedicated for the Columbia Crew
Trees - there are many trees from all states and countries.
Click here to the map of the park listing all the trees
Moon Tree, the seed was sent with Apollo Spacecraft
Sign at base of the Moon Tree, it says "Ad Astra Per Aspara", the same motto as the State of Kansas
Plates - Names of famous people I know of.
The first India born astronaut who died in the Columbia accident
and Earhart herself
Tree from Kansas (a Cotton Wood?)
Tree from Japan (Katsura Cherry)
Going back to Wichita
I left the international forest of friendship at 2:50pm, I drove back to Wichita without stopping anywhere. I got back home at 6:40pm. It rained again just a little but not so bad. Miles driven: 233miles
Last updated on 2003/07/06
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