Sunday, May 23, 2010

Kansas Halls of Fame

“Success means doing the best we can with what we have. Success is the doing, not the getting; in the trying, not the triumph. Success is a personal standard, reaching for the highest that is in us, becoming all that we can be.”
~Zig Ziglar~

Success is often the goal that drives the American dream. However one wishes to define the word many of us strive to have a lasting effect in some small way on the world around us or perhaps just within ourselves believing that this country of ours offers that possibility.

Americans love to celebrate successes. We recognize the deeds of others in many fields of interest touting these triumphs in museums, schools and notably "halls of fame."

The list below covers many of the halls of fame in Kansas. Within our state we have places that honor individuals and groups who have stood out within a profession, area of interest or activity at the state or national level. We also have halls of fame which promote animals and plantlife!
We've shied away from local and individual school halls of fame in this list knowing that that list is much longer than the space we've set out for these blogs. If we've missed a hall of fame in Kansas that you're aware of contact us and let us know via the comment box at the bottom of this blog. Don't forget to include an address and possible website! We'll determine what to include and add more halls of fame to the list.


Agricultural Hall of Fame
Bonner Springs
(Educates society on the historical and present value of American agriculture and honors leadership in Agri-Business and Academia by providing education, information, experience and recognition)

Greyhound Hall of Fame
(Devoted to greyhound breeding, racing, and the history of the sport)

Highbanks Hall of Fame
(Celebrates national midget auto racing and auto racing drivers)

Teachers Hall of Fame
(Recognizes and honors exceptional career teachers, encourages excellence in teaching, and preserves the rich heritage of the teaching profession in the United States)

They Also Ran Gallery
(Honors presidential candidates who were defeated but not forgotten)


Kansas Aviation Hall of Fame
(Created to preserve the memory of outstanding aviation contributions by citizens of the State of Kansas)

Kansas Baseball Hall of Fame
(Honors baseball greats from Kansas)

Kansas Broadcasting Hall of Fame
(Honors those who have worked in the broadcasting business recognizing substantial contributions to broadcasting in the state/nation. Individual broadcasters may be Kansas natives and have made contributions in other states or at the national level. Individuals who are not Kansas natives who have worked in Kansas broadcasting are also recognized)

Kansas Business Hall of Fame
(recognizes business leaders, who through their high standards of ethics, have added to the prestige and growth of Kansas. By identifying outstanding examples of business leadership, the Hall of Fame shares with high school and college students and adults these stories of success and innovation through representative displays. The Hall of Fame creates an awareness of appreciation of Kansas' rich heritage of business leadership)

Kansas Cowboy Hall of Fame
Dodge City
(Preserves and honors the life of the Kansas cowboy. The five inductees each year are honored for their outstanding contribution to the western heritage lifestyle, past and present, and to the preservation of the cowboy culture. The five categories are Rancher/Cattleman, Cowboy Entertainer, Cowboy Historian, Working cowboy, and Rodeo Cowboy)

Kansas Golf Hall of Fame
(Honors Kansas men and women, amateurs and professionals, who have made outstanding contributions to the game of golf)

Kansas Music Hall of Fame
(Recognizes and honors performers and others who have made significant contributions to the musical history of the state of Kansas and the greater Kansas City Metropolitan Area. The Hall of Fame endeavors to promote public interest in the musicians of the past and encourage those of the present and future)

Kansas National Guard Hall of Fame
(Commemorates and recognizes individuals who have served in the Kansas National Guard or it's predecessor, Kansas State Militia, who have made a significant contribution to the National Guard achievements, tradition, or history)

Kansas Newspaper Hall of Fame
(An honor roll of journalists who have made outstanding contributions to the profession and to Kansas)

Kansas Oil Gallery
El Dorado (Museum)
(Honors those men and women who have made contributions to Kansas’ oil heritage)

Kansas Poker Hall of Fame
(Meet the legends of Kansas poker history)

Kansas Sports Hall of Fame
(Honors Kansans who have excelled in athletics)

Kansas State High School Activities Assn Hall of Fame
(Recognizes individuals who have contributed their time and talent to their school, community and/or state through secondary school activities)

Kansas Teachers Hall of Fame
Dodge City
(Dedicated to the early and present day teachers who have devoted their lives to the profession of teaching)

Kansas Wheat Hall of Fame
(The Kansas Wheat Hall of Fame is composed of the State's most popular wheat varieties. These varieties have demonstrated good staying power, having been grown on more than 1 % of the State's acreage at least 20 years. They also have contributed greatly to the Kansas economy and to the farm communities where they were grown)

Article by: Bill Sowers
(My thanks to Rhonda Machlan for suggesting this topic and supplying the links!)
Please use the "Comments" link below for questions and comments.

Friday, May 7, 2010

The Rock Band, Kansas

This week we will rise above the noise and confusion, just to get a glimpse beyond this illusion... And for those of you who are sitting there wondering just what the heck I'm writing about, carry on my wayward son (or daughter) and keep reading!

Do an Internet search for the word, "Kansas," and you'll find hits for the state of Kansas and Kansas City along with many sites about the rock band, Kansas. The band and its name have a history going back 40 years. A band formed with the name, Kansas, by Topekans, Dave Hope, Phil Ehart and Kerry Livgren in 1970 folded, reformed and merged with different names and members before a newly formed band was brought together in 1973 with the name, Kansas, affixed permanently. Kansas band members by then were Phil Ehart, Dave Hope, Kerry Livgren, Robbie Steinhardt, Steve Walsh and Rich Williams.

With the release of their first major album, "Kansas," in 1974 Kansas moved into the national music spotlight as a progressive rock band, offering music which combined rock interwoven with classic symphonic tones and complex arrangements. Years later Kansas is still entertaining crowds of new and old fans with its distinctive, musical style and rich, reflective lyrics.

Enthusiastic followers known as "wheatheads" travel great distances to attend Kansas concerts such as the sold out January, 2008, performance at the Topeka Performing Arts Center. The band rocked the house that night with an assist from the Topeka Symphony Orchestra. Reviewer Bill Blankenship from the Topeka Capital-Journal commented after the concert, "More often than not, Kansas performs opuses, not songs. They are rich and textured and far too long for radio. They have movements, tempo changes, counterpoint and other symphonic forms that go well beyond the verse-chorus 'Roll Over Beethoven' roots of rock."

So let's sit back, pop in a CD and listen to some great music while perusing information on a band that named itself after a state.

Kansas, the Official Website
Includes information on:
  • Current Band Members
  • History
  • Multimedia
  • News and Reviews

    Some Current* & Former Band Members' Websites
  • Phil Ehart* (Wikipedia)
  • John Elefante
  • Billy Greer*
  • David Hope (Wikipedia)
  • Kerry Livgren
  • Steve Morse
  • David Ragsdale*
  • Robby Steinhardt (Wikipedia)
  • Steve Walsh*
  • Richard Williams*

  • Official website
  • MusicMoz
  • Wikipedia
  • Billboard Charts and Awards

    Fan Clubs
  • People of the South Wind (POTSW)

    Other Resources
  • Kerry Livgren Interview (2006)
  • Rich Williams Interview (2008)
  • Billy Greer Interview (2001)
  • Phil Ehart Interview
  • Song Lyrics (Rock Lyrics)
  • 1kansasfan has a large array of Kansas videos on YouTube

  • Kansas Platinum Record (Kansas State Historical Society)
  • A Review of the Kansas concert with the Washburn Symphony Orchestra held February 10, 2009 in Topeka. The concert was later released on DVD titled "There's Know Place Like Home," and shown on KTWU Public Television.
  • Resources found in the ATLAS online catalog (Includes State Library of Kansas holdings)

    Article contact: Bill Sowers
    (My thanks to Cindy Roupe for suggesting this topic)