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The Eight Wonders of Kansas Customs Announced

After almost six weeks of voting, the Kansas Sampler Foundation announced the 8 Wonders of Kansas Customs.

In alphabetical order:

Bringing musicians together:
For a decade there’s been a lively jam session at the Emma Chase Cafe in Cottonwood Falls almost every Friday night at 7:30 p.m.

Chanting a school fight song:
The University of Kansas’s (Lawrence) Rock Chalk Jayhawk cheer is one of the best in the nation. Learn about the chant in the student union.

Clicking your heels three times and saying “There’s no place like home”:
Oz attractions in Wamego and Liberal tell the beloved story of the Wizard of Oz.

Commemorating Veterans Day:
An Emporia man helped change Armistice Day into Veterans Day and made Emporia the Founding City of Veterans Day.

Displaying an ethnic handicraft:
Traditional and pop-art Dala Horses can be seen throughout Lindsborg.

Ordering a soda fountain treat:
Go while you can to one of the 38 operating soda fountains left in Kansas.

Riding a carousel:
Ride — and learn about — the famous C.W. Parker carousels in Abilene and Leavenworth.

Using natural material for fencing:
Learn the story of these hardy fence posts at the Post Rock Museum in Lacrosse and see them throughout the Smoky Hills.

Pat Osborne, Blue Rapids Historical Society, representing “Crusin’ Main” -Round Town Square” said, “Thanks to those of you who supported Blue Rapids by vooting, by putting the contest on Facebook and emailing it on to your friends. As a result of being one of the 24 finalists, we have posted an all-weather banner about our customs in Fountain Park and will soon have additional signage directing visitors to the Oldest Roundabout in Kansas.”

 Foundation director Marci Penner said, “This was the closest race we’ve had to date and though it was the hardest to explain, it won my heart. If you go to http://www.8wonders.org and click on pictures of all the 24 finalists, you can read some of the most fascinating and endearing stories and facts about our cultural traditions.”

More than 12,000 votes came from across the state, every state in the union, and from many foreign countries. Each voter had to select eight from the 24 finalists and could only vote three times.

The Customs contest is one in a series. Earlier contests determined the overall 8 Wonders of Kansas and the top 8 in Architecture, Art, Commerce, and Cuisine. Geography is the next contest with public nominations being accepted the month of November. History and People contests will wrap-up the one-time series.

A project of the Inman-based Kansas Sampler Foundation, it is designed to educate the world about what there is to see and do in Kansas, encourage travel, and help Kansans see their state with new eyes.

About Derek Nester

Derek Nester was born and raised in Blue Rapids, and graduated from Valley Heights High School in May of 2000. He attended Cowley College in Arkansas City and Johnson County Community College in Overland Park studying Journalism & Media Communication. After stops at KFRM and KCLY radio in Clay Center, he joined KNDY in 2002 as a board operator and play by play announcer. Derek is now responsible for the digital content of Dierking Communications, Inc. 6 radio stations. In 2005 Derek joined the staff of KCFX radio in Kansas City as a production assistant for the Kansas City Chiefs Radio Network, which airs on 69 radio stations across 9 Midwest states.