In 1910, Engine House No. 6 boasted space to accommodate four firefighters, two horses, and a carriage, which was the best way to reach the scene of a fire quickly. By 1918, though, the horses had retired, giving up their stall space and beloved supply of carrots to a brand-new fire truck. The move was part of Wichita's initiative to become the first all-mechanized fire department in the nation.
The neighborhood station served until 1953, when its half-a-century-old amenities proved too obsolete to serve the needs of modern firefighters. Still, the building represented an interesting slice of history, so in 1993, a group of local citizens and firefighters teamed up to restore the place and transform it into the Kansas Firefighters Museum.
Today, the museum recounts the above story and tells other local firefighting tales through various exhibits. They also offer fire camps, which are designed to give youth a hands-on look into the daily life of a firefighter, with participation and activity discussions geared to help attendees determine if firefighting may be their profession of choice. The museum's staff of volunteers also pride themselves on creating a great firefighter calendar full of hunky men and women wearing hard hats or wielding hoses. Proceeds go to the Coats for Kids program, which provides coats for hundreds of children in Kansas each year.
1300 S Broadway St
Wichita, KS, US
316-264-5990No deal available