When autumn's crisp breezes carry October into Kansas, Mr. Gourdman's Pumpkin Patch swings open its gates to help families celebrate the season with pumpkin picking, horseback rides, and an assortment of other fall-related activities. Visitors can simply soak in the scenery or take on some of the property's challenges, including a hay maze and an unofficial grass-eating contest against Mr. Gourdman's donkey, Leroy. During breaks, a picnic area lets groups gather around snacks from their own cooler, and an arts-and-crafts stand doles out keepsakes with which to remember the day.
At the Museum of World Treasures, a team of curators and historians gather artifacts from around the world to nourish the knowledge-hungry brains of families and students. Since opening in 2001, the diverse collection has grown to encompass three floors of the museum’s renovated warehouse location. Skeletons of dinosaurs loom over visitors in the fossil gallery, and an authentic Civil War cannon stands vigilant among the museum’s military exhibits, which span from the Revolutionary War to the Vietnam War. A plethora of interactive and historical displays also allow visitors to witness original footage from the discovery of the Titanic and feel humbled in the presence of signatures from every American president, including those not yet born.The museum is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday–Saturday and from noon to 5 p.m. Sunday. Museum members can capitalize on myriad benefits, including discounts on educational programs and invitations to special events.
Built within the 1935 art-deco-styled Wichita Municipal Airport, the Kansas Aviation Museum houses an eclectic array of historic aircraft and artifacts. The museum boasts around 40 historically significant aircraft, including the Beech Starship, Boeing B-52 Stratofortress, and the KC-135E, the first plane to break the smell barrier. Landlubbers with a passion for planes can study their evolution, from the earliest aircraft engines all the way to the latest jet turbines; inspect an Allison J-35 off a 1948 Republic F-84C Thunderjet or marvel at the museum's oldest engine, a pre-WWI four-cylinder Kemp.
Botanica's 9.5-acre plant paradise is divided into more than 20 meticulously designed gardens, including a rose garden for contemplating romance and a wildflower meadow for carefree frolicking. More than 3,600 species of plants are artfully arranged around calming streams, flowing waterfalls, and sculptures. Stop by the sensory garden to touch, smell, and telepathically understand plants' thoughts about hot dogs. Or, head to Botanica's 2,900-square-foot enclosed butterfly house, where the winged beauties flutter freely among a vibrant collection of pansies (through September).
The animal-loving owners of Tanganyika Wildlife Park know that in order to save endangered animals, humans must feel a strong connection to them. It is the park’s mission to foster this connection by putting visitors in close contact with its rare animals. Visitors can gaze at cheetahs and red pandas and feed reticulated giraffes and African spur-thighed tortoises, which are best known for their role in slow-motion Westerns. The park also safeguards endangered animals from extinction by breeding species such as clouded leopards and amur leopards.
Since 1980, Village Tours and Travel's experienced staff of tour-bus whisperers has whisked Wichitans away to sight-seeing destinations across the country. Roll around in a field of four-leaf clovers and horseshoes before boarding a coach bus and embarking on a 10-hour visit of the racecourse and casino at Remington Park Racing Casino, which is just outside Oklahoma City. Pick-up is at 9:30 a.m. on May 15 at the Wichita office of Village Tours, and drop-off is at the same location at 7:30 p.m. that night. With $10 of casino play, even the risk averse can have a cordial conversation with Lady Luck at the tables, slots, or bottomless well. Touring folk also receive reserved seats at the track for watching live horse races at their leisure anytime throughout their stay. Meals are not included with this Groupon, but Remington Park offers a variety of options, including a buffet, snack bar, and a gourmet meal at the Silk Dining Room.