Today we had our Kansas Sampler Foundation board meeting in Piqua, home of board member Shelia Lampe and her husband Don.
Directions to her house were "turn right after you pass the water office and then turn left at the Farm Store." In three blocks you go from the west end of town to the east.
After the board meeting, which featured Shelia's homemade soups, we all went down to the water office where they have the Buster Keaton museum. Judy, the water office administrator was still at work but if she hadn't been Shelia had an extra key.
In 1895, Buster Keaton's parents were touring with Houdini and the troupe had stopped in Piqua for a performance. But the encore of their stop was that Mrs. Keaton delivered her baby in a house (that belonged to Don's great grandmother)! The museum room has photos, newspaper clips, and play bills telling about the life and career of Buster Keaton. The water office, and thus the museum, is open Monday-Friday 8 a.m.-1 p.m. It's a classic Explorer stop.
We all could have continued our Explorer adventure by going over to the 1922 St. Martin's Church to help clean but we left Shelia to do that without us. The church is now only open for weddings and special mass -- like for Christmas. Because so many people come back for the Christmas mass the townspeople (well, the women) want the church looking spic and span. Today was the designated cleaning day. Judy, from the water office, had already headed over to clean before we left the museum. (Christmas mass is 9 p.m. on Christmas Eve).
Had we stayed, we could have enjoyed a cold beverage and a terrific chicken fried steak at the Silverado bar and grill before we left town.
Spend some time in Piqua and it'll help you "Get Kansas!"
KE #2 Marci Penner