Get Into Dodge…City!

Posted by on June 5, 2018

We pulled out of Missouri State Fairgrounds at 8:49 on Thursday…in the rain.  Thankfully, it wasn’t raining hard…just sprinkling so we didn’t get soaked while we hitched up.  There were several other vendors that pulled out ahead of us too.

Thankfully, by the time we passed by Kansas City the sky had cleared up and it was blue skies and sun…and it stayed that way for the remainder of our drive.

We stopped in Emporia, Kansas for lunch at Braum’s.  We were out of bacon and decided to multi-task…picked up some bacon and had lunch too!

After our lunch stop we only had about 85 miles left to travel and we made it to our overnight stop, Spring Lake Resort, in Halstead, Kansas about 2:45 pm.  A pretty little campground with lots of trees, a couple of ponds and pool and very friendly staff.

Nice cuddly spot for the night.

We hadn’t planned to unhitch but the ground was a bit to unlevel so we unhitched and pull just far enough out of the way to level the coach.  Michael plugged in the power and we went inside, let out the slides and were relaxing in our recliners watching Survivor by 3:15 pm.

We vegged out most of the rest of they day (did a little work here and there) and had leftover Amish Haystacks for dinner.

Friday morning we weren’t in any hurry as we only had 150 or so miles to travel.  I think we ended up pulling out shortly after 9:00 am and after an uneventful drive with one stop for fuel along the way we arrived at the Water Sports RV Park in Dodge City, Kansas just after noon.

America’s Heartland as seen from the road

I had wanted to stay at the Gunsmoke RV Park but when I finally got around to making reservations they were booked.  We even tried again today and found that they still had no room at the inn.

The park here isn’t much too look at…kinda old and blah but after going inside to check in I was very impressed with the two employees we encountered…very friendly and helpful.  Plus, the bathroom was very clean, which is a huge plus.

We got unhitched and set up as quickly as possible (omitting setting up the satellite dish) and then went inside to huddle in the air conditioning as it was hot (90+)…and getting hotter.

Los Sombreros…pretty much had the place to ourselves.

We decided to get some Mexican food for dinner (I’d been dreaming of the fajitas I had the other night) and the young lady at the office had recommended Los Sombreros which was about 3 miles away.

We ordered the Los Panchos Fajitas (chicken, beef & shrimp) for two and enjoyed it very much.  Once again, the shrimp was delicious.  We also shared some fried ice cream for dessert but I wasn’t very impressed with it.

When we went out for dinner about 3:30 pm the temperature was 101 and by the time we came out of the restaurant an hour or so later it was 103!  Thankfully, the humidity was only at about 30% which helped some and it was quite windy as well.

We made a stop at the local Walmart to pick up groceries to last us about a week or so so we won’t have to run to the store while we’re at the Heartland rally next week.

I declared a ‘jammie day’ on Saturday and enjoyed every second of lounging in my nightgown.  I even took a muscle relaxer the night before and slept until 8:30…a huge rarity for me!

We both worked off and on throughout the day as it was a busier Saturday than normal.  Michael even got a chance to go through some of the things we packed up from the Escapade that we’ll want to use again at our vendor booth at the Heartland Rally in Pueblo next week.

The distillery in the background and the cowboy on the right.

Sunday we spent the day in downtown Dodge City checking out various sites.  The first two stops were Roadside America finds.  The first was the ‘oldest cowboy in Dodge City‘ which is a statue on Boot Hill in front of the Boot Hill Distillery.  The statue was erected in 1928 by a dentist who created it out of dental plaster!

Big ol’ sun dials!

Next we stopped by the Time Zone Sun Dials…which were actually pretty cool.  They’re HUGE…about 25 feet wide by about 12 or 14 feet high.  There are two…one set to Mountain time and one set to Central time and they actually work!  The unfortunate thing was that they were an hour off due to Daylight Savings Time.  Nonetheless…it was pretty cool.

Playin’ with Doc Holliday!

We also stopped and played some poker with Doc Holliday…but he was too good for us (plus he pulled a gun!) and we lost everything we had!  I ‘guess he lives up to his ‘gunfight at OK Corral’ reputation!

Burt Reynolds was in Gunsmoke…do you remember?

Dodge City has its own Walk of Fame…or rather…Trail of Fame.  The trail of fame honors real life ‘heroes’ of Dodge City (Wyatt Earp, Doc Holliday, etc) as well as many actors (James Arness, Amanda Blake, etc) from the TV show Gunsmoke as well as other popular western movies and TV shows.

We walked the streets of Dodge City, finding the plaques for each of the ‘heroes’, which we imbedded in the sidewalk.  It was actually nice walk…around town.  It took us about an hour, though we skipped about 5 that were off the beaten path.

We spent the remainder of the day and evening at Boot Hill.  I’d purchased ‘All in One’ Tickets for $35 that got us admission to the Boot Hill Museum, the famous Gunfight, dinner and Miss Kitty’s Variety Show at the Long Branch Saloon.

A display of what a Gamblers gun may have looked like.

We wandered through the museum which is kind of indoors (life of the prairie people & various other exhibits) and outdoors (cemetery, Victorian home, school-house, church, etc).  There is a ‘general store’ where you can buy some trinkets if you choose.

Of course, the Long Branch Saloon is open for business.  We stopped for a Sarsaparilla and a Bud Light and enjoyed listening to the piano player play requested songs as well as ones of his own choosing.

Fun to watch these young ladies!

We even watched Miss Kitty’s Variety Show while sitting front and center that evening.  Miss Kitty had a wonderful voice and the four young dances did some great dancing…they even did the CanCan…wow..that’s one energetic dance!

The two young bartenders sang and were quite the Comedians themselves.  The show lasted about an hour (30 minutes after closing time and it turned out to be a nice way to end the evening.

Good to find new friends on the road!

As we were waiting for the ‘dining hall’ to open for dinner we had a group of four people walk up to us and call us by name and say something about “Heartland”.  We were quite taken back as we had no idea who they were…but somehow they knew us.  I checked both of our shirts thinking that maybe we were wearing Heartland shirts…we weren’t.

Come to find out they saw our truck (with Performance Trailer Braking on it) out in the parking lot and they were at the Stone Mountain, Georgia rally…so they had an advantage over us!  They were just passing through Dodge City for an overnight on the way to Pueblo too.

Yummy stuff!

They were joined by another couple (making it 3 couples) and invited us to sit with them for dinner.  We accepted and enjoyed getting to know all of them.  They’re all from the Florida/Georgia area and are traveling together this summer.

Dinner was thinly sliced beef brisket, creamed corn, fried potatoes, cole slaw and biscuits…and apple crisp for dessert.  Everything was very good and there was plenty left over that those that still hadn’t had their fill could go up and get some more.

Guns Blazin’!

After dinner it was time for some gun slingin’!  Everyone sat at the picnic table provided and waited for the event to begin.  Five cowboys (who’d rustled some cattle) came into town and were asked to leave their guns by the water well as no guns are allowed in Dodge City.

They agreed but when they heard that the town sheriff was going to check their cattle…that didn’t sit well and they formed a plan to get their guns back…which led to a gun fight.    Wow!  It was over in a matter of minutes and there was ‘gun smoke’ (ha!) everywhere.  All five cowboys were killed along with a deputy and one of the saloon girls.

It was a fun way to spend our last day in Dodge…but we were ready to…’Get Outta Dodge’!

Next up:  Heartland Regional Rally in Pueblo, Colorado.



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