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Olathe, Kansas

Olathe, Kansas

Olathe has always been an important destination - just as it is today. Among its earliest visitors were those who traveled the Santa Fe Trail, whether they were turn-of-the-century freighters ferrying cargo to the Southwest, farm families on the move to Oregon, or stagecoach travelers stopping at Mahaffie Stagecoach Stop and Farm while making their way west.

The city was founded in 1857 on land covered with verbena and other wild flowers. Its name is derived from the Shawnee Indian word for "beautiful" and is pronounced "o-LAY-tha." Olathe played a vital role in Western expansion as the site where three historic trails - the Santa Fe, Oregon, and California trails - converged.

As a free state, Olathe was the scene of Civil War clashes and a raid by the notorious border ruffian William Quantrill and his followers. After the Civil War, businesses opened, churches and cultural centers were built, and the community flourished.

Olathe is the home of the cowboy boot; the Hyer family designed, manufactured, and sold the very first cowboy boot and had as clients some very famous cowboys, including Will Rogers, Tom Mix, and many others!

The Naval Air Station operated in Olathe from 1942 through 1970 on the site of the current New Century Air Center.

Olathe has grown by leaps and bounds over the last several decades and evolved into the dynamic community it is today. A 60-square-mile city, Olathe serves as the county seat of Johnson County - one of the most affluent counties in the country.

With a population of 105,000 people, Olathe is one of the fastest growing cities in metropolitan Kansas City and the state, but it retains a hometown flavor with a quality of life second to none. Olathe offers historic sites, including Mahaffie Stagecoach Stop and Farm, more than 800 great hotel rooms, over 100 restaurants, the state's largest outlet mall, paintball, indoor racing cars, and more!

Attractions and Upcoming Events


The Prairie Center

The rich natural history of Kansas has been preserved with 300 acres of native tall grass prairie, woodlands and creeks. The diverse biomes comprise virgin tallgrass prairie, reseeded tallgrass prairie, riparian woodlands, and wetland areas. The center is a suburban island that was farmed until 1968

Olathe, KS Nature Centers

William J. Mara Museum - KS School for the Deaf

The Kansas State School for the Deaf is the oldest state educational institution in the State of Kansas. The School was founded by Philip A. Emery, a deaf man who had been a teacher at the Indiana School for the Deaf from 1854 to 1860

Olathe, KS Museums

Mahaffie Stagecoach Stop and Farm

J.B. Mahaffie purchased a 160-acre tract of ground 1-mile north of the town of Olathe, Kansas along the Santa Fe Trail in 1857. In 1863, J.B. and his wife, Lucinda Mahaffie, contracted to run a stagecoach stop. Serving meals in their cellar, the Mahaffies operated their business until around 1870

Olathe, KS Museums

Buddy Rogers & Family's Playhouse

The Olathe Community Theatre Association presents six live theatrical productions a season, ranging from progressive, first-run fare to standard classics, including one musical and a children's theater production in June. Our building was established by the Covenant Church in 1870

Olathe, KS Theatres

Things to do near Olathe, KS

Lakeside Hills Golf Course

Course Access: PublicHoles: 18Reserve Advance Tee Times: 4 days...

Verizon Wireless Amphitheater

This outdoor concert facility offers a great concert-going experience. No matter where you're sitting. From the lush lawn ...

First Baptist Church of Bethel

First Baptist Church of Bethel is a church organized in 1872. In the early day they worshiped inside the old Pomeroy school h...

Irene B French Community Center

The Irene B French Community Center is located in a renovated historic school building that was once the home the Merriam Gra...