While visiting Topeka, come and learn more about Shawnee County history at the Topeka and Shawnee County Public Library. The major urban library has a collection of over 450,000 books and serves more than 85,000 registered borrowers. It also has the distinction of being home to the oldest permanent collection of public art in the city. Currently, the library is expanding to add 100,000 square feet. It is being designed by world famous architect Michael Graves. For more information call (785) 233-2040.
Washburn University, located in Topeka, is the only municipal university in the nation. With an attractive and modern campus, the university is home to many special events, festivals and concerts. (785) 231-1010.
If you're looking for adventure, look no further! Lake Shawnee has everything under the sun-- hiking, camping, fishing, boating. With 410 surface acres of water, it is home to every kind of water sport you could want. In addition, this beautiful area on the southeast edge of Topeka is a game sanctuary for water fowl and other animals. Picnic and observation area are located along eight miles of shoreline. All-in-all, the 1,110 acre park is one of the finest recreational centers in the Midwest. (785) 267-1156.
Shawnee North Community Park Nature Trail is a 2.2 mile trail that crosses Indian Creek, winding through native grasses, trees, and flowers. Open year-round. (785) 286-0676.
Don't miss out on historic Lecompton! The city, just east of Shawnee County on old 24 highway, was founded in 1854 and served as the permanent and only official capital of Kansas territory until Topeka became the state capitol in 1861. Today its the location of the territorial Capital-Lane Museum and Constitution Hall. The museum is operated by the Lecompton Historical Society and is open 11a.m. to 4p.m. Wednesday through Saturday and 1p.m. to 5p.m. Sunday. (785) 887-6148 or (785) 887-6285. Constitution Hall: (785) 887-6520.
Explore Shawnee County
Looking for a scenic drive? View beautiful Victorian homes of the late 1800s situated along brick streets where islands of greenery circle each intersection point in the National Historic District known as Potwin Place. Each Christmas, special decorations can be viewed.Topeka, KS Tours
See a still functioning General Store that was built in 1898 by Alfred Sage, Innkeeper at the 1878 Sage Inn. Old store offers homecooked meals and groceries. Known for having the best homemade pie in this part of Kansas, baked fresh daily by 80+ year old Norma!Dover, KS Historic Buildings
Much more than a collection of aircraft, Combat Air Museum houses a wide variety of military and aviation oriented memorabilia, ranging in time from the first World War to the space shuttle program. There are approximately 30 aircraft on display with multiple additional static displays.Topeka, KS Museums
The Topeka Zoological Park occupies a beautiful setting in Gage Park. Intimate views of nearly 400 animals from all over the world add to the reputation of the Topeka Zoo as one of the nation's finest small zoos. Major exhibits include Hill's Black Bear Woods, Animals and Man (Topeka, KS Zoos
On October 26, 1992, Congress passed Public Law 102-525 establishing Brown v. Board of Education National Historic Site to commemorate the landmark Supreme Court decision aimed at ending segregation in public schools. Monroe Elementary School (17th & Monroe), and Sumner Elementary School (330Topeka, KS National Parks
The French-Norman style house which was built by Frank P. MacLennan in 1928, is home to the governor of Kansas. It is the focal point of a 200-acre estate overlooking the Kansas river. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the estate features several ponds and hiking trails.Topeka, KS Famous Homes
"You're living history" when you visit the Kansas History Center. An 1880 Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe Railway locomotive, full-sized Cheyenne tipi, Wichita grass lodge, covered wagon, and log house are just a few of the many features in the Main Gallery at the Museum of History.Topeka, KS Museums
Lake Shawnee is a man-made, 411-acre lake offering fishing, boating, sailing and swimming. Within the 1,600-acre park surrounding the lake are foot trails, fish hatcheries (for stocking the lake), a golf course, a marina, tennis courts, shelter houses, horseback trails, ball diamonds, and gardens.Topeka, KS Recreation