Kansas Communities in Festival Spotlight

Annual Kansas Sampler Festival coming to Liberal on May 4, 5; will showcase best Kansas has to offer

Published on: Apr 29, 2013

Kansas communities, Kansas products, Kansas business and Kansas people will all be in the spotlight May 4 and 5 as the annual Kansas Sampler Festival comes to Liberal.

Festival hours are from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, May 4 and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on May 5. Adult admission is $4; children 7-12 pay $3 and children 6 and under are free.

The annual festival is a project of the Kansas Sampler Foundation, which was founded by Inman natives Mil and Marci Penner, who began the event in 1990 as a book signing party for their first Kansas Weekend Guide. For eight years, it was held annually on the farm and then began to move around the state, changing location every two years.

The annual festival is a project of the Kansas Sampler Foundation, which was founded by Inman natives Mil and Marci Penner [pictured], who began the event in 1990 as a book signing party for their first Kansas Weekend Guide.
The annual festival is a project of the Kansas Sampler Foundation, which was founded by Inman natives Mil and Marci Penner [pictured], who began the event in 1990 as a book signing party for their first Kansas Weekend Guide.

The Foundation's mission is to preserve and sustain the rural culture of Kansas.

So far, host cities have included Pratt, Ottawa, Independence, Newton, Garden City, Concordia and Leavenworth. This is its second year in Liberal and it will move to Wamego in 2014 and 2015.

Festival overseer WenDee LaPlant says, "Visiting this event is the perfect way to get a start on your travel plans for the summer and throughout the year. It's like a living brochure of Kansas brought to life and offers the audience one stop shopping in finding places that meet their tastes and budget." 

Almost one fifth of all the communities in Kansas will participate in this year's Festival in Light Park. You can learn all about Kansas Play Klay made in Ellis, try out a kijafa crepe from the Pancake House in Liberal, discover the Whole Wall Mural, the longest sculpted brick mural in the U.S. in Concordia and make plans to climb over the giant concretions at Rock City at this year's festival.

A Kansas Products tent will be filled with Kansas entrepreneurs.  Three stages will feature Kansas musicians, children's entertainment and historic performers.  The food booths will feature Kansas specialty or ethnic foods.

Some of the attractions in or near Liberal, home to the International Pancake Day Race, include the Mid-America Air Museum, Dorothy's House and the Land of Oz, Baker Arts Center, Seward County Historical Museum, and the Mighty Samson of the Cimarron bridge.  

For more information, contact WenDee LaPlant at 620-585-2374 or wendee@kansassampler.org. For information on Liberal contact Sally Fuller at 620-626-0170 or tourism@cityofliberal.org